Friday, November 4, 2011

TGIF, 11/14/11 Edition

(photo by me)

I've been quite the negligent little blogger this week, haven't I?
Let me explain: Monday (yes, Halloween, the horror!) was my last day on the job and I've been struggling to get my bearings being at home ever since.  I've been taking time for home projects, and have certainly been busy reflecting.

When I was in the fifth grade, my teachers Mrs. Jones and Mrs. Mangini were required to complete our report cards, those white-yellow-pink carbon versions, on a quarterly basis. I always liked school, considered myself to be an excellent student, and anxiously awaited the moment I could lay eyes on my grades every few months.

Teachers weren't required to use traditional A, B, C marks in the fifth grade; instead, they used other letters like O (for 'outstanding'), S (for 'satisfactory'), and NI ('needs improvement'). Teachers also had the option to further qualify each grade with a plus or minus after the letter (for example, O+ was a concise way of saying, 'wow, this kid is really awesome and super-smart').

All four quarters of the year had passed, and just before my class was ready to formally move on to the sixth grade, the time came for grades to be handed out. Mrs. Mangini, the fifth grade teacher who covered social studies and language arts, was the bearer of the report cards that would represent our progress in fifth grade. I don't remember my individual marks today, but I do remember the message she wrote on that collection of carbon sheets. 

It read:
"The world needs more competent women like you, Ashley. Good luck in 6th grade."

I'm not in the 6th grade anymore. I'm in my late twenties, married, and still learning as I go.
I want to live up to those great expectations. I want to believe that I'm competent and that the world still needs me.

I know my next career adventure is just around the corner.

Happy weekend, all.
 The regularly-scheduled posting will resume on Monday, I promise.


  1. Congrats on the first week of the rest of your life doing something wonderful! So happy for you and I can't wait to see what's next!

  2. sending you some positive vibes, woman! It takes a lot of courage to follow your heart. Life is short. Dare to dream and then dare to LIVE your dream!

    You CAN and WILL be successful when you choose to do what you love. I have a girlfriend who dreamt of opening her own clothing boutique. After two years of doing it on the side, it became so successful that she had to quit her 9-5 that murdered her soul (we're both in the same industry). Now, she's about to open her own storefront THIS WEEKEND.

    Not everyone has what it takes to leave the comfort and stability of a job that sucks. You're going to need support so feel free to lean on us along the way!

  3. My hat goes off to you for taking a leap of faith. I've also been feeling a little restless at work, and things finally seem to be falling into place. Keep that faith and good luck with your search -- I'm sure you'll do great!

  4. I never think of myself as a user of emoticons, but this post made me teary and I want to send you a big smiley face. Or some hugs and kisses.


  5. Oh, I know this feeling so well! It's tough to get your bearings during big transitions like this one. Sending you all kinds of love and support.

    That Mrs. Mangini - such a smart lady. It's amazing the impact good teachers can have!

  6. That is such a wonderful comment and so very true. You are going to perform O+ in your next career adventure.

  7. Mrs. Mangini knew what she was talking about! I just know you're going to do great things. Do you have any Philly frame shop recommendations?

  8. This post brought tears. Isn't is great that a teacher made a lasting impression on you and could see your talent even then? Enjoy your time to reflect. Your pyracantha is beautiful, btw.

  9. I read Mrs. Mangini’s comments on your 5th grade report card for myself tonight. Little did she know the impact her words would have…almost sixteen years later and you are still gaining strength and encouragement from them. She had it right…don’t let your current situation cause you to forget who you are and what you have to offer. Love you;-)

  10. What a great comment from your teacher! You are definitely competent and brilliant. Your future's so bright . . .

  11. Incredible what a few well-chosen words can mean, even years later. You go, girl. I'm sure great things are ahead.


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