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Thursday Thirteen, back from the dead…

May 24th, 2012

Busy Beavers

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

Nan wrote a Thursday Thirteen about all the things buzzing around in her head, so I will, too. (I didn’t know Thursday Thirteen was still around :) Happy about this!)

If you write one, too, leave me a note so I can go visit. This one is kind of serious, sorry. It just came out that way.



1) My husband took that picture. He takes all of the incredible pictures you see on my blog. I just write. Ha!

2) Looking forward to a four-day weekend! The schools here (Washington Co., Oregon) dealt with budget issues by declaring “furlough days.” Next school year, we’re looking at massive teacher lay-offs. Bad, bad, bad. But we live in a country that likes to spend money on bombs and fighter jets instead of kids, food and health care. We also live in a state where people don’t think they should have to pay property taxes, so there you go. I personally would opt for the kids, food and medical, but what do I know? I’m just a woman who doesn’t believe in war and hunger. Anyway, the district figured out the schedule very nicely. Since we have Monday off for Memorial Day, they gave us Friday off, too.

3) Whenever I start writing anything nowadays, I always tell myself, Keep it cheerful. Fact is, that’s difficult most days. This is the world we live in — where people who speak out against war are seen as freaks; where drug/alcohol abuse are the norm; where it’s OK that kids can’t afford to go to college, and are terrified to take out loans to pay for it. What is wrong with this picture?

4) OK. I planted a bunch of flowers in the yard — they look nice. We had some gorgeous, sunny weather, then a lot of rain, so the new plantings are soaking it all up and thriving.

5) Every day at around this time, I can hear the hawks shrieking as they fly overhead. It is a gift. Thanks, Mother Nature. My son was telling me on the way home from the library, Look at all we have out here! Bunnies, snakes, frogs, coyotes, hawks, ducks… wow!

6) My kids see every day as a gift. This is a good way of looking at life.

7) We checked out a ton of movies and a couple of books from the library: Hepburn & Tracy, “Cinema Paradiso,” “The Ides of March.” I finally re-started reading “Life of Pi,” by Yann Martel. It’s awfully good. Next up: more Dickens.

8) Recipes? OK. Here is an oldie but goodie. Crepes… mmmmmm… crepes…

9) The windows are open — I can hear the neighbor kids hollering. It’s almost summer… summer break… my birthday (48, damn! Two years from 50, woo-hoo ;)… our garden is already flourishing — herbs, potatoes, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries all coming on, along with the peas that we planted too late but are doing wonderfully, in spite of our negligence. Radishes… green onions… and tomato and pepper starts waiting to be planted. I love the Pacific Northwest for a lot of reasons, and gardening is always at the top of the list.

10) My daughter just finished up her spring session of art classes. She made some beautiful work this semester. She, like her Dad, is quite the photographer. Our house has turned into a showcase for their work.

11) My novel is trucking along. I’m hoping we wrap up my Grandma’s cookbook/memoir soon, and a friend is going to put together some illustrations for the children’s book I wrote. All good.

12) I am psyched for all the TV season/series finales that have been on. (No spoilers! I promise.) I have never watched so much TV in my life, not even when I was a kid. “Desperate Housewives” is over and done. Not everyone liked the series finale, but I thought it worked, especially the last ten minutes. “Revenge” had a great run — looking forward to seeing where they go with it next season. “American Idol” and the Stanley Cup hockey play-offs are both stressing me out in different ways. It’s only a game! (Music and sports having more than a few similarites.) (So why am I on the couch, holding my breath?)

13) If you’d like to read any of the other Thursday Thirteens I’ve written, head over to the sidebar — they have their own category, and apparently this is the 89th entry! Whoa.

Happy Thursday, everyone!

thursday thirteen!!! only 2 days late… and a loving tribute to Cocoon Silk, the most beautiful wedding dresses on the West Coast

October 31st, 2009

i thought it was gone, but it’s not — thursday 13, alive & kickin’… so i’d better write one, eh? In honor of Halloween and my baby sister’s impending nuptials, I present:

The Wacky Mommy Thursday Thirteen, Halloween Edition, with an emphasis on WEDDING DRESSES

1) my sister, when we were in the middle of wedding dress shopping today, “You know who hates shopping more than us? Mom. Mom hates shopping more than we do.”

2) she does. our mom hates shopping. my sister isn’t keen on shopping and i’m not, either. especially since i have more boob, hip and BUTT now. Awwwwwww, it’s the New Old Wacky Mommy Body.

3) Did I tell you Happy Halloween yet? No? Happy Halloween! We’re celebrating by eating miniature candy bars, chocolate chip cooky bars, and later, we will have some kind of non-chocolate related feast for dinner. Steve is drinking a Red Stripe and I’m enjoying my 2nd nice glass of white wine. Abymes Vin de Savoie, 2008, from France. me: “mmm, this is nice!” steve: “honey. it’s cheap white French table wine. you need to branch out from the pinot grigio.” he’s right, i do.

4) My other new favorite: Trevisiol Prosecco Venteto, Extra Dry, from Small Vineyards, Seattle, Wash. We drink it with a splash of grapefruit juice, with a sugar cube dropped in, in a sugared-rim martini glass. (that idea was from Brian Boitano. i love his show, “What Would Brian Boitano Make?” on the Food Network. This Amaretto Prosecco Sour also sounds good.)

5) i believe my mom and sister are coming over to have Halloween dinner with us and take the kids out tricker treating. fun!

6) Do you celebrate Halloween? Day of the Dead? Some kind of harvest festival? Please advise.

7) OK, back to wedding dresses. My sister, just six weeks shy of her wedding date, has been a little nervous about the whole “wedding dress” portion of the occasion. I was, too, after we visited a stuck-up shop (i will not include their name here). (oh, what the hell of course I will. Tower Bridal, not to be confused with Tower Records, at the Water Tower at John’s Landing. Really should have read the reviews first, which included this gem, under the heading, “Don’t Shop Here” — “I will never ever recommend this place to anyone. When I went here looking for a dress they were nothing but rude to me. I didnt have a crap load of money to spend which can become a problem when looking at dresses. Some bridal shops dont like dealing with people on a budget and this is definately one.” I do not care if she can’t spell, that is one zinger of a review.)

8) So. They were rude there. I especially loved when the sales associate sized me up with her eyes, glanced over at the maid of honor dresses, glanced back at me and gave me a look like, “It’ll never work.” Here’s the thing: I’m not a size 2. I’m not even a size 10. The point is, I still like to look good. Who doesn’t? And it’s my sister’s wedding! Outfit us, alright? We went to a vintage place in Northwest Portland. I found two great purses, one for me, one for my sis. Then we went to another vintage place. Neither place carried wedding dresses. “It is kind of a niche,” we were told. A niche. Would it kill you to have a rack with a couple of dozen wedding dresses? Apparently it would. It would kill them, and then they would be dead and they couldn’t sell their moldy fake-fur coats and ’70s retro Marimekko knock-offs.

9) Discouraged and with no prospects, we went to Sushiville and had a delicious lunch. (For those of you keeping score: Tower Bridal: two thumbs down; vintage shops, thumbs akimbo (cuz of the purses); Sushiville: BIG thumbs up.)

10) wandered down 23rd Avenue. saw a wedding dress hanging in a window of a boutique, Cocoon Silk. “Wanna check it out?” “OK.” Full selection of dresses, scarves, shoes, prom dresses, party dresses, dresses for little girls, big girls, mothers of the bride… jewelry… Oh. my God. “Do you have this in my size?” my sister asks, about gorgeous dress after gorgeous dress, each one more spectacular than the last. “Well…” the salesclerk tells us, “Those are samples. We custom-make the dresses for you. It will take about three weeks? That’s how we do it in Cambodia, you make the dress to fit.”

11) That is how we all three, my sister, my daughter and I, all are completely won over by Sovanna Yun, whose family is now sewing our dresses. Black cocktail dress for me, with a blue shawl, decorated with peacocks, sequins and fringe; for my daughter, a blue dress with a matching silk ruffle bolero jacket; and my sister will be the one in white (it is a secret, thus I cannot describe it). The Red-Headed Guy is wearing a vintage suit; my husband and son will be in black.

12) That’s Cocoon Silk, and they have two locations in Portland. You can also just send them your measurements and some cash and they, in turn, will send you a stunning dress. You know how he made me feel about my body? He made me feel beautiful about my body. It’s a good body. It’s not perfect, it’s scarred, it’s too curvy — but it’s what I’ve got.

13) So… no attitude from this place. Just beauty. Go figure.

Happy Thirteen and Happy Halloween, y’all! Best wishes to my sis and her guy.

Thursday Thirteen: Best Study and Work Habits

July 9th, 2009

Happy Thursday 13, to all you usual suspects. I haven’t been over here for a long time, sorry! Bad blogger. Bad.

This morning, I am once again putting off studying. How am I ever going to make it through grad school if I can’t even get through this one little class? I am tormenting myself and the Internet. How am I going to teach my kids good study habits, for middle school, high school and college? I had a hard time my first two years at college (Portland State University, gooooo Vikings!) because before I could pass any classes I had to learn to study.

Now, I realize that it’s summer, and for some people, school is the last thing on their minds. But I am hoping to be accepted into a graduate teaching program, and get a dual endorsement to be a media specialist (aka: Librarian), too. For educators, summer means time to take those extra classes and brush up on your skills. And for those of you who are parents… reading abilities tend to fall behind in the summer, but math skills really take a hit. Why bother, when there are all those good video games to play, right? Please do what you can to keep your kids’ heads in the game, so to speak.

Here are some tips, for yourself or anyone who might need them. These can also be tailored for work situations… Hope they help!

1) Focus. I try to work out every morning, even if it’s just a little deep breathing and yoga to stretch. A walk helps, or better yet a run. Once your head is clear you can make a plan.

2) Have a snack, make a cup of tea, grab a bottle of water, use the restroom — no excuses to get up once you’re studying.

3) Have everything ready — post-its, sharpened pencils, a notebook to take notes, index cards. I’ve been using index cards to scribble down definitions. My class is Psychology 311, Human Development, and my term paper — only five pages, not too bad! — is to write down my life story, with “explicit reference to the facts, principles, and theories presented in the text.” First of all, that’s crazy. Second of all, I’m a blogger! I can deal.

4) Find a spot where you won’t be tempted to take a nap.

5) Read. Read, read, read. Blink. Read, read, read. Blink. It takes me sometimes a half an hour to really get into my textbook.

6) I try to put myself into my kids’ shoes. (They are going into 2nd and 5th grade.) They truly have no incentives to do homework. They know they’re not going to flunk, even if they bail on their homework half the time. It’s boring. Worksheets are usually involved. It’s too easy. Or too hard. Or too, uh, boring? Yeah, that’s it, Mom! They are not being challenged! Now this one especially pertains to work. No one likes the drudge work. No one. But it has to be done. So I try to stress to my kids that they can’t just cherry-pick their assignments — sometimes it takes pages of drudge work before you get to the fun or interesting stuff.

7) Don’t complain, whine or have a fit. The work could be done in the time spent doing that.

8) Rewards are good. I know after I finish this class, my employer will reimburse me the $400+ I plunked down for the class. If I bail on the class, I don’t get reimbursed. That is a good incentive. For younger kids, it can be something as small as a sticker chart, a nice dinner out, a trip to the park, or maybe baking cookies. For bigger kids? I’m sorry, but you might have to be mean. No TV time, no techno toys, no sleepovers unless that homework is getting done.

9) Try not to let anything stand in your way — the phone, someone dropping by (your house or your desk at work), drama… keep it at bay. When you let others know how important your studying (or project) is to you, they will back off and (hopefully) the interruptions will dwindle. (Edited to say: I forgot the most important thing — unless you’re using the computer for research (my class, for instance, has cool flashcards I can access online. They helped so much with the two tests I’ve taken so far) — STAY OFF THE COMPUTER. NO blogs, Facebook, e-mail, nada.)

10) Pace yourself. Set aside chunks of time for various parts of the project, or schedule study blocks so you don’t have to pull any all-nighters. My kids had three or four big projects apiece this year. (First and fourth grade! Please. I thought that was a little too much pressure.) Dino reports, speeches, animal projects — it was crazy. So we charted it out: Diorama materials gathered up one night; diorama assembled the next night. Index cards compiled; speech outlined; speech written. I think they’re going to be ready for college in three years, at this rate.

11) Another thing — don’t pressure yourself or your kids too much. Relax. At the end of the year, I finally started drawing lines through my son’s homework. (Huge packets, weekly.) He’d finish a chunk of it, then another chunk. I would draw a line through whatever didn’t get finished, initial it, and write a note for the teacher saying, “This is as much as we were able to complete in the hour we spent on homework three nights this week.” It is insane the pressure that is put on kids now.

12) That being said, it has become necessary now more than ever to learn to get along/go along. (There are a lot of us out here who feel lucky to even have a job, or be able to go to school.) Life and work — what are you going to do, you know? The bills need to get paid, the classes need to be completed. Working as part of a small group? You can expect that at least one person will bail out and “let” the others do the work. Just do the work to the best of your ability and get on with things. It will be obvious to whoever is in charge (teacher, boss, supervisor) who was and wasn’t responsible.

13) Look on the bright side — it’s pretty cool to pull off something you didn’t want to deal with, or thought you couldn’t handle. That sense of completion is pretty satisfying.

OK, off to study now.


Thursday Thirteen Ed. #171: My Favorite Underpants, Through the Years

November 19th, 2008

Panties! Panties are great, aren’t they? Here, just in time for a long-overdue Thursday Thirteen, are my top thirteen pairs, known or admired, over the years. (more…)

Thursday Thirteen: We Love Summer

July 9th, 2008

thirteen things we love about summer, here at Chez Wacky:

1) riding bikes
2) eating ice cream
3) hanging all the laundry outside
4) coffee and breakfast with my husband at the patio table
5) potatoes, tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, geraniums, zinnias, begonias and hot peppers in the garden
6) cold showers
7) going to the ocean
8) swimming every day
9) playing in the dirt
10) staying up ’til midnight
11) playing baseball and tennis
12) playing all kinds of games
13) hot summer nights

Happy Thursday, everyone!



My Thursday 13, Ed. #something: a few thoughts

June 18th, 2008

random bullets for my Thursday 13:

1) Iowa is settling down. Now it’s everyone along the Mississippi we need to worry about. Life is getting too crazy, weather-wise, with the tornadoes and flooding and fires and whatnot. (If you want to see a YouTube video of the “Book Brigade,” look here.)

2) It’s my birthday next week. (more…)

Thursday Thirteen, Ed. #142: Zoo Snooze

April 23rd, 2008

Thirteen Things I Loved About Sleeping at the Zoo

My little Girl Scout and I spent the night at the Oregon Zoo awhile back — they have these overnighters called “Zoo Snoozes.” There were a few things I didn’t like. Sleeping in a conference room, aka Cold Concrete Bunker, with a bunch of Girl Scouts and their mommies who we didn’t know from Adam; the cold (it was early February), the rain (this being Portland). The “continental breakfast” — fruit loops and donuts. Yick. But mostly? It was a blast.

1) We got to walk around. In the dark. And say hi to the animals.

2) The giraffe? The giraffe is such a sweetheart. They let us go into the keeper’s room — he stuck his head through an open window so he was eye-level with us. Big purple tongue, big sweetie of a beast. He is lonely for attention — he lost his partner and doesn’t have a friend anymore. He seemed to really like the kids, and the company.

3) We made “cookies” out of meat for the Sun Bears.

4) We went into the icy-cold freezer to see all the zoo food, and they gave us a nutrition lesson in the zoo kitchen. Monkey chow? Zebra chow? Lorikeet nibbles? I had no idea how much prep time went into feeding the staff’s “babies.” (And they really do consider the animals to be family. I was impressed with their courtesy, their respect for the animals, their enthusiasm in talking with the kids about their jobs. A couple of them said, “When I was a kid, I always wanted to work with animals — and now I do!”)

5) We learned a lot about elephants. Elephants, one of the most popular zoo animals, are the one animal you should truly not, never ever, cage. (Ditto jaguars and cheetahs.) They need to walk for miles and miles to keep their feet and legs healthy, and what zoos — even the best zoos — do to elephants is criminal. (Also monkeys. Monkeys at the zoo break my heart.) (I don’t really do so well at the zoo — I want to free all the animals.) (Except the snakes.) (Sorry, snakes.) (And I would probably leave the tarantulas and hissing cockroaches alone.)

6) The kids got to carry around clipboards and do “research” — it was educational for them, observing the animals, trying to guess what they were thinking, about to do next, wanting, etc.

7) The farm animals were fun, especially the little goats and bunnies.

8) I liked having some time alone with my daughter. We try to do one-on-one with the kids as much as we can. It was fun staying up late in our sleeping bags, after a late-night snack of hot cocoa and popcorn, working on our knitting, giggling. She had a lot of fun, and appreciated doing something completely out of the ordinary.

9) The guides (teenagers) were goofy and thoughtful and knew lots of facts. They were great with the little kids.

10) The zoo at night is the perfect place to let your imagination run wild. I jotted some things down in my journal — observations, ideas — it was good.

11) I wanted to bring a hedgehog or monkey in to sleep with us, but no go.

12) In the morning, we found out it had snowed overnight. It was fantastic. The kids were giddy and the grown-ups were, too.

13) We hiked up and out of the zoo, and along the way saw a peacock, feathers out, happy and proud, strutting along the main path. Then we got to see one of the Siberian tigers we hadn’t seen the night before. They like the snow — it’s in their blood. He was so gorgeous and quiet — he lay staring at us for the longest time, as if to say, “Beautiful day here, isn’t it?” It was perfect. I’ve never had eye contact with a tiger before. (I was glad he was waaaaaaaaaay over there and not, you know, right up close.)

Happy Thursday, everyone!



That’s right, they haven’t come back yet
But when they do, they say they are
Going to free all the animals from their cages
No matter how new or modern
Even some pets, too
So if on your way home today
You happen to find…

A baboon basking in the balcony
Or a lion licking a lemon in the lobby
Or a python perched in the pantry
A wildebeest in the W.C.
With a turtle twirling in your tub
Don’t be afraid, just say you’re a friend
Of their friend

Joshua Giraffe, Joshua, Joshua
Joshua Giraffe, Joshua, Joshua
(woo hoo!)

— Raffi

Thursday Thirteen Ed. #141: Random?

April 16th, 2008

Dear Thirteeners and All You Usual Suspects,

Do I remember how fun it is to do a Thursday Thirteen? Why, yes I do. Yes, I do, indeed. I’m copying Holly and going completely random. I mean, more random than usual. A shocker, no? Ready?

1) My daughter was in a play tonight. Two classes of third-graders, dancing and singing their hearts out. My heart may have swelled with pride; my eyes may have swelled with tears. It was pretty damn cute.

2) Afterward, we all, including Wacky Auntie and Wacky Grandma, went out for ice cream. (We used to do this when I was a kid, after my dance recitals.)

3) Everything and I mean everything is starting to bloom in our yard! Heather, tulips, lilies of the valley coming on strong, bleeding hearts, the hanging baskets, the hyacinth. My camellia. I am in love with my camellia and it’s lipstick-pink blooms. Go look at the Flickr pix my husband took. So purty.

4) Did I mention that my daughter tap-danced, sang and even had lines in the play? It made that three-day labor seem like nothing. Three days of labor was cake, considering I ended up with the sweetest daughter ever.

5) A weather report: We are here in Portland, Ore., USA. Our weather has gone something like this for the past month: Sun, rain, snow. Hail, sun, sun, sun, rain. Wind, gray, cold, rain, rain. Sun, rain, 75 degrees, hail. It’s like Mother Nature has left Heat Miser and Snow Miser in charge up there, I’m not kidding.

6) I like my new job. (Working in a school library, yay!) In fact, I like it so much I will not even discuss it because I am worried it will jinx it somehow. I love the kids, I love the books, I love the calm and chaos and thrill of seeing a kid discover a new book, a new author, a new way to look at life. Work that is satisfying is the best thing ever. Enough! No jinxes.

7) Our cats are spring-fever crazy. The birdies had better just watch out.

8) We’re ready for summer to start. How many more days of school? “Sixty-something, or fifty-something,” according to my daughter. (Yay! The kids and I will be on the same schedule for work/school.) (Still not talking about work. Not really, anyway.)

9) My husband and I are the hugest Curb Your Enthusiasm fans now. Also, I love the Wire. I’m only on the first season, though, so no spoilers, eh? It’s intense, but the writing, acting and directing are so top-notch it pays off.

10) I have a stack of fifty books to review. And no time. Kinda funny, that a librarian has no time to read. Ha. (I have been reading a bunch of contemporary kids’ lit, though. I have no idea who many of the new authors are! Leave me suggestions, y’all, in comments. Especially for titles for ages fourth grade and up.)

11) Would you like to hear the story of Super Granny? She is my daughter’s invention. She was born in 1708. That makes her THREE HUNDRED! Her best friend used to be named Little Guy Who Loves Cheese. Now her name (I know, Little Guy, you’d think “he,” but you would be wrong, dear reader) is Little Guy Who Loves Bananas. Cuz they moved to the jungle. Maybe we’ll tell you more next week…

12) Oh. You want more now? OK — Her favorite song is “Yankee Doodle.” And her favorite food is roasted pig.

13) I missed my Thursday Thirteens! Sorry I’ve been out of the loop.



Thursday Thirteen Ed. #137: 13 Fun Facts About Fannie Farmer and Frances Farmer

March 19th, 2008

I was going to write this post two weeks ago, but I got distracted by someone’s smut talk. That’s right. It was her. No, I cannot find the exact post I’m referring to, because I cannot figure out her archives is why. (Blame it on Mac blogs.) Anywho, lots of sex talk, smut talk, shoe talk, California talk over there. Don’t go all crazy.

Thirteeners and Usual Suspects, I am back. And this week, I will make a stunning and daring attempt to visit 50 — yes, fifty — Thursday Thirteen blog posts after I am done here. Wish me luck, because you know how it challenges me when I try to “concentrate” on something for more than 20 minutes at a shot.

Hmmm. Why is this so? I have no idea. All I know is that both Mallory and Rockstar Mommy have given up blogging and I am not so happy about that. It leaves me less than inspired about my own blogging! They inspired me! I am not giving you links to them because what would be the point?

To quote Lewis Grizzard: “Elvis is dead and I don’t feel so good myself.”

Without further kvetching, I present…

Thirteen Fun Facts About Fannie Farmer and Frances Farmer:

1) They are not the same person. They are entirely different chicks.

2) Fannie was a Unitarian, thus my Sunday School lesson on her a couple of weeks back.

3) Throughout the class, I was nervous that I was going to say “Frances” when I meant “Fannie.” Frances was accused of being both an atheist and a Communist. Hmm.

4) Perhaps I should have worked this quote into my lesson? “It was pretty sad, because [after the publication of God Dies] for the first time I found how stupid people could be. It sort of made me feel alone in the world. The more people pointed at me in scorn the more stubborn I got and when they began calling me the Bad Girl of West Seattle High, I tried to live up to it.”

5) Sadly, I did not share that quote with the children. Instead, we made muffin mix:

Mae’s Muffins
Adapted from a recipe by Fannie Farmer, the “Mother of Level Measurements.”

1 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour (or 1 cup of each)
1/3 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 400°. Grease bottoms only of 12 medium muffin cups, 2 1/2 X 1 1/4 inches, or line with paper baking cups. Beat milk, oil, vanilla and egg. Stir in flour, sugar, baking powder and salt mixture all at once just until flour is moistened (batter will be lumpy).

Possible add-ins: 1 cup fresh or drained canned blueberries or 3/4 cup frozen blueberries, thawed and well-drained; chocolate chips or nuts; shredded or chopped apples.

Divide batter evenly among muffin cups. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately remove from pan.

We measured the dry ingredients only into gallon zip-lock bags. The kids thought this was excellent. We accidentally added a half-teaspoon of extra salt into the mix we brought home. No matter! We added shredded, unsweetened coconut for our “add-in,” along with some extra sugar, and it turned out great! We made a pan of it, due to the fact that I couldn’t find our muffin tin. It baked at 350 degrees (then 325 degrees, for the last 20 minutes) for about an hour total. Dee-licious.

6) Fannie Farmer worked as a “mother’s helper” for Little Marcia Shaw (this is how she is named in my book) and taught her to cook! Then she wrote down the recipes for her, and that eventually became the “Boston Cooking School Cook Book.”

7) She taught at the school for many, many years.

8) How many? I have no idea!

9) She also wrote a book called “Food and Cookery for the Sick and Convalescent.” She considered this her most important book. When I am sick, all I want is Pad Thai with shrimps and Tom Kha Gai soup. I am seriously doubting that her Food and Cookery book contains these recipes, so I have no plans for purchasing it. I am sorry, Fannie. Also I have no plans for actually cooking Tom Kha or Pad Thai, cuz we have a number of excellent Thai restaurants in my neighborhood where we can go for take-out.

10) Hmm. More on Frances? She supposedly never had a lobotomy, according to Wikipedia. And Wikipedia, as you know, is next to God. Just ask Michael Scott.

“Western State Hospital recorded all the lobotomies performed during Farmer’s period there. Since lobotomies were considered ground-breaking medical procedure, the hospital did not attempt to conceal its work. Although nearly 300 patients received the procedure, no evidence supports a claim that Farmer was among them.”

Newspaper interviews: In 1983 Seattle newspapers interviewed former hospital staff members, including all the lobotomy ward nurses who were on duty during Farmer’s years at Western State. They confirmed that Farmer did not receive a lobotomy. Nurse Beverly Tibbetts stated, “I worked on all the patients who had lobotomies, and Frances Farmer never came to that ward.” Freeman’s private patient records contained no references to Farmer. Dr. Charles Jones, Psychiatric Resident at Western State during Farmer’s stays, also stated that Farmer was never given a lobotomy.”

11) Fannie? She taught people to measure “exactly” and is known as the “Mother of Modern Measurements.” She and my granny would not get along one bit because my granny does not measure anything. Ever. She uses a measuring cup to dip in the flour, but only if she doesn’t have a coffee cup handy. I have followed in her footsteps, I am happy to say.

12) Frances Farmer’s films include: “Come and Get It,” “The Toast of New York” and “South of Pago Pago.”

13) If I had to choose between dinner with Fannie Farmer and Frances Farmer, I think I’d go for Frances. We could get Thai take-out and discuss our medical histories, amongst other things.

Happy Thursday, y’all!

Thursday Thirteen Ed. #134: Thirteen FRICKIN’ AWESOME THINGS about Disneyland

February 27th, 2008


Dear, long-lost Thursday 13ers and All You Usual Suspects,

How the heck are you, friends? I’ve been… everywhere, man.

“Done laid around, done stayed around
This old town too long;
Summer’s almost gone, winter’s coming on…”

Oh, wait. Winter’s almost over, it’s almost spring. Whatever, it works for me. What does all of this have to do with Disneyland? Nothing. It’s just — we haven’t talked in awhile. I wanted to catch up. Here’s your list:

13 Things I Must Say Blow Me Away About Disneyland

1) They don’t perform weddings anymore next to the castle. How magical is that? Not very. (My friends C & K got married there — so romantic.)

2) The Electrical Parade rocks just as hard as everyone said it would.

3) My kids love it. Love it for 12 hours straight and want to go back the next day for more love it. They’re kinda cynical, for an 8- and 5-year-old (geesh), but not once did I hear “This is boring.”

4) The Tiki Room? Always a hit with me. I don’t care how dusty those birds are, or how hokey it is. If I could have the Tiki Room attached to my house I would be in seventh heaven. Tiki Heaven. Especially with a Pineapple Whip in hand.

5) Large asses. I have never seen so many large asses in my life. We have photos to prove it. (Like we need to. Ha.) “The Asses of Disneyland: A Series.”

6) Pirates of the Caribbean: Betta than evah.

7) Vodka in frozen lemonade? Well, you can have it if you remember to sneak in a flask.

8) Line for Mickey: Way Too Long. Line for Goofy? Not long at all! But he went on break right as Wacky Girl got to the front of the line. Damn dog. “But he shook my hand, it’s OK! Just didn’t sign my book!” All is forgiven, Goofy.

9) Speaking of Toon Town — my daughter went ga-ga for Toon Town — we had to go back twice. I didn’t expect that.

10) Jungle Cruise: Closed for repairs. It’s A Small World: Also closed for repairs. The looks on everyone’s faces: Priceless. (Those are my two favorite rides, though, so I was a little bummed.)

11) Admission? Let’s not discuss that. Instead let’s talk about Downtown Disney…

12) Build-A-Bear: Yes! Build two!

13) Beignets and cafe au lait at the New Orleans place — always a hit.

More on the trip later… Happy Thursday.



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