Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Birds and dead things from yesterday's beach trip

Don't be crabby about the winter.......

This Horseshoe Crab is dead by the way.(He's probably crabby about the winter)I was a little scared of him because he was pretty big until I realized he wasn't alive. Not that there's any reason to fear these guys, I've already told you all, I'm afraid of everything.

This dead thing, I'm not quite sure what it is. I tried to put it back in the water just in case it was still alive but stuck. But no, dead too. I'll have to look it up in my field guide to figure out what to call it so until then, we'll just call it the squishy dead thing.
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There were a lot of birds. This probably looks like parent birds with their chicks but they are actually 2 different species. Both of which I don't know the names because I'm too lazy to look for my field guide but they are pretty common shore birds.

Sing along with me, Bob Marley lovers: Rise up this with the rising sun...three little birds...each by my doorstep....singing sweet songs... of melodies pure and true...sayin', "this is my message to you--oo--oo.....Don't worry...about a thing...cuz every little thing.....'s gonna be alright..."

Pelicans always amaze me when they fly so close to the water like this.

This was actually taken by accident while I was adjusting my camera but I liked it. I can't wait to get a better camera so I can start taking some better pictures.
Notice my shadow appears to be wearing jeans and a thick sweater so don't get too jealous, those of you who live in winter wonderland---it wasn't that warm. (But then again, it wasn't that cold either so, ok, go ahead and get jealous if you want to)

I could not end this post without showing of my modest find. I didn't find the pocketfulls I usually do in the summer but I was happy with the few I did. That hooked shaped one in the middle is from a baby Tiger Shark and I'm always excited to find one of those since I've only ever found a few. And the one in the crowd that's shaped like a perfect triangle is from a Great White, I think. I always pick up white or pink scallop shells to glue to picture frames. Scallop picture frames make good gifts.....Martha's not the only one who knows how to make stuff.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tuesday Confession

Two weeks on a row! So remember, I told you guys about my difficulty in letting go of my little "injustice" grudges ? Well I have some more. One of which I'll share with you for today's cleansing of my sins.

-I'm still irritated with my 6th grade teacher for giving me a B for my Science Project instead of an A. Mind you I was 11 years old. I made an Electromagnet machine and my experiment was to find out what kind of materials would make the best electromagnets. I even made a compass with a needle and some cork as an extra little side experiment. I made about 3 or 4 little electromagnets using a large nail, various wires, electric tape and these little mini-jumper cable looking thingies(ok it was over 20 years ago so you can't expect me to remember the exact names for everything so just use your imagination.) My hypothesis was that the tiniest wire would create the most energy and make the strongest magnet and pick up the heaviest pieces of metal when hooked up to the machine. My experiment was damn success because I proved my hypothesis and was able to recreate my experiment for my class when we did our presentations. So I should have received an A not a B. You know what my jerk of a teacher said was the reason he knocked my grade down? BECAUSE THE BOX I USED FOR THE ELECTROMAGNET MACHINE WAS AN OLD BROWN TACKLE BOX. He said if I had used something more "pleasing to the eye" my grade would have been a perfect score. Can you tell how pissed off I still am about this? Especially now that I am older because I feel like going back in time to scream at that jerk teacher of mine,"I'm f-ing 11 ok? I made a damn Electromagnet and you give me a B, but you give the idiot who made a stupid person proof hurricane machine with a MOUNTAIN DEW BOTTLE an A!" Jerk. (not to offend anyone who made any hurricane machines, I was just pointing out that it was a Mountain Dew bottle with the wrapper still on. Even though I do think my creation was superior to a hurricane machine....) I don't even know any 11 year olds who actually know what an electromagnet is. Sorry I could only use what was available to me and by the way, isn't that usually how great discoveries get made? I guess I just didn't have access to thousands of dollars like the rest of average 6th graders in the free world do. I'm sure if I had known how to boil ore and cast my own beautiful metal "pleasing to the eye" box I would have received an A and gone on to MIT to become the greatest scientist on the face of the planet. But no. I'm using my 11 year old resentment to entertain the blogosphere instead. Enjoy at my expense internets.

-So I've just realised that's not really a confession. It's a rant. Well I can't help it. I'm still mad about it. Breathe-breathe. Ok I'm ready to confess something else: I once dyed my hair blond ya'll. A few years ago when I was living in Hawaii, I had just gotten over a really bad all over skin allergy and was feeling quite depressed and vulnerable about my looks. I made an appointment for a cut and high light. The stylist suggested an all over make over and I was such a depressed little mouse I said yes. No it did not make me feel better. It looked horrible and I realised, I don't like blond hair on me. But I spent so much money to get it done, I felt like I had to get my money's worth so I kept it for 2 months until the roots got so bad I had no choice but to dye it back to my natural beloved brunette. I told myself it would be a social experiment. Here's two things I noticed about being blond: Men look at you in a dirtier way when you're blond and are obvious about their dirty thoughts. Like you should just put up with it or something. And 2, if you're not a natural blonde you have to wear a lot of makeup if you don't want to look tired and worn out all the time.

And since we're on the topic I really disdain so called "blond jokes." It gives a certain kind of gal an excuse to pretend to be dumb when they are so clearly not. I really disdain women(and men) who do that. Dumb and cute have never been on the same plane in my book. My Grandma once gave me some really good advice: Never pretend to be dumber than you are just to attract a man. The only kind of man you'll atrract by playing dumb is a dumb man.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Help me internets with my superficial(yet important) stuff

-I've been invited to a party given by leaders of the club I joined when I started volunteering for the Democratic Party in my town. The invite says they'll have all the Holiday main dishes and cocktails but to bring a side dish or appetizer. Everything I make is too 'involved' and takes forever. If I have to make a fussy dish, I'll end up not going and these people are my new friends so I want to go. What could I bring that doesn't take too long to make or that I could buy that won't get wasted? I hate cooking otherwise I wouldn't care.

-Um. Yeah. The whole winter clothes shortage is still a problem. Besides my jogging shoes, there's not one pair of shoes in my closet that cover my toes. Every year I tell myself, "This year I'll buy a couple cute outfits that are warm." And every year I end up dressing like Slouchy Smurf. Old raggedy jeans, raggedy tee shirt, old ugly ratty jacket and canvass shoes with my piglet socks. Well guess what. Even that uniform is no longer. The canvass shoes have been thrown out the piglet socks had a hole and I can't look at one more raggedy tee shirt if I want to hold on to my sanity. Ok I still have the jeans-one can never go wrong with jeans I know this. I even have one outfit I could wear and not be embarrassed to be seen in but I don't have the shoes. I can't exactly wear a pretty wool skirt, tights and cashmere sweater with my Asics running shoes. I'm sure I have something strappy and cute I could put on my feet but I'm so sensitive to the cold now. I can't be wearing high heeled strappy sandals when it 40 degrees outside. I would love a cute pair of suede boots but dammit when you're 4'11", boots just look so weird. Like you're a little kid playing dress up in a tall girl's shoes. So, if you guys see anything......I should mention I hate pointy toed shoes, and platform stripper shoes. Oh and I need a new jacket too. So if you see one, send me a link. (I hate the puffy, down blanket looking ones. Love corduroy) I wouldn't be asking for help if I didn't live on Florida you guys. There's no winter clothes here. MrPea is no help either because when I complain to him and ask for his help, he just laughs at me and asks me why I even want to bother when we'll only be cold for a few weeks anyway. Well I refuse to spend another couple months feeling like I shop at the Hobo The Clown store. That's why.

-Should I dye my hair? I usually do in the winter because my hair gets so much sun in the summers. The natural highlights the sun creates looks good in the summer but in the winter when my hair grows out it's natural dark brown, my ends start to look brassy and orangey. I just hate having to pay 90 bucks for something I could do myself for 10. Ok actually I just answered my own question. But the other 2.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tuesday Confession

I hardly ever do this. But it's only because I'm perfect so I have nothing to confess. You guys know this. Right?

Well I have only a couple really boring confessions to make. But, you know it's Tuesday and that's what Tuesday is for.

1. Today I made broccoli, yellow squash and zucchini for my lunch. Er, I should say I burnt broccoli, yellow squash and zucchini for my lunch. Anyone who's ever burnt this trio of veggies or at least broccoli already knows the wonderful aroma that never goes away. Not even after hours of burning a pumpkin spice candle from World Market. Nope, still stanks(the better, more pungent version of the word stinks. Feel free to steal it and add to your own vocabulary. You're welcome). So now my house smells like garbage soup. And pumpkin spice. Great.

2. Sometimes, when I'm too lazy to dig out and lace up my own sneakers, I use MrPea's to take Peanut downstairs to pee hoping no one will happen to walk by and see me. His feet are twice the size of mine so it's easier to just step into them and head out to door for a few seconds. Guess who was seen in really big shoes and laughed at by some of my neighbor's grandkids? Yep.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday Meme

I got this from a blog I delightfully found by accident. Thank you Curious Cat for giving me something to blog on a Monday......

1) What book has most touched your soul?

-I read so dern much I can't really say this book or that book touches my soul. I was lucky enough to have had teachers in elementary school who read to us a lot and I'm sure that's what sparked my love of reading. When I was in the 3rd grade my family moved and I was in a new school. The county happened to be having some kind of book reading contest and our teacher was reading a Ramona book to the class at the end of each day that we were "good." I participated in the book contest and enjoyed listening to my teacher read to us and that was when I started reading books on my own. My dad even took me to get my own library card and I remember being really happy about it. So that's the best answer I can come up with.

2) How do you think being a teenager today is different from when you were a teenager?

-In some ways it's easier and some ways harder. Easier because today they have a lot more access to information. Harder because, well, they have a lot more access to information. But I'm going to say it's about the same only like I said, they have internet, ipods, and gas is more expensive.

3) If you found out for sure there was no afterlife at all, would you change how you live your life?

-I would probably get really depressed. If all this beauty and ugly were for nothing is a question I ask myself often. No afterlife, the thought makes me very sad and frankly scared. I am not one of those people who don't fear the thought of completely disappearing, losing all thought and existence. What would the point in living be then? I can't really say I would change the way I live my life but I would live it with a fear and sadness without hope that I can't fathom. So I don't really know how to answer this question.

4) What is the biggest regret of your life so far?

-That's easy. I never finished college and I don't have any children. Well the children thing is not as big a regret because I can still have one given me being healthy enough to carry one and if not, there are other ways of becoming a mother. But the school thing. Yeah, what a waste really. But even then, this is also something I could change eventually.

5) Show and Tell. What comes to mind first when you see this picture? Or, tell a story if it reminds you of one.
Oh moose. No it does not make me think of Sarah Palin.....nor any of the pictures I saw of her smiling over the dead body of a big beautiful moose. Honestly it doesn't. (Plus I eat meat, so I have no place to judge. It's just for some reason I have a soft spot for moose. )

I think of Canada. When I was in Canada(for that COLD LONG NEVERENDING WINTER), I wanted very badly to see a moose. My in laws offered to drive me to the zoo to see one. But I said it didn't count. I have to see one in the wild. I walked my dog all over the place hoping to see a moose. Never saw one. I did see a bunny though. Maybe next time.

Feel free to tag yourself, anyone. These things are always useful for those of us who get blogger's block.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

When did Autumn get here without warning me? And why?

Yesterday I was wearing a miniskirt. Today, I'm miserable in jeans and a sweater. Sigh.....

My efforts to look for shark teeth have been thwarted twice over. Well I did find a few but none to really brag about. For one, rough seas left a layer of sand covering the usual patches of shells where I like to look and with the 69 degree water there's no chance of me wading. And now it's just too damn windy cold and will remain cold for at least a couple weeks or until Spring if Old Man Winter is grouchy this year. Damn this weather. Damn. Damn.

I know, I know, I'm the winter grinch. While all you sweater and mitten lovers are getting all excited and digging out your beloved long johns, I'm getting ready for my two to three month long grump fest. But again, I have to say I'm not going to complain too much because, well, hello, I live in Florida! So I have come up with a few things to cheer myself up with.

1. I just went to the beach 2 days ago. Wearing shorts.

2. Friday night at 7:55, MrPea and I ran out to our balcony to watch the sky for the space shuttle launch. This was the 6th one I've been able to watch right from my home. Mind you, during the day all you can really see is smoke and a burst of bright orange. But the night launches. Oh my the night launches, ya'll! Flashes of green surrounded by a bright halo and you can usually hear applause and cheers from anyone else who happened to have come out to watch our space shuttle fly into space. There's nothing like it and I saw it right from my own patio. Said a prayer for our astronauts.

3. I'm still on the decaf. Ok I strayed a little a couple weeks ago because I really needed the energy for canvassing BUT that was it. No caffiene for me.

4. My jeans still fit me.

5. Colder weather means I need new shoes. Which gives me just the excuse I need to go shoe shopping.

That's all I could come up with today. Hopefully I can come up with a few more by Thanksgiving. Have any good news? Leave me some.....
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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Happy Veterans Day

Hope everyone's having a good week.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

We did it!

We turned Florida blue! We elected "that one!"

America's new first family.

I'm so proud to have been a part of it all. To have been part of such a positive and inclusive campaign for change!

Barrack Obama is our nation's first Biracial President. And as someone who is also biracial, I have felt a personal connection and drive to elect someone, not who I want to have a beer with, or who's "like me", but someone first and foremost qualified AND knows what it's like to be me. Someone who looks out not just for their own, but will look out for all of us. It is my belief and hope that we have elected(no pun intended again) that one. In my conversations with fellow children who are products of mixed marriages, the topic that comes up so often is our sometimes feeling of invisibility. We can either be one or the other ethnicity, not both. I have always felt like an American and have always loved my country with the devotion of a veteran's daughter who pretty much grew up on a military base. But always within a culture that tells you to check the box, are you white or Asian? You can't be both. I always felt like I was never enough of one or the other for either culture. I sometimes describe myself as a chameleon,fitting in everywhere and no where, but doing my best to create my own identity while at the same time embracing and celebrating both parts of myself. And identity is something that many biracial kids in my generation still struggle with. I could never be white enough to be considered white or Asian enough to be considered Asian; living in a "check the box" culture. We begin to feel invisible sometimes because up until maybe a few years ago, there was no "box" for people like us. I've heard the word Hapa, used to describe people like me with mixed Asian backgrounds, someone even wrote a book featuring us a few years back. I picked up that book and saw my face on every page. In 2004 I watched a self described,"skinny kid with a funny name," speak to America and something in my heart burst. I was not only, no longer invisible, but I was now a "skinny kid with a funny name" too. Living in such a red state and having had the words "unAmerican" pressed upon people like me with unapologetic liberal leanings, listening to this unknown state senator speak about America and Americans with inclusion as the defining message, I felt like someone had given my beloved flag back to me when Karl Rove-ian divisive politics tried to take it away from me and bully me. So while we're celebrating America's first African American President, many of us "hapas" feel some small ownership in celebrating a bi-ethnic President who struggled with identity in a similar way we did. We are happy for our African American brothers and sisters, and we can celebrate ourselves as well. Because an African American President named Barack Hussein Obama can possibly open the doors for us too. I cried like one of my own had won last night. Because he is one of our own in a really special way that all of us who are of mixed heritage can claim.

And by the way I just want to call it- I told everyone I knew after that beautiful 2004 key note speech that someday he was going to be president. Most people said,"WHOOO? What the hell kind of name is that, sounds weird!" And now anyone who remembers me saying that are eating their words. So I just had to brag about that too and rub it in- oh I love being right. :O)

I canvassed til an hour before the polls closed last night. I felt like I contributed to my country just by participating. I said to myself, whatever the outcome, I will never have to say that I didn't do my best so if my party doesn't win, I would at least not have any regrets. When I attended my first meeting back in June and heard our county coordinator talk numbers and say that we could really turn Florida blue, I thought,"Yeah right. Ok." But I hoped. And we did! And I was part of it! So tonight at our party I want to relish in that. But I look forward to working with my new found blue friends in finding some small ways to be purple because everyone who I spoke with when I phonebanked and canvassed: Republican, Democrat, Green, Independents said the same thing. That they were sick and tired of the divided atmosphere we're living in.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

I was there

I don't need to tell anyone who doesn't live under a rock what day today is. I have been canvassing my behind off and you don't need to guess for whom. Yesterday I got maybe 3 hours of sleep and didn't think I was going to be able to do it one more day. I thought maybe if I'm so exhausted, I'll just phone bank for an hour until I'm tired. But after attending a rally with thousands of people giving positive vibes to each other, praying together, dancing together, and singing our National Anthem together, then hearing one of the best pep talks I could have ever been given, I was on a high energy for the rest of the day and was able to muster the power to keep the wheels turning. You can see from this picture what a great view I got to have and how close my position was from the podium.

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As he worked the stage when it was over I yelled out as loud as I could, "Senator show me your handsome face!" Whether or not he heard, I don't know but everyone around started laughing and all hands went in the air holding cameras. So this was the only photo I got with him smiling and of course as ya'll can see the person in front of me was definitely taller than 4'11".
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I'm going out again to canvass right now and make sure everyone who hasn't voted yet gets to the polls today. To the very last minute I'll be walking.

Everyone who hasn't voted yet please get out to the polls and vote. Whoever you support. It is such a privilege to be able to make our voices heard in this country that we shouldn't take for granted. Stand in line, bring a chair and some snacks, make friends with your fellow voters, do whatever you need to do. Just get there and VOTE!!!

My favorite lines from his stump rally speech has always been this one.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Little Pea and Jolly Green Giant

Yesterday I showed up at my team leader's house expecting to canvass. She told me I was the only who wanted to and everyone else wanted to phone bank. I said, "I'll stick around and make calls with you guys in case anyone else shows up that I can convince to come with me because I don't like and won't canvass alone. I was by myself yesterday and I didn't feel safe." A man sitting on the couch looked up and said, "If you need a partner, I suppose I can go with you." Then he stood up. And he was frikin' 6'9", OK? Yeah. I'm 4'11". Obviously I felt safe. What a sight we were walking through our town. People opened their doors when we knocked and for a second just looked at us like we were from the circus or some kind of Halloween comedy group. But it made it easier for us to talk to people because they seemed to want to know how in the world we even knew each other. So if anyone happened to look out their windows yesterday and noticed a freakishly tall man walking around with a freakishly small woman carrying a clipboard and waving to people, that was us.

I know I brag all the time about my freakish strength that enables me to pick up my tall 6'2" husband and carry him around for a few minutes. No way in hell I could have picked up this guy. Not even on steroids.

Today I am exhausted from all my canvassing and need a big rest. I feel guilty about it as it is crunch time but I'm dead tired in my bones. I feel like I've walked a million miles. I'll be back on the trail tomorrow, so again guys, if I knock on your door, be nice. Offer me some Gatorade. Or some painkillers. Whatever.