Saturday, November 11, 2017


Lately, I have been

...following my daughter's travels throughout Europe.
I've never been to Europe, and I am so proud of Z, for making this semester abroad happen -- it was a longtime dream of hers. 

I am also in awe of her, for embracing a spirit of independence and adventure, and taking the initiative to explore cities, often on her own.  She has visited many landmark sites, but has also discovered many unexpected gems along the way.

At first, she was worried about making friends and finding traveling companions, but she has since become more self-reliant -- she doesn't want to miss a thing. Some of her classmates are homesick at this point, but not Z -- she's fallen in love.

...reading a few books simultaneously, including Dan Brown's Origin (I'm about halfway through) and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's We Should All Be Feminists (with the students in my Art of Argument class). In the latter is a section that is especially relevant to our current cultural conversations about masculinity, power, voice, and harassment:
   We do a great disservice to boys in how we raise them. We stifle the humanity of boys. We define masculinity in a very narrow way. Masculinity is a hard, small cage, and we put boys inside this cage.
   ...By far the worse thing we do to males -- by making them feel they have to be hard -- is that we leave them with
very fragile egos. The harder a man feels compelled to be, the weaker his ego is.
   And then we do a much greater disservice to girls, because we raise them to cater to the fragile egos of males.
   We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller.  
(Adichie 26-27)
I'm also rereading Romeo and Juliet with my freshmen, which I love partly because of Shakespeare's language, and partly because of the students' reactions to the "misadventured piteous overthrows" of R&J.  Interestingly, this year's class seems especially attentive to the way in which the men in the play talk about and treat women.

...binge-watching Stranger Things season 2 (we blew through it in two days) and Mindhunter (again, two days).  We've also been watching The Good Doctor.  I like it so far -- Freddie Highmore is amazing -- but I'm not sure how long the show can last, as it seems to be taking the same approach each week.

...worrying about an upcoming colonoscopy. I understand that it is a routine procedure and that everyone has to endure it at some point -- and that it can save lives -- but I'm wary of being put under anesthesia once again. The last time I was kind of a wreck.  At least this time I know what to expect and the procedure will be a quick one.  I am so not looking forward to drinking that gallon o' grossness beforehand, however. Yuck.

...enjoying the rain today.  We don't get nearly enough of it. The dogs have been sleeping all day, as has the husband.  It's cozy weather.  It makes me feel like...

...scrapbooking.  In the absence of a daughter, I've been directing some of my scrappy energies toward her furry sibling.
This project came about through a Get It Scrapped prompt to use design elements to reveal character. It is so Linus. 
A second project devoted to Mr. Linus features this year's Halloween costume, which he loved so much that he set aside time each day to hunt it down and chew on it.
I have also been making sure that from time to time, a layout about me finds its way into my albums. This one was prompted by a Get It Scrapped feature on recording intentions, the Studio Calico Gypsy Moon kit and its autumnal elements, as well as by a birthday that took me even further into my 40s...and into reflecting on what this time in my life means (and what I want it to mean).

Thanks for visiting!



  1. Your daughter is so lucky to visit Europe! Such a great experience for her!!Hope she's having wonderful moments ;) Your layouts :: those colors ♥ I'm so in love with your work ♥

  2. Awesome update! What an adventurous spirit she is! Good luck with the gallon of o'grossness!! Your layouts are amazing as always!