Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Mothers Against Las Brisas Demonstrations Sundays at 8pm

Do you want a coal-burning petroleum coke plant that will create, by itself, over 70% more pollution than all of the existing refineries in our city put together?

Do you want a coal-burning petroleum coke plant that refuses to use available gasification technology to reduce pollution and protect the health of our children because it will cost them too much?

If the kind of jobs and companies that will make our children sick are not the kind you want for Corpus Christi, then say no to Las Brisas! A better future is possible!

Join the peaceful weekly protests against Las Brisas to be held every Sunday evening at 8pm on the public sidewalk by SPID in front of restaurant row – bring signs and allies.

We are mothers and we are charged with keeping our children safe. We’ll speak out to our city council members and state and federal representatives and stand vigil until they take action to keep our city safe for our children.

Let’s get to work!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Swimming Girl

The Lone Star Girl went back to swim practice for the first time tonight. Lone Star Pa took her while I took her sister to story time. Word is she did great - even swam fly. She was really proud of herself but really sad that she missed all the meets while she was convalescing.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

He Loves You

Today (when I was not helping the Lone Star Baby send off for caterpillars to raise into butterflies or ride her new bike and when I was not taking the Lone Star Girl for a walk and when I was not taking both kids out for ice cream/frozen yogurt and when I was not playing board games with them) I cleaned the kitchen and the bathroom, swept the house, cooked a nice dinner, made brownies ... I even separated out the particular type of flatware that my husband prefers into its own special compartment in the drawer like he always asks, a request that the Lone Star Girl and I tend to meet with amusement, but not compliance. Lone Star Pa and the Lone Star Girl think I have been replaced by a skrull.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Buffy Brain Battle Begins

Rather than all those cool, enriching Wild Woman Summer Enrichment Program For Gifted Girls things I had planned for the summer, the Lone Star Girl has, in her convalescence, mainly been sitting around watching the first and second seasons of Buffy, to which she has become mildly (ha) addicted.

Today was her follow-up appointment with the surgeon and he said she should be fine to do anything she wants and he doesn't think we need another appointment (unless she vomits green stuff, in which case he wants to see us stat, but he doesn't think that will happen).


That said, she doesn't quite feel up to the swim team yet. She is not actually at the two-week mark until Tuesday - he scheduled us early because he's going out of town, and she really is sort of easily tired still. So I will probably still be a little on the hovering side until Tuesday but, if all goes as well as it has been, she should be getting back to her normal routine very soon.

And it is time for her to start getting her groove back. Which means that I must mount an attack against Buffy Brain. Wish me luck.

Quiet Council

Last week I e-mailed the Mayor, my District Two Council member and the at-large Council members except Mark Scott, who obviously doesn't and won't care, about my concerns about Las Brisas. Brent Chesney is the only one who responded at all. While I was not very pleased with his non-commital response, it is nice that he at least pays some attention to the concerns of his constituents.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Canned Peaches

The Lone Star Baby has discovered a fondness for canned peaches at Vacation Bible School. Still doesn't want the fresh ones. So I bought some canned ones. Whatever works.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lone Star Ma Mama Action Alert: Call Your Congressperson About The Energy Bill Today

Please tell them to oppose amendments that weaken clean air standards and to insist upon deeper emissions cuts - at least 25-40% below 1990 levels. Millions of kids with asthma and allergies are counting on you.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Preschooler/Primary Pick: Elsie Piddock Skips In Her Sleep

I learned about the classic book Elsie Piddock Skips In Her Sleep by Eleanor Farjeon only very recently on the blog, Saints And Spinners. It is an excellent story about Elsie Piddock, a born skipper (jump-roper), beloved of faeries, who skips as never so. Elsie has an amazing childhood and then fades into adulthood as we all must, I suppose. When the skipping hill of the town of her birth is threatened by a greedy new lord, however, there may be an old woman who can skip the trouble clean away. This is a moving and complex and sweet story - truly lovely. I think it belongs in everyone's library.

Happy Father's Day!

To all the loving daddies out there, I say have a great day - you deserve it! Especially Lone Star Pa - even though he didn't help me get the Lone Star Girl to drink her prune juice...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Something Is Not Right

Well, I had scheduled a couple of posts of book reviews already in queue for the blog this week and one posted yesterday and one will tomorrow or sometime this week, but only because they were already set up to post - I was way too busy to post book reviews yesterday.

The girls were having a "sleepover" in the LSB's room on Monday night, but the LSG started to feel a little queasy at around 10:30pm, after her sister was already asleep, and went back to sleep in her own bed. Nausea at this time of the month is typical for her, so we didn't think too much about it.

I woke in the wee hours when she was went back and forth to the bathroom to throw up a couple of times and went to check on her. She started telling me sometime before 4am that she had been having a pain in her abdomen that wasn't crampy at all but sort of stationary, right in the middle and that it had been unchanged for a few hours. I started worrying about appendicitis but thought that you were supposed to have a pain in your side for that. I started looking stuff up on the computer and found that appendicitis pain usually starts in the middle where she was having it and eventually moves to the right side - uh oh. We started having the do-you-think-you-need-to-go-to-the-emergency-room conversation and by 4:30am, she said she needed to. When she stood to get dressed, the pain moved to the right side and I started to really worry that it was appendicitis.

The LSG and I went to the emergency room and Tom called in sick at work and kept the LSB until we knew what was going to happen. They did bloodwork, etc. and a CT scan and x-rays. I was holding out hope for an ovarian cyst but they thought it probably was appendicitis. And it was. The inflamed appendix showed up on the CT scan. I made a lot of scrambly phone calls and a friend from Meeting took the Lone Star Baby so that Tom could get to the hospital just barely before she went in for surgery in the morning. The surgery took almost no time and the surgeon came out and said she did fine and it wasn't ruptured and they were able to do it laparoscopically so the recovery should be much better. We stayed at the hospital throughout the day and the surgeon saw us in the evening and said that he thought she was better off healing at home, given the sorts of things that one finds in hospitals, so we were discharged late last night.

She's doing great, but feels very crummy as you can imagine. Please keep her in your prayers. Thank you.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

June YA/Upper El Picks

June's YA pick is Kendra, written by Coe Booth, authour of Tyrell. Like Tyrell, Kendra is definitely not for the upper elementary set due to graphic sex and upsetting violence. It is, however, an excellent teen book. Kendra's mother gave birth to her as a teen and left Kendra's upbringing up to her own mother while she went on to pursue her education and get out of the projects. Kendra always assumed that when her mother finally finished getting all of her degrees, they would live together, but when the time comes, Kendra's mother isn't ready. This rejection awakens so much hurt in Kendra that she begins making very dangerous choices and getting into serious trouble. Eventually, she has to learn to find her support in pieces, among many different family members and friends, instead of expecting any one adult to be what she needs. Most of all, she has to learn to be there for herself. Another excellent book - I plan to be reading everything that Coe Booth ever writes.

For upper elementary readers and up, I also really enjoyed A String In The Harp, an old timeslip story by Nancy Bond. The Morgan children have lost their mother and their father isn't coping all that well. When he moves the family from the U.S. to a tiny Welsh village, he immerses himself in his work and leaves them to manage their feelings alone. Peter, the middle child, finds an ancient harp key that plunges him into the story of Taliessin. Together, the Morgans learn the importance of trusting and supporting each other.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Happy Birthday, Lone Star Baby!

Is it even possible that my baby could be five? I mean, I am a strong believer in more genuinely neurological milestones like three and seven and all, but ... five just seems so old! And she doesn't! She is just a baby! Honest!

Her favorite present of all is the skipping rope her sister gave her. She loves it. She's all Elsie Piddock about it. And also, there's the bike...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Happy Birthday, Lone Star Pa!

The dude is forty and he barely looks a day older than when I met him in college. So not fair.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The Wild Woman Summer Enrichment Program For Gifted Girls

Taking place in my house and surrounding environs! Featuring my gifted girls! Yes, I have a plan for the summer!

The teen program includes:

Reading assignments (for the next two weeks, the Old Testament)
Swim team
Teaching in Sissy School
Sewing lessons (not by me, you sillies - at the Singer store)
Learning a bit about cooking and laundry
Beach time (we'll call it science).

The kinder program includes:

The summer reading club - story times and craft times
Lots of reading practice
Practice counting to 100
Practice identifying and writing all letters of alphabet (why is it easier to read than to do this?)
Practice identifying and writing numbers to 20
Swim lessons
Ballet lessons
Learning in Sissy School
Vacation Bible School
Beach time (science).

We have begun!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Old Post, New Column

My new column is up at We the People News. Based on a post from here. Please read it! Thanks.

Conversation With A Child Who Always Kicks The Covers Off

Me: How come you never want me to hold your hand?

LSB: Because I always want to feel the coldness on it. Because I'm always hot.

Summer Eye

The Lone Star Baby's been sporting a nasty black eye since she hit it on a bedpost on Tuesday afternoon. She was trying to run away from Lone Star Pa who was trying to collect her from the house of the friend who was minding her for us Tuesday and Wednesday. She has this not-so-cute game in which she always runs, giggling and squealing, to hide whenever anyone comes to the door - sadly without a great deal of attention to where she's running at times. I really hope it goes away before her birthday on Thursday but I don't think it's going to - sigh. I don't remember bruises lasting this long before. She has also been quite grounchy these past few days. She usually loves "home days" but I think the excitement of her upcoming birthday combined with the lack of routine has been a little overwhelming. We have a wild week of fun ahead of us, so we'll see what happens!

Saturday, June 06, 2009


A new baby guinea pig for us! We couldn't resist - she is so cute. Now, we are a three guinea pig and two mouse family...

Friday, June 05, 2009

I REALLY Heart Alice Cooper


Today is the first day of it for all of us together!

Some updates:

Lone Star Pa's last day of teaching for the school year was Friday which was also the Lone Star Baby's last day of school, and he had a workday on Saturday (weird thing his little district does). Monday, he watched the Lone Star Baby. What with the car and all, he is teaching summer school this summer and he had his first day on Tuesday and first day teaching on Wednesday. A friend from our Meeting watched the Lone Star Baby those two days, much to the Lone Star Baby's delight. Wednesday was the Lone Star Girl's last day of school and my last day that involved teaching the kids, so Thursday, the Lone Star Girl watched her sister while I had a workday at school. (They had Sissy School - very sweet.)

In the midst of all that, I have been speeding around like crazy - getting ready for the end of the school year, getting ready for the Lone Star Baby's upcoming birthday, making calls about summer activities for the girls, dealing with the beginning of swim practices for the Lone Star Girl and her first meet last Saturday and other big things that have been happening and - well, it's just been been more on the frantic side of our hectic-to-frantic continuum. Very much so.

And today, today - we are all off! Because Lone Star Pa's summer school is only M-Th and only mornings. Whew! And yay! Life is good...

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Instructions to The City Council On Using Their Authority

About a week ago yesterday, I ran into a City Council member leaving the grocery store.

Me: "Mr. --, please don't let them build that coal-burning pet. coke plant here without gasification - please. My kid has asthma. It will create over 70% more pollution than all the refineries we have now create put together. She needs cleaner air and to be able to breathe. Please."

Him: "Um, do you know how we could stop it? I just don't see how we could stop it - I mean, other than annexing the land."

Me: "Well, you could not give them the industrial tax district. Or you could annex the land."

Him: "Okay - that may be something. Mostly I just don't see that we have the authority to stop it."

(His wife pulls up in a big truck, smiles at me in a tight and fierce way, as if reminding me that she will have her hands in my mouth soon at the dentist's office. He starts to move toward the truck.)

Me: "There's the industrial tax district. And the water!"

Him: "Well, yeah. I guess if we didn't give them the water..." (and he's gone.)

I wish I had thought quickly enough to also suggest passing emissions caps for businesses operating in the city. Or a ban on any new coal-burning plants that don't use gasification - there are, of course, any number of things that they can do.

Monday, June 01, 2009

R.I.P. Dr. Tiller

Murdered by Christian fundamentalist terrorists. No more truly Christians are they than are the people who are called Islamic fundamentalist terrorists truly Muslims. There is no God in any form of fundamentalism - only evil and terror. Lucifer's sin was hubris as is theirs. It is always hubris, always...