Three things — 7/30/15

Three things I’m loving this week

scallywags

1. Scallywags, Erie’s Pirate Ship. So…I somewhat reluctantly boarded Scallywags with all my in-laws for my MIL and FIL’s anniversary (50 years!) celebration on Sunday night.

I thought it was going to be silly. Pirate ships are for children and we were mostly grown adults. I didn’t want to wear a paper pirate hat or say “arrrrgh!” or shoot the water cannons. They assured me that the sunset cruise was for adults, too. (“There’s a bar on board!”).

I have to tell you that we had a blast. The sunset was amazing. The crew were fun. The water cannons were a blast. And the drinks were strong. By the end of the night I was, indeed, talking like a pirate, sipping a tropical vodka drink, and doing the Electric Slide on deck (which may or may not have had to do with the vodka).  For $20 (tax included)…it’s well worth rounding up some of your pirate friends and setting sail.

2. The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. A friend has been suggesting that I read this book for years. When I saw it on the list of the Philadelphia Free Library’s available audio books, I placed a hold. The book is 20 years old and I was still 5th in line to borrow it, which speaks volumes about the timeless messages contained in it.

It was a pretty fascinating, and I knew my “love language” — and Dan’s — pretty quickly, and realized that many of our arguments/irritations are born out of the fact that we speak two very different languages.

It also made me think about the girls…and how best to “speak” to them according to their native “love language.”

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3. Lil’ Fishys. If you have a pool or a kid who is into fish, or who just loves tub/pool toys, these Lil’ Fishys are a fun (and cheap) gift. They are $10 at Amazon, but I bought the girls some at WalMart for about $7 and they were one of their favorite birthday gifts this year. Sam loves them, too…and chases them around the pool as they swim, dip and dive. Word to the wise: Get rechargeable batteries — they burn through batteries quick.

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4. Box of Light Studios. The girls are at a “Minecraft Modding” camp at Box of Light (in the Bethany Outreach Center on E. 10th St.) this week and they absolutely love it. Box of Light offers really cool classes (Minecraft, stop motion animation, digital animation, robotics) that really engage kids in learning. Also, they are totally laid back there. They don’t freak out if you drop the kids off 10 minutes early or pick them up 5 minutes late, which gives working parents a little much-needed wiggle room in handling drop-offs and pickups.

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5. Lake Erie sunsets. Seriously….do you have any idea how truly blessed we are to live in a place that puts on such spectacular sky shows more nights than not?

Things I’m not loving this week

1. Bill Cosby. There are too many to ignore now, Cos’. We were duped…and, yet, I’m not surprised, I assume people in positions of power and wealth are corrupt.

2. More senseless deaths in Erie. And, worse, young teens. This. Has. Got. To. Stop. I don’t know what the answer is. Some say it’s drugs, some say it’s bad parenting, some say it’s guns, but everyone seems to agree that the citizens have got to talk to the police, but if you look at that argument from another angle you have to wonder why they are so afraid/reluctant to talk to the police. There’s a fundamental lack of trust that has to be addressed if things are going to get any better.

3. Stifling heat. Yep, I’m going to complain about the heat & humidity…and, yes, I know it’s brief and temporary here in Erie, but I hate it. Humidity makes me mean. You’ve been warned.

Worth Reading — 7/29/15

A random collections of blog posts, articles and other things I think are worth sharing.

Atlantic: 10 Things Holden Caufield Hates (“A 61st-birthday pity party in honor of The Catcher In The Rye and its mopey protagonist.”)

Being a Mom: 40 Place to See With Your Kids Before They Are All Grown Up

Atlantic: Lisa Frank is Real (And, according to Jezebel, her personal life and company is a train wreck. Wow).

Time: 14 Reasons You’re Tired All the Time 

“Skipping your workout to save energy actually works against you.” (True dat).

Three things — 7/23/15

Things I’m loving this week

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1. Donald Trump insult generator “Because the Republican presidential candidate hasn’t gotten around to mocking everyone in the world just yet”….now there is an insult generator so he can insult you and your friends, too. Hilarious. Thank God for the comedic relief brought to the campaign by Donald Trump…even Jon Stewart agrees.

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2. Vacation days. I have a generous amount of vacation time and, even more important, the ability to actually take advantage of it. Truly thankful for that.

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3. Our pool/night swimming. Our pool is the most frivolous, impulsive, $10 grand we ever spent. But…it’s been worth every dollar. I’m glad we did it before we had kids because we’d probably never spend the money on it now. Night swimming on a hot, humid evening is simply Heaven on earth.

Things I’m not loving

1. Procrastination. Not sure when I became an on-deadline writer, but it’s clearly time for me to own it. It’s good I thrive/write well under pressure.

2. Popped pool toys. If I had back all the money we’ve blown on inflatable pool toys, I could put in another pool.

3. No more beach concerts. It’s unfortunate that the Sunset Series beach concerts (Beach No. 1 at Presque Isle on Wednesday nights) end in mid July…just when it’s getting good & hot.

Worth Reading — 7/22/15

A random collections of blog posts, articles and other things I think are worth sharing.

Huff Post Women: “She Put on a Lot of Weight”

“I wanted to make them see how much more I am than someone who has put on weight. But the more I thought about it, the more ridiculous it seemed. Why does it matter? Why do I care what these people think of me?”

Slate: The Original Ghostwriter Behind the Nancy Drew Novels Was One of the Most interesting YA Writers of All Time.

The Mid: How to Worry Like a 1970s Mom

“Ugly Color Schemes — Orange, brown, avocado and gold? This problem speaks for itself.”

Salon: This One Photo Explains a Lot About Racism in 2015 (powerful observation.)

“Families in Oklahoma, many of them black families, hoping to see the president in their town. Met by this menacing, bullying flag, this giant symbol of intolerance and segregation. In this image, they ignore it as best as they can — though it still hangs over everything.”

The New Yorker: The Earthquake That Will Destroy the Coastal Northwest (This is pretty terrifying, actually). If that’s too technical/boring for you…try this one: Quakenami! Why the Pacific Northwest is Doomed.

How to read the paper with your cat

After returning from Sunday’s sweat-fest of a half marathon at Presque Isle, I spread out a towel and plopped down on the living room floor to wait for Dan to finish in the shower. I always let him go first because he’s faster and I like to linger and take my time without feeling rushed.

I spread the Sunday Living section out in front of me and leaned over to stretch my back and quads.

When I turned my attention back to the paper, I saw this:
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Oh, hello there.

Blue clearly thought he was waaaaayyy more interesting than anything in that crinkly paper.

I petted him a bit, then pushed him off.

He let me read the first page, but he doubled down when I turned to the inside.

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What? Huh? What’s reading? Pay attention to me.

So I gave in, gathered him up and snuggled him like the little baby I swear he thinks he is.  Blue3 Blue4

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