Thursday, September 30, 2010

random notes

I think after the half marathon, I will forgo distance running. This is even though some people don’t consider 13 miles to be a distance. Some people run 50 miles…or a hundred. I’m not too interested in that. It’s painful to run 5 miles although not as painful as it once was.

The river is still up and all the major highways into town are closed. You can get in and out via alleys if you know the right ones. But at least we have running water and the use of our toilets. In St. Clair, they have to use porta pots. Imagine getting up in the dark of night to use a porta pot on the corner under a street light.

Last night Regis and I decided to camp out on the porch. We put the blow-up bed out there, hung some patio lights, and got the gimpy dog to curl up on the couch. We woke up about midnight, very uncomfortable, and moved the camping trip into our real bed. It was a nice idea but not very practical.

Peter has gone to stay with his dad in Eagle Lake for a few days until the water recedes and he can drive back and forth to Mankato without filling the gas tank in the middle. He packed enough clothes to stay for a month.

We suspect that Peter has a love interest. He has mentioned the name of a young woman, told us where she’s from, and told us that she goes to school in Mankato. This is way more information than we ever gotten in the past from him about anything. When he was in high school, asking what he had for lunch was considered a personal question.

These are the reasons we are suspicious:
  • Frequent showers and haircuts
  • Frequent shopping trips
  • Preening in front of the mirror
  • Asking us what we think of his clothing as he prepares to go out
  • Asking us what we think of his cologne (57 dollars a bottle)
  • Purchasing hygiene products. In the past he was content with anything he could scavenge from our bathroom closet.
  • Mentioning that the young woman asked if she could ever come to his house. I suggested he avoid taking her to the basement where the cobwebs are pronounced and the junk fruitful.
I’ve told him that I won’t be happy if the first I know of a girlfriend is when I see his marriage license in the newspaper. This happened to some friends of ours and it caused them some major angst.

Regis applied for a job last week and had an interview on Friday. Of course, we thought he was perfectly qualified for the job but they wanted someone with more experience. Harrumph. I will admit to a tiny little selfish thought…if he got this great job, I would commence writing my letter of retirement. Most of my thinking was for him: he has worked so hard for this, he has been disappointed by jobs before, and he deserves this good thing. Through our conversations the last few days, I’ve realized some things again about this sweet man I am married to. He cares about my welfare as much as his own, maybe more. He takes such good care of me…making sure my car is filled with gas, my lunch is packed, my clothes are clean, my computer works. He seems to know my state of mind as well, maybe better, than I do. I don’t know what I did in my life to deserve him but our life together is good and happy.

Monday, September 27, 2010

the way to get into town is by boat

Our town is experiencing flooding again. I don't know if this is historic proportions but I've never seen it like this. Both lanes of 169 are closed, 22 is closed to the south, and 99 is closed to the east. It's a mess. Bob and Emily have lost the use of their basement and water is pouring in through the cracks in the walls. The pictures are of 169 and you can see that both lanes are completely covered. Water is lapping at the edge of the McDonald's parking lot. While Regis and I stood looking and taking pictures, some jackass in a big pickup roared across the street and sprayed water for fifty feet. I swear, if he had gotten us wet, there would have been trouble.

 I took today off and did exactly what I planned to do. I did nothing this morning, Regis and I took a drive this afternoon to survey the flood waters, and we stopped for a burger at Guenther's in Mankato. If you have been around here for a while, you might remember a place called Hamburger Heaven. This is it, reopened. Great burgers, onion rings made famous by the Junction Inn, and malts made with real ice cream in metal cups. Highly recommend but don't go at lunch time. The waitress said people are lined up to get a place to sit. It's a tiny place with three booths, a few seats at the counter, and maybe seating for 12-15 at tables.

I made a meat loaf, mashed potatoes, and squash for dinner. If that isn't fall food, I don't know what is. I tried Alton Brown's technique...making a free form meat loaf and cooking it on a broiler pan so the grease can drip down. We're sure enjoying the meat got from Mike the Meat Man. We're having one of Mike's chickens tomorrow night for dinner.

I thought I was signed up to run Women Run the Cities on Sunday, a ten-mile race. Friday, Rachel said they hadn't received an email about me but I was sure I had the confirmation email at home so I checked. Nope. I remembered then, that the day I tried to register, the website had been goofy so I intended to go back later. Here's what I have: strong legs and a dumb head. No registration. Event closed. Rachel offered to register for the 5K and I could run her 10 mile. Regis commented that she might now want my time associated with her name so I consider it a kindness that she offered. Next time, I guess.

It has been a busy weekend and a busy Monday. Off to bed to finish another book about Frank Lloyd Wright. Please don't let me read any more books about FLW or Henry the VIII.

Good night and happy Tuesday.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Elliot stays overnight with Nana and Popop

And now Nana and Popop have to go take a big nap because they aren't used to taking care of 18-month old babies.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

home again home again jiggety jig

I left home Sunday afternoon for a conference in Rochester. I had a good time at the Grand Kahler (in spite of getting lost on my way to the pool and having to walk down 11 flights of stairs. Thank God for all those squats I did in the last year is all I can say.) I had dinner with Steve and Sherry and Catie at Chester's on Monday night and the walleye cakes were delicious. The conference was a big disappointment but the traveling and meeting folks and eating out was great.

So good to be home, though. So good to be home. I got a haircut on my way back then met Regis at Plaza Garibaldi in North Mankato for fajita quesadillas. So good to be home with my sweet husband, my dog, and my own bed.

My room at the Kahler was about what you'd expect with the AARP discount but the bar on first floor, Martini's, is so much fun that I'll forgive the hard bed and teeny room.

I don't drink martinis. I told the ladies from ND I was visiting with that they would have to call 911 if I drank a martini. They do serve a nice red wine in a beautiful tall glass.

Regis had a surprise for me when I got home to celebrate my attainment of the Rule of 90 status tomorrow: this beautiful sterling ring with a dragonfly which symbolizes transformation, you know.


I don't know what the Rule of 90 means for me right now. We have all the information sitting in a folder on a shelf but for some reason we don't move beyond that. One of these days. I was in Kohl's this afternoon and they were making a plea for people to apply for jobs. That sounds like fun but I'd never bring a paycheck home. I'd have lots of cool clothes and big earrings, though. Trade-offs. Life is about trade-offs. Does living in a van down by the river because you can't afford your mortgage qualify as a trade-off if you don't have to go to work in the morning? Hysterical laughter. Keep a bedroom in the basement for us, Mom!

We're listening to Folk Scene with Bruce Davis. It's our Tuesday night ritual.

I stopped at Kohl's in my travels the last few days and bought a few sweaters in gorgeous fall colors: pumpkin, aubergine, and charcoal.

No more news, I guess. I could see fall in the fields and road ditches. The sun is lower in the sky. The breeze is cool in the morning. Fall is here and I love it. Have a good end of the week, friends, and do something fun every day.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

why i hate the news

These were the headlines in the online Tribune this morning:

I need to know any of this? This is not news. This is national enquirer stuff that nobody needs to know. The only reason I would want to know any of this is if the convict in the porn case is on his way down my street and intends to make me look at the porn. Then I would want to get off the patio and into the house and lock the door. I believe in "need to know" and I don't need to know this shit.

Yesterday the students in one of our schools were making a huge deal about some breast cancer bracelets bearing the slogan: I love boobies. Of course this appeals to kids but they had seen on television that some schools were banning them so they wanted to force our hand. Big deal. I love boobies.

That's my only cranky comment today.

This is really odd. When I run, the only thing that gets sore is my shoulders. All they do is hold up my arms and that doesn't seem like such a big deal.

Isn't google the best? I just put in the words "sore shoulders after running" and got more than two million hits. What did we do before google? Regis thinks we looked things up the old-fashioned way but I think we more than likely forgot the question before we ever got to a book to find it.

The lady who cleans our house loves our dog. She raises dogs and loves all of them, but Kramer especially. She always has a treat for him in her pocket when she comes. He gets so excited to see her and yesterday, with his bad legs, he started slipping around on the kitchen floor. She started to cry. I don't know what's sadder, Kramer getting old and feeble or Jan crying.

I'm almost done with the book about FLW. It's taken me a month to read not so much because it's bad but it just isn't very compelling. I think I need to abandon the Kindle, too. I just can't deal with the books with no covers. I don't know what's on there and I don't know what I've read. I like the pile of books beside the bed. With covers and authors names.

I'm hungry for Mexican food today so we're either going to Mazatlan for dinner or I'll make flank steak fajitas on the grill. Making the fajitas at home would probably be the better idea since we have a ton of tomatoes and cilantro from the garden. We'll see how ambitious I am.

Have a great Saturday, my friends.

Friday, September 17, 2010

the color of sweet and good grief

Two of my off-spring asked me to procure books for them this week. Tiffany needed The Color of Water by James McBride and Peter needed Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Hurston. I love to read and tried to encourage them to love reading but I've always felt I was only partially successful at that. These books were not hard to find so they didn't really need me to do it...but it was nice to be part of the transaction anyway.

A friend of mine who left the district, gave me her tall director's chair in a lovely leopard print. It was kind of tough to track it down but yesterday Bev, who brings our school mail, delivered it. So much fun to sit on!

I have so many things to do in the house all of a sudden. It's into fall and I haven't gotten out my fall stuff. I love my little leaf dishes and the fall table cloth and the pumpkins. Maybe tomorrow. One of the things I look forward to in retirement is the slowing down of this season. The start of the school year is so busy that it seems like you blink and it's Thanksgiving. I'd like to be able to enjoy fall...really enjoy it. I hope this isn't something I think will happen but won't.

When people feel the pinch of time and resources, I've noticed that they get a little cranky. Sometimes about really dumb stuff. Like how many toilets we have or are going to get and where the new ones should go. All I can say to that is:

Go take a walk and kick a few leaves. Get over yourself. Let it go. Pour yourself a glass of wine and sit in the sun. Listen to the wind in the birch tree. Watch the chickadees on the peanut ball. Who cares about the flippin' toilets. If you have one and most of the time it works, be happy about it and go about your day.

I've been listening to a new podcast called The Moth; true stories told live without notes. Here's what the website says about The Moth:

The Moth, a not-for-profit storytelling organization, was founded in New York in 1997 by poet and novelist George Dawes Green, who wanted to recreate in New York the feeling of sultry summer evenings on his native St. Simon's Island, Georgia, where he and a small circle of friends would gather to spin spellbinding tales on his friend Wanda's porch. After moving to New York, George missed the sense of connection he had felt sharing stories with his friends back home, and he decided to invite a few friends over to his New York apartment to tell and hear stories. Thus the first "Moth" evening took place in his living room. Word of these captivating story nights quickly spread, and The Moth moved to bigger venues in New York. Today, The Moth conducts eight ongoing programs and has brought more than 3,000 live stories to over 100,000 audience members.

I subscribe to it through iTunes so it automatically downloads when I open iTunes. Somehow it gets sucked into my iPod so I can listen to it while I walk or run. I have no idea how this really happens. 

Another thing about which I really do not have much of a clue is the little RSS symbol on the top right. Bob was telling me about it last week but I lost interest when it started to sound like Phoenician. Then a friend of mine from a message board suggested that I have an RSS feed. I stumbled around in cyber space until this little thing appeared on my blog. Karen says I did it right and now my blog gets sucked into her email inbox. Amazing stuff.

I envision a system someday that will operate much like the mysterious way Lutheran ministers get called to a parish. It just happens and they know. You won't have to really ever DO anything. Things like your banking and bill paying and package sending will be initiated by your thoughts and we'll sit like amorphous blobs, just reviewing the end results. Ha!

Anyway, check out The Moth. Great stories told by real people.

Two projects I need to finish up this weekend: another wine trip. This one is an over-nighter to Rochester with a few stops at vineyards along the way. I just have to iron out the details on this one.

Our friends Bob and Marilyn are coming to St. Peter the first weekend in November to do a program of poetry and love songs. Vickie is going to host at her home so we're putting the finishing touches on the plans. Mom, can you come? Bob and Marilyn, there are lots of things going on behind the scenes! I'll send an email this weekend to fill you in on our planning. We're looking forward to it!

Here we go. It's 4:30 a.m. on Friday morning. I'm going to the Pulse to run five miles. Then I'm having coffee with Joanne at Waldo's. If we work up the courage, we'll go to work. Happy weekend, friends!

Monday, September 13, 2010

things I'd rather do today

  1. Clean up the garden
  2. Dehydrate zucchini and apples
  3. Sort through my closet and make a box for the thrift store
  4. Finish Loving Frank
  5. Take a nap
  6. Make vegetable beef soup
  7. Go for a walk and listen to Shufflefunction on my iPod
  8. Have coffee at River Rock with a friend
  9. Write something
  10. Get a massage
  11. Dig out some of the crappy looking perennials
  12. Freeze basil
  13. Call my mom
  14. Bake something with apples
  15. Go to TJ Maxx

Sunday, September 12, 2010

my well-developed right brain

I ran 9 miles this morning. It took me two hours and of course, I walked some so I had a lot of time to think.

I've read somewhere that the right brain is what keeps you from liking to exercise because it's the side of your brain that drives you to pleasure instead of pain. I've had many years of pleasure-seeking and pain avoidance. My right brain says things to me like this: You can't run, your feet will hurt. You could fall and hurt your hip. You should go home now, I think you need something to eat.

I've learned to pack well when I run outside. It might seem like extra weight to people who worry about time, but since I don't, it doesn't. This morning, I took a jacket with a half a peanut butter sandwich in one pocket and a kleenex and my iPod in the other. I wore my hydration pack so I had water. I wore a hat to keep the sun out of my eyes. I was one well-prepared scout.

My physical discomforts were taken care of so I thought about my psychological discomfort. I'm a little leery of running outdoors where people can see me. I like to go on Sunday morning when people aren't out and about too much and I can be alone on the road. I have a path that isn't well-traveled. I never (well, almost never) go with anyone because I don't want to be the one who holds them back. I think this comes from years of feeling non-athletic and always feeling like the last one picked for games.

I wasn't good at sports. Until I learned I could make people laugh in a game of basketball, I avoided any kind of sport. I grew up in a time when girls didn't play sports and really, didn't even play games for fun. We had a once-a-month girls athletic club but we played games like deck tennis. Not a game widely played in the real world.

I told Nikki at the Banana Relay last week that I'm not competitive but I don't like when people pass me. Ha! Maybe that is competitive. How would I know?

I don't plan to make a career of running. I'm not sure I'll ever do another long run after the half marathon in Mankato. It feels good though, to know that I can run ten miles. I've managed to quiet the right brain.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

great time at rock bend

We had a great time at Rock Bend. Beautiful weather and a huge crowd. this is City of my favorite bands since 1971.

Here's a shot of the crowd in front of us. We were halfway between the flag pole and the Lion's beer booth. Easy to scope out all the food choices. Close to the bathrooms. On the main thoroughfare so we saw a lot of people pass by. Great fun. We're heading back tomorrow for a couple more bands.


I just checked weather underground and the forecast shows:

          Saturday                           Sunday

Perfect weather for the Rock Bend Folk Festival! We're heading down to the park about 2:00.

Friday, September 10, 2010

door project derailed

A guy came to measure for our new door. We had measured, but if he was installing it, he wanted to make sure it fit.

Then he did a scratch test for lead paint. Our house was built before 1978 so he said it was likely there was lead paint.

Positive for lead paint. Now, here's the deal.

The installation charge goes up by several hundred dollars. That will make it $500-600.

He has to cover the entire living room with 6ml plastic sheeting. He has to cover the outdoor area for 10 feet outside of the door with 6ml plastic sheeting. He has to string caution tape around an area twenty feet outside of that.

The furnace (if it is on) has to be shut off and the vents in the house covered.

Small children and pets would not be allowed to eat any of the paint chips.

We would have to get a permit to install the door. When we get the permit, they will ask who is installing the door. If we are paying someone, they will ask if the person is lead certified.

If an uncertified person puts in the door (for money) they can be fined $32,000 by the EPA. Or apparently arrested by the door police.

I sent this guy away. He was very nice but this is madness.

We paid 50 dollars for the lead test and the measuring but he can't measure once he knows there's lead because then he would have to go through the above steps.

I said it wasn't so much the money but the rest of this craziness. I'll install the damn door with a table knife and a wooden shoe. I assembled a bicycle once with only those tools.

The result is that more and more doors and windows will be installed by amateurs. Lead paint will be everywhere. Small children and pets will be lined up to eat lead paint chips.

Can you imagine the lead dust blowing around this town after the tornado?

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

first day of school blues

You'd think I was back in kindergarten. I've hardly slept for two nights worrying about school and other life trials and tribulations. No matter how much work you do in August, the week before school starts and the first day of school are just shit-hitting-the-fan fun. At least I've learned to control my BP which is more than I can say for some people who seem to think that every damn little thing is cause for wing flapping and shrieking.

Here are just some of the first day of school emergencies:

  • A carpet not cleaned properly
  • Rust marks on the carpet
  • Rusty (really rusty) legs on the desks
  • Two toilets not replaced
  • Lack of job descriptions (this is probably the biggest deal)
  • Bus issues as in the bus can't come at the time we want it to
  • Papers unsigned
  • Kids going here instead of there

People should know that once you go home and make a pot of chicken soup and pour a glass of wine, all of this recedes into the realm of "it doesn't matter" or the gray clouds of vagery (an erratic, unpredictable, or extravagant manifestation, action, or notion). There you go and ah, well.

Regis and I are doing our usual early evening laptop gazing and wine sipping. He had class today and that's always a little stress provoking, especially in the early days of the semester.

I'm in the middle of a book I'm tired of reading. I won't say the name in case it's your favorite book. I'm really weary of reading about this dude's love life so I might just do another book abandonment. I've done a lot of that lately. I know some people have rules against it but not me.

Regis looked at bug spray at the man mall yesterday with the intent of buying some. We have a monster spider who lives in the space between the kitchen window and the screen. Jan has cleaned it out three times and within a day, the spider is back and the web is bigger than ever. He's so persistent that I hate to just kill him. I suggested we scoop him up in a paper towel and transport him to the woods at the edge of the yard. Regis thought that was ridiculous so we're at a stand-off. The spider survives.

Over the weekend, I rescued two other bugs. One was a tiny spider who almost washed down the bathtub drain. I thought he was a goner but then I saw him floating in the water so I scooped him out and set him to dry on a can of hairspray. Before I got out of the tub, his little legs must have dried out because he was gone.

The other bug was a moth who almost went down the kitchen sink drain. He was a tough one. I had to rescue him twice because he kept flapping around and going back down the drain. I encouraged him (with a paper towel) to migrate to the sidewalk in the back of the house. Weird. I know.

Our little dog Kramer is having some (read: potentially fatal) problems with his back legs. Last time Regis took him to the vet, she said that it looked like a nerve problem in his back that was impacting his legs. He doesn't have much control over his left rear leg so it's hard for him to navigate on the linoleum. He makes it onto the couch most to the time but she warned against jumping...we just don't know how to make him stop aside from turning the furniture over which would be inconvenient for the humans. We've tried chondroitin and fish oil and all the other home remedies. He isn't in pain and he still eats and drinks and plays so he's fine for now. Sad to see your little pet go downhill.

We're looking forward to the Rock Bend Folk Festival this weekend. We drag a couple lawn chairs down to the park and hang out with our hippie friends for a while. It's great fun. They sell all kinds of fried food and beer and wine and crafts of the jewelry and tie-dye variety. What a hoot.

On Tuesday nights we listen to Bruce Davis's folk music program on KMSU. Tonight he's playing music by the folks who are coming to the festival. We send each other email reminders so we don't forget about it. Yes, this is what happens when you get old. You have to send yourself an email reminder. What did old people do before email and voice mail? Post-it notes?

Monday, September 06, 2010

buying a new door

I hate picking out stuff like this. There are too many options. These are the things I had to decide:

  • steel or fiberglass
  • window or no window
  • color of metal in the window
  • color of the door
  • color of the hinges
  • type of door knob and lockset
  • color of door knob and lockset
  • type of storm door
  • color of storm door

You can see this is a nightmare. It took me all of about five minutes and mostly we asked the dude what he would pick. He's the door professional, right?

Here's the kind of door we yearn for...because it looks like something that would be at the bottom of an oak tree in a forest and gnomes would come out of it but really it's a massive solid oak door that you would find on the front of some rich person's mansion. The picture is just tiny. If we put this on our house, we'd have to gut two rooms. Who buys this stuff? Really.

So, we bought some kind of door (fiberglass) with a window (oval) in a prepainted color (red) with a knob (brushed silver). Some guy will come and put it in after they do the lead paint test. If we have lead paint anywhere, the consequences are dire. Picture the scene from ET where the men in suits come to investigate. It would be like that, I'm sure.

Honor Labor Day! Here's to all our hard-working friends and neighbors and family.

Happy birthday to Vickie and Tom!

start of the school year anxiety

I found other images for anxiety that were more descriptive than this one but frankly, they were scary. This one is more peaceful. This is where I need to lead my mind.

Last night, I hardly slept. I think it's partly the start of school and partly seeing our kids so much. It all triggers those gray faced men to march around the bed all night, reminding me of all the bad things that are out there.

We have a busy day planned. We're off to the Man-Store to find a new entry door for our house. This is an overwhelming task for me. I hate picking things out because I tend to do it impulsively then not like my choice later. Not a good thing. I hope we can find a helper who is older than 15 to assist.

Grocery store. It shouldn't be busy today.

Pay bills. No anxiety in that, thank God.

Sort through paperwork. I hate this job. Where does all that crap come from and why do I save it?

Friends on the porch at 3:00. Ahhhhh. That will be the lovely part of the day.

Sunday, September 05, 2010


Such a nice party to celebrate Bob's 31st birthday. The food was great: barbecued ribs cooked by the birthday boy, broccoli salad, baked beans, roasted potatoes, and an ice cream cake. the mosquitoes made it almost impossible to be outside but otherwise, everything was splendid. Don't we have handsome offspring? Reg and Amber...where are you in the photos? Next time....


From Elliot and Nana

Regis and I took care of Elliot for a little while yesterday while the other grown-ups were busy doing something. He's not an age to be very helpful with those kinds of things. We had a nice time and Regis took a lot of pictures. We're going to another family event this afternoon (Bob's 31st birthday) so there will be more pictures of the little kids!

Peter was telling us of his amazement that Subway had hired two older people (in their thirties). He said if they hire people that old they're going to be breaking their legs. What the. We almost fell off our chairs laughing and I reminded him that I ran three and a half miles while he laid in bed the other day.

Beautiful fall weather other there! Get out and enjoy the day!

Saturday, September 04, 2010

windy friday

I registered for the Banana Relay with two people who are closer to my age but crap happens and they couldn't do it. I ran the relay with two 8-year olds who did a great job. I think we were the team with the youngest members and the oldest member.

You had to run two miles, then pass the banana to the next team member. This little guy stepped in at the last minute to complete our team. He was fast. His little feet were smokin' when he headed out for the last leg.

We didn't win any prizes but we had a great time. The kids had banana splits and the rest of us in the over-21 crowd went to Patrick's for a glass of wine. You got to stay hydrated when you're an athlete, you know.

Yesterday morning I thought I would walk downtown to do some errands. I got about 3 blocks away from home and decided, due to the wind, this was a bad idea. I turned around and took the car. I parked it by the bank and walked around to do my errands, though, so got to stop in the two new gift shops on Minnesota Avenue. Cute stuff and nice people.

It's 46 degrees this morning. Shouldn't there be more than 12 hours between the time you have your AC on and your furnace on? We didn't turn the heat on yesterday but I was tempted. Regis saw a friend of ours mowing his lawn in a parka and a stocking cap. Minnesota. Good grief.

Why do thrift stores all have that same smell? Stuff never smells bad when it's in your house but you collect all the old junk in one spot and it's a bad collective impression. If they could do something about that smell, their stuff would be a lot more appealing. Well, maybe a little bit more appealing.

Regis got this email this morning from AARP: Spice Up Your Love Life. I thought it was mind-boggling when Paul McCartney was on the cover of the AARP magazine but this, this is a little too weird. We have a young friend (in his 30's) who shudders when we make the most remotely romantic comment in his presence. Old people having sex, he says, and he just shudders. I should send him this article.

I've been on a cooking jag lately. Yesterday I made a boat load of chili and used chipotle pepper instead of chili powder. It got a little spicy so this will be chili for which grated cheese or sour cream is a necessity. Also made a huge meatloaf. These are fall foods, folks, so you know what's coming.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

first week of the school year

Even though I have what is referred to as an extended contract and work most of June and August, the first official week of the school year is a killer. We had our district day on Monday...ll teachers gathered in the theater for the inspirational speeches and power points of district goals and bad financial news. It isn't too painful but it is way over-stimulating. Some of those folks I have only seen once a year for the thirty years I've worked here. It's a struggle to remember their names. That is task enough, let alone concentrating on PLC goals and AYP results.

So, we have only eaten out once this week which is an improvement over some years when I can hardly find my way home in the afternoon much less round up the gumption to cook a meal. Last night we had stuffed peppers, our new favorite summer meal. I should have taken a picture of them on the grill...they're beautiful. Here's a few pictures from our evening.

Roasted vegetables

Pico de gallo with fresh tomatoes still warm from the sun

There was a dearth of good coffee (considered a sin in the Lutheran Church) at the school yesterday. The pot they served at break tasted like it had been made with radishes and tree bark. Seriously nasty and undrinkable. When I got to my school, someone had made a pot with Folgers kept in the refrigerator all summer. Mortal sin in the Lutheran Church. So, today I am bringing my own, which I usually do. Bad coffee is like non-alcohol beer. What is the point?

We had a wonderful thunderstorm that started about 3 this morning. Rolling thunder and cracks of lightening. It also brought a nice fresh breeze. I was in a wakeful period so I heard a lot of it. Then I was too tired to get up at 4 and exercise so my routine is disrupted today. Scream.

Have a good day, my friends. If you can read this, thank a teacher.