Those of you who have kids (or have spent any time around kids) will get what I’m saying here…
…Oftentimes the way kids act at home and the way they act in public are two different things. When he was little my son, way more than my daughter, could be a little hell-beast at home. He was mouthy and argumentative…admittedly, traits he got from is mama, but when he was a wee one he didn’t yet know how to channel it properly. Sometimes he drove me crazy, but in public? He was amazing. Adults loved him. He was polite, respectful and well-spoken. I can’t think of a time that he didn’t do me proud. I’ve always believed that is the true indicator of my success as a parent. If my kids are fabulous humans with big hearts and manners out in the world, the hell-beast at home is irrelevant.
I learned yesterday that perhaps the same is true of my students. I’ve mentioned before that the 6th graders I got this year in my class were not only an unusually large group, but they are also highly immature and unruly. We’re rolling into the third nine weeks and I’ve gotten the basics of their behavior in line, but my aids and I still spend a good chunk of pretty much everyday having discussions with them about their social skills (of lack thereof) and interactions with others. I love them, but seriously, there are days when they mentally and emotionally exhaust me.
Yesterday though, they did their school mama proud. It was the annual 6th grade field trip to see the symphony at Heinz Hall in Pittsburgh. I had to chaperone this year since I do have such a ginormous group of 6th graders with a plethora of needs, both physical and emotional. You guys, they were amazing! The entire bus trip both there and back (about an hour and a half each way) they talked quietly amongst themselves or played on their phones together. Every single one of them were polite, well-behaved and respectful at the theater. I could not have been prouder of them.
So maybe, even though there are at least three times a week that I want to pound my head against the wall, and I feel like they are not listening to a word that I say, just maybe they are actually picking up more from me than I realized. School, our classroom, to them is “home” so they feel safe to let out their inner hell-beasts. But when we were out in the world where it truly matters, they showed me that they are well on their way to being the beautiful human beings that I knew they all could be. To me, teaching them to be decent kind people is just as important to me as teaching them how to use money or to sound out new words. There are days when I’m sure that I’m in some way failing them because they just don’t seem to be “getting it”. Yesterday showed me that, even though it may not be apparent all of the time, all of my frustration is worth it.
The day that I wore this, I was standing behind my desk when my friend first walked into the room. She’s the adorable little Italian grandma of our tribe. She said, “Oh look Debbie, how cute! You’re dressed so professional today!” It didn’t occur to me that she could only see my top half so I looked down at myself and said, “Seriously?” I walked out around the desk and she exclaimed and giggled, “Oh my! I could only see the top half, how cute!” I said, “Ya, faux leather leggings and camo ankle boots probably aren’t on any professional wear lists…”
And that, in my opinion, is what makes this outfit so much fun. You see the top half; a button down and sweater and think “cute, but nothing exciting happening here”. But the bottom half? That’s where the magic happens. Taking slightly edgy and out of the ordinary pieces like faux leather leggings and camo boots and pairing them with basics makes for a nice balance of the two. It’s also an easy way to gently ease yourself in to more adventurous clothing choices if you’re hesitant about trying out something that is out of your comfort zone.
Not only is it okay to mix prints, it’s also perfectly fine to mix styles. My style is hard to pin down; I guess it’s more eclectic than anything else so I’m often mixing pieces with different “styles”. This outfit is the perfect example, half professional and half edgy. Mixing pieces that at first glance shouldn’t work together is often the easiest way to add some flare to your look.
THE LINK UPS
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