Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Updates

Here's where I'll tell you everything I've done on the vacation:

Saturday, August 2
Yesterday was busy with a UCBerkeley tour.  And a tour of the Frida Kahlo exhibit at SFMOMA.  Ended the day with a marvelous Kronos Quartet concert. A great combo of academics and arts.

Friday, August 1
We've been in transit, so the blogging's been interrupted. But now I'm back on track. On Wednesday we took a vacation from our vacation. In the morning we dawdled and tarried. Then we saw Stepbrothers, the movie, in the afternoon. We did some school shopping for Teendaughter. Back at home we enjoyed our last supper with kin and spent the evening dawdling more and packing. Thursday was an early wake up, a sad goodbye, and a flight down to SF. We drove directly from the airport to the Mission District to eat burritos at La Cumbre. Then over the Bay Bridge to Berkeley to the Butler King residence. Yay. We walked on a windy path down near the marina and I saw a Western Grebe. Actually, everyone else saw it too, but I think it meant more to me than to the others. We had a great dinner out at a Thai restaurant and then returned to BKResidence for chatting with wine. We are now moving into some UCBerkeley tour activity. Go Bears!

Tuesday, July 29
We started out the morning with a tour of the Wing Luke Museum. It's the Asian American museum that has recently moved into a new building. The exhibits and the space were both v. cool. I bought some books in their gift shop. 16 Years in 16 Seconds will eventually be part of a Breaking Barriers at the Olympics textset. If you know of other books/articles for this project, please let me know asap. Noodles for lunch and then I parted ways with my family to roam around Elliott Bay Bookstore. After buying a new book by Monica Ferrell I took the bus for free down 1st St. and met the fam at Pike's Place Market. Checked out the flowers and tasted some food samples. Had a latte while taking in the view of the boats in the bay. Headed over to the outdoor sculpture garden and took some photos. I especially liked the gargantuan traffic cones. I think they were made by C. Oldenberg. Then we met Eve and Eli and toured the Theo Chocolate Factory. If you are a chocolate connosieur, you should get some of their chocolate asap. At the end of the day, adults left the youth at home playing poker and had a marvelous meal at Pair.

Monday, July 28
We went to Carkeek Park and took a hike next to a creek where salmon swim upstream. We didn't see any salmon, but that's neither here nor there. We checked out some views of the sound and then headed to Archie McPhee's a store where one can buy funny things. I bought a lobster and a large red beetle and a Mr. Bacon et un monsieur Tofu. We spent enough money to get a free devil duck. In late afternoon, the cousins met at the zoo and the adults went to a pub next to Green Lake and had a happy hour chat. Home again for some napping and dinner. Then we watched the best movie ever made, Station Agent. I did not want it to end. We're thinking about getting Netflix when we return home.

Sunday, July 27
We took the ferry to Bainbridge Island. Then we took a great hike through the Bloedel Reserve. The Bloedels lived here and made it the most beautiful gardens in the world, "as evidenced by plants." The hike was stunning. And amusing because Brother Bill hurt his ankle recently and had to be pushed around in a wheelchair. That gave us many opportunities to make jokes at his expense. Last night we had a tasty delicious dinner at Cafe Lago.

Saturday, July 26
We started the day with a trip to the Burke Museum on campus. We saw a photography exhibit about polar bears. Very cool. Then we ate some Pho. The youth went off to a block party event, while the adults went to the Seattle Art Museum, where I took some terrific photos of cars suspended above ground. I also learned more about who influenced the impressionists. After dinner at home, we went to a play called Street Car Named Desire, that you may have heard of. After the standing ovation, I started crying and felt much anxiety about possibly not being able to stop. But after a few moments of embarrassment, I did stop and went home for late night chatting with Eve. A perfect first day.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Trip

We're heading out on a trip to the western coast.  It's an early flight, so we'll be up and out by 4:30 am tomorrow.  Teendaughter felt that she could pack and still eke out time for a party this evening.  I hope she can sustain an upbeat attitude tomorrow.  The only other thing that's concerning me right now is the sad look of one of the hamsters. Either Hannah or Hope looks like she may be on her way out.  Wait a minute, she just got on her wheel.  She's moving kind of slowly, but maybe she'll be okay.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Trip

The trip to Cincinnati was fun. We visited the Underground Railroad Museum and the Contemporary Art Center before heading over to the game. #1 son got a lot of positive attention during the day since he was wearing his David Wright Mets jersey. Lots of Mets fans walking about. At the game, things were a different story. When #1 jumped up for Wright's homer in the third, a Reds fan screamed out, SIT DOWN! in kind of a mean voice. So maybe it's better the Mets couldn't maintain their lead. The walk back to the hotel could have been hairy scary.

Friday, July 18, 2008

The Room

Today I received some startling news from bosslady. I will be moving classrooms this year because we will most likely have too many kindergarteners coming to learn with us in autumn.  My new room is 1/2 the size of my old room, about the size of a postage stamp, but it has a great view of the downtown courthouse square so I've decided to be upbeat about it.  Once again, I've proven to be a team player at the school site.  I'm not sure anyone's noticing this, but they really should.  This type of positive attitude is a rarity.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Fun

Summer fun was interrupted by a day of working at the school site.  It's taken me a few hours to pull myself out of my failing-school-restructuring-doldrums, but with the help of a glass of wine and a Mets game, the job is getting done.  I'm happy to report.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Swifts

The school where I have employment has a chimney stack. In fall, chimney swifts roost there. At the planning commission meeting last night, neighbors spoke in support of these swifts. They want the school builders to keep the chimney stack when oldschool is demolished. Chimney stack might need structural support, so the architect said she could not make promises, but that she would investigate possibilities. Part of me thinks this is a little bit dumb, but the other kinder, eco-part of me was moved by the passionate SAVE THE SWIFTS speeches made by the neighbors. One gal suggested that teachers could make the swifts the source of the entire curriculum. She probably forgot that the swifts only show up in the evenings, when the peeps are home eating dinner. But if we put in a SWIFT CAM, (as suggested) that might not be an issue.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Pigs

I was really looking forward to seeing the guinea pigs at the zoo but when I got to the petting zoo, their enclosure was empty.  I approached a zoo worker and she was not forthcoming.
Me:  What happened to the guinea pigs?
She:  They're gone.
Me:  But what happened to them?
She:  They died off.
Me:  And you decided not to get any more?
She:  Right.
Me:  Why not?  I loved seeing the guinea pigs.
She:  That wasn't a good enclosure for them.
Me:  Really?  They seemed so happy.
She:  No, it wasn't.  

Alrighty then, thanks for the info.  Geez, way to interact with the public, zoo worker.  

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The Orchestra

#1 son did not want to come along for our evening at the park, listening to the local symphony orchestra.  But I saw him having fun, walking and talking with pals.
So I suggested that he should thank me for forcing him to go, but he refused to do it.  He freely admitted that he had a good time but insisted I should not have forced him to go.  When will this kid learn that I know what's best???  WHEN??? 

The Jobs

I do have work to do but instead, I'm socking in another fun activity.  I'll play now, and pay later.  Too bad Teendaughter is atoil and can't join us.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Summer

The summer's been full of fun and friendship. I've seen live music! had breakfast with pals! taken walks! read books! I have even, remarkably, written a LETTER! At this very moment, I'm filled with an attitude of gratitude for summer vacation.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Sushi

During our sushi dinner tonight, goodpal Menosky showed me how to enhance my bee picture.  Oohlala, I love it.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The Update

Late breaking news from KVS, who attended the school board work session last night. The new building will be built, on schedule. This pleases me no end. Our school system has had many problems the past few years. This week another principal quit abruptly. We hired and retired a horrible superintendent a few years ago and this impacted every tendril of the organization, I think. Were the problems brewing before he came and boiled over because of his shenanigans? Or can we blame him for our woes? Or are the problems resulting from NCLB pressure mucking up productive thought and action in schools generally? To get back to the update, our school will be built. And it will be stunning.

Monday, July 07, 2008

The Glacier


College Fjord

All my life I've wanted to see a glacier. Come to find out, Seattle sister and brother saw a few last week and donated these fotos to alittleleeway.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

The Tennis

While Husbandman is out playing doubles, I'm watching the Wimbledon final, reading the nyt, and drinking coffee.  So this is starting out to be a great day.  But this is odd.  I just read a review of a book called Film Club.  The author of this memoir is a film critic.  He let his teen son drop out of high school on the condition that he watch 3 films per week.  Our own #1 son would go for that deal in a heartbeat.  
Back to tennis.  Go Fedderer. 

Thursday, July 03, 2008

The Show

Kinsey Institute has an art gallery with odd hours. I've wanted to go there for years, and finally today I did. They have a juried show right now, featuring sculpture, photos, and paintings around the theme of human sexuality. It's a cool exhibit, but much of it is in a hallway, so you're walking by people working in their offices. I found myself as interested in the peeps as the paintings and was v. tempted to ask questions about what the research going on there. When you get your guest pass to enter the exhibit, you can buy polo shirts and mugs that say "Kinsey" on them, and those might be good xmas gifts I'm thinking. Let me know if you're interested.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Violins

This just in, from today's HTimes: In the coming school year, the little first grader peeps at schoolsite will learn how to play violins. It's a new project that's based on a Michigan violin program and university coordinators are "hoping it will help reading and language skills." I'm on the fence about this idea. First, it seems odd to give little kids violins for only one year. Second, I wish there could be more talk about loving and learning music, and less about hopes for academic skill building. Despite my misgivings, I'm tepidly and cheerily curious about the plan. I think the littles might like playing the violins.

We shall see, said the blind man, as he picked up his hammer and saw.