We All Need Role Models

I’ve been blogging for less than a year; I’d like to think I’ve learned a couple of things during that time.  One thing that has jumped out at me is the similarity between my former life (teaching), and one of my newer pursuits (writing).  Both endeavors are primarily individual pursuits, and yet the support of others around us is the fuel that keeps our engines going.

When I came out of college, I was only partially ready for all of the challenges that awaited me in the classroom.  I had certain advantages that many others did not, having worked as a teacher’s aide for several years.  While many of my teacher prep classes focused on learning theory, the best education took place through my practical experiences in elementary classrooms.

When I was starting my teaching career, I learned that many educators were willing to take the time to help.  I shouldn’t have been surprised—teachers teach.  The false assumption I made was that they only taught their students, when, in fact, their influence went far beyond their pupils. 

Part of a teacher’s role is educating parents by giving them tips on how best they can support their children’s learning.  Another area that most teachers embrace is a willingness to help each other.  I discovered that many experienced teachers were more than willing to answer my questions, suggest curricula, offer advice, and share their own experiences.  Practically every teacher has those moments when a lesson flops, or you struggle with individual students.  It is only natural when you are starting to question your ability.  (Does this sound familiar, writers?)  There is nothing quite as reassuring as when we learn the best teachers had similar feelings.

There are random days during the school year when nothing seems to go right, but inexplicably, everything may work the following day.  You go home scratching your head, wondering, what did I do different today?  The reality is things happen with your students that have nothing to do with you.  I taught kids who worried where they were going to sleep that night or had parents in and out of jail.  How can those things not affect how a child is feeling and their ability to learn?

When I retired from teaching, I walked away, feeling that I wanted to give back to a profession that had been so good to me.  I felt a responsibility to support the next generation of teachers.  That was the primary reason I wrote a book. https://www.amazon.com/Pete-Springer/e/B07ZYDPJ3R/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0. I hoped that I could pass on some of the things I learned to help others.

Since I began blogging nine months ago, I’ve watched the same phenomenon in the writing world.  There is a whole community of writers/bloggers who are willing to share their expertise and experiences so that newbies like me can learn.

My writing critique group (John, Dave, Nancy, Jeanne, and Wanda) has taught me so much. They are all more experienced and better writers than me, and yet with their support and wisdom, I can see myself improving.  That feels great!  As with any endeavor, we should try to enjoy the journey as much as the result.

I have met many bloggers in the last year who are equally supportive.  I hesitate to start mentioning names because I know that I will leave someone out and then feel bad for not recognizing them.  I do have to make mention of one particular blogger, Sally Cronin, and her outstanding blog, Smorgasbord Blog Magazine.   https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/

Sally is one of those people who I would describe as an ambassador to her fellow bloggers/writers.  She puts out a fantastic daily blog and has been doing so for over five years.  The Smorgasbord is the perfect name because there is a little something for everyone.  I won’t list all of the individual columns and people Sally works with, but they are part of her terrific content and community.  Her greatest gift is she faithfully promotes other writers/bloggers in her column.  I know many, like me, admire her tireless energy, willingness to help others, and general kindness.  Not only is Sally an excellent writer, but she is one of those organized people with seemingly a million irons in the fire.

Many of the people I’ve met in the last several months in the writing community are because of Sally’s blog.  It may seem like I’m exaggerating for effect—let me assure you I am not.  I do not think there has been a day in the last six months when I haven’t thanked her for something.  Rest assured, Sally, I will continue to ask questions and seek guidance—you’re not getting rid of me that easily.  Thank you for all that you do.

103 thoughts on “We All Need Role Models

  1. Reblogged this on Jacquie Biggar-USA Today Best-selling author and commented:
    A wonderful letter of thanks to our own Sally Cronin of Smorgasbord Blog! Pete has put into eloquent words what we all feel- you’re the best, Sally!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 5, 2019 — 5:07 pm

      She is a true teacher in every sense of the word. Thanks for the reblog, Jacquie.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. I am delighted Jacquie and thank you for your lovely comment Jacquie.. ♥

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I can’t imagine the blog world without Sally! She’s an amazing resource and it’s wonderful to read how you thank her here, Pete. You both are amazing spirits xx

    Liked by 4 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 5, 2019 — 8:43 pm

      Awww, that’s nice of you. I keep expecting to read a blog about your wedding. Thirty-two years for my wife and me.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Thank you so much Christy.. I am very touched by this lovely post and the support ♥

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a lovely post about Sally, Pete. She was one of the first bloggers I met in the WP community and I have learned a huge amount from her about blogging, writing, sharing and supporting. A very special lady.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 5, 2019 — 8:45 pm

      Absolutely! Sally has been so helpful to me, along with so many other people. You are also part of that welcoming community spirit. Happy writing!

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Thank you Robbie and wonderful to see how your blog and writing has taken off over the last couple of years, You work incredibly hard to make it happen, and it is not something I think I could have pulled off when still working full-time. You are already a leading light in the community.. brilliant.. ♥

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Thank you, Sally, that is really kind of you.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Pete this is a lovely thing to wake up to and to start my blogging day. I am so pleased that you have found such a positive response in this community as you did in teaching. Many people think of blogging as a ‘hobby’ but for most of us it is an extension of our working lives and as such is incredibly important. It enables us to keep communicating, passing on our knowledge and experience and learning new skills at the same time. I am sure our generation will be the healthier physically and mentally because of it. I am very happy to have played a part in supporting you and thank you so much for your lovely post, it means a great deal to me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 8:52 am

      Retirement has given me the luxury of trying new things. If someone asked me about blogging a year ago, I never would have imagined that I would spend part of each day interacting with others and their writing. Now, it’s part of my routine. At the same time, I’m involved in a variety of other new pursuits, and having a balance is essential to me. One of the beauties of blogging is you can dive in full throttle or get wet once in a while.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This is why I don’t have my mobile phone connected to the internet, instagram or any other platforms. I work from my desktop and I switch it off and walk away. xx

        Like

    2. Such an interesting and wise observations here, Sally, Several, really, My friends (those who aren’t writers) have no idea how important the blogging world is to me, nor how much time I spend working on my posts and reading the blogs of others. They don’t “get” it. But I think you’re right; those of us who blog are healthier for it in many ways, and one of the most important ways is the way we all connect. Yay to Pete for shouting out what blogging networking does for us, and what YOU do to keep us informed and inspired. Thank you, Sally, and thank you Pete for this great post.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks Pamela and I cannot, for the life of me, imagine what I would be feeling or doing now if I had not started that blog back in 2012. There were a few false starts but once I got going I felt I had a whole new lease on life…hugsx

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Isn’t it wonderful how blogging opened up a hole we didn’t know needed filling? I’m so grateful that you started back in 2012. ❤

        Like

      3. petespringerauthor December 12, 2019 — 3:52 pm

        My pleasure, Pamela. In an era of disrespect so common online today, it is reassuring to know that there are plenty of good people left who can communicate in ways that don’t include going off on someone because he/she has a different opinion. Freedom of speech doesn’t give people the right to act like jerks.

        By the way, I enjoy reading your posts because you take the extra time to get things right. We all make inadvertent grammar errors, but what we need to make sure we nail are our thoughts—you do that quite well.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Thanks, Pete. One of my careers was that of a medical editor and managing editor of medical/health care journals, so I’ve received a lot of practice in the importance of editing/proofing. Thanks for noticing! I have extra help – some of my writing students read my blog post first thing, and if they see an error they let me know right away! ;-0 ACK. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord Blog Magazine and commented:
    The blogging community is a global village and we get to meet an amazing group of people from all walks of life who share their lives, experiences and skills. As a generation, those of us in our 60s and who would a decade or so ago, been put out to pasture, have a new platform to continue to be active, expand our community share our knowledge and to learn new skills. Isolation is not healthy and I know that I benefit every day from the interactions I enjoy online. Pete Springer has kindly written a post about me which is amazing and I am very grateful. It does apply also to so many of you who support, guide and encourage other bloggers and I hope you will read and appreciate how much what you do makes a difference.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 9:02 am

      Thank you for the reblog, Sally. I like how you put it, ‘Isolation is not healthy.’ The current political climate in America is one that teaches me we need to get back to respectful communication. I don’t want to be a part of that world. Interacting with people around the globe, civilly, is where it’s at for me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you again for a lovely post Pete. I do wish that world leaders had a better grasp of how well we all get along at this level, and that most of the problems with communication, tolerance and fairness are at theirs…hugsx

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Pete.. What a wonderful tribute to Sally she is all that and more and has given me a platform to share my recipes and to increase my own knowledge through providing recipes for her health columns… Something which I am loving… A wonderful, caring person who is an example to us all… You yourself are also wonderfully supportive.. Have a great weekend 💕

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much Carol and we have had a blast working together and I have been educated in so many ways about Thailand and the environment.. Blogging is an enrichment programme without a doubt.. Look forward to sharing more with you in 2020…hugs ♥♥

      Like

      1. Awww bless you, Sally 💕

        Liked by 1 person

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 8:35 am

      I’m pleased to have met you, Carol. It’s quite likely we would have never crossed paths without blogging. Connecting with people around the world through writing is a beautiful thing.

      Like

      1. Likewise, Pete I feel the blogging has opened up a whole new world of amazing people and places I never dreamed of knowing… Enjoy your weekend x

        Like

    3. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 9:06 am

      Thanks for your kind words, Carol. You have introduced me to a part of the world I know little about. I’m grateful for that but mostly for having the opportunity to meet wonderful new folks like yourself.

      Like

  7. I can only echo what everyone else has already said… Sally is indeed the perfect role model and also a very good friend…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much Jaye and Anita and for all your support with sharing and commenting on posts… ♥♥

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Always a pleasure, Sally…

        Liked by 1 person

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 9:09 am

      It’s like sitting down for a Thanksgiving meal and reuniting with old friends while meeting new ones.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. It is tempting to say to people ‘Fancy meeting you here’ but it does demonstrate how close knit we all are…x

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Without the calories! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 2:00 pm

      Thanks so much for the reblog, Anita and Jaye. 😎

      Liked by 1 person

  8. How true Pete, we never stop learning and in the world of writing and blogging learning is fun. I can’t actually remember how I first came across Sally when I started on WordPress – maybe she just magically appears like a fairy godmother! I have been a guest on Smorgasbord a good few times.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Janet we have certainly been in contact since 2017 in one way or another.. doesn’t time fly when you are having fun…and delighted you went with fairy godmother and not bad penny….♥

      Liked by 1 person

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 9:16 am

      I’m sure that’s how we met, too, and I’m grateful for that. You live in a part of the world I have never been to, and your blog is educating me about that, Janet.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. I’m with you, Pete. Love Sally for all she does for her fellow bloggers, and I also us my blog to teach!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Noelle..and I that philosophy about blogging is so important..hugsx

      Liked by 2 people

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 1:00 pm

      Blogs come in all different shapes and sizes—I suppose that’s what makes this so interesting. There are blogs for just about any topic or interest. Thanks for dropping by, Noelle.

      Like

  10. Great post, Pete. I often thank Sally too!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Stevie.. and it is always very much appreciated..hugs

      Liked by 2 people

  11. What a lovely post, Pete. In these troubled times, it’s heartwarming to remember that there are wonderful people everywhere who give generously of their time, energy, and kindness. I completely agree with your description of the blogging community and particularly of Sally. She’s a marvel and I really don’t know how she does it. 🙂 Happy Holidays and Happy Blogging.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Diana.. I am blushing at all the lovely comments and just happy that doing something that I love makes others enjoy it too.. hugs

      Liked by 2 people

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 1:04 pm

      Right back at you, Diana. Thanks for being part of that welcoming community.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. I could have not expressed my sentiments better than Pete. Not a day goes by, that I do not pick up valuable information from Sally’s blog. Wishing all readers the most joyous of holidays and a healthy, Happy New Year!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 1:07 pm

      You as well, Barbara Ann. I’m interested in learning more about your Little Miss History series.

      Like

    2. Thank you Barbara Ann and for all your support in sharing so many posts on Twitter, it is very much appreciated..hugs xx

      Liked by 1 person

  13. You are so write about Sally. She never fails to support Indie authors. I will never forget when she reached out to a fellow Indie whose publisher had folded, leaving the writers new first book afloat. Sally took care of it all. It wasn’t me but she has my unending gratitude for that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Jacqui I appreciate that. The truth is that I do this for my husband… If I am not fully occupied I get awfully cranky! Added to which, I have not had so much fun working every day as I have with blogging…hugs xx

      Liked by 2 people

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 1:11 pm

      It’s natural to gravitate toward welcoming and friendly people, and Sally is a model for that type of behavior.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. A wonderful post, Pete! I can so relate to your enthusiasm and gratitude for our teacher and mentors… Sally is one of the best! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 1:17 pm

      There’s so much negativity in the world, but there’s also much good. I prefer to focus on the latter. Thanks for being part of this friendly community, Bette.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks to you too, Pete! We are all so fortunate.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Cheers to this post Pete. I love seeing Sally get the kudos she deserves for all she does. I can vouch for some of the wonderful friendships I’ve made with fellow writers and bloggers whom I was introduced to at Sally’s blog. I also remember when I first started out blogging and publishing my first book, how I spent a good year learning the ropes and reading tons of articles to help me learn the ropes too. Paying it forward is the way forward for us all. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Debby and I wish the watering hole served real wine and margaritas but hopefully a fair number will get to meet up one day and have a blast..♥♥

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Well I know we will. And margaritas will be plentiful ❤

        Liked by 2 people

    2. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 4:17 pm

      I’m glad to have met you, Debby. I’ve already enjoyed two of your books (Have Bags, Will Travel and Conflicted Hearts.) I especially admire you for having the courage to share the latter.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much Pete. Likewise, happy to connect here with you too. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  16. That is just wonderful, Pete! Sally is truly the poster child for kindness and giving. Hats off to you for saying thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 6:43 pm

      Sally has been the channel for being able to connect with so many other great people. If it weren’t for blogging, I wouldn’t have met you or witnessed all the amazing things you do for kids, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I love how you describe what Sally does, Pete. And, thank you for your kind words and friendship. I feel the same way about you and your blog. If it weren’t for Sally… 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Thank you Jennie…love that.. and I have enjoyed my day in the spotlight here on Pete’s blog…lovely xxx

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Well, you deserve every kind word of praise, Sally. Pete’s post was a winner…like you.

        Liked by 2 people

  17. Great to meet you, Pete! Sally is our star. Thanks for letting her know that. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 6, 2019 — 6:37 pm

      I learned a long time ago not to take the good things in our lives for granted. Pleased to meet you as well, Colleen.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Thank you for so eloquently expressing the gratitude of all of us whom Sally has helped!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 7, 2019 — 9:59 am

      My pleasure, Liz. I’m glad that Sally can see from all of the comments how much she is appreciated.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I can Pete and it has been lovely, thank you again.hugs

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Very happy to be any help I can Liz..I enjoy finding out more about everyone…hugs

      Liked by 2 people

  19. what a nice tribute to Sally, and so well-deserved. I feel the same way, many of the people I’ve met through blogging have been through Sally and her web site. She is a wonderful advocate for blogging and a supporter of so many bloggers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor December 7, 2019 — 2:38 pm

      I’m glad (but not surprised) that so many others are chiming in to thank Sally. Thanks for adding your endorsement, Jim.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Thank you Jim and it works both ways, your support and visits are very much appreciated..x

      Liked by 2 people

  20. Well deserved recognition of all that you do. Thank you, Sally

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 7, 2019 — 2:40 pm

      Thank you, Richard, for adding your name to the long list of people who appreciate Sally.

      Like

    2. Thank you Richard and I really appreciate the wonderful support and comments.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Well said, Pete! You speak for all of us when you say she is a huge supporter of all of us writers. And we do appreciate all the time and effort she puts into her blog and promoting our work. I roo have met so many wonderful folks through Sally, including you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Darlene and delighted to be the go between in connecting interesting and entertaining bloggers.. lovely to hear.. hugsx

      Liked by 1 person

  22. petespringerauthor December 8, 2019 — 2:30 pm

    It is remarkable how many of us are connected. Sally is the best!

    I’m curious about the birth of your Amanda series. Where did your idea originate from? How long ago did you start writing books for children? I’m new to this arena, and I’m writing for middle grades since I worked with so many kids at that age level when I was teaching. I just finished the first draft of the book I’ve been working on. It ended up being a lot longer than I thought (51,000 words). It’s exciting to move into another phase (rewriting). I’d love to pick your brain a bit (petespringer77@gmail.com)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Pete. Tweens are such a great age to write for. Because I wanted to travel as a child but didn’t get on a plane until I was 27 years old, I created a 12-year-old who does travel. The stories are based on my travels, except they are way more fun and adventurous. I’ve been writing for this age group for almost 20 years and have been published since 2010. Good luck with the rewriting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. petespringerauthor December 9, 2019 — 12:20 pm

        Thanks, Darlene. I just picked up Amanda in Alberta. I’m looking forward to getting into that.

        Liked by 1 person

  23. Fabulous post, Pete. I agree with you about the similarities between teaching and writing. I also agree with every word you say about Sally. She is a star.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. petespringerauthor December 9, 2019 — 8:31 am

      I’m very appreciative of meeting you in the last year, Norah. Your School Reminiscences series was so great to read each week. It looks like that finally ran its course, but it was another way for all of us to connect.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It was a great way to connect, Pete. I thoroughly enjoyed the series. While contenders have dried up at the moment, there may be a few more next year. I have a special person working on it. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

  24. I enjoyed reading this so much, Pete, and look at the responses you received! Testament to what you wrote. I’m a bit late to the game, returning now from a week in the SF bay area. Didn’t see the sun once. 😦 But lots of sunshine in my visit with family and friends. Stay dry and celebrate the needed rain.

    Like

    1. petespringerauthor December 12, 2019 — 2:59 pm

      Well now, you were in my neck of the woods, Pamela. My wife and I live about five hours north of the SF Bay area, and the rain is a welcome sight considering it was only a month ago that many people were threatened by wildfires. I’m glad that there has been such a great response; Sally needs to know that she has helped and brought so many of us together. Happy holidays to you and your family!

      Liked by 1 person

  25. We share some professions in common. I’m a writer and author, like you. But, I also work in the education field. I’m a Guidance Counselor and I can attest to what you are saying about how incredibly helpful teachers are to each other as well as to new teachers. Education is a great field and very rewarding despite all its political issues. Thank you for teaching our troubled youth and I wish you all the best in your writing career.

    Like

    1. petespringerauthor January 7, 2020 — 5:38 pm

      I don’t consider myself a writer yet, even though we’re all writers in a sense. When I was trying to set up a website, I decided to purchase a domain. Pete Springer was already taken, so I went with petespringerauthor. Each time I see that I see that in print, I still cringe—it sounds egotistical.

      Guidance counselors are critical in schools—so many young people are looking for direction in their lives, and you help provide that valuable resource. Thank you for providing this help to young adults.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Don’t cringe. Embrace it. You’ve declared it to be so. You will make it be so. It’s not egotistical at all. Especially once it’s the truth!

        Thank you! Yes, students need a lot of help with emotional issues and I feel blessed to be there for them.

        Liked by 1 person

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