Friday, December 25, 2009
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Monday, November 16, 2009
Someone mentioned terrorists, and another person mentioned homosexuality, and we were having a pretty adult conversation about the whole thing.
Then a girl who is really just the sweetest girl ever, and who even raised her hand and waited patiently to be called on, in all seriousness asked,
Friday, November 6, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
And here's Cody with his GF just in case this picture freaks you out.
(Sorry, Dan, she's just way cuter.)
Anywho, we went biking to Voodoo Doughnuts, which is Norwegian for "We are doughnut geniuses and you have to stand outside in a line if you want them." I got a mango doughnut with mango sparkly sour sprinkles on top and an oreo cookie doughnut with peanut butter drizzled over the whole thing. My friends only hassled me a little for buying two doughnuts (because look at these guys-- you know they only ordered one each) when I really wanted to buy 10. I hope I didn't confuse my sudden urge to bike with doughnut satisfaction. Sigh.
Here's Serious Cody, for the road.
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Please come to my cooking blog and join my almost no sugar challenge.
What's your incentive?
I'll get back to you on that one.
How about, if you live around here, I'll make you something extra duper special on my birthday. How's that sound?
If you live far away you'll have to make something extra special for yourself on my birthday.
Not such a bad deal.
Plus, you can whine all about how hard it is to do this, and everyone will feel sorry for you. So it's like a win-win situation. And we can complain about it together while keeping our eyes on each other. Not in a weird sultry way, but a "if you mess up I can mess up too" kind of way. And then we can blame each other for slipping up and accidentally putting oreos in our mouths when really we meant to eat granny smith apples. Mmmmm. Apples dipped in milk. That's what we meant to do anyway.
Otherwise I'll just shame you into it, so you might as well get on now, before I tell everybody that big secret you told me that one time.
HA. You totally know what I'm talking about, don't you.
There's time to eat sugar later. Even Nutella can wait until Christmas, Sydney.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Universe: They leave their carcasses in the middle of the bathroom too, but you walk on those and move them around the rest of the house corners.
Question: Why does peanut butter have to taste so good with chocolate?
Universe: And bananas. You forgot about bananas.
Question: Why does my daughter eat random nastiness off the floor or in the windowsill but refuses to touch my vegan mac and cheese?
Universe: I don't think you really are ready to hear that answer.
Question: Why do parents expect teachers to do the same amount of work for a lot less money?
Universe: Sucks for you.
Question: Why do I even look at Reader's Digest?
Universe: Reader's Digest is anti-time. It sucks the life out of anything it touches.
Question: Why do I even bother scrubbing the floor?
Universe: Because 15 minutes of clean floor feels sooooooooo good.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
If I watch one TV episode of a series that looks interesting, I will go through a series of stages before committing myself to that series. I always hear about these shows from someone else, because I don't trust myself to find a good show with all the crap that's out there.
If I decide that I liked the episode, I will actually have to start watching the entire series. Not just the season that is currently on TV, but every season before that one. I will have to watch the deleted scenes. The gag reel. The "next season" promos. The actor interviews. (I skip the commentary. I'm not that dedicated.) However, if the show has a formula where you can walk in and out like a revolving door, then I can just watch an episode here and there like a fair weather friend who eats the sausages off your pizza slice.
Now, since I haven't had a TV for 11 years, and TV on the internet and on DVD is a new phenomenon, this can lead up to a lot of commitment.
You're thinking, yeah, she does have a commitment problem. An addiction problem.
But PEOPLE. I haven't even told you the problem yet.
The real problem is that I actually feel guilty if I decide not to watch that series.
Like, if the series isn't that good, or it's crass, or sort of weak on interesting characters, or has cheesy music, I tell myself that 7 seasons is way too much to commit to.
But then I worry about it. I think, well, maybe I didn't really give it a chance. Or, so-'n-so liked it. Or, if it has 7 seasons it must be good. Won't the series feel bad if I just walk away now? What if it thinks there's something wrong with it? Is it fair of me to give an opinion after only one episode?
I also go through this if I have been previously committed to a show but we start having a series of episodes where they killed the main love interest or introduced an annoying new lead character, and I start becoming overwhelmed by the reality of watching 3 more seasons to catch up to the current, so I wonder if I was only having a fling instead of a committed polygamist relationship. This makes me feel dirty, and cheap.
Then I drop the show, but when it comes up in conversations where someone is telling me that they love this show, I immediately feel guilty. I clumsily mumble, "Ohhhh, yeah. I watched that once. It was pretty good." And soon I'm wondering if I should revisit my earlier rash decision.
So my new tactic is "don't start." I've had several shows on my list of "to check out" because of recommendations I've had lately. I'm sorry if you told me to watch something within the last month because I really really really am not going to watch it. Because I am really really really not wanting to start another show. Even though I really really really want to see that vampire show that Sarah recommended. And that "Psych" show that my students told me about (okay, so maybe I watched an episode of that). And I want to watch all the food network episodes they have on Hulu. It is totally eating me up.
But even more so, I just don't have time to watch a new show and that's because I have to watch the 3rd season of Friday Night Lights (recommended by Amy Palmer). Good thing there are only three. So far.
It must be good. Jake's been watching it with me. I give it my whole-hearted recommendation if you're looking for something to fill that slot you have open.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
There is weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, and then there is an attempt at a break out.
After finding her in Minami's gum stash (I would throw it away if I could) for the 2nd time today (and the 30th time in 3 days), I said, AGAIN, that she was in time out (a punishment she's familiar with for this particular action).
20 seconds after I put her in time out, she is getting out. Even though I am standing right there to put her back in.
After 5 times of putting her back in, I go to the kitchen to get a drink of water, and I hear the door swinging open. I run through the back door and intercept her on her way back to Pam's.
She screams, cries, tries to throw herself on the floor. I put her back in time out. I have to put her back in time out about 10 more times. Finally I just HOLD her there.
Once she is in time out for a total of 2 minutes in one sitting (well, holding), we talk about why she's in time out. Then I tell her that she is not allowed to go to Pam's house any more today, because I can't trust her to stay out of the gum stash.
She cries. She attempts break out about 2 minutes later. She gets all the way to Pam's back door before I can nab her. Back in time out we go. 10 more times.
She has definitely developed this pattern lately of going straight to the worst level. When I announce, "Dinnertime!" she flops on the floor and cries with all her might that "I! Don't! Want! Dinnnnner!"
I cannot keep her in my house these days. She refuses to stay at home. She wants to play with whatever and whoever is not at our house. No matter what game or book I try to bribe her with she is out the door and gone, all the time. If I want her to come back I have to drag her home and stand by the door at all times. She has an aversion to our walls. Of course, with everyone at Pam's house, she is perfectly pleasant. She even answers the phone and chats.
I'm really really ready for the even more terrible threes to be over. I just hope that 4 is not even worse. Or 13 for that matter.
What Would You Do?
Saturday, September 5, 2009
I am a messy person.
I've been dancing, swinging, skipping, tossing around this fact for years now. Anyone who knows me knows that this is an obvious fact, but I've been in denial.
This is what I tell myself:
I am busy, I don't have time to clean. I like to cook, so my kitchen is naturally messy. I live in Hawaii, so there are going to be piles of ants in every corner. I just cleaned the floor yesterday and it is already dirty, which means it is impossible to keep clean. I am planning on cleaning the fridge tomorrow. I am making a plan to clean one room each day this week. Amaya will just mess everything up anyway.
Now, this is not even close to the same thing as not knowing how to clean. In fact, when I do clean, I clean pretty thoroughly, which means I lift up the toaster to sweep the crumbs out from underneath it. I do care a lot about the floor of the house, so I will scrub it regularly. This keeps it clean for exactly 4 hours at a time.
But I will completely ignore other things, and make more work for myself later. I put papers into piles that I need to sort later, I put books on top of the stack in the shelf, and I empty my pockets on top of my dresser every evening. I usually get to this point where I see a pile, and I just throw something else into it, because obviously I have to clean up that pile and I might as well do it all at once.
So in this realization, I've also come to see some other truths that hold our universe together.
1. I don't have time to clean, but people who are clean and don't have time to clean clean anyway.
2. Paperclips, rubberbands, and other things that hold other things together attract others of their kind and make a mess in miscellaneous areas. And if you throw them away, you will grow new ones soon enough.
3. If you spend an hour cleaning the bathroom and get rid of all of the dead ant piles in the corners, they will rebel and stray their crumpled bodies all over the floor in protest of you interrupting their sacred burial ground.
4. Having a place where you keep things that you don't know where they go to also means that you will never find where these things go to (and take up valuable space in a drawer). However, if you throw these things away, you will immediately find whatever they go to, and you will absolutely need them and hate yourself for throwing them away.
5. Just because you are too short to see the top of the fridge does not mean that the top of the fridge is clean. In fact, you have been putting cereal boxes up there for months assuming it was a clean and bug free place to keep things, but once you stand on a chair and look, you will see several cockroaches running to another place you can't see the top of.
6. Cleaning your house just makes you aware of all the things you still need to clean. Even if you tell yourself you will clean the inside of the fridge tomorrow, in the meantime, ants and cockroaches will be busy making little piles inside the cupboard you cleaned today. And don't even get me started on the windows. There is no being DONE with cleaning.
7. The only time your house will be clean is when you move out, take all of your stuff to your new place, and scrub everything top to bottom.
So this morning Jake and I ignored Amaya entirely and cleaned the kitchen, living room, and bathroom. I organized every pile and put things away and scrubbed the surfaces. We ignored the windows and the inside of the fridge and only cleaned some of the cupboards.
Telling yourself that you are going to change and become a clean person is much like breaking an addiction. Good intentions, written goals, positive self-talk all come down to you, and something that needs to be cleaned up.
Does it really matter if I put this paperclip on top of the bookcase?
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Amaya started going to Rainbow school just last month. The weirdest part of it is that I am not realizing how old she is getting, I am realizing how old I am getting. And it's all happening so fast.
Jake and I are sitting at the kitchen table and talking about the fact that the teachers want to move Amaya up to the 3-4 class (she’s in the 2-3 class) and the whole time I’m thinking, Is this what parents do? Discuss how your kid is coping in her environment and how she might be affected for the rest of her life? Since she doesn't have to take naps in the 3-4 class will she grow up right?
Even as I'm hearing myself saying, "What did the teacher say?" I'm wondering how it got to be that I've accepted that the rest of the world is going to have a say in how Amaya grows up. I've let it in. And I have to work with it.
Yesterday Amaya was holding a spray can of some kind and I said, “Don’t play with that; it has chemicals in it.”
She said, “Yeah. It has POOP in it!”
I said, “What?! It doesn’t have poop in it.”
She replied, “Yes, poop has chemicals. It has poop in it.”
She is SO ready.
I think it's me who has to try to be a grownup.
Friday, August 28, 2009
Yes, I could have told you that. After doing P90x for six straight weeks this summer and seeing zero actual weight loss, I told my Ted's breakfast sandwich that he wasn't doing me any good. And why not? He's yummy, and protein filled, and packed with fat. After my discussion with him, I looked at my glazed doughnut right in the eyes and told her that if she did not get herself worked off by the end of my hour long squats session, I would be annoyed, and may not come see her again for at least two weeks.
The only one who listened to me at all during my 6 weeks of P90x was my shoulders, who decided to pop up out of nowhere and slink back into nowhere under my shirt sleeves. What good is having shapely shoulders if they don't connect to shapely biceps and forearms?
I'll tell you. No good.
Then we hit my 2 week vacation, on which the second half my P90x dvd's were temporarily stolen. Then I got back and started school.
I tell you. Working is an exercise killer. Because work is work and exercise is work and if you're going to drop one work, you're certainly going to be dropping the work that doesn't work at all.
So now that everyone and their mother and Time magazine is telling me to stop visiting Ted's for breakfast, and stop looking at Tastespotting on fast sunday, and stop going to birthday parties, I want to throw out a few other myths regarding dieting.
Eating a big breakfast does NOT make you less hungry at lunch. If your name is Mariko and you are eating a big breakfast, you are halfway starved by lunch. And if you eat a big lunch, it does NOT make you less hungry at dinner. Oatmeal has got to be the least sticking breakfast there is. My stomach can metabolize oatmeal in 30 minutes.
Stopping when you are "satisfied" does not leave you full 15 minutes later. My brain is quite hungry 15 minutes later.
Eating a piece of fruit or drinking a glass of water when you are hungry does NOT stave off the beast. Total LIE! Not only do you not care about eating a piece of fruit when you are hungry, but if you do force yourself to eat fruit instead of a Nutella sandwich, you are so about to eat a Nutella sandwich 5 minutes later. So not only have you consumed a Nutella sandwich, you have eaten the sugar from a piece of fruit. Actually, you have already eaten the sugar of 5 pieces of fruit, because getting full off of fruit is the biggest lie there is, but you were trying to believe in it anyway. And yes. You are still going to be hungry for dinner. In fact, you are probably going to be hungry after dinner too, because you tried to make part of your dinner a salad.
Exercise combined with eating less is supposed to work. Problem is, there is no way you are exercising when you feel like crap from eating less.
And the last myth. The killer. The one where people tell you you look fine and you don't need to diet. I know. People with eating disorders never believe it either. But when you weigh 20 lbs more than you did before you had a baby and don't fit your clothes without sporting a muffin top and people ask you all the time if you are pregnant...
The only thing about dieting that is true is that you're sick of talking about it, thinking about it, and doing it, and so is everyone else listening to you. But you can't stop anyway, even though you aren't looking for sympathy. When you're hungry, the only thing you're thinking about is food. And not eating it. And pretty soon you're Cathy Guisewite. You even look like her.
So I guess I'm about to eat another piece of canteloupe.
Friday, August 14, 2009
People who live here are always talking about the situations that would cause them to leave. When you leave the universe door open to "if..." it's bound to happen. While they leave their hearts in Hawaii, they take their bodies to Utah. It's pretty hard to have a heart to heart with a bodiless heart.
Then you're tortured by a promise that the person will never love their new home as much as they love Hawaii, and they will try to come back as soon as they can. They even say things like, "I wish I was in Hawaii", but then they continue to revel in the benefits of being on the mainland that they swear they will never care about as much as living in Hawaii. If they come to visit, they casually mention they have a new house, gallons of milk for $2, and schools with toilet paper in the bathrooms.
Pretty soon their hearts are packing their bags. Worse, when I make fun of their newfoundland, they get annoyed and defend it.
I'm tired of being left behind. When people leave, they always act like it's about new progression and new beginnings and new opportunity. I wanna know. Just what the heck was wrong with the old one? Not only that, if those people come back to see what you're doing, and you happen to be living the old opportunity (however well you happen to be living it), they seem to feel like everything is right where they left it. In a bad way. Sure, I don't really want to make new friends because I'm waiting for the old ones to come back, and sure, my circle dwindles. But wouldn't it seem worse for you if I had moved on since I haven't moved?
Is it progression if I move to a place with 4 bedrooms and a dishwasher, cut off ties with the old friends, and start scrapbooking with my new crew?
I want to make a strong argument for Hawaii that I believe is air tight.
1. Owning your own house is totally over rated. What you are earning in equity, I am earning in peace of mind that I will never have to take care of my own plumbing problems. I think it's much better to concentrate on goals that require little upkeep but also signify "arriving" in terms of adulthood, like "owning a set of plates that all match and are not remnants from previous renters at the last three apartments you have lived".
2. So what if strawberries cost $1 a pound--You have to buy nice furniture to serve them on for your guests that you have to invite over with invitations made with little arranged pieces of paper cut out with a Cricut. Why not live here, where you eat mangoes dripping from your elbows while sitting in the yard with the people who happened to come over and ended up staying for dinner?
3. You will get at least 3 extra days off of school a year due to flooding, which is way better than a snow day (except in the event that it actually floods--and if that happens, you will probably get at least 5 days off). Plus some days are so nice that no one will begrudge you a surf vacation day occasionally.
4. I think I have to say it again in case you missed it: MANGO. So many that there are two huge tupperware of cut mango in your fridge and 10 more fruits on the counter ripening, not to mention the trees sagging with ripeness in the yard. I'll let that sit in your mind while I touch briefly on the words 'Mountain Apples'. That should be sufficient.
5. Good service is a myth. People who are polite and helpful in service related jobs are really just spitting in your food before it leaves the kitchen, or grumbling about their customers on their own personal blogs. It's much better to live in a place where everyone knows where they stand: that customers are really just a hassle, money made from this job is a necessary evil for idyllic island life, any pleasantries you would exchange are totally disingenuous anyway, and rather than bug the secretary you should probably just be more self-sufficient. I truly think it makes everyone happier at the end of the day to realize this and get on with the real relationships you have rather than worry about the fake ones that require pre-made conversational tools.
Now, I don't want everyone to come rent up all the remaining vacancies on my side of the island, but if anyone who has already left or is planning on leaving wants to stick around, I think we'd be happy to forgive and forget and make some room--
Maybe I could even spare a few mangoes.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Our phone conversations included him telling me detail by detail what was in my luggage, including the unmentionables, several reassurances that he was not crazy, and that he was looking for a new wife.
We were worried to go get it, and wanted the police to pick it up for us, which they won't do (in case you wanted to know). They wanted him to bring it to the station. When I mentioned that to him, he said he was old, didn't have a car, and was trying to do us a favor, but...
When I said we lived pretty far away and it would be hard to come get it, he said he could bring it to us.
Christian went and got it for me, paid the guy a reward, and reported him as harmless.
Yes, we got almost all of it back. Things that were gone:
brand new sandals, clothes with tags still attached, presents for various newborns and in utero children, random toiletries, and....
Don't ask me why I had sardines, but I had 2 cans of them from Zingerman's, and was dismayed to find them gone. The psychos liked the sardines I guess. But not the Nutella. I tell you, WEIRD.
I was even amazed to find that all of my school papers, the ones that had been in the zipper of the suitcase, were all stuffed into the duffel bag. I had specifically prayed to find these. And my brush. I mean, who rummages through a bunch of stuff and then actually puts stuff back in? Why not just toss it all into the trash?
Why not put the suitcase and duffel bag INTO the dumpster, instead of right beside it?
And if you find it, why do you grab them both, even if the duffel bag is totally unlabeled?
The main thing you think, when a miracle happens to you, is that Someone is paying attention.
Why the sardines?
Friday, July 24, 2009
Maybe it's under the car.
Okay. Think. Where did you see it last?
Alrighty, so if it's not in the trunk of the car, then where could it be now? I'm sure I must have put them somewhere around here.
I did something wrong here. I forgot some crucial step in my decision making today. Now, I need to rewind and happen to come back to the car at about 12:30. Then I would have seen that they were taking my stuff, and I would have run after them and scared them away, and my stuff would be safe.
ARRRRRRRGH. How can I catch them in the act?
Look around. Maybe they're still here. Is that woman putting a suitcase in her car?
No. That's a baby.
Okay, think. What was in the suitcase? Clothes, gifts, computer... AAAAHHH! My computer!
Weird. They didn't take my backpack with my computer. PHEW. That is crazy lucky. I mean, WOW. I am so awesome to have put all my expensive stuff in my backpack.
Why didn't I put my work papers in my backpack! WHY didn't I put my P90X DVD's in my backpack? Why didn't I put my awesome new Japanese brush in my backpack that I can never find again?
WHY didn't I put my suitcase in my backpack?!
Calm down. Really. There must be some other stuff that I don't actually care about.
Toothpaste. I don't really care about my toothpaste.
Well... I did just buy it. And it was Tom's toothpaste. I never buy that in Hawaii. Dang.
I don't really care about my toothpaste, but I kind of do.
I also had some socks.
Is this a message from God that I shouldn't be here? Does he send messages through luggage thieves? Should I be interpreting this?
I totally should not have paid for my luggage to be brought here. It cost $15 per bag! I should have just thrown them in the trash before I got to the airport. That would have been so much smarter.
I even paid for the luggage cart! TWICE!
If those luggage thieves were here, I would tell them what an inconvenience they've caused me. They would feel pretty dumb if I could just talk to them.
Is that my luggage over there?
That's a small shrub.
I really wish I wasn't so materialistic. Then this wouldn't even matter.
And I wish I was rich, so this wouldn't matter.
And I wish I had put my suitcase in my backpack.
Friday, July 10, 2009
She'd still be in love with Austin
I would find pieces of carpet in her nose
A parasite would be living in her stomach from licking the window screen daily
Every day she would ask me if it was her birthday
The last hour of morning sleep would be squirming around in my bed
New vocabulary would pop up in every day language, like "scrumptious"
L's would sound like y's, as in "I yick my yips"
We'd have popsicle tubes in our freezer
Singing "Hakuna Matata" would be one repeated line
Her bangs would always be in her eyes
We'd swing and sing in the hammock every afternoon
Everyone would want to entertain her
She'd take a nap from 4 till 5 pm
Tea time would be a permanent item on the agenda
Everything past would be last night and everything future would be tonight
Going pee in the toilet would be the last priority if anything interesting was happening
The library would be the most exciting place in the world
A marshmallow filled with mango juice would be enough reward for anything
She'd be giving me hugs, kisses, and I love yous hourly
Happy 3rd Birthday Amaya. I wish you could be two forever.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
1) When you see that the dishes are piling up in the sink, reorganize the counter so that more go in the sink, so you can put more on the counter when you need to. Everyone knows you don't have to do dishes until there is no more room to put dishes.
You can also soak the dishes that are super crusty, because everyone knows you can't do dishes that are super crusty.
2) If the floor is badly in need of a good "knees on the floor" scrub, buy a swiffer. If that isn't good enough, then use it. Don't bother moving the furniture. You'll get around to a good scrub eventually. You have time in your schedule next April. I recently vacuumed the kitchen. It's not such a bad substitute, really.
3) Let's say your car safety inspection is expiring. You definitely get at least a day grace period when it does expire. Then call your local safety inspector and ask him if he can do it. When he says, "No, call on Wednesday," wait until Thursday, so that he can tell you to call again on Monday, and so forth. This way, you are involving others in your putting off-ness, and you can even complain about it. Then others see that you are clearly trying to do something about it, but the forces of nature are colliding against you.
4) If you have a for sure something's wrong with you disease, and you feel awful, look up your symptoms on the internet. Then tell everyone about it. After listening to several friends and a spouse tell you to make a doctor's appointment, consider which kind of doctor you should go to. During this time have no real plans to make an appointment because everyone knows you should not ever confirm a "for sure something's wrong with you disease." Everyone knows this leads to "for sure something's wrong with you" treatment, which involves needles or small scopes built for small places. Instead you should wait until you are either so uncomfortable that your spouse calls a doctor for you, or your symptoms change slightly so that you can research a different "something is probably wrong with you" disease and start the process again.
5) Your neck has been telling you recently that you're getting old. The lines are standing out stronger than your chin line. The best thing for you to do here is to buy some products that work really hard, pumping their arms up and down all night and bathe your skin in plumping moisture while you sleep. Everyone knows that the inevitable here is surgery, but you haven't saved up enough money yet, since you're spending it all on "make your skin look like it will tomorrow" night cream.
Surely you've noticed now that delaying is hard work, which is probably why I never have any time to do anything else.
Friday, July 3, 2009
I think I'm pretty learning spoiled.
Anything to do with moving my body, you can pretty much count out. I am hopeless at seeing someone do something (like a dance move, or a flip) and then doing it myself.
Even on my P90x video, there's a sequence where you throw and catch a pitch, and I just move around to get the exercise, but I can never figure out which foot to lift and what arm to put down, and I feel like I'm doing some sort of tribal dance. And yes, when I dance, it looks like an accident.
Things I want to learn, but am frustrated by easily:
1. Sew. It's too frustrating to even talk about.
2. How to fix actual problems with my computer without calling my dad. I am good at defragmenting and changing the startup programs, and beyond that, I can do nothing. I did open up my computer twice, and I think I broke my internet wireless card by touching it too much.
3. Play the guitar. I should be able to do this, but I get really annoyed really fast because I cannot remember where to put my fingers and it hurts.
4. Speak Japanese. It's tragic how I speak a minimal amount of French and next to no Japanese. The worst part is that Jake is now listening to the Japanese podcast. I am foreign language retarded, and I blame that on my English skill.
5. Gardening. Now, you're going to say, just go out there and do it. But for some reason, I am afraid of doing it. I think I am going to kill things. I can rake leaves, but I worry about touching actual alive plants.
There are a number of other things I want to learn how to do: fish, basic auto mechanics, carpentry and house building, do an ollie, dance like Michael Jackson... I'll probably need to spend too much time to learn those things.
I also want to write a book, get my PhD, have more kids, read every book on my bookshelf, travel, and everything else I already do.
I wish I didn't have to sleep so much. And that reading a book about doing something was as good as doing it.
Of course, if that worked, first thing I'd do before any of that list, I'd buy a bunch of diet books.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Me: "Amaya, WHAT did I say?" I grab her and make her look at me in the eyes.
Amaya: "Um, you said.... Mommy, what did you say?"
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
I mean, it already has, but it is going to change how my life is going to change from now on. And yes, I have used the techniques in this book many times already. I'm not saying I've mastered it, but I've done much better at discussing emotionally charged issues since I've started. I would have to say this is the first book of this kind (self-help?) that I've read, ever. My dad sent me the book and I know he uses it because he is really good at discussing with people about sticky subjects. The main point though, that I got from the book was, "You can change how YOU act in a crucial conversation. Don't walk into a situation thinking you are going to get exactly what you want."
In case you don't have time to read this book, I have cleverly devised a summary scenario containing the main ideas.
You are supposed to use these techniques when you communicate with someone about a crucial subject. These can be used in any environment, and even with seemingly inane individuals. The whole point of this is to work out solutions and to avoid "silence" or "violence" types of responses, which is what usually happens in the cases of crucial conversations.
1. Communicate your facts and Tell your story. Start with the facts of the situation (your evidence to show what you've observed) and explain what conclusion this has led you to. This is to clear up when you have come to a conclusion about someone's actions so that they don't feel like you've made a villain out of them. It also helps you to realize that there may be many reasons that people act the way they do, and you can't just expect the worst.
Example: Jane: Every time I pass by your cubicle, you look at me up, down, and sideways, and you leave me out of the conversations when you go out with your snotty boyfriend, so I'm beginning to think that you don't trust me. Is there something I'm not seeing here?
2. When the response is in silence or violence, build safety to bring out more information.
Example: George: "Oh, so you think I never do anything around here. Whatever. Just send me the bill."
Jane: "It seems like that isn't okay with you. I see that your face is twisted and your left eye is twitching. Could it be that you are being sarcastic because you think I am insulting you? I am not trying to make you feel like your mother, I just want to make sure that we get to have a vacation that everyone is happy with."
3. After all the meaning is flowing into the shared pool, make a decision, make people responsible for their tasks, and follow up.
Jane: "So now that we know that you would prefer to have a dog because you are trying to reclaim your lost childhood pet, we will have a working prototype ready to go through debugging by May 1st, and Stan is in charge of notifying me of any issues."
Stan: "Wait, I wasn't here when we voted!"
Jane: "This decision was made by consult only, and we don't have time for full consensus. We only use voting when those involved don't mind either way things turn out."
George: "Thanks for listening to me. I really feel better now and that we can trust each other to communicate all the issues we're facing."
Jane: "Great. This may be a good time to discuss those pants you always wear when we visit my mother."
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Jake: "What color is this?"
Jake: "What color is it?"
Jake: "No, what color is this turtle?"
Amaya: "Ummmmm, BLUE!"
Jake: "No... It's Guhhhhhh...."
Jake: "No, Grrrrr..."
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
"Teacher should be
Kona jumped in on this
I said, "You've been here 20 years, huh?"
[cackle, cackle. I love that part.]
"Seriously, Miss. Why don't they just
Gotta say, Kona. That is ingenious.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
Sunday, April 12, 2009
- Being a parent in a dirty public bathroom.
- Understanding why people go to chain semi-fast food restaurants, like "Chili's"
- Not eating oreos after I've eaten dinner, second dinner, a snack, and some m&m's.
- playing "Hello, hello" at junior and senior primary for the billionth sunday in a row
- stopping yourself from watching the next episode of "24"
- watching your daughter fake vomit in her mouth from eating a piece of zucchini
- following through with your P90x workout
- finding clothes for school in the dark
- getting a 9th grader's attention and keeping it
- Jake's muscles
I guess not everything that's hard is undesirable.
Friday, April 10, 2009
Jake said, "Amaya, why are you so lame sometimes?"
Amaya answered, "No, I'm not lame. Spongebob is lame."
Jake told her this tidbit about spongebob about 3 months ago, once. A little later she remembered that The Lion King was also lame.
For breakfast she said, "Get me a napkin, please." When we didn't jump up right away she said, "Anyone....? Anyone?"
After breakfast she wanted a body tart. Which is apparently the same thing as a poptart. A strawberry one.
When I was in the bathroom she was very upset about being locked into the house and heard "Uncle" Buddy talking to Pam outside. She was trying to unlock the door herself and kept calling out to them. Then she got a key out of the key bowl and said, "Uncle Buddy! I have a key! Let me show you how to use it! I need to unlock the door!"
I used to think nothing sounded funny at 6 am.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Saturday, April 4, 2009
I thought I would post this here, because I have some amazing students. And these amazing students actually helped me edit this poem.
Usually I'm really irritated with my students (every year) because they have a hard time being critical of writing. SO, I gave them something they couldn't wait to tear apart. My own poem.
I was surprised to find that they did a good job. Not because they don't write well. Because I actually made this into a way better poem because of them.
It still needs some tweaking, but I like how it's turning out.
They didn't like the word "crackling." But I couldn't find a suitable replacement. Poet's license I guess. Everything I came up with made it sound more and more like cereal.
When we argue in the car,
soon we fall into a silence
backlit by wheels spinning over concrete
air slips around our encased contention
the tunnel cuts the radio transmission
into a tune of electric chafe
Your head is facing the angle of the windshield.
You are watching the lines in the road
making their paths out of the dark.
I wonder if the direction of your face
Means you are waiting for my reply,
Being alone, together, crackles in my ears.
We’ve had this moment before
In many pieces
~ We’re standing in a wind, cliff side,
the waves cresting white over rocky pieces
~ hiking ahead of you,
clouds heavy in my rasping breath
~ our running soles scraping concrete,
a lopsided beat, at night