Where you can find me

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After a lot of years juggling many different things that I both wanted, and needed to do in addition to my day job, now that the high school years are over, I am taking a break.

While a few other opportunities to fill the time that was released when my volunteering & sport shuttling/school nagging ended, I am letting them pass.

It’s time for me to give myself permission to simply be. No guilt. No pressure. I cleaned up my patio & bought some chairs and a small table and I intend to sit out here doing whatever I want. Listen to podcasts, read books, read twitter, facebook, write, bird watch, nap – whatever!

Graduation Day

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He was up until 1:30am working on a final English assignment to turn in on the last possible day to submit work for grading (of course), but…..he did actually graduate high school. On a Friday the 13th (of course, again).

Love the decorated caps.

Love the decorated caps.

Eve & Renee out supporting The Kid.

Eve & Renee out supporting The Kid.

With Grandparents

With Grandparents

With big brother

With big brother

With the whole family.

With the whole family.

With mom & dad

With mom & dad

Not sure which of us is happier!

Not sure which of us is happier!

Tassles are a pain...

Tassles are a pain…

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Look guys! They screwed up and gave me one of these things!

Look guys! They screwed up and gave me one of these things!

The Remains of the Day

The Remains of the Day

More Indiana Pics

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Forgot these two pics from Elkhart since they were on another mom’s phone until she sent them to me. Top one from just before we all went out to dinner one night so it was a rare chance for us to have a picture taken together. As you can see from both photos, he smiles when someone else is taking the picture! (If you can’t tell, he’s in the red hoodie in the 2nd shot – oh, and it was COLD!)

Colorful Marriage Equality Map

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(Oh look, my post ideas for May list suggests I comment on an article in the news – I can do that!)

From Wikipedia:

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Of course, it is my humble opinion that this map will look it’s finest when it is entirely navy blue, but until then…this has been a pretty good week!

19 states with full recognition. 9 more with current stays delaying judicial rulings that have stricken down existing bans.

By the end of 2014, it is entirely possible to have more than half the states in the navy column.

That’s pretty flipping amazing when you consider where we were in 2008, when I thought I would lose one of my best friends because he was SO MAD at California and the Prop 8 results. I couldn’t blame him – that was such a disheartening time. But, I said then, and it has proven to be true, that every defeat is actually a small step forward because it generates more activism in response. Now, looks at us. Sure, it’s the usual pattern of the “liberal elite coastlines” that have filled in first. But hey – it started in Iowa! And there’s New Mexico sticking out over there in the mountain west area. Yes, I am happy my son will be going to college in a navy blue state.

You know what really makes me happy though? Knowing that he will largely live in times when this is no longer an issue. Looking back from the edge of 50 to when I was 18, I can tell you he will nearly completely forget what a struggle this has been. It’s happened while he was an unaware child (though he did know about what happened in ’08 and couldn’t fathom why folks were voting on the right of people to marry), and most likely by the time he really starts paying attention to social issues such as these, it will be done.

He will look back from age 50 and say “Wow, this was up for debate?!”

Where do you take your cell phone?

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Cell phone in bathroom

During my often adventurous travels around Indiana last week, the mom I was riding with and I stopped at a Panera for lunch. As I got up to go to the bathroom, I left my purse with my cell phone in it, at the table with my companion. The lady who charged in front of me to get into the bathroom didn’t. In fact, she was in mid conversation with the phone up to her ear as she walked, never looking up once to see that she’d cut me off as we entered the narrow hallway. With her free hand she shoved the door open with a force that would have knocked over any poor soul attempting to exit at that moment. There was someone in there at the sink washing their hands, but it was a tiny bathroom with on two stalls. Both were empty and she went into the first one.

Talking. The entire time!

Tiny bathroom. Me in the stall right next to her, hearing everything yet doing my best to tune it out. I was more appalled/self conscious about the fact the whoever she was talking to could probably hear ALL the background noise (if you know what I mean!)

She never stopped once, & never apologized for talking while in the bathroom even though it had to be obvious.

At least she did wash her hands – propping the phone on her shoulder and talking away as she did.

As someone who is irritated when co-workers bring cell phones in to meetings and continue texting conversations while there and even answer calls (stepping out as they do, but still clearly interrupting the meeting!), you can imagine the amount of raised eyebrows and side eye I was giving to this rude woman. At least the lady I was traveling with was equally appalled.

Be honest though – have you become so attached to your phone that you would continue a conversation in a public restroom? Have talked while on the toilet at home? Would you take your phone into a workplace meeting and keep responding to text messages and calls?

Where do you draw the line? Or, do you at all?

 

NIT High School Rugby Tournament, Elkhart Indiana.

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The following photos are the massive catch up for the failure to post every day in the Merry Month of May :) Silly me thinking I could blog while traveling! The Mustangs came in 4th place overall. Their best game ever was a loss – the Saturday game against eventual #3 team Danville. The score was 24-12 and it was just so much FUN to watch! They played as a team, had some spectacular runs and scores, made some gutsy tackles and goal line stands and felt better than ever about themselves even after a loss. The game was so well played on both sides, that today the club President received this email from the referee for that match:

coach:  I was your official on Saturday.  I wanted to reiterate how enjoyable that match was; your young men were top notch, classy, hard nosed and true warriors.  your club is 1st class and you all must be very proud.  it was an honor to do that match and I hope I left your men with something positive to work from.  thank you for the experience.

That’s a great compliment to all of them. Here’s the best of my crappy iphone photos from the trip – click on the photos directly to see them in full size:

Notre Dame Campus across the river from our stop in South Bend.

Notre Dame Campus across the river from our stop in South Bend.

Blooming trees at Notre Dame

Blooming trees at Notre Dame

Pretty pink trees at Notre Dame

Pretty pink trees at Notre Dame

Beautiful green walking path at Notre Dame

Beautiful green walking path at Notre Dame

The scrum half duo of Bryce and Alex after Game 1.

The scrum half duo of Bryce and Alex after Game 1.

House along the road as we approached Amish country outside of Elkhart, Indiana.

House along the road as we approached Amish country outside of Elkhart, Indiana.

Barn in Amish country.

Barn in Amish country.

Dilapidated structure in Amish country. Oddly right next to a fairly new looking, large home.

Dilapidated structure in Amish country. Oddly right next to a fairly new looking, large home.

Bryce and Alex warming up before Game 2.

Bryce and Alex warming up before Game 2.

Jerseys lined up outside the Mustang's tent for pre-game handouts.

Jerseys lined up outside the Mustang’s tent for pre-game handouts.

Pre-game conversation before Game 3 on Saturday. Alex had the starting 9 - Bryce had played the entire B side game earlier so he was the backup this time. The other player is holding ice on his mouth due to a collision from the B game.

Pre-game conversation before Game 3 on Saturday. Alex had the starting 9 – Bryce had played the entire B side game earlier so he was the backup this time. The other player is holding ice on his mouth due to a collision from the B game.

Unfortunately when you attempt to pose the boys, you get these looks on their faces....

Unfortunately when you attempt to pose the boys, you get these looks on their faces….

Team photo before the final game with stormy skies in the background. The whole weekend was COLD!

Team photo before the final game with stormy skies in the background. The whole weekend was COLD!

I am not entirely sure what Alex is doing in this picture - perhaps letting out an exhausted sigh as Bryce looks up at me holding the camera. Alex played the entire Game 3 and had a truly brilliant game. Best ever for him. He made at least 15 tackles and was counting out bumps and bruises on Sunday. Well earned!

I am not entirely sure what Alex is doing in this picture – perhaps letting out an exhausted sigh as Bryce looks up at me holding the camera. Alex played the entire Game 3 and had a truly brilliant game. Best ever for him. He made at least 15 tackles and was counting out bumps and bruises on Sunday. Well earned!

The look of happiness after a game well played.

The look of happiness after a game well played.

 

Santa Ana winds – Beauty and the Beast

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Gorgeous water colors at Torrey Pines Beach.

Gorgeous water colors at Torrey Pines Beach.

A rare 2nd time in the month of May – the winds shift from coming off the ocean in the west bringing moisture and cool air to blowing in from the desert through the mountain canyons at the east. Hot, dry and extremely gusty. It brings temps as high as 90 right at the ocean and amazingly clear, blue skies and ocean water.

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Deep, blue skies and constant gusting wind up to 40mph.

Deep, blue skies and constant gusting wind up to 40mph.

Unfortunately, there is an ugly side to this weather pattern. Humidity is down to 9%. We’ve had severe drought conditions for a year now in California. That means we have a red flag fire warning.

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Sure enough – in the middle of a lot of new construction, but obviously with plenty of brush to fuel it, a fire is burning just east of where I work and live. These views are from the helipad on the eastern edge of the NU administrative headquarters on the Torrey Pines ridge.

Zooming in on the smoke.

Zooming in on the smoke.

I’m now sitting at my desk watching a live video feed – here’s a couple of screen shots of the worst parts:

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So far, no structures have burned. However, they are now evacuating some communities in the range of the fire. The wind is blowing due west which is pretty much towards me – BUT – lots of developed areas are in between and it would take a LOT to be threatening to my house or anything else. My son’s high school is being used as an evacuation center for the neighborhoods that are being told to clear out.

Sigh….all of this the day before we are due to leave for Indiana. Guess I’d better coach oldest son on evacuation procedures with the cats! Sheesh. Hoping very much that they get this under control. I am deeply impressed watching this live feed to see how many choppers are doing air drops and to see a Cal Fire tanker plane dropping fire retardant. It’s crazy to see how quickly this thing is advancing despite all that though….if they didn’t have that air support…..