Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Lightening the Load

I have just deleted more than 4,000 emails from my Inbox and Sent folders.

I feel 4,000 pieces of paper lighter, if that makes any kind of sense...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Love Chicken

Today, we have a guest blogger. You may know her from such posts as, "Early Morning Quiz" , "Finally! Some Pictures!! , and "Forty Stone and Six Months Ago". OC is here to write about her chickens. Pictures by OC.

My chicken Cleopatra loves shiny things!
Her head is in the way because she is trying to peck the camera when it flashes!

Hatshepsut is afraid to lay an egg in the picture because I'm taking a photo of her!

She is crabby because she wants to be a mom but we don't have a rooster anymore.

I put two eggs in the grass to make it look like a chicken laid two eggs there!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Smith Rock Is Near Here

To start our spring break vacation, we went to Smith Rock for a hike.

I am a native Oregonian, but for years I did not know where Smith Rock was located. I'm not a rock climber, so that helps explain my ignorance. Now that I live in Redmond, I have noticed how Smith Rock seems to be everywhere. During the drive from Bend, you can see the rock pretty much the entire way. It's as though it were watching your every move...

In my defense, I did know some other things about Oregon. Such as, the girls grow tall here.

Also, it may be spring but it's still the desert. It is COLD in March.*

Amazingly, these limby Oregon creatures can fold themselves in order to explore "huts" along the trail. There were many huts. We did not go inside every one, but almost.

The footbridge back at the start of the hike looks like the trunk of a tree, when viewed from above. If you can manage it, the views are worth the climb. The river trail is flat and follows the river, coincidentally. There are other options, such as Misery Ridge and Burma Road. We took Misery Ridge, which meets up with the River Trail and makes for a decent 3-mile loop.

Spring break is not a good time to hike at Smith Rock if you are craving solitude. Dude, there were like, all kinds of people there and like, you know, youths or whatever. Most were good about watching their language around my kid, but boy did I feel like a grandma, being concerned about hearing a swear word or forty.

* That is okay with me. I am a knitter and have coping skills.

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Simpsons

Ned: Jeepers H. Crackers. I'd better call the Reverend.

[pushes "Rev. Lovejoy" button on phone]
[the Rev is playing with a train set]

Mrs. L: Heh heh, Ned Flanders is on the phone.

Reverend Lovejoy: [groans] Mmm...hello, Ned.

Ned: [breathless] Reverend...emergency! I -- it's the Simpson kids -- eedily -- I, uh, baptism -- oodily -- uh -- doodily doodily!

Reverend Lovejoy: Ned...have you thought about one of the other major religions? They're all pretty much the same.

[hangs up]
[his train crashes]

Oh. Damn Flanders!

----- Season 7, episode "Home Sweet Home-Diddily-Dum-Doodily"

Friday, March 19, 2010

Welcome to Finals Week, and oh yes, the Ides of March.

So, what are the Ides of March, and why do I need to beware? The Ides were simply calendar days (or, nights) on the Roman calendar when there was a full moon. It was a moveable date that happened every month. The need to beware of the Ides of March was attributed to the vision of a soothsayer in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, who felt the day was unlucky for one Gaius Julius Caesar of Rome.

March 15, 44 BCE: Julius Caesar is assassinated by fellow Senators, including buddies Brutus and Cassius. Poor guy, after all he had done for the Republic.

One perk to being the leader of Rome included issuing coins that carried your visage. In the fifth century B.C. (or possibly earlier) bronze began to be used in central Italy as a medium of exchange valued by weight. In the second century an annually elected board of three were tasked with the casting and striking of bronze, silver, and gold, created to control the issuance of the currency.

Under Augustus the mints and the entire monetary system were reorganized so that the emperor issued the gold and silver coinage, while the bronze was left to the senate to issue. Under this system, the money changed virtually every year. Sort of makes you glad that quarter, dime, nickel, penny situation need not be relearned every year.

In other words, coins were ancient Rome's People magazine.

----- directly quoted and/or paraphrased from Roman Civilization Volume I, Selected Readings: The Republic and the Augustan Age, Ed. Lewis and Reinhold 3rd edition (my textbook from HST414 which, of course, I kept).

Speaking of holidays, did you know St. Patrick was not Irish? It's always a school day around here.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


LAST NIGHT: A five-minute presentation, in French, with pictures. At least there were cookies.

THIS MORNING: Cat poop smooshed under the back door. No cookies.



Thursday, March 04, 2010


Do you remember the Gravitron at OMSI? I loved that thing. It was a tall, rectangular space enclosed in glass that housed steel framed track that looked like a miniature roller coaster, where silver balls would travel. There were numerous different tracks, and little kids like me fascinated, watching the balls travel this way and that, going one way and then all of a sudden going another, with all of the twists and turns, the steel arms that would flip over and pick up a ball to take it to another track and then rest to wait for the next; the wheels that looked like miniature ferris wheels with spaces for the balls and when it was full it finally overturned the balls onto tracks to keep falling, down, down, down. When they got to the end, there was an elevator that brought the balls back to the top and it would do it all over again.

I was reading Dooce this morning and she featured this video. She's right, it is absolutely amazing. It is better than the Gravitron, and now you know how big that is.