Thursday, July 17, 2014

This year's garden

This year's garden is not any different than last year's garden.

Except that I lost my rosemary and thyme plant during the winter. That made me kind of sad.

This year I have:

Strawberries in one box. The strawberries were in a smaller container, so I did not get many this year. I recently replanted them in a box and I hope that will give it a better chance to grow and produce more fruit next year.

Blueberry bushes that will not stop producing! It's such a horrible problem to have.

A box of lettuce. I love being able to go cut of leaves for a sandwich or salad whenever I want.

An herb box with a surviving Thai basil plant and a struggling Italian basil plant. My cilantro and parsley decided to not do so well. I also have a container of chives.

Alex's science teacher gave the kids some hybrid tomato plant seeds at the end of the school year. While most of the tomato plants here have fruit on them, ours are still growing strong in their pots. I am hoping they will produce fruit before the cooler fall weather hits.

Today I dug out all of the garlic that I planted last fall. The cloves are tiny. I need to find a better garlic to plant this fall.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

I hope I'm not! I'm too old for that!

Yesterday at work a woman asked me if I was pregnant.

Then she went on to tell me that she often asks inappropriate questions.

Then she told me that she has bad eyesight.

So, I'm going with that and that for why she asked me if I was pregnant.

*Sigh - people*

I brushed away her question and didn't let it bother me because she seemed a bit "off." She kept following me around the store talking to me while I was trying to work. What I really wanted to say to her was, "If you know you ask inappropriate questions, then why do you continue to ask them?"

Instead, at the end of my shift, I told my manager that I needed to go due to my "delicate condition." Sometimes it's better to laugh about something than to get angry over it.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Yarn along

Hello. My name is Kathi and I am a knitter.

I admit that I get somewhat jealous at other knitters who can breeze through a project.

I admit that I feel like I am the slowest knitter in the world.

I admit that I am still working on my son's Christmas gift. From Christmas 2013. It is now seven months past this past Christmas.

The good news, though, is that I can feel the end in sight!

My goal is to finish this second sock before the end of August. We leave for a trip on September 1st and I want to take socks to knit for myself.

I admit that even though I feel like I am the slowest knitter in the world, I will not stop knitting. Just keep knitting...

My daughter is taking AP Literature this coming school year and she received a list of books that commonly show up on the AP exam. I have not read many of the books on the list, so I have decided to throw a classic into the mix of my reading. Right now I am reading Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison. It's interesting and wordy at times.

Happy knitting and reading!

Link up at Yarn Along!

Sunday, July 06, 2014

My dying wish

I have spoken to my family and a couple of friends about this. I expect them to hold my wish in highest regard.

If I were dying of cancer, and if there is an adult "Make-A-Wish" type program, this is my wish:

1. I would like to meet, cook a meal with, and eat that meal with Gordon Ramsay.

Gordon would sit like this at our meal:

And not like this:

And, we would have a lovely conversation over our stunning meal that we created together. And he would speak some choice words too at which I would laugh. They sound funnier in a British accent.

2. Speaking of laughter, Ricky Gervais would be our guest for this meal. The soul purpose of him participating in our meal would be to listen to him laugh. Because listening to him laugh makes me laugh.

And we would all have a splendid time together.

I think that this is as official as it can get. If I am not of sound mind, I expect everyone to make sure my family upholds my wish!

Thursday, July 03, 2014

When I advocate on my daughter's behalf

Like most parents, I love my kids. And, since I love my kids, if they feel like they have been wronged or shamed or bullied, I will stand up for them. Not at all times. Sometimes I use those situations as learning experiences. We'll talk about it and move on. But, sometimes I feel like there is a need to address the issue.

Which is not easy for me. I am learning to speak up on behalf of myself and those I care about. I have always been one who avoids conflict. I would much rather hold my tongue than to create a conflict. I have taken it in and let it blow over. However, recently, I have decided that I'm ready to start addressing issues that bother me. I guess that it is for two reasons: 1) As I have gotten older I am more comfortable in my skin and with myself. I am ready to speak my mind. And, 2) I would love to find a social work job where I can advocate on behalf of those who are not able to. If this is something I truly want to do, I need to start close to home.

That being said, I felt the need to advocate on my daughter's behalf. As a parent of teens, I am finding this to be a strange transition. Adults have never seemed mind my kids when they were younger. They were cute and entertaining. Now that they are teens things seemed to have changed. I don't know why. They're still the same person. Maybe it's because they have better critical thinking skills and want to express themselves in their own way.

This is a long introduction to say that I had to confront some friends about my daughter's shorts.

Last summer it was made very clear to her (and me) from this family that she was not welcome to their house if she wore short shorts. When I was first told this I was angry, and I did not address the issue then, which I really should have. It affected her enough that she has not felt comfortable going back to their house in case any other comments were made.

Look at my daughter. She is tall and thin. Trying to find shorts that would be an acceptable length to the family is near impossible. Believe me, we have tried. Any shorts on her are going to look short. But, they cover her butt, she feels comfortable wearing them, and I am comfortable with her wearing them because I bought them. That should be enough said.

This summer, as she was preparing to work at a summer festival with this family's daughter and potentially spend the night at their house, I called and made it very clear that I did not want them commenting to her about her clothing. If they had an issue with what she was wearing at their house they needed to call me to pick her up and we would make arrangements in other ways.

Here were my main concerns about them (especially the father) commenting about her clothing:

1. Telling a teen girl that the clothing she is wearing is not acceptable and that she is not welcome at your house if she is wearing them is shaming. My daughter would tell you, though, that she felt more annoyed than shamed by the comments. I think she has a good sense of her self and is awesome in that way.

2. The fact that the adults, who have known my daughter for years, are looking at and making judgments about her based upon what she is wearing is concerning. Especially when the father is looking at her.

3. The fact that their daughter, who is a runner, wears shorts as short as my daughter out in public makes their comments hypocritical.

4. Do they set the same standard for all of their guests? Do the same rules apply to their daughter's friends who come to the house in their running shorts? What if I went to their house in an outfit that they thought was inappropriate? Would I be told that I could not return if I wore that outfit again?

5. The mom told me that she has never commented on my daughter's clothing to her. However, she has been the one to pass on the message from the father. The fact that she never said that she did not agree with her husband always made me think that she was in agreement with him. And, as far as I am aware, she never told him that he was out of line with his comments.

I know that I have strained a relationship by addressing my concerns with this family. However, I believe that it was more important to stand up for my daughter in this situation. I felt that the words were not acceptable and shaming to her.

No one deserves to be shamed for any reason. And for that I will strongly advocate.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Like a girl

Let's end using the phrase "like a girl" as an insult.

This ad is brilliant!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Are Dr. Oz and the Wizard of Oz the same person?

I will start this off by saying that I have never watched an entire episode of Dr. Oz. The only spinets of his show that I have seen are when Joel McHale makes fun of him on The Soup. My disinterest in Dr. Oz is that even though he is a credentialed doctor, I find his show to be more for the purpose of entertainment and not really beneficial. Kind of like Dr. Phil.

Recently Dr. Oz went before congress to answer questions regarding his pushing of "miracle" supplements on his TV show. And like most "miracle pills," claims were made by Dr. Oz that these pills helped people to lose weight, fight cancer or live a longer life.

The problem with this is that there is absolutely no "miracle pill" to address these health issues. When a doctor starts hawking supplement "miracle pills," what has he become? Nothing more than a charlatan in my book. In fact, it's only a win-win situation for Dr. Oz and the supplement companies. If a supplement company can get an endorsement by Dr. Oz, then they know they will make lots of money. In turn, Dr. Oz makes money off of his endorsement.

People will buy the supplements endorsed by Dr. Oz because they think Dr. Oz is a great man - and, he may be. But it is his personality and celebrity status that makes people think he is a great man that can be trusted with medical advice. Thankfully we have someone like John Oliver to address this issue with a bit of humor, even though Dr. Oz's claims are in no way humorous.

Hopefully people will think twice about buying goods that Dr. Oz pushes and will instead take a hard look at how diet, exercise and good sleep affect our bodies in a better way than any pill will.

*To be clear, I am not saying that all supplements are bad. This is more about the fact that Dr. Oz is making false statements (not scientifically proven "miracle" pills), pushing supplements and making money by his endorsements.