Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Nothing to say.....

It's hard to be witty this day. It's hard to come up with an ironic twist on the world on this day.

August 31, 2004... Donna died.

Today thousands are dead and are yet to be found under the rubble of Katrina.

Today, New Orleans is on the verge of being GONE. GONE GONE GONE. They can't fill the levee breech. It will fill until it is at the same level as the lake. It may be easier to fill it in and rebuild on top of the rubble...... A new Pompeii if you will.

We still haven't heard from Kurt and family. Emails have been sent on the hope he can eventually check email. Email to his employer in Fort Worth have been sent. Cell calls don't get through.

Do whatever you can. These people could not possibly need more help.

Monday, August 29, 2005


Gulfport, Mississippi is underwater. I went to Google Maps and it appears that there really isn't any chance of living in Gulfport and your house not being underwater right now.

We have friends in Gulfport.

Kurt is a UMC Pastor. He, along with his wife Claudia and their three children, lives in Gulfport. They were hoping to visit again in October. They were hoping to be here for The Big Crush in Amador.

I hope they are able to come and drink good wine. I hope we hear word of them soon. I pray they are safe.

I also hope that the next time when authorities give word to GET OUT, that every person heeds the warning.

God be with the rescuers who now risk their own lives to save those who stayed behind.

God be with all in Katrina's path.

High School, It's Official

Background: Pleasant Grove High School opened today. Not just for the year, but for the very first time. It was mired down in a shload of NIMBY lawsuits and should have opened last year at the lastest. Preferably the year before. Then it just wouldn't quit raining this year. To say "construction was delayed" is putting it mildly.

So PGHS opened for the very first time today. No grass in the interior of the campus. The "quad" (which is a circle) is fenced off because it is an unfinished hole in the ground. Construction equipment and supplies take up a large portion of the parking lot. Fortunately, there is no current need for "student parking" since no student is old enough to drive. The "School Loop Road" worked well...for those who could read signage and follow the instructions they gave. For example, NOT A SINGLE SIGN said to "stop in the middle of the turn lane next to the red curb and let your kid off". That's why the Sheriff's Deputy had a chat with that idiot woman who stopped right in front of me and caused me (she MADE ME!) to honk my horn. (note to self: truck horn on VW Beetle would still be a really good idea) Pick up was orderly and easy. But Kaitlyn will be riding her bike so I won't need to experience this whole car dance every day.

Homework was issued. Honors English, Geometry and Biology are the last three classes of the day. Which makes for a LONG afternoon. Choir is Kaitlyn and 12 other girls. PE doesn't dress out until Thursday, but it requires a BINDER of its very own. BINDER??? For PE? Yep. Gotta do more than just show up for PE to get an A nowadays.

Advocacy teacher is "ok". Hopefully she will end up being more than "ok" since this is the teacher assigned to Kaitlyn for as long as she is at PGHS. It is to ensure that every student has at least one teacher who knows them and knows them well.

Choir is sparse, but has one of the best music teachers in the district. So learning will happen and hopefully they will gain some new members.

Tomorrow? Tomorrow she will add Spanish. Starting at 7am.

Tomorrow they might have the bells working. Today they were still testing them. Landscaping will continue. The cafeteria was done... which was iffy last week. It will all get done and by the time she graduates there will be over 3000 students on that campus. Right now there are about 900. It's a small campus..... I don't know where they're gonna stash 'em all.

But I think she's about ready for bed..... ;)

Katrina, Part II

If you want to help....

UMCOR Hurricane Relief

Cash. Hurricane buckets. Volunteer your time and muscle.

As you can see, the main distribution center for relief supplies is in Katrina's path...... so that's problematic.


Be gentle Katrina. We have friends and loved ones in your path....

Take a moment today and pray for those in her path. Overnight, the SuperDome started losing part of its roof. The SuperDome is where those who had no place else to go, went. No doubt the poorest of New Orleans.

Later I will get a link up to UMCOR....United Methodist Committee On Relief. They catch those who fall through the cracks. They just left, after Hurricane Andrew, a year ago.

But you can walk into any United Methodist Church today and give them a check marked for UMCOR in the memo section. It will get there.

UMCOR will need volunteers too........

But now... I have to take my child to high school. She is bathed. She is dressed appropriately. Her hair is in pigtails (thanks Dani, good idea!). She is READY. So are her parents.....

Thursday, August 25, 2005

What's Next?

On Monday our eldest child starts high school.

In four years, she will be off to college. Maybe it will be the local JC, maybe it will be in Tennessee. Time will tell.

In eight years, our youngest child will be off to college as well. That is still a long way off. But during those eight years both children will be less parent dependent for all things. Well, all things except money. Already they can do many things on their own. As it should be, we are becoming less necessary. They will not starve to death, for example. They can shop for (given the money to do so) and fix most any meal. They don't need mommy to pour the milk or use the stove any more.

They have the capacity and the skill sets to wash and iron their own clothes. Motivation is all that is left to make that scenerio complete.

Basic personal hygiene? They can do it. They don't need mommy to wash the hair or remind them to get all the nooks and crannies.

There are still essential life skills that need perfecting...and those will come. Although Kaitlyn will tell you.... if you need a composite asphalt, three tab roof put up, she's your girl. Flashing installation...her specialty.

But what happens when "parent" is more guidance than constant supervision? Who is "mom" when "mom" is more title than job description?

I don't know.... but I'm trying to be sure that I have something in the wings. Someone to be besides "mom" when the people who make me mom aren't living in my house anymore.


There are those who firmly believe that change is BAD. B.A.D. Doesn't matter what the change IS, it is bad.

There are those who firmly believe change is GOOD. It's the BESTEST EVER!!! Change just to's all good!

I fall somewhere in the middle. It depends on the change. I told some friends last night that I prefer the change heavy in quarters, light on pennies. Not only is that true, but it is also illustrative of good change vs bad change.

Pennies. They are small and annoying. But necessary. If you just hoard your pennies in a jar (the 5 gallon water jugs are good) you can eventually collect some big bucks. In other words, small changes can eventually make a big difference. You don't need to go out and run a marathon today. But you can (you, meaning me) go and walk around the block. One row stitched on a baby blanket isn't going to make an entire blanket. But one row every day will eventually make an entire blanket.

But small changes are the least for me. I don't want to walk around the stupid block. I don't want to just do a row a day. I want to be able to run a marathon and thus be lean and fit enough to do so...RIGHT NOW. I want that blanket DONE.

Quarters. Good change. It's 25 times better than pennies. It doesn't take much of this kind of change to see big results. A jar full of quarters is going to buy a LOT more than a jar full of pennies. A new job. A new relationship. A change of relationship. These are big changes. Often made up of smaller, but significant changes along the way. No one wakes up and says "Damn. I LOVE my job, so I'm gonna quit and go get another one!" No one wakes up and says "My marriage is the let's get divorced!" No one says "You are the best friend I've ever had and I love you dearly and I love spending time with you. So I'm never talking to you again!"

These changes come about because smaller, but significant changes have occurred. The job that was once great...isn't. The marriage that was weak. The friendship that endured...crumbles.

But with those changes come rebirth. I know someone who's husband left her. BIG change. Half dollar change. She was crushed. But she recently bought a house with her own income, her own credit. It is hers and hers alone. (and her daughters') It was change she did not want. But now, she can't imagine going back.

A year ago, my friends and I went through some very drastic changes. (I've spoken of it before) We are now, a year later, better than before. But we are facing changes again. A year ago, we could only speculate about what could be. Now we can see it. We can taste it. But this change is going to be hard too. So many things to think about. So many things to consider. Logistics. Feelings.

Good change. Bad change.

I am in the camp that sometimes change feels very very bad. But later...sometimes years later... when one looks back.... change ends up being good.

But that all depends on what you do with that change. If you leave it in the jar it is just more clutter in your life. Cash it in, take the money and have a party, it's good change! Wallow in the pain of it all and it will stay bad. Wallow for a moment and then MOVE ON WITH LIFE...?

It's all good.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Do You Read Blogs?

I read blogs. I suspect you read blogs too. I'm psychic like that.

Recently, I've been made aware that there are those who not only do NOT read blogs (shocking!), but don't find them at all interesting.

I only read blogs that are fun to read. Not that they don't have their occasional pity party.... but generally speaking, I'm laughing when reading. Sometimes I need to make a mad dash to the little duck's room.

Small insights into daily life away from my own.

The daily laughing aside, I think that's what is so interesting about this whole blogging business.

Small insights into daily life away from my own. In otherwords, I get out of my own whirlwind, if only for a moment. It may not get my laundry done or help me figure out what to do with a pound of ground beef...again... but it makes me think outside myself and my world and the craziness of my life.

Over there....on the right... is a list of blogs worth reading. Some of them have links too. Follow the links...check in now and again with these strangers. And after a fashion, they won't be strangers.

And if you aren't reading this.... sucks to be you.

Kaitlyn's Mother Hates Her

Kaitlyn's mother hates her. Absolutely. Without a shadow of a doubt.

It's obvious. Only a hate-filled mother would inflict such dire torture upon a child.

Only a hate-filled mother would INSIST that her 13 year old daughter learn to braid her own hair.

Not to mention insist on said hair being clean. EVERY SINGLE DAY!

Kaitlyn's mother hates her.

Kaitlyn's mother is evil. Pure evil. Surely she will burn in hell for this.....

Monday, August 22, 2005


In precisely one week from this very moment, Kaitlyn will be between her 2nd and 3rd period high school classes. We won't know WHAT those classes are until one week from today however.

High School. I remember high school. I'm kinda thinking that maybe Kaitlyn shouldn't go to high school. I'm quite sure she shouldn't be allowed to go to college. She SHOULD be going to Kindergarten.

Kindergarten is good. Everyone's your friend. No one has ulterior motives. You get a snack. You go home at noon.

What's that you say? She has to go to high school? Hmph. She WANTS to go? Yea... but that's just because she found out that they'll be extracting DNA and separating DNA fragments using gel electrophoresis. Don't know what that is? You either need to watch more CSI or Google it.

Kaitlyn is still in bed at 9am this exactly one week before school starts. In one week and one day, she'll be out of the house by about 6:30am. Zero period Spanish starts at 7am. It will be rude awakening. But hellsbells.... I was out on the field ready for marching band practice at 7am. At least she'll be in a nice warm classroom.....

High School. Go Eagles!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Easily Amused

As we were on our way back down the boulevard, Kaitlyn and I were stopped at the EG/EGF intersection. (what does it say about ME that this is the second blog entry referencing this intersection????) (pitful)

We noticed that we were surrounded by cars that were either RED or WHITE. So then we had to be extra observent for red and white vehicles.

We tried to be extra observent for green cars, but we didn't see any green ones.

There were a couple of brown ones.

One black one.

One yellow New Beetle (not the one we were in).

But it was "drive red or white" day.

We found this HYSTERICAL.

And Kaitlyn observed..... we are easily amused.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Busy Busy ....sorta

I KNOW you've been missing me. I can tell. I'm perceptive like that.

But I've been busy. Busy not so much in the sense that I've been overly productive. Well, at ALL productive, truth be told.

But I've been doing more hours at the knit shop. I've been trying to knock down the UFO count (two more done) (still haven't finished the hat).

I really have very little to show for my busy-ness.

Kinda sorta hoping for some actual productivity next week. Norm went and cleaned out the garage today. I think it was a challenge. Hmph. I suppose we are just about at critical mass..... we shall run out of underwear at some point this week if I do not do laundry.

Hmph. Those slacker kids.... they say indentured servitude is illegal. That's what you get when you go and send your kids to school. They get all edumacated.....

Wednesday, August 10, 2005


That's what Elaine calls me.... She's a real cut-up.

But Wowie Zowie..... I have been Yarnista-ing my tail off these past few days. Boss Lady had to have some opening came up and she grabbed it. Which meant us worker-bees had to have some crash training on all that needed to be done.

I drew the short straw (meaning my regularly scheduled work days) and had both "Late Night" events on my watch. Which meant LONG days.

It also meant long hours dealing with the yarn. This is not good. This is very very bad. I have PLENTY of UFO's already. I do NOT need any other UFO's. But gosh.... I am REALLY liking the dark (very dark) brown coat with light pink trim idea.

Some of the UFO's have deadlines. One for a friend...well, for her baby... One for the fundraiser auction at church. The others? More fluid. I should probably get the "perfect for holiday parties" handbag done BEFORE the holidays. And if I'm going to make that wrap for the same events... I should at least decide what color silk I want to use. Silk. FIVE SKEINS of silk to boot. The pattern makes me hyperventilate almost as much as the thought of 5 skeins of silk....

I have fallen down the rabbit hole........

Monday, August 08, 2005


I've been yammering at some people to get over their needle phobia and donate blood. Get over yourself and save a life.

I said I would, but I can't. They won't let me.

Then someone said her friend just started donating again.... she only had to wait a year.

So I went to the BloodSource website (the agency that does the collection for this area) and it didn't say anything about chemo being a lifetime ban.

So I called. NEW RULES...about 2 years old. As long as it wasn't melanoma or a blood cancer.... one can donate if one has completed treatment for over a year.

I have an appointment in an hour.

I've used a lot of blood in my day..... Now it is time to give some of it back.

You should too.

Addendum: It's official. BloodSource has a pint of my A Negative blood. I can donate again on Oct. 3.

Saturday, August 06, 2005


If your fat spills out over your bikini bottoms and makes you look like the a muffin top.... don't wear a bikini.

Elaine was musing on body hair on women. Why do we find it unattractive and why is it such a pain in the ass (and other places) to remove? I dunno. But I think the question is why haven't we evolved away from body hair all together? I stood in line behind a man who shaved his head, yet had a hairy back. I didn't understand that either. Body hair on men isn't all that attractive either..... we should let them know about our tricks on removing it.

Your best friend will not only take her picture with you when you are dressed up in some crazy get up, but she will have on her own crazy get up too. And she won't care. And when you turn 21 and your mom hauls out this photo of the two of you taken on your 10th birthday, you will just laugh and laugh....much like you did when you took the photo.

People who are under age 20 and make minimum wage should not be entrusted with security at any sort of amusement park. It's just wrong. On many levels. And if it hadn't been a special day for Emma I would have demanded a supervisor. When we checked bags at the Olympic Track Trials, we weren't allowed to remove items from women's purses. And I am quite sure that if I was packing a gun, I wouldn't be hiding it on my bare arms, but perhaps under a pant leg. (arms wanded with a metal detector but nothing below the waist on anyone) Idiots.

I'm glad that what we thought was a heart attack was just an asthma attack. But anyone placing bets on the odds of getting Normy to the doctor for ASTHMA? Yea, I doubt it too....

Thursday, August 04, 2005


I was meaning to do this early on in this blog. However, I just plain forgot. But today, someone who has been lurking in the shadows came back into plain view and reminded me. So here is my warning:

I use big words. I went to college and learned the big fancy words. I rarely do it on purpose, but I use them on a regular basis. "Scholar Words" they've been called.

I never thought these words to be of particular import or thought one needed a significant level of intelligence to use them in normal conversation. Then there are the entire subset of words that I thought once you successfully mastered in, oh, I don't know... THIRD GRADE, you could use them properly.

For example: I shall never ask you for advise. Nor will I advice you of the situation. When you argue with me, I shall never declare your argument mute. I won't bother blogging about when I loose my keys. And if I EVER decide to get one, I will at the very least, spell tattoo with the requisite three "T's". (btw: "requisite" is a "big scholar word")

Last, but not least, if you don't get the following joke, you should probably just keep it to yourself.

Half the people you meet every day have a below average IQ.


I love Jerry. Jerry is Elaine's husband. He finds way cool stuff on the internet. Today he pointed me in the direction of Google Maps Pedometer Hack.

Seems my usual route of about 2 miles is well in excess of 2 miles. Okay then...

It also seems that a twice daily jaunt over to Bel Air will do the same trick of getting about 2 miles of walking under my belt. Since I'm over there at least twice a day should make it easier. I just gotta go and come back rather than stop on my way elsewhere.

Hmmm... that may be my Achilles Heel. Planning ahead.

But hey... Thanks Jerry! I don't feel so bad about not taking the big walk now. I can just go get a mocha in the morning and some cookies in the evening and be good!



ADDENDUM: I hate Jerry. Jerry finds way cool stuff on the internet and then all of sudden...I'm not getting those two hours of my life back. Hmph. ;)