Peaches Prattlings











{June 23, 2016}   Keeping their attention

As a Software Trainer,  you’re also a bit of an entertainer.

I know you’re probably thinking sitting in a classfor 6.5 hours can be exhausting. Think about being in front of that class for 6.5 hours a day! I totally get the rump falling asleep,  having trouble concentrating, but I have to look at you drooping, getting sleepy and yawning. Hmmm..how much fun is that for me? Big Fat zilch.

That being said, I need to keep your interest, keep you awake and paying attention, all while trying to help you learn something new.

That being said,  I have to be creative. In make them laugh,  sometimes I bring humor into the class, real world experience. When they start yawning in the afternoon, I implement a 7th inning stretch! I make the class get up and sing! Take Me Out to The Ball Game, I’m a Little Teapot, The Itsy Bitsy Spider. It’s awesome!

Today, during a lesson, at the end of a step…”If You’re Happy and You Know It”, that cracked me up! I threatened them with the Hokey Pokey tomorrow!

If we’re going to be together all day and maybe one to four days,  gotta keep it moving.  Come and check it out for yourself! I’ll save you a seat.

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They said more snow and they were right.  Pook.

I went to sleep and the snow was mostly melted and I woke up to…you guessed it…more snow! And at 10pm it’s still snowing. There have been a lot of memes about Mother Nature being bipolar and off her needs, sounds about right, right? Hmmm…what does tomorrow hold?

I think I’ve told you I’m ripping my movie collection and it’s been great,  remembering my babies and ice been watching them here and there, a nice break from Netflix. As I rip,  I want to watch everything!

Then, I got a phone call, the kind that I love! -“Hi Auntie J!”
-Hi MGS!
– “Guess what! I lost my tooth!”
-Awesome!
-“Thank you for my tooth fairy pillow! I really like it!”
– I’m so glad,  I loved making it.
-“When we go on vacation, will you bring things to teach me to sew?”
-I would love that! I’ll definitely bring sewing supplies with me.
-“Ok, I’m turning you back to mommy, bye”
-Bye, I love you
-I love you too
End of conversation.

Now I sit here, ripping and watching movies, cross stitching and loving on the furry beasts. Sounds good,  who wants to join me?

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{December 29, 2015}   Another masterpiece!

Last night, CKM and I participated in one of our time honored traditions…painting class!

This time we chose Painting With a Twist. We weren’t crazy about the instructor and they’re was no down time to let the paint dry so it didn’t all run together,  but we managed.  In glad it wasn’t our first time,  it may have been our last!

It’s almost like paint by numbers,  just no numbers.  The instructor gives you direction on each section, which is very helpful.  I kept waiting for Bob Rossi…”now we’ll paint a tree,  a happy tree”!

All in all,  a great finished product, we realized this was our forth or fifth time. Can you guess which is mine? (See what the street names are?)

I gave mine to PSM tonight when I got home, something he can put up in the new place, only snow he’ll see there!

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{October 6, 2015}   A dining masterpiece!

First…I’m back in Buffalo on my next project. 

Technically,  this is the next wave of the project in Buffalo and I am back on it! I really like the team I’m working with and I met some new people, love it!

Tonight, we are staying in Niagara Falls and we’ve to a restaurant,  AG Cuisine, absolutely fabukous! It started out with a hard boiled quails egg.

Someone had soup, the one pictured was very cool, it had actual popcorn in the dish. My salad was very thin veggies, lettuce and baby carrots.

The main dishes were fantastic! Beautiful, good ingredients, fresh,  some farm to table. It was a little tricky for me,  as you can imagine,  or tricky for the kitchen!

But they came through!  A fabulous vegetable plate,  how fabulously lucky I know I am!  I got to play with the big Kids.

What’s next?

http://www.agcuisine.com/

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You have a business, built on customer service,  right?

So why wouldn’t you call me back? How many times should I call and leave a voice mail before I give up?

I want to do business with you, do you want to do business with me?

I guess not…moving on.

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{August 6, 2015}   1000 Posts – OMG!!!

I have written 1000 posts! Can you believe it!

It’s amazing! I have done one thing 1000 times! And you’ve been reading it all along! Wow!

They say it takes 21 days to form a habit, and baby, it’s a hard habit to break! I mean it! When I decided January 6, 2013 that I was going to blog every day, I was really hoping I would keep that promise to myself. When I started my blog in 2009, it was just a way for me to express myself, a little bit of therapy, but then in 2013, it was something different and became something more.

Then it was one day, then two, then twenty one, then all of a sudden, it’s one hundred, then two and now it’s ONE THOUSAND! Who knew I could do it! Well, I’m sure my dad would say he did, thanks daddy!

There have been a few days I was too tired, so my posts might say “I’m sorry, I’m too tired, but here’s your post”! I’ve woken up in the middle of the night realizing “Oh No! I didn’t blog!” And proceed to write a post. Then there are other days I’m so sorry I have fallen asleep in the middle of blogging, wake up and finish. Then there have been 3 times [i am pretty sure it’s only been 3] that I have fallen asleep or forgotten altogether, mostly fallen asleep and missed it, but I’m pleased to say only 3 times! That;s not too shabby.

My friends and family have fallen under it’s spell and follow my blog every day and you know you’re in that group, thank you!

I can’t always think of what to write, I know you find that impossible to believe, but some of my posts that come very late at night, that’s because I can’t always think of something, but on the other hand, I blog late because that’s when I started and it feels wrong to blog before the sun goes down or 10pm. There’s that 21 days to form a habit thing again.

August 4, 2015, I had 1000 posts, go me! And go you for reading it. There is a part of me that thinks if you weren’t reading it I would still write, because, after all, it started out just for me, but on the other hand, well, who are we kidding, I’d keep writing, I like it and I like thinking of new and goofy things to talk about.

Wow, 1000 posts, here’s to the next 1000, stick around, it’s bound to be a fun ride!

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Tee hee hee, if you didn’t know, A2 is how people from Ann Arbor refer to it and since I’ve been there for a few months and will be there a while longer, I’m jumping on the bandwagon!

Today I was awakened way too early, 7:30am, by some texted pictures, not naming names, very happy to have them, but too early and my fault that I didn’t have the phone on silent. But…it was a good thing and I’ll tell you why soon.

I stretched and tried to go back to sleep but we both know me and that wasn’t happening, so I got up, showered, dressed, started packing, had some breakfast, chatted with Ernest, the nice gentleman that works the breakfast area at the hotel, saw pictures of his grandkids, talked about Father’s Day, back to the room to finish packing and headed out.

I dropped my bags at bag storage, headed out, took a right and began walking down South Michigan Avenue. The past three days, I had been staying primarily on North Michigan Avenue and South Michigan Avenue has so much to offer. Good thing I’m going to come back some time, more exploring!

It was about a mile and a half from the hotel to Shedd Aquarium. Someone told me I needed to be there by about 9:30am or the line would be ridiculous and when I left about 2:15, the line for tickets was probably about a 1.5-2 hours wait, no thanks!

The website said the best days to go, Wednesday and Thursday, well, now it know why. Teenagers and wee tots, class and camp trips and there were a lot of them, not to mention families, good thing crowds don’t bother me much.

When I talked to people from Chicago, they said that so many class trips every year were to Shedd Aquarium and The Field Museum of Natural History and Adler Planetarium. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Museum_Campus

For my entry fee, I got entrance into the aquarium and all the sections including Oceanarium, Wild Reef, Jellies, Stingray Touch Experience, Aquatic Show and Sea Monsters, oh my!

I got to see the different sections including Caribbean Reef, River, Ocean, all great with frogs, snakes, fish, spiders, you name it, they had it. The Jellies were amazing, such beautiful creatures that can be so deadly. I got to pet stingrays, so soft and sleek, watch the aquatic show with dolphins, seals, a dog and some beluga whales, fascinating and touching, hang with some penguins and watch a 4D movie about sea monsters. That was fun! You sit in the seat and watch things come at you, get sprayed with mist and feel things touch your back, the audience reaction is the best.

I really enjoyed myself and could see myself possibly going back again, if I had people with me. I saw some beautiful creatures that I might never see on my own and learned a lot about them and how I could help, how we could all help.

I hope you enjoy some of my pictures.

http://www.sheddaquarium.org

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{December 20, 2013}   The birth of a sock monkey

I don’t know if you know that I am a “crafter”: I cross stitch, needlepoint, knit, crochet, stamp, paint, you name it, I’ve probably tried it. I love making things and giving them away and one of these days I’m going to show you some of the cross stitches I have made in the last year.

Right now, I want to talk about the sock monkey I made for my little monkey, Miss A. Her mom calls her monkey and pickle and I found this Christmas Sock Monkey kit, so you know I had to get it and make it. I’ve always wanted to make a sock monkey and here he is. [And I know that her mom is so crazy busy getting ready for Christmas, her parents visiting, that she’s probably not going to see this post – so, no telling! They’ll both get to see it on Christmas!]

This sock monkey’s name is Rudy.

So…you start with two socks that have the red heel trimmed in white, so you can use one for the body and one for the other parts. You take the first sock and cut the bottom to make legs and then sew and stuff the entire thing.

Next, stuff the to the top, sew the legs, stuffing as you go.

Stuffed! We have legs!

Stuffed! We have legs!

Tie off the top to make the head, cut material from the other sock, sew, stuff and add the tail to the body.

We have a head and tail!

We have a head and tail!

Next, from the other sock, we cut out the fabric for the mouth, ears and arms. Now s/he has a smile, makes a difference! I have to tell you, the monkey was a little creepy without eyes, but we’re good now! S/he even has eyelashes! Can you see the antlers???

Arms, ears, mouth, eyes

Arms, ears, mouth, eyes

Rudy needs clothes, we’re getting there!

Red...my favorite color!

Red…my favorite color!

We have to decorate the adorable red shirt [no Star Trek references, please!] “I Believe”, do you? Add some holly leaves and red buttons for umpf.

Do you believe?

Do you believe?

And Rudy is done! S/he came with an Adoption Decree  “To whom it may concern: Be it hereby known, near and far, that the person named below has agreed to be the adopted guardian of a precious wee sock monkey, and to love, cherish, and cuddle this monkey forevermore.” There is a place for her to name her “Beloved Monkey”, “Devoted Guardian” that would be Miss A, “Kindly Maker”, her Auntie G, that’s me! and the “Date of Adoption”. Is that terrific or what?

Hello Rudy!

Hello Rudy!

So…in conclusion here is Rudy with the original kit packaging.

The original packaging and the finished product

The original packaging and the finished product

Think Miss A will love it? I hope so!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



I think I have told you that I have been a writer for a long time, didn’t always enjoy it, but apparently, I’m a good story teller. The following is a paper I wrote comparing The Wizard of Oz to The Odyssey in my World Literature Class: July 16, 1997. This is a total brag..I got an A. I tried to recreate the magic at least one other time, comparing a classic and something modern, it failed miserably! But I tried. I hope you enjoy it.

An epic is a journey : one that transcends time – it could be Odysseus’ journey home from Troy to Ithaca as told by Homer, or Dorothy’s journey home from Oz to Kansas in the Wizard of Oz. Each hero and heroine must travel a path that would lead them home: for Odysseus it is the seas around the islands and for Dorothy it is the yellow brick road which will lead her straight to The Wizard.

As we join Odysseus, the Trojan war has ended and Odysseus is on his way back home to Ithaca: his ships are hit by a storm raised by Athena and blown to Thrace. Dorothy, and her own epic is returning home after running away when a tornado hits the farm she lives on and subsequently takes her house up into the eye of twister and lands in the Munchkin City. This is the first component of a journey: encountering a new world.

In Thrace, Odysseus sacks the city of Cicones, saving a priest of Apollo, for which he is rewarded with skin of potent wine . When Dorothy landed munchkin city her  house lands on the Wicked Witch of the East. She is rewarded for saving the Munchkins in their city, not with potent libations, but with a pair of ruby slippers containing their own magic powers.

The killing of the Wicked Witch of the East angered the Wicked Witch of the West, her sister, much in the same way Odysseus angered Poseidon, god of the seas, for harming his son Polyphemus.

Thus far, we have encountered elements of a journey that make up an epic: beginning a journey in a new world; for Odysseus: Thrace. Dorothy: the Munchkin City. We also encountered mythical and supernatural elements such as gods and goddesses, as in Athena and Poseidon; witches, the likes of Glenda and the Wicked Witch of the West.

As we continue on our journey, Odysseus and his crew are blown by storms to Libya and the Land of the Lotus Eeaters. There, an exploring party accepts from the natives, the Lotus fruit which forces them to lose their memory and they must be awakened by a Odysseys. Similarly Donnatina friends are almost Emerald City when the Wicked Witch of the West puts a spell on a field of poppies, causing them to get sleepy,  make it seem as if they will never reach the Emerald City, the Wizard or the answers that they seek.

Odysseus and Dorothy are both quite homesick, but both know there is more to do before they can find the answers they seek to reach home. Circe, the sorceress, tells Odysseys he must go down to Hades to consult Tierses, the seer about appeasing Poseidon and returning home. Although it is not something that he truly wishes to do, it is his fate that he should go, where no man has gone and returned. The Great Wizard tells Dorothy she must go to the castle of the Wicked Witch of the West and bring her broomstick back to him to get the answers and favors she and her companions seek.

Throughout their respective stories, Odysseus and Dorothy both have interactions with an interesting array of individuals. Characters in Dorothy’s life in Kansas take shape along the journey as other characters just as the gods would take the shape of others known to Odysseus along his journey.

The first of these characters involved in a Odysseus’ journey is a goddess who is in his corner helping, influencing and encouraging Odysseus to return home and never give up. This goddess is Pallas Athena, goddess of wisdom; Dorothy has Glinda, the Good Witch of the North and encourage her to find her way home and not give up.

Another person involved in Odysseus’s adventure is Poseidon, the Lord of the Seas. He’s a wrathful god who could destroy a city with the change of his moods. Unfortunately for Odysseus, Poseidon holds a grudge for what has happened to Polyphemus. He makes Odysseus’ journey a long a difficult one and only after 20 years and great help from other gods, does he allow Odysseus to return home.

As for Dorothy, her Poseidon is the wicked witch of the West. She is all that evil can be and she makes Dorothy’s journey along a difficult one, as well as trying to inflict great harm her way. She holds a grudge, like Poseidon, for killing her sister. When the Wicked Witch is accidentally melted by Dorothy trying to save the Scarecrow, she unwittingly helps Dorothy to get home by following the Wizard’s instructions to bring him her broomstick.

The mentor is a faithful friend to Odysseus – loyal, sober and wise. He is the mirror image of the Scarecrow, the first of Dorothy’s companions on her journey. Although he claims not to have a brain, until he is given a Th.D. [Doctor of Thinkology] by the Wizard the Scarecrow is wise and quite intelligent, getting the foursome out of many uncomfortable situations.

Euryleia is the faithful and devoted nurse to Odysseus, protects and love him unconditionally, while the Tin Man is faithful, devoted and protective of Dorothy, seeing that she gets home while you’re Eurycleia waits at home for Odysseus.

Dorothy meets one final ally in the Cowardly Lion: afraid of his own shadow, pretending to be brave and towards the end of their journey, showing courage and steadfastness – the traits of a king. This characters is not unlike Telemachus, Odysseus’ son, self-conscious about himself and his duty, trying to live up to his father’s image and at the end of Odysseus’ story, shows courage and steadfastness traits of his father, a king.

As Dorothy and her crew are about to enter into the Emerald City, there is singing: voices telling them they are out of the dark, out of the woods and into the light, almost to freedom. This is similar to the muses at the beginning of Odysseus’ story, to tell through song, what is happening.

There are monsters and magic as well as supernatural beings encountered along the way; Poseidon has his sea nymphs and see monsters at his beck and call and the Wicked Witch of the West has her palace guards and flying monkeys to do her bidding.

As I mentioned  Polyphemus earlier, he was son to Poseidon and a cyclops, a race of monsters with one eye the middle of their faces. Odysseus and his party feasted on his food and anger  Polyphemus and ultimately tricked him. While he was sleeping Odysseus poked out his eye with a large sharpened stick. He and his crew then escaped Polyphemus by cleverly talking his way out of the situation. This was not far from Dorothy’s tale in the forest when she and her party came upon some apple trees. As they began picking apples from the branches, the trees, under a spell from the Wicked Witch, became animated and proceeded to berate the hungry party verbally, while throwing apples at them as well. The Scarecrow thought of a way out of the situation by insulting the trees, to get more apples and as an opportunity to escape. It seems, no matter what time period you are in you, can talk you’re way out of so many things.

Much the way Odysseus might pray to Zeus, the god of gods and goddesses the dispenser justice, at Olympus, in a temple or wherever he was at the time Dorothy and her companions have ventured to the Emerald City to ask favor of the great Wizard of Oz, all-powerful and all-knowing.

Odysseus and Dorothy both find that they have answers within themselves. Odysseus knows he is an adventurer, but there’s still duty at home with his family and country. Dorothy realizes that she is a dreamer; and to find happiness you only need to look within your own self.

Finally I pose this question: was L. Frank Baum inspired by Homer and the Odyssey to create the Wizard of Oz, or is the epic is the common toll from which authors draft their inspiration?



{October 8, 2013}   Another stellar Girl Night Out!

Tonight we had another great GNO! It was quite creative!

We went to Mudslinger Pottery, http://www.mudslingerspottery.com/, in Louiseville, CO, about 10 minutes from us and a WAY cute town! Lots of shops, restaurants, pubs, actual tree lined streets, it was charming! I found out that Louiseville was named the number 2 safest city in the country! I can see why. http://www.louisvilleco.gov/

We started with a lecture that lasted about 40 minutes, we learned about the four S’ s [scoring, smoothing, something and something], then we learned about throwing clay, the wheel, sponging, making sure clay is centered. We would ‘leave’ with having potentially made 3 items [we left them there to be ‘bisqued” so we could come back and paint them – you know when you go to a paint your own pottery? Those are bisque so that you can paint them].  We will go back next month to paint.

We took our ball of clay and worked the clay into a cup of sorts, get the feel for sides [by putting your thumb through the center and working out], I made mine more into a petaled cup, I liked it. Then we worked on the wheel, I had serious issues for 2 balls of clay, bad when they go flying and the guard goes flying too! Third time’s the charm! I scored the bowl on the inside, way cool!

Then…i decided to make something on the tableetop, i cut out pieces, using the rolling pin, scoring, smoothing, and imprinted this cool flower stamp on the base and the back, I was inspired! I then put 9 holes in it, MG’s menorah!!! I can’t wait to paint it and give it to her! [For EJ, I made her a bunch of animals out of fimo] It’s going to be fun!

We had a great time, I had clay all over my face, we had Ghost moments, clay everywhere, good food and lots of laughs and some great pictures, you should join us next time! [not telling you what we’re doing, you’ll have to tune in]



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