I live in Northeast Ohio.  Northeast Ohio looks a lot like this for most of the months between November and March April.  Shovelling is a part of my life, and never has that been moreso than this year  (thank you Winter Storm Nemo)

My house is on a corner which means we have two sidewalks we need to maintain. Them’s the rules in our fair city.

Don’t tell anyone (all secrets are safe on the internet, right?) but I actually enjoy  shoveling.   Yeah, I know it’s crazy, especially when we sometimes get pounded with heavy wet stuff .  But I find myself enjoying this if only for the fact that it is one of the few things I get to do that, even if it is for a brief sunny afternoon, it can be completed.  FInished. Done. Sit down.  Have a beer.

I love teaching. I love playing with technology and making it bend so it helps people think and share and connect.  But both with teaching as well as bashing on  the tools, sometimes you feel like you aren’t getting anywhere.  And then there are the emails and the voicemail messages you ignored while you were teaching or bashing.  It all seems endless.

Some days I just crave being able to say “I did that. That. Right. There. And –if only for a moment?– it is done.”  And to satisfy that craving: I shovel.

Since I took this picture it has snowed, rained, frozen, melted and snowed again.  And I have shoveled several more times.  And each time I felt like I got something accomplished. Hooray.

Which is a heckuvalot more than I can say about what  the top of my desk in my office looks like right now…


Not my office, to be true, but it could be…


Spring and spring break will be here in 3 weeks.  I, for one, am oh so ready. 🙂




Barbara is a Lecturer in Hispanic Studies at a small liberal arts college in Maine. Rumor has it this was also her alma mater. She used to work for a small liberal arts college in the cornfields of Ohio for almost 20 years as a teacher and language center director. Prior to these adventures in higher ed she taught high school Spanish and loved it. She wishes she had more time in her life to play with her dogs, write, read, swim, do yoga things and making stuff out of clay. To see her online portfolio please click here!

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