Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Politics . . .

I don't often engage in political discussion here on my blog.  I don't, because I have found that many people are not able to have an adult conversation about politics when they hold opposing views. 

But today, I'm talking about Politics. 

I know that some of my friends and readers do not share my convictions, but if you are a woman, you need to think long and hard about what you might be taking for granted before you vote on November 6th.

And you need to read this She The People column from The Washington Post.

And then you need to enjoy one of Leslie Gore's songs.  And watch all of it. 

It's three minutes of your life. 

It might change your life.

Ms. Gore is right - women are still fighting for the same things now that they were fighting for in 1964 . . . that's not OK. 

This is a photograph of my mom:


My mom fought for women's rights.  She believed that women's voices should be heard.  She taught me that - she taught every member (both female and male) of my extended family that.

She wasn't some woman in a binder. 

She fought every day as single mom with a small child. 

She fought every day in a "man's" world, competing and winning - and getting paid less than her male counterparts.

She fought for the Equal Rights Amendment.  She was a member of the National Organization for Women.  She was always politically active.  And whatever her friends' political beliefs, she inspired them.  Just as she inspired the members of her family.

I don't care if you don't agree with me - this is America, where - so far - you still have the right to disagree.  But if you are a woman, please know that much of what you might be taking for granted in your everyday life could be ripped away from you.  Contraception and health insurance and economic parity are things that I believe every woman should have access to.  There are other major issues in this election - but for any woman, I think the first piece has to be her right to control her own body. 

Again, no matter what your political beliefs, this is your opportunity to make your voice heard.


p.s.  Please, do your best to be excellent to each other in the comments should you leave any.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Roll With It Baby . . .

I think maybe I just heard that on a commercial for something . . . but it's very apropos for pretty much everything.  At least I think so.  And it's sticking with me.  :-)

The days are passing quickly in October - The leaves from the on-fire tree on my block are long gone.  The mums are deadheaded and I'm thinking about attempting to plant them in the ground this weekend.  The deck furniture must head to the garage this weekend, and although I never changed the screens on the security door to the storms last winter, I'm thinking this winter is going to be a different story, so I might as well do that this weekend, too  :-)

I bought a Christmas decoration last weekend at the 3 French Hens Market in Morris, Illinois, and yes, yes I did just put my Christmas playlist on my Touch.  (I happen to think Christmas music is appropriate pretty much any time at all.)  And I'm considering decorating early for the holidays . . .

No, I'm not rushing the season.  It's rushing itself. 

I just got a huge box of leaves and plant starts from a friend on the East Coast - just in time before the weather gets really cold.  It was a surprise box of joy, filled with all manner of African violet, and I went through everything last night to see what I would keep (not everything makes the cut around here, and my friend knows that  :-) ), and then got about a third of it potted up/put down.  My work is cut out for me tonight - I must finish tonight and get the kitchen back in some sort of order because the cleaning crew comes on Friday.  They will not be pleased if the counter is full of plants   :-D

I recommitted to Weight Watchers, and lost more than 8 pounds this week (I must have been holding on to a LOT of water . . . ) although I'm very frustrated by their newest toy - the ActiveLink.  I thought it would track my activity and translate it into Activity Points.  There are conflicting explanations about how one's baseline is set (it's a joint venture between Philips and WW, and one says one things and the other says the opposite . . . ), and it turns out that it's a challenge device and appears pretty much useless for a true accounting of my activity.  I'm already as active as I can be without quitting my job and living in the gym, I just wanted to track it. 

Yesterday I made 142% of the challenge goal they set for me after a second "assessment period," and I didn't get any activity points for it at all . . .

This morning I just did 45 minutes on the treadmill (that's 2 1/4 miles - I'm a slow walker), and I didn't get anything for that, either.

Alrighty then. 

I'm giving it one more day, but if it keeps on going how it's going, I'm shutting it off and taking the $40 buck loss and chalking it up to experience.

I've pretty much settled on what I'm going to do for my pay it forward folks (yay!), and I'm looking forward to a visit from Linda the Chicken Lady this weekend (yay! again!).

But first - there are leaves and suckers (those are plantlets without roots usually, that form on the center stems of African violets) to pot up and add to my "list."  It's a big list.  It won't stay that big for too long.  I'll make decisions on things as they grow - if they bloom true, if they shape up.

In the meantime, here's a piece of summer to hold on to  :-)  If you haven't actually seen this - be sure to watch to the end . . .

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

You Gotta Be . . .

I'm just back from the Missouri Valley African Violet Council's convention and show in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  I had a great but exhausting time  :-)

And for the first time in my life, I think, I didn't take any photos!  I was very focused on getting footage for my podcast (All About African Violets) and ended up not taking any still shots this time.  Crazy!  But I was very excited to get some interviews with some wonderful folks that I will be able to share over time on the podcast. 

I did, however, take some photos of the trees on my block last week  :-)

Fall 2012

It's that time of year, and I didn't really think we would have much color because of the terrible drought conditions here for much of the summer, but these trees that are right outside my door pretty much never disappoint  :-)

And the trees down the block . . .

Leaves 2012

And the mums on my porch, on their last hurrah . . .

Mums_Low Res

This annual last riot of color and beauty before we descend into Samhain (pronounced "sow" (like a pig) "en" (like the letter N)).  I like Samhain.  It's that time to wrap up lingering projects, take stock, and plant the seeds of new projects for the coming new year.  I so need this right now

I can hear the clock radio in the next room.  I just heard You Gotta Be

I always find it inspiring . . .

I guess because it's about being, not doing.  It's always a good reminder to me to BE, and since I have a true and strong tendency to DO, I'm grateful to be reminded. 

My weekends are clearing now for awhile, which should give me some time again to be, to clean up some lingering projects, and begin to contemplate moving forward.  I've been stuck for far too long.