Friday, June 27, 2008


Thursday, the United States Supreme Court affirmed an individual's right to keep and bear arms. It was a 5 to 4 decision.

One of the dissenting justices was Justice Breyer. In his dissension, Justice Breyer ascertains, 'that individual self-defense is merely a “subsidiary interest” of the right to keep and bear arms'.

I wonder how 'subsidiary' his interest would be if it was his wife or daughter being raped and brutalized in front of him.

Just a thought.

Are you my mother?


Things you hope to never be asked by a 14 year old girl (see #5 below):

1. Do you keep your eyes open during sex?
2. How do you know when you are horny?

The Path to Hell...

is paved with good intentions. This was one of my mother's favorite cliches. I was reminded of her wise words this week.

Picture this: Me and four, yes four, 14 year old girls having 'fun' for 3 days at the lake. A girl's get-away. Paddling, kayaking, going to the beach...bon fires, smore's, life lessons. Right...can you say insanity?

Here are the top ten things I had forgotten about teenage girls (mine are in their twenties):

1. They screech and scream at anything and they do it LOUDLY
2. They are nocturnal (I am not)
3. They are not happy unless they are surrounded by drama
5. They have no 'filter' and will say or ask anything, anytime, anywhere
6. They don't clean up after themselves
7. It takes them hours to get ready to go anywhere
8. When they aren't on the phone talking to boys, they are on the computer talking to boys
9. All they eat is JUNK!
10. They make me laugh!

While it was a long and trying three days with little sleep and lots of drama, and no I will not do it again, it wasn't all bad. They had fun and I put another paving stone on the path to hell.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day

Father's Day...a day to honor our fathers. Have you honored yours? Mine has been gone for some 14 years now. It seems like only yesterday. Wow, how time flies.

He wasn't a perfect father...he wasn't the worst either. He was just the typical man trying to do the best he could with what he had. Some days he had a lot and some days he didn't have so much. But I always felt like he loved me the best he could.

So thank you Dad for giving me the best you was enough.

Cause you can't expect more from someone than the best they've got.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Generosity Beyond Compare

I love words! I love books! I love libraries! In fact, this coming school year I will be the new assistant in my school library. I can't wait to browse among the shelves and inspire my students to explore the words between the book's covers. But I don't think my passion for these things comes anywhere close that of Ms. Carol Sue Snowden, a 30 year employee of the Whitehall library .

On the surface she appeared to be a very simple woman who lived a simple life...but looks are always deceiving. And now because of her generosity, generations to come, in no less than 11 different locations, will reap the rewards of literature for a very long time.

I don't know who I admire the most...Ms. Snowden for her generosity or her family who unselfishly supported her in her decision. What a legacy! We should all leave something so wonderful behind.

Picture Time!

Just another example of the beauty on the lake.


Have you ever considered the codependent nature of things? There are objects in our lives we use every day that share a relationship that is interdependent or mutually dependent. One cannot stand alone and be effective or as effective without the other.

Consider the rod and reel? What is the reel without the rod? It is just cylinder a with nylon twine wrapped around it…useless without the rod (unless you want a paper weight). Without the two combined there will be no fish for dinner.

What about the camera and the lens? The camera without the lens is just a box with a view finder and a couple of fancy buttons incapable of capturing that special moment in time. And the lens…nothing but a chunk of glass (again a possible paper weight).

Or the pen and the ink: no ink no words on the paper. No thoughts or beautiful prose…just an empty cylinder and some messy blue or black stuff you can’t get out of your clothes.

So could you say these items are mutually needy? That in order to achieve the nature of their intended purpose they cannot stand alone…two parts that combine to create a whole? The relationship is positive…even symbiotic.

Is being codependent a bad thing? I guess it depends on what you are talking about: where objects are concerned, probably not. We can always find an alternative use for an object. Can you ever have enough paperweights?

However, codependent is a word that is often used to describe dysfunctional relationships among people who are dependent on one another to the detriment of themselves. Often there is no alternative for these people…even when you separate them you can’t use the lesser of the parts as a paperweight.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Way cool!

And you wonder why I like it here.........


The below post was by far the most frustrating thing I have ever worked on! There has to be an easier way...whatever happened to click and drag???????

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Flora - my lake

I learned something this week! It is always a good day when you learn something, so here is my attempt to teach you what I have learned.

The word of the day is: Spatterdock. Spatterdock is a perennial water plant that thrives in the shallow areas of lakes and ponds. This is spatterdock! It not only provides beauty with its large elephant-ear foliage and yellow orb-like blooms, but it is crucial to the well being of the mammal, marine and aviary inhabitants of the lake. Speaking of mammals, it is noted that even the Native Americans used this versatile plants for food at one time (I'll take a pass on that).

Considering what a beautiful useful plant this is, I was stunned by the carnage I witnessed one morning this week. I was sitting enjoying the peace of my lake when my attention was drawn to a large water-going vessel passing by. Not so unusual considering I live on a lake...but this one was different. It didn't look anything like a boat. I could try to describe it but the picture is worth a thousand words.

I watched this strange machine, I noticed it was scooping the spatterdock right out of the lake into a large basket...ripping its tender roots out of the lake floor, tearing the yellow orbs from their stems, shredding the large ears that gently undulate in the wind. I sat and watched in horror as this scooping, mulching machine made continuous passes back and forth through the large 'fields' of foliage, leaving in its wake open paths of water.

But seriously folks, spatterdock is quite invasive and there are those who do not like spatterdock...mainly boaters. It must have something to do with the fibrous four foot stems getting wrapped around the props of their ever so expensive engines. And then there are the fishermen who seem irritated by the fact that spatterdock can completely take over a small channel making fishing very hate when you spend more time untangling snags than catching fish.

So each year there is a culling of the 'fields' to make life more enjoyable for those who use the lake. I don't think they ask the fish, birds and other mammals who live in the vegetation for their opinion. I can't help to believe they might have a different opinion.

Even though I like the spatterdock, I like the idea of being able to paddle my kayak through the new channels created by the killing machine. It is like having my own man/nature made maze on the water.

Hey, maybe I will challenge someone to a race! Any takers?

Sunday, June 8, 2008

My Lake

This guy/gal swims by my dock everyday

It really isn't mine...but I like to think it is. I find such peace and happiness within myself as I sit along it's bank and paddle it's current. I think everyone should have a place like this to escape to when life gets to be too much.

Now that school is out, I will be spending more time here. Did I mention I have a camera and I like to take pictures of the flora and fauna that surround my lake? I hope you don't get too bored as I share some of the amazing things I get to see as I sit on my deck or I paddle around in my kayak.

The lake changes everyday. There is always something new and different to see. Stay tuned....

Man jumps from plane with no parachute, dies


Saturday, June 7, 2008

The End

They were singing those classic lyrics we've all sang before: "School's out for summer, school's out till fall ..." I watched them go with tears falling down my checks. I had given them hugs and they had hugged me back and then they walked out the door of a school building some would never come back students. How I would miss some of them!

Those young men and women I have come to love, yes love, and cherish over the course of nine short months. Some of them ready to face high school, some of them having no clue as what was to come. I worried so about them heading into a high school with 1200 other students. Who will take care of them? Who will not only nurture their minds, but also nurture their hearts and souls?

Let me introduce you to a few of my students: Tom, so small in stature and so immature, I am just certain he will end up stuffed in a locker next year. And Drew, his highs and lows, so esoteric in his thinking...who will embrace this different yet wonderful, insightful young man? Sue, the hardest working girl I have ever seen: mature beyond her years, articulate, and outspoken (sometimes to a fault). But a learning disability that could get in her way...will someone help get beyond that? Martin...who watched me for 3/4 of the year before he decided I could be trusted...then I was his best friend. He never did that first homework or took that first note, but he always got A's on the tests! Sometimes I wanted to choke him...he beat us at our own game! Teachers hate that..but he and I laughed about it. Will his new teachers laugh with him or will they punish him? And these are just a few of them. They are delightful...but so needy.

Again I ask, who will take care of them? For these are the children who need the teacher that is willing to give of the heart and the soul not just the brain. The teacher who knows that content is important, but sometimes that content doesn't matter. If the heart and soul aren't sound...the opportunity for learning is closed. Will there be that teacher who is willing to spend time just talking instead of teaching? The teacher who will nurture the heart and the soul so the mind can learn?

The end of the school year is always difficult for me, for there are so many of them that take a piece of my heart with them, I worry there won't be enough left to keep me going. I spend the first part of the summer grieving the ending...the ending of yet another school year. The rest of the summer is spent rejuvenating and regenerating my own heart so I will once again be ready to give it away to another group of needy students in the fall. Because they are fact, they are coming in bigger numbers than ever before.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

She Passed!

Meet the newest certified EMT (the girl not the dog) - Congratulations! This mother is pumped up with pride!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


Where do you find peace? I find mine watching a sunrise on my lake with the man who means the most to me.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Talking to the T.V.

Do you ever find yourself doing this? I do it alot...especially the news. It usually involves a raised voice and some foul language aimed at a reporter. I found myself doing so once again tonight.

This story involved a recent sexual attack of a young woman on our local bike path. Of course the story had the obligatory interview with the young campus co-ed showing off her very scary whistle and cell phone. These are her self-defense items of choice during her morning runs. She also stressed the need to ' always keep my eyes open' (gosh I hope so, otherwise she might run into a tree) and not to be on the path after dark.

The police are offering safety advice as well. However, I think they are missing one obvious element. The police are suggesting staying in pairs and using campus security for escorts. I on the otherhand prefer a different kind of escort...a Smith and Wesson 38 (trumps the scary whistle every time.) Seems logical to me!

You know....

if you don't touch it, you don't have to wash your hands (bathroom hygiene according to a four year old).

Say Thank You

Hey...check this out. What a great idea. Pass it on. I know I will. I normally would have been taking a group of 8th graders to DC in a week or so but due to unforseen circunstances will no longer be going. But I will be forwarding this to the person who is taking my place. I want all the kids going to do this everytime they see a person in uniform. Say Thank You...say it loud and say it proud!

You know...

"You know"...two words my father always started a sentence with that meant, stop what you are doing, take note and maybe even get a pencil, cause the words to follow were going to be full of wisdom and sound advice.

Not the kind of advice that might have come from the Greek philosophers, but good advice that might get you through life just a little bit easier. Something as simple as this while clearing the dirty dishes from the dinner table, "You know...if you don't stack the dishes, you don't have to rinse both sides". Makes sense doesn't it? But how many of us stack the dishes as we clear them from the table?

So in my family, "you know" always signals a time to stop and pay close attention because something big is sure to follow. I hope what is to follow here will always be worth paying attention to. I also hope most of it is logical as I sometimes have been accused of being less than.

Welcome to my attempt to share what I think is important and my attempt to make logic out of my world. I hope you will enjoy reading as much as I will enjoy writing.

I See You!