My Favorite Things: Part 9

I have watched this video a minimum of 6 times in the past week.  It is a re-make of the song “Whip Your Hair” by Willow Smith, in which Jimmy Fallon (acting as Neil Young) and Bruce Springsteen (as himself) sing the lyrics in their own style.  It is hilarious and it is nice to see celebrities having some fun and being funny.

If you have not seen the original video, here it is.


My Favorite Things: Part 8

I have a lot of favorite things so here we go…

1)FRESH TOMATO IN THE HOUSE!!!  This was my dinner.  Bagel, cream cheese, tomato, salt and pepper.  Heaven on a plate.

2)  It is Father’s Day and I got to spend yesterday and today with my dad (and the rest of my family).  He is pretty awesome and I am so lucky to have him.  Happy Father’s Day to all of you dads out there!

3)  I have five days left until the end of the school year.  Those five days will be filled with grading and grading and (did I mention?) grading.  Then, the sunshine of glorious summer will spill down on my and blissful frolicking through rainbow-lit fields are going to follow.

4)  You may have noticed that I have been really absent over the past few weeks.  That is going to change in the very near future.  I have certainly been reading enough.  My cereal-for-dinner diet has to change so I can post real food.  And if you must know, the winning cereal combo is Life cereal, cinnamon, walnuts, and almond milk.  You can see why I have forsaken dinner cooking for that, right?


My Favorite Things: Part 6

Memorial Day

We are currently in the midst of Memorial Day weekend in the USA.  Many people take this weekend as only a lovely 3-day break from work and school.  Yes, that is fabulous, but I think it is also important to remember it as a time to honor those people who fight for us every day.  For me, it does not have anything to do with whether I agree with the current conflict or wars.  It has to do with thinking about and remembering those people who sacrifice for ideas that are noble: freedom, honor, and justice.

While I can (and do) laugh at videos like this one, in the end they break my heart.  How can we send people off to fight for our freedoms when many of us do not even have a basic understanding of how our country came to be or where we fit in the world today?

I ask you to do three things on this Memorial Day.

  1. Make sure you know where your country is on a map of the world.
  2. Think about your friends and relatives who were or are in the military.
  3. Eat a hamburger 🙂

My Favorite Things: Part 5

“All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten” by Robert Fulghum

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at school.

These are the things I learned:

  • Share everything.
  • Play fair.
  • Don’t hit people.
  • Put things back where you found them.
  • Clean up your own mess.
  • Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
  • Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
  • Wash your hands before you eat.
  • Flush.
  • Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
  • Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
  • Take a nap every afternoon.
  • When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
  • Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
  • Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup – they all die. So do we.
  • And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned – the biggest word of all – LOOK.

Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.

Take any one of those items and extrapolate it into sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your family life or your work or government or your world and it holds true and clear and firm. Think what a better world it would be if we all – the whole world – had cookies and milk at about 3 o’clock in the afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap. Or if all governments had as a basic policy to always put things back where they found them and to clean up their own mess.

And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out in the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.

I propose that we all leave our respective schooling and jobs for the day and head down to Kindergarten. I think nap time, cookies and milk, and basic standards of respect and responsibility are just what the doctor ordered.

My Favorite Things: Part 3

Spring Flowers

When flowers start to bloom, I know that Spring is finally here.  When I think of this season, I feel the warmth of the sun on my skin, smell suntan lotion, taste cold smoothies and smell grilled food.  When I walk out in the morning to my car, the moisture of the dew in the air tickles my skin.  The echoes of kids playing outside begin to permeate the background noise of my daily life.

This is what flashes in my mind when I see the first tulips of the season.

I have always loved tulips.  Perhaps I was first drawn to them because they were easy to tell apart from other kinds of flowers and even easier to doodle (which, for a poor artist, is saying something…).

My love for them renewed on my first trip to Paris, 7 years ago now, when I saw that the city adorned itself with them.  From then on, tulips were linked in my head with Paris, my favorite city in the world.

This past visit to Paris, I took my fair share of photos of Parisian tulips and other flowers.  Here are some of them:

Of course, it seems like every rose (or tulip) has its thorn. This time of the year, when all of the flowers bloom, is the one time that I really experience allergies. Every morning, I wake up feeling like I’m inside a bubble that mutes all of my sense AND applies pressure to my head. Great.

For some reason, that does not stop me. This past week found me tromping through a park to take a look at the local tulips that are currently blooming. Did I feel well the next morning? No. Did I regret it? No.

Some sights are just worth it.

My Favorite Things: Part 2

It really does not take a lot to make me happy.  On the flip side, it doesn’t take much to make me sad either.

Anyway, this week I have two installments of my favorite things.

1.  Royal Weddings:  Quite a few people scoffed at how excited we were over the nuptials of Kate Middleton and Prince William.  I don’t care.  I think it is sweet that two people who seem to care about each other are getting married.  To top it off, a “commoner” gets to become a Princess!  I don’t quite understand why the BBC needed to employ 450 people to cover the wedding, nor do is it quite clear why the US had more coverage of the event than the UK, but whatever.  In the end, it was nice to have something to celebrate in the news.

2.  This YouTube clip:  Julian Smith shows us, in an unlikely genre, a passion for reading and the consequences for interrupting someone when they are in the midst of a good book.  This made me giggle.  Watch it.  Then you can giggle too.