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Posts Tagged ‘NanoPoblano 2016’

I have always been a volunteer. A volunteer for just about everything and anything. If my help is needed, I volunteer.

This year I volunteered to lead a creative writing workshop at the charter school that sponsors my grandson’s home schooling. I volunteered to do a short workshop, with about 6 meetings. They gave me a class that meets at 9 AM every Tuesday morning and has kids from 3rd grade to 5th grade. The kids show up when they want. It’s not mandatory. The abilities range from not being able to write a sentence to one girl who has written an entire book about dragons and castles and magic.

The school is not too far, about a 20 minute drive. However, it’s “over the river and through the woods,” meaning that I travel through quite a diverse terrain. And, like this morning, it is usually very foggy most of the way. Now we’ve entered our winter weather season here in Oregon and we have “winter mix” in the forecast today and “probable snow” next Tuesday.

So I don’t want to do this anymore. At what point do I tell them, I’m not doing it anymore? It’s not like they don’t have anyone. There is a teacher assigned to do it but, because I expressed an interest in teaching a workshop, she gave me her job. I’m sort of stuck. I don’t want to back down on a commitment but this is not working out for me. No one seems to even appreciate it over there, the adults, that is. I showed up one time only to find out that there were no classes because they were auditing and no one told me there would be no classes that week. When I email, I get no reply. When I call and leave voice mail, I get no reply.

Frustration doesn’t begin to cover this.

UPDATE

I got there this morning only to find that they ate canceling classes because the electricity is it in one of the buildings and the Internet is our in all buildings. So I came home, frustrated again. I’m done for the calender year because they have testing next week and the following week is a special holiday event. I guess that gives me time to decide. 

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This story, fiction at that, is a result of the one word prompt found at oneword.com.

I couldn’t believe it. What had been a well planned getaway had turned into a nightmare. First i had not been able to sleep the night before my trip then, sleep deprived as I was, I stopped for coffee and as I took my first sip, I scalded my mouth and it blistered right away. I ended up having to spit the hot coffee all over myself. Then I jumped on the freeway only to find that there was an accident and then I got a flat tire. No way! I had just had them checked a few days before but sure enough, it was flat. I had to wait  auto club to come rescue me and by then it had started to rain and the traffic was all backed up.

When the tow arrived, they couldn’t change the tire because the spare tire I had wasn’t good enough so they ended up having to tow my car into the tire shop and I had to buy a new tire. Just what I didn’t need as my funds were quite low!

Once the tire was fixed I ended back on the freeway behind that accident. I found an alternate route, courtesy of my cell phone’s GPS, only to discover five minutes late that it was not an acceptable alternate route.

By the time I got it all sorted out, I had to deal with a torrential downpour and a multitude of accidents caused primarily by the bad weather.

When it was all over, I just wanted to go back  home. Forget about that condo at the beach which I was supposed to stay at. Forget the beautiful sunsets over the Pacific Ocean that I would be missing. Forget the delicious Margaritas at Don Francisco’s where I had planned to enjoy my favorite beverage with an order of pollo en mole. I just wanted to go home.

So much for that careful planning.


Oneword.com gives you a single word as a writing prompt and then they time you to sixty minutes. What you put into it is what you get out. Give it a try!

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I was doing a lesson about Thanksgiving with Anderson. We watched some kid videos on the first Thanksgiving and about the pilgrims landing at Plymouth. We talked about what it means to be grateful or thankful for something and about what we each could list as what we are thankful for. He made a turkey out of construction paper and we listed something to be thankful for on each feather.

One thing stands out for me from this lesson that I can’t really discuss much with my six year old grandson. Not yet. But I will get there. What is it?

When the pilgrims arrived, they arrived sick. They spread their disease to the natives who had no resistance to any illnesses coming from Europe. So they died. A lot of them died. And what did Squanto do after most of his people died? He helped the pilgrims learn to hunt and plant things they could harvest for the winter. He helped them to learn how to fight the cold and snow that would come in the winter. And when the pilgrims decided to feast, the tribe came and brought them food.

And what did “we” do? We not only brought them diseases they could not fight but we also took their land and drove them to isolated and barren lands; lands that would bear no crops to sustain them; lands that were harsh. And it continues today as “we” take their sacred land and water and dignity. We take and take and take some more and forget the spirit of giving and helping that the natives showed “us” that first Thanksgiving.

Talk about a sickness.

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I’m having tea today but there is coffee too, if you’d like. I’m experimenting with what I eat and drink as my stomach has been getting very upset so I’m trying to determine if it is too much coffee that is causing the discomfort. Mint tea is what I’m having. It’s my favorite tea. It reminds me of my mom and growing up. She always gave us mint tea to solve whatever ills we had. So today it’s mint tea.

The weather has turned cold here, cold and very windy which just makes it that much colder. I have an enclosed front porch and the wind has been so bad that it keeps blowing the door open and it slams into the living room window. I figured it is only a matter of time before the window breaks so I ended up having to lock the door so the wind doesn’t blow it open. The bad thing with that is that there’s no doorbell outside of the porch so if anyone wants in, they can’t get in to ring the doorbell on the front door. The good thing is that no one ever comes here unless they are trying to sell me something or convert me to their religion. So I guess it just stays locked until the wind dies down a bit.

I’m down but trying to keep myself focused on something positive. November is a bad month for me. Not only is it the time that our weather definitely changes, it is also so much darker out with shorter days, and it’s the anniversary of two days that I don’t like to remember. First, it’s the anniversary of the day my ex packed a bag and walked out, never to return. And second, it’s the anniversary of my brother’s suicide. So not a time I want to dwell in yet the calendar takes me there anyway.

I’m still trying to keep up with the aftermath of the elections but it seems that things happen so fast that by the time I read about one thing, it’s too late to act because it has already happened and there’s something else to get caught up with. I will say that my time has been limited, as usual. And I find myself treating myself with streaming stuff that I like, things that are familiar and that make me smile or even those that make me cry the sentimental tears, which are so much better than the frustrated tears.

While the demonstrations have all but ended here in Portland, I just read that Portland’s mayor is calling for a March of Hope on Tuesday. It is supposed to be a march and rally of solidarity to show that Portland stands against hate. I’m sure Portland PD will be on full alert. Let’s see what happens. I hope one thing that happens is that it will put a lid on some of the anger people have against all protests and deomonstrations. There is so much hate popping up from every corner toward every little thing. It’s quite disheartening.

On that note, I will tell you that I am trying to focus on happy things like going to Seattle to see my son’s family, especially the baby! I’m supposed to go on Wednesday for Thanksgiving. Last year I got sick right before so I stayed home alone. I’m hoping this year won’t be a repeat. I need something good to focus on. And on a silly side, I’m looking forward to the four new episodes of Gilmore Girls which will be available on Netflix on Friday! Yay! I guess even if I end up staying home  I will have something to look forward to, just not family and turkey!

What have you been up to? Are you spending the holiday with family? How do you celebrate? What’s on your family’s Thanksgiving menu?

#WeekendCoffeeShare is a a weekly blog link up hosted by Diana at Part Time Monster Blog. Come take a look and share some news, gossip, and a beverage!

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Last week, Anderson (6) and I went to feed my daughter’s cats (she was out of town). We ran a few errands and stopped at IHOP. I’m teaching him to read and as part of that effort, I point out signs and store names and whatever print I see that might be easy enough for him to try to read or sound out the letters. So we are driving home and we were passing the hospital when this happened:

Anderson: ER. What is that, Nana? Why does it say ER.

Me: That means Emergency Room. E for Emergency and R for Room.

Anderson: What’s Emergency Room?

Me: That’s part of the hospital and people that are very sick and cannot wait to see the doctor go there. When people are in accidents, ambulances might bring them here to the Emergency Room if they are hurt.

Anderson: I never been to the Emergency Room, right Nana?

Me: Actually, you have. When you were a baby you got very sick and your mommy and I brought you here to this Emergency Room. And in the summer, we brought your mommy here, too. Remember?

Anderson: Oh, yeah. Have you ever been to the Emergency Room?

Me: Yes, a few years ago I had to come here.

Anderson: Why did you come here?

Me: Well, I had some very bad pains in my chest and your mommy brought me here to see if I might be having a heart attack.

Anderson: I had a heart attack too. I get that some time.

Me: You did? When was that? Why did you have a heart attack?

Anderson: (First he thinks about it then…) Well, I was playing and something happened and there was a very loud very bad noise or something and I my heart stopped and I thought I was going to die so I had a heart attack!

Children say the funniest things!

The #WeeklySmile is a blog link up hosted by Trent. Come check it out. Remember that humor is the anesthetic of the brain. We all need that these days. Come see!

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This one is probably very familiar to anyone over the age of 40. You might not know the background. It was written by John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival in 1969, during the Vietnam war.

It talks about those who are all gung ho for war and wave their red, white and blue and say we should give the government what it asks of, yet they aren’t following through on their own. Fogerty says he wrote it after he was drafted. He saw that everyone was being drafted and wasn’t able to fight it, even if they didn’t support the war . Yet, there were those moneyed people that were able to get out of the draft because their money spoke for them (or their daddy’s money).

Fortunate Son

Some folks are born, made to wave the flag
Ooh, they’re red, white and blue
And when the band plays, ‘Hail to the chief’
Ooh, they point the cannon at you, Lord

But it ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no senator’s son, son
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no

Some folks are born with silver spoon in hand
Lord, don’t they help themselves? Oh
But when the taxman come to the door
Lord, the house look like a rummage sale, yes

It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no millionaire’s son, no, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no

Yeah, yeah, some folks inherit star spangled eyes
Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord
And when you ask them, how much should we give
Ooh, they only answer, more, more, more, yo

It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no military son, son, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no, no

It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no, no, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate son, son
It ain’t me

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Some of our greatest songs were written in protest of movements, events, and politics. Every protest movement has its song. Sometimes we hear the songs and sing them without realizing that it/they was/were written as a protest. I bet you’ve done it.

Bob Dylan has written many of these protest songs. Here’s one:

Blowin’ In the Wind

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man ?
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand ?
Yes, how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they’re forever banned ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Yes, how many years can a mountain exist
Before it’s washed to the sea ?
Yes, how many years can some people exist
Before they’re allowed to be free ?
Yes, how many times can a man turn his head
Pretending he just doesn’t see ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Yes, how many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky ?
Yes, how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry ?
Yes, how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died ?
The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

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