7 Quick Takes: Reasons I’m Tired Tonight Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Daniel isn’t sleeping well. We think it’s him feeling hungry and not knowing how to process that. Because Daniel. I’ve been trying to enforce EXTRA drinking of milk to keep him full and I’ve upped his feed.

— 2 —

PTK induction. I was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa (international 2-year college honor society) tonight. I was invited to join in Fall 2017, but I’ve been a little busy. My mom was watching Daniel and Dad surprised me by showing up.

Dad and me at the induction

— 3 —

Portfolio. My portfolio for my Final Project class is due tomorrow. I have almost everything printed out and done, but Sage was being catty yesterday and I need to redo and print out a report for it. I blame the LA Dodgers.

— 4 —

Puke. I hadn’t been gone for five minutes tonight when Mom called to let me know that Daniel puked (of course) and asked if she should give him tomorrow’s meds as he presumably puked up tonight’s. I was on the road to school, so I said “yes”. Well, I’m not totally sure now and am keeping an eye on him. At least he’s sleeping?

— 5 —

Donald Trump is still in office. His mere existence tires me.

— 6 —

Pentecost. I’m writing the prayers for Pentecost and I need to translate them into Spanish… or at least send them to my translation staff, one of whom came into tutoring last week and scolded me for not having them done yet. (God bless my “translation staff” of students!)

— 7 —

Forged in Fire. I’ve been watching “Forged in Fire” reruns while I’ve done homework lately… and this sometimes has me up too late. Oops!

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: May 27, 2019

For Today… May 27, 2019

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… sunny. Daniel and I might head to the park later while we’re doing errands.

I am thinking… about job-hunting.

I am thankful… for the men and woman who have sacrificed their lives while serving this country.

One of my favorite things… quiet. Unfortunately, Daniel is home today and in a cranky mood, so he is yelling right now. (Autism is fun.)

I am wearing… black fitted tee from Old Navy and capris from Kohl’s

I am creating… forms and documents for my Document Production class.

I am watching… reruns of Forged in Fire. Thank goodness for On Demand!

I am hoping… Daniel settles down. He had a crappy night last night where he was unable to get to sleep easily, and he’s a pill today as a result. The rest of us are feeling similar and trying to stay out of the way of each other.

I am learning… where my trouble spots are in putting together business reports. It’s frustrating because the things I’m missing are opinion things in the mind of the computer program.

In my kitchen… hot dogs last night. I don’t know if Dad wants to do anything special tonight for Memorial Day.

In the school room… Daniel has a few weeks of school to go. We’re going to work on reading this summer during his daytime feeds.

Post Script… this is a very sweet story.

Shared Quote… “Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” — Neil Gaiman, Coraline

A moment from my day… Thinking of Grandpa today.

My grandfather's memorial marker

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Graduation Advice Edition

7 Quick Takes

It’s graduation season around here and I thought I would share my advice for those graduating from high school or college.

— 1 —

It doesn’t cost anything to be compassionate. You will always have the choice of whether to be critical of someone or to be compassionate. Even if you strenuously disagree with their beliefs or their actions, choose compassion.

— 2 —

Put people “up”. Rather than putting people down, praise someone who is doing something well. You’ll find that the people around them conform to what you have just praised. It also will give people some strength to get through a hard situation. Jon used to have a parishioner who would ALWAYS find something to praise in Daniel’s behavior on a Sunday morning, even if it was just that he was exuberant that day. It was a nice break in the nasty looks I got from people because my kid dared to make a sound in church or run up the aisle.

— 3 —

VOTE. Always, always, ALWAYS! The current nightmare in the White House was elected by 27% of the population because close to 50% of eligible voters didn’t show up. Your vote makes a difference whether for a bond measure, the mayor, or your Congresscritters! If you are over 18, you have a responsibility to help shape the political landscape of your community and your country.

— 4 —

Get outside of your country. This one is especially true for those of us in the USA! There is a whole world to see and many different languages, religions, and cultures. Go and explore them.

— 5 —

Say “please” and “thank-you”. Ten years ago, I taught a coworker how to do something and she poked her head in the room afterward to thank me. I remember that ten years later because it is a rare thing. When I was talking to the head of the BASAM program at my school about it a few weeks ago, she commented that such a thing would be in someone’s favor in a hiring decision. It also creates a better workplace when people are polite to each other.

— 6 —

Read. Find a genre you like and make sure you spend time reading. It will make you a much more interesting person.

— 7 —

Never stop learning. My great-aunt is 96 and tells this to her grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and great-nieces and nephews frequently. Learn how to do your own home repairs. Learn how to cook for yourself. Learn a new language. Just always be ready to learn something.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

Saying Grace (Repost)

I wrote this in June 2003 but I refer people to it enough that I thought it deserved to be re-posted.

In small group tonight, we were talking about prayer and witnessing before diving into the Book of Revelation. One of the contexts given was saying grace in a public place like a restaurant and it reminded me of this…

Since I embraced Christ at age 14, I’ve been fairly intentional about praying before I eat. I was subtle about it at first and got bolder as time went on. By the time I left for college at age 18, I was praying before meals regularly. I wasn’t obnoxious about it — I’d just bow my head for a few moments — but I was very conscious to do so. At first, this really puzzled the motley crew of non-Christian influences with whom I hung out in college and the joke became that I was “waiting for the Lactaid to kick in” if I was eating with Das Group. People knew to just hold off on conversating with me for however long my head was bowed and I didn’t make a huge deal out of it.

I was really focused on being inconspicuous at first because I thought I was shoving my faith in peoples’ faces but everyone was really OK with it and some people actually told me during some of the deeper one-on-one conversations we had that they really thought that it was cool. Others would bow their heads with me if we were all going out to eat and my friend Amy actually asked if we could say grace when we ate together in our apartment during our senior year. Granted, it was a silent prayer but it was a time to give credit to the One who made it possible to have the food on our plates. I’ve gotten lax about my quiet times lately and even praying before I fall asleep (I tend to fall asleep *while* praying a lot of the time) but I’m still very vigilant about saying grace. This puzzles me because I’m doing the little prayers instead of the big ones; but by the same token, I’m also acknowledging my gratefulness to the Lord for what I have and that I would not have it without Him.

Another thing that came of saying grace was that it taught my friends about how much my faith meant in my life. In November 1999, my life was in pieces (literally) and I came into the dining hall one morning in tears. I was eating alone and my friend Amy came and sat down with me and asked me what was wrong, which made me cry harder. She then said the most magical words I’ve ever heard, “Jen, do you want to pray about this?” The reason they were so magical was that Amy was a non-believer (at the time) and it was like “SHE UNDERSTANDS!!!” She offered her hand and I took it and we prayed silently for probably a good 10 minutes. I still get weepy thinking about it because I don’t know if Amy will ever understand how much it meant to me that she sat there and prayed with me. All I know is that she understood that prayer was important in my life at the time and she wanted to help me in a way that was meaningful to me. Other of my friends would ask me to pray with them (also non-believers at the time though some have come to Christ since our graduation) and though I’d be judicious in my wording, it was still an affirmation of my faith and in a way saying that they understood the power prayer could have. Saying grace was a way I could witness to people about my faith and it was an expression of my dependence on God for everything.

I heard a lot about being intentional and praying VERY audibly in restaurants as a way of witnessing. (By “VERY audibly”, I’m talking a voice level 3-4 times above normal.) I think that instead of praying so loudly that others DEFINITELY hear us (cf. Luke 18:9-14), we should pray as we normally do and let people notice us. Believe me… they WILL and I’ve gotten comments on it even when I’ve prayed silently to myself at $tarbuck$ (literally waiting for the Lactaid to kick in). I remember the impact it made on me as a newly-minted Christian to see two people praying over their bear claws at $tarbuck$ and I think that it can have similar impacts on other people.

My $0.02 for what it is worth.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: May 19, 2019

For Today… May 19, 2019

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… sunny and in the 60’s.

I am thinking… about the Document Production homework on which I am procrastinating.

I am thankful… for my evil twin, his wife, and their critter coming up this weekend for the communal birthday celebration. We (the evil twin and me) turn 39 years old today!

One of my favorite things… my nephew Braden. He is so curious and so cute right now. (Not sharing pictures because my evil twin and his wife aren’t in favor of it.)

I am wearing… a black fitted tee from Old Navy and capris from Fred Meyer.

I am creating… a portfolio for my Final Project class.

I am watching… lots of Forged in Fire reruns.

I am hoping… this week’s Document Production homework isn’t too bad.

I am learning… to watch for extra spaces that I add inadvertently to documents.

In my kitchen… probably a lovely spinach salad tonight.

In the school room… Daniel is enjoying school.

Post Script… I’m pouring over this piece from Buzzfeed on how to start a bullet journal.

Shared Quote… “Don’t spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door.” — Coco Chanel

A moment from my day… Long long ago, in a galaxy far far away…

Twins

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: English Only Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Working with non-English speakers. When I walked into the classroom for my drop-in session on Monday, I had to calm down one of the students who was taking a test for one of her classes. Her English is limited and she had been sitting there for two hours trying to figure out how to start her test. Once I got clarification from her instructor on what she was supposed to be doing, we were able to get her working. I’m thankful to a couple of my other Spanish-speaking students for translating because I needed to give her very specific instructions and Google Translate can only do so much.

— 2 —

“English only” people. My experience on Monday got me thinking about the misguided people who make nasty comments about how “this is America and people need to speak English!” Most of these people do not speak any language but English and many of them cannot write English well. For my Spanish-speaking students, it’s the equivalent of learning two languages because you have the words that come from French and the words that come from German. Add in grammar that is complex and you have something that confounds a lot of people learning the language. Other languages are hard for us to learn, especially those with different alphabets, but I see a lot of my ELL students struggling with verb tenses and the number of verbs that have prepositions attached that change the meaning. On the other hand, you don’t have to think about the gender of nouns in English as you do in Romance languages.

— 3 —

It’s about time, Washington! Washington took away personal and philosophical exemptions for the MMR vaccine last week. I’d prefer if they had taken away religious exemptions too, but I’m thinking that most of those people either homeschool or only attend schools of their religious tradition. With the number of measles cases in the state and the fact that it had been eradicated 20 years ago and is now back, I’m glad my state is taking a stand!

— 4 —

Hematology update. I saw my hematologist on Tuesday morning and he is OK with my blood work the way it is. My ferritin is the low end of normal and my red cells are still funky, but there is nothing that is concerning him. He is sending me back to my regular doctor and adding to the recommendation of every medical professional I’ve seen since February that a hysterectomy is a good idea for me, given that my body is depleting red blood cells faster than it can make them. With any luck, I’ll be getting spayed this summer.

— 5 —

For handwriting enthusiasts… This Reddit is fabulous.

— 6 —

Mother’s Day. Mother’s Day was lovely. I got a rose at church, a carnation at Starbucks, and my mom and Daniel surprised me with flowers when they came home from the grocery store. I was honestly just happy to get a craft thing from Daniel that he made in school — I have pretty simple tastes and I don’t expect people to make a big to-do over me. The flowers were definitely a nice surprise though.

— 7 —

Funny… Did y’all know that Green Bay Packers player Aaron Rodgers was the soldier who got immolated on GOT last Sunday? It was interesting to watch.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum. Tell her how cool her new layout is!

7 Quick Takes: Only 6 Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Daniel update. We saw the psychiatrist at the Autism Center again today and he is keeping Daniel on the dose of meds that we titrated up to last week. I didn’t quite realize until we were talking to him that Daniel’s behavior is actually good on this new dose. Now if we can keep him from waking up at 4:30 a.m. and bouncing off the walls…

— 2 —

Interesting… The psychiatrist commented that he has seen more than a few kids with Daniel’s genetic abnormality that is responsible for his autism and they tend to have similar behavior, food issues, etc. In other words, THIS IS NOT BECAUSE WE VACCINATED HIM.

(Seriously… there are STILL people who harp on this despite studies coming out daily showing that VACCINES DO NOT CAUSE AUTISM.)

— 3 —

Hematology. I saw my lovely hematologist on Friday afternoon and he referred me for more bloodwork. My red cells are funky, my clotting factors are OK, my folate is too high, and some of the other factors are off. I’ve tried googling this stuff and I’m not finding anything conclusive, so I’m going to have to wait until Tuesday when I see my hematologist again to find out what’s up. It might be that they’ll have me do repeat tests every so often to see if/when I’m heading toward anemia. We’re also going to see if a hysterectomy helps with it at all because it seems like my body is losing red blood cells faster than it can make them.

— 4 —

Rachel Held Evans. If you want to understand why I and many other Christians (Protestants and Catholics alike) are mourning her, read this hashtag.

— 5 —

School update. I’m required to do a mock employment interview for my Final Project class and I went to interview with the head of the BASAM program at school… who happens to be a former Fortune 500 VP who worked all over southeast Asia. It was interesting and also really good practice for what to say and how to answer questions that I might be asked. She asked if I would connect to her on LinkedIn in case one of her local friends has a job that might fit me. Score!

— 6 —

Game of Thrones. I’m betting on Daenerys winning the throne. Because girls and dragons! Not that I’ve ever seen more than a few minutes of the show…

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.