Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Happy April Fool's Day!

www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/aprilfool/ If you didn't check it out before, check this out today. Funny stuff.

I am no good at pranks. I get to laughing and give it away. So I won't be pulling any. I do my part for April Fool's by being gullible and the perfect victim. Someone always gets me. But then, I work in a school... prank central on this day. Many of the pranks are so lame they make you laugh, but that's because the perps are only 6 or 7 years old... and only a truly evil person does not laugh at a child's attempt at wit. I'll let you know what they do to me after it happens.

Today is my last Irish day for the season. I celebrated this time with my new Flogging Molly and Pogues CDs... bless you again, cousin J. Tomorrow all the Irish history, fairy tales and legends come off of the bulletin board. Time for something sappy and cute. This month we are doing "farms" as our theme. It's in concert with the music teacher's deal. (Oooh, a pun!) I think I'll have the kids design cows... that is give them blank white cow shapes and they can color them however. We get cows who look like clouds, space, spiderwebs, etc. :-)

Today was made much brighter by the arrival of the 2009 Shife model. I love babies. They smell so good and are so great to cuddle. Sigh... I am very happy for them. Many blessings are sent that way.

Sadly we lost a friend late yesterday... but I only found out about it today. He was a very kind and lovely man. My heart aches for his family.

Then I saw a friend in the town to the left who showed me photos of her new grand baby... the son of a soldier that used to be one of my students. What an adorable child! That lightened my heart again.

I decided that it's time to go see a priest. I thought I'd start with "It's been a bazillion years since my last confession..." and hope that he has a sense of humor. If not, I'm a gonner anyway. I've got a bazillion years of sins backed up. I remember them all and will have to force myself not to smile as I recite them. What is the point of being ashamed of what we have done willingly? Okay, there are a couple that I'm not proud of, there's always a few of those. But most sins were fun in the committing. Why else would I sin?

This is life. The good, the wonderful and the woeful. A bit of wicked here and there. People coming and going. It's been a strange day. The end of March always makes me a tad sad. I don't know why.

Dmarks asked us about March coming in like a lion and out like a lamb... which it was doing at the start of the month. Today the weather was as strange as the day... rain from mist to pouring and the end of the day cloudless and sunny... but the winds in the gorge were wicked.
I guess I'd have to say that judging by the sunshine and the wind... it left like a lamb with attitude. It made me feel good anyway. Even the wind makes my heart race a bit. Alive!

Today I wish for you all to have your March go out like a lamb. I hope that any pranks played on you tomorrow will be kind in nature and fun to experience, not hurtful. Please feel free to share any pranks past, future or present you have to offer. I love to laugh at stuff like that.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Penguins - BBC

Penguins - BBC


I found this and got such a kick out of it that I thought I would share. Hope you enjoy it and I hope I haven't screwed it up by adding to the post. :-)

This is where this is from... giggle... www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/aprilfool/ Enjoy!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Spring Break is Over

Yesterday was a busy day dedicated to tying up loose ends for the vacation.
Bear and I went to get Squeaky and bring him home. This we did quickly and successfully... to the amazement of others involved in our delivery of the boy.
Then it was back home to leave him and head out for the town to the left. The baby needed a big boy hair cut. It was time. So we did that and he was so good we were not sure that he was not a foundling switched for our wiggly guy in the night by fairy folk. Now he's the little man!

After that it was Chinese food out and a quiet night at Bear's house. Watched the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards of all things... twice. YIKES. Doe it amaze anyone that Twilight won for best movie? Me neither.

Cousin J got me some CDs of more punk... Pogues, a rare Murphy I do not have and some Flogging Molly that I don't have. Yes, it's my Irish thing. Today I down load them into the MP3 for walking use. I am happy. It was a nice surprise. What a sweetie he is.

I got to do a little reading before bed, so my lizard saga continues to my great joy. It is my plan to devote hours to it today while I do my mountain of vacation laundry and prepare for going back to work like normal people. I'm missing my vacation already. I know, I know... what am I griping about? In a couple of short months I will be on a nearly 3 month vacation... complete with pay checks (because I have already worked for that pay by the time vacation comes, not because they pay me vacation pay). That is my prime reading time. I garden and read. Boy am I ready for that.

I am also starting to plan my trip to Germany next Tax-mas. Did I tell you about that? Well, a kid that grew up in my house as much as in his up the street... B-wreck's best friend... is stationed in Germany. He's a sergeant there with a wife and a couple of darling little girls. They have invited me to come and visit. He's going to take off two weeks while I am there and we will get in the van and see Germany and perhaps a few other close spots. I am so excited to be going somewhere outside of this continent. I know I have a ton of stuff to do... get a passport, shots, whatever. I have to find out exactly what and get on it.

I am ending my week exhausted in a good way. I hope that you are all feeling as content. Big smile.

Friday, March 27, 2009

I thought it was very nice of them to welcome me in such a personal way. ha.
This is the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newp
ort, Oregon. I decided that you might enjoy the photos from here... and well, I took a ton of them. Many are too awful to show off, but some aren't too bad. I hope you enjoy them. It was a fun place to visit. I just wish the sea otter had been more cooperative. He is my favorite of all of the sea beings. The seals moved to fast for my camera to capture. Sorry about that. They were fun to watch. An intelligent person would have written down the names of the fish, etc. That would not be me. You'll have to guess. As always, if you click on them, you can see the details. :)
The funny looking sand/ camo things are rays that you can pet. They feel rough and slimy at the same time. An odd feeling. The wild thing is a lion fish. You can see them at any pet shop of quality. There is a cuddle fish looking shy. Sea horses are in with the neat pointy crusty thing that I can't recall it's name. The last fish glows in the dark. And well, this crab made it clear that it did not care for me at all. The feeling was somewhat mutual. They are like giant sea spiders... super ick.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

BAck from the Beach

Not real sure how this is going to look on the blog. These are my three favorite photos. One is the outside wall of a building In Lincoln City.

These jellies are cute little dickens. They, and a ton of other photos were taken... mostly badly... at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport. The baby loved these. He kept singing the Sponge Bob theme song. So he made some connections here that were important to him.

Now this is my beach. The one I chose to walk on every morning and evening. There was not a lot of interesting rock formations or things. Just ocean rolling in and out again. The weather was very fickle... sprinkles and down pours or cloudy. This morning we walked in sunshine for the first time before hopping into the car to come home. We collected shells, but did not find any glass floats. This town has several glass blowers who make floats to leave on the sand... for folk to find! It used to be that you could find ones that came all the way from Japan, but now they use plastic ones and who wants a plastic float? So the local artists provide new numbered floats that are collectible. I could have bought one, but I'll just keep going back... too cheap! ha

We almost got to have breakfast at Lil' Sambos but my son-in-law decided it was too crowded. Boo hiss! I wanted to revisit my childhood. Oh well. He's not the sentimental type I guess. In fact, here we are at the place to get great food and we ate at Taco Bell, Neil's Pizza and Mc D's. All the while my mouth watered for fish and pancakes with tiger's butter! Ha. We did have one nice meal at a Mexican food restaraunt. We all love Mexican food, so it was something we could all agree on.

I love the ocean. It has a way of completely renewing you. The waves relax you and the air invigorates your system. How can anyone be bummed out at the ocean? I don't know. All I know is that I am home again now and looking around... seeing everything that is in need of my attention. Feeling up to the task of spring cleaning for the next day or two and getting my head wrapped around the coming summer months of freedom. What will I do this summer? I think I'm going to get to California for a visit home and that is exciting. Geeze I feel good! But nice to be home too.

And hey... I kind of missed you all too! Big grin!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Taking Squeaky Away

It's now Monday here. The Bear is coming today to help me take Squeaky away. He and his geek freak friend, L spend all holidays and vacation time bouncing back and forth between our homes. This year I get Spring Break to myself and he goes to L's house.

L's family moves a lot. Every time I take him there they have just moved or move while he is there. So it's always a map quest adventure. I've mentioned before that I can get lost anywhere on my way to a new location... but once I have been there, it is etched in stone in my head and I can find my way home and back again with ease.

You might think that because of this the Bear has taken pity on me and come to the rescue of poor old get lost mom. Nope. She worked her last day on Friday. She is going back to college to become a nurse and has some time off before her classes begin. (I am so proud of her!) She's bored. She has a nice new car to drive and I am glad to ride in it. It will also help sedate Squeaky who firmly believes that we will never be un-lost once I get lost. I will be glad too to see my precious baby Mikey, who has not yet figured out that there might be something better on earth than grandma.

I know that I talk about my boys all the time, because they are so often with me. I don't mention the Bear that often. She lives in the town to the left. We will hang out there tonight while her dad does his meeting thing. It's not always parking lots, though I love the reading time... especially now that the lizards have attacked and the Tosevites are just getting it together. She is a big part of my life too and sometimes when I use the term "boys" she is lumped in there too. Like the boys say... she is the toughest and the meanest among us. I know, girls are not supposed to be that way, but she is also the funniest and most energetic.

This is the girl who, after clothing shopping, sat in the back seat with her new panties on her head and waved to the cars that passed us by( in middle school). She was the homerun queen in softball. Also the girl that mom had to leave work to go to a local bad place where mom had to storm the house to physically drag her out. For a time in high school she was deeply depressed. We have gone rounds. There was a time when I was scared silly that I would lose her to alcohol abuse. My boys have been saints in comparison. She was not an easy child. My hair shines with silver from this girl! As difficult as she was, I love her a bazillion times more.

Here is the wonderful part. She got through it, even the humilation of biserker mom. I could not be happier with who she has become. Life is an evolution for each of us. As long as the evolution moves in a positive direction, we are doing well. Today will be a fun day that I am sure will involve Chinese food from Fortuna... the best place ever. We will laugh ourselves silly and baby will entertain us. A good segue to our coast trip tomorrow.

It is a good day for being thankful for family and friends. Hard work sometimes but pure joy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Yesterday was a nice day. The Bear and baby Mickey came to town for breakfast. Squeaky and their dad accompanied us and it made for a noisy and somewhat messy meal, but happy. After we dumped the guys off, Bear and I took baby for a ride. The day was lovely, skys blue and the sun fell in rays through the forest trees. It's a great time of year here with the green buds starting to show on the sleeper trees. I'm watching for Trillium to spring up but have not found one yet. Took baby to the park. Can't wait to hunt for shells with him at the beach.

I got up and walked this morning for the first time in several days. Took my red nose, box of tissues and beat feet to the sounds of Gutter Mouth. Did great until it was over and I was back in my car where I attempted to hurl a lung. I survived and it wasn't as bad as it has been. I am on the mend. Walking makes me feel good. Nice to be back at it.

I am still mulling over the last Battlestar Galactica. Maybe it's the mom in me that screams... Noooo you can't get rid of the technology! What if a baby is born with type one diabetes? What happens if measles make a come back? Who knows what germs lay dormant there? It's not the technology that created wars and the need to dominate. That is human nature and all this means is that you'll have to start creating weapons from scratch again. Back to hacking up folk with broadswords... though much more entertaining to watch, if you ask me... not a good choice.
And really, I do not want to live in a world without running water, toilets and proper showers. Those things will take time to develope. But perhaps I misunderstood.... what do you get out of the end? Did you agree with it? What did I miss that was important?

Hey, have a wonderful Sunday. I hope that yours is restful and fulfilling in some way that delights you.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Karma Kicks Back

Revenge is a dish best served cold... and left up to God to carry out. That is my personal philosophy.

I have a brother-in-law who is a major creep. I was buying a house from my mother-in-law... no contract... shame on me. This guy and my sister-in-law got power of attorney for her and took my house. I'd lived there for 15 years and paying on it. I cannot tell you how devastating that was. This happened when my ex was sent to camp... when I was still in shock and easily victimized. I know my faith in husband's mother was lame, but in my family we do not screw each other. I did not see that as possible. Dummy me.

Well, you can fill your life with vile and bile and spew hate, but it hurts you... not the people who screw you. Besides, being the bad catholic that I am... I pick and choose from the Bible what I wish to live by. One of the things I choose to believe is that vengeance belongs to God, not us. If you let it go and give it to God that eventually some sort of Karma occurs.

The big Karma kick back has finally happened. I just learned that my brother-in-law had the stupidity to rob a bank... and get caught when someone finked him out after seeing the video. Here is the real bug-a-boo... a different sister-in-law and the robber's daughter both work for the banking institution that he robbed. Now how totally stupid is that!

I can't say that I am sorry that this happened. Truth be told, I do not feel a grain of sympathy for the man. You reap what you sow and all that. (Of course I do not believe that all bad things that happen are because someone deserves them... no way. Good people are crushed by life all the time unwarranted.) But in this case, I feel it is just desserts. All I can say is don't drop the soap guy!

That's the way it goes

I got up this morning to swollen ears and hives all over me-self. Oddly enough, this is not that unusual for me. The ear thing... I do not know what that is about but it comes with the hives. The hives come from being sick. My body's rage against illness.

Despite the mess in the mirror, I drug myself to work, only to retreat after first period to my home. I get up, dabble at the computer and go back to my chair for a nap. Twice I have drained all the hot water from the tank by standing under the shower. I know it is not good for hives but the heat feels so good. It's a weird illness. Achy and tired mostly. Not too bad. There is much worse out there.

I have begun my Spring Break by coming home. Squeaky is still ill but on the far side now, almost well. He will want me to take a map quest trip... which never goes well for me, as you may recall... and drive him to his best friend's new home. These two are geeks to the nth. They are connected at the headset just about every moment he is off from school that he is not doing homework. Squeaky will take his computer, game machines, etc. with him.

Next Tuesday I am supposed to go to the beach. I am looking forward to that. But will have to be well by then. I won't make baby Mikey sick. Go Tuesday and come home Thursday. I will be sure to take my camera. The coast up here is more wild than the beaches I am used to. I love how the wind whips the waves around. No one will be swimming. Shell collecting and surf watching. Do the tourist thing... but I will throw my own trash away, unlike our tourist here. I will be an annoying camera geek instead.

The rest of my time I will pretty much be alone here with Squeaky gone. Max works. Even when he doesn't, he stays busy the way that twenty-one-year-olds do. It will feel weird. Maybe peaceful?

What will any of you do for Spring Break or do you get one? I'm lucky that I work in education and have these vacations all over the place. It was the ideal job when I was single mom... if the kids were off, mom was there. Bummer for them. ha. If not Spring Break, do you have any plans for the weekend? Or something special coming up?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Crud hits home

Everyone now has the crud.

We are in varying phases. Squeaky is about done with it. Max just has the residual cough left. The boy's dad is in the ague phase and I'm at the tickle and ache phase.

Oh what fun. I had hoped to miss this. I still may be better off than the others if I can shake it. (She says hopefully...). So we are back to soup night. This time out of a can. Food does not even sound good and I sure don't have the energy to cook for real.

So, in light of this crud, I am going to post some photos and at least give you something to look at.

Sorry, no bon mots. Heck, no brain cells!

I'm going to take my Tosevites, their mud ball and invading lizards and go to my favorite chair and ottoman, where I will wrap myself in my blanket over my awful way too big sweats and doze off and on and dream of that reality.

Oh... The middle photo is my Mikey... turns 2 on the 7th. Grandma's sweetie. The one on the left is of a spring gone berserk. The one on the right is my river... way in back is an island that is off limits as a respected burial place... or so I've been told.

Let's hope for a better day tomorrow after a good rest and canned, low sodium, no fat, no flavor soup. The silver lining is that I always drop weight when I get sick. Bonus! ;)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Short and Sweet

First, a traditional blessing...

May St. Patrick guard you wherever you go,
and guide you in whatever you do--
and may his loving protection be a blessing to you always.

Okay in my home this is a day for respect for our heritage, family and fun. We'll be having corned beef and cabbage and watching movies... Darbie O'Gill and the Little People, The Quiet Man and last but not least, the more modern Snatch. Good food, laughter and the most important people.

Today I wish for you the awareness of the love of your family and a day rich with the blessings that brings.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Sunday Regaining Balance

Well, survived the concert and trip. Feeling pretty good about that... you can check last post if you are interested. I intend to attend their next show at Christmas time. They only come out for Christmas and St. Pat's to celebrate. All are local northwest citizens and all belong to other bands. Or check them out here: www.myspace.com/kmriaband and the other band we heard, Minus 5 at : www.myspace.com/theminus5 . I truly enjoyed both.

I slept in. I did not walk. These are remarkably unusual events for me. But I figured as much as I moved around the evening before, I more than made up for the walk and my body could use a rest.

The kids dad took me out for breakfast and I got the lecture about getting lost... when he gave me clear directions... how could I possibly miss that turn off... blah, blah blah. And I had a map!
Himself is pissed at my ineptitude! Go suck a toad. This is how I am... part of my charm. ha

Let me tell you about me and maps. I do not get them. Especially in P'land. This place is a mess. Streets travel in directions that defy all logic or even description. Big graceful arcs. One way street hells. It has about a thousand bridges and two big rivers that angle through it. So it's not like you can tell yourself, I'll go east and get there. You can start out in that direction, but you end up south west or far north. You'll be flying along a nice fat boulevard and by the time you can say "What did that sign say?" suddenly you are on a bridge to a part of the city you don't want to go anywhere near... and it will take you an extra half hour to get back.

Sometimes I think that P'land is a big science experiment and we are the rats in the maze. I'm the confused rat the scientist clicks his tongue over and wonders why that rat can't manage. Oh, I don't know. I live in a town four blocks wide! Yet, I do not get lost in San Francisco... and it's not small at all. I was never meant to be a Duck or a Beaver. A bad transplant.

Whatever. I get lost. When my kids' dad was off at "camp" and I was raising four of them alone, I used to say to them "We're having an adventure..." I didn't want them to stress out over mom not having a clue where we were. By the time their dad was back in their lives five years later, my kids would say to me... "Mom, we aren't having an adventure are we?" and I began having to confess when we were lost. It has become a big family joke. The Bear even won an essay contest writing about mom getting lost.

It is terrible and it is true. I can get lost anywhere. But my one saving grace is that while I can get lost on the way there... I am never, ever lost when it comes to getting home. I can be utterly without clue one as to where we are and there is a homing device in my head that leads me home quickly and safely. It took us an extra hour and a half to get to the concert last night than it should have and I got us home again in record speed... even happily tired.

Today I am having a quiet day. The sky is a flat grey without cloud definition. It is pouring off and on with some wind to rage here and there. I have decided that four crackers are a fitting lunch with 17 grapes... my limit... with a bit of smoked salmon. I will make a nice veggie soup for diner and maybe some garlic toast to dip in it. Sprinkle fresh Parmesan on top. Yum.

Light fare after a heavy night. Put the world back in balance. My afternoon is dedicated to restful reading... tweek my reality. The soup can simmer and I can stew in words. Taking Chance just was on TV. I had a good cry off and on over that one. I have liked Kevin Bacon forever, inexplicably. The old stick in the mud is crashed on the sofa and lectures are over. I can deal.

Oh good... the rain has turned to hail and it sounds like gravel is being poured over my house in a box. Yep, I know I'm home. Can't wait for March to stop being a lion and turn into the lamb. Hope your day is bright and shining at least in spirit if not in weather and your blessings far out number your complaints.


Minus 5 and K.M.R.I.A. were awesome!

It's very late... long drive home, exhausted and happy.

My feet are going to be puffy tomorrow and I may break my rule of never missing a day of walking. But we hopped, we danced, we clapped and sang.

The ballroom is a historic building that has a special floating dance floor that is amazing. It moves with the people, so even if you are not dancing, it's moving and so are you. Reminds me of that old Bad Company song... Thirty Days in the Hole (takes a breezy whore and a rolling dance floor...).

Anyway, great time. Stupidly left my camera charging on the kitchen counter. That was upsetting. But it's in my head forever. I'm glad that we went.

I did get lost on the way there. This is common practice for me. I can always find my way home, but getting anywhere by map... forget it. Some guy with a heavy accent in a Squishy Mart told me how to get there and saved the day.

Was glad to see that there were others in my age category and not just spring chicks. Lots of Irish! Lots of kilts. Lots of booze everywhere. Boy my head is going to be slow tomorrow. I'll post late and try to make more sense then.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


I must be feeling chatty lately.

This morning when I got to my school building to walk things were weird. For one, lights were on that are never on. There were four cars in the lot that I know by sight... one teacher and three student owned ones. Inside doors were open that are never left open. And absolutely no people inside the building, though that took awhile to figure out.

I read a book sometime ago by a guy named Gavin De Becker called The Gift of Fear. He helped set up the FBI profiling system. Interesting man. In it he talks about many things, like how some people can suffer horrendous abuses and still come out to be normal productive members of society. While others suffer abuse and become abusers themselves. He gave real life examples of the things he spoke of and it was very instructive.

The point of the book was to illustrate how our minds work to help us survive. Particularly our most basic instincts. He went back over interviews with victims of rape and pointed out where their subconscious minds had warned the victims of the danger looming ahead of them, but because we have become a dependent and trusting society, we often ignore our survival signals.

Now, he is the first to say that not all victims of violent crimes are warned by their brains to the danger... no, it's not about blaming the victim. Some folk do bad things to others with no warning, no rhyme or reason at all.

But we need to be aware and to listen to our bells and whistles. We have those instincts for a reason and we need to hear them. You know what I am talking about. We all have those moments where you walk into a room and it feels wrong. You can't quite put your finger on it at first, but your brain has given you a mental tap and the hair on your neck is standing up. That's the time to take a giant step backward and think it through. Unfortunately what we often do is think "That's odd" and keep on moving right into it.

Here is an excellent example of what I mean. I graduated from high school a year earlier than my class... and immediately moved away from home at just barely 17 into the college ghetto.
This was an area between the college and a highway/main street that had been purchased by the college for eventual expansion. You could rent a home, apartment or whatever very cheap.
My rent was only $75 a month. Taco Bell sold tacos a block away once a month for a dime. Cheap living.

I rented a Quonset hut. They are those funny army buildings that are made of corrugated metal and look like long log cakes with curved tops. I painted the end of mine to look like a rainbow. The only one of its kind within miles and miles. It appealed to me by being odd beyond any expectations. I had two living/bedroom rooms, two small kitchens and a hall with two bathrooms in the middle. There was a door in that hall that could be locked to separate the two halves and make for two tiny studio living spaces. My friend, Edd agreed to live in the back section and I took the front or visa versa depending on what end of the hut you showed up at.

I got my brother and dad to leave all my stuff there... including my grandmother's antique brass bed. I had no curtains up yet and you could peek through the windows and see that bed glinting in the sunshine. I came home from a film class in a really great mood and let myself in the door. I looked around and something was not right, but hey... I was glad to be alive and feeling great, so what could be wrong? I scanned the room and saw my table had finger prints all over it. Goodness, my mother would freak at the mess of that, so after years of training to take clean to the level beyond sanitary... I got the Pledge and immediately solved the problem. The disturbance of the force was smoothed out and things felt fine. The table shone, mark free.

I took about two steps away to go plop onto the bed and stopped in my tracks and began to really and truly look at my living/bed room. My bed was gone. I looked around the entire hut, as if a brass bed could get up and move itself. I called Edd at work and had him pulled off the line to ask if he had done anything with my bed. Yeah, right. As if he would take it away! My brain was unwilling to believe that anyone had been in my hut and taken my bed.

The truth wins out. Not only was my bed gone, but so was the best evidence of who took it... the guys who left finger prints all over my table that I had to instantly clean. How totally dumb was that? When I told the cop that I'd cleaned the table he looked at me as if I had an extra boob in the middle of my forehead... with a fascinated horror... that anyone could be so lame brained.

I never got the bed back, though I did get to go to a house and look at a bed that turned out not to be mine with the cute cop and that worked into a nice dating situation for awhile. Having the bed back would have been better. This bed was so cool...

A different roommate might have been better too. Safer anyway. I had a bassett hound named Poppy who lived with us and Edd had a German Shepherd we'll call Bee. Edd cut a doggie door into our door that was big enough for my 6'3" friend, Marty to crawl through easily... so he often did. Edd didn't want Bee to have to crawl to get in, so he cut the hole big enough for the dog to stroll through easily.

But I could never have traded Edd... he was such a character. The only guy I know who wore nightgowns with pride and asked if he could sleep in my half of the hut when the transformer blew up above our house... it scared the bee-bop out of both of us when that thing exploded. No, he was not nancy... he was manly-man farm boy open to new ideas like soft flannel nightgowns that feel so good against your skin. If someone brought me candy as a gift, Edd ate it before I could get a piece. He drove a Gremlin! He was funny and kind and generous despite how it sounds. Always willing to wake me up at 3:00 a.m. to make him stroganoff if the mood struck. But just as likely to decide it was a good day to take me for a long drive to the snow or out to feed the ducks at the lake. Edd was a hoot.

Anyway, there you have it. We need to listen to what our subconscience tells us instead of grabbing the Pledge. If something feels wrong, it probably is wrong somehow. This morning at the school I entered with caution. The building looked odd but felt okay. I still did my walk with caution and my headphones down low so that I could hear other noises. Eventually I decided that they had been doing some painting and that was why some of the doors that were always locked were open. The cars belong to students and a staff member who have gone to do something... a competition of some kind likely and they met there before taking off in a school van... sure enough one van is missing. All was right in my world, but it never hurts to be careful.

Tonight Max and I go to K.M.R.I.A. and I am tickled pink about that.

dmarks-- By the way K.M.I.R.A. is from James Joyce's Ulysses "Will you tell him he can kiss my arse..." and Myles Crawford's "He can kiss my royal Irish arse... Any time he likes, tell him". It's a play on M.R.I.A. Member of the Royal Irish Academy. The Pogues used it too... you are right about that. The Irish phrase I think "Pogues" comes from is pog mo thon (the o is long in all... sounding like pog moe ho-n as the t falls silent) that means kiss my arse. You can see how that would sound very much like Pogues Mahone. Very clever folk!

All--Have the best day today that you can! Remember what's not going right for you is probably not as bad as what's not going right for someone else. It can always be worse, be thankful in spirit.


Friday, March 13, 2009


What a charmed day!

I get to work and find that one of my co-workers has left me a chocolate orange... you know they come in a gold wrapper and you slam them and they break into orange slices.

I find Jason the cat on Cat Blog Friday and print him out... the high school kids made copies and Jason floated all over the school today, delighting all who had the good luck to see him.

Lunch was great, shared with three teachers that I like very much. We got to talking about SNL's version of Jeopardy and could not stop laughing over the phrase "Ummm... what's light urple?"

Shared the chocolate orange with the high school English class to keep myself from eating it and because I love to give people things. (You know giving is the gift the giver gives to herself. )

Went to the market where two of my ex-students who are roommates paid for our fix-ins to make corned beef and cabbage if I would make them a batch too... and so the briskets are a-boil as I type. Such a deal!

I got home and found my book that I have been eagerly awaiting had arrived along with a small pot of yellow primroses. UPS guy grows them in a greenhouse. I left him a baggie of Giant Texas Red Hots. He stops here a lot. I love to order stuff.

If that is not a charmed day, I do not know what is. I am full of happy. Hope you all are too.

The Toy Dolls - My Baby Is A Battleaxe

This always gives me a giggle. There isn't actual footage of the band, but I like the song. Hope you enjoy it.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Changed my mind... here is something better...

A few nights ago we came home from the town to the left, by a less traveled road.

There used to be a tiny town here. But little by little a group known as the Friends of the Gorge, who do not live here, began to buy up everything. Their goal was to return the old growth forested areas to the forest. One lone home still remains, a hold out against the "Friends".

This small graveyard is one of the other few things remaining. Fortunately for those here, the Friends have not tried to move them anywhere. It is hard to tell from the photo, though if you click on it, it does get bigger, but this is a sweet and private place of peace. I like to stop here. I like to leave flowers and to pick up trash that tourist leave behind.

The other photo, the one on the left, is the road home. I can't tell yet what it looks like on the blog, but I can tell you that this photo looks like how I feel about my home... it is the light at the end.
A good place to be.

I did not care for the post I did earlier. So I removed it. I think only Citizen read it so far. It was about an odd portion of my life that I decided was best left more private. Not because it was terrible but because it would require too much explanation to clarify.

Anyway... apologies if you read it and now wonder-what-the-heck? I'll still answer any questions you may have had about it. I'd rather that than confusion.

I hope your home is the light place at the end of your road. Good night.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009


(The robot in back is me.)

Working in a library I am obviously into books. It’s a job that I truly love and I’m one of the few people I know who hop out of bed happy that it’s time to get ready for work. I do my walking first, which I do where I work. Sometimes I think that I really live where I work and the rest is me hanging out where my family lives until I can go home each morning.

Because I am into books, I read all the time. I may have as many as five books going at once. Sounds like a lot, but I read books that my students read to be sure the content is acceptable and because I believe that you cannot suggest a book to a student that you have not read. They have questions. They will catch you if you lie. And I can tell if they have read a book they claim to have read… I have my own questions. These are fast, easy reads for me. I eat a middle school book in an evening. Three days tops on a typical high school level book. I always have one school book going at all times.

I have a “car” book. Currently my car book is Firebirds Soaring; An Anthology of Original Speculative Fiction edited by Sharyn November. (I love her name!) I find that anthologies are good car books for spur of the moment reading when you get stuck somewhere. But I also have a few spare books in the car… these are generally books that I have read before and can pick up and re-read in a heartbeat, just because I like them. Slaughter House Five by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.and The Life of Pi by Yann Martelare in my “way-back” (The hatch back area of the clown car I drive… not be confused with the “way-back machine” used by Mr. Peabody and his boy Sherman… though I’d really like to have one of those too.). But I don’t really count the way-back books.

I am currently reading Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, which I will give a mini talk about at my next librarian’s meeting. Very cool book that makes you glad you are human and that other people are too. It doubles as my non-fiction book for the time being. I try to keep a non-fiction book going at all times. Tears of the Desert: A Memoir of Survival in Darfur by Halin Lewis, was my last one before this… wow, very heavy book that breaks your heart. Such abuse. Crushing.

I just ordered An Alternate History of the Second World War by Harry Turtledove on suggestion (thank you billy pilgrim!) and am very anxious to get into it. Time for reading for fun! I can use a break from reality. Altered reality is very good for me… altering mine or reading about someone else’s. Ha.

I have recently closed the covers of Bird by Rita Murphy… a good middle school book fantasy, also recently closed is the entire (to date) “Dexter the serial killer”books by Jeff Lindsay… and they were very fun stuffs. He has an unusual dark humor that is lovely. I also finished the Southern Vampire Mysteries 1-4 by Charlaine Harris, about Sookie Stackhouse HBO has that series going under the name True Blood. There is more there that I can mine yet. But it was time for change.

I hope you read. I hope words fill you to the brim and spill over into your thoughts and life until they run down the gutter of your remembering places and fill your dreams. Mine do and they make me very happy :)

>,)))*> ><)))*> Do you have a travel book dmarks? ><)))*> ><)))*>

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Tribattlethon 1

These are youtube vidoes of my Squeaky and friend. Squeaky is the one in the box. The maces... morningstars, whatever you want to call them are really computer mice. They are the ultimate computer geeks of the future.

Hope you get a laugh from them. I do, but he's mine and we moms are easily amused!

Get 'em Squeaky!

You should see the bruises on this boy!

Tribattlethon 2


Today is a much better day. I figured out why I was so crabby yesterday and got over it. So to celebrate... here is one of my favorite Oregon stories. It is kind of gross, but many fun things are. Hope you enjoy it. I only wish I knew how to insert the video for you to watch. It's really great.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_t44siFyb4 You may have seen it already!

Exploding whale
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Dynamite was used to blow up a rotting beached whale, with unintended consequences.
Exploding whales have been documented on two notable occasions, as well as several lesser-known ones. The most famous explosion occurred in the United States at Florence, Oregon, in 1970, when a dead sperm whale (originally reported to be a gray whale) was blown up by the Oregon Highway Division in an attempt to dispose of its rotting carcass. This incident became famous in the U.S. when American humorist Dave Barry wrote about it in his newspaper column after viewing a videotape of television footage of the explosion. It later became well-known internationally when the same footage circulated on the Internet.
There have also been spontaneous explosions. The most widely reported example was in Taiwan in 2004, when a buildup of gas inside a decomposing sperm whale caused it to explode while it was being transported for a post-mortem examination. Exploding whales have been written about and documented by several well-known authors.
Documented cases of exploding animals are fairly rare. Whale explosions in the United States and Taiwan were widely covered by the world press. However, there have been less famous incidents in other parts of the world.

Monday, March 9, 2009


yuck. morning sucked. woke up to snowing squishy flakes that slimed me at 5:20 a.m. on my way to walk. flopped around all night... tired because of time change. didn't lose a pound and that pisses me off. I work hard at that!

then boss called me into his office. dread... aaaa... doom. but he was really nice to me. I got an excellent/exceeds expectations on my yearly review. phew! he told me that I have a fan club going of teachers who think I'm the bees knees. he also assured me that no matter what happens with the school, that as many hours a day that we are open, my library will be open. that is what he wants... and that I must keep doing what I do so well...ohthankyougod!

which brings this to mind. when you work with kids, you have to be a bit of a kid yourself. this week I' still reading Irish fairy tales and using my best... which is pretty sad really... Irish accent. silly and fun. stories I love, love, love. Today was a story about a pooka.

at least I won't make any kids cry like I did when I read stories about Martin Luthor King Jr. I felt so bad about that! I broke a 4th grader!

oooh it's probation officer night and fun group therapy meeting for the boy's dad in the town to the left tonight. my least favorite evening of the week. I get to sit in the car and wait for about 3 hours total. i can't wait to be quit of this junk! i feel like i'm on probation too. pisses me off big time.

i hate mondays. remember the Boomtown Rat's "I Don't Like Mondays?"

but at least my work day ended well.

Do have a wonderful evening and do something surprising and fun for someone you love! it will make you feel great too. i shall take my own advice and cheer myself up that way.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Trip to Edgefield and back.

The photo in the middle is the ceiling in the theater. You can dine while you watch.

Click to enlarge photos
This is some of the artwork at Edgefield. We wandered around and looked at stuff, took our time. Had a pounder of Terminator Stout (it's brewed there) and a salad in the Powerhouse Pub. Then took it slow going back home on the old historic highway. Nice lazy day.

Other than that all we have done all day is watch old episodes of Breaking Bad, a series on AMC that has proven interesting in a bizarre sort of train wreck way. Has the guy who played Hal, the dad on Malcom in the Middle as a chemisty teacher who finds out he does not have long to live, so he decides to make and distribute meth as a way of leaving his pregnant wife and handicapped son enough money to live in comfort without him.

Hope your Sunday was peaceful too.

Plummeting 620 feet from its origins on Larch Mountain, Multnomah Falls is the second highest year-round waterfall in the United States. Nearly two million visitors a year come to see this ancient waterfall.

I used to work in our market and tourists would ask me stuipid questions about the area. One of my favorite dumb questions was "What time do they turn off the falls?"

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Okay... you tell me... how to you say this name? Ha.

Weird day today. My daughter and grandson came to kidnap grandma and take me away to the big city. We ate out, but nothing special. Just diner fare. Though I did snap this sign when it made me laugh. We took boy to run around the park and chase geese. Have to be careful about that, geese can be mean, but he's pretty slow.

Tomorrow Swell and I are going in to town to a place called Edgefield. It used to the the poor house/ farm commune in days gone by. It was totally self sufficient. There is a pub in what used to be the power station that has a theater that is so cool. I'll get photos. It has all sorts of great stuff including vineyards, it's own brew pub (in the power station) , gourmet restaurant, a glass blower to watch, all sorts of art work here and there or in the display area in the main building, herb and flower gardens that are amazing. The music is live and very fun variety. They are having a CRACKED POTS UnGARDEN ART SHOW
Featuring artwork from over 20 artists, made from recycled materials!
Held in tandem with the Grand Lodge's 87th Birthday Celebration!
Artwork exhibit
Grand Lodge .

I guess you can actually go to the link and check it out with their photos... undoubtedly way better than any I will take, but I will snap some. Please have a wonderful night and enjoy every moment you can.

Friday, March 6, 2009

NOAA recommends killing sea lions at Bonneville Dam

Posted by The Oregonian January 17, 2008 10:58AM

Categories: Green headlines

A federal agency is recommending the killing of as many as 30 sea lions a year at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River, where they gather each year to eat migrating spring chinook salmon.

The recommendation from NOAA Marine Fisheries was one of four options, ranging from no action at all to killing many more of the sea lions that prey on salmon. Sea lions and many Columbia River spring salmon runs are protected by federal laws.

The agency will take public comment through Feb. 19.

The alternatives are in a draft environmental assessment issued in response to requests from Oregon, Washington and Idaho to kill predatory sea lions as a means of preserving dwindling salmon runs.


Go to the NOAA site to read more about the recommendations

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I photographed these outside my library's back door in the science folk's domain. They are the first spring flowers that showed up in this nice protected corner. They were supposed to be for citizen when she was so low... flowers to cheer her up, but it took me too long to get it together. Oops.

This is my river... chock full of salmon, sturgeon, sculpin, which are a nasty little catfish wannabe thing with spikes that cut you and make a strangling quacking sound when you pull them out of the water... eeeech. Steelhead, trout, wide mouth bass, regular bass, squaw fish... that squawk when you catch them. I truly prefer my fish to remain mute as they suffocate! Actually, we catch and release, but several friends gift us with things they don't release. The only fish we don't release are the squaw fish because they are killing all the baby salmon and have a bounty on their slimy heads.

When you are not facing north at the river and Washington state beyond the other side of the river, and you turn around to face south... this is what you see. These are my gorge cliffs. Hard to tell with the clouds hanging there, but they are very steep. Click on it and it gets bigger. My town is no more than four blocks wide north to south and has only one main street. We are three and a half miles long.

Now this next one is for Citizen in particular and the rest of you too.
It reminds me of her aliens, though I am sure this was perpetrated by the science folk.
They are everywhere.

I've no clue what the experiment is, but there
is one for sure. What do you think they're doing?

I'll ask some questions and see what I can find out.

Favorite quotes overheard today...

"I'll tell..." #1

"Who you gonna tell?" #2

"God." #1

"Yeah... and he'll get all smitey and shit!" #3


Spring Break is coming up for me. One of the advantages of working in a school is that I get spring break, winter break, many holidays and the entire summer off. I get 12 checks a year, so it isn't feast or famine. I am trying to figure out what to do for that week and the weekends on each end of it.

What would you do if you could go on vacation this time of year?
Any suggestions?

Here are a few Irish factoids... Oh suffer through them! Humor me. There are only 4.

Did you know that St. Patrick was the second Bishop of Ireland, not the first?

He had dreams and heard voices like Joan of Arc... good thing he wasn't in France.

There were Irish immigrants in Colonial times too, though they were not poor and many were rich... one, Charles Carroll, who was the wealthiest man in the 13 colonies, lived to be 94 and was the only signer to see a railroad train. (My own Great-grandma, "Ma Boo" danced a jig for me when she was 96 years old! Go old Irish folk!)

Between 1830 and 1920 4.5 million Irish immigrants came to the USA and now 36,495,800 people claim Irish heritage (2006 census), second only to those of German heritage. Mexican Americans are at 28 million and something in the same census. (The Irish number doesn't include the Scottish-Irish who are counted separately and number around 5 million more.) Facts came from

That's all the Irish for the day.

My favorite quote heard today:
“You should take this one because I have a fat head.” --one
kindergartner handing a piece of paper to another one. No, I don't get it either.

I found this and thought it was interesting enough to do:
Earth Hour: March 28,2009 8:30-9:30 p.m. turn off your lights.

Now I am going to go and figure out how to get photos from my camera into my computer and from the computer into my blog. Wish me luck.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope your blessings outnumbered the things that ticked you off today!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Yeah! The bugs are finally worked out. I am so excited. Now I will have the time on computer to do my blog justice and not have to fight boys.

Just got back from the next town to the left... had a wonderful diner with the boy's dad... at a great Mexican food place. Yum. I had to drive Swell up there to stay with friends... and I don't go in the clown car anywhere by myself, in case it dies. Boy's dad is good about that. He is a gentleman. I will give him that. We actually got along well for a change. He even drove so that I could have a margarita. Okay, two. He had chicken enchilada suiza and I had the grilled chili lime chicken with a fresh salsa made of cabbage, onions cilantro and tomatoes. Awesome! Now I have food for lunch tomorrow too.

Even the drive home was great. I mean it was dark, but the entire distance is next to the river. Our river is up to a mile wide. It curvs and varies.I could see all the lights across the way and their reflections shimmered on the dark water. There was enough light to silhouette the clouds here and there.
Very pretty. No rain either. That was a nice break.
On the way up Swell (Max) and I cemented our plans for St. Patrick's Day. A trip to the big city to one of the Gaelic clubs called Kells. We are going to take the Viking (He looks like Thor... swear to goodness!), Nature Boy (So called because he loves to wear his kilt without a shirt.) Nature Boy and the Viking are brothers. Very handsome fellows. Sigh. (But like sons.) And B-wreck of course. Those four are a quite a team. B-wreck will be the designated driver. Anyway, four handsome guys, the best music in the world and enough to drink to make us silly. Ought to be a good time. I won't lack for dance partners that's for sure.

But coming home and finding that Hal 9000 was finally well... that was the icing on the cake. Have a wonderful night. I am going to sleep like a rock. Oh, guess my giving up drinking didn't last too long did it. Good t hing it wasn't for Lent.

Erin Go Bragh!

It’s March and the typical spring madness is upon me. Sick to death
of rain, though it’s what makes my home so green and lovely, sicker
still of snow. We had sunshine this morning and now the blue has turned
to grey rain. Perhaps I will cheer myself by splashing in the puddles.

March is also time for feelings of Erin Go Bragh!

I offer you these quotes by Irish authors:

“He was a bold man who first eat an oyster.”—Jonathan Swift

“Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him
through temporary periods of joy.” –William Butler Yeats

“I have believed the best of every man. And find that to believe is
enough to make a bad man show him at his best, or even a good man swings
his lantern higher.” –William Butler Yeats

(All personal favorites of mine. I’m still having trouble eating
oysters on the half shell… bold man indeed! )

Where I work, it’s all green, white and gold for St. Patrick’s
Day’s coming. I’ve gathered my best stories about Fionn mac
Cumhail (a.k.a. Finn mac Cool)… the greatest of all Irish heros… in my
personal opinion of course. Ireland gave birth to many. Today I read
the first story and got a real kick out of the looks on the faces of the
children when I told them how Finn Mac Cool bit off the magic little
finger of the great giant Cuhullin! There were cries of
“EEEEEEWWW!” but also big giggles.

“This mighty soldier on the eve of the war he waged told his troops
of lessons learned from battles fought: ‘May your heart grow bolder
like an iron-clad brigade’ said this leader to his outnumbered lot.
Known as a hero to all that he knew, long live the legend of Finn Mac
Cool! The brave Celtic leader of the chosen few… long live the legend of
Finn Mac Cool!” (as the Dropkick Murphy’s song goes.)

There’s a story of giant potato, one about Finn’s fine wife, Oona
who is as clever as brave, the hero giant Cuhullin or sometimes spelled
Cuchulainn (Koo-hoo-lin) who’s skin would turn around in battle so
that his heels and calves faced forward… one eye shrunk up tiny in his
head and the other grew huge and red… His hair would drip blood or light
and he entered a battle trance where he would not even know friend from
foe… so fierce was he! At the end of his life, he battled so hard that
he had to strap himself to a rock to keep from falling down as he raged.
Wahoo… fun stuffs!

We have fairies, sprites, will ’o the wisps and leprchans too for the
softer of heart. Some of my listeners are pretty little yet. But for
me, there is nothing like a good battle story with a hero at it’s
heart, bigger than life. I love the heck out of this stuff… no one
embroiders the truth better.

“Out of Ireland have we come, great hatred, little room, maimed us at
the start. I carry from my mother’s womb a fanatic heart.”
–William Butler Yeats. (Ditto me.)

I hope to finish Hal 9000 today. I had a hardware problem last night
that Squeaky has to help me resolve… but then I will know how to resolve
it myself. I hope everyone has enjoyed their day to the fullest

O terque quaterque beatum !
(We are three or four times blessed!) Believe it.

Monday, March 2, 2009


I am not even sure if this is going to work or not. My blog seems to be ill. It keeps telling me to try later, unable to load my blog now. So why do I think this post might make it? I don't. I'm just giving it a shot.

The Hal 9000 is loading it's programs now. I'm on the family Dell. Squeaky made me load my stuff myself. Said I need to learn how to build computers. Nice he has faith that I can, but geeze... we shall see how this works out. He even made me install a CD drive. A cruel master, this boy. I am by nature technically terminal. I can kill a sewing machine by walking past it... and yes, I duct tape, not sew.

So wish me luck. Hopefully I will be back tomorrow and beginning to do better things.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Okay, the Hal 9000 is still on hold, though Squeaky is on his feet again and back to making sounds. I overheard him telling his friend online "Well, think how much you hate your mom and multiply that by ten... that's how I feel about my dad and my mom... let's say I'm two hugs away from going postal!"
So the new Hal line should be launched soon. He made some other computers for his older brothers and called that line the Bates 5000... for those of you who follow The Onion News or who have seen The Onion Movie, that's the computer that was out of date before the guy who ordered it could get it out of the box... the Bates 2000, 2001. etc. This led me to check out The Onion this morning again. Still funny stuff. If you haven't been there, give it a shot.

Here are my questions:

1. How do you find stuff for your blogs?
2. How do you know what is okay to borrow for your blog and what isn't? Are there rules?
3. Is there some in-service or class out there somewhere? And please don't let it be a community ed thing! (We in education take education way too seriously!)