Friday, May 27, 2011

Haiku Friday - Yippy!

And today the topic is troubles. Please be sure you go check out Primary Source.


They are everywhere
Nowhere is a safe haven
Troubles permeate

A little bleak...

Troubles focus us
A shining light of living
Got perspective now?

Still working on really getting a good zinger in the last 5 syllables. I'll keep practicing.

Thank you Kim Pearson for the inspiration.

It Was a Great Title

and it would have been a great post. But I can't remember what I was thinking about in the shower :-)

The title was that of a U2 song, but I can't remember now :-)

U2, without exception, is the greatest band of all time. This has nothing to do with politics and opinions about world issues, this proclamation is about their music. I grew up with them and I love them. Their music moves me - makes me sing at the top of my lungs and makes me feel like I with an old friend. A couple of their albums didn't do much for me, but most of them are what I consider to be the most classic. Second to them, so close he/they are really kinda co-first place really, is Sting/The Police. More old friends with whom I sing the most passionately.

BTW - I know Bono comes off a bit "over the top," but he has passions and they make news and they do highten awareness. I believe he

Ah! That was it, a posting about my beliefs. In a moment or two I'll remember the title of the post...

Anyway, I believe that he is motivated by true concern and not by the opportunity to see his name in print.

Truly, though, can you image spending most of your adult life as a person who has the guts to walk into a stadium filled with tens of thousands of people and stand before them and sing. And the paparazzi... To be able to be productive under those circumstances dictates that you gotta be a little different than the rest of us. These people are brave, and when they shine their light on misfortune we do, in fact look. And most of us are inspired. Its okay that they are special. Our world needs that.

You can call me a bleeding heart liberal, its a badge of honor in my book. But I like to think that us liberals are learning to examine the misfortune *and* the realities of how our world works and try to work within the systems to bring fortune to those who so desperately need it. Liberals aren't stupid. Perhaps somewhat idealistic, but many are learning to somehow bring the cogs of the wheels together in a a way the moves the machine forward and not in a way that brings things to a deadlock.

All of us on the planet are learning. Our souls are evolving. As it should be.


Hey! Its Friday! I gotta go check on my haiku topic.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

On More Amazing Thing

My folks told me about this and its amazing. Perhaps I overuse the work amazing, but I like it. Especially today.

Be Educated. I clicked on a math example and learned a few things!

Three Amazing Things

In the last twenty four hours I have had three amazing moments.

The first moment was last night during our bedtime routine. We were all piled up on the bed reading books. Tinker Bell, just completing 1st grade, read first, then it was my turn to read the Ford 2007 Mustang Brochure. Iron Man was given this brochure by the daughter of our beloved baby sitter. It describes the various Mustang Models available that year and saucy marketing jargon. Iron Man loves cars and he thinks it great the way I ham-up the descriptions. I read it in my "tawdry Harlequin Romance" voice. Its a little abscene, which amuses Zeus! I felt very satisfied, like life was good. That felt great.

As a side note, I have decided I want a 2007 Shelby Mustang GT500KR with a glass roof. That puppy has 540 horsepower and 510 lb. - ft torque. What is torque in a car? It must be important. I want it. Iron Man gave me a hot wheels Lamborghini, but he wants me top bring it back from my office so that he can give me a Mustang. I don't speak Italian, so its okay.

The second moment was this morning at Pre-K. M. brought baby R. and baby R. wasnt' sleeping. She's three months old and I have never seen her awake! Anyway, I was late for work because I held her for about 20 minutes. Man did she feel good in my arms. I held her little chest to mine and I could feel her little beating heart. Man did she feel good.

No worries - I know my limitations. Left to my own devices I am done having babies, but you never know what the Almighty has in store. As they say in Islam, The Almighty doesn't challenge us beyond our ability to succeed, no matter how we feel about stuff.

The third moment wrenched my heart. As I drove to work I heard a man in OK as he talked about the two young sons (a baby and a 3 year old) who (or whom or that? Need English help) he lost in a Tornado in the last day or so. He chocked up and cried as he talked. And I cried as I zoomed down the expressway. I can't imagine his pain. Today I will remember him as often as possible and breath peace for his heart, which will actually never heal.

I am really feeling things today.

God be with that father, and all those who have lost loved ones and friends to natural disaster lately. I hope that those of us further from loss will expand peace for these people to grieve.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Frantic Planning and Musing on Technology

Pre-K graduation prep is in full swing and there's much to be done, so I am super busy. And last night I passed out reading the children bedtime stories.

Also, we are IM'ing in the office. Its insane and a real time suck if you ask me. I don't IM. I text with my pal E., but other than that, this whole "real time" stuff is intrusive. I'll bet this is how people felt about telephone a hundred years ago.

Funny how technology averse I am. I work with bleeding edge technology. I test the hardware that makes all this bleeding edge stuff hemorage. I work with it before anyone else - in fact.

But at the end of the day I need be no more plugged in than a cell phone. Yeah, I like to surf the web with my smart phone, and use it to keep up with my e-mail, but its not like it publishes my presence, whereabouts, and immediate thoughts.

I'm an old fashioned girl.

Monday, May 23, 2011

It Was All a Blur

What a busy weekend! Its left me feeling quite behind the 8-ball, but somehow or another I will catch up. Don't have much choice.

I indulged in a full on pity party earlier today, and I guess that was a good idea. I pulled myself back together and I am actually getting some good stuff done this afternoon. I was really upset, though, this morning.

There are days that just start out tough, but then they get better. Thank goodness.

And then they get really great. I spent the evening being pampered while I watched Despicable Me. I've seen it. In the theater - which is a big deal for me. Since I gave birth to Tinker Bell I have been to the movies maybe three times. And one of those times I was foiled by the theater closing early - No Julie and Julia for me! (No, I know how close to a Seinfeld quote that is, but I won't go there - I never liked that show! Sorry Jerry.)

Yes, today got better and better. My dreaded boss complimented me, by e-mail, i.e. he put it in writing! And it was an enthusiastic compliment. Truly, today I was carried on the shoulders of invisible angles who effortlessly conjured a better and better day for me with each passing hour.

Or I am bi-polar.

And I worry about that.

But for now, I am so much better than I was this morning. I am thankful beyond words.

Thank you God and my dear, dear angles.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Another Haiku Friday - Grace

Its Haiku Friday and the given word is Grace.

I'll chew on this while I work this morning. Gotta install some DIMMs and move a very heavy machine into one of my rows of mid-range heavy machines. Physically busy day for me today.


Makes me think of the serenity prayer...

God grant me the grace
To keep up this crazy pace.
Yippy! its Friday!

Hey - not to shabby for something off the cuff. Now into the lab with me!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Net Result

Ha! I guess my title is a pun today :-)

We sold it all. And we made some serious $$! Looks like we have what we need to fund all our festivities. Needless to say, I am relieved.

So the dreaded boss walked into my office this AM with a smile on his face. I knew immediately he was about to shovel something off on me. Turns out he wants me to train one of my co-workers. I am looking forward to this opportunity, actually. The co-worker is actually senior to me, and has a solid frame of reference. All I will really need to do is help him navigate a different area of testing with slightly different tools than he is currently using. He'll leap over me in less than an hour most likely :-) He's a nice person.

Today feels good. I like that.

I am keeping a close eye on Tinker Bell and Iron Man. In different ways they are both very sensitive. I hope I can help them develop sharp coping skills that will protect their sensitivity. That will be a good trick.

Turns out, this is National Mental Health Month. And yesterday was The Blog Party because it was Mental Health Day.

I've had correspondence with the mom of one of Tinker Bell's friends. And yesterday, as a result of something she shared, I felt compelled to research Mental Health advocacy. Seems there's a huge community out there. A community I want to explore further.

Now, there are folks out there who will flatly say that I am unstable. My emotion grip me at times. But I like to think I am getting a handle on that. Besides, Mental Health is not just getting a grip. Mental illness is as chemically, physically real as cancer. And, unfortunately, just as debilitating - maybe even more so because people are far less inclined to identify failing mental health and pursue treatment. Furthermore, there's such stigma.

I have felt that stigma my whole life. I have lived with it. Being embarrassed and circumspect about my mother.

I have so much more to say about this. And truly, what could be more important?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Blogging Live

I guess maybe I should actually be tweeting from the bake sale, but I don't tweet. I've been considering it, though.

But rest assured, it will be a cold, cold day in Hades wherein people will require Everest-grade Patogonia long underwear before I Facebook. It will never happen. If you ever think you've found me to friend on Facebook, you can be sure you are friending an imposter and not the actual me.

I digressed... please forgive me. BTW - Facebook is moving into my campus. They bought it. They are hacking apart lovely buildings with offices so as to create cubicle farms. Sad, sad, sad...

Its the quiet time between lunch and after school. I am using the school wireless for access and I am waiting until the parents come, hopefully with lots of $$, to buy the rest of our baked goods.

So far things have gone well. My mom came to help, as did Grandma M and K. Thank goodness they were able to help - otherwise it would be too much to do myself. We've got all kinds of yummy baked goods. Kids really like doughnuts. I sure hope we sell this stuff off - otherwise I won't know what to do with it. Maybe sell more tomorrow. But I would need someone else to be here to do it, I can only take off so much time.

Anyway, we may fall a little short of our goal, but that will mean that the parents need to chip in for all these graduation festivities they want. Suits me :-)

Baking My Heart Out

Just completed making two dozen cup cakes and 50 cake pops. The cake pops are really gorgeous this time. They turned out much better than the ones I made a couple of weeks ago. Seems I am getting the hang of it.

I haven't gone to Costco when it hasn't been raining in months. And sure enough, in the middle of May, we are having an arctic cold front and it was pouring when I went to Costco this evening. And my back hurt. I couldn't load the 3-bottle Bleach box onto my cart, a nice fellow stepped in to help me as he saw me struggling. I just couldn't get that darn box onto the rack below the basket. I felt old.

In other news, I sure am glad its tomorrow, because today was a little rough. Tomorrow will be better.

Yep, I guess I really didn't have anything to say...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Mental Health Issues

Mental health issues are near and dear to my heart. I have lived my entire life in the shadow of clinical depression. My mother has suffered her entire life. My grandmother would talk about what a happy young girl my mother was, but from what I have learned from my aunt, mom's older sister, my mother clearly was depressed by the time she reached high school. By the time my mother was about 30 she had a small child, me, and had tried to end her life. My father bailed.

Even as a small child I understood that my mom was ill. I also understood it was an illness no one talked about. I was embarrassed by what she'd tried to do. I didn't feel like it was my fault, but I did feel like I was the only person in the world who could stop her from trying to end her life again.

As a child I would sit up in the wee hours of the morning playing solitaire while my mother screamed about how awful her life was. I sat right there, in front of her to be sure that she didn't go into the kitchen and grab a knife.

This post is about hearing about the Peter C. Alderman Foundation on the radio this evening. They work in developing nations helping people with mental health and PTSD. Mr. Alderman talked about the stigma of mental health, and although he applied it to a different experience, I am so grateful that their foundation brings awareness, which is invaluable.


Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogger is Back - In Time for Haiku Friday

I was a little twitchy yesterday given that Blogger was unavailable. I sure am glad its back in time for Haiku Friday. Today's subject: tulips

Mary loves Tulips
Fresh from the store Dad brought them
I meant to plant some

I had nothing yesterday. So I stayed home. I dug out my desk. And only did 2 loads of laundry. I cooked a chicken. I did nothing. It was good. I have more today.

The kids had skating yesterday. They are both doing well. Iron Man is really coordinated. Tinker Bell gives it what she's got and I think she likes it better than any of her other activities. Its less demanding than karate - which is good for her coordination and concentration.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Compound Words: Jack + _______ = jack___

Tinker Bell is learning about compound words. Her homework last night included a rather lengthy list of "prefixes" to which she must add the second word to create a compound word. I am sure you know where I am going with this... Especially if you know me and some of my drunken-sailor speech patterns :-)

As I watered the roses out front, Tink worked on her homework in the kitchen. When she could not immediately think of a word to use to create a compound word, she would call out to me, "Mama, what goes with..."

After a few minutes she called out, "Mama, what goes with jack?"

I could come up with nothing else but a$$. Fortunately I didn't blurt it out. But truly, I was stumped.

I gave myself a really good laugh. It was a very peasant evening.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Haiku Friday Week Three For Me

That's right my dear readers, its Friday again which means its Haiku Friday: Pink. Please be sure to check out Kim Pearson, founder of Haiku Friday.

Today, as you see above, the subject is Pink:

When born she was pink
As she grew she loved it so
My dear Tink is Pink

Okay, so that one isn't a literary masterpiece, but its about Masha Allah gorgeous Tinker Bell.

Let me try again...

Didn't get this posted. Didn't get to try again - in fact didn't get to my computer until late this evening(Sunday). Things were even busier than usual. And I didn't even do any laundry, which I'll pay for *all* week. But the family tript to the dentist was successful. Iron Man may or may not have some sort of "cross bite," but there's nothing to do about it either way. Tink's jaw is much smaller than her teeth, so she's going to look goofy for a couple of years - great! But no cavities. Even Zeus escaped without much fuss... I need to have an old filling repaired. If I am not mistaken its the first one I ever had, so its roughly twenty two years old.

Have fun with the math on figuring out how old I may be :-) I don't think I've "dated" myself here before, so you may not have enough data. Maybe I'll offer up a tid bit in one of my posts this week.

Fran and Neva came over for bruch today. It was great. We had a great time. My souffle was superb - it rose to the skies! Got the recipe from Martha. Convicted felon or not, girlfriend can cook and write easy to follow recipes. If you want to cook something and she has a recipe, you are in good hands. Insider trading has nothing to do with cooking.

Good Night All...

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Google Is My Friend

And without it, I would be sunk. But because of it, I spend entirely too long reading about stuff I would otherwise have only found on a trip to the library, because that is where people used to go to find stuff out before there was Google.

Furthermore, I tend to more or less believe what I read in the articles I find on Google. I forget that these folks aren't fully, properly vetted and their information isn't painstakingly fact-checked. Whereas, if its in Encyclopaedia Britanica (excuse me for a moment while I Google the word encyclopaedia to be sure I spelled it correctly because I don't trust the spell checker in this little window. Hey! I spelled it right on the first try! This is huge for me.)

Anyway, if I couldn't Google every time I needed to figure out how to do what I do for a living, I wouldn't have this terrible job that I don't actually know how to do.

Google is my friend.

We went shoe shopping this evening. Zeus has decided that I am pretty, and I must dress pretty. At all times. For myself, I don't much care. Jeans and t-shirts are fine. But Zeus says I am wasting myself. So I chose some new shoes. Actually, he chose them. Its kinda like my glasses (which I actually don't wear any more because I finally found contacts that are super comfortable, but I digress), I figure he's the one that has to look at me, so I might as well choose something he likes. Same with the shoes.

After we settled on the shoes, which was easy actually, I wondered over to the display of what I can only describe as street-walker shoes. They are platform shoes with 4 inch heals. Most of the displays were size 7, but there was a pair that were a little larger (TIM - I have long, narrow feet - not always easy to find shoes, actually!), so I threw them down on the floor and wiggled my larger food (my right foot is a complete half size bigger than my left) into the shoe. It actually was amazingly comfortable. So then I put the other one on. Zeus saw what I was up to. He said he liked them and that I should buy them.

I am going to a wedding at the end of the month and I will debut my street-walker shoes then. No one will care what I am wearing, they will be stunned into admiration when they see me in those shoes.

Maybe I'll take a picture of them and throw it out on flickr. The only problem with that is then you get all the sicko-stalkers.

This is the second day in a row that I've digressed into a discussion about stalking. And, WOW! have I digressed from discussing my dear friend Google.

Tomorrow will be haiku Friday. Yippy! Maybe I'll also use tomorrow as a round up of all the stuff I said I would post on and then didn't - or at least didn't do justice to. (Yes, I know. Don't end a sentence with a preposition. But I did. I can. I am letting it stand. This is my blog.)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Three Rules

Our little community school only has three rules:

1. Make Good Decisions
2. Show Respect
3. Solve the Problem

Even the littlest Pre-K children know them by heart by the end of the first day of school.

These rules work. For everything. They work.

Today Iron Man talked back to his most beloved teacher, Teacher N. She was very upset with him and made him sit on the thinking chair. He had not shown respect. That was not a good decision. And now he has a problem.

Teacher N. is more than just a teacher. She taught Tinker Bell for two years and she's the extended care teacher. My children, because of my wretched and horrible job, must attend extended care. Also, Teacher N. has taken my children into her home during winter and spring breaks, again because I have to work. She is wonderful to us.

Its hard to be upset with Iron Man. He's a cute, gentle, sweet, loving boy. He's also sensitive. But this evening when I learned what he did, I was sad. And he knows it.

We talked at length about the fact that he's put himself in a very bad situation. He owes her an apology to solve this problem. We bought him new shoes yesterday. We made him take them off and give them to us. Tomorrow we'll talk to Teacher N. and the deal is that Iron Man can have his new shoes back when Teacher N. is satisfied that he can behave properly - no thinking chair for at least a week.

Our school also contracts with Soul Shoppe. Its a marvelous system of conflict resolution that teaches children to think about how they feel and to appropriately work through conflict, show empathy, and come to reasonable resolutions.

I really an getting a good deal for my money with our little school. It is a place of many blessings.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cake Pops

Bright red cake pops. I made 50 of them last night. Red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting encased in bright red candy coating. They sold like hot cakes at the bake sale.

On a more somber note... Today's bake sale was to raise money to help a woman in our community who can't afford her cancer treatments. She is a legal immigrant and doesn't qualify for aide. Don't get my started on my views of who is worthy and who isn't with respect to state/federal aid.

The cream cheese frosting was an experiment. It didn't turn out well enough to stand on its own, but to mix into the cake and make balls out of it was scrumptious.

Hey, there's a yummy word... scrumptious. I even spelled it right the first time. I can't spell. I just can't and I am too old to learn. As I often remind my immigrant husband, "Dear, you can spell English because you actually studied the language. I, on the other hand, was born speaking English and educated in California. Its a wonder I have even a rudimentary grasp of grammar!"

And there you have a feel for some more of my rather ardent opinions regarding matters of state.

I learned about Cake Pops from The Pioneer Woman. BTW - if you haven't checked her out, you are missing out on my favorite portal to the world. In short, Ree ROCKS! I wish I was her (but not in a scarey, stockerish kind of way or anything...) Anyway, Ree got the cake pops from Bakerella, who also completely ROCKS! And if I woke up and realized I was her, I'd be okay in a grand way!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Wailing and Cake Pops

They actually are related.

Tinker Bell informed us this evening that her best friend, Y. and Y's younger brother, Also-Y., will attend the rival school next year. Tink is taking it pretty well, but Iron Man immediately started to wail.

He sobbed those heavy sobs of someone who can't understand that the physical pain they feel in the region of their heart is from emotion that he can't even articulate. He sobbed for half an hour. I held him and his wet eyes searched mine trying to find the answers. I felt like crying too.

It reminded me of the afternoon my mother informed me of the divorce. She was crying, and then I was crying and she couldn't help me. She couldn't help me, though, as she truly couldn't cope herself. Turns out she's battled clinical depression her entire life and is the person for whom prozac was invented. Prozac saved her life; that and two really amazing psychiatrists. But I digress...

I held it together and held him close and rocked with him. After a while Zeus was able to distract him by talking about other things. I am yin to his yang; I am with the feelings, feeling them. R. is all about moving right past them just as fast as he can and getting to a more comfortable place. I love that about him. I think its what saved me at times when I could have drowned in my own feelings.

But I digress again...

We'll get through this change. New people will fill in the spaces. I'll take up the mantle of responsibility to ensure that my kids stay close with those kids. They really are great kids. They are smart and kind and come from a really great family.

Maybe tomorrow I'll tell you about the Cake Pops. Its what I am doing tonight between intervals of installing logical domains using prototype EVERYTHING! UGH!

Cake Pops... You are going to love 'em.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

If I Had Known

If I had known that buying new towels for Tinkerbell and Iron Man would motivate them to actually *want* to bath, I would have bought new towels months ago.

Needless to say, they aren't enthusiastic about bath time. But today it meant they could use their brand new towels from Pottery Barn Kids!

I am no spend-thrift. I would never, in my wildest dreams, decide that Pottery Barn Kids is a good place to buy anything - actually I wouldn't say that about Pottery Barn either. Yeah, their stuff is gorgeous, but at the prices they charge, I could buy out most of the home and kitchen section of my fancy new gigantic Target half a mile from my house! I'd have so much stuff I'd need another apartment just to store it all.

But, we've had there gift cards to the place, so... when school started last year we took the gift cards to the store and got the kids fancy backpacks and matching lunch boxes. They were gorgeous. But after 3 weeks they were falling apart. We returned them. So now we are going with the towels. I will wash them several times in the next couple of weeks to ensure that their craftsmanship is not so shoddy, because if it is I will return them.

Speaking of shoddy... Did I tell you what happened to my tea pot the other day? No? You gotta hear this...

So we had two really nice, large tea pots...

You know what? Its getting late. I'll tell you about the tea pots tomorrow. I gotta go to bed. The thing about Sunday night is I get this second wind around 4PM on Sunday afternoons and I just can't wind down and wrap things up at a decent hour.

More tomorrow...