Maryland: Conversations with Eileen Day 129

Morning My Friend,

It’s been a crazy July and as we come to the end I have a present coming to myself, as I often do. Yes, another computer.  I remember how long it took you to even deal with the missing letters on your keyboard and I’ve lost track of the laptops I have loved and abandoned for the newest toy. So the newest Apple toy will arrive this afternoon and I will be lost.

So for now I am writing on my hardworking 13 inch, once state-of-the-art wonder.

July began with the my mom’s death, just before her 94th birthday.  We raced from funeral, to Shivas, to packing, to plane, to Israel, to wedding and back home and with good fortune, there was still a lot of July left over to calm down and begin to feel the loss quietly.  Slowly I moved back into my life.  Without the pressure of  summer teaching projects I could breathe with friends who knew exactly where I was in my life.

Slowly I found myself back in the world with everyone else.  Last week I visited the HVWP’s annual Visitor’s Day without any responsibility, other than to just show up and take the SI 2012’s group photo.  I stayed the whole day: the morning led by Tim from Santa Barbara, an afternoon with the new SI and then the annual  barbecue at Tom’s.  By 8:30 I was back with Tuvia finishing the  packing for Maryland and Joseph’s Writing Project weekend.  I wasn’t  racing frantically this time.  I was ready now to embrace work that I loved.  For the first time I would be sharing my work from this year: showcasing the work of teachers with my video camera and great Apple software to share publicly.

Amtrak got me to Baltimore on time and Joseph was there to escort me to the B and B just outside of the city to work his small group of teacher leaders as they begin their work documenting their teaching.  We began together after lunch on Thursday.  I shared my Rebecca piece and we talked about the choices I made and we talked…a lot…and it was good.

Joseph, Pam, Shana, Corrie, and Michelle…. for the next few days we would be eating together, walking the grounds together, working together, getting frustrated together: BONDING  at the Gramercy Mansion B and B

And I had a bathroom with a sculpture for the shower: Check this out:

What a perfect retreat!

Yes, Joseph was tired just off his summer institute and yes, we did hit up against some tech issues, but who says the road should be easy.  We embrace the bumps in the road 🙂

Teachers are going public, bravely opening their classrooms to a new audience. Telling their own stories.  Framing the argument.  Adding something authentic to the assessments created by those on the outside.

First steps were made with our group.  Everyone left with video to work on, tools to support the work and plans for meeting up again to keep the process moving.

I can’t wait to be back but next time NO AMTRAK!  Joseph and Joyce did get me to the train with lots of time to spare but the train was delayed.  After first it was just an hour.  Tuvia was contacted.

But once I was on the train the delays continued.  3 hours of delays… I was supposed to be home by 4:30…. We didn’t hit Penn Station until 8:15.

Next time, I’m willing to drive!  Right?

Now it’s time to shower and get my guitar ready for a lesson with Jon.

More coming,


Retreat Highlights:

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Categories: Conversations with Eileen, University of Maryland Writing Project Doc Retreat | 11 Comments

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11 thoughts on “Maryland: Conversations with Eileen Day 129

  1. What a great time! You’re making me want to get back there already. I just wrote my 4 senators urging support for NWP and mentioning our work. Thanks, Bonnie!

    • Pam

      What great photos of our time together. Sorry your train was delayed, but next time we can really “go” in your car. lol Thanks for your expertise and sharing. 🙂 See you in October.

  2. anastasc

    Thanks so much for coming down to help us! You really did need that car you kept talking about 🙂
    Come back soon!


    • I LOVED being with you guys and yes next time it’s my car all the way. Could be a new one to break in.

  3. Wow! That is one neat place! Thanks for sharing your slide show! I love seeing pics of B& b’s! Glad you were able to accomplish some work!

  4. My comments have disappeared
    Sometimes too, I notice when I go between blog platforms-not sure why-also mobile devices vs computers? Again not sure why-anyway, thanks for your comment! *hugs*

  5. Your writing about grief is so insightful and encouraging- here, especially, the way it is just tucked into the midst of living. I really love “calm down and begin to feel the loss quietly” and “I could breathe with friends who knew exactly where I was in my life.”

  6. What a fabulous place to be with an amazing group of people. I’m glad you had a chance to write and circle back to the importance of writing and also moving through the loss of your mother. Prayers xo nanc

  7. Flowers, the streams of sunlight, the green…how I love all the green. Glad your July ended in a serene and supportive place (aside from the train incident of course). Thanks for stopping by chalk-a-bration too!

  8. I watched July unfold on your Facebook feed. You’ve been all over and have done so much. So many highs (Israel and the writing retreats) and one big low (your mom’s passing). I’m glad that the month was filled with some sweetness despite the sorrow.
    BTW: I traveled to and from college with Amtrak and then commuted between Penn Station and Providence the year Marc and I lived apart. I NEVER had a delay like that! That’s simply AWFUL.
    Enjoy the new Mac.

  9. Wow! What an amazing retreat. Thanks for sharing all of the beautiful photos. I am happy for you to be able to have that time. I was sorry to hear about your mother but am glad that you had the space of July help you.

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