Momsome Moment: BookCon 2017

superheros 2

Technically, my momsome moment occurred at the end of the day, but a few highlights won’t hurt.

My daughter and I hopped on a bus in Baltimore and headed for New York City. She snapped pictures of cool buildings, the sunrise, etc. I anxiously waited to eat a snack.

Once in New York, we walked to the Javits Center, where the fun began.

In addition tobookcon-with-ryan.jpg listening to Ryan Higa, (the reason we were there), we had Bill Nye and Chelsea Clinton sightings. We also heard talks from: Jeff Kinney, Mary Pope Osborne, Kwame Alexander, Lemony Snicket, and Kevin Hart.

 

Next, we did a little exploring in New York City. We headed to Times Square with a stop off to have our pictures taken with Spiderman and a random stormtrooper. We also side-tripped to the Fox news building, where we saw nothing but the outside of a building. Pedestrian traffic doubled as we neared Times Square, which turned out to be smaller than it looks on TV.

Because I was getting tired, we considered taking the subway to our next stop. We descended the dank stairwell only to confront what appeared to be a menagerie of trains and stops.

subwaysign 2Maybe you can guess that I didn’t have the patience to process all of that. We walked to Trump Tower and refueled for the trip home at the Starbucks there.

We’re closing in on the momsome moment. (Admit it, you’ve been anxiously waiting for it.) We were told to arrive at the bus stop 30 minutes before our 10pm departure. We were there 45 minutes early. What to do to fill the time, what to do? Take another, quick bathroom break. Next, “Look, pizza! Let’s get a quick slice of that.” Tick tock. Keeping it simple, we each asked for one slice of pepperoni pizza. Tick tock. The man grabbed the slices and popped them in the oven to re-heat them. Tick tock, tick tock… how long did this need to take? I’m about to have crispy critter pizza. We finally get the pizza (which turned out to be very good) and stood in line to pay. Can you hear it? Tick tock?

We go to the bus stop to eat what would turn out to be the most expensive pizza I have ever had. It’s still 20 to 25 minutes before the bus should arrive. We wait, but now I’m second guessing where we are. Should I find a number to call to double check? We wait some more. My husband calls to see if we made the bus. I try to sound confident as I tell him we are at the bus stop. Now I’m getting nervous. The clock continues to creep toward 10pm. Then it’s just after ten. NOW, I decide to call to check the location of the bus stop. Yes, I’m in the right place. The bus, however, has already gone by. I’m told I can catch the 10:30 on 152nd street. From 31st street!?! How did this happen? I glance down at the now empty pizza box. I see the pizza, the oven, the line. I hear, “arrive at the bus stop 30 minutes early, because THE BUS MIGHT BE EARLY.” The next time my husband called, I sadly confessed that we had missed the bus.

That pizza now cost a $160 for an Amtrak ride, and my husband’s sanity when had to come pick us up at the train station at 2am to drive us to the car we had intended to use to drive home on our own. Momsome.

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Gun Ownership: My Opinion

I have a lot of opinions. The problem is, I can’t remember the facts to back them up. For example: gun ownership. I believe individuals have the right to own guns to protect themselves. Why do I believe this? Let me put it this way. We immunize our children against terrible diseases. We do it despite information about possible serious side effects. We do it even though most of these diseases are extremely rare today. We do it because not to immunize our children leaves a chance that they could end up dead. Gun ownership is the same. While the threat is rare (not as rare recently), not to own one could leave us or our loved one’s dead.

These, however, are not facts. They are opinion. The internet is full of information for and against gun control, but where does one look for impartial facts about this topic? Finding a credible site, with comprehensive information about guns, was easier than I thought it would be: justfacts.com

Check it out to see if you agree that Just Facts is an impartial source for information which includes many important subjects, one of which is gun control. The topic of gun control covers everything from: crime and self-defense using a firearm, to differing opinions concerning the constitution and the meaning of the Second Amendment. I have used some information from Just Facts to support my position.

Here we go. One area anti-gun supporters like to talk about is the need for better background checks. The following chart, from Just Facts, summarizes the issues that are covered in background checks. While no system is perfect, this seems through.

Federal Background Check

Another area of concern, especially when tragedy strikes, is for more strict gun control laws. It is my belief that these laws restrict law abiding citizens, but have little effect on criminals. Just Facts includes information, while somewhat dated, that illustrates this point:

* A 2004 study of state prisoners who possessed guns during crimes for which they were jailed found that the guns were obtained from the following sources:

  • 0% through an illegal/street source
  • 4% through family or friends
  • 3% at a retail store
  • 6% at a pawnshop
  • 8% at a gun show
  • 6% at a flea market.[119]

This shows us that gun laws had no effect on the purchase of 77.4% of the guns purchased by prisoners, yet it effects the ability of 100% of law-abiding gun purchasers to protect themselves and their families.

Now, let’s look at some statistics that show the positive effect of owning a firearm.

* A 1982 survey of male felons in 11 state prisons dispersed across the U.S. found:

  • 34% had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”
  • 40% had decided not to commit a crime because they “knew or believed that the victim was carrying a gun.”
  • 69% personally knew other criminals who had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”[27]

Gun ownership, or the belief that a potential victim owned a gun, prevented a significant percentage of crimes. Isn’t this why we immunize our children; to “scare off” disease?

I have a lot of opinions. Owning a gun to protect my family, my children from a violent disaster is as important as protecting my children from long dead, but deadly, disease. Ultimately, however, I believe the best answer, the only true answer, is a revival of faith.  Those who believe in God know what I am talking about. Those who do not, don’t worry, my prayers for you won’t hurt.

 

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More From Week 2 – Oops, Wrong Blog

If this flower can survive, then so can I. The weight of responsibility will not get me down.

Wow, this is embarrassing. I posted here instead of to the blog for my current class. Rather than simply delete the post,  I have decided to edit with a little of what I learned in there this week.

I had no idea that choosing a color scheme for an assignment would be so difficult. I created many lovely color schemes on a website designed just for that purpose (http://kuler.adobe.com/#themes/newest?time=30). It was easy to do. However, using the colors on, what is supposed to be a professional site, was next to impossible. There are so many rules. Not all colors look good together, and those that do may not have enough contrast to be easily read by the viewer.  My schemes seemed to lean heavily toward Christmas themes or birth announcements. There is a time and a place for these, but not today.

Anyway, I went to post notes from last week, before posting notes for this week, and yet I find myself here  posting nonsense at 12:30am.

Speaking of nonsense, what is the deal with saggypants? Back to the Future 2 was bad enough with their pockets turned inside out. I remember seeing that and laughing at how unbelievably dumb it looked, never dreaming that reality would one-up it. If you have time to walk around, holding your pants up, you’ve got too much free time on your hands.

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I Miss My Blog

I haven’t forgotten my blog, I’m just buried in classwork and family duties. Eventually I’m going to get back to this and write thought-provoking posts on things like: how much I hate saggy pants or perhaps how leftovers should be called left-alones until they turn green, in which case they can be called tossed salad.

In the mean time, I am learning about HTML, CSS and health and fitness. Yes, health and fitness, the elective that didn’t come with my previous college degree.

When I get back to posting, I will also be sure to include interesting photos. One of my sons created this in paint.

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This is Momsome!

School is rapidly spinning into view, and with it many more opportunities for momsome moments. (I think I like the idea of saving definitions for the end. It’s there.) My kids will be escaping the house and the drudgery of doing chores more than once a day. For myself, I’m looking forward to starting two more college classes. It really is too bad that one of them I signed up for was not what I thought it was.

If you have read my recently updated “About” page you will understand why I am really not interested in taking a class that focuses on the “health concerns of college students”. I intended to take a class that would help me design a personalized fitness program using weight machines in the college gym. (This I could have benefitted from.)

In my zeal to find a class that I could take while my youngest child is at day care, I failed to notice the title change on the class as I scrolled through the possible days and times.  –This reminds me of a family trip in which we went the wrong direction for many miles before the error was detected. My father sadly commented, “And we were making such good time, too.” — Fortunately, I discovered my mistake before classes began. I am now happily enrolled in an on-line health class that will discuss such things as exercise without my having to strain a single muscle.

Is this incident momsome? I think so.

Here’s another one; from last year. One of my sons missed the school bus. I drove him to the school and pulled into the line of cars filled with students waiting to get close enough to the building to climb out. The principal stood at the head of the line, helping kids cross the street and motioning the emptied cars on their way. My son and I chatted as we inched our way forward. It seemed to take forever. Finally, I reached the front of the line and waved pleasantly to the principal as I drove past, to which I suddenly heard, “Mom, what are you doing!”

I sheepishly pulled back to the curb and let him out. Definitely momsome!

I would love to hear about more momsome moments. (Dads, I refuse to call your experiences mansome, but dadsome doesn’t have the same ring.)

Momsome – form of the word awesome, performed by a mom. This must include some ridiculous and/or embarrassing action on the part of the mother that does not impede the intended outcome. (I was introduced to this term by my son on an event similar to the ones mentioned above.)

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A Curtain By Any Other Name

Does this happen to you? I walked into the MPR (see definition at the end of this post) and screeched … no, not screeched, that sounds too harsh…. questioned, “Who knocked the curtain down?”

I used the term “curtain” loosely. If we hadn’t run out of money before we ran out of important things to buy for our new house, it would have been an actual curtain. What we, in fact, have is a set of sheets hung on a dowel rod. The rod is capped with rubber leg tips, just like the ones you find on the end of metal chair legs in elementary school.

 http://pinksherbet.com/

This is a pleasing shade for a rose.

My husband and his sister came up with this inexpensive solution to our privacy problems. I chose the color, a pleasing shade of rose. After determining the appropriate length for the curtain, my husband lugged out the sewing machine and stitched the rod pocket on each sheet. The unneeded length of sheet hung unceremoniously below the stitching. I later learned to flip this extra piece back over the rod, toward the window, to create a more finished look.

Back to the curtain, lying askew on the floor: Where was that stylish curtain rod? The missing rod eliminated the possibility that the dog had knocked it down by pushing her nose between the panels once too often. I know that I didn’t do it. This left only the kids as possible suspects. They probably careened into the curtain, knocking it to the ground; then happily scooped up the rod to use as a light saber or some other equally lethal weapon.

It was more important, however, that I find the rod than the doer of the taking.  We didn’t want to be in the equivalent of a large fish bowl as neighbors drove by in the evening. Upon locating the wayward dowel, I returned to thread it through the curtain.

What a sight met my eyes as I raised the curtain to align it with the rod! It was filthy, with a capital F-I-L-T-H-Y.  A lot of that grime I could blame on the dog and her curious wet nose. So off I went to the washer, and a few hours later (I got distracted) I hung the rose sheets with their rubber leg tipped dowel rods on the window. What the heck, I think I’ll call them curtains. After all, they’ve been fading there for 17 years.

http://bestclipartblog.com/

MPR: piano, violins, trumpets, computer desk, book shelf, catch-all table, dining room chandelier; all becomes the multi purpose room… for lack of a better name.

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Some Thoughts About Writing

I may not be cut out for this whole blog experience. Over the years, I have written a few letters to the editor. Each took  approximately three hours to write. They could be no more than 250 words. Here is my process:


Letters to the editor don’t have photos, blogs do. These are from a stop motion series my kids did. I think it captures the mood well.

1 Write a little bit

2 Delete, delete, delete

3) Write a little more

4) Move a prepositional phrase

5) Write, write

6) Delete, delete, including the prepositional phrase

7) Switch the order of the paragraphs

8) Redo the first paragraph to work with the prior rearranging

9) Spell check

Perfection takes a very long time. On the other hand, this only took about 20 minutes. I might be okay.

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