Thursday, May 29, 2008

My friend, circa 1977


We grew up in 29 Palms.

She's wearing the shorts overalls. They have embroidery all over them. The other girl is her neighbor and the guy is her big bro.

I can't stop looking at it.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Extra protein

When we were doing traffic control I got thirsty and hungry. I was prepared with a bottle of water and a carrot cake energy health bar.

I only had time for a drink and one bite so I set my energy bar on the ground. It was on the paper, not touching the actual ground, and the only place I could have placed it that wasn't on the ground was the top of a concrete encased light pole (it was waist high) and it had bird doodie on it. You can't put food on bird doodie; it might kill you.

So I got another quick break while my husband directed traffic and took a second bite. Felt a little funny. Felt like I bit my tongue except I hadn't bitten my tongue. I look down and saw some little ants and a few giant red ants walking around where my energy bar was. AAAUUUGH! I ate some ants. I couldn't see them on my bar because they blended in plus I can't see close up for diddly anymore anyways. Long time ago I told my husband not to worry because when he got old I'd be his eyes on account of I'm 18 years younger than he but his sight is better than mine now. Pretty soon my nickels are gonna be looking like pennies like Avrilon said.

At first my tongue hurt a little funny and after an hour it hurt regular and after two hours it hurt without any funny at all. At three hours I was able to go home and put ice on it which helped a lot. By bedtime it didn't hurt at all.

So don't eat ants. And for that matter, don't eat weevils either. I speak from experience.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day 2008


It's another Memorial Day; the fourth Memorial Day since the inception of this blog. So. Before you light up that BBQ, before you continue with your party, before you start cleaning up and putting everything away and prepare to return the grind tomorrow after your excellent holiday....

Stop. And remember the men and women who gave their lives for you and me to live free, for you and me to lead our lives as we see fit, for you and me to practice religion as we choose.

And say a prayer. Take someone's hand and ask them if they want to pray out loud with you. Rarely will anyone say no. I encourage you.

My grandfather, my father, my husband, my son, have all served in the military. My grandfather I never met because he died as a prisoner of war. He died on a ship called the Oryoku Maru. In Japanese, "Maru" is like "U.S.S." on the names of American ships. The Oryoku Maru was originally a passenger ship. In fact, when my grandfather and 1,619 other POWs were on the ship there were Japanese tourists on it at the same time. Raise your hand if you've heard of the Oryoku Maru.

No hands raised.

The reason why no hands are raised is because when survivors of the Oryoku Maru returned to the U.S.A. they were required by our government to sign agreements that they would never speak of the horrors they endured. Why. Because the United States chose to help rebuild Japan after the war. If word got out of the horrific treatment of the POWs then it would have sparked a firestorm of anger and resentment which would not help us to rebuild Japan. We needed to help Japan rebuild.

This is a picture of my grandad. He died in the hold of the ship where there were no windows. He suffocated in a crush of humanity when he was 39 years old. His wife and his little girl (my mom) were in San Diego at the time. He was awarded the Navy Cross - not for dying in the war but for extraordinary bravery above and beyond the call of duty. The Navy Cross is the second highest of all the medals that can be awarded for valor.

If you are so inclined, an essay my mom wrote about her daddy is at:

Dear Grandson

The main page is:

http://www.oryokumaruonline.org/

This writer believes that since Washington, Jefferson, Franklin; since WWII, Kennedy, Martin Luther King, and Reagan; America has come a long way.

But she's going the wrong way.

Happy Memorial Day, dear readers. Have a great day. Remember the fallen. Pray for our troops, for our president, for our country, and for the world.

(♥ Hi Mom. I love ya.)

~Liliana

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Hillary summed up

Here is the best article about Hillary and her campaign for the presidential nomination that I've read to date. And it's written by a woman, not only that, a woman I can't stand. Camille Paglia. But Camille describes Hillary so articulately even going back to mention when Hill was using that fake southern accent early in her campaign which irritated me so much. I guess it irritated some Southerners even more.

From the Telegraph.co.uk: Hillary Clinton's candidacy has done feminism no favours

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Holiday week-end

Today we directed traffic from 1:30 to 4:00pm. I had a good time but I was ready to go by 4:00pm. I was starting to overheat. I'll say there's some riff-raff coming in here. Most visitors entering the park are cheerful, but man, some people have a chip on their shoulder. It's sad to see young people with such tough and hardened demeanor. By young I mean in their 20s and 30s.

We're saving a ton of money since we're spending less on fuel here than in San Diego and we have no space rent to pay. Another nice thing is that our son doesn't get roughed up when he's out on his bike here. I tell you, the kids can sure be rotten. The thing is they're all wanting to be different, especially so because it's an urban area, which is the normal state of things for youngsters. Yet here's a kid, our kid, who really is different and whattya think? They called him weirdo and Mr. Retard and hit and pushed him around a few times. Even a 14 year old kid did it. I think a 14 year old who's hanging around with 5-11 year olds has other issues as well. And his hat - he had to hit some kids for grabbing his cowboy hat but ultimately it was ruined from being thrown around. Next year when the children at that San Diego campground take his hat (there are people who actually reside in the campground called 'seasonals' and it means they live in a trailer but do not travel) I'm going to speak directly with their parents. It was an expensive hat. My husband bought him a new one today.

But I'm glad our son never shied away from venturing outside. I am glad that the name calling rolled off of him without damage. I attribute his strength and individuality to home education and his resolve to discipleship. I tell our son, "Be like a rattlesnake. Never hit anyone first, always give fair warning, and if you have to hit someone make sure they won't forget it." Course, that's not straight out of the Bible, that's from me, and I think they call it socialization in the outside world. Kids must defend themselves or else. Where playground politics are concerned, it's survival that counts and rallying and expending energy to survive is like a parasitic disease that sucks the life out of a healthy host.

One of the kids even asked him point blank, "When will you look like us?" He told them, never. (He's a cowboy and wears boots, belt buckle, shirts, and hat all the time.)

As his mom, I wonder if his hardheadedness is too much. He's my rugged individualist. My mother's intuition tells me, it will be both his strength and his weakness.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

So

The p*d*ph*l*s get off scot-free. Any evidence discovered now is of no use. It was collected illegally. The kids will get to home though. For most of them, I guess, it'll be good and for some of them, it might not. It's too complex for me to undertake at this time.

We'll be directing traffic tomorrow and Saturday. Hope I don't roast out in the sun! Actually Friday will be great because we only work from 6:00pm to 8:00pm, but on Saturday we're scheduled from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. It might be a wee bit hot, sunny, and busy then.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Wednesday

It's Wednesday already? Some days went missing! Today it's reeeally windy. There's a big sandstorm out there. We slept outside the night of the full moon. Which night was that? It was two nights ago methinks. The air was crisp and clear and the moonlight danced on the surface of the lake.

We're going out to eat to our favorite inn in half an hour. They have a delicious buffet. I hope to eat a pasta dish.

Am still practicing my new dance daily so I won't forget it. I had trouble with placing a few moves at the right count of eight but I think I ironed that out. I did it correctly just now. Hope I can duplicate it.

Homeschooling is going unusually well.

I thought I should post something since I just visited myself here and saw I was quite out of date. Tsk, tsk. Where have I been. I don't know. I've been in New Mexico, the Zia state.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Almost to NM

Tomorrow we'll be there. I'm looking forward to feeling the quiet of the lake on my ears. I need to be at the lake.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Unfortunately

Now I have a zit right under my nose and another little one thinking about coming on. I can't believe it. I'm giving that stinkin' Neutrogena to my sister tomorrow. Unfortunately, I threw my old one in the trash and I cannot retrieve it. I would if I could but I can't.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Friday

Husband is washing and waxing the truck and it's hot outside. I've got a terrible zit on my chin. It might be from some new Neutrogena SPF moisturizer I bought that has helioplex in it. I break out from everything.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Busy day

And I'm up at the crack of 10:15am. I have to git a movin'. Only three days till we leave and I have to do everything I can't do in NM before then. I left the worst for last. Things I don't want to do. Sounds like I have a lot to do. Guess it's not a lot really, but it feels like it. My sis and I are taking a wire jewelry making class at 3:00pm. I hope it's good. That part I want to do.

Found new rugs for the inside steps and bath area. They feel so soft on my toes. I still need some for the living room. Husband said in his gruff voice, "Pick whatever you want," and walked off. He knows I don't like picking house stuff and he knows I'm not good at it. So I picked the rugs and then new towels, forest green, hung them up and first thing he did was complain they were not as thick as the old ones. They seemed thick, but they're not as thick as the old ones. I can't tell that sort of thing. You need a homemaker wife for that. I'm not a homemaker wife, I'm just a wife. So with my hands on my hips I told him if he didn't like them he should have been there to help me pick them out. That was the end of that discussion. I had a flash of fast thinking there which is highly unusual for me. He shopped in the rest of the store the whole time and left me to be tortured by towel selection. I hate that with a passion.

I feel just so-so about the stuff. At least it's not frayed and looking all ancient.

Our son sold his bike yesterday for $100.00. We got him a new one for his birthday. He rides that thing every single day so we thought he should have a new one. He put his old one on Craig's List all by himself and fielded calls. He didn't know it but it was edu-ma-cation. He ended up selling it to someone in the campground. Got his full price too. I'm so proud of him. Then he got himself a job polishing boots for a campground guy for two bucks. I was proud of him again. Then he got himself a job for five bucks doing bike maintenance for a campground family. I am so proud. I reminded him that it was his perseverance that got him those jobs. His first idea was dog walking and he said he never had so many doors slammed in his face so fast. Haha! Poor fella. But it was good for him. Many people told him "no," and some not very nicely, and he returned home down in the mouth more than once. But my child persevered. I regaled him with the story of Michael Jordan who was cut from the team in high school but he persevered. I told him, don't listen to all the no's. You'll get a yes if you keep trying. You have to. It's all in the numbers. (I was thinking actually, it's all in the hands of God which is the same thing as saying numbers.)

I know a pastor had a brother who was number one in encyclopedia sales. He was number one in the whole company. He won a big vacation for he and his family because he was so good. Sounds great and you'd think it was easy for him and he had a special knack for it and it just naturally happened for him, but he also got more "no's" than anybody else and the most doors closed in his face. He got the most rejections of all the employees in the company. Ninety-eight percent of people he talked to rejected his encyclopedias. But he just plowed forward with his goal in mind. It's like the gospel. Putting the gospel out there, a lot of rejection comes back. Just keep doing the work and eventually something's gonna go through. Look at Jesus. That's rejection - getting crucified. It's the Holy Spirit changes hearts not us peeps. We gotta give the Holy Spirit the chance, the opportunity and the time to do his work. It's kind of like selling encyclopedias door to door when you're a salesman, or finding people to hire you for odd jobs when you're ten years old. It's all in the perseverance.

That's what I told our son.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

BBB

We're off to Bed, Bath, and Beyond, to hopefully buy new rugs and towels. I hope we'll find some we like.

Four days till we go back to New Mexico.

Last night I downloaded Neat Image to process my people jpgs. The demo version is excellent for web photography but limits you to applying it to images up to 1000 pixels only. Need more pixels for printing so I finally bought the home version of it. I can't wait to play in Photoshop some more.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

La Jolla, CA


Quick upload of a photo from yesterday. I will have a pelican picture too, after I pick one. I think the big dude is protecting his harem and offspring. The black seal in the water kept swimming round and round the rock and hollering in seal talk but he wouldn't go up on the rocks!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day to you!

Mother's Day and my birthday are my favorite days of the year! Today my husband's making jambalaya for me. Yum! And everyone is nice to me even if I do something wrong. Hehe! The Dayspring e-card site is down though. At least, I can't access it. Don't know if other people can.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Foody thoughts

I want to eat some chocolate Donettes and milk. Really bad. But I've put on a couple pounds here. I should go to bed. But I'll be a teeny bit hungry and it's hard to fall asleep hungry. And it's the worst time of all, eating late at night.

Oh me, oh my.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

My sister


My mom gave both of us our first haircut braids for Christmas. I asked my sis to keep mine for me. She's holding my braid next to her hair to show how close the colors are. I was about five when it was cut. My sister had dark blonde hair when she was little.

That's her natural color and she's never colored it. The should be in an Amazing Facts, Amazing Women book. She takes after our mother's side. And she has a monstrous pony tail circumference. She's quite annoying to me without even trying. She told me she conditioned it one week-end with some placenta stuff which completely grossed me out. I instantly gave her some avocado and monoi oil to use and she likes them a lot.

Morning

I awoke this morning at the crack of 10:00am and a hundred thoughts ran through my head. That's unusual! I like it. So I let them all run through and counted them like sheep jumping over a picket fence. I felt very productive lying there in my bed. Heh. Usually I wake up and I have to find my thoughts.

My teacher and I danced for an hour and a half last night from 7:15pm to 8:45pm. I went to her apartment which is only five minutes from here. She's a good lil' teacher. She's only 20 and a bit flaky at first I thought because when I started the class she missed the second meeting to attend a performance. I almost changed teachers. Did she want to teach or did she want to perform? I asked myself.

We went through the song over and over. Repetition is the key and I don't feel embarrassed to go over and over and over it with her. She's a doll.

Great article about blogging at CNN - Your blog can be group therapy. I agree on all points except that to keep a blog interesting, you should avoid the mundane. I enjoy reading the mundane. I suppose it does depend upon the writer and whether I'm interested in her life (I just realized from reading the article that I don't read any blogs by men). I don't mind at all reading about what people are eating (pictures are always good too!) or thinking or what their weather is doing. Of course, I like to know what everyone is wearing. But before I click in I don't know what they're doing or thinking, and I want to know. It's a daily surprise. It doesn't have to be earth shaking, mind bending life to keep me coming back for another read. It breaks up my day.

Some of the most memorable life lessons I've collected are from women who read me and wrote to me. A lot of life is mundane. How much would you say? Ninety percent maybe? How you live it is what makes all the difference. I would not be who I am, what I am, or where I am, without the women I've read and exchanged thoughts with online. Some of it is exceedingly personal but a lot of it isn't.

Before we traveled, before we went to Alaska or had even thought of going to Nova Scotia, I read travel blogs. Before we downsized to live a smaller life, I read Simple Living blogs. Before I became a homeschooler, I read homeschooling blogs. Before I became a less worldly Christian, I read Christian blogs. Each and every and all of those blogs were about walking the walk and living the life day to day. Mundane? Sure. For the writer, just another day. But for me, the reader? They rocked my world. They changed my life. The changed me. They changed my family because they changed me.

THAT'S not mundane and that's not dull!

...My husband just brought home some California rolls to eat! I'm still in my jammies and it's a little past noontime. The weather today is partly sunny, partly cloudy, full of promise, and I'm off on my daily blog reading circuit. It might change my life or it might not. I won't know till I do some reading.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Old photo


Finally. My dad sent me a photo I asked him for. SchnauzerMom gave me the idea. She has a photo that reminded me of one in our family. Hers is here.

This is my dad, he's the littlest one, and his brother and four sisters. One sister, the eldest who's also the tallest, passed on when she was only 69. Throat cancer. We think because she lived in Idaho when some atomic nuclear testing was done and the dust settled in Idaho. There was a lawsuit and some people got some money but they were in a neighboring state. The next eldest sister next to Grandad passed on last year. Alzheimer's. My dad's dad (my grandad) is in the photo on the right. I'm his namesake. My middle name is his. This was taken before or after church. I think before because they all look pretty fresh. My grama, she never went to church. She was Protestant and Grandpa was Catholic. When they married she agreed the future children could be raised Catholic. There was some trouble about it as far as my grandfather's mother not liking my grandmother. I heard that my grandfather's mother once complained, "She (my grama) won't even let me hold my grandbaby." That statement is a good indicator that there were problems. Such a shame religion does that. Grama's father was a minister. I was close to Grama but she never mentioned God to me. If she were here I'd say "Grama, what do you think about God?" I get a bump in my throat just writing about her which surprises me. It's been over 15 years.

So Grandad always took the six children to church and they went every Sunday. Grama got the kids cleaned and shined and polished and ready to go. They all turned out Catholic except for my father, who is agnostic.

The kids all have/had fond memories of Grandad but my sister and I were the last of the grandbabies and I only remember him as a cantankerous old man. He took naps and when he got up he'd sit in his chair and enjoy his pipe - cough and hack like no tomorrow. I guess he enjoyed it!

The only thing he ever asked of my mother was that she be sure my sister and I were baptized in the Catholic church. She did it and we were, but my dad, he's not Catholic. My mom is now, but wasn't then. I do have my dad's rosary beads that Grandad gave him. I want few heirlooms that are handed down, but the beads I definitely wanted. My dad said he never once prayed on them.

I know he's got a prayer in him. He just hasn't let it out.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Visiting

We have visiting to be done today. We're just going to do literature (he's reading Charlotte's Web), science (he's learning about the atmosphere), and his research paper (however brief, it is about the life of John Deere), then leave.

I didn't mean to but I washed my hair. My scalp was itchin'! I didn't keep the bottom very dry so finally just let it go and got it all wet. Sometimes washing only the top just doesn't work. Now I have to wait for it to dry. I used the hair dryer on the top a little. I might use it a little more. It's cloudy and drizzly today. It was kinda raining this morning even.

Wednesday I'm taking a private lesson (tribal fusion) to learn a new choreography. I really want to go back to NM with one new, complete choreography. It'll be different from what anyone else there is doing. I have some new music called Tribal Derivations and it has quite a few good songs. The song I'm using is called "Intertwine."

Son just did a measure for me. It's 41.5. That means I'm back to the length it was when I had it trimmed last at the end of March. Going for fingertip length. The ends are better quality than they were when I was at this length before. That one inch trim was a good one.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Friday, May 02, 2008

No salmon run?

This is a excerpt from the San Francisco Chronicle. Salmon fishing is against the law on the west coast this year. First time in 160 years.

"It followed the recommendation last month of the Pacific Fishery Management Council after the catastrophic disappearance of California's fabled fall run of the pink fish popularly known as king salmon."

Bolding was done by me.

This isn't good at all.

And I've read that the giant squid are coming up from the deep ocean due to lack of oxygen - and areas lacking in oxygen are growing.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Cooper's Hawk


Photo taken 4/9/08.

All stretched out like that it looks like he belongs on a rotisserie. (Kidding!)

Today I received a great compliment.

I have met a lot of people (he means in a certain town) including you and (his friend's name was here though she and I are only acquainted) that live by the love and grace of a higher power, and not just on Sunday mornings.

Wow. Rock my world. I feel that it doesn't show enough and I think I am always not quite good enough. I'm going to try harder.

Killdeer



After her work my sister came over and we walked a big, giant circle around the campground. We walked for an hour. And talked. She talked about how busy she is and how she wants a day to do nothing. A day to just stay in her jammies and not have to go anywhere or do anything. She does a lot of stuff. I could never get done all the things she gets done. My hair might all fall out or something.

So I told her, every year you say the exact same thing. I told her I will simply record her complaints now and play them back next year and spare her all the jabbering. She laughed. Me too. She's always so busy and her complaints are always the same.

She said her husband admires our lifestyle. She told me I should appreciate it and not become complacent. She's a little sister, and far less deep than I, but I give her credit sometimes. I do forget to give thanks sometimes. I mean specific thanks, not general thanks.

It was...windy this morning. But this is San Diego. It was a baby wind. A light zephyr. Wind in the forecast they said, my eye. They should see wind in New Mexico. Or Oklahoma!

The bird is a Killdeer. They have the most annoying call of any bird I've heard. Well, next to crows maybe. Two of them were across the creek from us today. I was not sorry when they flew off!