Ignorance Is, Well…Ignorant, Sometimes

What to write? Okay, check my email while I think. Then, my inspiration!

On the sidebar of my email was a place to donate to Feed the Children.

I haven’t donated to Feed the Children, but I do sponsor a child through World Vision, a probably 12-year-old boy named Freedom in Zambia. I forget how much the sponsorship is, probably $40 a month.

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Imagine living in utter poverty. My sister taught in Zambia as part of her master’s program. She said when people talk about poverty here, they have no idea what true poverty is. Even a family friend who is also a retired priest says that if you were born here, you have already won the lottery.

I guess I live in blissful ignorance. That is, until Christmas. Then the World Vision gift catalog comes. There goes my denial! In it are gifts for clean water, food, and education.

Here, we obviously have absolutely everything in that catalog. I love America, but it seems like for us, it’s never enough. I think we should take a deep breath and count our blessings.

Maybe It’s Just Me…

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The following is a list of things that are ingrained in our culture, extremely popular in 2017, and yet I can not stand. It’s often like me to go against the grain, but I don’t think I’m the only one who finds at least some of these annoying…

  1. Man caves (even the phrase bothers me).
  2. Dogs wearing clothes
  3. Selfies
  4. “The Walking Dead” (Granted I have never seen the show, but how desperate for entertainment are people)
  5. “The Housewives of….” (See above).
  6. Adults playing video games
  7. The solar eclipse
  8. Dabbing (Until my sister, a middle school teacher shared it with us I had no idea, but where do I begin
  9. All the fancy diets, Atkins, etc. (Unless they are for health reasons, what happened to eating right and excercing)
  10. Trump bashing (I’m a registered Republican, but on principal I didn’t vote in 2016. There is plenty I don’t agree with him on, but he is our president. Get over it and show some respect.)
  11. Adults celebrating Halloween
  12. Ripped jeans
  13. Toy dogs

Oops!

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It wasn’t quite THIS bad…

Everything about space has always fascinated me. Before a life event beyond my control prevented it, my dream was to be an astronaut. Not the eight-year-old “when I grow up…”dream, but I really was going to be an astronaut. I had written (now you know how long ago it was) NASA for an application to see what I needed in college, and was on a first-name basis with the woman in the astronaut selection office. I really was going to be an astronaut.

In retrospect, to be an astronaut you must like math and science. I liked neither. Oh, well, I was going to be an astronaut.

Of course, because everything about space was so interesting, of course my seventh-grade science project just had to be space related. To this day, I have no idea how I thought of my project, but it just popped into my head: “Does the Density of a Planet’s Atmosphere Affect the Impact a Meteor Would Have?” I simply threw rocks on a sand-covered paper plate that had either a Kleenex, paper towel, or washcloth on it to mimic different atmospheric conditions. My seventh-grade mind didn’t think of some things, like not all planets are solid, how was I sure I was throwing the rocks each time, etc.

I guess the judges at my school didn’t think of that, because I won first place. But besides being a nerd, I must to admit to being a bit of a klutz. Walking up to turn in my project at the district competition, the unthinkable happened: I dropped the plate.   My parents and I fiendishly recreated craters before the projects were due (picture us in the parking lot, using our knuckles to recreate the “meteor” indentations in the different atmospheres), and I thought we did a pretty impressive job faking the wonder of science.

I didn’t go beyond the district competition. I still wonder: what if I had been more graceful back then…?

Fingers Crossed

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Like anything with me, why I need to now be on a gluten-free diet is a long story—I won’t bore you with details.

But it’s for health reasons. Actually, healthish reasons.

When I learned that this was going to be my new food routine, I felt like someone pulled the rug out from under my feet. I love food! Especially Italian!! But they make gluten-free pasta now, so how bad could it be, I figured.

I remember the first thing I tried was a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Big mistake. I had no idea that sandwich bread is the most hated gluten-free food. And no wonder: the texture is so peculiar. Actually it had no texture. Almost like air.

I have been on it for a few months and slowly I’ve gotten used to it. Which is a good thing, because I’m doing a physical therapy trial that requires it. The therapist said most people have a gluten intolerance or sensitivity, but that there’s a test available that tells you for sure if that’s the case. I took the test to see if I’m one of those people, and I’m waiting for the results. If it comes back negative, hello gluten!

Wish me luck!

 

Star Student? Or Only Student?

Any parent knows how bittersweet it is when your child starts school. On one hand, they’re getting an education that will last them their lives. On the other, why can’t they stay your baby forever?

On Saturday my six-month-old Jack Russell puppy (“He’s only six months!?” my sister’s wide in horror/disbelief), Henry, had his first obedience class. No offense, son, but it’s probably a good thing it’s a private lesson.

It started in the backyard, but moved to the park. He is fascinated by our backyard. There is always some stick that simply can’t be left outside. Or some bug that needs chasing. In other words, he was just being a little boy.

Henry’s lessons are going to be on basic manners right now: sit, stay, come, etc. But he’s so friendly and people-loving and, well, I’ll just say it, adorable, that I think he would be an excellent therapy dog.

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Hard to believe this little guy needs obedience classes…don’t let his innocent expression fool you.

Now, if only he could get housebreaking down…

Critical Masses

We don’t have hurricanes here in California. Earthquakes are scary, but they last a few minutes tops, and then life, most likely, will return to normal. I can’t imagine living through a hurricane, having to leave all of your possessions behind and hoping everything is fine when you return home.

Watching the coverage of hurricane Harvey, it seems like the whole country is behind the victims, which is so refreshing because lately it seems like the whole country can’t agree on anything.

My uncle posted on Facebook a list of supplies you can donate to Champion Forest Baptist Church in Texas to help victims who have lost everything maybe start to pick up the pieces. It’s not a matter of life and death anymore, but it’s still critical.

Here’s a message from Champion Forest Baptist Church:

The following is a list of tools Champion Forest Baptist Church could use to help with their relief efforts:

Tools needed for Mudout:

  • Reciprocating Saws (battery powered)
  • Sheetrock saw
  • Utility knives
  • Demolition hammer (mini sledge hammer)
  • Sledge hammer
  • Hammer
  • Crowbars/wrecking bars
  • Chalk line/chalk
  • Floor Scrapers
  • Shovels – wide mouth for scooping debris
  • Wheelbarrows
  • Push brooms and floor squeegees
  • Loppers and saws for downed trees/limbs
  • Bleach – Sprayer to spray bleach in homes
  • Gloves
  • Respirator Masks
  • Extension Cords

 

Memories

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At a very young age I learned to love America. My elementary school was big on patriotism. We had school assemblies where we sang songs like “You’re a Grand Old Flag” and “America the Beautiful.” There were also memorization challenges: The Pledge of Allegiance probably in first grade and The Gettysburg Address in sixth, for example.

I credit Lincoln Alternative School with explaining, very clearly, ours rights as an Americans, and how voting is basically the best way of thanking the people who died for our rights.

Do you think our Founding Fathers would be happy with America today? It’s a question I think of while watching the news. I didn’t want this post to be a political debate, so I’ll keep my opinions to myself, but I’d love to hear from you.

Not Just For Kids

When anybody thinks of Dr. Seuss, they probably think of cats in hats. Perhaps an elephant named Horton who heard a Who, or a Grinch stealing Christmas. Reading those books at probably three or four years old, most likely on somebody’s lap, I was too young to appreciate the beauty of the rhymes I was hearing. Now at 34 I see that the words that were silly and fun are potentially life changing.

I was going to do a list of my ten favorites, but good ol’ Pinterest: They probably couldn’t decide either so they had to choose 30!

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Wedded Miss

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I watch “Say Yes to the Dress” every week (actually, stored on my DVR) and I love it, but there is one thing about it that drives me crazy. Every bride featured claims to have found her “soulmate” and have a magnetic connection to the groom-to-be. Most brides are their very early 20s and there have been some teenagers!

My sister got married earlier this month. They had been dating about four years. And she is 29.  I’m not married, and don’t plan to be, but you can’t find your soulmate until you have lived.

My parents basically rip this post apart. Mom was 19 and Dad, 21. In June they celebrated their 38th anniversary. I think 19 and 21-year-olds were more mature in ’79. No video games or texting, I guess.

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