Quote of the Day


phone + spa massage + new jeans + Cinnabon = better

My darling husband took the day off from work so that I could get away before I went stark raving. For some reason the last round of troubles just set me off and I couldn't find my way back to any sort of balance. Today helped a lot.
  1. I read all your supportive comments.
  2. My favorite chicken, Eva, who had been limping and winging-funny, is all better.
  3. Jamie took over all the child care. Feeding, transporting, micro-managing, the whole thing. (Boy, is HE tired!)
  4. I talked with my best friend and she assured me that I am not, in fact, a horrible person.
  5. I got an appointment with a real attachment therapist that drives up from the Seattle area once a week. You have no idea how hard it has been to find local attachment help.
  6. I talked with our home-study social worker and she gave me some good ideas.
  7. I went and got my first spa massage and then when it was over I stayed in the lovely spa robe and sat in the lovely spa waiting room and looked at the lovely spa waiting room garden and listened to my music and nobody spoke to me for an hour and it was so very very lovely. And quiet.
  8. I went to the mall to get some NYDJ jeans (last jeans purchase was in 2006) and about died when I saw the price. Then one of my former students showed up and showed me some better-fitting jeans and I got two pairs for around $40.00 total.
  9. Then I went to Cinnabon and bought little cinnabons for my family and went home, where I found
  10. A reclining deck chair that I had been wishing for for two years.
  11. I read all your supportive comments again.


too busy living to blog about it

Happy Anniversary to us -- 15 years.
5 yards of mushroom compost was our gift.
Day of baseball and yardwork.
Bonfire awaits.



a spring to-do list

This is just today's list. I need to come up with my big huge list for the season.

  • take chickies out
  • groom south flower garden
  • transplant peonies
  • meet darling husband for picnic and pre-practice practice
  • go to Dandy's baseball practice (sit in sun)
  • buy groceries
  • bring chickies in
  • grade second section of World Lit



the better world shopping guide

My mom gave us these handy The Better World Shopping Guide: Every Dollar Makes a Difference shopping guides for Christmas. I've blogged about them before, but I'm going to blog the details here as it helps me remember what I resolve to change in my own shopping habits.

First, cleaning products - our local Food Co-op just opened a branch out in my stomping grounds, so I can shop there now. I like not having to belabor the decision as I stand in the cleaning supplies aisle. I just buy whatever is cheapest. If the brand was truly evil, it wouldn't be on the Food Co-op shelves.

That being said, my favorite cleaning products are vinegar and baking soda (not together, though they are effective that way too -- they foam and bubble when combined - great on unclogging drains). I use vinegar on the floors and baking soda as my scouring powder.

I recently switched over from Tide (sob sob) to Seventh Generation laundry soap. So far I have no complaints and we all like the smell better.



keeping busy

Just not in a blogging sort of way I guess. We've been hauling dirt and planting seeds and doing home-school and enjoy a visit from an out-of-town relative and watching the chickies grow. The latter requires a great deal of time spent in a lawn chair next to the chicken ark, which suits me just fine.

Oh, and teaching. I'm working 66% of a a full load. Fortunately it is all online, so I can fit it in around the chicken watching.



bloggy haitus

Lots happening around here to divert my time and attention from blogging. Don't be alarmed if I don't post much for awhile.



He is Risen!

Twas a fine Easter celebration at our house. We attended my parents' church where we watched a U2 video to open the service and heard about the minister's new tattoo. Then we came home and served up a feast with the help of my super bil and mom.

After dinner we were treated to some music and then the kids went off to watch the Velveteen Rabbit, and I? I landed in the easy chair and may never get up. We've been cooking and cleaning for days, hard on the heels of a few days of heavy gardening. The house is clean, the fridges are full, and it's going to be too rainy to garden for a few days. Time to rest.



Chickies First Day Out

We put our chickies out yesterday for their first ever exposure to real sunshine and real dirt. They loved it. Here, I'll let them tell you all about it.

We are naming them after great women of history. So far we have Amelia Earhart, the chickie who is the most adventurous. (edited 7/5/09 to mention that Amelia turned out to be a rooster)

And Catherine the Great for our beautiful and imperious Crested chickie. And Phyllis for the one with the funny looking hair. This blond curvaceous chick is named Eva Peron. Amelia is in the foreground and the little penguin-colored chick is still awaiting a name.
Don't worry, we brought them back in before dark.



hunting: maybe not so bad

This is -- for me -- a huge policy shift. I've decided that hunting, which I have loathed without hesitation all my life, may be a good thing.
As I see it, there are four choices.

  1. Don't eat meat.
  2. Eat meat that is part of the industrial food chain with all the drugs, chemicals, fuel-costs, and animal misery that that involves.
  3. Eat meat that is part of the natural food chain that has a healthy diet and 100% outdoor access and a pretty good life until the bullet arrives.
  4. Eat meat that I raise here on my own land where I can make sane choices about what the animal eats and how it lives before it gets into my freezer.
Since I'm not going to do #1, options #3 or #4 seem like the only responsible options.


another growth post

Try to contain your excitement, as here is another growth report, with illustrations this time.



A Thomas Jefferson Education by Oliver Van DeMille

This book, A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the Twenty-first Century by Oliver Van DeMille, came to me highly recommended and though I liked parts of it very much, parts I thought were ridiculous.

In the ridiculous category is his advice that, if I want to learn Russian, I should just go read War and Peace in Russia. As simple as that. It makes me wonder if he is even aware that the Russian language uses a different alphabet. With a similar alphabet, it is possible (though probably not efficient) to study a text until letter patterns start to become visible, thereby giving subtle hints to a word's function -- that is, an en pattern in German usually shows a plural -- and, if one had the English text in hand, one might be able to decode some words, keeping in mind that syntax (word order) varies greatly from language to language. Anyway, as a professional and certified second-language educator -- Teaching English as a Second Language Certificate from Western Washington University + years of teaching English language both abroad (EFL) and here in the states (ESL) -- I think his advice is bunk.

That being said, I do appreciate his reading lists (the Dinotopia series is included -- have you heard of it? I have not) and these distinctions, which I have posted about before.
A. Bent stories portray evil as good and good as evil. Such stories are meant to enhance the evil tendencies of the reader, such as pornography and many horror books and movies. The best decision regarding Bent stories is to avoid them like the plague.

B. Broken stories portray accurately evil as evil and good as good, but evil wins. Something is broken, not right, in need of fixing. Such books are not uplifting (in the common sense of the word), but can be transformation in a positive way. Broken stories can be very good for the reader if they motivate him or her to heal them, to fix them. The Communist Manifesto is a broken classic; so are and The Lord of the Flies and 1984, In each of these, evil wins; but they have been very motivating to me because I have felt a real need to help reverse their impact in the real world.

C. Whole stories are where good is good and good wins. Most of the classics are in this category, and readers should spend most of their time in such works.

D. Healing stories can be either Whole or Broken stories where the reader is profoundly moved, changed, or significantly improved by her reading experience.

It did not seem to have enough juicy ideas to merit a whole book, and certainly not the price of a hardback. It would have made a better article than a book.



Friday Poetry: God has not promised

In this season of endless rain, both literal and figurative, I need this reminder.

God hath not promised
Skies always blue
Flower -strewn pathways
All our lives through

God hath not promised
Sun without rain
Joy without sorrow
Peace without pain

But God hath promised
Strength for the day
Rest for the labor
Light for the way
Grace for the trials
Help from above
Unfailing sympathy
Undying Love.

~ Annie Johnson Flint

Here is the coding if you want a button with a link to this week's round-up.

:: this post is part of the Friday Poetry roundup hosted by ayuddha.net.




I doesn't matter who is wearing it, and if you don't know, I won't say, but this is ugly. Doesn't this woman have a mirror? or a best friend?



preserving healthcare workers' liberities

Did you know that healthcare professionals that chose to not participate in life-ending activities are (potentially) about to be discriminated against? If this doesn't seem right to you, go here to learn more about it and to sign a petition. April 9th is the deadline.