Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Too Much Stupid?


You wanted it, you got it.  Find out whose fans are more stupid.  Based on Twitterers who are fans of "famous" people.

I am determined to ride RAGBRAI in 2012.  But first I need to start biking.  Oh, but before that, I need to get a new bike.  And before that, I actually need to get out to several bike stores and look at bikes.  I probably should also learn a lot more about maintaining and fixing bikes, and how RAGBRAI works here in 2010-11-12.  I'm thinking I need to sign up with a charter company.  Well, lots to learn before the snow flies.
My brain is really mush.  Which is funny, because the kids are heading back to school and have to get into gear with the whole thing.  Good luck to them.  I'll just continue to coast along.

What did you want to be when you grew up?  You know, in elementary school when they asked you that?  My ambitions--first female president.  Yeah, I know, I'm a little behind in that goal.  In order to acheive it, I figured I needed to be a lawyer.  Yeah, missed that one, too.  What the heck am I doing now?  Oh, yeah, this. (Well, not exactly that organization, but what they represent) We're bringing history to life, one person at a time.  (Sounds like I'm raising zombies)
My husband is turning forty soon.  I feel like we need to make a big splash about it, but he's not all that excited.  It's interesting, I saw an FB status post from a friend who was mourning her 20s, as she was turning 30 soon.  Basically, I told her no sweat, the 30s are awesome.  And I'm looking forward to the 40s as well, because my kids are bigger and then can take care of themselves more.  It's all around a good deal.  Which is why I can't understand mourning your 20s or 30s.  Life just keeps getting interesting.

I wanted to plead one more day of Prisoner of Summer (POS badge up in the corner), but I think I need to move on and get my calendar straight for the fall.  Soccer, dance, practices, events, work, play, it's all coming to a head and it will be a downhill slide to the holidays.  So busy!

Click the button for more random.  It's fun, you'll see.

Friday, August 27, 2010


I don't know, these weird me out.  Ick.  See them here.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Not so famous quote, but one you should ponder

Freedom of religion doesn’t mean freedom to never have to encounter anyone who doesn’t think or live the way you do.

--James F. McGrath comment on Unreasonable Faith.

Ok, now discuss....

Thursday Goodness

We should appreciate having our indoor toilets and sanitation facilities.  Some people aren't so lucky in the world.  I think we need to keep top of mind the fact that probably the majority of the planet doesn't share in the wealth and luxury we take for granted.

Standing in a Really Long Line: Toilet Queue Serves Indian Village Effort to Promote Sanitation Awareness

In honor of World Toilet Day, nearly 850 Janadesar villagers aligned themselves in front of this newly constructed toilet. Eighty percent of Janadesar’s households have access to a toilet, making the village a leader in sanitation issues in the region.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: So I'm behind...


I didn't mean for Tuesday to get away from me.  To keep this random, I am sure you have all see the stuff about the crazy Chinese traffic jam.

Oh, and when your daughter says that Pinkie Pie needs new batteries because she sounds funny, just say you don't have the right screwdriver to get to the batteries.  Or you will get renewed sing-along with Pinkie Pie episodes that haven't been done in months, but now are suddenly the best thing since sliced bread. (and NO I did not buy that thing at $129.  I didn't know they had gone up so much in value.  I will be Ebaying that baby later.)

I think zucchini is an astringent.  I grated two extremely large zucchinis to freeze later for bread.  I squeezed out a lot of juice (different websites advised that), but now my hands feel all tight and dry.  Yuck.  Where's my lotion? (and those things I thought of all while I was in the bathroom.)

I recovered on Monday from a fantastic 12 hours at Irish Fest on Sunday with my kids and my Irish friend and her kids.  We did a lot, but not all of it.  I am sure we could have used a couple of days to do everything.  We did, however, get to see Gaelic Storm, my daughter's absolutely favorite Irish band (I like them a bit too).  They started out in Cali, but are made up of ex-pats.  They got their big break as the band in the steerage section in the movie Titanic.  It may be the only band she knows, but she loves the music.  I even found out Gaelic Storm was doing autographs.  It was brilliant (to use an Irish phrase).

Here she is getting the autographs.  (there was a splash pad at the place, so she had just been in her swimsuit splashing and was still too wet to put her shorts on.  Sorry she looks half dressed.)  They were very nice to her.  It was like an assembly line, but they gave her a couple of posters, some temp tattoos and signed her bag, too.  If I had known, I would have said that her favorite song was What's the Rumpus?  You'll find out why in a minute.

Irish Fest has these neat family passports and every stop has some type of craft or thing to do.  These were black shamrocks you scratched off to make a design and see colors underneath.

Many, many acts from the US and Ireland, and other places I am sure, were on hand for great entertainment, including musicians, poets, dancers.  These are kids from the area that had learned to play Irish instruments in a band.  They were pretty good.

Tug o' war contests, a few hurling matches with a chance to try hurling with a hurley.  You could buy drums and whistles, jewelry and clothing.  Some Irish food, but none of us thought that was all that great.  Which is too bad.  This would be the chance to showcase good Irish food.  The mead was really good though.  We didn't make it into the Jameson tent for our flight of whiskeys.  We had kids with us, you know.

Topped off the evening with Gaelic Storm concert.  Since it started at 7:30 pm, we thought we could stay for a bit with the kids.  We stayed the whole time.  It was a blast.  Except that they didn't play What's the Rumpus? My darling girl was a wee bit disappointed at the end of the concert.

(I know, it's a beer advert, but honestly, I don't think the kids noticed.)
We were having too good a time.

She's a concert goer alright.  She screamed her head off at intervals throughout the whole concert.  
(Pay no attention to the lady in the short sleeved green shirt.  Though her disposition at this moment may scream "Wild Child" to you, it's really a hoax with smoke and mirrors.)

Better randomness can be found by clicking the button at the beginning.  Keely has threatened to make a new one.  I don't know if I need to go and get one yet or not.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Thursday Goodness (yeah, I think this counts)

NPR article about the flap about Laura Schlessinger who said some things that people didn't like, then she quit, saying she had to get her 1st Amendment rights back.

The gist of NPR's article is that she has always had her first amendment rights.  What she didn't have was economic freedom to say what she wanted.  When she quit her show that depended on advertising to pay for her and everyone else's salary, she gave herself freedom from economic pressures.  By going through her blog and You Tube and books, etc, she targets her specific audience and doesn't have to please a larger more general audience that advertisers often target.

I'm glad someone puts it straight.  Thank you NPR.  See the article here.

I really should be asleep, but for that stupid Coke at 4 pm...

Mind on overdrive, not sure why.  I am tired, but I don't want to sleep.

So, it's a good thing I'm listening to recent top 40 hits or I wouldn't have known what my son was singing when he went, "P-p-p-p-p-p-pokerface, pokerface" out of the blue.  He doesn't listen to the radio at home or in the car, so I said, "Where did you hear that?"  It seems their PE teacher fancies himself a sometimes DJ and was playing it during gym.  It is a little strange to hear it coming out of your ten year old boy.

Mr. Wild had a good comment about 9/11.  "It was men that were the terrorists, not a religion."  They were rehashing Obama's comments on the radio and a person argued that if it had been Christian extremists we would not be that up in arms about them building a church near the towers' site.

If you were to get a tattoo, where would you put it?  I'm taking a survey.  Or maybe you already have one in a favorite spot?

I keep wanting to get up early and go to the gym.  Doesn't help that I am staying wide awake at night.

I need to find a book title for book club and I'm fresh out of ideas.  I should probably go to the library and just browse the shelves.  I had checked out the next book for September for our group, THE HELP, but it came due, I hadn't started reading it and I couldn't renew it.  Appears to be a hot read.  So I hope it is good.  We just finished DROWNING RUTH, but I totally spaced the meeting night, which was okay, because I hadn't read the whole book yet.  It was a fascinating story, but I had to read the end early on and I think it ruined the suspense for the rest of the book.  Also, in the 1910s and 20s, I don't think one could take a car from Milwaukee to Chicago there and back in one night.  There were no interstates, no street lights in the rural areas, and probably rutted roads in the countryside.  That was a bit unbelievable in the book.  I hate traveling 40 minutes to get to a restaurant, so to believe the characters tooled all around south eastern Wisconsin was just not working for me historically.

Maybe I'm tired now.  Thanks.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Nineteenth Amendment


Ninety years ago, today, the gentlemen of our country finally ratified the amendment that gave us the right to vote.  My grandmother, when she was born, at first appeared she would not have a vote, but by the time she was two years old, her fortunes had changed.

Thank you, Google, for making sure we didn't forget this momentous occasion.

From the Washington Post:

"Ninety years ago today, women got the right to vote. Here's the text of the 19th amendment, which was ratified on August 18, 1920, by the Tennessee General Assembly: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex." Tennessee was the thirty-sixth state to ratify, giving the amendment the requisite approval of three-fourths of the states; the amendment passed because 24 year-old legislator Harry Burn changed his vote, at the insistence of his elderly mother."

Whew, thank goodness Harry listened to his mother.

Maybe you want to see where your state ended up in the order of ratification*:
  1. Illinois (June 10, 1919, reaffirmed on June 17, 1919)
  2. Michigan (June 10, 1919)
  3. Wisconsin (June 10, 1919)
  4. Kansas (June 16, 1919)
  5. New York (June 16, 1919)
  6. Ohio (June 16, 1919)
  7. Pennsylvania (June 24, 1919)
  8. Massachusetts (June 25, 1919)
  9. Texas (June 28, 1919)
  10. Iowa (July 2, 1919)
  11. Missouri (July 3, 1919)
  12. Arkansas (July 28, 1919)
  13. Montana (August 2, 1919)
  14. Nebraska (August 2, 1919)
  15. Minnesota (September 8, 1919)
  16. New Hampshire (September 10, 1919)
  17. Utah (October 2, 1919)
  18. California (November 1, 1919)
  19. Maine (November 5, 1919)
  20. North Dakota (December 1, 1919)
  21. South Dakota (December 4, 1919)
  22. Colorado (December 15, 1919)
  23. Kentucky (January 6, 1920)
  24. Rhode Island (January 6, 1920)
  25. Oregon (January 13, 1920)
  26. Indiana (January 16, 1920)
  27. Wyoming (January 27, 1920)
  28. Nevada (February 7, 1920)
  29. New Jersey (February 9, 1920)
  30. Idaho (February 11, 1920)
  31. Arizona (February 12, 1920)
  32. New Mexico (February 21, 1920)
  33. Oklahoma (February 28, 1920)
  34. West Virginia (March 10, 1920, confirmed on September 21, 1920)
  35. Washington (March 22, 1920)
  36. Tennessee (August 18, 1920)
Those not listed either ratified it later, or not at all.  Yes, I said not at all.  And some did not ratify until the 1980s. Hmmmm....

*Mount, Steve (January 2007). "Ratification of Constitutional Amendments". Retrieved August 18, 2010.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: You Really Want Inside This Head?


What is the fascination with "reality" shows?  Which you all realize are as far from reality as a well put together TV show.  When you partially script the actions of the people, then put them in front of the camera, expecting them to do crazy or bad things, well of course the drama ensues and gets crazy.  I was sort of watching the "Dating in the Dark" last night, the last bit where there's the "reveal."  I was sort of like "who cares?"  Which is why I was only sort of watching.  I was multitasking and it was just noise in the background for me.

I am still listening to the pop "mix" radio station to and from work. Not really very mixed when they play the same songs nearly every hour.  A few are thrown in here and there for good measure.  It does remind me that I used to like to go to clubs or dances and dance with the girlfriends.  I miss that.  There's no place or call for nearing 40somethings to go party and dance to teeny bopper music.  I would be so embarrassing.  But lovin' it.

Have you ever thought of taking a vocation vacation?  These really do exist.  You pay inordinate amounts of money to go "try out" a job you aren't doing right now.  Check out this link.  I could use one myself.  What should I be?  Oh, I know, sword maker.

Actually, I love making reproductions of historic clothing.  Can I make a living at that?  I don't know, because the amount of labor that goes into that, not to mention that fabric is no longer all that cheap (in fabric stores; clothing in big box stores are exorbitantly cheap, but we won't go into why that is), I don't know if people could or would pay me what I should be worth.

My husband, you know, the one who is a mite picky about his food (he would disagree), is absolutely begging to go to a new restaurant.  It serves...wait for it....sushi!  Well, he doesn't want the sushi part, he wants to try the hibachi grills.  Kids are set against.  Never mind that they grill the chicken, which they love.  Grilled chicken that is. Not the grill.

And the weather we're having is just perfect.  I want to be at home with the kids on bike rides to the park, the store, around town, just being outside.  But, usually I'm inside with my job.  Oh joy.

Speaking of bike rides, I am leaning more and more towards training for the Register's Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI).  My dad did one day in the early years (this was the 1970s) when I was in elementary school.  I don't remember if he liked it or not, just that he did it with my uncle.  I, personally, want to try it all the way.  Mostly because I want to dip my back wheel in the Missouri and my front wheel in the Mississippi.  Seriously, that's my whole motivation.  I am thinking about this bike for an upgrade.  A bit pricey, but I'm thinking I ought to get several years out of it if it's better than the box store kind.  Actually, I found a store that's has them on sale at $539.  Now, to convince the husband.

This year I have been thinking about 40.  It's my next birthday.  Not in the way of "OMG I'm 40, I'm getting freakin' old."  No more like, "I'm 40, I should be able to do whatever the hell I want."  And I want a party or some kind of fun time.  Something pretty splashy that my friends and family would come see or do.  I know if I want to do something, I need to plan it.  My birthday will be on a Saturday, how perfect is that?

Mr. Wild turns 40 this fall and he wants to avoid all the fanfare.  The grey hairs must be getting to him.  Recently, upon leaning in close, I noticed his salty grey along the temples.  It's hard to notice because his hair is reddish blond and if he doesn't wear a beard, you really can't tell.  I see the crow's feet around his eyes.  I love him all the more for it.  They look good on him, but I think he's very self-conscious about it.  I did like though when he announced that he wasn't going to bother keeping the hair up front long to cover his receding hair line.  I felt like shouting, "Good for you."  I think he figures he's pretty lucky.  He likes to point out all the guys our age and younger who are bald.  Not to make fun of, mind you, just that we're so surprised that we've reached that age point, I guess.

Geez, that's about enough for today, and my lunch break is over.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Thursday Goodness

Baby born on 8/9/10 at 11:12 pm.

Terri Riehle was already happy that she was going to have her baby on August 9, 2010 -- 8/9/10."I'm like 'Oh, easy! I won't get my kid's birthdays mixed up. 8/9/10. It'll be easy to remember, good to go!'" she said.But her doctor, Dr. Peggy Heis, noted another interesting possibility."And then just joking, I said, 'Wouldn't that be fun if happened at 11:12?" she said. Watch Report But 11:12 a.m. came and went without a baby."Everybody was making bets and guesses on when she was going to come out," Scott Riehle said.Just before 11 p.m., the labor started getting more intense for Terri."I looked up and it was a quarter till 11 and I said to mom, 'Do you want to wait?'" Heis said."And I'm like 'Let's just get this over with NOW!'" Riehle said.The minutes ticked by, but despite Riehle's pushing, the baby wasn't coming out quickly."And the heart rate was going down. And I said, 'You have to push now. You have to get his baby out,'" Heis said."I looked at my mother-in-law right as the baby was coming out and I tapped her and I started pointing at the clock, like 'Look, Look!'" Scott Riehle said."And baby popped out and I look at the clock and there it was, 11:12. So some things are just meant to be," Heis said."She was set on that time. She wanted to be unforgettable," Terri Riehle said.Ella Rose Riehle almost took the numbers game a bit further. She weighed almost, but not quite, six pounds and seven ounces.

Can be found here: http://www.wlwt.com/r/24592171/detail.html

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Too Much Ranting


So, I was thinking about passion for what you do.  I have passion for raising and being with my children.  I have passion for my family and enjoying my family moments.  I have passion for my husband and enjoying spending alone time with him (minds out of the gutter, I'm talking dinner and a movie).  I have a passion for spending long quality time with my girlfriends.  What would life be without them.  I realized this morning, driving to work, I have lost all passion for my chosen vocation.  Though I don't think it is the actual chosen vocation I've lost passion for.  It is the current position I am in.  This is the feeling that kids get when their passion for learning is squelched by all the teacher and school rules and regulations, when the teachers are phoning it in, even while sitting in front of the class.  I cannot believe that further up the managment chain that those people have the passion I used to have for this job.  They keep shelling out rules, regs, hoops to jump, committees to form to study yet again another thing that we never, ever take action on.  I am tired.  I am also tired of solving all the little problems, both for those I supervise and those that are supposed to be managing me, but really, I spend my time managing them.  I used to think I liked interacting with people, but I think I'm done now.  If I'm going to solve people's problems or the ones they create for me, I'd much rather do it on a small scale and do it for my children and family.

Which leads me to a beef.  I am really sick and tired of health care being tied to a job.  I can't say that I have a better solution than the myriad of the ones out there, but I don't think the current system is going to continue to work.  I wonder if my health care was affordable in the private sector and if it was that way for everyone else, if we'd be staying in these jobs we don't like, or if we'd have more creativity, small businesses and some economic growth because people aren't tied to unproductive boring jobs with health insurance.

The mosquitoes are awful around here.  I hate DEET and it seems to not be working, according to my friends and kids.  Perhaps a more natural alternative might work.  I had a friend say that Burt's Bees Natural Herbal Insect Repellent works well.  It has lemongrass in it and my herb gardener friend says anything with lemon scent should help keep the mosquitoes away.  Lemon balm, lemon juice.  I say it is worth a try and natural to boot.

Anybody out there ever think about packing up your family and doing service work in a foreign country that needs it?  I know that is super risky, but I also feel that my chosen vocation and profession really doesn't make a difference in the grand scheme of things.  I feel like I should make a better difference to the human race.  I should have become a doctor.  I like to solve problems.  Maybe medical mysteries would have been more my style.  Maybe I'd feel I was being more helpful, which might make me feel more fulfilled about my job?  Oh, heck, maybe I should have been a teacher.

That's all I got for today.  Click on the button above for better random choices.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Thursday Goodness

I know that some people disagree and we'll just have to agree to disagree.  But my sense of justice feels righted today.

I would say there is a difference between the legal union in the nation state's eyes and the union advocated by religious organizations.  Religious organizations can still refuse to recognize these unions if they so choose.  However, the nation state, in its attempt to be fair and equal to all peoples who live in this country, cannot withhold this legal standing from a minority of its citizens.  If they do, they are treating that minority unequally.  If you have a religion against it, you have a right to speak out about it, but you do not have a right to deny others equal treatment under the Constitution.

Yes, a little political for Thursday Goodness, but in my heart of hearts it is a step in the right direction towards fairness.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Open letter to Mr. Favre

Dear Mr. Brett Favre,

Not that I care very much about your career.  I didn't care when you "retired" from the Packers.  I didn't care when you moved to the Vikings.  I don't care whether you want to "retire" again.  What I care about is all the stupid hubbub it causes. Do news outlets really need to hash the "Will he, or won't he?" story again?  Could we please not clog up the airways?  I am sure there are many more newsworthy stories out there. (Ok, maybe Lindsey Lohan doesn't count either)

I do want to say, hey, you've reached 40, you're heading for 41, most great atheletes at this time would say, "I've had a good run, now it's time for something else."  Face the music, you're not getting any younger and that body of yours isn't going to last.  We all know it's hard to start something new, but you've had a good career, good money, and I hope you invested it wisely for a day like today.  Because I wish I was in your shoes, with enough money to stop what I'm doing now and try something new.

So cut bait, pack it up, and the next time you hit the news airwaves, maybe it will be for a good cause or something.  That's always worth hearing about.


A Wisconsinite who doesn't give a rat's ass what you do for your career

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Give Me a Break

Blink.  Trying to stay focused and awake.  Where is that Diet Coke?

Guess what I got to deal with this past weekend?  A husband with a bout of the flu.  The serious flu, influenza kind.  (The other kind could be just as bad, but lasts a much, much shorter time.)  The kind that knocks you down, sends your fever soaring gives you aches, pains, headaches and chills.  Finally, today, he's feeling better.

Funny thing is (or not) we all got both seasonal and the H1N1 vaccinations.

Like my new blog background?  It seems a bit froufrou, but I'm in a froufrou mood.  Love that Cutest Blog on the Block!

Work is back open and I'm madly playing catch up.  It's nice to be back to some semblance of a routine.

Instead of listening to books on CD, I've been listening to the radio station(s) on my way to work.  Now I remember why I quit listening to them.  I get so damn bored.  I flip between four--one NPR station and three mixed pop/rock/today's hits, etc.  At least I get to have that "can't get this damn song out of my head" feeling every night.  There's some fun pop songs out there, but not fun when they play the same ones every hour.  I think there's a rotation of about 20, maybe 30 songs, and they are all the same all day and all night.  Really?  I forgot what it was like to listen to those kind of stations.

Here, let's see what I can get stuck in your head.

I don't think I have any other rants or raves inside me.  Except, does anyone know what the "rockabilly" style is, in regards to clothing?  I'm not sure I quite get what that is supposed to be.

Go, be more random than me.


Monday, August 2, 2010

Monday Garden Club

What the hell do you do with swiss chard?


Flaky crust thanks to some rendered lard from Aliceson:

That was some serious swiss chard, onion, garlic and egg pie!

Too bad for everyone not willing to try it in my house.  I think it's better than spinach in pie.

Froze the leftovers for quick breakfast warm ups.