BulgingButtons

Not bad for a fat girl


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Five More Things That Make Me Happy

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Gratitude is important. It reminds us that the world doesn’t totally suck. There is beauty and joy to be found, and it’s easier to find if you actively seek it. Here a few things that make me happy. And if you want more, look here and here and here.

Looking Through Old Photos

I have a digital photo frame in my studio, and it scrolls through photos while I work. I glance up and instantly I’m back in Hawai’i with my son, or I’m hugging my mom in London. A photo of my son’s first sleep over at camp reminds me of how much he’s grown up, and one of my high school friends reminds me that there are people I have loved for decades who love me back.

Hummingbirds

In general I’m not a huge fan of birds, at least not up close, but hummingbirds are different. They are petite and delicate and beautiful. The way they hover, then dart to the next location in space charms me. I’m fortunate to live in a place where we have these lovely little creatures. Every time I see one I feel as though it’s a sign that it’s going to be a good day.

John Hughes Movies

Pretty in Pink, Breakfast Club, and of course Sixteen Candles. Yes, I love them all. I’m required to, since I grew up in the eighties. And no, I’m not ashamed of it. And the music! Psychedelic Furs, OMD, Simple Minds… love it.

Silly Hats

Today happens to be Derby Day, the running of the Kentucky Derby, and therefore it is also unofficially silly hat day. The funkier the better. I don’t actually wear hats very often, but I enjoy seeing them on others.

Children Singing

There’s nothing quite like a group of children who have rehearsed singing a song together. It can be preschoolers or a high school choir, I don’t care. The blended voices of kids gets me every time. Tissue, please.


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In Defense of Memorization

Once upon a time children went to school and memorized poems. They memorized state capitals, multiplication tables, and presidents. They memorized chemical elements, French verb conjugations, and parts of speech. They memorized a lot. Those days aren’t completely gone, but they have certainly changed.il_340x270.672162861_qqz4

Trends in education have shifted away from rote memorization to concept development and understanding, and in most cases I believe that’s a good thing. If something is important enough to memorize, students should understand its importance. There is also a feeling that we live in an age where information is available at our fingertips through technology, so memorization isn’t so important anymore. Again, in most cases I would agree. Continue reading


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Daily Passion Prompt 20: What Legacy Will I Leave?

TODAY’S QUESTION

For some reason I frequently feel like I’m totally forgettable. People I’ve met several times don’t seem to recall who I am. Have I left no impression at all? Am I invisible? Sometimes I wonder. If I don’t seem to leave much impression in life, how am I to leave any type of legacy after I’m gone?

invisible-man-shadows-pol-ubeda-4When it comes to the big picture, we are all just tiny blips on the radar screen of time. We are born, we live, we die. Most of us leave behind loved ones who will mourn and remember us, but over time they too will expire and along with them, the memory of us will die. It’s as though our lives are a flame, warm and bright but fleeting. Some of us are like tiny birthday candles, snuffed out quickly and soon forgotten. Others are a bonfire, or even a forest fire. Some lives reach millions, for better or worse, others hardly reach beyond their own front doors.

Of course I want my family to remember me with love and tenderness, and I’m sure they will, at least for a little while. I do wonder what will become of me and my memory after I’m gone, but deep down I think I know. I came from nowhere, and I will return there. I was adopted at birth, never allowed to know anything about the circumstances of my origin. I simply appeared. I believe that after I’m gone a while, I will simply disappear, forgotten from the family history, possibly relegated to a footnote, or an asterisk on a distant relative’s family tree. I was a give away for one family and an add-on for another, and as such, perhaps easily dismissed by both.

candleOutside of my family, I hope to leave a larger legacy. I hope that somewhere out in the world at least a few of my students look back fondly on their experiences in my classroom. I hope they remember that I taught them something, or tried to make some lesson memorable, or even that I was goofy and silly in class. I hope that at least one person took away something positive from their time under my care. Sadly, I feel like the odds are against me on this point too. People grow up and move on. Rarely do they remember their fourth or second grade teacher making a mark on their lives. It seems the only time they do recall these people, they do so in horror.

Maybe this is part of the reason I write and quilt and scrapbook. These are all ways for me to say, “I was here.” I may just be one of those little blips existing in a tiny space in the universe until my own flame is snuffed out, but my life is important. I live and love and dream. I can and will leave my mark on the world, and I will do my best to leave it better than it was when I arrived.