Excellent Blog
2007 Inspiring Blog
Rockin' Girl Blogger

Zoo Lights at the Oregon Zoo: Why Admission Should Not Be Raised (or, another smackdown of Krista Swan)

December 6th, 2015

Steve & I had to do a major smackdown of Krista Swan awhile back. We had to. She’s a friend of child rapist Neil Goldschmidt, and was trying to rally support for him.

No.

No, no, no, no, no.

So when I saw that the Oregon Zoo has decided to raise the (already too high) prices for its annual Zoo Lights festival, I said two words. No, four.

“No, no, Krista Swan again.” OK, that’s five.

Sure enough, she’s quoted in the article, blah, blah, too many people! The lines are too long! So we’ll raise the prices and fewer people (ie — the hoi polloi) won’t show up.

You’re talking about my crowd now, baby. Because there are a lot of working poor, and poor, and kids who are impoverished on the west side, and the east side (the south side, the north side)… And part of their taxes? Paying for the Metro bond that is keeping the elephants enclosed. And sick. On exhibit. (Not in a sanctuary, as promised by the Oregon Zoo when they floated the bond.) Did you stop to think, maybe Zoo Lights was just barely affordable for some families, as it was? It’s a tradition. People like it. That’s why it’s crowded. So why not do timed tickets or something like that? Not oversell tickets. (Where’s the fire marshall when you need him? This venue is over capacity!)

It makes no difference to me, per se (rich people’s phrase) cuz I frickin’ boycott (poor people’s words) the zoo. (See: “elephant sanctuary” bond measure. See: “Free all the animals from their cages!/No matter how new or modern!” — Raffi) (also, see: Krista Swan, zoo publicity flack, Neil Goldschidt fan, etc.)

I want all community events (and Zoo Lights is a community event, in a public facility, largely taxpayer-funded, not just for rich people) to be open to all, not just those with money.

Peace.

wm

Let’s end with a quote, shall we? Wise words, from the film “Pretty in Pink”:

Blaine, to Stef: “You couldn’t buy her, though, that’s what’s killing you, isn’t it? Stef? That’s it, Stef. She thinks you’re shit. And deep down, you know she’s right.”

Favorite Christmas Books, a re-run

December 16th, 2013

ho ho ho

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

Here you go… just in case you missed this when it first ran.

“Video games and
cookies and hot chocolate
It might even snow!”

“Christmas time is here
It might not snow at all, but
We can still rejoice!”

– Christmas haikus from Elf on a Shelf, shortly before he was slain by his bitter enemy, Shelf Monkey

photo of the day

March 24th, 2013

We’re on spring break this week… happy!!!

Crepuscular flash

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

Quick! Cooky Swap!!!

December 12th, 2012

People, I love holiday cookies, is that so wrong? The neighbors came over on Monday when we all had the day off school, and it was the Best Cooky Swap Ever.

Grinch Cookies (add a red M&M to signify “his heart grew three sizes that day”)

Sugar Cookies

Snickerdoodles

Soft Gingersnaps

Gub-Gub Brownies

Bisquick Chocolate Chip Cookies

i will have more, but that’s all for now…

xoxox sweet sweet sweetness,

Wacky Momminess

“welcome to autumn, cussheads”

October 5th, 2012

watermelon

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

(It’s a watermelon, not a gourd, but whatever.)

This one’s for Steve Rawley.

photo of the day

September 16th, 2012

plumping up

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

For dinner: Cheese fondue, and Huevos Mexicanos with fresh pico de gallo made from tomatoes and peppers from the garden.

Beautiful weekend, happy family, bliss.

Have a great week, y’all, and L’Shana Tova.

– wm

obligatory vacation pictures

July 25th, 2012

Black Butte Ranch in Central Oregon is about fun. We had a great time with the in-laws, and now I’m back to daydreaming about our next trip. I’ll write more later, but for now, pictures! (Steve posted a full set.) The house we rented was built in 1984 by someone who was thoroughly trained up in the ’60s and ’70s. It felt exactly — right down to the art, the fake flowers and the carpet — like my grandparents’ house. Either set. They even had the same sampler on the wall my Dad’s Mom had in her guest room:

“Friends, you are welcome here
be at your ease
get up when you’re ready
go to sleep when you please
we’re happy to share with you such as we’ve got
the leaks in the roof and the soup in the pot
you don’t have to thank us or laugh at our jokes,
sit deep and come often
you’re one of the folks”

Thanks. I appreciate that.

Mom and twins

deer leap

Broken Top, South Sister, North Sister

Meadow sunset

(Photos by Steve Rawley)

summer to-do list

June 4th, 2012

This is from last year (June 20th, 2011) and oh yeah that’s right, we’re going for it again this summer!

– wm

i’m copying everyone else, cuz they’re coming up with such good ideas. I’ll cross them off as we do them.

* celebrate last day of school with dinner out, ice cream, a trip to Powell’s and staying up all night (grown-ups will sleep)

* eat fudgsicles

* swim!

* swim

* did I mention swimming?

* trip to Denver to see grandma ??? (maybe she will visit us here instead)

* trip to Iowa Central Oregon to see grandpa and grandma

* house party!

* eat the first fresh strawberry from the garden

* go for walks in the neighborhood and look for deer, hawks, snakes, frogs and… ???

* picnics at the park

* read on the chaise lounge

* drink iced tea and lemonade and iced tea with lemonade

* go to the drive-in

* farmers market!

* go see live theater outdoors. somewhere. where???

* visit the zoo

* go camping

* go to the beach

* finish proofreading my novel finish writing new novel I started (Young Adult)

* get it published

* start next book (cookbook) then start writing another book!

* celebrate my daughter’s birthday, my birthday and our wedding anniversary

yay to summer.

– wm

ps the comments are from last year. hi girls! i can’t figure out how to allow comments on this post again, so sorry.

exercise, weight, Carnie Wilson and me.

May 13th, 2012

Meanwhile, at the haunted rink

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

i kinda love that picture. Happy Mother’s Day, to you mothers out there ;)

I thought today I would write about a subject that’s near and dear to Americans: morbid obesity. Oh, wait… we like our french fries and beer in this country, so very, very, much. Along with our weight loss surgeries. So is weight truly an issue that can be described as “near and dear” to us? Discuss amongst yourselves — I have reality TV to move along to.

I’ve been working out pretty much every day for a long time now. Months? A year? Who knows. I walk on the treadmill and do yoga, mainly. Go for hikes and walks with Steve and the kids, and sometimes make it to the rec center for aqua aerobics. (Zumba! Shake those ta-ta’s, ladies…) I tivo a lot of stuff, but I still run out of crap to watch. Which is why I ended up watching the new TV Guide (?) reality show, “Wilson Phillips, Still Holding On.” Carnie Wilson (daughter of Beach Boy Brian) hates exercise, she sez. Carnie and her sister Wendy Wilson, and Chynna Phillips (daughter of Michelle and John, Mamas & the Papas) are always in a fight. They have their children to raise, their husbands to try to pressure into getting vasectomies, and also? They live in California. It is stressful there, apparently, with all the driving and birthday parties.

Plus they’re trying to make a comeback, and they’re all in their 40s now.

Girls, I feel ya. So Carnie decides to get another weight reduction surgery done, even tho she’s already gained back 2/3rds of the weight she lost with the last one. Girl, i don’t feel ya on this one, but que sera, sera. Just go for some long walks; it’s easier. I’m not into running — i blew out the ACL on my right knee, skiing, and it hurts when i run. It also hurts when i have extra weight on my bod. But unlike Carnie, i f*&@!ng hate surgeons, doctors, hospitals, and i think i would have to be unconscious and toted there before you’ll get me near one again.

it must be tough when weight is something you’ve struggled with your whole life. Chynna Phillips was being quite rude and giggling about going to visit Carnie at the “fat farm” when they were kids. With “sisters” like that, who needs enemies?

i was lucky enough to not experience being a heavy kid. also lucky to have two skinny parents, who ate right, exercised because they liked to move around, and weren’t weirdos about food. I’ve never been more than 30 pounds overweight, and by American standards, I’m svelte. Ha. American standards need to be revised. Thirty extra pounds is uncomfortable. Two extra pounds is uncomfortable. I’ve lost about 20, gained back 6, whatever. I love sugar, and if you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know i love to bake, especially when i’m stressed out. Chocolate therapy.

i danced as a kid, always rode my bike, hiked, backpacked, swam, have done yoga since I was 17. i’m not a jock, but i like to move. Even so, it was hard for me to get enough exercise because i was having health problems and the kids were little. We lived in a cruddy neighborhood before, and i had all these visions of taking the kids and dog out for walks and oh! lovely exercise! Yeah. That worked until the dog kept getting attacked by shepherds, pit bulls, boxers and various other doggie fiends. I had a pit bull lunge at me once when i was alone and just about had a heart attack. The neighborhood was polluted (lots of industrial traffic) and my asthma sucked and it was a total hassle to get to the gym because 1) we didn’t have a lot of extra income to pay for a membership and 2) while everyone was pretty happy to dump their kids on me, no one seemed all that keen on babysitting my kids. Even though, hello, my kids are mellow and your kid just trashed my house are you f&@!#ng kidding me?

But i digress.

i was scrawny for years — 5’10″ by the time I was 15. I remember walking home from school (theme in my life ;) I’ve always walked a lot) and having my hip pop right out of the socket. I took my hand and popped it smack back in and kept walking. Ouch. That happened more than once. I was growing so fast, everything was loose and limber. I’ve had thyroid problems (hypo and hyper, so alternating between being exhausted/unable to sleep, restless/listless and go-go-go). I didn’t realize my calcium and potassium were messed up because my doctors were quacks and no one bothered to refer me to a specialist. I didn’t even know what an endocrinologist was until years later. I had my throat cut the first time when i was 14. I had my throat cut for the 2nd (and hopefully, last) time when I was 27. i had my tonsils out when i was 6, c-sections when the babies were born (they were both 10-pounders) and had a long-needed hysterectomy a few years ago. Along the way i had to have a bunch of “procedures” and “bloodwork” and “tests for cancer” (i’m good, thanks) and all kinds of other invasive shit.

so let’s stop for a moment to ponder all that. I hate the health stuff.

But you know what hurt the most? My sister, screaming “You’re a fat f!@#$ng cow!” at me in my own kitchen. With my own kids right in the next room.

1) Am not fat f!@#$ng cow, thank you.
2) If someone is, you think they don’t already know that?
3) Not helpful, and kind of destroyed our relationship, along with some other crap.

So Chynna, that’s nice that you’re skinny and blonde and all, but sweetheart? Please don’t lord it over people. Work on the humility a little bit.

what has helped me (please talk to a doctor, though, i’m not a professional here):

1) drinking more water

2) getting enough sleep

3) the kids getting older, so I don’t have to arrange care for them in order to work out

4) having a treadmill in my office. I get up early sometimes, use it while i’m watching TV, or late at night, even, if i can’t sleep. 5 minutes, 10 minutes, a full hour, whatever. I go until I unwind.

5) working my yoga practice so it’s just mine. I can’t stand “competitive yoga” and haven’t done an inversion in years. I get dizzy, have extremely low blood pressure, and get embarrassed by how stiff I am. So i do a weigh-in on the scale in my bathroom and the Wii every day, do yoga and work-outs with the Wii and my favorite TV yoga teacher, Priscilla Patrick. I do it how much I want to, when I want to, and I customize it every day so it suits me.

6) I try to walk on the treadmill or out in the neighborhood for an hour a day, but if it’s less, who cares. If it’s more, that’s fine, too. All of this can be hard to start, but once i got into a routine i was okay. Now I know if i’m stressing out it’s cuz i need to stretch or go for a walk. Usually the endorphins kick in after 20 minutes or so, but damn. Sometimes it’s an hour! Then i think, That was a lot of stress to release, but it’s gone now.

7) eating right. my cousin taught me the “take 6″ trick. She fills up a platter with pea pods, baby carrots, grape tomatoes, asparagus, whatever she wants. Makes a dip out of BBQ sauce and Thousand Island dressing and puts it in the middle, then tells my little cousins to take 6 pieces. It works and is really pretty to look at, too. I like protein shakes, but i don’t drink them every day. I try to have one meal a day that’s just a protein shake (with yogurt, fruit and lots of ice), OR soup (if it’s cream soup, a lot of calories, with a handful of croutons, no i do not care. (and sometimes it is just a simple bowl of vegetable soup, which has, what 40 calories? ha, and that’s fine, too) OR cereal (i’m like a 6-year-old about cereal) (non-fat milk) OR a salad. I’m not into bacon or bleu cheese dressing, but I do like chicken, or taco salads (plain yogurt, usually, instead of sour cream).

That works, if you just sub out a few meals. Don’t torture yourself, life is too short.

8) I stopped drinking any and all booze. I’m hypoglycemic, on verge of diabetes. The mixers and the white wine (with its sugar) were doing a lot of damage. I didn’t drink very much, and have always been a lightweight, but even that small amount was doing damage. I also was having a hard time working out because even 10 or 15 minutes would make me dizzy as hell and sick. Duh, it was low blood sugar, along with the damn low blood pressure. So now i stop and have yogurt, a banana, a rice cake or an orange, and that helps. Sometimes I just say forget it, eat a real meal and then work out half an hour later.

9) i feel good. mainly because anybody in my head, screaming at me? I imagine that I’m putting them, their words, their put-downs and all the rest, into a big manila envelope. I seal it shut, and in my head, walk it out to the trash and put it in there. Then I shut the lid. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. Because you wouldn’t want to take something out of the trash and keep it, would you now? So the next time it starts to run through my head, I remind myself, Naw, that’s trashed, remember? It works, try it sometime.

Carnie, I love you.

– nancy

conversations with my kid

February 3rd, 2012

It’s true, what people say. The best time to catch up with your kid is right after school.

My 4th grader, yesterday afternoon: “The school counselor came in and we learned about segregation. Usually we just learn about bullying. We talked about why it’s not good to leave somebody out just because of… something. Some of us got stickers” (holds up his hand and shows me the sticker that’s plastered to it).

“Yeah, they’re scratch n sniff, they smell like Play-Doh. Then the kids got asked, How did you feel about that? And they were all, Oh, it was really bad, it was unfair. But really, they were lying. They were glad they got stickers and the other kids didn’t.”

me: “Do you think the lesson was maybe because of Black History Month?”

kid: “Nope. And that’s how we got… Punxsutawney Phil!

And then we had a talk about Malcolm, and Dr. King.

Next Page »