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New Every Morning
16 January 2007 @ 05:19 pm
Countries visited thus far....kind of humbling to see how many there are left to go.....

Get your own Visited Countries Map from Travel Blog
New Every Morning
07 November 2006 @ 07:41 pm
Really? Hmmmm.....

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland

"You have a Midland accent" is just another way of saying "you don't have an accent." You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.

The West
The South
North Central
The Inland North
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Take More Quizzes
New Every Morning
26 October 2006 @ 09:23 am
....I shall write about New York. Really. :-)
I'm only putting this commitment here so that MAYBE I won't back out of it. Exactly a week ago, I was sitting in the Jax airport waiting to board....
Current Mood: blahblah
New Every Morning
23 October 2006 @ 10:00 pm
New Every Morning
17 October 2006 @ 09:38 pm
21 minutes left to work.....

Tonight I spent quite a bit of time helping an English major research the theme of revenge in Hamlet, Richard III, and Romeo and Juliet. There's some irony here because I really didn't have much of a clue about all of this stuff when I was in her place...an English major trying to come up with something to say that was both insightful and backed up by some sort of research. And I was too embarrassed to tell anyone I was clueless about using the Library, especially considering that I worked there as a Reference Assistant and planned to get my Masters in Library Science. Ha. I've always been afraid to admit the things I don't know--as if the world will collectively gasp and turn their heads to face me, horror written on their faces. I don't know when, where, or why I developed this phobia of being "found out", but good grief, it's time to get over it.

Said English major and I had a good talk about not quite fitting in with the rest of the English majors. We both agreed that we aren't passionate about symbolism and interpretation unless it actually connects to us and/or the real world in some meaningful way. We don't like to discuss hypotheticals. We like the stories and the language and the beauty and the history behind it all. And we don't like the academic elitism/ivory tower stuff. Yuck. It was a good talk--I like when I cross paths with someone who is a few years behind me and I get to go back and redeem some of the struggles I had in an earlier time....sort of vicarious redemption.

Tomorrow is Wednesday, which means I have a million and one things to do, but also that LOST is on....Hurrah!

Note to self: Think of something more interesting to write about in your blog....maybe the Giant Mutant Crab story.....

Oh, and quote for the day:

"There is a kind of happiness and wonder that makes you serious. It is too good to waste on jokes." C.S. Lewis
Current Mood: workingworking
New Every Morning
16 October 2006 @ 07:47 pm
Here are my goals for my upcoming NY trip:

1. See May and laugh a lot. Shouldn't be a problem.

2. Visit the main branch of the New York Public Library and take a picture of Patience and Fortitude.

3. Visit the Children's Reading Room at the Donnell Library Center and see THE Winnie the Pooh and his friends. This will be a very spiritual experience for me as I believe the Pooh stories are both beautiful and wise beyond words. This will be my 2nd Pooh Pilgrimage, the first being my 2000 trip to the Hundred Acre Wood in England. The only subject I've ever thought I might consider getting a doctorate in is British Children's Literature. And, oh my goodness, I just noticed that they also have MARY POPPINS' UMBRELLA. But I'm getting sidetracked....

4. Eat something authentically New York, like a big hot dog or a bagel or something. What's the most authentically New York food? May?

5. Spend a few hours at the Met. I've wanted to go there since reading From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler about 20 years ago. This exhibit is looking really good to me, too....

6. Wander Central Park. Stop by Strawberry Fields. I've also made some Beatles pilgrimages (on the official Yellow Submarine Beatles Tour (!!!) in Liverpool, and then to Abbey Road in London), so can't miss this one.

7. Ride the Staten Island Ferry. See the Statue. Is it open? Doesn't matter, I just want to see it.

8. Ride the subway.

9. Worship with the Manhattan Church of Christ on Sunday morning.

10. Buy some cheapo souvenirs.

11. Send some postcards.

12. People watch.

I think that's it for now....probably more than enough to keep me busy for about 3 1/2 days.
Current Mood: excitedexcited
New Every Morning
15 October 2006 @ 09:14 pm
Go me.
Just wanted to post this link to an entry on my favorite message board--thought this was so good and so important to remember....
On Doing Things Badly
New Every Morning
15 October 2006 @ 08:09 pm
Yes, this is my 3rd LJ entry in 2 days. I don't think the world is coming to an end, but maybe.

On Thursday, I turn THIRTY YEARS OLD. Each time I say it, a little tremor of disbelief runs up my spine, and seeing it typed just above makes my head tilt to the side and my eyes go buggy.

I'm not dreading it at all--I'm a little excited. Partly because I'll be in Manhattan visiting one of my favorite people on that fateful day, but mostly because I think I'm getting better with age. And by "better", I mean calmer, more confident, more focused, more....other stuff. More stable in the head, I guess. And that feels good.

Of course I have my moments when I'm anything but stable....but overall, my lifeline is making a gradual but unmistakable journey upward.

This has been a strange year in my life...I'd like to write more about that in the weeks ahead, if for no other reason than to help me process it all. I decided, after 4 years working at my alma mater, to take a job much MUCH closer to "home" and family. Although I'd spent hour after hour considering moving, it was always a vague sort of concept....I had no idea where to go or what to do when I got there. Then all of the sudden I saw a job ad that perked my interest and thought, "That's it. I'm going to get that job."

And I did.

And then 3 weeks later I was heading south with all my worldly possessions.

Well, it wasn't quite that simple...there was a little (okay, a lot) of drama mixed in there, too....but I'll get to that some other day.

I promised myself, pre-move, that I wouldn't even consider whether I'd made the right decision or not until 6 months into my new life. Okay, I didn't QUITE live up to that promise, but I did okay. After 6 months, I pushed it up to a year, and now after the first year I just don't want to consider whether I did the right thing or not. I did something. Some of it has been good, some of it not so much. Definitely more good than bad...far more.
And I know I'm where I'm supposed to be for now. Who knows what tomorrow will bring...but for now, I'm enjoying this time.

Well, I don't know that this entry said much of anything at all...but more to come.....

I'll end this day with a Psalm...one of the ones that just makes you want to lift your eyes to heaven and open your arms wide to all that you know is there, even if you only get a fleeting glimpse every once in a while....

Psalms 116:1-9

"I love the LORD because he hears and answers my prayers. Because he bends down and listens, I will pray as long as I have breath! Death had its hands around my throat; the terrors of the grave overtook me. I saw only trouble and sorrow. Then I called on the name of the LORD: "Please, LORD, save me!" How kind the LORD is! How good he is! So merciful, this God of ours! The LORD protects those of childlike faith; I was facing death, and then he saved me. Now I can rest again, for the LORD has been so good to me. He has saved me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. And so I walk in the LORD's presence as I live here on earth!"
Current Mood: satisfiedsatisfied
Current Music: the pitter patter of college-student feet in the Library
New Every Morning
14 October 2006 @ 04:12 pm
Going here tonight.....
Dukes of Dixieland
New Every Morning
14 October 2006 @ 11:15 am
Think of Rodney Dangerfield. Mix in a little Elmer Fudd. Healthy dose of Sophia Petrillo. A touch of Babe Ruth.

Hard to picture? Yep, so is my Uncle Eddie.

Except for a bit of a resemblance to Uncle Larry, my mom's little brother, you'd never peg him for a member of our family. He never meets a stranger--most of my family is so reserved we consider people we've known for years to be strangers. You can hear his voice clearly within a 2-block radius....my Mom is still kidded for the time when as a 5-year old at the family dinner table she yelled, "Will you please pass the potatos???" after having said it in her normal voice 4 times without anyone noticing.

Uncle Eddie is my grandfather's little brother. Pa, who was 19 years older than Eddie, was in the Navy when his only brother was born. Their dad was a deadbeat (my cousins and I are convinced he was a member of the New York mafia), and Pa was responsible, serious, and generous. He was Uncle Eddie's father figure, although there were very few years when they lived near each other.

When Eddie grew up he joined the Navy and stayed with them for his career. From time to time he'd show up in Florida for a holiday visit--when word would get around to the family that he was coming, we all had the same reaction. "Uncle Eddie's coming....brace yourself." All of us introverts would spend the next few days in a fog, mentally trying to keep up with Uncle Eddie's unceasing commentary on the Navy, New York, Bea (his wife), Florida weather, Southern food, Jewish food, football, travel, and anything else that crossed his mind.

He retired in Whidbey Island, WA, with Bea, and took up school bus driving. When Bea passed away, he stayed on in Washington, hanging out with his buddies from the Lions Club.

He came to visit us last Thanksgiving for the first time since Pa passed away in 1999. As I walked toward Granny's house Thanksgiving morning, I was taken aback by Uncle Eddie's voice coming through the screen door...it sounded just like Pa. Funny how you forget the familiar sound of someone's voice after a few years. Uncle Eddie took it upon himself over the next few days to wait on Granny hand and foot...and to berate the rest of us for not doing a good enough job caring for her. When my tire got a leak, he climbed into my passenger seat, directed me to Wal-Mart, and then harrassed the entire automotive department until the problem had been fixed. We went along with it all, knowing that his pestering and haranguing made him feel good...sort of his way of taking care of the family Pa left behind.
And it made us feel good, too--knowing Uncle Eddie loved us all, in his rough, unpolished sort of way. I think we all were reminded of how much we missed Pa and all of his quirky ways. It drew us together....he was crazy, Uncle Eddie was, but he was ours.

A few months after the Thanksgiving visit, Uncle Eddie was diagnosed with lung cancer. His treatments went well, and he made the decision to leave Washington when his doctors okayed it and travel south to be closer to family. He'd been living in an RV (think About Schmidt) and was planning to stop at state parks between Washington and Florida, staying up to 10 days at a time for free (since he's a vet), making it here for Thanksgiving.

A couple of weeks ago, we found out that the doctors found several spots on Uncle Eddie's brain. Uncle Eddie seems to have no concerns about making it through this--he knows he'll beat it. I hope he's right--I'm not ready to give him up yet. We want him here, with family, driving us all crazy, but now is not the time to travel. So we're praying for him, as we have for years--praying that his body will be healed, but praying mostly that he'll find the faith that the rest of our family has. My grandfather came to faith in his 40s and never stopped telling his little brother about the hope he had found--but Uncle Eddie was always too self sufficient, too good at making his own way in the world. Will things be different now that he's facing such an uphill climb? I hope so.

Mostly, I just thank God for giving my family someone like Uncle Eddie to test our boundaries a bit. To spice things up. And I pray that the Father will draw us all close to Him....that we'll rest in the palm of His hand and work out His will for our lives, glorifying Him and loving each other.