Showing posts from June, 2016

Disney World: They're Gone And I'm Okay With That

I wrote about the attractions that I missed, so I thought it only fair that I write about what I'm "glad" (which may be too strong a word) is gone.  Change is a constant at Disney World.  Sometimes (in my opinion) that's actually a good thing.  I'm sure there will be plenty of disagreeing, but here's what I DON'T miss: Snow White's (Scary) Adventures:  I know it was a longtime favorite for many; a dark attraction that could be scary if you were under 10.  (I know when I rode it in Disneyland as a kid I was a bit freaked by the witch.)  It lacked the charm that you can find in Peter Pan's Flight or the late great Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (or even its replacement The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh).   The Magic of Disney Animation:  While it might have been cool to see actual animators doing "their thing," it was also a little zoo like.  ("See honey, let's look at the nice man d

What I Miss At Disney World

(I started to write this before the sad incident at WDW and recent horrific events in Orlando. As always I want to focus on the positive and not the negative.  This post is a reflection of MY personal experiences.  Please keep that in mind and any comments should be about what I have written and not about recent circumstances.  Thank you.) After nearly five years my family is finally taking a much needed week long family vacation.  It has initially been my goal to do this for my birthday, but that clearly wasn't going to work out with school, so we scheduled some time this summer to return to my happy place, also known as the Happiest Place on Earth, Disney World. This is where my husband and I honeymooned back in 1996.  It's where we spent our first anniversary.  Where we traveled regularly before my son was born (and when finances were better for our family).  We even had Annual Passes one year.  (And we used them to the best of our ability; logging in nearly a month

No More Pencils; No More Books...

The school year is over.  And I am so OVER 5th grade.  I feel like a weight has been lifted off my whole family. I've never felt this way about a school year before.  But then again my son was never in middle school before.  This year has been a difficult one and I have not been very impressed with how middle school went.  However, this was my first experience, so maybe some of you out there can give me feedback on what I consider the good, the bad and the ugly.  (Maybe I'm just missing something; let me know!) This year the school was divided into 2 "houses" and you would stay with your house for all four years.  It wasn't a competitive thing (except for the end of the year field day).  It was supposed to give students a core group of teachers who could better get to know and work with your child.  These teachers would have dedicated time to meet with each other and know what was going on in the house in general.  Maybe th

I Will Miss The Park

I am leaving my current position and moving to a new company soon.   That's not to say that I'm unhappy with where I am (or was), but a new opportunity arose elsewhere and so I am trodding out a new path.  There are several things that I will miss such  the people (a company cannot be a good one without good and caring people; I have been blessed to work with some truly wonderful people over the past several years.  There are too many to name; you know who you are!) and the commute (20-25 minutes on local roads).  But most of all I will miss the park. My current office is in an old industrial park.  There are 18 wheelers coming in and out all the time.  There is lots of dust and dirt. (My car hasn't been clean since I started working here!)  But just five minutes away by car, or fifteen if I walk, is an oasis.  A park with a small lake and lots of space.  I can walk around, but mostly I like to find a park bench (and there are plenty of them), sit down and read on my l

We Need to Stop Teaching...

Education is incredibly important, whether it be at home or in an institution.  But there is one thing we need to STOP teaching.  And Oscar Hammerstein II eloquently lyricized it back in the 1940s: "You've got to be taught To hate and fear, You've got to be taught From year to year, It's got to be drummed In your dear little ear You've got to be carefully taught. You've got to be taught to be afraid Of people whose eyes are oddly made, And people whose skin is a diff'rent shade, You've got to be carefully taught. You've got to be taught before it's too late, Before you are six or seven or eight, To hate all the people your relatives hate, You've got to be carefully taught!" Yet we're still being taught the lessons of hatred.  "They" are not like us.  Their skin is a different color. Their sexual orientation does not fit "our norm."  Their religion is not ours.  They speak a d

One Final Sermon: What I've Learned

  Deuteronomy 6 4 - 7 4  “Hear, O Israel: The  Lord  our God, the  Lord  is one.[ b ]  5  You shall love the  Lord  your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  6  And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.  7  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.  Psalm   119: 33- 35; 105 Teach me, O  Lord , the way of your statutes;   and I will keep it to the end.[ f ]  34   Give me understanding, that I may keep your law     and observe it with my whole heart.  35  Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it. Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Isaiah   40: 28-31: Do you not know?     Have you not heard? The  Lord  is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.  He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.    9 He gives s

A Vote With No Confidence

Its primary day here in NJ.  As always I got my vote out (wasn't #1 in line as usual, but I suppose there's nothing wrong with being #2).  I encourage everyone to get out there and make their voice heard.  But I have to be honest, with this primary I was tempted NOT to vote.  It seems like the decision has been made for the presidential election this November.  But even if the person I feel would be the best to fill the role, I have an obligation to get out there and vote.  I don't HAVE to cast my vote for who the SUPPOSED nominee is.  I can vote for someone else (even if they are not officially still in the race).  Is it a wasted vote?  Maybe.  But hopefully it also sends a message.  My message today is that I'm NOT happy with the way things are going (in either party).  Will my message be heard?  Maybe; maybe not.  But I felt I had to do it. But it's not just about the presidential nominees in today's primary, although the media might have you think s

A Journey Ends

Today, a nearly three-year journey ended for me and for five other people who I can happily call friends.  It has been a long and exhausting trek.  But today the fruits of our blood, sweat and tears were rewarded.  (Believe me, there was a lot of blood, sweat and tears!) Today, the congregation to which I belong, voted to call and install a new pastor.   When I was initially asked  to be on the Interim Pastor Nominating Committee, I never imagined it would turn into a 3 year run.  I don't think anyone did.  But as we made our way, mostly unguided, becoming the Designated Pastor Nominating Committee and eventually the Pastor Nominating Committee we NEVER gave up.  We fought.  We disagreed.  We laughed.  We cried.  We often felt as though we were lost and abandoned (not by God, but our domination's hierarchy).  But we never gave up.  I know MY faith waivered, but I had the support of 6 other people to guide me through.  (We were a committee of 6, but through the process one

That Dreaded Piece of Junk Mail

When I get home from work, my routine is generally to throw my bags down on a chair and go through the mail.  Like most people (I'm assuming), I get my share of junk mail.  Most days I don't even look at it; it just goes in the toss bin.  Sometimes I get a little curious (just a little) and I open an envelope that I know contains nothing good.   I don't know what possessed me the other day to open an envelope.  I knew it was some sort of junk solicitation, but I opened it.  And inside...(wait for it)...was a letter from AARP!   Now I know the big birthday is just around the corner, but... The whole AARP thing is a misnomer in my book.  You can join at 50.(Although they start soliciting much earlier than that; or so I am told.  My husband said he got his first piece of AARP mail shortly after he got his first full time job.  He was 20 at the time!)  But how many people are actually RETIRED at that age?   This may be one of the reasons why the group goes by A

You Can Put Lipstick on a Pig...

...but it's still a pig, right? Well this girl is no longer a pig and happy to be wearing lipstick again! If you read last Friday's post, you'll remember that I didn't have that despite nearly 50 years of experience, I still didn't have that walking thing down. ( One of the worst things was the "cement burn" that I had on my upper lip.  Blood continued to gush out of it for over an hour.  (Which was an eternity in my mind.)  A little ice helped with the swelling, but the day after the fall I still had puffy lip and an ugly scab that would open up if I laughed or smiled.  (A problem for me, as I LIKE to smile/laugh and do so frequently throughout the day.)  Not to mention the fact that it hurt. But here I am, a week later and I am able too wear lipstick.  The ugliness has pretty much abated.  (If you get close to me you can still see some of the remaining scab.)  Furth

Remembering the Js

June is a bittersweet month for me.  Lots of great stuff happens in June.  First there's my birthday. (It's next Tuesday; please feel free to send extravagant gifts! :)  ).  My father's birthday is right after that, and is quickly followed by Father's Day.  June is the end of the school year. (I am so over 5th grade; maybe even more so than my son!)  June is the beginning of summer!  (Woo hoo!  Days at the beach.   Swimming at the pool!  Inhaling the wonderful scent of Coppertone!) But June also marks the anniversaries of the passing of two very important people in my life:  My Uncle Jimmy (after whom my son is named) and my brother John.  Both passed from this life suddenly and far too soon.  Both were larger than life, with smiles and personalities that could light up a room.   The last time I saw them both together was at my wedding in September 1996.  (Getting together wasn't easy; while my brother and the rest of my immediate family live on the east co

Bathroom Etiquette 101

I currently work for a relatively small company.  There are probably two dozen people who work in the building with me.  It's an old industrial complex; hence the offices are not glamorous.  (But then again neither am I!).   In this old warehouse of a building, there are two single person bathrooms.  One is marked for men and one for women.  However, necessity often requires that men use the ladies or vice versa.  (I'm sure as you all know...when you gotta go, you gotta go!)  There's no difference between the two bathrooms.  They both contain a toilet (there I said it!), a sink, a mirror, and a garbage can.  That's it. Let's face it, do you really need more?  (Maybe you want more and certainly I could go for a fancier atmosphere, but it does the job.)  There's no worry about who is using what bathroom; just find the one with the open door, lock it behind you and do what you have to do. (And really isn't that what the bathroom SHOULD be about.) I hon