It seems I've come across the following sentiment a ton lately: balancing school life and nonschool life in order to not burn out and to not put all your "happiness" eggs in one basket.
I'm having a pretty good year this year, and I think part of it is that every week, I have things OTHER than school to look forward to. So just in case (and it'll always happen at some point) I have a super crappy day, then I can recharge with my nonschool existence.
Let's see ... Tuesdays I have my favorite (and only for now) yoga class at 6pm. I have to follow my new year's resolution and actually leave school by 5:40 in order to make it, but I've been pretty good so far. Thanks to my guardian angel across the hall that comes in and taps at her watch to make sure I don't backslide :).
Wednesdays I have tap dancing and Lindy Hop lessons at night. That's always fun. Either I feel like the galumphing dolt in tap class, or I rock it. Either way, fun. And in Lindy Hop. Social dancing. Fun.
Thursday mornings I treat myself to breakfast out at a popular local restaurant. I've been doing it for 3 years, and the waiters know me, and it feels like home. I read the paper and do the puzzles and ease into the day. Something to look forward to.
Fridays, well, there's most always nachos and liquids to look forward to after school.
Also, our whole math department has the same period off at the end of a day, so we hike it over to a local place for debriefing and caffeine.
And on my daily 1/2 hour commute to and from work, I look forward to either listening to a book on CD (thank you simplyaudiobooks) or learn "Italian Like Crazy". Which reminds me .... Italy! Spring Break! Lucky Dog!
These are many of the things that keep me sane during the crazy times.