Category Archives: Uncategorized

Leaving for Foster

I didn’t have to do anything except gather the plastic bags full of his shirts and pants and socks and underwear and shoes. Bags with books and teddy bears.

All he had.

I stood in the room with others, including his foster Mom.

We just waited watching him weep. Watching a child’s heart break.

He wept so silently and so constantly.

He didn’t know how much love sat in that room with him.

He doesn’t know that today may be the greatest day of his life. The day that changes everything for the better.

Tonight all I can think of is a boy who is in a house that isn’t his. No matter how bad that one was, this one isn’t his.

I’m sorry for what life has visited upon you. You touched people today who will think of you always.

Sleep tonight little man.

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How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?

I don’t post much anymore and this post is long and it’s not funny but I really hope you will read it. I ask you to read it. And share it because it matters not just in Portland, not just in Oregon but throughout the U.S.

My mother was a teacher before I was born. She began her career in upstate New York and then moved to Portland, Oregon. In Portland she taught at Boise (pronounced Boyce) Elementary in North Portland which in 1963-64 was a very nasty neighborhood. Race relations in the U.S. were not good at that time (not that much has changed) and the Albina neighborhood where Boise is located, was a violent, rough place.

Police-in-Albina

Albina 1969

Joan, my mom, was 100 lbs of Irish power (her maiden name was Powers). She was a tough little customer and had tons of colorful stories from her time teaching at Boise. Joan taught a little girl named Maria Pia Gompetro (sp?). Maria was a spitfire and when parent-teacher conference time came, Maria had to sit in and translate for her mother, who was from Italy. My mom would say, “Maria needs to settle down and pay attention in class.” Maria would translate and her mother would nod and smile. “Maria, I don’t think you’re telling your mother what I just said.”

She had an African-American boy in one of her classes who she walked by one day and placed her hand on his back to look at his work and he winced. She took him out of the class and looked at his back. In her exact words, his back looked like “hamburger”. She called his mother to come in and his mother said, “Don’t you worry Miss Powers, I’m making sure so and so does his work.” Her method of making sure the little guy did his work was whipping his back with a wire coat hanger. My mother told her if she touched him again, she would have her arrested.

My mother had a theory, had a goal of identifying children who were smart and had the drive to do better and getting them the education that would get them out of the ghetto they lived in. She went to Boise school officials and Portland Public School officials and begged them. “I can tell you who these kids are, get them out of here and give them a chance.” Nope. No can do, that’s not fair.”

Floyd. I can’t remember Floyd’s last name. Floyd was far too old to be in the 4th grade at Boise. He was smart and funny and his home life was a violent hell hole. Floyd loved my mother and was very protective of her. He would walk up and sit on the corner of her desk when the class was acting up and lecture them all to shut up and listen to Miz Powers. He was NOT happy when he met my dad, Joan’s fiance at the time, when my Dad came to the classroom. But he skeptically gave his approval of the marriage. A couple of years later, my mom saw Floyd on the local news. He was arrested for armed robbery.

Fast forward to 2016. I am tutoring reading at the Portland Public School for homeless children, the Community Transitional School. I tutor two kids for 30 minutes each. Homer is in kindergarten and Maria is in 1st grade. I am sorry to say that Homer is a lost cause. He is a tiny, darling African American little boy who has no attention span, can sort of kind of read a few words. One of my kids couldn’t read in kindergarten but she also had a stable, engaged family and a safe, comfortable life. Homer doesn’t have that and I think society’s ills will win with Homer.

How do you solve a problem like Maria?

Oh my dear little Maria. Maria and I are pals. M is for Maria and for Maggie. I told Maria that my middle name is Mary, “Maria is Spanish for Mary.” Maria told me, “No, Mary is English for Maria.” This little girl is a live wire and she is smart. A couple of days ago, during our 30 minute time together, Maria said, “that word can’t be ‘babies’, baby has a Y in it.” Hurrah Maria! We spent the rest of our time thinking of nouns that end in Y but their plural is ‘ies’. Maria picked up on that, I didn’t point it out to her.

This kid has it goin’ on. She doesn’t want to be too obvious with her smarts but she brings it when it matters. She is the daughter of Mexican immigrants. She is smart. I want to help her progress. A few weeks ago I spoke to the reading program coordinator asking how can I spend more time with Maria? And the coordinator thought that Big Brother/Big Sister would be a good idea. Nope. The school doesn’t have a connection with them. Okay, what about Trillium Family Services? A local Portland non-profit that does amazing work with children and families. Nope.

Unfortunately, CTS, as a school, does not match students with mentors through any programs. There are a number reasons for this. One is that we are not able to extend the same services to each child. It is a matter of equity. We want our families to feel we are providing a service of teaching and helping every child.

 

Are you shitting me?! What if mentoring at CTS caught on?! What if we, the privileged of this country no matter what color, what if we go out and try to save one starfish at a time? What if it’s not fair? There is still good to be done, children to be helped and nurtured, it’s not always fair but it can work.

Must Maria, who is only 7, be lost to the lowest common denominator simply because if she gets extra help, it’s not “fair”?

I was raised by Joan Powers O’Connor and my siblings will remember one of Mom’s favorite lines, “life isn’t fair.”

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Constitutionally Speaking: Guns and Religion

Some of you may be like me, trapped in an On Demand, Hulu , Netflix cycle of must watch TV that requires a spreadsheet to track schedules, characters and plots; which allows me (and perhaps you) to avoid the news detailing what a mess this country is.

The news is typically so dispiriting that I have stopped watching, listening, reading much of it at all. Still, the news reaches into my cocoon. I’m going to stick to stories local to me but the hue and cry is heard throughout this great nation of ours.

This fall there was yet another mass shooting, this time at Umpqua Community College in the southern Oregon town of Roseburg.

Constitutionally speaking, I’m going to look to the right and all the people screeching about their 2nd Amendment right to bear arms. I’m looking at you “2nd Amendment Voters/Advocates”. Please read the text of the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States before you tell me and the rest of the country about your right to own an automatic weapon.

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Do you see those first four words about the well regulated militia? Do you get what that means? It doesn’t mean that everyone for any reason can own a gun or an arsenal of automatic weaponry that would horrify the Founding Fathers of this country. I am not part of a well regulated militia thus I do not need to keep and bear arms. The Oregon National Guard can keep and bear arms.

I’m not for banning all guns. I think there should be a ban on assault weapons. Automatic assault weapons are made for hunting human beings, that’s not okay. I think we should enforce the myriad laws we have for background checks and that should apply to online sales, gun shows, pawn shops, retail stores, etc.

I also think that the people screaming about their 2nd Amendment rights, should SHUT. IT. Unless they are a member of a “well regulated militia” and I don’t mean regulated by your Uncle Wally and run out of his barn. If you are a member of a police force, US armed services, the National Guard — then please feel free to assert your Second Amendment Rights. If not, stand down.

bear arms

And this guy can also bear arms

Ohhh, look over there on the left…they are all snickering about the loser conservative gun rights people on the right. Hee Hee, Maggie sure told them!

Well, folks on the left, I’m now going to have a chat with you. It is holiday time, time to decorate the holiday trees and send the holiday cards and make sure that Portland Public School choirs don’t perform at The Grotto’s (The National Sanctuary of Our Sorrowful Mother) Christmas Festival of Lights, the largest Christmas choral festival in the WORLD. As I said, I am keeping it local but there are examples around the country of…wait for it, the separation of Church and State! Right!? Separate those two before real trouble starts!

churchandstate

Inigo Montoya for the win!

Ahem, now that you folks have got your First Amendment knickers twisted, just a little reminder that the words “separation of Church and State” appear no where in the Constitution. The First Amendment to the Constitution reads:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

The First Amendment leads with “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” because our Founding Fathers came from Merry Old(e) England, where the government, then a monarchy, said to all of England, “your church is the Church of England.” Period. They added, “If you don’t like it, too bad, you cannot practice any other religion.” As I’m sure you all know as informed and interested American citizens, the Pilgrims left England so they could practice their particular religion without the King putting them in jail or gaol.

The phrase “separation of Church and State” comes from this letter written by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury, CT Baptists in 1802. The phrase in no way means there is no room for religion in public life, it simply means the government will not dictate what religion its citizens practice and that said citizens are free to practice whatever religion they wish. Or practice no religion. Up to you, American citizen.

Again, as the 2nd Amendment folks need to get their facts straight so do you Separation of  Church and Staters, and again, SHUT. IT.

I am not saying that the discourse should end on topics so important to the well being of the United States of America. I am saying get your facts straight before righteously throwing around buzzwords like “the right to bear arms” and “separation of Church and State”.

“There is nothing so absurd but if you repeat it often enough people will believe it.” — Dr. William James, widely recognized as the Father of American Psychology

 

 

 

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Profoundly Resilient

Today is Brigid’s 16th birthday!

It is hard to believe that just four months ago this happened:

crash volvo

Brigid was in the back seat behind the driver.

Here you can see her car door stuck to the grill of the car that hit them.

crash truck

 

We were in the hospital for 10 days.

That's Oregon Health Sciences University up on the hill.

That’s Oregon Health Sciences University up on the hill.

Brigid in her bed, hooked up to tubes and monitors, being poked and prodded.

brigid rm 24

After five days, the pain was so great and the healing so limited that they operated on her and put in a plate to stabilize her pelvis and six screws to hold it in place.

Last week I took Brigid to a see a counselor, believing that any teenager who had been through such a trauma and had her life changed so drastically (missing months of school, not dancing anymore, etc.), might need to work through some of it. Jan, the therapist who I trust and respect, met with me and Brigid for a few and then I left and she and Brigid talked. I came back at the end to be told “Brigid is profoundly resilient.” Jan credits me with staying by her side throughout, the fact that Brigid has no memory of the accident, Brigid knows and accepts that she is deeply loved by family and friends, and Brigid is Brigid. Profoundly resilient.

Yesterday we went to lunch and birthday shopping.

brigid16

“And I got a birthday bracelet from Tiffany!”

I went for a walk in the woods early this morning and thought about Brigid and her 16th birthday. At one point, I was overcome with emotion and gratitude; grateful to God for blessing us with Brigid back in 1999 and again for watching over her the night of the crash in April.

Brigid, I wish for you a long life filled with love for family and friends, quiet kindnesses and raucous celebrations.

Happy Birthday my sweet girl and many many many many more.

EPSON MFP image

I Got that Call

I’m typing this from Brigid’s hospital room. Early Sunday morning, she was in a car going back to her friend’s house from a run to McDonalds. A drunk driver blew through a 4 way stop and t-boned the car. Brigid was in the back seat on the driver’s side and took the bulk of the impact. She has a fractured pelvis which we still don’t know if she will need surgery to stabilize it. In the big picture, she is fine.

She had on her seat belt and because of that, we are in the hospital and not the morgue.

The drunk driver went to jail. I don’t know much other than that. There are no skid marks on the road so he never even thought to stop. Brigid’s friend’s (the driver of the car) mom has pictures of the car that Brigid was in as well as the drunk’s car. I don’t want to see them but I have heard they aren’t pretty.

Please make sure you and everyone you know and love wears a seat belt at all times, front seat or back. Every damn time you are in the car.

 

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Mag’s Wheels

My parents bought me my first car ever when I was a sophomore or junior in high school, I’d say 1981/82. They spent $750 on a ’75 Monte Carlo. It was dark brown with an off-white vinyl hardtop. It was a two door model, each door being approximately 6 feet long and weighing 500 pounds. I had to sit on a couch cushion to see over the steering wheel and needed binoculars to see to the end of the hood. It was a giant pimp car, which I told my mother and she said if I kept whining I would never drive any car again. I used to leave the keys in the car wherever I went hoping against hope that it would be stolen. Of course, it wasn’t because who the hell would want that car?

This is not my actual car, that I know of, but it is identical.

This is not my actual car, that I know of, but it is identical.

When I went away to college my parents sold that car. They were punishing me for some reason.

I didn’t have a car in college because my school was in a village and I didn’t need one. I didn’t have one for the three years I lived in Boston after college. Boston has the T and nowhere to park so I didn’t need a car there either.

When I moved back to Portland in 1990, I got the first car that I had to pay for, a 1989 Honda Accord.

Again, not my car but close enough.

Again, not my car but close enough.

I loved my little gold Honda Accord. The headlights flipped up when turned on so that was pretty spiffy. I had that car when I got married the first time. I remember filling it up with wedding gifts to be returned, eventually winding up with a trunk full of stuff that I couldn’t figure out where it had been purchased. One lovely spring day, I played hooky from work and went garden shopping with my mom. I realized as we were pulling our wagon up to the car to put all the plants in the trunk that it was full of wedding gifts. Oh dang! I opened the trunk and Voila! Someone had gone into my car, which was never locked, and had taken all the gifts so I could put the plants in! Win. WIN!

After having two kids, I realized in 2000 that I needed a bigger car to hold all the gear. I got a 1998 Ford Explorer.

Still not my actual car but make model color, my car.

Still not my actual car but make model color, my car.

It was more like a truck but got me where I wanted to go. No real good stories from this car (and I understand that you may not have considered the other car stories “real good”). This car had a key pad to open the car so I didn’t need to bring my keys into the gym with me (that tells you how long ago I had this car….the “gym” …..riiiigghhtt). One day I went out to open the car and the combination wouldn’t work and I was stuck at the gym! I called Mitch and told him about this fiasco and he said he would come get me and then I looked up and realized, I was trying to get into the wrong car.

In 2006, I went out to lunch with my pal Danni who wanted to look at an Acura MDX. I went along for the ride and wound up buying a 2003 Volvo XC 70 wagon. I loved that car. I had the old Volvo until March 6, the day we left for Nevis. That day the transmission light came on, the car gasped its way into the driveway and I said, “I’ll deal with that when I get home.”

Upon returning from Nevis, I had to figure out what to do with the dead Volvo in the driveway and figure out a new car. Salesman Derwood was working on the new car deal and what sort of trade in, etc. I went on Craigslist to see what Volvo XC70s were going for and saw an ad:

Looking for a Volvo XC 70. Must have clear title, less than 170,000 miles, and be broken, preferably the transmission or timing belt. Prefer a car owned by anyone named Maggie.

It didn’t say the Maggie part but other than that, that was the ad and I sold the damn thing for $1500.

FINALLY, yesterday I got my first ever NEW car! It’s a 2015 Ford Escape just like my pal Janet’s in SF!

My actual car. My actual new car.

My actual car. My actual new car.

My Ford Escape has Bluetooth in it and all my phone contacts are in the little whatever thing in the car and I can just say, “Call Katie Denver” and it calls her! I can ask for directions and it will give them to me. And and and….it has Sirius satellite radio free for 6 months. Sure, they are just getting me hooked knowing that I will pay for it after six months. This means that I never need listen to anything other than 70’s, 80’s and Frank Sinatra music for the rest of my days.

Which, as it turns out, is very similar to what I listened to in that ’75 Monte Carlo.

 

 

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Golf at Cat Ghaut

I need to write some Nevis stories before I leave on my next vacation tomorrow morning. Nevis is a very small island. It’s NOT a big place.

There is a guy on Nevis who knows everything anyone would ever need to know about Nevis. How do I get an international driver’s license? Where is the Diet Coke? Which cash machines have US currency? I need a fishing pole. Where can I play golf? This guy knows it all, and all the Nevisians know to ask him. His number was on the note pad next to the phone in our villa. He is the GO TO GUY on Nevis.

And his name is Marlon Brando.

Yep. Marlon Brando.

Here is a picture of him that I found from a Google search. This is Marlon Brando:

Courtesy Flickr.com

Courtesy Flickr.com

Marlon Brando told us where to find a golf course on Nevis because the two we knew of wouldn’t work for us. The Four Seasons Resort course charges $350 per person to play 18 holes which includes the cart, you don’t have to use the cart but they are going to charge you for it whether you do or not. The Four Seasons was cost prohibitive for us. Across the road from where we were staying was the Nevis Golf Association course. It’s 2 holes and is only open to members so again, we were out of luck.

Derwood and I visited Marlon Brando’s (no one calls him just Marlon) garage/pharmacy/quick mart one day to find out where to buy fresh fish and where the rumored 3rd Nevis golf course is located. Happily the fresh fish and the golf course are near each other.

This is what he told us, “Go down this road until you see a bus stop before the airport runway. Make a left and the fish guy is on the corner. Go up to the top of that hill and that is where the golf course is. It’s in someone’s yard.” Then he said he would stop by sometime because we had never done any paperwork on our car rental. He also rents cars.

It took us four attempts to find the course because we weren’t sure what a Nevisian bus stop looked like and while the road is Charlestown Road, there are no street signs.

Cat Ghaut Golf sign on the driveway gate of the owner's home.

Cat Ghaut Golf sign on the driveway gate of the owner’s home.

As promised it was in someone’s yard. We parked and got out of the car. Looking up the road we saw a large monkey crossing into the forest and that is freaking weird. When you have only seen a certain type of animal in the zoo and then you see them just wandering around, it’s kinda scary.

big monkey

We didn’t take this picture. We didn’t get any monkey pictures because they don’t hold still for very long. See how this monkey looms like Big Foot? That’s what the big monkey looked like… approximately the size of an 8-year-old child but looming, like Big Foot. Later when we got back to the villa, there were some monkeys down the path from us as we walked to our front door. It’s just weird. I don’t know what monkeys do, what if they just ripped my face off?

Back to the golf, when the four of us finally went to play Cat Ghaut’s 12-hole course we found it to be unlike any golf course we’d ever seen. No one works in the pro shop hut and it took us a bit to find the sign telling us how the Cat Ghaut Golf system works. In the hut are five or six old golf bags full of rusted golf clubs, a bucket of balls and a basket of tees, some of which were not broken. All we had to do was select our clubs, grab some balls and tees, and pay our $10 US into the little slot cut into the wooden counter.

Hut

Hut

 

Here we are on the golf course.

Derwood, Maggie, Kitty, Geoff

Derwood, Maggie, Kitty, Geoff

$40 total to play this funny little course on a hill above the Caribbean Sea. On the advice of Jefferson, the greens keeper, we tried to follow the map on the score card to find the 1st green; but by the time we were looking for the 2nd green, Jefferson said the map was no good.

It was so much fun we played Cat Ghaut twice. It was one of my most favorite parts of our trip.

Guess who holds the course record?

Marlon Brando.

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The Madness

I know I said I would post about my vacation to Nevis, but it’s March Madness time here in the U.S. and I wanted to get my picks in for those of you who may need help with your brackets.  I’ve been doing this for years and so far have a perfect record of never having picked the winner or enough wins to cover my $5 entry into the office pool. Watch and learn.

The March Madness is a basketball tournament played at venues throughout the U.S. by teams of basketball players. The tournament bracket (literally: broken in fours, which is where the phrase Final Four comes from) is divided into four sections for different directions that players travel to get to the tournament. I have selected my winners for the 3rd Round which will then inform how the rest of the tournament plays (meaning “play”) out.

Here are my prognostications (NSFW).

MIDWEST:

  • Kentucky is going to beat Hampton to advance because they are a #1 seed and the only reason I would even think of choosing Hampton is because my first fiance was from North Hampton, NH.
  • Purdue will beat Cincinnati because I can’t think of why they wouldn’t.
  • Even though Buffalo is a #12 seed they will win out over #5 W. Virginia because I have never been to WV.
  • Maryland will move on over Valparaiso because I had a Terps Lacrosse tshirt in college.
  • Butler over Texas because while I love many Texans, I don’t care for Texas.
  • The Notre Dame v. Northeastern game is a tough call for me because I’m Catholic and once lived in Boston. Notre Dame. God wins.
  • Indiana over Wichita because I saw “Hoosiers”.
  • Kansas over New Mexico because I’ve never been to NM and spent the Bicentennial in Kansas with my aunt and her family.

WEST:

  • I have picked Coastal Carolina over Wisconsin because my first husband had a friend who coached soccer at C.Carolina. This was a tough call picking between two popular Western states.
  • Oregon will beat OK St. (they probably won’t but I have to pick Oregon, total bullshit).
  • Arkansas over Wofford because Wofford? What?
  • I am going with a Harvard upset over N. Carolina because I lived in Boston across the river from Cambridge.
  • I have to go with Ole Miss over Xavier because I like the sound of Ole Miss.
  • Baylor (who by the way will make it into the Final Four) is going to beat Georgia St. because my pal Amy from high school went to Baylor.
  • Close call between #7 seed VCU and #10 seed Ohio St. but my best pal Lucy lives in Columbus, so Ohio St.
  • Arizona will win out over Texas So. because Arizona is actually a Western state and again, Texas.

SOUTH:

  • Duke will beat Robert Morris because they have a whole team and he is just one guy. I don’t even know why that game is being played.
  • San Diego St. goes down to St. John’s because St. John’s has a college affiliate program with American Academy of Dramatic Arts where my daughter, Annie, will start school in September.
  • Utah over SF Austin because Fletch goes to Utah in the movie of the same name and my siblings and I say, “You go to Utah, you STAY in Utah” a lot.
  • Georgetown over Eastern Washington because Georgetown always seems to beat other teams, unless they lose.
  • UCLA is going to beat SMU because my best pal Kitty’s daughter is a freshman there.
  • Iowa St. over UAB because I think the UAB is actually a small country in the middle east and they should never have been allowed in the tournament anyway.
  • Iowa will advance past Davidson to make matchies with Iowa St.
  • Gonzaga will not only beat North Dakota State but advance to the Final Four, all because the guy in my office who organizes this bracket went to Gonzaga.

EAST:

  • Lafayette over Villanova because Lafayette is a similar small liberal arts school to my alma mater Colgate.
  • LSU beats NC State simply because it seems like something they would do.
  • Wyoming moves on past N. Iowa because Iowa was getting a little greedy.
  • Louisville will beat UC Irvine because they are Louisville, and they use bats which many people think isn’t fair but teams are allowed to use any equipment with their team name on it.
  • Boise St. will win a close one over Providence even though I have been to both cities.
  • I’m going with the numbers on the Oklahoma/Albany game. Oklahoma, a #3 seed, will show up in the Final Four.
  • Georgia beats Michigan St. for no good reason at all.
  • Huge upset….Belmont over Virginia because Annie likes a boy who got into Belmont.

So if you review all of that information and carry the 3, you will see that the 2015 NCAA Champion Basketball team winner will be Gonzaga.

You can take this to Vegas.

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My Writing Space

I have been meaning to post photos of my first ever writing space but my time was taken up with last minute work on an event that took place on Saturday.

And then Sunday I was busy not moving and watching “Scandal”.

And then Monday was taken up with looking at the results of the event and doing some trouble shooting. One thing I learned from the event is that I am a genius at silent auction pricing. I really am so damn good at that. My live auction ideas need some work as two packages that I thought were super spiffy, were not. At least not to this crowd. Don’t you think that a private bocce party at a vineyard with your friends and food and wine would be fun? Or a guided salmon fishing trip? Nope. Those were the two packages I was thrilled about and I was wrong.

Earlier today was taken up with my dear, sweet car going into the shop. Then hearing from mechanic Goran, in his lovely Slavic accent, tell me, “there is so much” ahhhhh ahahahaha. Oh I know Goran, there is so much and I am a crappy car owner but here is a kidney, my favorite jeans, my new neon pink Sharpie pen, and my retirement savings….please let me know when I will see her again.

Finally, here is my new desk and writing/work space which is in the former sitting area of my bedroom. Don’t you all have sitting area’s in your bedrooms? A snug area where you put an armchair and some books and framed photos so you have a cozy place to pile your dirty clothes? Yeah, well the cute vintage chair that I never had reupholstered turned into a scratching post for the cat and a combo hamper/filing cabinet for me. It’s gone!

In its place is this lovely desk and chair purchased at the low low Litko discount from my sister who is moving.

IMG_5209

There it is! I love it although it reminds me that I need new carpet/flooring in the bedroom.

Let’s look at other stuff in my room, this is going to be so much fun!

IMG_5210That there is my night stand with my book piles and my dad’s shillelagh which I will use to crack an intruder’s head, if need be.

Last summer I subscribed to the Friday, Saturday, Sunday package of the NY Times because the Oregonian is now the size of an Archie comic.

IMG_5211That is a selection of the NYT sections I haven’t read yet because three days of the NY Times’ is too much to read if I am to keep up with Scandal, Downton Abbey and start watching Better Call Saul. The cat’s tail is featured in the upper right hand corner.

I will try to write a post from my new desk and let you know when I do. I’m so used to writing at work, it will be difficult to compose in a different environment. Do any of you bloggers have that issue? I get very hung up on where I write. Anyone? No, just me? Check.

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Misc. January

Brigid is no longer a student at Lake Oswego High School. She’s not a student anywhere right now but we will get her registered at her new high school tomorrow. You know the best thing about withdrawing your kid from high school? When the counseling office admin says, “Don’t take this the wrong way but you have such a cute figure, you look great in those leggings.” Here’s news, there is no wrong way to take that. I will now strut my stuff for the rest of the day!

Unless you are me, of course.

Unless you are me, of course.

This month is the three year anniversary of this blog. I have over 5,000 followers and I think some of the new ones are real people. I tried to write my Dear Judy blog but it didn’t work. I couldn’t write it. Isn’t that odd? It’s just typing in the same program that I’m typing in now but the voice was different and I couldn’t get comfortable. I’m happy to be back here and I thank all my pals for sticking around for the past three years and am happy to see some new regulars.

Now that Annie is in at AADA, I have decided to bother with financial aid. I have done absolutely ZERO research into how all of that works. My strategery there is “if I look into financial aid, I will jinx her getting in…. so do nothing.” And hello, it worked!

Derwood broke the computer. We have no computer at home. He dropped the laptop and the screen broke inside. It’s a bummer and I need to buy a new one but it is also quite liberating. I’m free to do a ton of other things because I’m not looking at the computer. For those who are new here, I don’t have a SmartPhone so I just go without the interwebs! This past weekend, I had no email or Facebook or Google or IMDB, it was just fine.

broken computer

The shit got real when the wifi went down and I couldn’t get Hulu. Hulu is my new thing. I found “Devious Maids” there, which is fabulous trash. Hulu has Bob Newhart and Mary Tyler Moore. I tend to live in other decades sometimes so those shows are perfect. AND! I have started watching “The Mindy Project” which is laugh out load, choke on it funny. Then the wifi went down. I called Comcast. The computer told me they were aware of the problem and that I was not alone. It was my “area”. My “area” was down. This was the part of the weekend where I started seeing spiders and picking bugs off me. I’m nothing without my wifi. I tried On Demand but “Mildred Pierce” was too theatrical, too sophisticated.  And I think Kate Winslet got thin. No one fell down or had ridiculous birthday parties with a best friend in a wheelchair or looked like a normal size woman. None of that happens in “Mildred Pierce”.

It took an hour or so but the earth returned to its axis; “The Mindy Project” and all the other joys of Hulu returned.

I’m also reading. Finished my 2nd book of the year The Secret History by Donna Tartt. She is one of my new favorite authors. She is a gifted storyteller. I highly recommend this book. I also highly recommend that when you hit the last 50 pages or so, make sure you have peace and quiet to read them. You don’t want any interruptions. You don’t want people coming in and out of the room where you are reading to see if the IPhone they found is working or if that is the old one or why it rings if you call it from the same number on the new phone. You don’t want that. Trust me.

credit to Geek Blogger 04

credit to Geek Blogger 04

 

 

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