Monday, September 28, 2009

Cloudy 38

There are some beautiful clouds flying across the moon and some planet (Jupiter? Saturn?) tonight.

Yesterday, I took the Lone Star Baby to see Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs (the LSG already saw it with friends last weekend - presumably). It was nothing like the book but we still enjoyed the movie a lot. It was only the second movie she has seen in theaters and it was a little intense and scary for her towards the end (she's sensitive), but she says she still really enjoyed it. It was a fun outing.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Autumn is Here

September has just seemed like summer until this week, but now October is almost here. I am very proud that we actually managed to get our little box of autumn/Halloween decorations scattered about today. This year, I mostly just showed the girls the box, gave them some tape and said go. They got most of it done on their own, which was quite nice to experience. They even helped with the outside stuff.

We also started to set up a little nature table, something I've been meaning to do for a long time. I bought a little green metal table with a gift card that my MIL gave me and Lone Star Pa screwed it together and we set it in a sort of corner in the living room. I say a sort of corner because the corner is actually formed, not by the room, but by Lone Star Pa's jumble of living room clutter - boxes of videotapes, DVDs and various incomprehensible wires that I cannot convince him not to stretch across my could-be-pretty seafoam green walls. Decorating really seems like a silly past-time around here in a way since there is no hope that anything but the clutter and wires will really be noticed by visitors, but...we notice the decorating. The kids like it, and that matters, I think. The way it makes them happy makes me happy and I think that matters, too. So...I just set up the nature table right in front of the corner of clutter - maybe it will balance it out somehow.

More on what we are placing on the nature table later, but I think having it to add seasonal items to will help me feel less guilt about never getting around to doing as many nice, seasonal crafts and things as I wish to do with the kids. I do, however, have a plastic jack-o-lantern bucket full of orange and black construction paper strips and scraps at the ready. We'll get in a little bit of craftiness, I think.

And books! I got out the autumn books, too!

Happy Autumn!

Lone Star Ma

The Lone Star Baby is in that too-old-to-say-mama-or-mommy phase, but she isn't calling me Mom like her sister does and as I expected she would. She calls me Ma.

I love it.

Mayor Doesn't Want To Hear From Doctors

Someone I know stopped to talk to the Mayor after Mass today and asked him if the Council was going to listen to a presentation from local physicians on the health risks that Las Brisas would bring. He said no - they were just going to go with the process and see what happened at the contested TCEQ hearing. Since TCEQ has never (ever) not permitted any plant in Texas, regardless of how egregrious their violations, and since the mayor knows that, this basically means that the mayor also does not care what health problems Las Brisas will cause - he's not going to raise a hand against it, or even listen to balanced information.

Such leadership.

I would like to point out something to all these Council members with children and grandchildren - Council members who clearly have been very lucky thus far because they would never consider this if their own children had respiratory ailments:

You know my child with the asthma and the serious allergies who I am so worried about but who you do not care what happens to when Las Brisas comes? She did not have asthma and her allergies were no worse than the stuff that most everyone down here has when she was little. She was a very healthy little girl. There was no sign when she was small that when adolescence hit, she would develop these conditions. It just came out of the blue one day, hand in hand with puberty. It was a big shock and it has been a very difficult adjustment. And it could happen to your little children and grandchildren who live here and in surrounding areas, too. It could happen to anyone. They could wake up one morning with these or worse respiratory conditions and you would be responsible for allowing Las Brisas to be here and it would make them very sick. Your babies. You think about it. Do.

Mothers & Others Against Las Brisas Demonstration Time Change

Creeping up to 6:30pm until 7:30 pm, Sunday nights, SPID between Everhart and Staples - still chasing that daylight!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Happy Banned Book Week!

There's a Banned Book Week event at Half-Price Books at 4pm today! Go listen to a reading of something that someone doesn't want you to be able to read. Just because you're subversive like that, you know?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Governor Hair Needs Some Perspective

Governor Hair....I mean, Governor Perry ... apparently came here for what is being called his "State of the State" address (I was busy working so we could afford health insurance and missed it). Word on the street is that he talked up the idea that Texas has been doing pretty well, y'all. He says we're in better shape than a bunch of the nation during these hard times.

Allow me to leave you with one small fact:
Texas leads the nation in the number of people without health insurance: over 25%.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Baby

The Lone Star Baby rescued a bottle cap from me the other day, saying
don't throw it away, I want to re-....

...and she stopped.

I could tell she had been about to say "recycle", but she thought for a second and instead said it for an art project!

I'm impressed.

Braces! Off!

I wanted to post s picture but no one has cooperated thus far. They came off Tuesday!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Happy International Day of Peace

“Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war."

- Maria Montessori

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Remembering the Cadamo

The Lone Star Baby still refers back to our San Antonio trip last spring every time she sees something that reminds her of the Alamo. She calls it the "Cadamo".

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Activity Grrrl & Activity Baby

Friday was our first Cadette Girl Scout meeting of the year and we had a wonderful minister and a wonderful firefighter come speak to the girls about their careers and what it was like to be women in careers that are rather male-dominated. My very deep fears about our tiny, ridiculously cluttered and often dirty house as the new meeting space are largely allayed. We have had to cancel three too-hastily scheduled sewing lessons because the Lone Star Girl was ill-ish twice and had tests coming at school and needed to study the other time. The Lone Star Girl found out that the theme of National History Day this year is Innovations and she wants to do her project on birth control. Don't think that's going to fly. She and Lone Star Pa volunteered at the Clean Economy Coalition fundraiser on Sunday night.

I had a Daisy Girl Scout troop parent planning meeting on Saturday morning and our first meeting is on 10-2. PJ Story time started up again last night and the Lone Star Baby and I had fun. This evening was her first soccer practice. Lone Star Pa is coaching again and it looks like everyone is going to have fun. I love being at the field in the evening as a remedy for the cooped-upness of my busy schooldays. Their team chose "Volcanoes" for a name since their uniforms are red and white this season. Very cute! I am sad that I will miss their first game on Saturday morning but I have to go to a training all day to be be the Daisy leader. We have reached the season of needing to be several places at once and I am not very good at being peaceful about when I have to miss things. Still, I am happy about how many fun things are in store with them!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Clean Economy Coalition Fundraiser Tonight!

Go dance at Moravian Hall for a good cause!

New Column!

We the People News is going to continue online, which makes me very happy. I will miss the print version, but am grateful that we still have it. My new column is up here. Please read it and let me know what you think. Thanks!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Poetry Published!

Another on! It's on the Today's Words section today and will move to the poemblog tomorrow. Please read it! Thanks!

September Pre-school/Primary Pick: Baby Boat

One spring when I was in college, my mother won a stay at a fancy (to us) New Orleans' hotel in a contest. She decided to take my sisters and I on a girls-only vacation to NOLA that spring break, with the thought that it might be the last time she and her three girls all got to go on a vacation together before I was off being a grown-up. It was a wonderful vacation,even though Jazz had chicken pox and we didn't realize she had it until we were already there. Her case wasn't very bad and she still had more fun than she would have had at home, although we probably exposed a lot of people, something I wasn't mature enough to feel guilty about at the time. Jazz also had her third birthday on that trip, her St. Paddy's Day birthday often falling during spring break.

Before we left, I went to the university book store to pick out a birthday present for Jazz and I found a truly enchanting picture book called Baby Boat by Betty Waterton. It was about an older lady named Sophia who lived with her husband in a lighthouse on the beach and missed her long-grown bambinos. Sophia put on her painting hat and set off to paint a starfish one day and got quite a surprise when a boat full of babies landed on her shore. Adorable and sweet hijinks ensued, all leading to a very happy ending. Jazz liked the book and I read it to her and my other siblings a good bit in those years.

At one point, when the Lone Star Girl was small, I found a later, paperback printing of the book with a different cover and title - Plain Noodles, but that was truly the exact same book . There is a reason in the story for "plain noodles" but I don't feel that title or the cover art on that printing is as apt as the original. Somehow (mystifies me), I didn't end up buying Plain Noodles for the Lone Star Girl when I found it and I forgot about Baby Boat for a lot of years.

Fast forward to our abbreviated Cousin Camp this past summer. The Lone Star Niece always brings books from home when she comes and it is my habit to read the cousins one of hers and one of ours each night. Imagine my surprise when she pulled out Baby Boat! She had the exact book that I had purchased for Jasmine's third birthday, passed down. I really enjoyed reading it again and the Lone Star Baby proclaimed it one of her Three Favorite Books. I ordered one for us to have at home right away and we are still enjoying it.

I highly recommend this sweet book to all families with young children.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009


The Lone Star Baby has called her sister "Sissy" for as long as she could talk - "Sissy" was one of her earliest words. I think it may have been awhile before she figured out that her Sissy even had another name and it was years before she started addressing her sister by her name sometimes. For awhile, though, she has been almost as likely to call her sister by her name as by Sissy, with Sissy still the slightly more frequent form of address.

In recent months, though, the Lone Star Baby has started calling her sister "Sis". I'm not sure where this came from - maybe the fact that we have read the part in the Fudge books where Fudge starts calling his brother "Pete", but I'm not sure. She almost always says "Sis" now, though - it's rather adorable.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

One Of Those Days

The Lone Star Girl woke up with a sore throat and a lot of mucous but no fever yesterday. She's better today, but not all better, and I've been trying to make her rest (not succeeding right now as she's off to the store with her dad) and stay away from her sister. And our water line broke. In a number of places. On a Sunday. Took some good time and several hundred dollars to get a plumber. Cancelled First Day School and play dates and even am staying home from my demonstration to mind the small one while loose ends get taken care of, but am hoping that tomorrow will be better. Praying that it will be.

Thursday, September 03, 2009


Now that she is in her kindergarten year and has a second work cycle instead of napping after lunch, we have a new phrase. When the Lone Star Baby is telling me about her day, she tells me about the trabajos she did, and says things like "I did sumas in the tarde" - always pointing out what was done in that second, new work cycle by saying "in the tarde*". I think it's so cute - my big girl.

*Tarde means afternoon or evening.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

September YA Pick: Keeping Corner

My September YA pick is Keeping Corner by Kashmira Sheth. It is the story of a young child bride named Leela living in India at the time when Gandhi's teachings were beginning to embolden many Indians to think of new ways of living, with and without the British. Leela, bright and beautiful, grew up treasured by her family and anticipating a happy marriage, but when her husband was killed a short time before she was supposed to leave her parents' home to live with him as his wife, she faced the small, lonely life of a widow of her caste. With the help of her brother and her teacher, she comes to see that her life does not have to be confined by traditions that are harmful, and grows into a strong, thinking, independent young woman, as her country grows strong and independent alongside her. This was an excellent book.