Monday, May 4, 2015

Mid Spring Update

Wednesday April 29, 2015

Second week of my New Wave Watercolor class. Nadia was missing. We figure she had important business at the zoo - maybe a cuddle session with the new tiger triplets! (can't wait for them to go on view to the public).

Amy brought me a nice dark green fleece pullover that is too small for her. It barely fits me, but should be fine over a t-shirt (once we're in t-shirt weather again) as long as I only wash it on cold!

Here's what I made this week:

Amy said the trees looked "very Hallmark; well done!" Now I just need to work on my verse for the inside of the card!

Friday May 1, 2015

Today I went to Ty Ginger Asian Bistro for lunch with my coworkers after one of them forgot her lunch and invited the rest of us out. It was a gorgeous day, so we got a nice little break from the usual grind (though I later tossed out my tuna sandwich).

After work I bought a really cute moto white blazer after seeing a coworker in one. Hers was from Macy's and mine is from JC Penney, but it was the closest I could find. I was also pleased to have a $10 off coupon as the item cost more than $25. I've already worn the blazer once and am quite happy with it. I also purchased one from E-bay that is the same brand as my coworker's, but in a different size and color.

Later in the evening I went to see the movie, "Wild," with Reese Witherspoon. It's both sad and equally inspiring, especially as it's based on a true story. I really admire Cheryl Strayed's courage and stamina. I told my husband I doubt I could do anything like that as I think I'm just way too small (lightweight) to carry a backpack that weighs at least half of what I do. Cheryl got a lesson in light packing by the caretaker at Kennedy Meadows as he went through her bag one item at a time starting with her stick of deodorant. "How's that working out for you?" he asked. "I stink, I really stink," was Cheryl's response. He eventually got her pack down to a manageable amount of weight which helped her on the rest of her journey. One tip the caretaker used that I've heard Rick Steves recommend is, if you're going to carry a travel guidebook, gradually tear out the pages you don't need to save yourself a few ounces. We never do that, but we have left books behind for other travelers.

Saturday May 2, 2015
Today was the day of Carter's First Communion. Carter is my sister's youngest who will be nine next month in June. Today he, along with perhaps 100 other second graders, made his First Holy Communion, so now he can join his big sister and brother when they go up to receive the body and blood each week during mass.

I was grateful it wasn't like commencement where they announce the name of each child and present them with their certificate. Otherwise we probably would have been there for twice as long.

After the ceremony we took a few pictures in the gathering space by the banner with the names of all the kids, and then we looked at the wall of photos of the children. Carter was also patient enough for a quick pic or two with Father Bob, so that was nice.

Once pictures were done, Carter was quite happy to remove his clip-on tie. It was only then that we noticed he had incorrectly buttoned his shirt, but it was cute that he wanted to get dressed all by himself. I'm sure he'll eventually get the hang of it.

The winner for most appropriate present goes to my mom who bought him My First Communion Missal and a roll of Certs, since grandma always has a roll of Certs in her purse for fresh breath during mass (grandpa also carries a roll in his pocket). I thought that was so poignant and I never would have thought of it.

I bought him a Lego rosary, though I'm not sure how familiar he is with what a rosary is.  Either way, Carter soon got to work snapping all the legoes together, so I think he liked it. Thank you BareSockcrafts.

Here's a few photos from the day:

 Way to go Carter!!!

Monday May 4, 2015
"Tin soldiers and Nixon coming. We're finally on our own. This summer I hear the drumming. Four dead in Ohio."
-- Neil Young, "Four Dead in Ohio"

This song was playing on the radio when I got into my car this morning, which couldn't have been more appropriate. It's a song I've gotten to know well ever since I was a student at Kent State back in the early 90s. It's played every year to commemorate the anniversary.

Although I'm always aware of the anniversary (you can't hardly call yourself an alumnus and not have this drilled into you when you're a student there), I don't always observe it in any special way. The last time I was on campus for it was in 1995 when Mary Ann Vecchio, the "mystery girl" in the photo shrieking over the body of Jeffrey Miller, came forward to share her story. Apparently that was the first time she ever met John Filo, the Pulitzer Prize winning photographer who shot the iconic photo.

Last night my husband and I watched a previously recorded PBS special called, "The Day the 60s Died," which is mostly about the events leading up to the protest at Kent State, and how what happened influenced other universities around America, including Jackson State where two students were killed and over a dozen injured during a similar protest.

I thought the special was interesting and I learned a few things I didn't know before. I didn't know that President Nixon once visited the Lincoln Memorial during a sleepless night following the Kent State shootings. His speech writer, Pat Buchanan, said Nixon always thought the Lincoln Memorial was beautiful. According to one of his female aides, when people saw him there, "their eyes were big as saucers." I also didn't know that one of the National Guard cadets died on May 4th too. That fact wasn't in the special. I just read it in today's

Although I am sentimental and sympathetic, the older I get, the more I wonder how it all started and how things got so quickly out of hand. I also sometimes wonder if perhaps the students didn't misdirect their anger, though burning down the ROTC building seemed an appropriate action. I guess I need to reread James Michener's book about Kent State. His account of things is probably as reputable as anyone else's.

Allison, Sandy, Bill & Jeffrey, your legacy lives on....

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