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The last day of school. Students shouting, papers flying, notebooks cast aside, Books piled in forlorn stacksÖ What happens to the learning? Does it stop for 3 months? Take a vacation to the beach? Or do curious minds unfold, released from the dull Drudgery of dates to memorize, tedious formulas to solve, Endless papers to write. Freed from the artificial compartmentalization of knowledge into English, Social Studies, Science, Math¨Ė Lines NOT to be crossedĖ Young minds explore, discover, create. What have we done to education? Why do we persist in continuing what doesnít work? Change hurts, but stasis is deadly!
Snakes. I don't mind snakes. As long as they know their place, that is. And that place is well outside my house or yard. Seeing one in the wild is kind of cool, I think. I just don't wanna be up close and personal, as they say. The last environmental conference I went to, I came home seriously considering buying one as a pet. An enthusiast there had brought his snakes and let us handle them. They really are lovely, gentle creatures. I decided against getting one in the end, but I still remember how smooth and cool they felt.
I hunger for many things. Chiefly, right now, for dinner, but I truly hunger for understanding and knowledge. I guess thatís why Iím drawn to education. I want to learn, and I enjoy helping others learn too. I hunger for affection as well. It scares me sometimes when I think about the long years ahead if I donít meet someone to share them with. Maybe Iím too picky, but I know what I want in a man, and so far, I havenít found it. Iím ever hopeful, though! When youíve been hungry, the meal is much more satisfying!
I LOVE chocolate! Smooth, creamy, dark, sinfully delicious chocolate! A bite of chocolate was almost my undoing today. I'd taken a bar and bit off a little when I needed to return to my workshop, so I stuck it in the front pocket of my purse where my cell phone goes, thinking I'd finish it later. A yummy snack to tide me over on our long trip home. WRONG! I forgot about it for too long, and it melted. I didnít discover it until I pulled out my cell and found my fingers covered in warm, gooey chocolate. Ick!
A lost child disappears into the icy woods. His mother, distracted by another childís needs, turned away For just a minute, not even a minute! And heís gone! Desperate, she calls his name and grabbing the other boyís hand, Drags him all around the snow-laden landscape. The nearby highway terrifies her. Did he go that way? Did a stranger snatch him away, never to be seen again? Has he fallen somewhere, frightened and alone? In minutes that seem like hours, he strides back into view. Mommy! I chased a turkey into the forest and followed my tracks back to you. Itís okay!
Things I like: sunflowers, a sunny day, a warm breeze, the Sonoran Desert, saguaros, rocky mountains, flop-eared dogs, mystery novels, baseball, movies, acting, brain research, biology, museums, vanilla diet coke, sitting on my balcony, hiking in the desert, sailing, Mexico, Englandís Lake District, Jamaica, scuba diving, Australia, anything chocolate, seafood, sitting in a darkened theatre waiting for the feature, waking up after a restful sleep, traveling to new places, learning new things, taking pictures, getting letters, pretty boxes, reading good books, browsing book stores, popcorn with lots of salt and M&Ms, my pets: Pearl and Scout, and my two sons!
A stolen child: A life lost, relationships destroyed, history obscured. How to recover that which was taken? Who might I have been? Did my motherís heart ever heal from the loss? Was I replaced by another child and forgotten? How can this rift be bridged? Will she want to meet me? Dare I seek her out? And what of my father? Did he rage and search until exhausted and broken? And the woman who took meÖ my ďmotherĒÖ What led her to such a desperate act? How could she keep such a dark secret all these years? Dare I seek the answers?
One hundred descriptive words: challenging, daunting, fun, super, colorful, random, difficult, interesting, juicy, lazy, shy, fun-loving, fierce, impatient, unhappy, fantastic, unbelievable, colorful, serious, greasy, mysterious, funny, unwieldy, gaseous, sweet, sincere, spikey, spiney, soft, prickly, mushy, harsh, melodic, fragrant, spicy, easy, smooth, slick, velvety, rapid, fast, striped, stippled, spotted, spinning, rolling, rambling, dashing, frightened, rough, scratchy, bumpy, slick, short, tall, circular, curly, straight, furry, evil, saintly, wicked, happy, ambitious, warm, cold, chilly, toasty, tempting, unyielding, achy, strong, weak, smelly, stinky, sour, salty, winged, watery, dry, moist, humid, smoky, languid, energetic, peachy, tasty, bright, sallow, pale, tan, fit, fat, wavy, lumpy, frigid.
Word association: Sun flower garden grow up down pillow soft sleep dream goal accomplish win lose weight gain confidence building self-esteem ego maniac fanatic immersed tunnel vision foresight future past present gift talent show tell listen up stairs walk run jog marathon half Hawaii beach ocean sand sea food dinner meal cook clean wash wear out in fashion statement opinion fact judgment court case attorney divorce broken family ties knots sailing free offer accept scholarship school learn discover inquire grow garden water aerobics workout exercise muscles build legos play games volleyball spike railroad trip vacation play pool swim sun.
I must confront someone. His behavior is beginning to affect my attitude toward him and our work. We have a meeting on Wednesday, so I will bring it up then. Hereís a possible approach: ďI know itís unintentional, but lately some things youíve been doing have upset me. For example, when we met to discuss the workshop in Tucson, I was in the middle of making a suggestion when you turned to LJ and started talking to him! Even when you do appear to listen, itís clear from your response that you havenít or have already made up your mind.
I just read an entry about the ďheart of the houseĒ that intrigued me. My house may have dual hearts. The kitchen/dining nook is definitely one. Inevitably, when people come over, they gather at the little kitchenette. The preparation area is adjacent, so itís easy for the cook to continue talking to guests without them feeling like theyíre in the way. A second heart has is the living room. It has a great, comfortable seating area where everyone can get together and see each other, and the big screen TV is there too, if we all want to watch something.
Mara: Despair leads to desperation. Children skipping to school or playing in their yards pain her. Her empty womb aches at the sound of their laughter. Arms sag with the weight of her loss, legs leaden from the lonely, weary walk home to the waiting crib, now barren, just like her. She sleeps ceaselessly, waking only to sleep again, attempting escape from the cruel knowledge: she can never have a child, never feel the sweet pull of her babyís mouth against her aching breast, never smell the sweet fragrance of its tender skin. Never feel like a whole woman, fulfilled.
Ways to make a difference: Plant a tree. Share a smile. Teach a child. Show your love. Speak your mind. Listen to others. With-hold judgment. Surprise someone with flowers or a note. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Donate old clothes. Vote. Buy green. Recycle. Conserve. Plant flowers. Hug the ones you love. Speak kind words. Adopt a homeless animal. Read to a child. Sing. Visit a lonely senior citizen. Trust the Universe. Make a friend. Tell your story. Give to charity. Create. Offer a shoulder to cry on. Open your heart. Lead a movement you believe in. Follow your heart.
Chewing gum. My current favorite flavor is Trident Vanilla Mint Splash. Yummy! Itís very refreshing and the flavor lasts a long time too. When I was a kid, I loved Black Jack gum. I think mainly because it was black. I used to like to put it over my front teeth so it looked like theyíd been kicked out. I doubt I fooled anyone, but I liked to think so. Beemanís was another favorite. Really unusual flavor. Neither of them lasted very long, but I still liked them. Bubblegum is the best, though. I am really good at blowing bubbles.
I am so tired right now; all I can think about is sleep. Iím excited at the prospect of sleeping in tomorrow, but I bet Iíll wake with the sun as usual. If Iím lucky, maybe Iíll be able to go back to sleep for a couple of hours. Nothing to do (at least no appointments) until the evening when Hamilton & I will go to the play. I canít wait to be lazy! Maybe Iíll stay in my pajamas all day long. I do have work to do, but I can schedule when. Such a luxury! I love retirement!
Purse dump: cell phone/PDA, camera, my business cards, others cards, gum, nail file, band-aids, moist wipes, chapstick, lipstick, membership cards, credit cards, Barnes& Noble card, gift cards, driverís license and AAA membership, insurance cards, photos, scuba card, receipts, small notebook, checkbook, Altoids, receipt, eyeglasses, tic-tacs, fortune, peppermints, tootsie pop, a pen, lotion, concealer, lipsticks, eye drops, trail mix, a check to be cashed, cuticle cream, highlighter, light-up pen, gel pen, safety pin, tissues, hair elastic, Hi Health key card, employee name badges, another highlighter, nail repairs, keys, jump drive, dental floss, band-aid, labels, ďfrequent customerĒ cards, REI card
Rambles, obserations, rants:
broadening. I knowĖmy hips broadened at least 2 inches on my last trip.
My son learned in nutrition class that you should eat 5 small meals a day. He complained that he only eats one, but I pointed out that itís a continuous meal: he never stops eating!
A colleague of mine thinks best when he talks. Thatís fine for him, but hell on those who have to listen, especially if they think best in quiet contemplation. The real irony is that heís a terrible listener when itís someone else heís supposed to listen to!
Tinnitus. The very name makes my teeth hurt. The sound, that incessant ringing, is enough to drive me to distraction. Vonnegut wrote about ďhandicappingĒ people in ďHarrison Bergeron.Ē Tinnitus accomplishes pretty much the same thing. I suppose that perhaps you could get used to it, but thankfully, mine disappeared. Wikipedia says itís not a disease but a symptom of something else: ear wax, aspirin, infectionÖ low serotonin. Whatever was causing it, thank god it went away. Iím not sure I could learn to live with that one. Aging has become one adjustment after another. Thatís one I hope to avoid.
The roll of film appeared as if from nowhere, without label or hint of its origin. Susan speculated on its contents: long lost baby photos? Hawaiian vacation shots? Mexican real estate to purchase? evidence of damage for insurance records? her flower study? their trip to Rocky Point? the butterfly exhibit? the Fiesta Bowl parade from 2 years ago? Kennyís Pop Warner games? that amazing sunset? Uncle Jackís 80th birthday? The possibilities were endless. Only one way to find out, so she made the trek to Walgreenís, went out for coffee and came back to discover a roll of blank film.
Iím really stuck for something to write about tonight. Itís already after 9 pm, and the site already has tomorrowís entry listed as needed. Today was a busy day. I finished the book I was reading. It was pretty good, not great, but good. I want to start something more literary now. Maybe Iíll pick up
Comfort Me with Apples
next. I loved her first book. Such a delightful read! Trouble was, it made me hungry. She was so vivid in her descriptions of food and food preparation. It almost made me want to go cook something! Almost, not quite!
I feel beat up after every meeting we have lately. I canít even pinpoint why. Itís just not much fun any more. I need to get back to collaborating with Gary on a script, I think. Or maybe working on my own stuff. Something. Iím just feeling kind of stale, in the doldrums, so to speak. Thereís nothing Iím really looking forward to right now. Just lots of stuff to do, and nothing Iím really aching to tackle. Itís all kind of like housework: it has to be done, but it never really lasts, and no one appreciates it anyway.
Matthew and I have been having a ďScrubsĒ marathon of sorts. Itís been pretty fun. The show is very well-written and acted and they have great guest actors too. You never know who might show up. I am enjoying just being with him for awhile. All too soon heíll be moving out and heading for college. I can hardly believe thatís possible. I have mixed feelings about it. Itíll be good to not have to pick up dirty socks and shoes all over the place, but I will miss his company. I guess Jim is really gone for good now.
Inspiration strikes like lightening, catching on fire the tinder that is ready to be struck. It disappears just as quickly as it comes, so itís important to be ready for the spark. Like seeds falling on barren ground, if thereís nothing to ignite, the fire sputters and dies. Read all the literature you can find, listen to music, scour the newspaper for interesting people and events, open your mind, see the world as a story, carry a notepad, find a place to sit quietly and just breathe, exercise your body and your mind, take a walk, wait for the spark.
Cooking for engineers. Much more interesting than it sounds! And some good recipes too! http://www.cookingforengineers.com/toc.php?sort=alpha#RecipeFile A goofy little site, but fun! http://www.lerfjhax.com/scrambler An easy way to help make the world a little nicer place. It links to similar sites for breast cancer, literacy, animals, re-forestation, child health. http://www.thehungersite.com/ Project Implicit. Interesting surveys/results of attitudes about pretty random stuff. Can be revealing! https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/research/ This one has some interesting links and ideas: http://www.52projects.com/ Join the tribe! A cool cultural/environmental experiment. http://tribewanted.com/ I just found this one and canít wait to see what they do next! http://www.threadbanger.com/ A great craft site: http://www.gomakesomething.com/index.php
Death at a Funeral
, a dark comedy by Dean Crain, and directed by Frank Oz is a hysterical romp through a funeral where everything that can go wrong does, with some truly unexpected turns. Full of familiar faces, with unfamiliar names, the cast is brilliant. Alan Tudyk is especially good as the fiancť who takes valium to calm himself before facing the potential father-in-law, only to discover his fianceeís unscrupulous brother (in pharmacy school) has cooked up a mixture of acid, mescaline, and other assorted hallucinogenic drugs. The mislabeled pill bottle crops up a few more times with hilarious results.
Procrastination: a terrible condition. One I seem to be perpetually in. I make lists and check things off sometimes, but there are always a few things that keep cropping up on my lists: file stuff, go through the mail, pay the bills, organize my office, organize my closet, organize my photos, organize my life! One of these days, I may actually manage to get it done. I need a deadline. Now I have one for voice over at least. I need material ready to show Lou on July 11. That gives me exactly two weeks to get ready. Game on!
Iíve been caught up in Project Runway again today. I never mean to get stuck, but somehow if I catch it on, I always get sucked in. It just fascinates me somehow. I usually donít even like the fashions, but the interplay and discussion of the designs are always so interesting. I even know who wins this one (at least I think I remember!). I wonder when the new season actually starts? Itís gotta be sometime soon, I think. Meanwhile, Iíve also been captured by the Top Chef show too. Unfortunately, it usually makes me hungry! Gotta go eat something!
Lawannah and I are having a weight loss challenge for the next month. The first one to lose ten pounds buys the other a facial. Sounds like fun! I hope itíll be the incentive I need to get back on track. Iíve been doing a little better about going to the gym this week, but the next few days will be a challenge. I go out to lunch or dinner every day for the next three! Yikes! It seems like such a waste to just get a salad every timeÖ maybe there will be something else interesting, but still yummy.
A few movies I love: Big Fish, Princess Bride, Never-ending Story, Thomas Crown Affair, LA Confidential, Witness, Conspiracy Theory, Monkey Business, Some Like it Hot, Harry Potter series, Man Who Would Be King, Deathtrap, House on Haunted Hill, The Haunting, Two for the Road, Amelie, Chocolat, The Thin Man series, The Saint, Crash, Millions, Sybil, A Man for All Season, Lion in Winter, Little Shop of Horrors, All About Eve, Seven Faces of Dr. Lao, High Fidelity, American Graffiti, Annie Hall, Bell, Book, & Candle, Big, Big Chill, Bringing Up Baby, The Philadelphia Story, Philadelphia, Casablanca, Key Largo, Petrified Forest.
Writing 100 words a day has been an interesting challenge. Yesterday is the first day I forgot to do it on the actual day, so today Iím doing two entries. Itís interesting how easy it really was. I need to take that and discipline myself to do another challenge: practice voice-over and work on marketing myself. If I forced myself to do just an hour each day, Iíd really make progress. Iíll develop a schedule: 1 hour for voice work, another for writing, one for stuff around the house, another for fooling around online, one to workout. Then a nap!
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