Celebrate Saturday – End of Summer Celebrations


I’m happy to be joining Ruth Ayres @ ruth ayres writes and others to celebrate and appreciate the goodness of the past week(s).

Well, summer is over – but it doesn’t exactly feel like it  The sun is still shining and the schools are still closed!  It’s a little challenging to feel in a celebratory mood when the teacher’s strike here in B.C. is still preventing teachers from teaching and students from learning.  But despite that, I have lots of things to celebrate and be grateful for as my summer came to an “unofficial” end.    Here are my recent celebrations:

1)  My husband had a milestone birthday and I planned a surprise party for him.   It was low key  – but all his buddies showed up at the pitch and putt near our house and then back to our place for a barbeque.  Lots of laughs, lots of beer, lots of fun!  The highlight was his brother David who had flown in from Kelowna for the weekend to surprised him – loved the look on both of their faces!

My hubby gets a surprise visit from his brother.
Beers on the deck after golf.

3)  My trip to Toronto – Last week I spent two wonderful days in Toronto.  When I arrived, my publisher from Pembroke, Mary Macchiusi, took me on an amazing adventure!  We spent the day visiting some spectacular places, the highlight of which was Niagara falls.  I had never been there before and it truly was a remarkable sight.  The power of the water was something I had never experienced before and I could actually feel the strength of the falls inside my stomach!   Majestic and hypnotic.  There was a rainbow stretching across the entire falls.  I have never seen both sides of a rainbow before – it was amazing.

Niagara Falls with my Pembroke publisher (and friend) Mary Macchuisi.



We also visited the charming streets of Niagara on the Lake and stopped by a winery.  A little history as we stopped to see  Laura Secord’s house and climbed the 250 winding steps to the top of the General Brock monument, site of one of the famous battles of 1812.  A small but spectatular view from the top!  (Coincidentally, the first two schools I ever taught in in Vancouver were called   General Brock Elementary and Laura Secord Elementary!  Too funny!)  It was a day PACKED with so many amazing sites, great food and wonderful company.  Thanks, Mary!

General Brock monument.
View from the top of General Brock monument – Canada on one side of the river USA on the other!


Laura Secord’s house.

Day 2 – I presented a workshop at The Country Day School in King, Ontario.   This school has been using Reading Power in the primary grades for a year and had invited me to spend the day with them during for their one of their Pro. D. days.  I spent the morning giving an overview of Reading Power to the whole staff and then spent the afternoon with the primary staff  sharing my ideas on “going deeper” with some of the strategies.   The staff was amazing – so warm and enthusiastic.  It was a pleasure meeting them and I am grateful to Jenny Handrigan for inviting me and Ann Wildberger for her support in bringing me there.

Staff of The Country Day School.
Primary staff at the Country Day School.

3) My son – the hockey goalie.  I know summer is officially over when hockey try-outs start!  I have mixed feelings about putting children through such a stressful and often disappointing process.  They say it builds character but it can be so hard to watch.  I celebrate my goalie son and his willingness each year to take the risk and put  himself out there to be “selected” or “rejected”.  It’s not an easy experience for him (or his parents!) and I admire his courage and determination, whether he “makes the team” or doesn’t.


4) Facebook Page – I have never been a huge follower of Facebook – I have a personal profile but very rarely update it.  My good friend Jen Daerindinger has been encouraging me to start a Facebook page for  Reading Power – focusing on posts for teachers and sharing books and lessons.  This past week she came over and helped me set it up.  I am thrilled with how easy it is and how much fun I’m having posting and reading through feeds. Here’s the link in case you want to check it out! (Thanks, Jen!)


Hoping you have many things to celebrate this week!  Thanks for stopping by!





This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. carriegelson

    Love all of this. I am particularly drawn to that rainbow. Wouldn’t it be great to find a little back to work magic at the end of it right now? Congratulations to you, your husband and your boys! Many things to celebrate here. I am so glad you got to go to Ontario and share all of your wonderful ways. Must have felt really good to be in touch with “work” Looks like a fantastic trip!

  2. Adrienne Gear

    Thanks, Carrie! Yes, I actually did make a little “wish” on that rainbow that we would all be back at school. Yes, it felt good to be in a school and to feel the anticipation of the teachers as they prepared for the start of their school year. All future workshops are on hold, as you know, but it felt good to be doing what I love – even for just one day!

  3. Linda Baie

    Still thinking positive for you in the strike sadness! But loved seeing all the wonderful things you’ve been doing-husband’s birthday, Beautiful Niagara, your son’s grit! Terrific!

    1. Adrienne Gear

      Thanks, Linda! I am doing my best to focus on the positive things, in light of all the negativity surrounding the strike! Yes, hockey grit is definitely an important trait to have during try-outs!

  4. mikey

    you spelled Niagara incorrectly. It’s not Niagra

    1. Adrienne Gear

      Thanks for the spell check! I’ve made the correction!

  5. Terje

    Congratulations to your son and Happy Birthday to your husband. Your trip to Toronto and your PD day were certainly bright spots in the midst of the ongoing strike.

    1. Adrienne Gear

      Thank you! Yes, trying to find the positives – it’s certainly a difficult time for teachers and students in BC at the moment. I’m hoping there will be an end to all of this very soon!

  6. Jennifer Laffin

    It looks like you are finding lots of fun ways to stay busy, despite being able to work. I love your pictures of Niagara Falls — capturing the rainbow! Have a great week!


  7. Adrienne Gear

    Thanks, Jennifer. Niagara falls was an amazing site – especially with the rainbow. Hoping the strike will settle and we all will be back to school very soon!

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