Friday, February 10, 2006

Your assignment, should you choose to accept it

Ok. Writing assignment time. Here's one I gave my 11th graders recently to start gearing them up for a compare/contrast essay. The format is simple. Choose two specific time periods in your life. Write about then, alternating the phrases "I used to" and "But now I," creating a "poem" that shows how your life has changed over time. Here's mine. It's sort of a high school student/teenager vs high school teacher/mother. Oh--complete your assignment in my comments, or your blog, whichever you prefer. Let's say this one is due by Tuesday. Extra gold stars for those who turn in their work early.

I used to...But now I

I used to wake up at 6:00 to have time to choose the perfect outfit, shower, blow-dry, apply cosmetics chosen from a tackle box full of Bonnie Bell and Cover Girl, and still get to school on time,
But now I wake up at 6:00 to have time to grab a quick shower, slap on my Estee Lauder tinted moisturizer with SPF 30, find a pair of pants that will zip, wrestle Sophie into her clothes, bribe her to get her hair done with a Pop Tart, pack her lunch, and still get to school on time.
I used to spend Sunday afternoon listening to Rick Dee's weekly top forty with Mandy, hiding out in our room to avoid our parents,
But now I say things like, "I can't believe the music these kids listen to," IM with Mandy more than I actually talk to her, and hope my mom will call on Sunday and offer to feed us dinner.
I used to sit in Mr. Bonzo's English class, passing notes under the table to my best friend Kara about my crush on Erik, and her sometimes boyfriend Paul,
But now I sit on the toilet while Erik's in the bathtub because we only have one bathroom, and am deciding what dessert to take to Paul and Jen's house for dinner tomorrow.
I used to tell stories that started with the phrase, "Ok. I was SO tore..."
But now I tell stories that start with the phrase, "Yesterday, Sophie got into..."
I used to feel something was wrong with me because I never felt "the spirit" in church, liked to make-out with boys, could do my English assignments in 1/4 the time of the other kids, and was never ever a size 8,
But now I feel something is wrong with me because my walls are filthy, I never dust, I'm rarely "in the mood," my daughter is sassy and eats frosting for lunch, and I will never ever be a size 8.
I used to be proud of my great rack, blond hair, mad vocabulary skills, and ability to put people at ease and make then laugh,
But now, I'm proud of my great rack (though now it needs a bit of a boost from an industrial strength bra); my blond hair (though now it gets a little help from Katy and a highlight kit); my mad vocabulary skills (which, to be honest, are quite prodigious); my ability to put people at ease and make them laugh; my fetching, messy, and precocious daughter; my loyal, loving, and sexy husband; and my willingness to look at my life, with all its little foibles and follies, and laugh.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Soph, her friend Addison, and I are having a valentine making party this afternoon. I can't wait.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
She's coming down with a cough. I'm holding my breath to see if it's just a little thing, or will grow into a full blown problem, complete with fever, a doctor visit, and several sleepless nights.


OldMotherHubbardSharesAll said...

I used to rock my dolls and wish I would grow up faster and move on to real babies.
....But now I rock my grandbabies and wish they wouldn't grow up so fast.

I used to watch Randy in 8th grade and wish he would notice me and know I was in LOVE!
....But now I watch Randy and know that ne notices me and that he's in LOVE.

I used to think if I could just make it through High School I could be my own boss
....But now I know that I haven't been my own boss since High School

I used to think my parents were stupid and trying to ruin my life
.....Now I think my parents are great and know they want only the best for me

Katy said...

Then college vs. now college

I used to share a room with my buddy Cheryl and stay up all night giggling.
But now I share a house with my parents and stay up all night without sleep aids.

I used to prepare for class by reading over a monologue a couple times right before class and wowing everyone with my mad skills.
But now I prepare for class by actually thinking, analyzing and enjoying my work...right before class.

I used to sell overpriced shoes to old ladies with bunions and tell my boss I like her mullet.
But now I balance accounts and do data entry and work for one of my best friends.

I used to be a hit with the menfolk, finding a different boy to flirt with and fool around with on a very regular basis.
But now I spend my weekends baking cookies, watching John Cusack movies and trying to convince my mom that my life isn't incomplete just because I don't have a date.

I used to be able to hold my liquor.
But now I can barely hold my Nyquil.

I used to think I was one sexy bitch in pretty much everything I wore.
But now the majority of my morning routine is spent trying to find something equal parts comfy, practical, and normal.

I used to eat Ramen's two meals a day.
But now I don't have time to eat two meals a day.

I used to think I'd be married and have a baby by now.
But now I'm really glad I don't and that I get to be Katy for a little longer.

I used to get embarassed and terrified when a boy tried to cop a feel.
But now I'd be thrilled if a guy even smiled at me.

I used to have a complete and total meltdown at least once a week.
But now I'm surrounded by family and friends that love me. And I love me too.

patrice said...

first, I want to say that I love these writing assignments and glimpses into everyone's lives. I have to say that oldmotherhubbard's is really excellent. the perspective of time is something that continues to impress me...that I'll never be able to understand something as well as I will when I can look at it from 20 or 30 years away.

you can find mine at my blog, because it really gets to the heart of why I wanted to start blogging in the first place.

~A~ said...

Can I have permission to be a little late? Rob tagged me and I just finished that.

Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease. If you're ever in WA I'll make you coffeeeeeeeeeeee.

I'll post mine in my blog when I'm done in the next day or so.

~A~ said...

I was going to do this in my underpants but the crazed cookie mom emailed me so I had to post that drama. Oh and count me in on the book thing if you want. I don't think my honey has figured out that the Outlander series is romance yet or else he would be giving me a whole lot of shit about it. I'm reading Fiery Cross now.


I used to believe in unicorns, talk to faeries, and dance with out care.
But now I teach my children to do this; so I still can.

I used to put my friends address as the return address and mine as the mailing and stick it in the mail box so it would be “returned to sender”.
But now, if a friend isn’t in my email address book, cell phone or IM list, I tend to forget about them and the only regular mail I send out is my Netflix dvds.

I used to stand in front of the mirror and stuff socks in my bra wondering what I would look like bigger
But now I stand in front of the mirror and wonder if I should wear a tighter bra to make me look smaller.

I used to make holes in my jeans to wear with my Doc. Martins.
But now I buy my kids jeans at Sears so when they get hole before outgrowing their jeans I can exchange them and I scoff at the ridiculous price of Doc Martins having not worn them since Nordstrom’s started selling them.

I used to think that I would marry a musician and have a dozen kids.
But now I’m married to a cop who can’t sing or keep a beat and happy that I stopped at four kids.

I used to have a carrier that was full of excitement, drama and paid pretty well for being single and no bills.
But now excitement is generated from the kids, the drama comes at GS cookie sale time and I don’t get paid shit and have a crap load of bills.

I used to go out drinking till midnight with friends every night, up at 5 every morning, work all day and do it again.
But now I stay home and awake past midnight every night, up at 5 every morning, work even harder all day and do it again. And rarely drink anything stronger than herbal tea anymore.

I used to drive a HUMMVV, shoot M-60’s, MK-19’s and M-16’s without missing a shot.
But now I drive an Astro van and wish I had an M-60 side mounted for those assholes that cut me off.

I used to get chronic strep throat that pissed me off
But now that I had my tonsils removed I get laryngitis and I find it funny because when I’m quiet, everyone is quiet.

I used to be afraid of the gypsy lady who buys rotten kids.
Now I call my mom, who’s the voice of the gypsy lady, to scare my kids in to behaving.

I used to blast my music, even the stuff with the naughty lyrics, because; hey, who’s gonna sensor me right?
But now I sensor myself to protect my babies.

I used to care what others thought of me and told myself I didn’t.
But now I tell myself I care what others think of me but I really don’t. I finally figured out that those thoughts worth caring about are going to like me anyway.

And because I’m in a sappy gushy mood……

I used to wonder what my mom meant when she talked about the love between a mother and her child(ren)
But now I know.

Missuz J said...

An A++ for you. Very well done. You continue to be an enigma to me--but a fun, funny, smart, and inspiring one. Thanks for playing along.

A++ for you as well. Sorry I didn't call this weekend. I'm a bad bad sister. With Janz here and Erik sick, I wasn't able to find my ass with both hands the last two days--and I even had a map.

A++ and a gold star for being the first to respond. Finally got you on my links. You are a rockin' lady.

lonna said...

This is a great idea. I put my answer on my blog.

Stine said...

I think I'm late on the assignment, can I still get a C?

I used to berate myself for being nearly 6 feet tall and one hundred and zoa*lkea %22&*() pounds, and an Amazon,
Now I look at my naked body in the mirror and shake my boobs to one side while my belly chub to the other,

I used to want to be a forensic abnormal psychologist,
Now I practice psychology through my hands as a buddhist,

I used to think that I wanted to be famous.

Now I wonder if I will ever live down the things for which I am infamous.

I used to make a nest of pillows around me, put earplugs in my ears, wrap my head in my "head blankee", and bolster myself when I slept.

Now I make a nest of pillows around me, put earplugs in my ears, wrap my head in my "head blankee", and bolster myself when I sleep.