Thursday, December 11, 2014

* But it rhymes with Meorge

In addition to my job, I keep busy a few other ways. I work out at the YWCA. I give tours one day a week at my favorite magnet school. And one afternoon a week after work I teach art at George's school.

Recently we've been finishing up the students' presents for their parents (or whomever). Because I was given free rein, the gifts are not Christmas themed or holiday themed or even winter themed, though they did build upon several concepts we worked on this fall.

However by necessity there was a formula, but within that formula existed a number of opportunities to pick Door A or Door B or even avoid the doors, and so I am delighted to be able to say that although clearly all part of the same project, every student's piece looks very different from every other student's.

One of those students, and I am not naming names*, chose to take his piece in a political direction. Specifically a "historical political satire" direction. He's been cracking up all afternoon as he tries to explain to me the subtle and overt layers of humor.

Wish me luck Monday when all the students give their pieces to their parents (or whomever) at the Christmas Musical Extravaganza!

The colors are distorted, but they are light gray and a deep purple, almost an eggplant. The drawings are black and white, much like George's worldviews.

Saturday, December 06, 2014

I would like to shake his or her hand

The person at Food Lion charged with naming storebrand products, that is.

Having recently abandoned the now incredibly expensive, customer serviceless grocery* that is Lowes Foods, I have been visiting stores in much the way one visits churches, hoping to find The One --- a grocery home, if you will.

Thus I came across the work of the naming master at Food Lion, and over the last three weeks as I have shopped there, I have been repeatedly rewarded with new glimpses of his or her genius.

* Nigel Alston had a great column in the Winston-Salem Journal a few years back that has stuck with me. He told a story about a group of people told to serve themselves coffee in a coffee mug they selected from a bunch of different ones, how they all took some time picking a mug they felt best reflected their self-perception without any thought to how the mug would hold the same exact coffee, regardless. I feel like Lowes is trying to sell me a fancy mug, and snooker me into paying top dollar for it, when the coffee inside is still the same. Cheerios I buy at Lowes do not taste any different from Cheerios I buy at Food Lion or Teeter or anywhere else, so why on earth would I pay 30% more for them? If I wanted to pay Fresh Market prices, I would shop at Fresh Market, where the coffee at least matches that mug.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Saturday, November 01, 2014

The Week in Phonophotos

Top photo: If you haven't yet tried Irie Rhythms, aka "From Kingston to Winston", at 3252 Silas Creek (a door or two from Marshall's), get thee there with a quickness.

Photos 2-5: It's autumn! And Halloween! And glorious!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Parking lot outside my workplace

I always wish my father were still alive, but I am most acutely aware of the loss when I see an unknown bird. My father was a lifelong "birder", a marvelous hobby he could take around the world in his travels for work. If he had been with me yesterday, he would have immediately known what type of bird this was, and he would have shared some interesting factoid about the bird with me.

Other things I miss about my father
his peach pie
his love of history
his enjoyment of face jugs
his unbridled love for my boys, including my husband

Monday, October 27, 2014

On suns and sons

"Stop!" the oldest shouted, and so I did, then waited for him to tell me what he'd forgotten this time. Instead he rolled down his window and thrust his arm out, phone in hand. While he snapped, I snapped, happy to see something of me in him.

Friday, October 24, 2014

How's George?

That's the question most people ask me when they see me. And the answer is GREAT. This school is probably the best money we've ever spent. He is engaged, his anxiety is low, his self-esteem is high, and he is thriving. The school is small and sweet and safe, and it is exactly what he needed when he needed. He loves the structure, I love the flexibility, and he almost seems like a different kid. Like George, but so, so happy and without his brow perpetually furrowed.

(I very consciously do not post the names of my children's schools, but if you know an "exceptional child" who in spite of special education services still seems to slip through the cracks, a student whose combination of challenges and strengths is simply too unique to be well served smoothly, please email me. I will happily share.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Of all the awful things to fall in fall

Two small, pale blue eggs found broken on my doorstep, presumably from the nest over the light. Were they old left behinds pushed out by a new, would-be inhabitant? This is my implausible hope.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Annual traditions

It's Halloween costume season. This year I have three to make -- a surfeit of opportunities to wound and/or maim and/or poison and/or impale myself!