Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Flat Stanley

Ros and I brought Flat Stanley out to see campus today.  A pal in New York is doing a Flat Stanley project for school.  I hope our pix get to her.  I've had to send them a few times because of large attachment size.  It's like Flat Stanley has attachment disorder.  Which makes sense, as he's sent all over the country, into the homes of strangers.
Good luck on your project, Em!  We loved having Stanley in the Hoosier state.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Turkeys

Saturday, in the Park.  I think it was the fourth of July----

A perfect Saturday.  I shopped for new glasses this morning.  Then we headed out to a movie.  THEN, we drove to Story, Indiana for a pleasant dinner.  All four of us.  On the way home we saw some deer and some turkeys.
Last weekend I was working away at artful school, so it feels lovely to have the day to spend with the fam.  Tonight, I'm flying solo, watching a show about some guy who may have murdered his wife.  Not sure if he did it or not, but this guy seems a bit shady.  While I watch, I've been learning more about the artists chosen by the teachers to study next year.  School's just around the corner, and I'm feeling mostly geared up.  A few more days like this one and I'll be good to go.

---- People reaching, People touching, a real celebration....

These are Chicago lyrics about Saturday.  FYI.

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Burgers

We made papier mache veggie burgers today after talking about Claes Oldenburg's 2 Cheeseburgers. I thought the burgers were beautiful and fun.  Making art puts me in a pretty good mood.  I'm thinking of drawing some burgers on the iPad tonight.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Toughness

Yikes.  Arts camp inservice wasn't as fun today.  This is the day the teachers started working on their units. I was running from floor to floor, trying to bring resources to teachers. The unit design was challenging and there was some peevishness on the part of all parties.  I take things personally, so a harsh comment sent me into a bit of a tailspin. At lunch I took a walk, bought myself a refreshing bottle of water and sat on a bench for 5 minutes.  I also took a pill that helps people feel less anxious.  When I got back to school, I decided to stay with just one group for the afternoon. We worked together amiably and we got some stuff done.  I felt helpful and part of something fun.  Moral of the story:  walks, benches, medication, fun.  This is my plan for coping with stressful days when school rolls around soon.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Learning

Today we learned more about the great Jacob Lawrence.  Thanks to Good Pal Menosky, I had all the books that were shared with us and I knew a lot about Mr. Lawrence already.  I told my kinder teacher pal, "I'm not trying to act like a know it all.  I just LOVE Jacob Lawrence."

One of our Artful teachers had to leave today.  I bonded with that gal.  She embodies drama, flair and fun.  She gave me a small leather book before she left.  I was so moved by that gift.  Thanks SS.
Artful Learning is a bit like going to a cool summer camp for grownups.  I love it. I want to live a more artful life.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Project

I heard Fresh Air the other day.  Terry G. interviewed the director of Project Nim.  Project Nim is a documentary about Nim Chimpsky, a chimpanzee who lived as an experiment.  Humans tried to raise Nim as a human child, and they taught him American sign language.  The experiment went awry and Nim didn't play along as planned.  He even bit a hole in someone's cheek.  I want to see this film and I also want to learn more about animal language studies.  Nim died at age 28, from a heart attack.  He had some good times and some bad times.
On another note, tomorrow our school starts 5 days of workshops about learning artfully.  I'm ready for the learning, peeps.  I'm ready for the learning.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Stories

Found a new show called NY Ink.  It's about a tattoo parlor in NY.  The stories people tell about their tats are both moving and fascinating.  As I watched I wished I had a tattoo with a story.  I'm going to be thinking about this. I'm sure there's a tattoo out there for me.  I just have to find it.
I'm heading in to work, peeps.  Cover me.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Laze

It's a jammy kind of day.  Got in at 2 am.  A tough re-entry.  Feeling slightly discombobulated. But the good news? Las Vegas trip was surprisingly satisfying. 3 new colleagues on the trip were v. fun to get to know.  One said to me last night, "This was like going from 0 to 60."  Also cheering was getting to hang out with the old crew. We even learned a few new tricks to pack up our sleeves.  School Improvement Recommendation of the day: Faculties should travel together to Las Vegas annually.  That place is a bonding place.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Strip

After a day of listening, a quartet of us ventured out on to the strip.  That strip was super hot, I've got to tell you that.  We saw an eifel tower replica.  And a venetian reproduction.  Bellagio fountains.  The people here are moving and shaking.  They appear to have some plans they're putting into action.  My own plan was foiled.  I wanted to sit pool side after a walk stripside.  Come to find out, the pool was closed.  So there was just a long talk in the room with Sandra and some crackers for her stomach that was wonky.  And some blogging for me. Hot Day in ReplicaLand.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Boarding

In a transition period from a vacation with all fun to a work trip with some fun and some work.  I'm at the airport and in 9 minutes I will start boarding the airplane.  I wonder if anything will happen that would be considered untoward.  Lost luggage?  Emergency landing over the Rockies?  I try to adhere to the maxim that I don't worry about stuff I can't control, but LegalSister disputed this assertion on a few occasions, and I have to admit I've become more of a worrier over the years. Worrying is ridiculous, so I'm working on being CAREFREE.  7 minutes to boarding.  I should stop blogging.  I should probably not add links.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Cheer

The flowers at Pike's Place Market stun the senses.   I love that the main tourist attraction in this city is an actual market, with people buying and selling fish, jam, flowers, cheeses, and assorted crafts.  We had dinner at Bite of Seattle.  Drizzly but fun to sit around International Fountain, watching people and listening to fun blues.  You make me want to shout!  We came home to watch a fine film.  Son of Rambow.  It's all about friendship and creativity.  Sweet young actors.  If you want to see it, you should.

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Vegas

This may seem puny minded, but it's how I'm feeling.  Tomorrow I'm going to Las Vegas for a conference.  There are few places I'd rather not go than Las Vegas.  I'll tell you why.  People tell me Las Vegas is like a DisneyWorld for adults.  You may remember that I do not like DisneyWorld.  I don't want to go a place with a faux Eiffel Tower or a replica of the Taj Mahal.  Why would they build these things?   In France, there has been talk of building a replica of the cool caves with the paleolithic paintings.  They're doing this because oxygen from visitors will cause mold to grow, wrecking the paintings.  That's a good reason for building a replica of something.  Otherwise, there's no reason to build replicas of other things.  Just think of a new thing to build.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Vacation

Puget Sound.  Denny Creek.  Volunteer Park.  These are places we've visited and been rightly impressed with.  The weather is cool and the scenery is stunning.  Yesterday we hiked a trail called the Al Emerson Nature Trail.  We are wondering how to get a trail named after us.  If I had a LittleLeeway Trail I would sit in a lawn chair at the starting point to that trail all day long.  And I would greet each hiker personally, welcoming them to a fabulous trail experience with comments like, "Thanks for coming by" and "I think you're in for a treat." Where would your trail be?  Mine would be somewhere near the Al Emerson Trail.  It was lovely.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Books

This is what we're reading on Vacation:

Husbandman:  Deadwood by Peter Dexter.  Learning quite a bit about Wild Bill and Calamity Jane.

20Something Daughter:  Our Man in Havana.  She hasn't told me anything about it, but it seems I should have read this already.

#1 Son:  Kite Runner.

Me:  State of Wonder by Ann Patchett.

When we were all on the plane reading, that was probably the first time ever the four of us were reading simultaneously in the same space.  Our fam seemed super literary at that moment.   And that was pleasing.

Friday, July 08, 2011

The Reunion

Today I had to have a diagnostic mammogram because there was something amiss on my last mammogram.  No prob, Bob.  Just had some overlapping tissue.  No worries. Had an hour of squeezing breasts and ultrasound oddness.  But then Dr. Radiologist came in with the thumbs up.  For today, I do not have cancer.  It's always nice to hear about the overlapping tissue because then you can relax a bit.  After the news I had horrible nausea for a few hours, probably because I had been so stoic for the last 24 hours, but then things calmed down and Friday carried on in its humdrum happy way.  Then after all that #1 Son returned home from camp with some wild tales from jazzland.  Happy Weekend, Dears!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

The Tomfoolery

This has been a day of tomfoolery.  Running here and there.  Summertime pranks.  Hanging with little people with their little shticks.  They need more cookies.  They need to climb up on this desk.  They need to squeeze the ducks, check the pink wristwatches and pretend to know the time.  There's something energizing about hanging around with these peeps.  Do I miss those daze?  I resist anything that smacks of regret or remorse, but how can I not?  The little peeps slay me with their babble and their cocked heads and ridiculous over-expressiveness.  Fun stuff hot summer. 

Sunday, July 03, 2011

The Singularity

Husbandman's on a jet plane right now, returning from Denmark.  #1 Son is at JAZZ CAMP.  20 something daughter's off on a weekend fete.  It's nice having the house to myself.  Drinking coffee.  Watching Wimbledon.  Reading NYT.  I've been a putz on the C25K, so my plan is to get out there today and finish week 2.
Don't know why exercise should be such a challenge for me.  I like when I'm doing it.  I like the feeling when I'm done.  But getting myself to do it is always a big psychotic ordeal.  My new goal is to be more carefree about life, so I'm going to work at not making a huge ass deal out of this.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

The Bear

 Yup, we treated the visitors right.  We brought them down to the limestone polar bears and took their photos, making a sort of triptych.  These visitors have known us these many decades past.  And they do kindly have low expectations when they come to our town. A town some may call languid. A polar bear triptych really pleased them greatly.  Jane in P & P says, No one will solicit our society after this.  But I believe that the triptych on the polar bears will make our Berkeley chums desire our company more and more in future.

The Review

As today was a hot, humid, sultry day, I took myself off to Bad Teacher.  This is one of those films that you really should see if you want to.  There is a BAD teacher and a GOOD teacher and a couple of silly men.  It's quite funny.  I liked the rock band segment, where a group of teachers who called themselves Period 5, sang really horrid covers.  I also liked the segment where Cameron Diaz screeches at some kids running down the hall.  These scenes made the movie feel comfortable and familiar. Well done, makers of Bad Teacher!

Gratitude #9: Power of Song

We've been listening to , singing, and reading about, songs for social change.  Fables of Faubus, Which Side Are You On?, Wavin' ...