Wednesday, February 1, 2017

"Branding" Myself. Resistance or Mental Laziness?

Despite teacher leadership trainings and general awareness built by cruising Twitter in the wee hours, I have not spent a lot of time developing a personal "brand" on the web.  Sometimes, I feel like I should maybe break my web identity up into teacher leader, dabbler in possible money-making ideas online (ebay, teacherspayteachers, craigslist or whatever) and... what?  "Me"? Mom? Writer?  Half my Twitter feed is news articles and Tweets about politics.

This was the same problem I faced when I started this blog many years ago.  I still haven't resolved it.  I recently started a Teachers Pay Teachers store, despite feeling slightly trashy about selling work that I would give to my colleagues free at the drop of a hint.  I haven't sold anything except a winter break bingo set, so I started playing with Buffer, an app to help me post links to my TPT products trying to drum up some traffic.  I know my products don't have cutesy thumbnails with bubble-headed people of various skin tones, and I have yet to be consistent about the types of documents and support (lessons) I include, but my products are inexpensive, and good learning tools, so I am going to keep going slowly and figure it will build.  

But, I feel a bit inauthentic using a buffer to post to my Twitter feed (@mshintonsainz). I don't want my followers to feel as though I am a robot.  I am not going to robot-out everything... but it becomes fuzzy quickly, right?  I have actually stopped following people who filled up my feed with repeated babble and advertisements day and night.  Why wouldn't others?

Is it possible to do okay with this mish-mashy type of web presence?  Do I really need to develop a series of brands?  

Questions I will continue to consider... probably over the summer!

Later, friends!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Thinking about Audience and Purpose

Sooooo...I haven't really been writing here lately.

I'm not sure why, but I haven't been doing a lot of "personal" writing at all (poetry, musings, rants).  I have continued to write about how education policy impacts practice on "Stories from School Arizona"  And for the most part, that's it.

Life has been so full of ups, downs, movings, growings, mowings and schemings that there has been little time (or motivation) on my part to try to process all of that here.

Lately I have been considering starting a blog of  activity ideas that I have been trying for my ELD classroom, sort of an exploratory thing crossed with linking/promoting products I have posted on Teachers Pay Teachers.

I have also been wanting to do a more fun project that has potential:  A blog called "Mesaco on University" featuring all the Mexican restaurants on University here in Mesa.  So many!  It would be SO much fun to write food reviews with my family.  We could even do a bit of vlogging.

Anyway, it's all a bit less idealistic.  But that's where I am right now.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Driving... Yes Driving... to Puerto Vallarta


Why on earth did we decide to drive almost 2400 miles to and from Puerto Vallarta this summer?  The answer isn't especially flattering.

The short version: Our kids had the passport cards, and my husband, mother and I all had full passports.  Because my mom started asking questions the night before we were scheduled to fly out, we figured out that the passport cards were not good for air travel, but only for land or sea travel.  This was the night before our flight was scheduled to leave.

Once we had the final answer from the Department of State and US Airways, within a few minutes my husband and mother proposed that we drive.  We had already paid for the condo and a couple of excursions. And thus the nature of our vacation shifted from a relaxing three hour flight to ten days in a tropical paradise into a thirteen day odyssey.


Yup. 2407 miles round trip. In the good old van.  You can see there is still a sock on the driver's side windshield wiper.  The other wiper had fallen off during a late spring thunderstorm in Mesa, and we had to stop in Mazatlan at Grease Monkey and get a replacement blade.  Just in case.  Turned out we didn't neet it.  I did get a new mystery dent on the drivers side sliding door.  Other than that, she held together.  And so did I, despite a raised level of anxiety caused by reading travel warnings about drug cartel crossfire, driving over terrible roads with no shoulders, and racing the clock to get where we were going by dark (following the advice of every single relative and blog we consulted as we hastily prepared for our journey).


Here is a map of our route, including stopping points there and back.  Stay tuned for further installments!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

I gotta go to bed.

I gotta go to bed.  I gotta go to bed.

Sleep is best for stress, weight loss, mood.  Why is it so hard to stop adding to my lists?

I'd love to get back to writing.  I just bought a new Moleskine notebook.  We will see...

But for now, to bed.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Portal

An impossibly clear day 
Out of PDX
The black green growth
Cresting and falling below
Covers and softens 
A small lie floating
In the remnants of memory
Spinning in urgent currents
Of vast truths
The logged forest
Quilt patches 
Prickly as a shaved vulva
Stark and uncovered
Build the home where 
We live
Through a small portal
Darkly the land 
Swells by in
The bright sunshine.
The ancient craters,
Their peaks 
Flags of white

Let us pass.