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A Tuesday in the Life of Victoria Tong

Victoria Tong works full time in Allen ISD as an instructional specialist. She’s also a second-year doctoral student at Dallas Baptist University studying educational leadership. Her husband, Lewis, works at Movement Mortgage as a sales manager. Scarlett, 6, is in kindergarten, and Kai, 2, embodies everything about being a 2-year-old boy. The family lives in McKinney with their cat, Gato, who is usually up to no good.

6 AM Shut off the alarm and trip over our cat, Gato, on the way to the restroom.

6:15AM Scarlett, our daughter, is awake and playing in the toy room. I show her some love before reminding her that she needs to hop in the shower. She groans for a bit but relents. “It’s show-and-tell day, and I’m bringing my LOLs!” she says.

6:18AM Check email to make sure that it really is show-and-tell day. Confirmed: She was right.

6:25AM Gato is loudly meowing at Scarlett, who is now in the shower not cleaning herself, but sudsing the windows with soap. She’s wondering if the cat wants in while I’m wondering if he’s thirsty. I coax her to get out. I think to myself: Kids are funny—struggle to get them in the shower and the same struggle to get them out!

6:31AM Our youngest, Kai, is up and playing trucks. I say good morning to see if he responds sweetly or if he yells for Dada. Does anybody else have a daddy’s boy? He responds sweetly, so I play trucks with him for a few minutes before asking for a kiss and handing him off to my husband, Lewis.

7AM Everyone is downstairs and eating. Ever since Scarlett has learned to “make breakfast,” she insists on making it for both her and Kai. Looks like she “cooked” waffles this morning.

7:20AM I make hot tea and pry Kai away from TV while trying to wrestle him to put his shoes on.

7:22AM Gato is upset at his food bowl, and Lewis figured out why he was meowing all morning. All the food has been thrown into his water dish. Poor little fellow was thirsty after all!

7:25AM We each take one kid to school, so Kai is in my car. He says, “Go through green” or “Stop on red” through every light we pass. I respond to him or else he thinks I didn’t hear him and repeats it louder the second time.

7:40AM Kiss, hug and hand Kai off to his favorite teacher.

7:55AM I’m at work, and check my schedule. I have a meeting with the leadership cabinet in the library. This is where we discuss changes that might need to happen in order to improve our campus.

9:20AM Head up to the office to check emails and see which teachers I will visit with today. Looks like a full schedule!

10:15AM Meet with a few teachers about an upcoming project that they are planning to do with their classes.

11:20AM We finalize the lesson design and then run it by another instructional coach to make sure there are no gaps in the learning process.

12PM Lunch time! I bring my lunch, usually, unless it is crispito day. Crispito is more or less a fried burrito—think Texas State Fair food and you’ll get the picture.

1:15PM Attend a department meeting, where lessons are planned and data is looked at in order to make adjustments to meet the needs of all learners.

3:30PM Lewis texts me, “Which outfit today?” for Scarlett’s cheer practice. I tell him which one and to try not to let her fall asleep in the car on the way over there because she can be grouchy upon wake-up.

4:05PM Leave school to go and pick up Kai. I listen to a podcast on the way to de-stress.

4:20PM Watch Kai through the window and hope that he doesn’t see me. He doesn’t, thank goodness, because the entire class is doing a cute little dance and song, and he is actually doing the movements!

4:35PM We call Lewis on the way home. “She fell asleep in the car,” he informs me as they are driving to practice. Not good! I ask if he needs me to pick up dinner (since it’s Taco Tuesday) or if he made dinner. Kai hears me say those magic words and starts saying, “Taco Tuesday” over and over again. I guess dinner is decided.

5:20PM I check the time because you never want to be stuck in the Taco Tuesday line with a potty-training 2-year-old. I decide we are good on time and head through the drive-thru.

6:03PM Lewis is home, and we dig in as we catch up on our daily activities.

6:29PM I leave to go pick up Scarlett from cheer and let the boys bond.

7:01PM Scarlett is so excited because she got to pick a prize from the treasure
box, which means she got a balloon. She’s blowing the balloon up and letting it ripple through the air all the way home.

7:28PM Get home and find Kai running around half dressed with Dada on his tail.

7:33PM Lewis catches him, and we both wrestle him into his PJs.

8PM Kids are in bed. We take turns reading a book with them. I have Scarlett tonight, and I let her try and sound out some words on her own from Pete the Cat. I place Gato in her room and close the door.

8:15PM Lewis and I are on the couch trying to decide which show to catch up on. I like that we put the kids down early to give us a chance to unwind together.

9:05PM Go upstairs to get ready for bed.

9:35PM We pray together, give each other a kiss, and lights out.