All Publicity is Good

We had a reporter and photographer from the local Bridgeton News visit our dinner on Sunday. A nice big color photo graced the front page yesterday (above the fold!), accompanied by the following article.

We raised over $2000 at the dinner, due largely to Chinese auction ticket sales and silent auction bids. But, sadly, we had a lot of food left-over at the end of the night. We're working on that.

Not sure how much we're going to give each team member, yet. Three of us are well on our way toward the required $2,200, and three of us have $0 so far. So, I dunno if it'll be an even split or not.

In any case, we have a yard sale coming up this Saturday, a Poker Night on May 9 (we've frozen some beef so we can sell sandwiches as well as make our cut from the pot), we're selling adorable and yummy raspberry-lemonade candles, and we have a (donated) moonbounce we can sell tickets to at the Millville Summer Fest on July 12. With under $600 to go, myself, I'm not worried about making my personal goal. But, we're really trying to work so the whole team benefits and achieves our total team requirement.



Big Day

Been prepping for a few months and especially this past week for our Breast Cancer 3-Day Beef & Beer Dinner.

Today from 3-7 p.m. we will hopefully make tons of money toward our team's fund-raising goals. The "Blister Sisters" have to raise another $8,400 before the event. And as we want to spend the summer focusing on our training ... we want to take care of the money stuff as soon as we can.

Anyway, I'll be spending the day haranguing people into buying Chinese auction tickets and 50-50 tickets. It's all for a good cause, right?



Happy Birthday to Me!

My co-workers gave me one of those "Year You Were Born" birthday cards, and I have to say ... 1971 wasn't all-in-all the best of times.

To wit:
  • Television ads for cigarettes are banned. (yay!)

  • Charles Manson and 3 followers found guilty. (boo!)

  • Nixon installs secret recording system in the White House. (boo!)

  • "All in the Family" debuts. (yay!)

  • George C. Scott refuses his Oscar for Patton, claiming actors should not compete. (yay!)

  • The New York Times begins publishing the secret Vietnam War Pentagon Papers. (erm...)

  • AT&T and Bell Labs tests the first cell phone technology. (I feel old.)

  • AMTRAK begins service. (really? thought AMTRAK much older, somehow.)

  • Four-day Attica riots results in 43 deaths. (boo!)

  • Bretton Woods agreement collapses under weight of the U.S. deficit. (what goes around, comes around)

  • Dollar goes off the gold standard and devalues by 7.9%. (boo!)

  • Hunter S. Thompson writes Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. (never read it, missed the movie)

  • Scientists first warn of nitrogen causing serious damage to the ozone layer. (BOO!)

  • The first Starbucks opens. (yay!)

Also born in 1971: Ewan McGregor and Winona Ryder (knew about them), Tupac Shakur, Jeff Gordon, Kristi Yamaguchi (thought she was younger), and Lance Armstrong (though he was way older).

(not on the card, but found easily on the Net) Also born on April 21: Robert Smith, Iggy Pop, Andie McDowell, Tony Danza, Charles Grodin, Elizabeth II, Anthony Quinn, Charlotte Bronte, Catherine the Great



Weird and Innovative and ... Sympathetic

I don't know what makes me both sort of get icked out by this and want to sort of hug it at the same time, but here it is ... an truly inventive and amazing and yet somehow loveable and still creepy robot critter thing.



Here Come de Fuzz

Only just got over to the second of my two teaching jobs. And I'm told the State Police are on their way over.


Apparently, the school nurse found a wax-paper/cellophane type bag/packet containing a suspicious white powder. It was just lying on the ground under the window of the girls' bathroom. So, now there has to be some sort of investigation.


The hope is that it was inadvertently left last night by a local citizen. School Board polls were open here in the building until 9pm yesterday.

I know what pot smells (and looks) like, but I'm not sure I'd know cocaine from baking powder if given the chance. I just Googled some images and have discovered that crack looks kind of light maple sugar chunks. Cocaine looks like clumpy baking soda. And, heroin looks like, well, dirt.

I have no idea if the students have picked up on the scuttlebutt or not. Guess I'll find out when my prep period ends and the 7th (and later 8th) graders arrive. If there are any students aware, it'd be them.



No News is No News

Random Monday wanderings:

We got a "new" sectional for our family room on Friday. It's really Joe's mom's old one from her rec room. She's moving and isn't moving it. It's in great shape and is a big step up from the old sofa and loveseat we had (which are waiting for nibbles on CraigsList).

Our basement keeps flooding. Not like inches of water across the entire floor or anything, but several gallons each time we use any substantial amount of water (like two showers back-to-back, or a shower and a load of laundry). It has been raining around here quite a lot. 3+ inches just in April. Our water table is usually quite high. I mean, my house is only about 15 feet about sea level. So at this time of year, the very thin, sandy soil is about as saturated as it can get. When we dump a lot of water into our sepctic system, the water already out there in the world pushes back on it. Stuff is draining, sure, but it's sloooow. Very slow. So, water ends up backing up through the large drainpipe in the basement and gushing out the top of the washing machine drain pipe, which is open at the top. It's the lowest point of opening in the house. (Oh, some water seems to be squeezing/dripping in at the wall, as well...which is also worrisome, as we don't know if it's a re-tarring the outer wall problem, or a leak in the pipe problem.)

So I spent $24 at the local laundromat yesterday washing and very-partially-drying all of our laundry (probably about 8 regular laundery loads).

We also went to see a local high school production of Guys and Dolls, visited the local zoo, attended our best family friends daughter's first communion, and saw Joe sings a capella with the group he's in (the Cumberlads, for anyone keeping score at home).

This next weekend the Brownies have "Pirate Camp." I'll be running a raingutter regatta. Woo!



Feeling a Call

I'm feeling a call to action. I don't know if it's due to the current politically-charged atmosphere or what. Maybe it's something in the water. Maybe it's my two daily 25-minute NPR-fueled commutes. Maybe it's just the right stage in my life to do something.

I have two great kids with whom I am conscienctiously involved. I'm already a teacher and Cub Scout leader. I'll be a Girl Scout leader come the fall. I deliver Children's Messages at church. I walk 60 miles each October to help cure breast cancer. I recycle, use fluorescent lightbulbs and do almost all my shopping at Goodwill. How more can I positively impact the future?

I dunno. But I want to. I want to change things, improve things. Make a difference.

I'm seriously considering running for public office or something.

Joe doesn't know any of this, yet.

I've literally just printed out the Millville City Commission meeting schedule. The next meeting is April 15. I'm so there.


A Post About Not Posting

Yeah, I've had nothing really to say. But that's not it.

Yeah, I've been busy. But that's not it.

Mostly I've just been blah. Joe claims I do this every year at about this time. All I know is this -- my allergies are fogging my brain, the rainy/hazy weather is fogging my mood and I'm just generally ready for June. Strictly speaking, I know my mood/outlook will pick up shortly. Right now I'm worn out and there's a whole 'nother marking period looming ahead of us, so ...not so much light at the end of the tunnel, as it were.



Texas-sized Photo Post

Pictures from Texas ... I have over 100 I've kept and PhotoShopped to the beautiful creations you see here. I've uploaded the lot of them to the Picasa Albums, but you can see some highlights by scrolling down...
down...and down some more.


ps. Jonny was doing a school science project -- a PowerPoint presentation featuring at least 40 different varieties of flower. I had fun showing him my camera's macro feature and then he used the camera throughout our visit to the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. Some of the pics in the Flora Album were taken here in SoJo, but most are from our trip. I'm enjoying taking close-ups, so there will be more additions to this album, for sure.