Saturday, August 22, 2009

I could listen to this the rest of my life

LOVE STORY (Taylor Swift) meets VIVA LA VIDA (Coldplay) - Piano Cello - by Jon Schmidt

Monday, August 17, 2009

I can't believe I wrote this trash

I know I should post, but I'm lazy. I mean, I'm tired. I mean, I have two - not one, but two - large first-day packets to complete. So I'll I repost something from long ago. I don't think I have EVER sworn so much, in spoken form. But, it still makes me, without further ado, for your reading pleasure:

I love to read. I always have. I don't remember learning to read - I remember sitting on my mother's lap while she read to me, and ours was the kind of house with books everywhere (just as mine is today). "They" said I learned to read on my own at 3 1/2. I do know that I was the only kindergartner at our small school who read fluently the first day, and was allowed to check out far more library books than the other children. By the end of third grade, the school decided they'd taught me all they could about reading and literature, and I got to tutor the younger kids each day during literature class, right through sixth grade.

I didn't just read - I absorbed books. Especially after my mother died when I was 10 - there was no one to tell me that something might not be appropriate. I read "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich" when I was 11. I still have nightmares about it.

Some books stand out more than others. When I was 11 or 12 (that part of my life is awfully fuzzy) my step-father's sister (step-aunt? Is there such a thing?) gave me a book on....ahem.... reproduction. All that I remember is that the man lies above the woman. This confounded me - did they have to do it on stairs? Was there a special structure designed for this? Now, if the book would have said lies on top of, or next to, or knelt behind and slammed her like a greyhound, I might have gotten a clue.

So the point of today's missive (if there is one) is this: I read. I read a lot. Unless a particular book is spectacularly riveting, I'll generally have two going at a time. There was a brief period in my life when my kids were under the age of about 2 that I couldn't read - I'd fall asleep if I sat down and tried to read....but thank God, I got through that.

I read when I'm cooking, I read while blow-drying my hair. I read while I'm brushing my teeth. Not flossing, unless it's a large, hard-cover book that stays open by itself. I read to my kids. I read while my dogs are taking a dump in the back yard.

And, of course, some books are better than others. I never read any books about any type of sport. Or those mechanical technical engineery thingies. Some I will read and re-read forever, I love them so (The Handmaid's Tale comes to mind). Some disappoint, though I will almost always finish a book I've started, just to find out the end. These people are real, damn it, even if just in the author's mind, and I have to know what happens to them!

I just read a book that pissed me off. I don't think I've ever said or written those words before. I was so angry when I finished it that I couldn't go to sleep until 3 a.m. I wanted to find the author and throttle him.

It started with great promise. I've read Robin Cook's novels before, and have found them interesting. Granted, it's been some years since Coma, but I remembered it well. A medical mystery - something I can really wrap my mind around and try to unravel myself.

The end of the first chapter had me worried. Too many exclamation points. If your damn story doesn't tell me on it's own when something is supposed to be exciting, do you really think that a punctuation mark is going to help? A chapter or two in and I found the one thing I look for in paperbacks. A typo. A major typo. This was not a good sign. Affect for effect. This is third grade stuff, folks.

Anyway, I won't spoil it for you. I hate spoilers, even though I'm telling you now - don't waste your money on this piece of garbage!!!!! The denouement left me feeling just like I did when I found out my ex-husband was cheating on me with a 21-year old.

Oh, but I can't forget the epilogue, where the good author rails about the downfall of the practice of medicine in the 21st century. Actually, I agree with him, but I didn't need this ridiculous piece of crap to support his thesis.

Ok, maybe I was a bit cranky to start with. The King had invited his oldest friend to stay the night. I know, I know. Never let kids spend the night on a school night. But her mom had let him (ok, so his name is Jake) spend the night at her house once so that he could experience the life-altering attainment of his greatest goal - to walk to school. The short, five-minute walk that gave him such a sense of accomplishment, such joy, and a near-life-threatening exposure to poison oak.

So, now it was my turn. Jake's friend wanted to be driven to school - why, it would be almost like riding the bus!

A word to the wise - set your clocks back one hour. That way, you can lie to the children and tell them it really is 8:00 and time for bed, and they might just be asleep by 10:00.

So, it was in this frame of mind (or loss of same) that I approached the last few chapters of "Crisis." And was reminded why it's a good thing I sleep alone.

I threw it across the room.

Friday, August 14, 2009

An apple for the teacher

My kids start school Monday. How did the summer rush by so fast?

I want to thank every teacher out there....My kids have known the most wonderful teachers. Teachers who have brought out the best in my kids, and shown me sides of my children I'd never have seen, otherwise.

To the teachers who've know, and loved, and challenged, and taught, and expanded, and cracked up my kids:

A giant, giant, THANK YOU!

And yes, that was yelling.

Now I just have to remember to stay out of your way....

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Fight like Susan

Blogs can be wonderful; blogs can be terrible. Blogs can teach, entertain, challenge, disgust....when someone finds a blog she likes, she can spread the news like wildfire.

Sometimes I hopscotch through the web of blogdom. A link here, a mention there. Before I know it, I'm six degrees from where I began and two degrees back to someone I know.

For the first time, yesterday I met a blog friend, Hal from Dispatches from the Away-Dad Nation. We've been reading and commenting on each other's blogs for some time. I love reading about his wife and son, and his travels while flying helicopters. Our sons are close in age, and he writes wonderful stories. Wow - he's much taller than his photo.

Through blogs, I've tried new recipes, laughed new laughter, cried new tears. I've prayed and watched and waited; rejoiced and linked and joined. I've stayed up far too late; read until my eyes were far too weary.

One of my favorite blogs was found through a link from someone else - truly, I don't exactly remember. Was it Ree from Confessions of a Pioneer Woman? Probably. I've found some great bloggers through Ree. One of these days I'm gonna make that drive to the ranch and cook with her, I swear. Or maybe I'll just let her cook for me. I'll sleep in the Lodge, ride a horse, and laugh A LOT...I know this.

It's, written by Elden. You'll find it just over there on the right.

I can ride a bike. I'm not a cyclist. I'd like to be, but I'm not.

But that's not why I've read his blog. Though his posts on cycling are interesting, even to the non-cyclist, I've really been reading to follow the story of his wife, Susan.

Win, Susan.

How many comments did I leave that ended with these words?

Susan was fighting a battle with cancer, and today she died. Though I knew it was coming, it was still a shock to read the words.

Do yourself a favor. Hug your kids, kiss your spouse, write your sibling, call your parent, call your friend. Read Elden's blog, and most of all:


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Plans. I have PLANS!

I'm counting down.

Three more work days. Three. 24 hours of work - wait, 25, because tomorrow I have a meeting at 7:00 a.m.

The last few weeks have been....interesting.

My kids are pretty much sick of each other after a summer of togetherness.

We'll had WAY too much turmoil at work. Thankfully, I'll never again have to listen to the swinging exploits of a certain coworker of mine (and I don't mean swinging from a chandelier - though that may have been involved)...she was let go. AND. SHE. WASN'T EVEN. THE ONE. WHO WAS FIRED...FOR SEXUAL HARASSMENT. Yeah, it was bad.

It's better now.

I got sick.

I'm pretty much better now.

There has been something else, too. Not sure yet if it's good or bad, but I'm not ready to write about it yet.

I've been contacted by someone from my misbegotten youth, and it was really nice.

I met a blog friend, and it was great.

And now I'm going to get ready for fun...Friday, Turtle Bay. Saturday...packing (ok, that kind of sucks, but it's gotta be done). Sunday...ON THE ROAD, BABY!

But know this...

I have a housesitter with a 9 mm just waiting for you to break into my house because you know I'm gone.