Friday, August 29, 2008

Quite A Week

D's employer, Aristos Logic, was just purchased this week, by Adaptec. This has caused some disruption at work and sucked up a lot of D's at-home time, due to the enormous amount of paperwork involved in signing yourself over to a new employer. Investment plans, health insurance, etc., etc.

One week of college out of the way. If only I could say the same for the homework. I am taking Biology in order to wake up my brain and train it for the actual required classes (Anatomy, Microbiology, Physiology), and now I'm glad I did it this way. I am not at all accustomed to being tested on what I have read. I read the first chapter of my textbook, took the mock quiz at the end, and only got about half the questions right. I apparently have many neural pathways that need to be dusted off. Textbook comprehension is a skill I have allowed to atrophy.

And the class is at 7:30 am, two days a week. Waking up at 6:00 to get ready, catch the bus, and pay attention in class is not problem at all. But that middle-of-the-day "I want a nap" phase is going to be a problem. Yesterday was the lab, and I quickly eliminated one young lady as a future lab partner due to her astonishing level of ignorance (which she was happy to flaunt) and lack of any curiosity or interest in what we were doing. I am not actually very old, and yet I felt so unbelievably older and more experienced than any of the kids surrounding me. They still talk about what cars are better, whether particular Judas Priest albums are for posers or the truly cool, and how "Blake is so like totally such an a-hole." I finally had to put on my iPod. (By the way, if you like electronic bleep-bloop dance music, the Faint's new album has a couple of killer tracks.)

At least I have solved the problem of what to do with Eli. My sister-in-law gave me the # of a woman she goes to church with, and she'd love to watch Eli for an extra $100 a month. Yee-Haw! I'm back in college!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Self-destruct!

I may have just done something very foolish.

I have been very open here about my political liberalness, because you are my friends and I know you love me, even if I am a godless communist (just kidding). But of course being a Mormon liberal is not a particularly easy thing. The church (mostly) tries to stay very neutral, but we all know that the rank and file tend to run Republican. There is a tacit assumption that we all think the same, politically.

I just got an email, from a woman I go to church with and am fond of, that appeared to have been forwarded to most of my ward/congregation. It was basically an anti-Democrat smear piece, claiming that since all the Senate Democrats voted against an amendment (to the Immigration Reform Act of 2006) that offered up some tough (but ultimately watered-down and mostly symbolic) talk about making English the official language of this country, they therefore are traitors to the military, anti-freedom, etc., etc. The facts don't support the email smear, and because I am incapable of keeping my mouth shut when it's good for me, I decided to respond. This is the kamikaze response I sent out:
Dear Everybody Who got this forwarded to them -

I fail to see how a vote on an amendment to the
Immigration Reform Act (amendment 4064) constitutes an
action that "damages morale and undermine[s] the
military." There are over 30,000 foreign-born
soldiers serving in our military right now, many of
whom do not speak English as their first language.

On the very same day of the vote on amendment 4064,
every Democrat in the Senate voted in support of
amendment 4073, from which i quote:

"The government of the United States shall preserve
and enhance the role of English as the common and
unifying language of America."

So yes, even the loathsome Democrats voted in favor of
this.

Don't believe every bit of hooey that gets forwarded
to you by somebody who shares your political beliefs.
If you'd like a little more information on this
particular strain of anti-Democrat chain email, you
can read this entry on Snopes:

http://www.snopes.com/politics/immigration/englishvote.asp

This is as good a time as any to come out of the
closet and identify myself as pretty darned liberal.
Not a democrat - i believe our party system serves us
very poorly. If I'm the only liberal in the ward, so
be it. I love you, my ward brothers and sisters, and
I love my country and the ideals it was founded on.
Please, please don't try to paint me and the political
candidates I support as traitors to our country. That
is the worst, lowest, and most specious form of
political dialogue. When we begin to treat those who
simply disagree with us as our enemies, we sow the
seeds of division and hatred.

Now we see what happens, eh?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

My fantasy house

egads! the LA Times ran these photos of what is almost my dream house. i love, love, love it.

Look here!


what's your dream style?

The Phoenix Has Landed

Remember my cousins who were moving to China? They just got there. Lee is keeping a blog, so if you are curious to follow the adventures of an American family who uproot themselves completely and move to the other side of the world, check it out:

Resolutelee

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Back in the Saddle

At Saddleback college. I checked the online schedule today, and amazingly there was an opening in one of the two formerly closed Biology 20 class courses I really wanted. So I'm registered and have a spot in a class! Starting next Tuesday, at 7:30 am, I will be back in college. I am nervous and have small misgivings (I had a dream last night that I left/abandoned Eli with some long-lost cousin and went to France for 6 months), but this feels right and really good.

Now I just have to figure out what to do with the boys. Paul starts first grade (!!!!) on September 4, but Eli will still need to be watched. Dan is being very supportive and says that in the worst case he will bend his work schedule a little bit in order to accommodate me. That's love, kids.

And Paul's return to school puts me in a dither vis-a-vis daily lunches. Nuts are not allowed (grrr), and for semi-vegetarians like us that creates a wee problem. No PB&J's or AB&J's?! It's an insult. But between tofu, eggs, seitan, and rice & beans I can give him sufficient protein. I just love the simplicity of a good nut butter sandwich. I'll never go as fussy and pretty as Vegan Lunch Box, but he'll eat well anyway.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Argh. Grrrr. Gahhh.

First, I have Montana pics. Flickr is giving me a hard time because I'm too cheap to pay for an account, so they are kind of random. Look here!

Frustration rules at our house. I have a sewing project that is driving me batty, all of the classes I want at school are full, Eli refuses to give up diapers (I promise you, that is ALL the elimination talk you will get around here), my re-commitment to eating vegetarian 6 days a week is being met with resistance from Paul ("You know I don't like vegetables! Why do you keep cooking them?"), and somehow we keep dirtying up the dishes and wanting clean clothes. Oh, and it's hot! At times I am a very, very cranky Mama.

Since I can't enroll Eli in the daycare at Saddleback anyway (no diapers allowed, how nice to be so choosy!), I am now enrolling VERY last-minute at Fullerton College (yes, Stephen, I'll call you about it) so that Courtney (my SIL) can watch the boys while I desperately petition to be added to whatever class course will have me. I'll have to take the train, but we'll make this work somehow. The Fullerton arrangement may be best after all, as Courtney and I can work out a very agreeable solution (if I can get into any classes).

Friday, August 08, 2008

Nope. No way. Nuh-uh.

I was looking back through my sister (in law) Courtney's blog, and I noticed that she tagged me with this ridiculous "take a picture of your house just as it is" blogger virus.

Courtney, I love you. But not you or anyone else in heaven or hell could compel me to participate in this madness. Housewives, unite against the tyranny of clean houses! Burn your back issues of Martha Stewart Living! Let those Cheerios stay on the floor a few more days! Who cares if the bathroom smells like stale diapers? (OK, even I'm grossed out by that one.)

My house is a mess. Instead of cleaning it, I'm uploading Montana pictures and reading news online. Bah phooey.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Re-Education

First, an apology. I said I would have Montana pictures up, and I don't yet. I can't find the camera, which is a bit of an obstacle. Sorry I haven't come through yet.

I've always felt my formal education comes up short. I love to semi-dishonestly tell people I'm a high school dropout, but the truth is I took the equivalency exam. I went to community college, but due to my less-than-stable life in my late teens and my complete inability to pick a career field, it took me a few years to get my AA, during which time Daniel and I married. I transferred to CSU Fullerton, but dropped out after one week because Daniel and I realized we simply could not afford to live and have both of us in college at the same time. Since he was a math/engineering major and I had settled on the economically useless field of Theatre Arts, plus I had more work experience and could earn the whopping sum of $10 an hour (not too shabby in 1997!), I was the obvious choice to drop out. I've taken a random course here and there, but as of right now I have no marketable skills or career education.

Last week I applied for community college. My enrollment priority stinks - I won't be able to actually enroll in a class until Monday the 11th, and the class I need to start with (Biology 20) only has two open courses. I'm shooting for the nursing program at our local community college. Dan and I are having an early mid-life crisis and our nascent desire to get the bloody hell out of southern CA has reared up again. We need job skills that are marketable anywhere, unlike computer engineering which pays very lucratively but pretty much requires us to stick close to major, overpriced and overcrowded cities. So try not to bite off all of your fingernails while waiting to find out if I get the class I need!