Friday, 31 August 2018

Back To School? I'm Ready! (Almost)

Summer is over.

Not technically, I know, but you can feel the shift in the air, right? The cooler temperatures, the slow change of colour. I actually raked leaves yesterday!

The truth is, fall is my favourite season—Halloween!—but the end of summer means that school is right around the corner, and even though I’m always excited about getting back to class (and setting my yearly goals), that first day can sometimes be a bit challenging.

I’m not used to waking up at 7 a.m. Or getting out of my PJs before noon. Or making my own lunch. I can’t even think about what I’m supposed to take on my first day. (Except the new pens my mom bought me when we went supply shopping this week!)

I don’t want to forget anything on Tuesday though, so I’m preparing this weekend. Here are some ways I am going to get ready for class:

1.    Organize my supplies — put paper in my binder, sharpen pencils, double check that pens are working, etc.
2.    Pre-pack a lunch. This year I am focussing on nutrition, and all the things that will help me be a better, stronger, and faster athlete.
3.    Get a good night’s sleep the night before. That’s a tricky one because I’m always so excited that I CAN’T sleep. But maybe if I spend the whole day before reading… <grin>
4.    Make sure my bike is ready to go. I plan on taking advantage of the warm-ish weather while we still have it. There’s nothing worse than a flat tire on your first day, though.

OK, I think that’s it! Can you think of anything I’ve missed?

Gotta jet! If you’re going back to school on Tuesday, good luck! I hope you have a great long weekend—the last one of the summer!

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Saturday, 25 August 2018

Setting SMART goals for the school year

If you’ve read my blog long enough — * waves to long time readers * — then you know I like to set school goals every year. I don’t always hit the mark (I’m really terrible at Math!), but I think making goals keeps me a little bit more focused.

That said, I had a GIANT Summer To-Do and I didn’t quite finish everything on it. (Maybe it's because I wasn’t making SMART goals.)

Not SMART in the “intelligence” way. S.M.A.R.T is an acronym for goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-based. Get it? SMART. I know it sounds complex, but let’s take a look at my summer list. Sure I had some specific goals, and most of them were relevant (it was about having fun, right?) but I fell apart at time-based. There’s NO WAY I could have crammed everything I wanted to do into two months.

Just like, getting 100% in Math is NOT achievable for me.

That doesn’t mean I’ve failed though. It just means I have to think…SMARTer.

Keeping that in mind, here are my S.M.A.R.T. goals for school this year:

1. I will increase my Math mark by 10%. (Specific, right? Also…measurable!)
2. I will read 8 books by the end of the school year.
3. I will go for an afternoon run five days a week, no matter how busy I am.
4. I will volunteer for one school committee. I have NO idea which one yet, but it will be something meaningful. (This is obviously measurable — and achievable!)
5. I will use my ENTIRE notebook before starting a new one. Okay, this sounds easy, but I LOVE starting a new notebook. There’s something exciting about the first page. I can do this — I just might need to write MORE to fill up the pages. Which, ironically, is another of my school goals this year.

These are my Top 5. What are some of your school goals this year? Are you being SMART?

Gotta jet! Have a great weekend.

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 17 August 2018

Do You Know What My Favourite August Holiday Is?

It's no secret that I love comics—especially SUPERMAN (who was created by a Canadian, in case you didn't already know)—but I have another favourite that you probably know about if you've followed my blog for a while—FRANKENSTEIN. 

I love all things Frankenstein—the books, the movies, the costumes... The picture on this blog is me dressed up as Frankenstein's monster (obviously) a couple of Halloweens ago. 

Aside from Halloween, there are actually TWO days specifically devoted to celebrating Frankenstein, and one of them is less than two weeks away! 

August 30 is International Frankenstein Day, a celebration of Mary Shelley's birthday. In case you don't know, Shelley is the author of the original Frankenstein book—the story that started it all. And believe me, there have been many re-tellings. I even wrote a Frankenstein story for Language Arts class last year. 

In honour of International Frankenstein Day this year, I'm digging up that story and giving it a fresh polish—I might even re-write the end, which is a good way to get back into the habit of writing, since school starts soon. My Language Arts teacher—Mrs. Kratky—always asks what I wrote over the summer break. She won't be surprised it's a monster story (I love monsters) but I hope she remembers my last Frankenstein tale, and thinks this one is even better. 

Gotta jet—it's time to start writing! 

Hey, do you celebrate Frankenstein Day? If so, let me know—I would love to talk about the movies and books you've enjoyed featuring that loveable creature. <heh> 

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 3 August 2018

Read All Day — For Your Health

It's true—according to research, reading is a more effective stress reliever than listening to music, going for a walk, or even spending time in the outdoors.

Not that I'm stressed (not even about it almost being Back To School time) but August 9 is National Book Lover's Day and August 10 is International Lazy Day—so I'm combining them for a double day of reading. All. Day. Long.

The timing couldn't be better. I admit I'm a little behind on my reading goals this summer. Maybe it's the heat distracting me. Or the fact that my sister and I have been spending more time at my grandparents's canola farm—me running, her baking with Grandma, and then both of us eating that baking.

Do you have the Superman Duffy graphic novel Tasting My Story? If you do, check out the recipe for MONSTER COOKIES. They're my favourite—and Grandma makes them every summer. And spring. And...come to think of it...every season. <heh>

Bet I could convince Grandma to make me a batch for my two days of reading! Gotta jet—calling her right now!

~ Chase "Superman" Duffy

P.S. How are YOU spending National Book Lover's Day?