Stray Thoughts Sunday, Uncategorized

Stray Thoughts Sunday

Stray Thought Sundays

How is it Sunday night already?  Seriously.  I feel like it was just Thursday and although we’ve done a million things since then, I still feel like I’ve lost a day somewhere in there.

Grades are due today.  As usual, I am pushing it to the end of the line, literally.  Grading is the worst part of my job by far and the end-of-term grades are the worst of the worst.  Some students work so hard and have very little to show for it.  Others have hardly worked at all and still come out okay.  And it is hard as an instructor to not want to show that in some way.  But, all we get is a letter grade.  A single letter.  No comments.  No real way of showing what’s been done.  But, it is what it is and I have to enter them and let it be.  I get very few complaints about grades, so I feel like I’m pretty fair (other instructors complain about their students complaining and groveling all the time, but I don’t really get much of that), but it still isn’t pleasant.  And it seems so permanent.  It is a psychological thing.  But, once it is done…it is summer!  🙂

Regina Brett Summer Quote

Wordless Wednesday

(almost) Wordless Wednesday

Last Daisy meeting of the school year. She gets to add the middle of her Daisy and one petal because she memorized the Girl Scout promise and showed friendship by making a necklace and saying something nice about another Daisy. 🙂



We went for a drive to Burney Falls and this is the view overlooking the Valley on the way. It was gorgeous – a green spot in California!


On the trail to the bottom of Burney Falls.
And the beautiful falls themselves! It was breathtaking!
We went to the Silver Dollar Fair and Bean had her first pony ride. If you can’t tell, she had a GREAT time!
And she brought home quite the haul – three goldfish (they are still alive amazingly), a purple unicorn, a small stingray (we petted them at a mobile tank they had at the fair and Bean loved it), and a dolphin!
There may be more than one magical creature in this photo…what do you think?
If only she would grade my papers instead of sleeping on them.


Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday – Rise


Well, I can’t believe another Friday is here already.  I feel like I always have about half my week missing when a week finishes.  Guess I should do something about that…  Today’s prompt is “rise”.  So, here goes:

The first thing I thought about when reading the prompt was “He has risen.” and I went and checked the date to make sure this wasn’t an old prompt from Easter time.  🙂  But, no, it isn’t.  So, that got be thinking about resurrection and rebirth and clean starts.  This has been a really rough time in my life.  And I can’t even really define when it started.  I think it started when my DD came along and it has just been kind of a roller coaster ride since then.  Well, more than a roller coaster ride, a visit to an amusement park.  Sometimes I feel like I’m on one of those relaxing, slow-moving rides that have a lot to see that is beautiful or fun, but not a lot of excitement.  Those rides are nice after long days of walking and standing in lines and doing roller coasters.  Sometimes I feel like I’m in the House of Horrors and although all is dark and quiet for a bit, I know there is always something around the corner that needs to be anticipated.  But, even with that knowledge, you’re still scared to death when the thing actually jumps out at you.  Nothing can prepare you…even riding the ride over and over, you still have that sense of dread and shock.  Sometimes I feel like I’m on a roller coaster and there is good excitement and terrifying, heart-in-your-throat excitement and I want to get off in the middle, but your stuck there until the end.  So, I guess rise for me right now is all about rising above this “stuff” that keeps me trapped in the amusement park rides that I don’t want to be on anymore.  I want to rise above it and rest.

So, at some point, I have to make that choice to rise up and have a clean start.  One that may still include an amusement park ride here and there, but is more livable in between.  I’ve been functioning in a space of stress and dread and fear for too long.  So, today, I’ll rise up and leave the amusement park!

How about you?  Join Five Minute Friday writing over at Kate Montaug!

Tuesday Truth

Tuesday Truth

tuesday truth

Well, today’s primary Tuesday Truths are all about sickness and hospitals.

First, it sucks to be sick.  I have some thing going on with my throat that has caused laryngitis and coughing and just misery in general.  Coughing makes me tired and relatively sleepless and laryngitis makes it difficult to teach and talk on the phone or talk to people in your house.  Basically, anything.  So, yeah – that’s where that’s at.  Hopefully my voice will soon return to full strength and this cough takes a hike.

Second, hospitals are exhausting.  I spent all day yesterday in the hospital for my DD’s annual heart biopsy.  She did relatively well, but it is still a long, long day.  We arrived at 7:30 a.m. and didn’t leave until 3:30 p.m. and in between we dealt with pre-op upset, post-op upset and just general frustration on hers and our part.  Trying to keep a six year old laying completely flat for four hours is a bit ridiculous if you ask me, but it is what they want us to do to keep her from bleeding at the access sites.  And she gets super frustrated and we get super frustrated and at some point, I just kind of give up and hope for the best.  Everything went okay.  The sites look fine today.  So, I think we did a good enough job.  Her rejection level was 1A which is a bit of a disappointment after the last few zeroes, but the NP says that is basically the same as a zero (which is obviously not true or they wouldn’t have a zero and a 1A), but we’ll take it.  It means no steroid treatment or change in meds.  So, we’re good.  Everything else looked good as well.  So, hopefully another year before we have to go through that again.

Third, having a sick, aging parent on hospice sucks.  My mom was here all weekend and she was considerably weaker than the prior weekend (just four days later).  And since she went home on Sunday she has gotten progressively worse.  Yesterday she didn’t really get out of bed.  My sister went down there today and says she is not making a lot of sense and seems very disoriented.  She is weak and now they want to get her a hospital bed.  Her caregiver seems to be a little low on the caregiving department since she says she can’t help her get into bed, which I was able to do this weekend.  So, now we may have to look for someone else OR we just need to convince my mom to go into assisted living, which she will hate, but which will probably be good for her.  I’m exhausted after taking care of her the last two weekends not because of having to help her move around, but more because of her emotional state.  I was also getting sick, so I didn’t feel good this weekend, and I think it all caught up to me this week.  Hence, my loss of voice.

So, that’s it – my Tuesday Truths.  Not much positive here, I know.  Its been a rough weekend.  And it has continued into the week.  But, I’m hoping things start to look up.  Maybe my voice will come back, hopefully this weekend will be without a hospital visit AND my mom will get what she needs and be more comfortable.  And, I hope to get some sleep.  And, get some grading done.  And, finish cleaning/organizing my house.  And, go to the fair.  And, read some books.  And, just R-E-L-A-X.  Yeah, right.  What about you?  What’s your Tuesday Truth?

Six Word Saturday

Six Word Saturday

Quality or quantity of life – choice?

My mom is with us again this weekend.  She is having a much worse weekend than last weekend, and that makes things hard.  Both hers and my dad’s older age have not been much in the area of quality and it makes me wonder.  If we had a choice or if there IS a choice.  I mean, I realize that my mom’s cancer wasn’t a choice.  But, her pursuing treatment after treatment over the years, even with very little promise of positive outcome was her choice.  And she did it.  She suffered horrible side effects, painful surgeries, loss of body parts…more than once.  And so she is here with us, but at what cost?

My dad hung on for quite a while through his dementia.  He would NOT have wanted to live the last year of his life the way he did.  He probably would have chosen to end it earlier than that, given a choice.  But, he was not.

There is now a bill moving through the California legislature providing for legal assisted suicide.  I support it.  I think that in our society, we focus too much on quantity of life and not enough on quality of life.  That is true always, not just for those with terminal illness, but it is especially true for those with terminal illness.

No one know the amount of pain and suffering that one will have to go through to make it to the end, but although I support the legislation, I also don’t know if I could ever make that choice for myself.  With my mom, there have been good intervening years that she may have missed given some of her early prognosis.  So, who knows what will happen?  Medical advances are being made all the time.  But, I do think that for older individuals who are satisfied with their lives and are given a prognosis of pain and suffering, whether long or short, this option is a good one to have available.


Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday – Follow


Participating in another Five Minute Friday this week over at Kate Montaung.  Join in if you’d like.  This week’s prompt is “follow”.

Follow – the word has taken on a whole new meaning in the world of Facebook!  But, following is something I often do.  I am a follower on social media.  I like to support people and following is a way of supporting them.  This is true in real life as well.  A follower is someone who shows up when you ask them to.  They are someone who knows your story and “follows” along, offering help or congratulations or celebratory messages when appropriate.  I have friends I don’t follow – and I’m often shocked by what has happened in their lives because it seems to come out of the blue.  But, in reality, if I were really “following” them, I would know why it happened.

Following in the real world gets a bad name sometimes.  We speak of leaders always.  But, leaders don’t exist without followers.  And sometimes the followers are really the power in the relationship, because without them, the leader would have no one to lead and therefore would not exist as a leader.  Some leaders get this, but others don’t really respect their followers as being powerful members in a relationship.  It is important to remember this for all leaders.  It is also important for followers to remember that they have power and choice.  They do not need to blindly follow, but should follow based on principle and relationship and respect.  Too many followers follow without question, without critical thinking and without really knowing where its going to get them.

Finally, following requires some dedication and commitment.  If we “follow” a sports team, than we know what is going on with them.  Perhaps we need to start investing that same energy into “following” our friends and family.

Time’s up!

That’s it – today’s Five Minute Friday post.  Check out some others over at the Five Minute Friday Linkup!