FTY: Tests? We don’t like tests!

June 27, 2014

Current Reading and commentary:

  1. A Peoples History of the US: Ch11- Robber Barrons and Rebels——>So many parallels to The Pitchforks Are Coming….For Us Plutocrats. The man who writes that article is very smart to realize we have been here before and blood was spilled. I would really like to know how much. I think I might go through Mr. Zinn’s Ch11 and record a body count and dates, because I want to know how many died so my family could have the weekend, the 8 hour day, and the minimum wage. Agitation with A Smile 🙂
  2. Hands on the Freedom Plow- My sub-title: Revolutionary women who lead the civil rights movement and their stories.
  3. GRE Exam Math Workbook- a few of my answers have been thrown off by ONE digit—-and no point/ cookie for me–even though I got the process right!!!!!!!! Fairness does not exist.
  4. Grammar for College Writing: I’ts like 8th grade english plus, all over again—– without the sentence diagramming.
  5. A Workbook for Argument: A Complete Course in Critical Thinking–I’m working on my writing so I can write a killer op-ed.



FTY: To Stephanie Lormand (and of course The Labor Movement) An unlikely pair to be so close together



🙂 My dear friend Stephanie Lormand had a wonderful op-ed in the News and Observer this week you can find a link to it in this blog post called Are School Aged Kids Tested More Often than Toxic Chemicals. Her op-ed was very inspiring to me. I hope one day I can write an op-ed about an issue I am passionate about.


FTY: The Lady With The New Deal

June 15, 2012

I need to make a mental note that yesterday and today were challenging to say the least. Good, yet challenging. I got to see a wonderful friend two days in a row. And I didn’t have to deal with a hot mess of crazy woman “you two were hanging out but didn’t invite me”.

Random Question: Why is it the women I hang out with tend to be dude-like? Oh, right it must be the increased and joyous participation in spontaneity <–thank you spell check> “disorder” that I have.

So, I’m on page 142 of the book from last Friday’s post <The Woman Behind the New Deal>. I took over a page of notes on the beginning, which gives you the scenario of what society looked like/ felt like prior to the New Deal. And, Lemme tell you, it was very different than now. < I probably use then/ than incorrectly > <Perhaps this points to a learning disability rather than white trashiness! >

This quote shocked me….


“The eight hour day was a standard plank of the Socialist Party; unemployment insurance seemed laughably improbable; direct aid to the unemployed would threaten his campaign pledge of a balanced budget. He said he would back her.”

chaotic note

But Really what the heck is up with this?

FTY: Rachel Carson

April 22, 2011

I had never heard of Rachel Carson until I was at the NCRA convention. The interactive read aloud seminar contained excerpts of a book about Rachel Carson.

I am not surprised that I’ve never heard of heard of her. As an American woman I know I am woefully ignorant of women in history.

From PBS Bill Moyers Journal. A conversation with Rachel Carson  part 1.

I love the title “A Sense of Wonder”. Working with young children and seeing their sense of wonder in discovering things that are now mundane to me is what keeps me coming back to helping kids. That last moment where those neurons connect for the very first time electrifies me.

chaotic note

Sites I like:

Silent Spring Institute

You can take the self-compassion quiz/ scale yourself. My scores were uh, revealing to say the least. I’ll share mine later if there are others willing to share as well.

FTY: The Worst Mother, Tim Wise, and Daisy

April 16, 2011

From The Worst Mother

I’ve been playing with making a few of my own versions of Rules for Moms…this might take me a while so stay tuned

I just finished reading White Like Me by Tim Wise. It was a fascinating and eye opening book. Funny that I’ve just finished this and Daisy has a post up at Womanist Musings called “What Can White Women Do?“. <Which I am grappling with right now in my work with MomsRising and also have been inadvertently involved with as a “white teacher” in Northern and Southern public schools.>

Something Tim Wise said on p. 149 of White Like Me <WLM> I think applies to what Daisy is trying to do over at Womanist Musings. Here’s his quote…

The goal of the larger antiracism movement must be to get enough white allies to join with persons of color so as to launch meaningful and repeated challenges to the vestiges of institutional racism that still litter the landscape of the American polity and economy.

I think its tricky to join with persons of color because our privilege does get in the way. And some of the reactions to Daisy’s post are good examples.

In the end we have got to let go of the outcome, which makes us more effective and healthier. <paraphrasing WLM p.154>

NCRA Conference Highlights

April 6, 2011

The sessions at NCRA with the children’s book authors really took the cake for me.  I bought a Skippy Jon Jones puppet to take home with me.

Lester Laminack’s speech was delivered after play-acting of The Wizard of Oz.

[Delivered first in May 2008]
<–click on this link for the whole speech and scroll down until you see the title

I dream of schools where children know they are cherished and trusted, where they feel safe to risk being wrong in order to learn lessons more important than arriving at the right answer

Will you join me? Will you stand up for the children of this nation? Will you take a stand on the issues that matter most to the preservation of their one, precious childhood.

I came home feeling like there was a message that he couldn’t say, yet he did so well with re-telling The Wizard of Oz. I did some searching and there seems to be layers of meaning to the famous story, as with all stories I suppose. At this point I am not sure what the author meant by writing it.

Mike Artell was also a featured speaker. I regret now I didn’t go to his seminar on how to draw stick figures for teachers. I suppose I can always request his books from the library. He’s also got a music cd out: Calling All Children to the Mardi Gras

I also heard Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer speak. And bonus Paul Brewer talked about having ADD. 🙂 And Kathleen just one a huge award from the Children’s Book Guild of D.C.

He and Kathleen just published Fartiste…..

I tell you, we are here on Earth to fart around,
and don’t let anybody tell you different.

Kurt Vonnegut
One day a baker with butter and yeast,

And the next—voila! –he was JOE, the Fartiste.
The Fartiste doesn’t sing, he doesn’t dance, and he doesn’t act. But that doesn’t stop him from taking the stage at Paris’s famed Moulin Rouge, where he performs his much-loved act for celebrities and royalty with the funniest talent of all – Joe is the man who has perfected the art of the fart. Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer bring new wind to their mostly true story about “the man who made his pants dance,” which is perfectly matched with Boris Kulikov’s explosive art.

FTY: Protest Songs and Introducing Che Dad Picks

February 25, 2011

Introducing Che Dad Picks.

Che Dad is my dad of course and occasionally he and I like the same movies and  books. These picks  will be those books and movies!

Yesterday I got

JFK: The CIA, Vietnam, and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy

in the mail and I am having a hard time putting it down. The author is ….”

(From Publishers Weekly)

Prouty, who was a Washington insider for nearly 20 years–in the last few of them as Chief of Special Operations for the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Kennedy–has a highly unusual perspective to offer on the assassination and the events that led up to it. Familiar to moviegoers as the original of the anonymous Washington figure, played by Donald Sutherland in the Oliver Stone’s movie JFK , who asks hero Jim Garrison to ponder why Kennedy was killed.”

Matters of the Heart-Mind

January 16, 2011

Thanks Freda for posting a link to this pic on facebook.

The advocacy training I went to today was sponsored by ncpirg. It was good information on gathering support in the non-profit world.  I think it shed some light on what things I like to do and am good at vs. what I do not want to get involved in. I met some people involved with great organizations. I can’t remember them all but here’s a few.


Democracy NC

I’m reading When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron and she explores the concept of being beyond hope or fear. I’m having a hard time with it. Also reading the prequels to The Mists of Avalon.

Things I want to do in the New Year:

donate to WWF- possibly a group donation

sponsor and attend NCWU’s wake county agenda assembly meeting

see my “big sister”

eat less meat

write like a muthertrucker

try new way of organizing my writings- not many notebooks but one per year with table of contents

get subscription to yoga journal and do yoga daily even if it is for 5-10 minutes

communicate better in all my relationships

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