Monday, December 31, 2007

Another year has slipped away...

Have I accomplished everything I intended to? Have I added value and made easier and more comfortable the lives of those I have encountered throughout the year? Do I like who I am and where I am?

Thinking about those things and looking for the answers as I leave 2007 behind and move forward into 2008. I hope that the answers to all these questions are positive for you....I am still taking stock right now, for myself.

Happy New Year to you all....and I am...until next year...yours, with much love...


Monday, December 24, 2007

Having the liberty of free expression....

is not a license to cause suffering, to be cruel or perpetuate hate.

I am not sure what it is that I want to say on this topic, but this is something that has been nagging at me in recent days. I am hard pressed...trying to figure out WHEN it became no longer necessary in our society to practice basic manners and observed a minimal amount of courtesy in our day to day dealings with others. Why has it become acceptable to treat our interactions with others as an inconvenience rather than an opportunity....what has deteriorated so significantly to make it an exception rather than the rule to encounter a person who treats others with decency, dignity and respect.

I vaguely recall a similar discussion with my mother some thirty years ago...something about "you young kids" and "respecting authority" is no longer an issue of respecting is simply the inability in this supposedly civil society to respect EACH makes me sad...and to have this most holy of times be the reason that I am so pessimistic makes me sadder still...

"Having" is not nearly as important as what you do with what you have....loving is of much more impact than being loved...doing makes more impact than "planning to do"...and being genuine in all you do is the biggest compliment you can pay everyone you come in contact with...

If I could wish anything for all this would be... to CARE...about yourself, your loved ones and friends...and the people that you see every day that you don't even's a start...and a good one....and isn't it true to the spirit of the season?

That's all the ramble for now...till later....much love to always,


Friday, December 21, 2007

No title

Tired, pissed and have nothing to say



Thursday, December 20, 2007


Sorry I have been gone so long...have had a very busy time at work and lots of other stuff going on as well...things have the probability of continuing to be busy (but in a GOOD way) but I promise to try harder to get back here to post for anyone who might actually give a crap :)

I came home from work tonight to the young one and the firstborn in the living room, with lots of cardboard boxes, what appeared to be an electronic drum kit and a "Fender" guitar...both, I was told controllers for their Xmas present to themselves, the XBox game "ROCK BAND". They were just getting things set up so I took a moment to sort through the build-up of mail and then went into the living room to scope out the situation.

By the time I sat down on the sectional couch, they were getting calibration taken care of so that the musical instrument style input devices responded appropriately as they were interacting with the game. They set up their band (The Liquid Slumber Party - I LOVE THAT!!!) and their band members (the firstborn, "Church" - lead guitar and the young one used his own name as the drummer) They played through a few songs to get a feel for things...the songs included are current, popular and some of our favs, so it makes the game that much more fun. As they played for points, I found myself singing along (anyone who knows me is not surprised at all at that)...and before I knew it I was also a member of the band as the lead singer "Rochelle", a short curvy blonde with green eyes. Once all of us were involved the fun truly began...we played some "gigs", won over lots of fans and earned a van to tour in, as well as acquired a manager....I can't wait until the next time the boys need a singer...they can SOOOOO count me in!!!

This game kicks major much more than GUITAR HERO, according to the boys, who would definitely be the expert opinion on this topic...I just really enjoyed the heck out of it...the challenge, the time with the boys...just a great time...should be a pretty fun Xmas!!!

Hope this post finds you well and enjoying all the love and companionship the holidays have to offer....until later, much love to always


Friday, November 02, 2007


In the span of just a few hours, my work life will change direct supervisor, who I have come to depend on to guide and inform me, is transitioning out of his roll at our company. His departure will leave a huge void in my day to day IT meanderings, both in the quality of the experience and my comfort level. He is such a knowledgeable and accessable IT person, and his wealth of experience in this particular organization has helped me navigate the very tricky territory of balancing IT needs, responsibilities and user personalities, enabling me to maximize my strength as a service provider and build trust relationships with some very difficult people in the company.

I will miss him very much, as will the organization, for some time to come. Although selfishly I would like him to stay, I personally wish nothing but success and great happiness for him in whatever endeavor he decides to pursue....the organization will adapt in time, and I hope that the knowledge that it is all that much better for him having been here is a source of pride and pleasure for him as his mind wanders back to those days from time to time. informal farewell gathering at day's end...hugs and best wishes on his future and ours as well....

That's it for now...till later, much love to him and to you.....


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Birthday

Today is my young one's 19th birthday. He is a freshman at the University of Toledo and is a music education major. He has accomplished this all on his own, without any financial or emotional assistance from one of his parents and what little that I have been able to offer to him.

He is advanced beyond sad to resentful and angry that he has had no support, emotional or otherwise from his male parent since our divorce 10 years (yep, it HAS been that long) ago. Once he became fully ensconced in his new, remarried life, he has found it extraordinarily easy to "forget" his sons...and it has been a bitter pill that each one has swallowed in their own time and are dealing with in their own ways.

The firstborn has given up....his mindset is such that he acknowledges that he is fortunate enough to have a father who is not dead...but he might as well be for as well as he knows him or is involved in his life. The young one is much more intense, and his reaction is vehement...he feels let down, cut off and pissed off, that in another of the very important phases of his life, his father has opted to "keep a low profile"...

It is what it is...when they get angry about it, they vent to me...and last night...the night before his 19th birthday, the young one was angry...I cannot apologize for the behavior because I cannot understand it...they are always MY children, regardless of how careless others can be about it...

So..Happy Birthday my young one...I am so very proud of you...and love you more than you will ever be able to know....

That's it for now...till later...much love to you....


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

There are a lot of GOOD things about being a geek....

People think that geeks are dull and boring people who have their heads plugged into their monitors all the time, keeping up with the latest install of Linux or crunching some code to do something or other that noone cares about....nothing could be farther from the truth, in my personal experience....

I work with a lot of people who are very "tech-savvy" and have to be to get their jobs done. They are informed on the latest tech advances in hardware and software and are very literate on the ways of networking and application use, as it applies to their particular jobs. You would think that with all that knowledge base to pull from, you would not need a person like me in the mix....that is where you err....

A support person is there because they are well-rounded in all the different things that people do, use and need to be able to do all of their jobs. They are expected to know everything about everything or at least how to figure it all out...and do it with speed, efficiency and if you are really good at it, with generosity and grace, so users don't feel like an inconvenience or a burden.

I think I am a really good support person....I am accessible, empathetic, not intimidating by any stretch of the imagination, and responsive. I will take a user's problem as my own and work it to its resolution, no matter how long it takes or how many tries I have to make at it....I do not take unsuccessful attempts as failures...I see them as "learning experiences"....chances to get more knowledge and be more successful in the future.

These are trying times in my office for IT...but I am still happy to be a geek...I can use my skill set to assure that at least the end users have some sort of stability and security in the face of a dynamic and changing IT environment....wish us luck....we are going to be needing it!!

That's it for now...till later, much love to you....


Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Work is extremely busy....there are staffing changes in the offing that are causing a lot of fast-stepping to get things ready. The end of the month will be a frantic sprint, as we all attempt to take on new roles and embrace additional responsibiities during the transition. Challenges abound, but so far lots of teamwork and things are still getting will be a difficult personal adjustment, because I have a great deal of respect and admiration for the staff member who is leaving to pursue other opportunities.

So...possible travel in the works as well...should be interesting...

That's the quick scoop..till later, much love to you...


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Ben's Brother....more on them...

Ben's Brother

If you are getting into Ben's Brother, as it seems everyone who has access to a TV and the internet is, you MUST visit their official website and their MySpace page, where you can sample their music and find out more about them. If you have not seen the Dentyne Ice "Kiss A Frog" commercial that seems to be stirring things up here in the US for them, click on THIS LINK.



PS - News on their MySpace declares that there is a US release of the song "Stuttering" available on iTunes NOW! GO get it!!!!


Priscilla and LindaWent out for snacks and conversation with a couple of my dearest friends last night. These are the people that I connected with during my years working in the school district....the kindred spirits who supported me when I was most challenged and stood by me when I was down. Every one has known me from my very beginning in my chosen career as a support technician and has watched as I have grown into the IT person I am now. These are talented educators and very sweet and wonderful women. I am grateful to have them in my life.

Jackie and meWe had a great time, with lots of laughs, conversation and good food. I will be seeing one of my friends again on Thursday evening, and of course keeping in touch by phone with all. I hope that schedules allow us to get together again soon....I miss them a was great to spend time with them.

That's it for now....til later, much love to you....


PS - Another win for the Tribe last night - now up three games to more and off we is Thursday night....GO TRIBE!!!!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

More on "Ben's Brother"....

This group is taking off like crazy...the commercial seems to be an accidental exposure, judging from comments on their blog on their official website Official Website for Ben's Brother. Here you can get information on their schedule of appearances, connect to their blog, and download photos of the band for desktops.

Check it out...the band is awesome...and coming this way (US)....

More later...till then much love to you....


PS - The Cleveland Indians (MY TEAM!!!) won against the Red Sox last night 4-2 putting them up two games to 1 in the playoffs....Game 4 tonight at the "Jake"...GO TRIBE!!!!!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Weekend out....

Sunflowers at Hilger'sWith autumn reintroducing itself into the minds and hearts of midwesterners (after last week's near 90 degree temps and humidity!) my friend and I decided that we would take the weekend to see if the fall colours had started to show in the trees in NW Ohio and eastern Indiana. We started off Saturday morning on his very nice Kawasaki Vulcan 1600 in full leathers and full faced helmets (and YES I do have chaps and did where them!) south on Rt 23 from Sylvania to 24 toward Napoleon and other points west, namely our destination of Fort Wayne Indiana.

During the ride, we stopped in Napoleon to stretch our legs and grab a drink. We stopped at a truck stop across the road from Napoleon Harley, where there were a large number of bikes in the parking lot - obviously a rally or some other group activity going on....while we were at the counter to pay for our drinks and my ice cream treat (Snickers Ice cream bar YUM!) a voice from behind said, "You plan on winning everything again today?!" We turned to see one of the guys who was a participant in the Poker Run at the West Unity American Legion, which we attended several weeks ago. He had a big grin on his face and as we chatted, he disclosed that the event across the way was a Harley riders "Toys for Tots" event, with a band and food. He invited us to crash, but we had a plan and a timeline we had to stick to so we went our separate ways with a smile and a wave.

We traveled at a leisurely pace for about an hour and a half, stopping along the way to snap photos when the spirit moved us. We arrived in Fort Wayne and at our hotel just in time to see that there was a gaming convention and a wedding reception sharing our weekend worries....we took a short ride to "The Rib Room" for a great barbeque meal and then retired to our room to watch the Indians whip the butts of the Boston Red Sox.

On Sunday, we slept late and took in brunch at King Gyros, which was within walking distance of the hotel. If you are ever in Fort Wayne, you have to check this place gyros ever....

The day went by way too quickly on Sunday and much sooner than I would have liked, it was back to the grind of work and home is nice to take these little breaks from it all....I am at work today with a good attitude and ready to face whatever is thrown at me.

I will post a few photos from the trip in my SkyDrive and also on Flickr...till later...much love to you...


Thursday, October 11, 2007

God Bless Microsoft...

SkyDriveWith all the stuff that they do that pisses people off, it is kinda odd and funny that I would actually be saying something nice about anything they have implemented, operating system-wise or anything else. I will say that I have been a Hotmail user for about four years, and as such have progressively reaped the benefits of several "upgrades" or "enhancements" to the online suite of services that started out as "Spaces" and now has its presence in cyberspace as "Live". The transition from one to the other for most users was pretty ugly and painful, with every new solution coming after a very problematic and tiresome deployment stage. The current iteration of "Live" has come about in the last year or so, and seems to have finally been finessed to a pretty darned good level of stability (most of the time) and a tight integration of services to support all levels of internet-savvy users.

The most recent service I have taken advantage of is the online network storage solution branded "SkyDrive", tied to your "Live/Passport" account and providing 500 MB of online, accessible anywhere you can get to the internet storage space. The capacity to use this storage for both private file transfer and public file access makes this a great FREE (yes!!! absolutely FREE) solution for traveling folks or people who are at a distance from one another who want to share photos or other files. The folder structure when you first log on is arbitrary; you can create your own directories with three different levels of privacy (private, shared, or public) and you can upload pretty much anything you own.

So far, I really like this solution and am using it to house some of the photos that I use on this blog. If you want to take a look at the interface and even browse my public folders, follow this link to My SkyDrive to see why I am pretty excited about this.

That's it for now....till later, much love to you....


PS - As of October 12 the size of my SkyDrive increased to 1 just gets better and better! :)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

"Stuttering" - Ben's Brother

It's been, it's been, it's been, it's been su-su-su-such a long time-long time-long time
Since anybody touched me-touched me-touched me the way that you touch me......

So if I stutter-stutter-stutter, then I feel so-so-so unsexy...
So maybe I just keep my mouth shut...
At least until you kiss me...

So kiss me again, 'cuz only you can stop this stu-stu-stu-stu-stuttering...
Kiss me again and ease my su-su su-su su-su-su-suffering....

whoa....yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah...oh

I know, I know, it's so-its so sy-sy-sy-symbolic of everything
Everything thats wrong with me and you....
So tell me what I'm s'posed to do.....
Oh, it's been ages since we've been really honest,
But I can make ch-ch-ch-ch changes, if you really want this....

So kiss me again, 'cuz only you can stop this stu-stu-stu-stu-stuttering....
Kiss me again and ease my su-su su-su su-su-su-suffering....

Kiss me again, 'cuz only you can stop this stu-stu-stu-stu-stuttering....
Kiss me again and ease my su-su su-su su-su-su-suffering.....


Get to know this are hearing this song in the currently running Dentyne Ice "Kiss a Frog" commercial (look for it on YouTube) You can hook up with more information on the group including UK and US release dates for their album Beta Male Fairytales at their MySpace pageBens Brother London UK - Acoustic/Pop

This song speaks to me....enjoy...till later much love to you...


A quick post...

The young one has moved through "first degree" in the rush process for his fraternity and has a "Big Brother" and is learning his family lineage. Very busy and tired, but pleased at how things are going so far.

As for me, I am trying to keep things in perspective....more later...till then much love to you.


Monday, October 01, 2007

The flyer read.....

Emily - founder of Operation Support Our Troops in Northwestern Ohio...American Legion Riders Poker Run
to benefit Operation Support Our Troops
An area organization that sends needed supplies to active service members of NW Ohio
Sign in at 10 a.m - Kick stands up at 11

Last Bike In – 3:00 PM
Ride begins at the West Unity Legion, West Unity, OH
$10 per rider, $15 with passenger
Rain or Shine
Food and drinks available, patch sewing
For more information call Perry at 419-298-3667


The leaders of the pack...Over the weekend, my companion and I joined with the Harley Riders Group of the West Unity Post of the American Legion on a Poker Run, proceeds of which went to the local organization “Operation Support Our Troops”, a grassroots effort totally run on contributions by an ex-middle school teacher who has recently been diagnosed with leukaemia. The post raised over a thousand dollars from participants.

The day was beautiful for a ride and the people were all there to provide their monetary and visible support to this very worthy cause. The view behind from the center of the group...The included photos show what it is like to be a participant in the middle of the group in a poker run. A couple interesting things happened during the day….I won the poker hand at the end of the run, and the first place monies that went along with that, with a hand consisting of a king, two aces and three 4’s. There were also tickets sold for a fifty/fifty raffle and door prizes. We also won the fifty/fifty raffle with a value of nearly four hundred dollars, and we gave the money on behalf of the post to the lady who runs “Operation Support Our Troops”, increasing her total toward the cause from this event to about fourteen hundred dollars.

During the day, we saw a lot of beautiful scenery in NW Ohio, met many interesting people and were able to contribute to a worthy cause in a much more significant way than we had at first anticipated. It was a great weekend…my butt’s a little sore from all the riding, but every time I have to shift in my seat a little, it reminds me of the really fun time I had over the weekend!

Hope you enjoy the photos and the short narrative....till later, much love to you....


UT Symphonic Band...a late entry

Young one and the firstborn's Ann...My young one had his first official performance since his affiliation with the University of Toledo Department of Music last Thursday night at 8 PM at Doermann Theatre at University Hall. The photo at right shows him and the firstborn's Ann as they perform with the University of Toledo Symphonic Band under the direction of Dr Collins. Dr Jason Stumbo (of Communiversity Band and Rocket Marching Band fame) was also present conduction his group (which I do not recall the official name of) and a very enjoyable evening was had. The young one, unfortunately had a longer evening than this however, as his fraternity is responsible for the moving of equipment back to the Performing Arts building after the concert....his arrival home several hours later was the culmination of a grueling day for him and he took just long enough to grunt in my general direction as he staggered off to bed.

Hope you enjoy the photo...that's it for now....much love to you....


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

All I wanted.....

Laura Ingraham signs her new book in Perrysburg Ohio...was to pop into a newish bookstore in a newish strip center that I had never been to before...almost done with my current Stephen King ("Lisey's Story") and ready to pick up "The Cell" (yes, I know it has been out for a while....just never picked it up) What I was greeted with was an announcement over the store intercom stating "Good morning customers; if you are here for the Laura Ingraham book signing to begin at noon today, please make sure you have your books checked in, or if you need to purchase one, please visit the numerous displays in place throughout the store. Thank you." Hmmm...intriguing....I don't even know who this person is, but from the looks of the folks milling about in the store at only eleven o'clock, I thought it would be in my interest to pick up a copy of the book (to at least look at the book jacket) to find out.

I found that Ms Ingraham is a talk radio personality and author, categorized in the ranks of Ann Coulter, Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh. Although not a political person by design, I am not really all that fascinated with folks on this side of the political spectrum, and I was really torn if the draw of getting an autographed copy of the book was that strong, considering. In a moment of weakness I picked up my Stephen King, and impulsively walked to the check out with the other book in my hand as well...I would be lying if I said that I didn't think of laying it down and leaving without it at least once before the woman at the check out took my money.

After paying, I walked back to the front of the store, where the followers of Ann Ingraham were assembling. The thronging tens of them were any make and description of quintescential midwesterner you might be able to the front of the VIP line a very round and plain looking woman with Dr Scholl's type sandals with stars and stripes on the straps, homemade cookies in a Tupperware container and a plain white envelope (which we found later to have a contribution, which was acknowledged before the rest of the waiting folks). The rest of the mix was very much the same...pasty white guys and their bossy wives/girlfriends, and outspoken older folks, both male and female, that agree with Ms Ingraham that America is going to hell in a handbasket and something has to be done about it.

My line companions were, to the front of me, a married man who was there because he heard of the signing while engaged in his daily listening and to the rear, a sometimes talkative and very opinionated older lady who had no trouble letting everyone around her know exactly her thoughts on anything and everything. As she engaged me in conversation and I realized exactly what I had gotten myself into, my mantra became "Nod and smile....nod and smile..." and for goodness sake don't say anything stupid!
Her opinions regarding politicians, family and the state of the country were about what I had expected, given age and obvious affiliation...I seemed to be nodding at the appropriate times, as it appeared that I was ingratiating myself to her somewhat. At one point, when engaging me in a little more personal conversation, she made a comment on my relatively dark tan...slyly hinting that my legs were very dark, but she bet that my "rear" was very white....I thought for a tick on just the right way to come at the topic, then gestured with an index finger that she should lean in a little so that i could talk quietly in her ear. When she did, I said only this, "No, my butt is just as dark as the rest of me...I tan naked in the tanning bed." With that I stood up again and smiled a little amused smile. She looked at me as if I had told her I eat children, took a step back, and did not engage me in personal conversation for the duration of our wait in line....she appears in the photo that is in the upper left of this entry (she, left and Ingraham, right).

In any case, I escaped unscathed, a signed copy of Ms Ingraham's book in my possession; the author spent no longer with me than absolutely necessary to sign the book...(perhaps she got wind of my nasty secret...***hearty belly laugh***). It was an interesting beginning to the afternoon...and I imagine that since I bought the book I will probably at least peruse it a bit....perhaps the next time I go to the tanning salon ;-)

That's it for now....till later, much love to you....


Saturday, September 22, 2007 wanna be a "voice talent"?.....

At work on Friday, while intent on something on my laptop screen, one of the "e" guys came over to the cube wall by my desk with a bundle of paper in his hand and asked me this question. Basically, what they needed was someone to read sound bytes for a project they are working on - they record the segments and then they are used in an interactive activity that they are building for a client. I was able to experience recording in the studio (first time I have really seen how it works) and when the project is all done (and as long as the script does not get altered again and get re-recorded by someone else) my voice will be representing interaction between a customer service representative and a customer in a training tool for a cable/internet service provider.

Pretty cool huh? This ROOT place just gets more and more interesting every day!

That's it for now....till later, much love to you....


PS - to my friend who just had surgery....I am thinking of you and look forward to hearing from you when you feel up to it <3

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Wildwood Metropark in autumn....

On the covered bridge at WildwoodThis was a beautiful weekend to be outdoors....the skies of Ohio were blue and bright with the occasional cloud from time to time and the air was cool and beginning to give a hint of the autumn that is coming soon. I spent an afternoon in the park, walking and taking photos of the changing leaves, the autumn flowers and the interesting structures that are on the grounds. The photo at the left was taken in the covered bridge...the water below meandering slow and calm beneath, causing the sunlight to flicker and sparkle on its surface and casting an interesting shadow dance on the ceiling inside the bridge.

Hope you had a wonderful weekend and had time to enjoy the beautiful fall weather in Ohio....I look forward to many more cool and beautiful weekends...and as they happen and I find photogenic places to go, I will share them here with you....there are a few more photos of the park (and me) in the current additions to my Flickr account, accessible by clicking on the Flickr banner at the right.

Till later, much love to you....


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Thanks for not being part of the "nerd herd"....

I was recently congratulated on my ability to leverage my "technology prowess" without draping myself in the mantle of IT superiority with this very humorous and heart-felt compliment. In this age when every person in most industrialized countries are dependent on technology of all types to conduct business, stay connected and get through their daily lives with some level of competency, the roll of the IT professional has moved well beyond the "geek in the server room", with black plastic framed eyeglasses held together with tape, to a more accessible, friendly and customer-oriented facilitator, charged with the task of assuring that technology "works", in whatever capacity the user requires.

This recognition has contributed greatly to the success of the group Geek Squad, whose affiliation with the company Best Buy as their on-call, on-site tech support professionals has set a new standard for the IT geek and their place in the home/small business technology user's arsenal of technology resources. The Geek Squad image, although slightly reminiscent of the quintescential geek, shows younger folks, male and female, bedecked in their chosen "geek uniform" (admittedly spec-ed out to inspire confidence and be unintimidating), but still "cool". Their manner is also the product of specific training...their approach is meant to make them easy to talk to, friendly and cooperative; totally contradictory to what so many people have experienced in IT support experiences of the past.

In my job, I take the "Geek Squad" approach - which is easy for me, because it was not THAT many years ago that I was on the other side of the tech support equation...I also have been able to leverage my skills in a more personal and accessible private venture that I call "Creative Tech Solutions"; offering my help to home folks (mostly people that I already know) with their home and small business technology challenges....the best part? Success for the folks I work with without a lot of pain....IT is looking better every day....hurray for the geek squad...SO LONG, "nerd herd"!

That's it for now....till later, much love to you...


Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Toledo Blade and WTVG TV13 Toledo Present....

Thr Root Spelling Bee TeamThe Scripps Corporate and Community Spelling Bee to benefit "Read for Literacy"...When I was working in the Creative area of the office (Park or "Garden" level)on my very famous and successful "deployment project", I commandeered a desk within very close proximity of the proofing staff...the two ladies who single-handedly assure that every "customer-facing" Rootster is articulate and erudite in their written communications. These amazing women also assure that all materials produced for clients are grammatically accurate and all spellings are correct (not only for US customers, but also for Spanish,French, Japanese, and British English, just to name a few) These ladies have participated for the last two years in this spelling bee event for charity, there presence funded by donation to "Read for Literacy" by Root. This year, one of our two proofers is occupied in a very important and time consuming project and was not going to able to attend. This is where my close proximity to them and my penchant for writing, proofreading and innate spelling skill came into play. The ladies were aware of my "mad skills"; I have a reputation for being a little wordy but interesting in internal emails....on an impulse one day about two months ago, one of the ladies mentioned that the contest was coming up and the team was a "man" down...she suggested "You should do it this year!" Without a moments hesitation (or thought, really) I agreed. Not until later, when I started to discuss the process with them, and later still when I was issued my expansive notebook of the half of the alphabet I was to study, did I realize what I had gotten myself involved with.

I studied in my usual way...the method I have used since my high school years....wait till the last minute...(gasp! I must be so shocked!!!)...frantically pawing through page after page of word lists this past weekend and looking at the lists every chance I had during the day at work the last few days.....I was really starting to panic....there was no way that I was going to be an asset to the team (more like an "A**" I thought) I was worried that I would make Root look foolish since their name was affixed to everything involved with us being at the contest, and I was more upset about the prospect of letting the ladies down who had enough confidence in me to ask me to participate with them. Both of them were generous and kind as they assuaged my fears...."Do your best, and Have Fun" they both advised...."we know you will do just fine".

Today, as we were getting ready to leave for the competition, the lady who was not able to participate this year made a point of finding us to wish us luck. She also provided us with a mesh pouch with a half dozen small polished stones inside...each stone, she explained had a "power"...which it would impart to us, as we held them in our hands as we spelled. I was grateful for her thoughtfulness...and held tightly to one of the stones the entire time....feeling its smoothness and concentrating on its power (strength) it was easier for me to sit on the platform with the 34 other teams and actually feel that OUR team had as much of a chance as anyone else there to be successful.

We arrived at the venue in time for a very quick attempt at the lunch provided, the officials were introduced (one of them a teacher from the school district in which I was the Help Desk Tech before I came to Root) then all the participants were herded into the hall outside the contest room to be lined up for introductions and the walk to the risers where we were to sit. The entry was made through open double doors, each team being announced by business affiliation and then the individuals' names....they went to great lengths to make this part exciting and fun.....each team entered the hall through a cloud of "smoke" to the strains of some triumphant sounding musical fanfare (probably Rocky theme, now that I think on it!) The announcer was the voice of the Toledo Mudhens (who happens to be the sig other of one of our folks at the office) Our team was introduced as "The returning 2006 champions, Root Learning, team members Alma ******* and Vicki Timman"....I would be a liar if I said that this part was not fun (in a contrived sort of way)

We proceeded through the first round with the local celebrity talking heads who were participating for WTVG going out on the word "condolences"....we quietly offered ours as they left the platform. Round after round, continued to be teammate with her own set of "mad skills" assuring that we were right on with every word we were asked to spell. Ultimately we were in a small elimination group of four teams, where we finally met our killer word...."halophyte"...pronounced badly by the word guy....but that's OK....we still ended up with a very respectable 3rd....a little trophy to display in the office with our names engraved on it, and a good experience this year that will make it easy for us to accept next year, if Root decides to participate.

When we returned to the office, the folks there already knew how we had finished. The Creative team had already printed posters of congratulations and as we arrived we came upon them affixing the posters to every entry/exit door on both floors of our matter where we went, folks stopped us to congratulate...and also to hear the killer word....everyone was interested and excited that we made it in the contest as far as we had.

The photo at the top of this entry is of me and my teammate, proofer was taken on the platform only a moment or two before the competition was to begin, so the quality is questionable at best, although it does generally reflect our positive attitudes as we embarked on this literary adventure this afternoon.

Hope you enjoyed my view of the day....that's it for now....till later, much love to you....


Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day weekend...

Fallen Timbers MonumentEveryone has had to work at least part of the weekend, with the young one working on Saturday AND Sunday and the firstborn working Monday....I even went in on Saturday, trying to get my head around the stuff that will be coming up fast and furious on Tuesday morning. The young one was off today and went to play "Guitar Hero" with a couple friends. I decided to do some sight-seeing....went to Maumee Bay State Park, Farnsworth Metropark in Waterville to eat my dinner (cut veggies with dip and a Jones Green Apple) by the Maumee River, and on the way home stopped at Fallen Timbers Monument in Maumee. Photos from the roam-around are on Flickr, if you are interested.

Well, back to it...stuff to get started before tomorrow morning...hope you had a relaxing weekend...till later, much love to you...


Thursday, August 30, 2007


Who cares?

Monday, August 27, 2007

Currently thinking about.....

Interpol - No "I" in Threesome

- from the album Our Love to Admire (2007)

Through the storms and the light
Baby, you stood by my side
And life is wine
But there are days in this life
When you see the teeth marks of time
Two lovers divide
Sound meets sound, babe
The echoes, they surround
And know that we need is one thing
Now what is there to allow?
Babe, it's time we give something new a try
Oh, alone we may fight
So, just let us be free
And baby tonight
I see your lips are on fire
And life is wine
Now the windows are open the moon is so bright
There's no one can tell us what love brings, you and I
Sound meets sound, babe
The echoes they surround
And know that we need is one thing
Now what is there to allow
Babe, it's time we give something new a try
Oh, alone we may fight
So just let us be free, tonight
Through the storms and the light
Baby you stood by my side
And life is wine
You feel the sweet breath of time
It's whispering, its truth not mine
There's no I in threesome
And I am all for it
Babe, it's time we give something new a try
Oh, alone we may fight
And feathers bend like trees in the moonlight
Babe, it's time we give something new a try
Oh, alone we may fight
So just let us be free tonight

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Some people really need to stop using the "mat"....

From the movie, Office Space (1998)

"It was a "Jump to Conclusions" mat. You see, it would be this mat that you would put on the floor... and would have different CONCLUSIONS written on it that you could JUMP TO."

- Tom Smykowski


I have been mulling over some occurrences recently....some interactions I have had with "friends"...folks that I felt I understood and trusted and that understood and trusted me....I have come to realize that there is a level of understanding and trust that I extend to people that seems not to come naturally to others, either because of their life experiences, some deep-seated self-doubt, a sort of protecting behaviour, because they have been hurt when trusting people before, or something else which I do not have the capacity to understand. All I do know for sure is that for these people, there is no question that all actions of others are first and foremost rooted in insidiously bad intentions...there is nothing that can be said or done EVER to change that ingrained, gut reaction. People like me get very frustrated with that sort of reaction....even when disappointed by people, I tend to let those things pass...there is nothing accomplished by holding grudges or keeping only tends to hurt YOU and the person who you feel has disappointed you is often unaware of how serious you feel the injury was that they were responsible for.

My recent experiences have made me painfully aware that the wrestling match of trust that I have been having with a few of my "friends" can no longer continue....these people have already gotten their pre-release copy of the "Jump to Conclusions" mat and use it regularly with regard to me, and there is nothing I can ever do to change that behaviour. I feel like a failure as a friend for admitting that I am giving up the struggle, but that is something I will have to work through on my the meantime, I will keep moving forward with my own good intentions and trusting attitude intact and hope for the best for the folks who insist on keeping their fatalistic outlook on people and relationships....

Till later, much love to you,


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

A difficult choice....

I received a phone call from the young one at noontime, as I have several times during the past week since marching band rehearsals have begun. It started out much in the normal way, with noise in the background and the young one talking about the morning's is sometimes the case when you are caught off-guard, I was trying hard to listen to the phone call and continue with my work in progress as well...until I heard the words that stopped my heart..."I can't do it anymore...I'm leaving the marching band...going to talk to the director at 1 o'clock"....I was absolutely stunned, and obviously by the tone of the young one's voice, he was struggling as well. He did not want to talk to me about the decision at that time and had another commitment to keep before his meeting with the directors, so we parted phone company then... I was left to worry and wonder...what could have possibly happened this morning to make the young one want to let this treasured goal, finally achieved, go?

I discovered out later in the day that the stress of the strenuous rehearsal schedule had finally become too much for him to bear...he had come to the cold realization that even after all the challenges and obstacles he had overcome to attain this position on the drumline, he was not physically capable of maintaining the grueling energy level that participating in the band required. His admission to himself of his lack of preparation in that regard was probably the most difficult thing he has ever done...he is not one to give up when the going gets rough...but he realized in his heart that there was no way that physical fitness and stamina was going to magically be granted to him in the final few days before classes and performances officially begin.

He will be realigning his course work for this academic year to include Symphonic Band as his large ensemble (required of music majors) and has spoken of making it his goal to become fit enough to audition and participate in Marching Band next fall. Field percussion is a passion for him, and the lack of its presence this fall for the first time in four years will be difficult...but it will also be a motivating force...I look forward to watching his progress in this quest and participating if I can....please send the young one your good thoughts...his journey is just beginning....

Till later, much love to you...



Too much exposure? Too many hits? Coming back too high on the list of boolean search results from Google, Dogpile or Yahoo? How many people are you acquainted with that would like that to be their fact labour long and hard to make just such a thing occur?

I have decided that I have too many places to maintain content on and as a result, they all are half-hearted efforts and do not reflect my real abilities or intent as I keep a presence in cyberspace. For that reason, I am making a conscious decision to continue actively participating in only one social networking site (Facebook), one full fledged blogging site (Blogger), one site with a personalized domain name ( one photo sharing service (Flickr) and one flash blogging service (Twitter). I am not eliminating other sites where my name and presence appear, but over time they will become static and probably become defunct on their own.

In the over-abundance of places to "Put things", there is a significant amount of garbage being created...I am tired of contributing to mediocre content just for the sake of having a presence on every server on the internet. Goodbye to the many and here's hoping that the few I choose to support will contain content worth your effort to peruse.

Much love to you, till later


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Everybody's Zooin' it....Toledo Zoo - August 11, 2007

Meat eaters in the aquarium...Having a beautiful day and nothing in particular that I HAD to do, I decided to make a visit to the Toledo Zoo...haven't spent a great deal of time there since the kids were younger. Driving down to the Broadway entrance (back side) I recalled all the Mondays that I took the huge mob of kids (my own and the ones I was babysitter for back then) to the zoo for free, how much fun we had running willy-nilly from one end of the zoo to the other, having little snacks and when I was really "flush" everyone picking out a souvenir from the gift shop.

When I got inside the gates, I soon discovered that this particular Saturday was some sort of family day at the zoo...lots of families with youngsters with the accompanying wagons, strollers, whining and crying children and irritated parents....even at that, all I could do was smile....thinking back to my own kids and our own experiences....not much like these I was own brood was pretty even tempered and knew that if they wanted to continue to have fun activities to fill their days, they had better make every good effort to stay that way!

I walked to all the places that hold appeal for me at the zoo and captured them in photos (see the new Flickr entries for today) I was using my new camera, a pink Polaroid 5 megapixel (a small bump up from my 3.2 mpx HP Photosmart) I like it just fine, the pink is for a donation to Susan Kolmen breast cancer research, and it suits my recent "pinked up" appearance.....added bonus...the photos are really noticeably better than some taken with my old one.

Take a look at the photos if you like....bout all I got for now....more as time allows and interesting things present themselves....much love to you till then....


Friday, August 10, 2007

FINALLY...something worth writing about!

As those who know me know, the young one is now an official freshman at the University of Toledo as a Music Education major. His first large ensemble activity for the academic year is his all time favourite activity, marching band, having auditioned and been accepted into the UT Rocket Marching Band. Band rehearsals started Wednesday evening, with the young one only knowing that he was in the band, but not knowing what percussion position he would be serving in. He had been through several clinics at UT with the percussion line section leaders and the percussion professor. He had expressed his preference for instrument when asked, and was very nervous once the rehearsals began, not knowing for sure if his choice instrument would be the one he would actually be allowed to play for this football season. He has been through several days of arduous rehearsal time and until today was not absolutely positive whether he would be a "drummer" or a "cymbal player" in the UT marching band.......

UNTIL TODAY....when positions were finally announced.....and the winner is.....MY YOUNG ONE!!!! He is one of two freshman percussionists in the quad section of the UT Marching the pressure of unsure is gone and the pressure of overachieve can kick that I know he is more than up to....a HUGE "attaboy" to the young one and here's looking forward to a fantastic Rocket Football season!

Till later, much love to you....


Saturday, July 28, 2007

Water Fascination....

Sentry gulls...I had intended to spend another Saturday afternoon in Port Clinton today, but my favourite place to go there is the public beach, to sit in the sand and enjoy the water and sun; unfortunately the Ohio weather was not cooperating, with overcast skies and spotty showers all day. Instead of heading for Port Clinton today, I headed south to visit my favourite coffee house there and spend some time exploring the area, which is one with which I am becoming quite familiar.

For some reason, this summer I have grown into a "water person" of sorts....I am finding enjoyment being around it, seeing the waves lap the shore of whatever body of water I am at...walking the beaches and shorelines and enjoying the parks and picnic areas that are usually around them. This is an amazing thing to me; I, the person with the aversion, nay, fear of the water. I do not swim and become petrified to the point of tears when in a swimming pool, but the lakes and ponds, in being around them, seem to have some calming effect on my soul. I leave them feeling renewed and in touch with myself again...I imagine that this may be the reason that folks buy boats and lakeside homes....

In any case, today, I took a long walk along the top of the banks of the reservoirs outside of Findlay...after an iced tea at the coffee shop and a walk through the weekend event taking place downtown...the current photos in the Flickr album are from there...

That's it for now...still may make it to Port Clinton tomorrow, but first have to finish a job for a friend and get their equipment back to them...back to work for awhile...more later if there is anything interesting to say...much love to you..


Sunday, July 22, 2007

It's not Hawaii, but the intent (and result) is the same....

Married on the sand on July 21, 2007....With the weather this weekend as nice and cool for Ohio as it was, I made another trip to Port Clinton, with a bit of forethought this time so I could really enjoy my time there and be comfortable. I stopped on the way out of Toledo to pick up a book to read while sitting in the sun on the beach and assured that I had my folding chair snugly packed away in the trunk of my little car. The drive was nice...brilliant blue sky and bright sunshine giving the day such crisp detail and beautiful color that everything I saw seemed like a photo op to me, and I finally just had to force myself to lay my camera down and drive, or miss it all because of my obsessive snapping.

Once I arrived in Port Clinton, it was obvious that I was not the only one who was appreciative of our Ohio weather good fortune...the streets were thronging with folks on foot or in cars, so much different from the last time I was here when it was so ungodly hot and humid. I headed toward the public beach (it was a little before 11 AM) and I was surprised to see that there were many free spots in the parking area. As I locked up the car and got all my things together, I noted the cool breeze blowing across the road from the and felt good as it passed over my hot from the car skin. I loaded myself up with my supplies and crossed the street to the beach.

As I stepped upon the sand and looked over the beach, I was astonished to find that as far as sun worshipers went, I was one of only three there. I scanned from one end of the short public patch to the other...then stopped short, amazed at the tableau that appeared before my eyes....the scene, one that so many girls dream about....a light breeze, a small group of friends, a flowing white dress and a minister on the sand by the water...a wedding in progress....the beginning of a new chapter in two people's lives, just happened upon by the random decision to "go to the beach"....

It was a very short ceremony...I had arrived at what had appeared from the distance to be the exchange of vows a mere few minutes the couple was in a passionate embrace, him holding her so tightly that he picked her up off her feet and spun her around, her flowing white skirt fluttering in the breeze. There were then hugs for all the half dozen attendees and the clean up of the cameras and other accouterments of the occasion, then the happy group started their short walk up to the exit from the beach and assumably to their luncheon celebration. The bride walked barefoot, carrying her sandals in one hand and holding fast to her new husband with the other. He, carefully assisting in her progress on the soft sand, looked at her with affection and chatted amiably with the others in the party, surely relatives or friends who were there to share the moment with them. I watched this procession with appreciation...what a nice day for a wedding and how happy they appeared at this moment...although I am not acquainted with either the bride or groom, I silently wished them luck and happiness....a leap of love and faith...but a crap shoot whether it will last a lifetime or die in a day...

will they survive...I spent a long time on the beach after the wedding party left, reading Stephen King (Lisey's Story - great book so far, by the way) and napping when I felt the cool air from the lake make me drowsy. The unfortunate part of the great breeze was that it made me totally unaware of how long I was actually in the sun. When I awoke from my last micro-nap, I became aware that my arms and thighs were warm and staying that way, even with the breeze. When I opened my eyes, I could see that I was pretty badly sunburned....I sit this afternoon coated in Noxema to soothe the pain...hopefully I will not peel....and right now, my sunburn is a very stark contrast to my blonde hair that continues to get lighter the longer I am in the sun.

Today was much quieter and spent on the day to day things that have to be done to keep a civil house...the firstborn did not have to work today, and the young one worked open till 5 (just arrived home). I have some other things to get to, so am done with this entry for now...for more of what I have seen lately, check out my Flickr account at the right...till to you...


Thursday, July 19, 2007

No reason to be surprised....

I told you so....Sooo....checking back here to see if I have posted something new...visiting to live a little vicariously through my entries, or just be a voyeur in my and my close acquaintances personal lives....noticing that it has been awhile since I have posted anything new....there is a reason for that....


I have been struggling to find reason to keep on writing every day on this site and have found little to inspire or spur me on in recent weeks...until the dry spell passes, you can keep checking back or not...obviously it doesn't matter enough for a comment or encouragement...maybe I will get some golden flash of enlightenment...meh...who knows.... back sometime...when I have something I want to say...


Thursday, July 12, 2007

Sylvania Ohio Activities - July 12, 2007

Takin it to the street....Today was the first day of actual tournament play for the Jamie Farr. Today was also the second annual "Takin' It to the Street" community festival, featuring food, a farmer's market, and music, including the regional entertainment personality, Eddie Boggs, shown in the photo, left. Hope you had an opportunity to participate in whichever event interested you...the second day of the LPGA will be taking place tomorrow.

Till then, much love to you....


Sunday, July 08, 2007

The LPGA Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic presented by Kroger

On the course at Highland Meadows Golf ClubAs happens every year in Sylvania, the LPGA is coming to town to take over Highland Meadows Country Club golf course to hold the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic presented by Kroger. The country club is but a stone's throw from my house, and I and all my neighbors will be favored with the following during this week:

- horrible traffic snarls from early morning until late in the evening
- constant fly-overs by helicopters, blimps and small planes
- lots of strange people wandering the streets of our small community
- media swarming the golf course and surrounding area all week long

I know that in principal, this is a humongous feather in the cap of the city, and even in the inconvenience, there are a lot of folks who manipulate this event to their financial advantage (you will see photos later this week documenting how that actually happens). I have exposure to the other side of the coin...the young one for several years was a member of the brigade of young people whose services are exploited to assure that this event is successful (yes, the vast majority of folks who will be bad mouthed and abused by the visiting "guests" are volunteers, unfortunately)...

So folks, as you visit our fair city, take advantage of our hospitality and amenities, and please remember that the folks that live here every day are holding out hope that this year, the impressions we leave on each other at our parting at the end of this week will be favorable ones.

More later....much love to you...


For more photos of the prep for the LPGA Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic presented by Kroger, please feel free to click on the Flickr badge at the right to view my uploaded photos.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

"A time will come when a politician who has willfully made war and promoted international dissension will be as sure of the dock and much surer of the noose than a private homicide. It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men's lives should not stake their own..."

-- H.G. Wells

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Mount up...

Under the helmet, the smile that cannot be peeled off...In a frenzy of intense interest, the young one and the firstborn both have acquired older (but in very good condition) motorcycles...the young one a '77 Honda CB400 and the firstborn a '82 Yamaha Maxim 550. The excitement around these machines has the entire household abuzz with activities that range from finding places to secure them, going over them to assure mechanical integrity, procuring appropriate safety gear, registering them for tags, and last but certainly not least, beginning the process of learning to create a working relationship with these very different modes transportation.

The firstborn, as seems to be his way with all things mechanical, has taken to riding like a duck to water, after a very short learning period. The young one, on the other hand, has been challenged to master a whole new skill set (shifting, choke, hand breaks, etc, etc) before he can enjoy the thrill of the open road (so to speak). He has gone from frustrated to energized today, as he has taken some very huge steps to making his motorcycle riding goals become a reality. The photo, above, captures the spirit of our early morning driving session, which took place at the high school in the parking lot. The young one riding, and the firstborn getting wayyyy too much exercise, the young one was able to start the bike and put it into first gear and ride many series of runs first straight, and then with a little turning, around the parking lot. At the end, he was excited and pleased....he had that "smile that would not go away" under his helmet as he took it off at the end of his practice session for he left for work, it was still there. I think his misfortunes at the onset of the experiment have served to give him healthy respect for his accomplishments promises to be a great experience for all...

That's it for now...much love to you...


Saturday, June 30, 2007

Crisis of blogging confidence....

Once depressed, it can never be taken backOK, so I am beginning to question whether there is really any reason to keep coming back here and posting every add cool links that I like and other share what is going on in life in my part of the world. I have always maintained that the main reason that I blog is for me...and I have been more than OK with that since 2003, when I created my first blog here at Blogspot/Blogger to talk about the school levy in the district that I was working in at the time. Through the last several years of blogging, it has been responsible for the birth (and most likely death) of a friendship that I came to cherish very much and the loss of a job that I thought I would be in until I retired.

That is not to say that there has not been a great deal to be thankful for that has resulted from blogging...I have learned a TON...about the internet and how it works, and how to use it to your advantage, and about people...what motivates them...both positive and negative....

I know that there is a core group of folks that regularly visits here...I watch the traffic every day and smile to see that you return. I try to create content that amuses and engages you, as well as entries that reflect for you what is important to me and my peeps....if you like what you read or something pisses you off, make a thing I do know after years of doing this is that every blogger reaches a limit where the rationalization of "I really write for myself" doesn't ring true for even THEM anymore...I guess what I am saying is that I think I may have reached that point...some input would be welcome...everyone likes to be encouraged from time to time...but no worries...this is probably nothing more than a temporary malaise...the down time that bloggers are bound to experience eventually....putting out the thought processes here, for those of you who care enough to read...

till later, much love to you....


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

"In loneliness, in sickness, in confusion.....

Celtic Knot...the mere knowledge of friendship makes it possible to endure, even if the friend is powerless to help. It is enough that they exist. Friendship is not diminished by distance or time, by imprisonment or war, by suffering or silence. It is in these things that it roots most deeply. It is from these things that it flowers."

This is for the people that mean the most to me, whether near or far...I think of you often and with love.....


Monday, June 25, 2007

And the winner is....(drum roll please...)

Cavaliers Salute - All Star Revue - UT, Toledo, 2007The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps from Rosemont Illinois....after a few days away, the young one and I did our annual summer duty and attended the DCI All Star Revue at the University of Toledo Glass Bowl on Saturday night. The young one absolutely hates it that I take a million photos (not really...but several hundred...and video clips too), but after the event is over and we take a look at the photos that are the best ones, he is pretty happy that I do. I have a pretty good camera, and as a rule follow the "battery" (drumline) when the corps are on the field, so I usually collect a great bunch of photos of percussionists of each group that performs. The unfortunate part is that sometimes I do miss other things on the field, but that is not very often, and honestly the percussionists are what interest me most anyway (hmmm...wonder why?)

Today, I have my last day off from work and the young one and I will be heading back to UT for "Rocket Launch", orientation and registration for incoming freshmen and transfer students. We will spend most of the day there, talking to folks and getting things ready for his first quarter at UT in the fall...should be interesting and informative (that is the point, I think) and it will be nice to spend the time with the young one. If I take photos while on campus (that may be pushing the young one a little too much!) I will post them for you...there are also a few more drum corps photos that I really like that I would like to share, so I may be back to post them later as well....

Till then (whenever that will be) much love to you....


Sunday, June 17, 2007

Getting ready to travel

As unreliable a proposition as my Blackberry has become recently, even in my regular service area, I'm gonna give blogging from it a shot as I head off for a few days. Not doiing anything spectacular, but will post a llittle some thing here and some photos on as long as service will allow. Hopefully I will come back rested and a little tan......low expectations set, especially after the horror show of March

Will see what happens when I get there.....if you don't hear from me here this week, you will know the service sucked and I will back on Saturday for All-star Revue at UT with the young one

Till later, much love to you

Sent from Vicki Timman's BlackBerry Wireless Device

Thursday, June 14, 2007

So nice to have this to fall back on when I have nothing I really want to say.....


The Apathetic Online Journal Entry Generator

With kudos to Lore Sjöberg (The Slumbering Lungfish - Dybbuk Hostel and All-Night Boulangerie) at The Brunching Shuttlecocks here is my blog entry for today...if you are a blogger and a little on the light side for content, check out the link above for a fill piece until you get your game back on....luv ya, mean it, 'bye! v


So it goes...

My life's been completely unremarkable these days. Today was a loss, but such is life. I've just been staying at home doing nothing.

Current Mood: jejune

Monday, June 11, 2007

Graduation - June 10, 2007

Matt and Sara - graduatedThe young one graduated from high school today in a ceremony punctuated by a speech from the Salutatorian which glorified going for what you desire at all costs, and the address from the Valedictorian, which made a reference to "coming out of the closet". One of the assistant principals was recovering from an injury to her leg and was sporting an ACE bandage from ankle to knee, the super gave a nod of acknowledgment as he walked by to mount the stairs to the stage, and one of our school board members gave a very emotionally charged speech riddled with song lyrics and encouraging the graduates to live and experience life.

Matt and BradThe young one was fortunate enough to sit in close proximity to his Sara and next to the Teague twins, two of his best friends at NV. The redundancy of cameras we had in our group (the firstborn and his Ann and myself) assured that we pretty much covered every possible battery failure and focus problem. Not all the media has been viewed yet, and the most important images are forever ingrained in my young one has graduated high school...heads off to college, to really start building for the rest of his life...I am so proud...and sad..and humble...such a wonderful child....such a talented young man...

Till later, much love to you,


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Late Post - Rootsters Raft 10 Mile Creek in Sylvania

Rootsters Get Ready to Raft 10 Mile Creek

Root Rafting Update

The outstanding individuals who are featured in the photo above did indeed pursue their rafting adventure down the famous (in Sylvania) 10 Mile Creek as far as their rafts would allow. They passed under the bridge at Harroun Road and headed toward the Sylvania Country Club on the east side of Rt 23, and by all accounts were received with wry humour and without any suspicion of malicious intent. Once through the country club grounds (pretty much the golf course), they headed on into the back yards of the pricey properties of Corey Road. At that point the raft of one of our heroes sprung an unrecoverable leak and a second exhibited signs of taking on water so the trip was cut short.

Unfortunately for our hail and hearty men, they realized too late that noone had had the presence of mind to include a cellular phone or other communications device in their sparse provisions and once they clamoured through mud and tall grasses to the clearing, they were incommunicado, and disoriented, not sure exactly where they had arrived AT. They began to walk, rafts in tow and wet and muddied from their adventures, through the very affluent area. They happened upon a man working in his yard and bade him direct them to the nearest large roadway so they could begin to get their bearings. The man directed them vaguely toward Sylvania Avenue and Corey Road and that is the direction they headed. On the way, they noted a pizza delivery person retreating from a recent drop off at a home and asked HIM for directions and the favour of using his mobile phone to make a call to a companion of one of the rafters, who had agreed to retrieve them at the end of their trek. The pizza man was less than thrilled with being accosted by these strange individuals, and was even very much less inclined to hand his cell phone over to them outright. He dialed the agreed upon number, handed the phone to the rafter so he could talk to his companion for a few mere moments to indicate where they would perform their rendezvous, and off they walked again to travel to the agreed upon location. Once arriving at their spot to wait, they actually became acquainted with a family who was recreating in their yard with their children, who were very interested in their quest and talked to them for quite a while until their ride arrived. Interestingly enough, observed on their fence as the motley crew was departing was the sign “NO TRESPASSING”….and these were the NICE people!

Anyway, it is much cooler to hear the story from the guys who did the rafting, but this is the summary for you, in case you were wondering….hope you enjoyed visualizing their trip…it was very fun to watch!

Much love to you….


Saturday, June 09, 2007

My Best friend's Daughter's wedding....

On the grounds of the Stranahan estateThrough the last month or so, if you asked him how things were going, he would reply in his offhand sort of way something about wedding bills, wedding plans. Ask him how he felt about walking his daughter down the aisle, and "giving her away"; he would cavalierly comment that she was an adult and the soon-to-be husband was a long time boyfriend, so there was nothing new for him to be concerned about. He made it all sound so mundane...but I know him well and know better than that.

Daddy and his baby girl - the long walkToday, under a perfect blue summer sky, with family and friends there to share it with him, his little girl got married....his baby..the apple of his eye...the only totally perfect female in the world, became the wife of some man who walked into her life and won her love. In the long walk from the Manor House to the gazebo in the shade of the tall oaks, I can only guess at the swirl of emotion in his heart...her passage into her adult life, the closure of a little part of his...taking on a new role in her life...still daddy, and always special...someday, "grandpa" to her babies with her new husband...

I was there only as a casual observer...a member of the public in a public place who "happened upon" this very personal and private event. All my love is with him and his family on this day....even at a distance, I felt joy at their joy...and pride and love for him, on this special day in HIS life as well as hers.

That's all for now....much love to you, on this day of love's celebration....


Thursday, June 07, 2007

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Pardon me....

A yawn or smacked head, or both...While I tired the last week or so, I barely make it to 8 PM before I pass out like a bear going into hibernation. Even with the recent heat in Ohio, I have been so drawn to my pillow that I have drifted off quite a few times without even making an effort at a meal, or even seeing the kids when they get home from work.

I have heard that stress will manifest in all kinds of ways, and perhaps that is what this is...I really am NOT usually such a slug...lots of things going on with the young one and school coming up in the fall, the new office and all the stuff that keeps coming up that needs fixed since the move...the death of a friendship that I treasured a great deal...I know...buck up...I suppose I will...but for now, I cope with my tiredness, and now, adding to the fun, a new symptom, periodic hives...whoohoo! Some people really know how to have a good time, eh?

Anyway...till later...much love to you...

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Friday, June 01, 2007

Recognition and rehearsals begin...

Sylvania Northview High School Class of 2007May 30 was the last day for seniors at NV and yesterday was the "Senior Assembly" at the high school. The assembly is basically held so that the underclassmen and parents have the opportunity to learn of the accomplishments of the senior class and some very prominent scholarships are officially awarded to their recipients at this time.

My young one and the Teague twins - Class of 2007Today, the young one will go to the Stranahan/ Masonic complex in South Toledo, transported by city school busses (legal issues require it) to rehearse for the actual ceremony to take place on June 10. I will not be able to be there to take photos (I'm sure that breaks the young one's heart!) so the next photos regarding graduation will be taken at the actual event. Keep the young one in your goods thoughts...he is participating in a rite of passage that we all have experienced, and having all the angst that goes with that...the end of one part of life, and transition into a new one...thankfully he has good friends and his Sara to share this experience should be a good one...

Till later, much love to you...


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Welcome to Sylvania, Rootizens!

New sign for our new home...Today I arrived at the new space very early, thinking that the IT folks would be as concerned and excited as I was about making sure that we were ready for the arrival of our users...our co-workers...The work today was fast and furious; many folks who work on laptops and all the folks in need of their security devices for the space (we have taken pains to assure that the areas are secured even though there are public access points in close proximity to them).

I am still at the office, waiting for an emergency issue to be addressed, then I will go home for the night. It is the lot of the IT person, and so very much it has been that of my bosses, to spend long and thankless hours at work behind the scenes to assure that things flow without difficulty for the staff of the organization.

Tomorrow, it will be better and I may even have an opportunity to put my desk together (have nothing more than a phone, computer and a bunch of junk on it so far) There are still contractors here working in the server room on persistent phone problems and another person is in the Birch Conference room addressing the final configuration of the multimedia there. The phone people and the multimedia guy will be back tomorrow, to be sure...the phones are still not right and there are still two conference rooms to work through.

I hope your day at work was much calmer and more relaxed than mine, although I really cannot complain...even in all the rush and push for help, users were kind, grateful and gracious....did I tell you what a great place this is to work?

Anyway...that's it for now...till later, much love to you...


Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day, 2007

New space, main foyerToday was an important day for me and mine for multiple was officially the last event the young one will participate in as a student at Sylvania Northview High was the first event to take place within the proximity of the new home of the company that I work for (the parade proceeded directly in front of the building) and being Memorial Day, it was a sobering reminder that I have two sons who are of the age that should the awful mess in the Middle East come to the point of requiring a draft, my sons would qualify.

I never, ever talk about this with the boys, but this really scares me...even the insinuation of a possibility that the draft may be reinstituted sends me into a horrible panic and an irrational thought process which centers around living off nuts and berries in the backwoods of some god-foresaken place where noone will ever find us. I cannot imagine the torture that mothers all over the US are going through right now...their sons and daughters who choose to serve surely make them proud with their commitment to our country, but either I am a selfish mother or they are terror stricken and horribly tormented every waking and sleeping hour, knowing the danger their children are in.

Walking around in the cemetery, looking at the sea of flags in the veteran's section and the spotty placement of flags throughout, seeing the living veterans from all the recent wars who were there to acknowledge the current and past sacrifices that men and women have made...will it ever stop? Will the young people of some generation in the future actually be able to grow to adulthood fully intact, without the loss of classmates, friends and loved ones lost in the cause of some war? I hope so...I pray so...

Much love to you


Sunday, May 27, 2007

The greatest gift I never wanted...

New space, main foyerLast fall, I experienced one of the most traumatic things I have experienced...after nearly ten years, I was forced to leave the job that I felt in my heart I was made to was not something that I wanted or was prepared for and it made me heartsick to know that after all of myself that I had invested in this organization and this position, I was not wanted there any longer. Little did I know that at that moment of what seemed to be my greatest grief, I was actually being given the most rewarding and wonderful opportunity of my life.

In my search for a new place to add value, I was connected through several friends to the organization I now work for. It has been six months since I began my service there, and they have been the most challenging and exciting days I have spent in a long time. I have grown to feel connected to the people I work with in such a profoundly loyal way...I have observed them all in work and at play...enjoying each and every one of them for the talented and diverse group that they are. The creative nature of our business encourages personal growth and a true feeling of cohesiveness in our organization...we all have a common goal, which is to be passionate and to work with dedication that comes from having passion about what you do.

When I first came into the company, I thought our location was the coolest place that I have ever been able to work in, conducive to the creative process and nurturing in its attention to the comforts of the staff. After several months there, I found that we were going to move to a newer, better space....I was skeptical...but the intention was to provide a place where the clients who come to visit would be able to enjoy the complete experience of our organization, observing our creative processes and our eclectic spaces, while also having all the amenities available to provide for a comfortable and complete business visit as well.

Plans were excruciating in their detail, and a long time in process...many people throughout the organization were engaged to assist in creating detailed plans of action to address all the details of a very complicated move. Months of preparation and cooperation were required from everyone in the company, to assure that when the space was ready for occupancy, we were all ready to move without a hitch.

That moving week began last Monday and culminated in a final move of furniture to the new space on Friday. Starting Wednesday night, technology move strategies were coordinated by my two supervisors, with the rest of IT assisting as directed. My bosses dedicated several very long days and nights to getting our equipment moved, installed and configured in the new space, and then the extensive testing plan was executed. All of the core group of move staff worked at any task asked of them with diligence...again, the concept of working with a common goal in make this new space ready for clients and colleagues....our new home...official on Tuesday May 29.

As I walked around the space this weekend, executing my assigned tasks, I simply had to pinch myself.....this really IS the most extraordinary work space I have ever seen....and I REALLY WORK HERE!!! I am so very fortunate, and I know it...more than ever, I believe that everything happens for a reason, although the immediate one is not always clear....the gift I was given last fall was so much more than I could have ever anticipated...I have gained so much...lost little...and am grateful and growing every day...

I hope that anyone who can will keep checking the webpage for my company Root Learning and keep an eye out for the notices about the public open house to introduce our staff and company to the people of the area we have moved into...I would love to have you come to see this wonderful place and allow me to give you the grand tour....

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend...til later...much love to you...


Friday, May 25, 2007

Young Folks....

tekkbabe859If i told you things i did before
told you how i used to be
would you go along with someone like me
if you knew my story word for word
had all of my history
would you go along with someone like me

i did before and had my share
it didn't lead nowhere
i would go along with someone like you
it doesn't matter what you did
who you were hanging with
we could stick around and see this night through

and we don't care about the young folks
talkin' 'bout the young style
and we don't care about the old folks
talkin' 'bout the old style too
and we don't care about their own faults
talkin' 'bout our own style
all we care 'bout is talking
talking only me and you

usually when things has gone this far
people tend to disappear
no one will surprise me unless you do

i can tell there's something goin' on
hours seems to disappear
everyone is leaving i'm still with you

it doesn't matter what we do
where we are going too
we can stick around and see this night through

and we don't care about the young folks
talkin' 'bout the young style
and we don't care about the old folks
talkin' 'bout the old style too
and we don't care about their own faults
talkin' 'bout our own style
all we care 'bout is talking
talking only me and you

and we don't care about the young folks
talkin' 'bout the young style
and we don't care about the old folks
talkin' 'bout the old style too
and we don't care about their own faults
talkin' 'bout our own style
all we care 'bout is talking
talking only me and you
talking only me and you

talking only me and you
talking only me and you

- "Young Folks", Peter, Bjorn and John

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

And so it begins....

The box move has really begun...Yesterday, the official move activities began for the staff at the office I work in. There has been a lot of "pre-work", and there have been many, many hours dedicated by a team of very competent and caring individuals to get us to this point. A very detailed plan is in place to assist in the move process and to take the guess work out of it all for the singular staff members...their responsibilities have mainly been to assure that their workspaces are packed in boxes assigned to them and their cubes in the new space, to get rid of the stuff that they really do not use or need to move, and to assure that they make contingency plans to either work or take time off during the time that the IT infrastructure for our company is in transition, during the physical move for us.

Today will be another day of packing and pitching, even though the "pitching" part has been going on for several it has come to the time to "put up or shut up" on the physical carrying stuff out of the building, folks are starting to reassess what is truly important and what they can do without (there is something to be said for laziness, and the fact that if it does not fit in their assigned boxes that they are responsible for moving it themselves). My boss has been rushing about coordinating a huge amount of technology installations in the new space, and his responsibilities on the next bit of IT stuff (final back up and physical move of infrastructure) looms humongous on the horizon. The company is very fortunate to have him in the position at this time in their IT life....he is very intense and conscientious about his job and responsibilities...I have complete confidence in the fact that as long as he is on the tasks, the transfer of data and equipment will proceed without a hitch.

I will post more as is appropriate. Needless to say, once the move is complete (plans are to begin business as usual in the new space on Tuesday, May 29), I will post information here about the public open house, to afford anyone who is interested the opportunity to view this beautiful new facility and experience the people, so you can truly understand why this is the best place at which I have ever had the privilege to work.

Keep us in your good thoughts this week, as we will all be extraordinarily busy...the rewards, however will be monumental...

Much love to you...



On a totally unrelated a call from a friend yesterday...seems that some folks are a little less than bright when it comes to keeping their opinions to themselves...all I have to say on the subject is, first off, you may want to keep a low profile when you are not on your home court, and secondly, unless you are ready to put up, with most folks, you are better off to just SHUT UP, IMHO.

And finally, the "Quote of the Day"

"The more you judge, the less you love."

- Honore de Balzac

Sunday, May 20, 2007

"Action and reaction....

Ebb and flow..."......ebb and flow, trial and error, change - this is the rhythm of living. Out of our over-confidence, fear; out of our fear, clearer vision, fresh hope. And out of hope, progress."

- Bruce Barton

Friday, May 18, 2007

How addicted do you have to be to dig coffee beans out of poo?

Cat Poo CoffeeCame across an article at Reuters online the other day (Aussies go crazy for cat poo coffee) about the coffee phenomenon known as “Kopi Luwak”. This very unusual beverage mutant is the product of coffee beans that have passed through the digestive tract of the “civet cat”, which are then recovered, cleaned and coffee brewed from them. Supposedly the process of digestion does something to the beans that makes the coffee brewed from them much different in character (imagine that) with a much smoother and less bitter flavour (Coffee FAQs).

My question to you is this….How did ANYONE come up with the idea to fish the beans out of the poo to brew them into coffee in the first place? Was there some sort of coffee bean shortage, or did the civet cats eat all the coffee fruits before the beans could be harvested that year? And honestly, I know true coffee addicts will get a little crazy without their daily dosage, but really…..could even they get past the facts of its origins ….. and….is coffee made from cat poo coffee beans really worth $300 a pound?

This is definitely not for me, even if it was given as a gift….the only way I would ever try it is if I were tricked into any case, that is my frivolous post for today….much love to you…have a great weekend…