Saturday, January 31, 2009

You Go, Macrophages!

My immune system and I really do try to get along. Unfortunately, my immune system belongs to a teacher who works in a school where parents send sick children to occupy seats in the class because the perfect attendance award matters more than, say, health. I was sick in early January, and now I'm sick again. Surprise, surprise! Perfect attendance means bunk to me, though. When I'm sick, I stay home. I prefer to teach by example that way.

In any case, this round of germiness was a doozy. I definitely prefer colds to stomach bugs, so I won't complain too much, but this cold came with a burning throat. Yuck. I've been living on hot tea for two days. Luckily, this morning, the burning has subsided to embers, though it was replaced by a nose that refuses to inhale or exhale, and a good ol' sinus headache. Joy.

Still, I have my hands! As my macrophages did battle, I was able to put together a page that I actually quite love. It's a self-portrait, a "compendium" of me:It's almost as if losing my ability to smell or speak prompted my scrapabilities to compensate. Eerie.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

"Take out your pencils. Begin."

My eyes started to tear when I heard this line from Elizabeth Alexander's inaugural poem this morning. What an amazing poem...and a perfect poem:
What if the mightiest word is love, love beyond marital, filial, national. Love that casts a widening pool of light. Love with no need to preempt grievance.

In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun.

On the brink, on the brim, on the cusp -- praise song for walking forward in that light.
Her poem, Obama's brilliant speech, and Rev. Lowery's moving benediction converged, their messages of love, peace, and dignity overlapping, resounding, ringing clear and true.

Our challenges may be new, the instruments with which we meet them may be new, but those values upon which our success depends, honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism -- these things are old.

These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history.

What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility -- a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence: the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed, why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall. And why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.
Our president -- articulate, passionate, brilliant, and inspirational -- spoke these words today.

The next four years will be very difficult ones, I know, but I love that we're starting the right way -- with hope: "Take out your pencils. Begin."

Saturday, January 17, 2009

"I Shall Be Telling This With a Sigh Somewhere Ages and Ages Hence"

Today was a day of profound choices.

I love going to the movies. Sometimes, I go for the escape. Sometimes, I go for the food. Today, I proved just how bad my movie food cravings can be.

I saw Hotel for Dogs today. Willingly.

My favorite (and I use this term loosely) part was the credits -- not just because this signified the end of the film, but also because it featured cast and crew members with their pets. Very cute. It made me rethink my existing pet photos. I'm always trying to get Mazie to sit still for photos, and I think it's time that I just accept that she's not a "sit still" kind of dog. It's time for me to embrace the joy of rolling in puddles with her.

Have I mentioned that she's had FOUR baths in the past three weeks? Sheesh. Gotta love the rainy season and a dog who loves to drink, plunge, and roll (usually in that order) in mud puddles.

Anyway, as Z and I walked out of the movie and through the mall, we started talking about our move to the mainland. I started explaining how the move would be expensive, and that we would need to save money.

Then we walked past a store, saw that the Hurley tees were 30% off, and I completely forgot my train of thought.

Two for Z...
and four for me!
I'm going to just pretend that I was an amnesiac during the hours between twelve (when I made the decision to see Hotel for Dogs) and four (when I was handed the receipt for six t-shirts). When I wonder how I came to be the owner of four coolio t-shirts, I can read this post and feel a dim recollection of this day.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Woo and Hoo!

I woke up this morning, logged into Two Peas in a Bucket, and my jaw dropped when I saw this:

and this:

I really did not expect that this would happen when I sat down last night to do some therapeutic scrapping. Work has been crazy lately, but yesterday we received word that a storm front was on its way, and so the superintendent decided to close the schools. With no lessons to plan for the next day, I jumped on the chance to play with paper.

As for that storm, it's been a bit rainy today (and I really do mean a bit), and the winds have been slightly more present than usual, but the 60 mph winds predicted for last night and this morning have yet to materialize around here. The high wind warning was canceled at 10:00 a.m. I can definitely embrace the "better safe than sorry" approach that the state, schools, and many companies took when they asked people to just stay home, but what started out as a possible calamity ended up as a holiday, and it's a teeny tiny bit amusing. The beaches were closed in preparation for The Storm, but I can only imagine how many surfers are out there right now. The waves are 20-25 feet on the North Shore today. Yipes!

Just now, the drizzle stopped and the sun is shining right through the clouds -- gotta love these pineapple showers.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Just a Click Away

This is the last pic I took for my "photo a day" attempt. Then the break ended, work started again, and the camera got buried under books and ungraded papers in my bag. Maybe I'll go for a "pic a month" instead. Geesh.