Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Interesting House Guest

David brought a co-pilot with him this trip. He has done that before. Ken is staying with us. He is a recently retired Marine. He is was a pilot and flew C somethings in three "engagements" Both wars in Iraq and Somalia. Very reserved. Still has the hair cut he sported for 20 years. Very quiet. Hard to get anything out of him. It did not take him long to figure out Bush was not my favorite person. He was surprised that I was mad at him for how he sent the troops over with no real thought with how to get them back. He was surprised that I was upset because the troops did not have the support they needed either there or here when they returned.

I told him I was glad this country was not condemning those that went to war like they did during Viet Nam. I don't think I have been forgiven for being a Democrate but then maybe those are just titles anyway.

Oh, M-E is better today. I have to go get her up. Stuff that we fight off, she takes and really makes it her own. I guess it is hard to fight any illness if the meds you are taking are killing off all your fighting cells.

End of January. I cannot believe it.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Books

I have been reading more. I have not been taking down Chrismas Stuff (yes the Village is still up but the elves work all year round). I have not been doing Laundry. I have not been cleaning the basement, I have been reading and doing a bit about round the edges.

As has been pointed out by my mother, I read weird books. I read two kinds of books and I don't think they are weird.

They are either substanial or sort of quirky and funny.

The substantial books always have dark covers and dark topics but must not just be sad to be sad. I can not handle those kinds of books.

They have lots of 12 cent words and complex charactors. The books make me ponder about lots of things like Mummification( The Egyptologist) Eastern Europe and Dracula ( The Historian) or the plague ( A Year of Wonders). Often times I am not seeking new topics to consider but love to learn new things. The world we live in swirls by with it's 10 second sound bites and then moves on to the next topic with such haste that it is impossible to know anything in any depth. Like what has happened to Sharone? We learned every deep secret about him and then.........

I also like very funny books. I loved "Bridget Jones Diary. It has a sense of self confusion and acceptance of that state in life that still makes me laugh. I loved "Confessions of a Shopaholic", and "Lamb the Gospel according to Biff Christ's Childhood Friend." I loved "Lady of the Lost and Found." I am loving "Hypocrite in a Poofy Dress and look forward to finishing the "Deep Dark" ( Sunshine Mine disaster)

I don't know what draws me to books. I love to laugh, learn and escape. I want to learn or consider a topic in a new way. I love to crawl into the world of another's perception for just a moment.

I will finish the laundry and move the Christmas Tree, David is going to be here for a night so we should get the lights down and the curtain rod put up so I can put up the curtains I made from some really pretty bright(of course) material that Belle and Karen gave to me.

See, I know what I am supposed to be doing and I will make some progress.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Raccoons and Whooping Cranes

I bet you never knew they sounded alike. I was channel surfing and came across a program where they were hand raising chicks. They are raised to never see a human and listen to the sounds of the flock while growing up. They make a clicking /purring sound that brought Sadie to life.

She is on high Racoon alert. Her alert status increased as the wind blew and she just knew they were out the window having a party. What a night.

I have long had an interest in Whooping Cranes. One of my parent's college roommates worked with them. When he started there were 16 in the wild. He would fly to Canada and swap out a few Whooping for Sandhill eggs. The Sandhills would be raised by the Whooping Cranes and the Sandhill raised the Whooping Cranes. The Sandhills had great success rates but the Whooping Cranes never formed mating pairs, they were a bit confused. 200 live in the wild now, mostly in Canada and between Florida and Maryland.

We would receive Christmas letters all about the new baby Whooping Cranes from Mr. Erickson. I will have to check on the population count..

In case you were worried, Sadie has patrolled the back yard and it is all clear. She has been out there three times. I feel safe now.

I do wish the sun would come up.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

THE FUNNIEST PIECE I HAVE READ IN YEARS

Here's a prime example of "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" offered by an English professor from the University of Colorado for an actual class assignment.

The professor told his class one day: "Today we will experiment with a new form called the tandem story. The process is simple. Each person will pair off with the person sitting to his or her immediate right. As homework tonight, one of you will write the first paragraph of a short story. You will e-mail your partner that paragraph and send another copy to me. The partner will read the first paragraph and then add >another paragraph to the story and send it back, also sending another copy to me. The first person will then add a third paragraph, and so on back-and-forth. Remember to re-read what has been written each time in order to keep the story coherent. There is to be absolutely NO talking outside of the e-mails and anything you wish to say must be written in the e-mail. The story is over when both agree a conclusion has been reached.

The following was actually turned in by two of his English students: Rebecca and Gary.
THEIR STORY:
(first paragraph by Rebecca)

At first, Laurie couldn't decide which kind of tea she wanted. The chamomile, which used to be her favorite for lazy evenings at home, now reminded her too much of Carl, who once said, in happier times, that he liked chamomile. But she felt she must now, at all costs, keep her mind off Carl. His possessiveness was suffocating, and if she thought about him too much her asthma started acting up again. So chamomile was out of the question.

(second paragraph by Gary) Meanwhile, Advance Sergeant Carl Harris, leader of the attack squadron now in orbit over Skylon 4, had more important things to think about than the neuroses of an air-headed asthmatic bimbo named Laurie with whom he had spent one sweaty night over a year ago.

"A.S. Harris to Geostation 17," he said into his >trans-galactic communicator." Polar orbit established. No sign of resistance so far..." But before he could sign off a bluish particle beam flashed out of nowhere and blasted a hole through his ship's cargo bay. The jolt from the direct hit sent him flying out of his seat and across the cockpit.

(Rebecca)
He bumped his head and died almost immediately, but not before he felt one last pang of regret for >psychically brutalizing the one woman who had ever had feelings for him. Soon afterwards, Earth stopped its ointless hostilities towards the peaceful farmers of Skylon 4.

"Congress Passes Law Permanently Abolishing War and Space Travel," Laurie read in her newspaper one morning. The news simultaneously excited her and bored her. She stared out the window, dreaming of her youth, when the days had passed unhurriedly and carefree, with no newspaper to read, no television to distract her from her >sense of innocent wonder at all the beautiful things around her.

"Why must one lose one's innocence to become a woman?" she pondered wistfully.

(Gary) Little did she know, but she had less than 10 seconds to live. Thousands of miles above the city, the Anu'udrian mothership launched the first of its lithium fusion missiles. The dimwitted wimpy peaceniks who pushed the Unilateral Aerospace disarmament Treaty through the congress had left Earth a defenseless target for the hostile alien empires who were determined to destroy the human race. Within two hours after the passage of the treaty the Anu'udrian ships were on course for Earth, carrying enough firepower to pulverize the entire planet. With no one to stop them, they swiftly initiated their diabolical plan. The lithium fusion missile entered the atmosphere unimpeded. The President, in his top-secret mobile submarine headquarters on the ocean floor off the coast of Guam, felt the inconceivably massive explosion, >which vaporized poor, stupid Laurie.

(Rebecca)
This is absurd. I refuse to continue this mockery of literature. My writing partner is a violent, chauvinistic, semi-literate adolescent.

(Gary)
Yeah? Well, my writing partner is a self-centered, tedious neurotic whose attempts at writing are the literary equivalent of Valium.

"Oh, shall I have chamomile tea? Or shall I have some other sort of F--KING TEA??? Oh no, what am I to do? I'm such an air headed bimbo who reads too many Danielle Steele novels!"

(Rebecca) As*h@le . (Gary) B*tch!

(Rebecca) F**K YOU - YOU NEANDERTHAL!!

(Gary) In your dreams, Ho. Go drink some tea. ---------------

(TEACHER) >A+ - I really liked this one.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Happy Holiday Family



They live down the street. They are really, really, really! into Holiday Decorations. Liz Rosback just plain hated them. She told me once that she was sure they all had matching holiday sweaters for each season and wore them while decorating.

They are sort of out of control. I have not taken a picture of the Valentine Decorations but they have been up since January 6th. They will soon disapear for the giant Easter Eggs.

Why am I complaining? I guess because my Christmas lights are still on the house. I have unplugged most of them. I have the village still up and the giant ornaments. The tree is off the porch and now has to be cut down to size for the compost people.

I guess I should be happy just know that someone in the neighborhood has their act together.

High School Applications








Candles lit in ancient ritual beseeching the Gods and other powerful entities to assist in goal. Prozac would also help if I had some.








A new rite of passage for the 8th graders is the

HIGH SCHOOL APPLICATION PROCESS

It is sort of like college. Can you remember what activities you did as a 3rd grader? Were you asked your future goals and plans for high school? Did anyone care if you had done community service? Oh, well, I guess were were watching The Monkeys and reading Gone with the Wind and wondering if we were going to get asked to dance.

So it goes like this:

First you have to visit the school. This requires permission from all the teachers and then a report back to the academic Vice Principle.Then you go to a variety of Open Houses to tour the school and see if the programs they offer are ones that will fit for your child. They you fill out the packet. Recommendations need to be done by the Teachers, The Priest. Grades and test scores need to go to the school. Then there are the:

Why do you want your child to go to Blanchet Essay

Dear Admissions Director. I want my child to go to Holy Names but you are our second choice in case she does not get in. I don't want my child to go to such a big school with so many BOYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! are you nuts. You have a thousand students and BOYS she does not know. She is really cute and she is going to figure it out and spend hours on the phone and have her heart broken and worry about her hair and ...............
She needs to stay focused.

I am not sending her to Seattle Prep because of the rowdy and obnoxious boys that have plagued her class for 9 years. I hope they are going there and not to Blanchet We are so glad to see them go somewhere and we know they can not go to Holy Names.

Thanks for considering my daughter. She would be an asset to any school. Did I mention we really want her to go to Holy Names. Could you call and recommend her?

So then you package it all up and send it off. I of course found a great folder and added a very cute picture and a note written on one of her Art Cards. She is quite the artist.

Now I can guarantee you, the amount of tension at the schools is scary. Kids are freaked, Parents are freaked, Teachers are freaked. We are very calm, right now. Maybe it will get worse when we find out. (That is when I freak because this costs money that is not readily available but we will make it work.)

Trust me, this month I will be lighting lots of candles.



Wednesday, January 18, 2006

My Second Favorite Christmas Present


Of Course because I purchased a new washer the Car wanted a present. New Radiators are such nice special accessories.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Trees on the Porch


Some people feel the urge to rush through life. They do things in very predictable ways. If they start to unload the dishwasher, they finish, if they take out the garbage they get it all out, they never leave a few items for next week.

Well, I am not one of those people. My goal was to get the tree out of the living room. Accomplished. I am not sure when it will leave the porch. I am sort liking the look. What do you think? Oh, I found out that I have not accomplished anything until the Nutcrackers are in their boxes and put away.

Do we not need them for Valentines Day? I thought the Nutcracker was a love story........

Sunday, January 15, 2006

The tree is down the puzzel finished the basement organized the pictures in albums, the garage..........



Dreams are very important things...........
Baby steps. so what if the tree is still in the stand on the front porch
so what if the boxes are only partially labled
so what if there are pictures all over the house

We have to have goals.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

12th Man?

What is that and why should I care? I thought that it had something to do with the Seahawks winning 12 games.

I guess I am a bit behind.

M-E is better. She sounds like a long term smoker and has little or no energy. Given how sick the other kids have been, I am a believer in Tamiflu.

Books worth reading CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC. MARLEY AND ME, and of course THE HISTORIAN. I still don't know what happened in the Egyptologist./

RAIN: 25 DAYS. I think that if no on had mentioned it we never would be counting. I don't really notice the rain until the houses on the clifts begin to slide. That gets my attention.

Sadie is shredding paper and bags and.......... I took her for an extra long walk. I think she is asking me to get the tree out of here. Oh, well, I can vacuum up paper. I am going to try. I am really attached to the tree and thinking maybe I will give up and become Mrs. Fabersham.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Sick, Sick , Sick

Nasty bug. It is Influenza A. Tamiflu has been administered. Soup is on the stove. Chicken and mushrooms. She does not like celery, cooked carrots. I am going to put in snow peas and some zucchini because I have to do that. It just looks wrong in it's current form.

Now the trick is to keep it from becoming something really nasty.

Drink lots of fluids, avoid human contact. Wash your hands and pray.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Chinle Flea Markets

Mom loves to shop. She has been our personal shoppers for a very long time. Boxes of stuff shows up and if you ever get on her list you will be very blessed.

Belle and Karen receive many many boxes. They have received things like potatoes, shallots, beans and other goodies like movies and beanie babies. Recently Mom sent a big box of snap lid plastic containers. She has left several here and they are very handy. The box of containers never arrived.

The post office seems to not be the most accurate, nor problem solving institution. Things just don't always make it into their box. Evidently Belle and Karen do not stand out in Chinle. I can only imagine that a town of 8000 people has more than one Dr. Foster and her partner Karen. I am sure that there is plenty of room for confusion.

Belle was at work and her secretary came into the office with a cool snap lid plastic box. Belle remarked that she really wanted to get a hold of a couple of them. Glenna looked at her and sadly remarked "I wish I had known, I would have picked one or two up for you at the flea market."

Well, that's a relief, the box did arrive!

I don't get Hem/onc Parent of the Year for 2006

I was a very bad bad Mom. M-E started coughing on Saturday night. Whitney was sick and so are a bunch of other children. They were all hacking like 46 year smoking coal miners. I heard about the cough, the sore throat, the achie body. The flu.

Well she hit 101.9 and I just stopped taking her temperature. She was sick, she had what the rest had, I just could not face a trip to the ER on Sunday night. I don't have my car back and our hospital bags are not packed and they are not going to make us stay and they are very inefficient at the ER and we would have to wait more than than an hour for a blood draw and I could take her to the hospital in the A.M.to the clinic where things run like clock work.

So, I gave her a couple of tylenol and went to sleep. Granted it was fitful but it was in my own bed and she was in hers.

I let them know we were coming in and sure enough. ANC 4200. She does not have pneumonia and she just needed a liter of fluid to replace all the blood they drew and then off to home.

Okay, so what it is the problem? Oh, yeah. She is at risk for infection in her Port. That little dohicky that has a line that goes into her heart. I had forgotten about that problem.

I have been scolded, by lots of people and have been forgiven. Maybe.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Back to School keeps us hopping

Big steps. M-E spent the night away from home. I had two days by myself. I read, I worked on the puzzle, I did not perform all the laundry steps but am thrilled with my new Santa Present. I have wanted a front loading washer since I abandoned the one at the condo almost 12 years ago. My machine started to make that "noise" the one that comes and goes and then one day leaves your machine full of water.

I guess I really bought it for the Laundry fairies that have been so nice to come and try and teach me the entire process. Remember

a. Sort
b. Wash
c. Dry
d. Fold
e. Put away.

I am sure those last two steps are too complicated for me to do. I am so certain being clean and dry should be enough.

I will try and put a picture here soon.

Well lets see. The Sierra clan was sick but finally ended up here for an evening. No one was nearly impressed enough with the book I found "Isabel and the Hungry Coyote". It had Spanish words and everything. Isabel is still a bit under the weather.

The week was exhausting but we have made it to the end. I have to face the Christmas Take Down process. Of course I am sure I can put all of Christmas away in an orderly organized manner that will include cross referenced indexes and inventories that will be kept on a spread sheet with instant data base access. All items will be in their appointed boxes and safely tucked away for easy retrieval for next year.

Yes, I agree. I need to be put on drugs very very soon.