Thursday, October 26, 2006


Hey all you blog readers...don't forget to email Halloween photos to, and I'll post them on my blog so everyone can vote for his/her favorite Halloween creation....

Entries as early as 10/27/2006 will be considered since tomorrow is the day we all celebrate at work.

Dress up, and join in the fun....

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


I'm home after an exciting trip to Washington, and today I returned to the office, my classes, and all the work involved with both. The time in DC, the presentation at the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights at the OAS, and being able to see my friends, Laida and Pepín, made the nerve-wrecking drive over worth the effort.

Around 8PM Sunday evening, about 15 miles outside of Hagertown, MD, I heard a thumping sound outside of the car. Within seconds, it sounded like there was a helicopter flying right above me, and then I knew that rather than being targeted by some reconnaisance vehicle in the sky, I had a blow-out in my rear left tire.

So, there I was, on the side of the interstate, with 18-wheelers and heavy traffic zooming by. I was on the phone with my friend, Caroline, when all this occurred, and as she hung up, she said she'd pray for assistance to come my way. Not 5 minutes later, a car pulled off in front of me, and two young men hopped out to ask if I needed help. There were Samuel's age and like him, returning to school from fall vacation. Long story short--they changed my tire and made it possible for me to continue without having to wait three hours for AAA to arrive.

Yes, I believe in angels, and yes, I am totally grateful to these two young men for their help. I would be hard pressed to argue that today's younger generation is going to ruins...My experience is testimony to the total contrary.

Monday, Laida, Pepín, and I spent the day lobbying the offices of the 13 MD's and 2 dentists in Congress to assist us in raising awareness of the plight of 6 Cuban doctors and 1 dentist who are in prison across the island. I bet we walked 5 miles across the Senate and Represenative buildings in the process. I was amazed at the ages of the staffers with whom we spoke about these serious issues. I believe the oldest was only 33. Then, yesterday, we made our presentations at the OAS in front of the Commission on Human Rights. I believe our presentations were highly regarded and taken seriously although I realize that in the long run, we will have very little direct impact on shifting things in Cuba. At least, there will be documentation within the archives of the OAS about those topics we addressed.

So, today has been all about returning to students, tying up loose ends regarding the event last weekend, and getting back in the groove at the office. I leave for DC again on Monday for another conference about foundations and philanthropy at the community college level. (A barmometer of my level of enthusiasm for that would barely reach 0.) But, perhaps I'll have time to take in a couple of museums and walk around the city some more.

It's getting colder out...the tiny snowstorm that came through finished off all the beautiful flowers that remained from the summer...I've had to pull out my winter clothes....Sleeping in a hat and scarf is not far away, I can tell.

Off to go home...Namasté...T.

Friday, October 20, 2006


since I last sat down to update my blog because...

this has been one of the busiest weeks I've had in a helluva long time...

I've spent the greater part of my time at work getting ready for the opening event of this year's Evergreen Arts and Humanities Series (which I chair and wish I didn't at times)..We have an absolutely amazing year planned, and tomorrow night Adrienne Young and Little Sadie will play in concert to kick off the 2006-2007 slate of programs. Coordinating everything from those involved in the reception to the publicity person to the stage decorator and sound man has been quite an adventure. Were it not for Tom Jackson's assistance, I'd be really loony!

When I haven't been running around like a chicken with my head cut off for the Series, I've had to do things like teach, be a mom, attend other meetings, and write a presentation which I will deliver next Tuesday at the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights Assembly of the Organization of American States in Washington, DC. This is a MAJOR presentation, and I have yet to finish it...Hence today's entry on my blog will be short.

My topic for the OAS will address human rights violations of children in Cuba, and the research has indicated that 1) there's a lot of stuff that needs to be documented, and 2) I could write a dissertation on any given aspect of the issue. I'll save that for later once I get some free time...(tee hee!)

Samuel's at home with his friend, Harrison, for fall break. I can't get enough of seeing him, especially since he was damn near wiped out by a car last week in NC. Some joker ran over him--ran into him, rather, as he was crossing the street. Thank God he is a rugby player and has learned how to take a hit! (literally)...Bottom line is that he's OK, has a couple of bruises, and no internal injuries...He's one lucky fellow, and I'm one relieved mom.

Since I last chronicled anything, Eliza's been to homecoming where she ditched her date and had a great time with other friends; Annie and Molly have gotten really stinky thanks to their encounter with a skunk, and the frost has taken its toll on my flowers. I do have a couple of beautiful roses left...a sweet reminder of warmer days, and some late planted greens are beginning to take hold down at the garden. My room is full of plants I brought in from the cold, and apparently each one of them had a huge share of bugs and spiders hidden in the leaves because my room has been full of things that crawl and fly in the night.

OK...enough for today..I'm off to feed the animals and FINISH my paper...

Love to all...


Friday, October 13, 2006

Tag, I'm It!

I was tagged by Mary Ann, and, in return, I'm tagging Tom. (no pressure, Tom, to answer anytime soon...I know you have so MUCH free time.....)...So, here ya go - lots of random info about me!
Have You Ever.....
Taken a picture completely naked?
I have been naked while taking a picture of someone else. And I have been naked while having my picture taken. (Sorry Mary, Ann, I’m using your answer on this one because it fits me as well.)
Told a lie?
Never..Now, do you really think that’s the truth??
Had feelings for someone who didn't have them back?
Too, too many times…
Been arrested?
Nope, I’ve never been arrested and am quite thankful that I have never been caught at several things that could have gotten me arrested!
Seen someone die?
Yes, I have. I have been with two friends at the moment of their last exhales, and both times, my life was changed in a tremendous way. It was an amazing experience!
Kissed a picture?
Of course!
Slept in until 5pm?
Can’t recall a single time I’ve made it ‘til 5PM…
Had sex at work?
Nope, haven’t done that one…
Fallen asleep at work?
After 30 years of in-services and teachers’ meetings, I will confess to falling asleep at least twice a year in those incredibly dull meetings.
Held a snake?
Sure, I like them! As a child, I had pet snakes. Gladys, a garter snake, escaped in the house and was located months later when my mom swept out a “moving fuzz ball” underneath the heat register.
Ran a red light?
Been suspended from school?
No, I’ve always been a good girl; however, if I had gotten caught at a few things, I would have been expelled!
Pole danced?
Been fired from a job?
Sang Karaoke?
Never had done that either.
Done something you told yourself you wouldn't?
Many, many times….
Laughed until something you were drinking came out your nose?
Oh yes!
Laughed until you peed?
All the time. I pee when I laugh, when I cough, when I sneeze. Having children does wonderful things for one's body.
Caught a snowflake on your tongue?
Many, many times. As a child, I used to think the snowflake melted its design into my tongue.
Kissed in the rain?
Yes, wonderfully yes!
Had sex in the rain?
Yes, and loved it! It was a warm rain.
Sang in the shower?
Many times.
Gave your private parts a nickname?
Yes, but I'm not sharing either.
Ever gone to work without underwear?
Well, mmmmmm, face is turning red.. Mostly because on the occasions when I did, I totally spaced out and forgot to put on my panties. Going bra-less is a given, especially before I had kids.
Sat on a rooftop?
Many, many times!
Played chicken?
Only in a swimming pool with someone on my shoulders.
Been pushed/thrown into a pool with all your clothes on?
Broken a bone?
No, knock on wood.
Flashed someone?
Mooned Someone?
All the time. Just ask Tom Jackson.
Skinny Dipped?
Yes…one of life’s great pleasures.
Shaved your head?
No, but I’ve had my hair cut very, very short.
Slept Naked?
Of course!
Blacked out from drinking?
No, not totally blacked out…but I have thrown up from overindulgence.
Played a prank on someone?
Many times.
Had a gym membership?
Yes, for years.
Felt like killing someone?
No, but I think I could if someone hurt my kids…
Cried over someone you were in love with?
More than I want to admit…
Had Mexican jumping beans as pets?
Yes, I bought them with my spending money in Cherokee, NC, when I was a kid.
Been in a band?
The Watauga High School Marching Pioneers. (We were really bad!)
Shot a gun?
Shot a bow and arrow?
Played strip poker?
Donated blood?
No, but I really want to one of these days.
Ever jump out of an airplane?
No…don’t have a burning desire to either.
Been to more than 10 countries?
OK, Tom, you're up. Maybe this will get you to update your blog...hint, hint!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


I lost my keys today....found them about 10 minutes after I sent out a college-wide email saying I had lost them...

The brakes went out on the car of one of my students who had her baby in the car with her...She had to drive into a field and run up a hill to get stopped...She and the baby bumped around...neither hurt, thank goodness...

Samuel just called and very nonchalantly told me he had been hit by a car, had a bleeding head and arm, had been thrown on the hood and fell off into the street...He's off to the emergency room to make sure there are no internal injuries...I could be a bit unnerved at the moment!!

The animals, aka, 2 corgis and one cat, are skitterish and won't go three feet away from me....

Luther looks dead again....

I saw a HUGE snake in the road this afternoon, and it was alive and coiled up, ready to strike at the next passing car...

The sky is ablaze with streaks of lightening...the wind is howling....rain in pouring down in big sheets.....

My conclusions at the moment: I'm going to turn off the computer and go hide my head under the sheets.

Buenas noches.....

Sunday, October 08, 2006


These past two days have been absolutely glorious...early fall at its best! I spent both Saturday and Sunday outdoors, the first extended period of time I've had outdoors since school began in August, and I LOVED IT !!

Saturday, I mowed and mowed some more. With the thought I won't be doing it again this year, I tackled both banks and cut down the stands of weeds on them that had been growing since mid-August. I think I mowed for about 4 hours. I felt good in my body, definitely stronger and more flexible thanks to my trips to the Y and yoga. When I hit the sack last night, I was out in a moment's notice and slept like a log for 9 straight hours!

Today, I thought about going in to town and decided otherwise the moment I walked outside. At that point, I decided to weed out the beds down by the barn and plant some late greens--collards, kale, buttercrunch, and turnips. Then I took a lap around the back field with the dogs and my camera in hand. Tom Jackson came over for a while, and we ended up digging the last of the onions down by the silo and making a fall bundle from the cornstalks we pulled out from between the weeds. After Tom left, the sun was beginning to sink in the west, so I grabbed my camera one more time and captured a few more farm flowers in the light of the late afternoon sun. I couldn't make myself come in until it was totally dark outside.

The photo will provide some idea of what's thriving around here as frost approaches. I hope for a delay in cold weather and pray that days like these past two will be around for a while longer.

Saturday, October 07, 2006


Last week, when Molly, the corgi, got her head stuck in between the posts on the back porch, I felt some relief in that I hadn't been the one to get caught in one of my "moments" around the farm in a while. Today, however, I must confess to re-upping my membership in The Dumb Club in a big way.

Last week, I eulogized Luther, our farm beta fish, at what I thought was his passage. I have to confess that I didn't take the time to get him buried and just left him lying at the bottom of his bowl. My intent was to get him under ground today.

Wellllllll, as it turns, out Luther's NOT dead...When I walked by his bowl today on my way to get the shovel to take him out to bury him, he swam to the front of his bowl and started flapping his gills at me--the way he always does when I tell him good morning and drop him some food. I damn near jumped out of my jeans! I can't say that Luther looks in top form after a week of no food and cold water. In fact, he does appear to be on his last "fin" (so to speak)...He was swimming somewhat sideways, but he was definitely alive enough to beg and let me know he's still "kickin." Poor fellow...he must have been starved!

I'm feeling somewhat awful for assuming Luther had kicked the bucket. (I did poke him with a chopstick when I thought he was a "goner," and he didn't move then.) If he were something other than a fish, I'd fix him a really tasty supper and a nice, warm place to rest and recuperate.
Perhaps, I'll just put a towel over his bowl and hope that keeps him warm enough to regain his strength....

Namaste, Luther!

Monday, October 02, 2006


Hey, my few but loyal blog readers...It's time to start thinking about Halloween costumes! This year Namasté Blog is going to host its first Halloween costume competition for the first Farm Halloween cyber-fiesta!

All you have to do is take a photo of yourself in your costume and send it to me in care of (If you'd like to add a little commentary about your Halloween activities, that would be fine as well.)I will assemble all the photos and post them here on my blog. Those of you who check in regularly can leave a comment as to your pick for the costume that most strikes your fancy. No categories..No criteria.. The costume with the most comments will win something yet to be determined... maybe a pack of seeds for next year's pumpkin patch....maybe a wand to conjure up some magic...maybe a year's supply of candy corn...

I'll post a weekly reminder as we approach All Hallow's Eve, so start thinking about your "get-up" now.

Let the creativity roll and join in the fun!

(Art credit: Jennifer Hewiston - October - Llewellyn's Witches Calendar 2006)

Sunday, October 01, 2006


I am sorry to report tonight that Luther, the blue farm beta fish, has passed on to the great fish bowl in the sky. Luther has been a part of the farm for 5 or 6 years, a long life for a beta fish. I think the thought of another winter of chilly water was too much for him to bear, and when he sensed it coming these last couple of days, he just decided to check out.

Luther is the 4th in a long line of farm betas. Bob, beta #1, overcame a near death experience as Hendrix knocked his bowl on the floor where he flopped around until Eliza walked in the room and rescued him. He lived to be the subject of Eliza's 4th grade proficiency test essay, "Bob's Near Death Experience." Bob was followed by Hank, whom Eliza accidently dropped down the drain when she was cleaning his bowl. She did manage to grasp his tail as he was swirling away, but alas, it came off in her hand, and Hank got sucked down the bathroom sink pipe. (I assured her that the drain ran directly into the pond and that Hank would be just fine. That thought soothed her heart until she realized the pond freezes over in winter and Hank was a tropical fish.) Then there was Dean who met an untimely death when Loonis knocked over his temporary tank and made him her dinner. Shortly thereafter, Luther came to live with us.

Luther loved to flirt with me when I stood in front of his bowl to feed him. (Great example of behavior modification...) And, I will credit Luther with being a rather smart fish-- he learned at an early age to swim to the bottom of the tank and lie really still when a cat perched beside it to watch him.

Tomorrow, I'll bury Luther in my flower garden so that as he returns to the earth, he can fertilize the small space of ground where he lies. And then, I'll probably go buy another beta fish.

May you rest in peace, Luther....I'll miss my daily "Good morning, Luther!" before I dropped in your BetaBites.
You were a good fish!