23) Piercings/tattoos: Day 60.5.2

I have two pairs of ear piercings. I was 16 when my brother bought my first pair of earrings, with my mother’s permission. So when I went to his place to visit, my cousin took me to get my ears pierced. We called my mother to get permission. After the piercing, I didn’t touch my ears at all. I didn’t want to irritate them but didn’t know that they needed to be twisted. Several hours later my cousin took me into the bathroom and drenched cotton balls in rubbing alcohol to clean them. That is when she found out that I had left them alone. So dribbling the alcohol down my ear and neck, she started turning the first one. Being warm and hungry, smelling the rubbing alcohol, I quickly found myself on the floor with my brother standing over me and hearing my cousin laughing in the background. Needless to say, my next set went much easier because I kept turning them all day long. But when I got home, my mother accused me of going behind her back and planning all of this and asking for forgiveness, not permission.  Thirty years later, and it is still an issue.

I have no tattoos. When I was in high school, the thing was for girls to get roses tattooed on their shoulders. I loved roses and wanted one, but I never wanted to part with my money or deal with my parents. So, time went on, and I never got one. Now thirty years later, two of our four kids have tattoos. My husband wasn’t very happy with them, and the saying became that if I wanted a divorce, all I had to do was to get a tattoo. Now I have found one I would like to get with my daughter. She is ready any day, but again, I don’t want to deal with my husband about it. The tattoo would be a tiny rose along the edge of one ear; my daughter wants hers on a finger.  Some day…

22) Three Personality Traits I’m Proud Of: Day 59.2

I have been in a bad habit of cutting myself down; usually only seeing my bad traits. This negative self talk is not healthy, and so, I have tried to change that about myself. I try to smile at myself in my mirror in the mornings and be grateful. But that has nothing to do with looking at the positives of myself. This prompt is helpful in that. I have to take a look at myself and see what I like.

Today, I am proud of my perseverance.  Even though much of what I set out to do gets waylaid by my sidetracked mind, I do find ways to get back and finish. It might take me longer than expected to finish something, but it will get finished.

I am proud to be a loyal friend. It takes a lot for me to turn on someone. Once we are friends, I am there for you and will not turn my back on you. I will not dump a friend for a newer one who comes along. I will try to find ways to fit everyone into my life and stand up for those who need it.

I am proud that I can see things on the brighter side. I am usually positive and upbeat even when a lot of things seem to be going wrong. I will be miserable for a short time, then bounce back and find my happiness and the light in the world.

21) My Guilty Pleasure: Day 58.2

I have had my share of guilty pleasures over the years. Food has been among the top of them, primarily gooey chocolate. But other things have been guilty pleasures as well. I used to love watching my husband work when we were just dating. He had a grace about how he worked on an engine or manhandled a truck transmition. Some of my guilty pleasures have faded over the years too.

Right now, I would say that my guilty pleasures are eating or drinking something creamy, smooth, and chocolaty and reading a good book in a hot bath.  I have always loved reading, but would feel guilty doing it when I could be doing something productive. Maybe that is why the bath seems right. I am soaking in a hot hug and reading something that engages my mind.

20) Earliest childhood memory: Day 57.2

I have many little snippets of memory from when I was between two and four. That is a time when we lived in southern California. It was a location very different from my present location, where I grew up, in many ways. But it is a dream that stands out as a complete full memory of my early years. Sometime when I was young, I dreamed that we were being attacked by bees, and when they stung they left holes in us. The only safe place was to climb on top of the picnic table that my grandfather made. It was in the southern California yard. I could picture it well. There was the block fence that separated the yard from my dad’s junkyard, our swing set, the play house, a large tree, and grass. I would run from the house and jump off the steps to get to the picnic table as quickly as possible. I had this dream many times over the years, and it’s probably why I was so afraid of bees.

19) A confession: Day 56.5.2

I have been thinking and thinking and I haven’t come up with a confession for the challenge. I have very personal confessions to make, but they will never appear here.

I know that many people make a confession like a personal statement. But, I can’t come up with one of those either.

It is you get what you get. I am pretty open, so I don’t have a lot to confess.

I do make bold unsupported statements when talking with others without really thinking things through. I don’t even truly believe the statement before I make it, but it comes tumbling out of my mouth. I often have to remind myself that I only know a person or event as I have witnessed it or them. The rest is not supported. Yet, I continue to make these stupid statements. It is like my mouth has a mind of its own and it enjoys making a fool of myself.

18) If I won the lottery…: Day 55.2

If I won the lottery, I would pay off my bills, invest, keep working as I am, and hike during the warm months. I would keep working as I am because I enjoy it and I don’t have a lot of hours or hard work. I would be able to let my husband retire to support him as he did me when I was going to school.

I would be able to hike the way I want to and get the lighter weight gear. I would be able to travel the world with my kids and do some of the bucket list things that take more money. I would be able to remodel my house and get more yard work done.

I would donate money to cancer patients as I wanted the Cancer Warriors to be able to do.

I hope that I would stay humble and kind.

17) What makes me sad?: Day 54.2

I don’t get sad often. I do cry at a lot of things and get momentarily sad; however, I don’t really get sad most of the time. The death of a loved one or a pet are what gets me down.  I have seen enough death as most of us have. And, I will see more.   So I focus on other things.

I don’t think I want to discuss any more because it is just a fact of life that none of us want to go through.

16) What makes me happy?: Day 53.5.2

I feel that I am happy most of the time, but really I believe that I am content. My life hasn’t been difficult, but it hasn’t been easy either. I have found that who and what I have in my life make me happy much of the time. I wouldn’t change what I’ve gone through or how I’ve gone through it because I like who I am now.

Sometimes I do feel very happy and that is usually related to my family. When I get to spend one on one time with my kids, husband, or grandkids, I get a rush that is exciting because I can do so much for them or just talk to them for hours. I am excited for days before I see someone special.

Sitting out on my bench in my backyard makes me happy. Listening to the waterfall and birds, feeling the sun warm my skin, and knowing I have nothing that I absolutely have to do is pretty enjoyable too. I don’t get these days often, but when I do, they mean a lot to me.

Making or baking something for a loved one is quite exhilarating too. I get to plan and work on the project and imagine the reaction I am going to get. Then when the reaction comes, I experience it all over again.

It doesn’t take a lot to make me happy. I prefer to look at the sunny side of things and find enjoyment in everything I can. Life is a lot more pleasant that way.

15)My favorite movie: Day 52.2

I have many movies I have enjoyed, but rarely do I find something to say that it is one of my favorites. For a long time, it was a tie among Footloose, Grease, and Flatliners. But I have re-watched them recently, and I find that I don’t enjoy them quite as much as I used to. I think what made them my favorite were the events surrounding them and people I watch them with.914UtF8Hc1L._AC_UY218_ML3_

Now, the first movie I think of is more the character than the movie – Groot  – Guardians of the Galaxy.  The movie was enjoyable overall, but the character meant so much to me. When we went to California Adventures last year, it was the ride I had to go on and the souvenir I had to get.

Groot has so much depth even though he only says three words – “I am Groot.” But the manner in which they were said gives context to what he is meaning. I feel those three words could be used any time I cannot think of what to say.

14) My thoughts on education: Day 51.2

This is a big topic for me. I feel strongly that the right type of education is very important. However, every one requires something just a little bit different from the next making it difficult to fit the education to the student. But as a student ages, there are ways to get the student the right type of education.

First of all, not all our high school students are or should be college bound. Get and keep the career electives in high school. Quit designing the core classes solely on what colleges want. Some students won’t need statistics and calculus.

Find engaging teachers. Teachers who want to teach because of the love of teaching not just because it’s a job or because they are good in the field. This is difficult too, but getting rid of ten-year could make that difference.

Look at the issues in a particular school district, throw away the thinking box, and look for creative solutions. There are so many problems to the education system, but doing what was always done or what everyone else is doing won’t fix it. Each community is different and needs to have an approach that works for them.

These problems and others is what has prompted me to teach a research class based on an education theme. I want my students to consider problems they see in the education system or have even faced themselves, find out what others are saying or  have done, and come up with a unique solution or a call to action that has some definition to it. Hopefully, through this we will see some form of change in the future.