December Together Tips: Goats, Gratitude & Glitter

Dec 13, 2020

Dear Together Friends, Fans, and Family,

Winter is coming. The grief is real, and I keep being shocked at the lack of personal stories about the impact of the coronavirus on real people in our lives. It’s easy to crack jokes about quarantine hair and Zoom mullets (I’m keenly aware that my own jokes help me ward off my anxiety), but we must find a way to honor, too, the losses so many of us are experiencing – here’s one moving essay written by my former boss. Speaking of speaking one’s truth, I was equally moved by this reflection on the power of bringing one’s whole self into teaching and affirming all children. I deeply admire the courage of both Nicole and Tim’m and was moved to tears by their writing.

Less courageous, but on a subject I don’t often reference publicly (but probably should because the logistics of The Together Divorce are NO JOKE, should I be writing about this?), due to the logistics of blended families + pandemic + kid-sharing schedules + holidays, I found myself mostly solo on Turkey Day. Luckily, I made a Winter Play List for help when I’m prone to . . . let’s call it Maia Snack and Surf (me, lots of popcorn and dark chocolate peanut M&Ms, hiding under my covers, scrolling through Instagram #togethertruth).

Basically, Maia’s Winter Play List is a menu of specific options to pull me back to a lighter present when things get dark and gloomy. Included on the list: completing this three-year punch needle project, attempting this Yule log, finishing Olive Kitteridge on HBO (Maine!), and sorting through a few drawers here and there. Nothing on the list is NECESSARY, but all are creative indoor activities at the ready. Also, being the somewhat hardy Maine girl that I am, this is your PSA that there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing choices! This is how I found my way to Post-Turkey-Day solace on a West Virginia mountaintop solar-powered goat farm. If you ever get a chance to hang with goats, I highly recommend it. Pure joy.

And finally, I’ve hung my 2021 wall calendar with great trepidation. With the exception of my children’s birthdays, it is . . . empty. But our January classes are coming, so join me on the Zoom, and we WILL get it Together! And for PURE AWESOME, holy-oh-my-goodness look at this Together Trio of high school students in Memphis!



PS Finished this book, donating here, and listening here.

PPS Order THIS! Written by a super Together School Leader in LA!

Together Treasure Box 

Top Together Tributes

  • Top Friendship File: Read here about how two friends use haikus to stay in touch! My bestie Karn and I have been doing this, and it is awesome.
  • Top Strengths of Self-Doubt: Listen to my former colleague and founder of Braven share how to turn your self-doubts into strengths.
  • Top Virtual Meeting Norms: Thanks to Celeste at YES Prep for sharing these ways to make virtual meetings better!
  • Top Steps for Time Management: (video) The folks over at SAM share some ideas with us. (hat tip Marshall Memo!)

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