Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Moving Day

Did you notice nothing new was going up? I sure did. I apologize for having to move, and being hard to find (moving does that). Circumstances beyond my control were at work with Typepad. We tried to resolve the issue, but it seems unresolvable at this time. I'm disappointed because I was starting to get comfortable with their set-up, and now I'm going to have to learn this new system. Still, it doesn't seem too bad so far.

I moved the old posts over here, but I have not - as yet - moved the comments. I hope to do that, but it may be a few at a time. Feel free to comment here as it suits you, and I will integrate the previous ones as much as possible.

Welcome back, my friends, to the T0-do List, version 2, and hopefully more permanent. I'll be sending the new link by e-mail to my address list, and especially to Fran so that she can change the link on her blog. I'm truly sorry for the confusion, but I'm extremely happy to get to write some more!


April 25, 2008

What do you do when you are waiting? Its a good time to watch people. Its usually a great time to catch up on some reading. At least if that is the kind of waiting you are doing. You know, the doctor's office, the bus stop. Somethings going to happen and you need to be here early for it, or it goes by without you. We all know how that feels. At least I think we do. There may be a few who do not, but its one of those things you're the better for, like knowing that there is good because you have seen evil. You should know there is early because you have seen late.

But that isn't the only kind of waiting we do. I spend the time waiting for a tax return thinking of all the ways I could spend it. I could spend it two or three times, usually, but then it more than likely will go to get a little ahead on bills. What about the time waiting for vacation to come? I'm kind of doing that right now, waiting for school to end in about 3 weeks. My students are ready to call it a year, and they only get worse after graduation. I'm sure I was the same at that age, but had no idea how obvious it was. But then, I had no clue about a lot of things back then. At least waiting for vacation, I have work to keep me busy... ha ha ha. That seems rather circular, working to make the time until vacation (when I can stop working) go faster.

Then there are the stressful waiting times. Like for instance I went to work on my wedding day. People looked at me funny, why are you here? Well, I'm not good at that waiting so I tried to keep busy. I did about the same thing when I was pregnant, and was going to go to the hospital that afternoon to be induced. Of course I let my co-workers shoo me away that day. Didn't want to make them too nervous waiting for something to happen. There are people who wait well, and with good grace. I don't think I'm one of them, really. Oh, I do better than some, and I can - generally - distract myself, but still, I'm not among the waiters. Is there are skill to it? Can you get better with wisdom and practice? I just don't know.


April 24, 2008

A couple of years ago, Carl, Ron, Raine and I got the idea that we should tie-dye some shirts as a fun project. Carl did some research on the web, as he usually does, and came up with some instructions, and a source for good dyes, and a website for some people who were selling some amazing tie dyed shirts. We bought some, and have been happily wearing them since. Raine's has a spider on it. Mine has a peace sign with circles around it to make a flower. Ron's has a horse on it. Tye dyed. Yep. They had some really amazing stuff.

We ended up doing a couple of sessions of tie dye and enjoyed ourselves, and got some so-so effects the first time, and some really good ones the second time. Nothing amazing like the ones we bought, but we were pretty happy with them, and we had fun getting messy. Now, I'm thinking about doing some more this summer. I think we still have all of the supplies, so it pretty much means buying shirts again. But not too many, because - well, anything can be overdone. They do make good gifts, though, so we may play with that some.

Since I've been thinking about doing the tie dye, though, and I was going to tell you about that site, Kind Dyes, by the way, I was going to link their web site to you. So I went searching for it again. Finally found it, but it looks pretty broken, and hasn't been updated for more than a year. I'm kinda sad about it, actually. I hope they've moved and I can find them again, and if I do, I will definitely give you a link. These people did some very cool techniques, and their shirts are/were very good quality.

Going Fabric Shopping

April 23, 2008

Lately I've been doing it online. Fabrics at the shops I've been browsing are diverse and amusing, but not cheap. They also lack the tactile element of "how does the fabric feel?" How a fabric feels is often the deciding vote on whether I buy or not. I won't buy fabric that is too stiff, or too coarse, I want to buy fabric that feels good, and I also want it to appeal to me visually. I tend to like blues and greens and browns and more black than I used to. I also like "fun" fabric. My brother Carl gets more shirts than anyone except maybe me because he doesn't mind the fun fabrics. In fact there have been some that he really enjoyed. Well, I mean, I'm not out to embarrass him with pink bunnies in tutus or anything, but marbles and watermelon have both been featured. The last shirt I made him has cool Chinese dragons on it, and that fabric feels fabulous, too.

Ahem, so, back to shopping online for the fabrics... Without that visceral element, I find the fabrics, despite appealing prints, resistible. Which, right now, is a good thing. I have boxes and boxes of fabric already, and I'd really like to sew some of it up. I'd also like to organize the craft room INTO a craft room! That will have to wait for the summer. So, I don't want to add to the chaos yet. Well, any more than I have already. There's room in there to sew, and I want to keep it that way until I can pull out the boxes and see what is in them and decide what goes back to storage and what needs to be unpacked. SOMEWHERE in there are a lot of crafting books. EVERYWHERE in there are a lot of crafting supplies. So, while I can't resist the temptation of shopping, I can - at least for now - resist the temptation of buying.

Should have written earlier...

April 22, 2008

But I was busy playing Civilization. Civ 4 Beyond the Sword, to be exact. I just love exploring the world, and making discoveries and building my cities. I don't enjoy the wars so much, because I find them frustrating when the game cheats. Yes, it does. Still, I have enjoyed the various iterations of this game for about 20 years now. Did you have a computer 20 years ago??? I did. Of course my mom was a computer programmer at the time, programming satellites and the like, and proofing the code of other engineers and programmers on the projects.

I enjoy computer games. Heck, I enjoy games. Still computer games can have a gajillion pieces, and you don't have to keep track of them, the computer does that for you. There's not much picking up after yourself either, with the exception of maybe a disk, a rule book and a box. There are some games that I wish I had better versions of, like Mah Jong, which we used to have a very good and versatile one, but it was for an AMIGA, and I'm just not using that computer any more.

I like to play the massively multiplayer games as well, and have played several different ones. I'm not really good at them, and I don't like player vs player combat (because I'm not very good at them). Still, I have a good time, even (mostly) when I'm getting lost in the dungeons (which is inevitable). I like the social aspects of the games, but there are a lot of people that hide behind the anonymity and use it as an excuse to behave badly. I have made occasional in-game friends, and even met Ron (my husband) while playing on-line.

I think games - whether on the computer or not - can help us deal with and learn about history, and social issues. They teach us strategy and taking turns. They also help us practice having fun even when we loose, and winning gracefully. Oh, and taking over the world... mwahh ha ha ha ha.


April 21, 2008

I get to register Raine for kindergarten. Its kind of exciting, for her, as well as us (or at least me). She will be attending the school that is practically across the street from our house. The school where I went to first, second and third grade (and have the yearbook with the terrible pictures to prove it). The school where my brother (her uncle) works as crossing guard. The knowledge of her uncle being on the way seems to add a little measure of confidence to a new situation for her.

For the past couple years, we have visited the school for fund raiser breakfasts, or planning meetings and of course she has played on the playground. We thought that would help her be a little familiar with and comfortable with the school. Still, the classrooms will be different and new to her. An adventure! I'm hoping she will make some nice friends among the neighborhood children, and will have other kids to play with that are in easy reach. No! of course that doesn't mean I want her to forget Ezekiel... he's a special friend, and I hope they enjoy playing together for a long, long time. I think it is really, really, cool for her to have a second generation friend.

And really, she's just waiting for that summer vacation to come. Just a few more weeks, Baby, just a few more weeks.

Creating good habits

April 20, 2008

So, are you tired of reading about my yard work yet? I got three more bags of stuff ready for the grappler this week. Not much of that back yard that still needs raking, but no, I didn't finish. I should have worked on it on Saturday. Then it would have been finished... well, at least the back yard. It was cool, and there was a bit of cloud cover, and it would have been a nice day to do it, but of course I didn't. In fact I had a hard time making myself do anything on Saturday except play Civ 4. Tried to get a sewing project going too, and I couldn't work that up either... I would wander into the sewing room, then wander through the kitchen, stop to see what Raine was watching on TV, then back to the computer and Civ.

I've managed to get out in the yard some on Sundays though, and I did it again today. I didn't have long to work, as we went to my cousin's house for enchiladas. They were good, too. There weren't so many people there as sometimes we have at these family gatherings, so it was even fairly calm. We sat outside on the porch for a while and enjoyed a fabulous spring evening. We got home a little later than usual, but it was worth it. So, what does that have to do with YOUR yard, you may reasonably ask. All right, I'll wander back onto topic. I had the idea that I would have time to water a little after we got back, before it was dark. That was not so. So tomorrow evening I'll do a little watering in back.

Anyway, as I was raking, and telling Raine that she really shouldn't be swinging on the monkey bar while standing in the wagon (you know, one of those adventures that kids think up, and then they get hurt... but they at least shouldn't do it while the parent is watching), I got to thinking that if I could make my Sunday working in the yard a habit, then that would be a good thing. Of course there will always be something do to for an hour or two out in the yard once a week, so it would be a good habit. Of course my yard needs more than that, but baby steps, I tell you, baby steps.

Looking at the moon

April 19, 2008

I am not a night owl. I'm a morning person. (You can hate me for it if you want to, I don't mind.) Still, I have been known to work graveyard shift on occasion - though not recently, since schools don't generally run a graveyard shift, but I have worked other jobs. One of the things about being up so late is being able to look at the sky. Tonight we had a light cloud cover, that obscured the stars, but not the moon. I just love the way the moon looks through clouds,especially a full moon, and this one is pretty full. I also love the way the clouds look with the moon behind them. They glow. Its beautiful.

The night itself was pretty nice, too, cool but not cold, the kind you just want to sit out in. Fran and Lillian, its nights like these that you stay in New Mexico for, remember? It is truly a harbinger of summer. So I've stayed up waayyy past my bedtime, which is usually what happens on gaming night, and Ive gotten to see the beauty of night. Yep, I'm definitely putting that one back on the to-do list.

Really hot chili

April 18, 2008

Well, you can't tell by looking at it how hot it is going to be. (If you need to ask if the heat is from the stove, you're reading the wrong blog, sorry). You just gotta make something and then taste it. OK, actually, you can get some good clues about the heat level from your fingers if you handle the stuff while you are preparing it, and your nose, if you have some experience. Again, I bet you know this already.

Carl - my brother, for any who don't know - does a lot of cooking in our household (which he is a part of). He made some totally awesome chicken and green chili and hominy soup day before yesterday (Thursday, as we all know, is Carrillo's night), but it was hot! The kind of hot that makes you sweat. The kind of hot that sticks around in your mouth for a while. The kind of hot that you get to re-experience a little later in a way that I won't speak about, but I know you know what I mean. But it was GOOD, and we ate it, mmmmmm. But there was a lot of it left, and you know what? It only gets hotter in the fridge. Not only that, but it doesn't get milder if you add mild chili... you just have more really hot stuff.

But Carl came up with a plan. He made a casserole from it for dinner tonight. He added some cream of mushroom soup and some cheddar cheese soup, and some pasta shells, and put cheese (I'll eat almost anything with cheese on it) and fritos (for a little crunch) on top. It worked! and it was YUMMY. Ok, there was a little afterburn that you would notice when you finished eating, but the chili wasn't too hot to eat... didn't even break a sweat. So, now you know what to do when you've made something with chili that is just really too hot, but you can't bear to get rid of it because, well, it is after all, chili. Yep, that's right, e-mail Carl, and get a consultation.

Has it really been THAT long???

April 17, 2008

I've been helping out with the planning of my 30 year high school reunion. Yes, dahling, of course I look mahvelous for my age... I was an infant when I graduated. Oh wait, we ALL were, weren't we.

I wasn't one of the "in" kids in high school, and never cared to be. Still, I have kept up with several of my high school friends. MUCH more than I have kept up with anyone I met in college. Not all the classmates who I'm working with on the reunion. It's a rather diverse group - or I probably wouldn't be enjoying them so much. Wow, they are reasonable human beings, now that they are all grown up. I suspect I'm a lot more reasonable as well. I'm looking forward to going to the reunion, and touching base with more of my classmates, see what they've done with their lives, and all. See what they've made of themselves since last we met.

Is your high school reunion on your to-do list? What? Its not? why? Still not a size 7, huh. Me either, and never will be. Not rich and famous? got that covered too. No one will look on you will awe? Well, contrary to the movies (and maybe a 10 year reunion) no one really cares... or at least most of them don't. I skipped the 10 year reunion, myself, then really enjoyed my 20 year reunion. I got to find out all those teenagers I graduated with grew up (thank goodness) and became real people, like I finally did. REALLY! And they were interesting to talk to, and they were interested in talking to me. Of course I didn't spark some wonderful relationship that never could get going back when we were younger. I wasn't trying to. That wasn't why I was there, either. Who knows about this time, working on the event may actually make me some friends that I will enjoy for years to come, and wouldn't that be a nice thing?

Being Safe in an UNsafe world

April 16, 2008

So many things are beyond our control. Cancer strikes, or a super-flu. Someone isn't paying attention while they are behind the wheel of a car, or is impaired in some way. Disaster can strike. And it does. How do we live in this dangerous world? No matter what the laws are, what the rules of decent behavior, there are people who delight in breaking them. Who break them out of need, or ignorance or just because they can. And that doesn't even touch on natural disasters. Why do we not live in constant fear? How are we able to function at all?

OK, I realize that there ARE people who really don't function well - or at all - in the face of such danger and uncertainty. That reaction can hit any of us temporarily when a disaster strikes us or those near us. Still, most of us manage to get to work, and home again. We feed the family and relax a little and start new the next day.

A friend of mine wrote about a gun threat on the elementary school that her children go to, that was allegedly made by a middle school student. I read in the news about an elementary student who brought his uncle's guns to school in his pockets. He wasn't meaning anyone harm, but could have easily killed someone in play. Scary isn't it. Gun threats at schools are nothing new. They happened 30 years ago, and longer. Instantaneous relay of the news around the country and/or world is a lot newer. We hear about them more because we hear about a lot more of EVERYTHING. My friend was fearful for her children's safety, and who wouldn't be? She heard about the situation from the school the day after, which might seem like too little too late to her. On the other hand, the school should have been (and hopefully was) too busy taking care of the situation and the safety of the children in their care to alert the parents of the threat. Even if they HAD done that, it would have only made the situation much, much worse. Can you imagine the chaos of all those parents trying to come and get their children, and of COURSE they would! The school not wanting to let the children go anywhere that might be in the line of fire, and here are all these parents, even MORE people to keep safe, putting themselves in that potential harm's way. Can you tell I work in a school? Our school has planned and practiced for disaster, but I know that not all schools are so prepared. And there are some things that even planning and practice doesn't cover. Still, I understand her worry... and every parent has it. How do we keep our children safe. How do we protect those we would unhesitatingly give our lives for?

Sadly, the answer is we can't, always. We give them the best tools we have to cope with the world. We hope and we pray and we do what we can. We don't want them to be frightened and unable to face the world, so we have daily business, and we all go about it, and they learn that is what you do. Even when it isn't safe out there. Even when it would drive them and us mad to contemplate the possibilities too long. Even when the heroes who come to our rescue - if they can - are only as human as we are. Without the bad, you can't see the good. And we certainly don't want to give that up, do we...

Find the fans

April 15, 2008

Its hot here. Its hot IN here. In the computer room, I mean. Well, the fans cool off the processors, but then where does all that hot air go? Well, then open a window you say? Well, if there were screens on any of them, I would. The screens were a casualty of time and remodeling. Sigh. So its hot.

Well, what about a little air conditioning? you reasonably inquire. Ahhh air conditioning. With real refrigerated air. That sounds lovely. It WILL be lovely later on in the year. (That's why we got it, really.) But it is - as those who have it know - expensive. And not in the budget this early in the year, frankly. So, we're back to the same complaint.

But, I KNOW there are fans in this house. Somewhere. There must be, we've used them before. Combined with the lovely ceiling fans that we put in in the living room, and thankfully our bedroom, that should help a little. I hope it will help enough. At the moment, though, before I shed my clothing (YIKES!), I will be content with a shower and the thought of the fan in the bedroom cooling and stirring the air there. And I will look for those fans tomorrow!

Its times like these...

April 14, 2008

that make me feel like I should write something long and prophetic and science fiction-y. Something epic, where the good guys ultimately win back the land and the sky opens wide and the angels sing, and... ok, well, maybe not quite on that scale. Still, the possibilities are daunting. Our society could collapse. It could be the end of days! Dogs and cats living together! Wait. Hold it. Enough with the drama. Even so, how many of us feel like we are teetering on the brink of "interesting times?" Is it just me?

Gas prices are high, and getting higher. How long will it be until there are people who can't afford to drive to work? Well, in some places that isn't such a big deal, just hop on the public transportation and away you go. Saves parking and wear & tear on your vehicle at the same time. Its not that I have anything against public transportation, and I've used it. Would start again, if I was living somewhere that the public transportation system consisted of more than a few bus routes. OK, so I work out of town. I tried to move to a school in town last year, and didn't get a position, and since the district I would be working for in town is going to lay off teachers at the end of this school year, the prospects aren't looking too hot for a change this year either. I car pool, but it is a fluid thing, and the number of people changes with this and that. Still, its better than nothing.

What happens when the school district can't afford to pay for fuel for all of the buses they run? Who stays home? There may be some districts that would turn to the web... indeed there are districts which already are... but that might be problematic in the poor rural district where I work. Sure some families have computers, but not all of them. Not enough of them. Some of the students at this school depend on the food they get at school as well, THAT won't be sent through the computer line. Talk about inequities in education - among other things - that could develop!

I know, I know, I'm the type that uses their overactive imagination to explore all kinds of possibilities. Will the worst happen? Honestly, I don't think so, because however much big business wants all that money, throwing the middle class into poverty is not the way to make your bottom line look great in the long run. Those car companies, and electronics and clothing manufacturers are counting on us to buy the latest models and follow the newest fads. If there is a depression the likes we haven't seen for 80-90 years, their profits drain off... Or maybe their markets just shift to Japan and Europe, and soon all the corporations will be sending their call centers to the US... which would be OK, except we have those goofy accents... Wait! that sounds like another book I need to write!

To Read

April 13, 2008

I'm a reader, by nature. I don't remember not knowing how to read. I don't even remember that ah-ha moment of "oh, THAT's how to do that." I just read. There are pictures of me, quite young, like 2, looking through a magazine... not ripping (not reading either, but...). I've spent many pleasant hours reading, and imagining and being all those other characters, at least for a while. I've often found that during the school year slows down as other school related tasks take the available time. Also, as many of you know or remember, having small children can take your reading time as well. Recently (like, oh, the past 5 years) I haven't read nearly as much as I normally do.

This semester, I have been working with students who among other things, need help with their reading skills, as I have talked about before. Well, I found as I tried out the software my students were using, that my skills had rusted a bit as well. Oh, sure, I pegged the vocabulary section. Anyone who knows me won't be surprised a bit at that. The there are the reading speed exercises. I DIDN'T peg those. But I have taken the time to practice them, while my students are working on theirs. Guess what? It helps!

So recently, I've been READING!!! Joyously, happily, even - dare I say - speedily. It feels great, to once again be in touch with the to-read pile of books that I had kind of lost track of. Even more, I am excited to do some of the school related reading (ahh the joys of lit class) and thinking of very cool activities to do with them. I mean, the next time I'm teaching senior English, The Canterbury Tales are going to be a lot more interesting! And research is - I think - going to be a lot less painful, at least for me... ha ha. I think I just shifted my brain into a higher gear that I had forgotten about, and it feels great! Reading is definitely on the to-do list again!

The conference

April 12, 2008

I attended a conference for the last day and a half. I was hoping to get new ideas and strategies to use with my students and maybe suggest to my co-workers. I did get a good suggestion from one of the presenters... while we were both at another presentation. I'll try it, and I am hopeful that it will help the student. Still, I felt like there was nothing really NEW! that I heard.

Most of what I got from the conference were realizations. Most of what I heard, I had read about before, or had heard one way or an other. It was kind of disappointing in a way, but then I realized that it meant that what I had been learning on my own was on the right track. I realized that I need to really be accountable, and measure results with this class I'm teaching. I mean I KNEW that but I REALIZED that it meant we really needed to put some means of measuring progress in place so that we can keep closer track of it, and really determine what the gains are for these students. If one thing isn't working, the next thing should be tried. That is what I will mostly talk to my principles about as a result of attending this conference.

Now, here is my pet peeve for something like this conference, and thankfully, I only had a moment of this feeling at the conference, although I have had a lot of this feeling at others. Presenters spend so much time setting up their situation and telling you who is having a problem, that they never get around to telling you HOW TO FIX THE PROBLEM. I would rather we all take the problem as a given (I mean, here is the topic of the conference in some cases, I think we KNOW its a problem). Don't tell me how to figure out the problem, tell me what I can DO about it! That, to me, should be the point of the presentation.

Anyway, I came away wishing I had learned more, but feeling that I knew more than I thought I did in the first place.

Sweeney Todd

April 09, 2008

See it. Its out on dvd now. I've seen parts of a previous production... with Angela Landsbury if I remember right, but THIS production, by Tim Burton, with Johnny Depp leading a wonderful cast, is truly outstanding. The care taken with set, wardrobe and make-up only enhances the experience. Yes, there is violence, and gorey spouting blood and bodies falling on their heads (that was probably the most disturbing part to me). Yes, I saw it on the big screen, and it was excellent, and I recommended it to several friends at the time. Now, though, now you can watch it at home, and learn the songs by heart and sing them while you are driving to work and....

Actually , if you haven't got the big screen TV, find someone who does, and offer to bring the popcorn. This is a movie that deserves it.

PS I won't be posting for the next couple of days, because I will be out of town without a computer. I'll be attending a reading conference, and reading a book or maybe even two. I'll try to arrange for comments to be posted in the mean-time, but your patience is appreciated.

Education on my mind...

April 08, 2008

I am an educator. I want to be good at my job, as I feel one should do one's best in any employment situation. Education was not my first choice, but - although I love science - I was to lazy and immature in my early 20's to study properly to do well in those classes. Believe it or not, I have been known to actually read through some of those biology texts long after I've been done with the classes. Am I a nerd or what? Still, growing up with several teachers in my immediate familial vicinity, it was suggested numerous times that I should become a teacher. Well, of course I balked at that. Yes, I know there are those of you who will smile, knowing that my daughter will practically automatically gainsay any proposition put forth to her, not wondering at all where she should come by such a trait.

Still... I work with high school students, some of whom are among the poorest in a poor state. Some of whom are those who could most benefit emotionally, spiritually, and financially from the education they are being offered. Students who refuse to become engaged in the educational process, or concerned with the issues that affect them today, or will affect them in the future. There are days when I nearly despair that I am doing any good at all, and also times when there is a breakthrough that is a triumph for one or another. One of the students that I have been working with this semester has gone from reading at a 5th grade level to an 11th grade level. She's been working on this for close to two hours a day for about 10 or 11 weeks. She will be classified as a junior next year, and is really poised for some personal success!

So, how do I feel about the career in the sciences that I did not pursue? Well, I thought about being a doctor, and I think that it is a good thing that I am not one. I probably would do well as a research scientist working in a lab somewhere, but I really don't want to spend all my time being the doctor, living with the doctor, putting in all those hours of practice that take away time with your family and friends. I suppose that in a way, I'm just too selfish. I like being an educator, though. Good thing there have been wise people in my family, and that maybe, just perhaps, I am becoming one of them...

What to do, what to do

April 07, 2008

Well, I actually had been thinking about other things, but Dev, your post in response to yardwork seemed to strike a chord with me. I kept thinking about that creepy neighbor, and wanting to offer advice (you know, the kind that you would not follow anyway). I really couldn't think of any. I DID think of a smart-ass remark, like "If I act creepy will you come spread grass seed in MY yard?" Of course that's because my yard could use it (and isn't covered in rock already... at least not on purpose), and I'm lazy. Could you spread some fertilizer too while you are at it?

Still, what DOES one do about someone whom they find creepy? I mean there is general avoidance, and it generally works well, I find. But, what about those un-avoidable situations? The next door neighbor... the close-in-proximity co-worker. the friend of a partner or spouse... I mean I'm all for following those "this person is creepy" instincts, but what if you must deal with them anyway? Open door policy, meaning I only deal with you when I'm near an open door? Always have a witness? What ideas and suggestions do those of you out there have? (OK, I know readership is limited at this point, but still, I AM an optimist...)


April 06, 2008

Even when you're not perennially behind on it like I am, yardwork is always on the list. All that raking, weeding, planting, and, well, probably not so much mowing this year. Yes, that's how bad my yard is at the moment. Years of disappointed neglect in the backyard, which used to have a decent covering of grass, have taken their toll. The remodeling project did nothing to help. Still... take a deep breathe and consider the possibilities. A clean slate. We can plan what we want where, and not have to feel guilty about taking apart someone else's hard work, its been long gone. So what's the problem? The plan, the money, the work... you know all the usual stuff.

Its not that I hate yardwork. I mean, I have flashbacks to the forced labor of childhood sometimes. You know, your parents request, then cajole, and finally threaten your happiness (if not well-being) to get some minor task done so poorly, and with so much complaining and whining, that it would probably have been less work for them to do it themselves. Yeah, the good old days. Now, I like being outside, and as with all such tasks, I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment on getting it done, and having things look better. And it is good exercise, and not more strenuous than you make it yourself. SO, WHAT is the deal about doing it??? (She asks rhetorically)

See, its the inertia. Yeah, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. And it isn't just MY inertia, its the inertia of those around me. Why should I go do all that work while they aren't working? It makes sense, right? As an excuse. And here's the thing, I realize it is an excuse, and nothing more, even if I can amuse myself with the clever wording. That is, after all part of what I'm working through, learning, sharing in this blog. How do I change ME. How do any of us change ourselves? How do we convince ourselves to do the good things, the RIGHT things, in some cases, regardless of what others are or are not doing? THAT is the lesson, I think. Then, we (I) learn to carry it over to other areas, I hope.

Anyway, I did some raking in the yard this afternoon. 4 bags of yard waste for the grappler on Tuesday, yay. No, I didn't get the whole yard done, but what I did get done looks better than it did before, thank you. I feel good about getting out in the air, and the sun, and the breeze. Spending time with my daughter, and the dog, and the yard. Still, I don't get to cross it of the list yet... or - really - ever.

What NOT to do

April 05, 2008

What was I thinking? After all this time of being me, you would think that I would know just how useless I am after midnight. Waiting until after Saturday Night RPG to come up with a blog posting is just, well, silly.

Role Playing Gaming has been something for me to do since I was in high school, way too many years ago. I still enjoy creating new characters, and "being" those characters. You get to see how brave, adventurous and heroic they are... or they are not. Sometimes that is even more entertaining. "what? OK, OK, I'll stop helping." One of my continuing favorite rule systems is still Dragon Quest, although we are adventuring in the weird west of Deadlands currently.

I'll probably talk about them more some time, but for now, bed calling...thinking fuzzy... eyes closing...

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One thing crossed off...

April 04, 2008

Well, this is the beginning. That scary first step off into the void, or perhaps one more voice in the mad cacophony that is the Internet.

What is it for, this blog? So many things to do, and so little time to do them, and here I am typing away at my keyboard, wondering if anyone else has this a similar to-do list for their lives and could use a sounding board, a word of helpful advice that they are sure not to follow, and maybe a little bit of support as the wander into the bright light of RL.

I DO have a to-do list. Its lodged in my brain, fluctuating and morphing, depending on day, hour and mood. Getting healthier is on my list, hovering near the top. I love crafts, and creating things brings great personal satisfaction, and I have a couple of quilts in mind. Sewing some new pieces for my wardrobe, and generally considering my personal style for those garments, IF I have anything that can be classified as a personal style. And the yard! Don't go there... no, I mean it. It's a desert out there, and I sure wish it were more inviting. It needs a compost pile, and a garden to put it in. With the way the economy is going, I'm beginning to think the kitchen garden will be back in style sooner rather than later, and since we won't be able to afford the gas to go out shopping, we'll all have more time to spend in our yards, right? On top of all of that... or maybe adding to the list are all those home projects that all homeowners have (and usually consider an adequate to-do list all on their own). And writing. Let's not forget that written conversation that I intend to join in a new way. I've read and responded to the blogs of others, slowly letting the experience get under my skin until I felt I had to initiate a conversation or two, or, well I'm sure you're getting the idea.

Welcome to the list, what will we cross off together?