Thursday, May 29, 2014

Weeks of Celebration!

The end of a school year is always crazy for teachers … but especially so when you add your own retirement to the mix!  Yep … we've been celebrating for two weeks here in DillyDallydom!
It is a long standing tradition to award retiring teachers an engraved Alaskan Gold Pan in our community.  Sort of an odd feeling to see one with your own name on it!
Two elementary teachers also retired this year … together we represent over 75 years of teaching in Cordova.  Each of us have taught a generation and have had the children of former students in our classroom!  I love that!
Many kind comments … good friends …
… and cake!  Of course!
My DillyDally Girls 
Sister traveled home from California to participate in some of the fun!  Brother was out of town on business, but Girlfriend DillyDally joined in the fun and didn't miss an event!  Love having these two beautiful faces at my dinner table!
In the very early hours (4:00 am!) … on the last day with students … I made a double batch of Caramel Rolls.
I surprised my 8th Grade Language Arts class with rolls and their favorite teacher who retired last year! Their squeals of delight were music to my soul!  What fun!
A former teaching couple also hosted an adult only party … so generous and gracious of them …
… many retired and current colleagues were there …
… stories and memories were shared …
… gifts and tributes were given.  OMGosh Good Golly!  Look at my hair!  Guess it is obvious I was in "party mode"!
Yep … we were even dancing!  What a wonderful way to begin the three day weekend!
We filled our weekend with family, fun and food!  Many friends gifted us with fresh seafood … so generous … so delicious!
I'm happiest when all my DillyDallys are seated at my table!
Sister got to determine the menu every night …
… she may live in the big city, but she loves the home cooked food of her childhood!  It was so wonderful to have the entire family home!
Tuesday and Wednesday this week were inservice days … I spent the time working on clearing out my classroom.  Several good friends dropped by to wish me well … it was wonderful … and I got everything done!
Am not sure that my decision to retire has really hit me … it probably won't until next fall when everyone else is returning to school … and I do not.  I have loved everything about my career … even when it was hard or difficult, I looked forward to Mondays … I was passionate about what I taught … and I completely enjoyed the students!  What a blessing it is to feel like that … bringing it to a close while enjoying the journey!

Next?  Well … I am only sure of one thing … my dillydally lifestyle will take on a new focus!

Do what you love.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


Between having only two weeks of school left and my retirement approaching … there isn't much dillydallying going on … only dabbles here and there.
Saturday morning was beautiful … I spent the morning with my coffee … attempting to recover from Prom … late nights wear me out!  ;-)
Our local nursery opened on Saturday … love it … it means spring truly has arrived!  I celebrate every Mother's Day here … getting plants for my containers!
On Sunday, I celebrated Mother's Day by allowing myself some time to dillydally!  Yep … I am still exploring with my crochet hook!
I came up with a plan for the medallions … will keep you posted!  Mr. DD spoiled me with my favorite breakfast and later that evening Brother and Girlfriend joined us for dinner.  We were celebrating Mr.  DD's birthday as well!
Green is finally beginning to arrive … trees and bushes are supporting new buds … they usually leaf out the third week of May!  We're almost there!
Wild flowers are beginning to bloom too!
Today we enjoyed our first campfire of the season!  Many hotdogs were roasted and consumed by students we took on a field trip!
Sun, sand and fun!  What a wonderful way to dabble!

Do what you love.  Dabble.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Last Dance

Last night was beautiful here in DillyDallydom … 

Handmade Prom Invitations
… and it was a "Nautical Night" for the teens of Cordova!  I've been assisting the Junior Class make Prom preparations for months as their class advisor.
All the planning came together and suddenly the decorations were finished … 
… the tables were set … 
… and the food prepared.  Young women wore beautiful dresses and the guys looked handsome in their finest!  The music played.  They danced, laughed, and enjoyed one another with the universal energy that adolescent's possess.  

I began my prom planning career in 1974 when my friend Marie and I served as the Co-Chairpersons for our own Junior Prom.  While the kids and I were decorating Thursday night, one of the girls commented that she loved doing this and might perhaps become an Events Planner.  That simple comment touched my heart in more ways than my students can comprehend.  I can't begin to count the number of formal high school dances I have helped students plan over the span of my teaching career!  Last night was my "last dance" … my retirement from teaching is only weeks away!
Before long I will be updating my resume' … ;-) ... I'll be sure to add the following under Professional Skills:  
Dance Planner (1974-2014)  Mastered the art of thematic dance events for adolescents.  Forty years of experience.

Such wonderful memories … I am blessed.

Do what you love.  Dance.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Kick the Guilt Habit!

Today … I find myself revisiting one of the primary principles that support the platform of the dillydally lifestyle.
You know you're a dillydallier … 
When you no longer associate guilt with dillydallying! 
I know … I understand … easier said than done … just hear me out on this.

Yesterday, a memorial service was held for QBee Julie and her son Adam.  It was a very touching and heartwarming occasion … an opportunity to share our love and support for her husband and surviving sons while we celebrated the lives Julie and Adam enjoyed.
As quilters, we create treasures meant to last for generations.  We find comfort and pleasure in knowing that our quilts will allow us to be remembered by family members long after we leave this life.
That was not the case for Julie … everything was lost in the mudslide … her quilts and her stash.  Our hearts ache for her family … in multiple ways … on so many levels.  Like quilters everywhere, the QBees sought comfort in their patchwork and made a commemorative quilt for her husband, it can be viewed on the guild's blog.
I sought solace in piecing at home as well.  Julie was very involved in hosting our guild's Bonnie Hunter event in 2011!  We sat together … giggled our way through a fabulous quilt weekend … and both worked on red versions of Bonnie's Blue Ridge Beauty quilt!  Julie finished her quilt a long while back … she understood the dillydally lifestyle and never said a word about mine being "unfinished"! ;-)  As you can see from the note I had left in the box … I need to piece another 84 blocks!  Here's a dillydally tip for you … always leave a note with your projects!  Hee-hee!
 I reread the pattern and got myself organized …
… as I pieced together blocks, memories surfaced … wonderful memories.
Mr. DD and I have been married nearly 33 years.  I bought this strawberry print as a newlywed and made a tablecloth.  We didn't have a table … it was used to protect the carpet while we ate on the floor picnic style!
 The red check in the upper right corner … I used that fabric to make kitchen accessories when we bought our first home!
 The red rose print is from the first fabric series by Jinny Beyer.  Oh, how I still love those fabrics!  I referred to myself as a quilter back then!  That makes me laugh out loud when I consider my limited skills at the time!  Too fun!  Wonderful memories!  Memories that might have been forgotten if I didn't have this old and extensive stash! ;-)

I used to associate guilt to just about everything!  According to Garrison Keillor, it is because I am Lutheran.  Julie was Catholic and we used to laugh about how guilt was a habit we shared.
When I began developing the principles of the dillydally lifestyle, Julie was a part of those conversations … she was my head cheerleader!  We both agreed that guilt had to be removed from those dillydally activities that bring joy to our lives.  Guilt and self-deprecation is a habit … after 50+ years it took us a while … but we succeeded … we removed guilt from our dillydally activities!  

I strongly feel that we need to do everything we can to protect the joy that dillydallying brings to our lives!  And even after we have won the personal battle with guilt … there are those who will continue to attempt to reintroduce it in our dillydally lifestyle. ;-)  With practice, I have gotten pretty good at deflecting their efforts and no longer care about any criticism they may have.
Please consider this … change the way you look at your dillydallying … celebrate your finishes … every unfinished project is filled with potential … and your stash is filled with memories and possibilities!
Before I realized it this afternoon, I had pieced 60 blocks!  Wowser!  These blocks represent so much … they are a time capsule … reflecting multiple aspects of my life.  What a joyful process!   And … it means I only have 24 blocks to go!  Thanks for listening … I'll step down from the dillydally pulpit … for now! ;-)
Do what you love.  Break the guilt habit!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally