Many of you are in Columbus, enjoying all the #AASL15 has to offer. I’m still here, at work, because – for me, I do not claim to speak for anyone else! – that conference has lost its meaning and it felt like an unnecessary expense for me or MPOW. Instead, I’ll be at ALAN in a couple of weeks, getting one last blast of YA literature goodness before starting on …. drum roll please… the Alex Award Committee.
We’re busy weeding and discarding (NYT Indexes, anyone? What about some Reader’s Guides? no? no takers?), rethinking what needs to be on our shelves and where collections are placed. We’re also establishing our Instagram and Twitter presence (follow us!), in part with the help of one of our community service volunteers. Resource Guides are being built as a few research projects trickle in. Luckily, we have until January before they really need to be 100% there. Students considering Senior Projects are also a focus, and I really need to create a spreadsheet or database to help them find places that they could intern or volunteer or research at or in or with (yes, that’s a lot of prepositions at the end of that there sentence).
In between working on all of those, the life of the school goes on, with assemblies and student productions and other events. I’ve done one of my chaperone duties (a fact of life in boarding schools, and this is far less onerous than MFPOW’s was) with another on the horizon. Plus reading! According to Goodreads, I’m 15 books behind schedule so either I lower expectations for this year or I get back on that couch and read read read (you know which one I’ll be choosing, right?).
Finding that life/work balance is important, and I’m seeing my younger staff members do a much better job of it than I did at their age and stage in my career. It’s inspiring that they get how important family, friends and outside-of-the-bun interests are, and how they consciously make time for that. Despite all the work stuff on my plate, I’m not taking work home with me as much (reading does not count!). That’s the lesson I think we all need to learn: when to work, when not to work and how to find a balance between the two.