Saturday, November 20, 2010
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
A reflection on 26:
November - celebrated 26 years in Burley, Idaho with my family, and Thanksgiving on the ranch in Arizona.
December - February - The great job hunt - two trips out to D.C. and one to NYC. Surviving the great blizzards of December and February in DC with Victor.
March - "Spring break" with the wonderful JCI ladies in Houston. Job interviews like crazy.
April - finding direction in what I wanted in my job.. four job offers, big decisions and a cross-country move that included a wonderful stop at the ranch.
May - Starting my new job/life in Connecticut, Hole in the Wall Gang Camp training, big personal upheavals.
June - Vietnam to witness the magic of Camp Colors of Love
July/August - Dominican Republic and learning from challenge. Quick trip to the ranch with the family.
September - Back to New Haven to discover what my new life in the USA would be.
October - My little brother got married! Sun Valley Idaho for one of the most incredible weeks ever.
November - trip to South Africa for our amazing Network Meeting, (and to see Estelle!) and a planning visit to Tobati, Paraguay.
November 17th, 2010 - New Haven Connecticut, dinner party with my newly formed circle of wonderful friends and pizza delivered by mom and dad, per tradition.
26 was dynamic. Both hard and beautiful. I learned a LOT about.. a lot.
Bring it on 27!
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
This is the school where I used to teach and is one of the places VERY closest to my heart.
I am so, so excited for the exposure this will bring these amazing schools:
YES Prep Public Schools will be featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show on Monday, September 20. This is Oprah’s farewell season and we are honored to be a part of it! Oprah will discuss the urban public education crisis in our nation and highlight YES Prep Public Schools as a model public school system. Other guests include Waiting for Superman movie director, Davis Guggenheim, Bill Gates, Michelle Rhee and John Legend, who wrote the theme song for Waiting for Superman.
Of the teammates from YES Prep that were in attendance at the filming of the show include Founder and CEO Chris Barbic who is a 1992 Teach For America Houston Alumnus, Director of Communications Jill Willis, YES Prep teacher, yBlazer Studios Founder and George Lucas Foundation Board member Craig Brandenburg and finally, YES Prep Principal and Alum Melanie Singleton.
Oprah's producers first discovered YES Prep when Secretary of Education Arne Duncan was the keynote speaker at our annual Senior Signing Day ceremony that honors our graduating seniors.
Will you tune in or record the show and watch YES Prep have a national spotlight shined on our success?(Reposted from YES Prep on the Oprah Winfrey show! | The Answer | YES Prep Public Schools)
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
I learned this word today on our drive to visit the site where we will be holding training next week. It was a hot and sticky ride. Up until today it has been raining, which though semi-depressing and soggy, also has meant that it has stayed pleasantly cool. Today, not so much. Its about a 45 minute drive to the training site from La Romana, where we are staying now. Myself and my three gringo colleagues piled into the back seat of our camp director's sister's car for the ride over. We used the "one butt cheek on the seat and one on the lap of the person next to you" method, and within about 2 minutes we were so sweaty that we were sticking together and anytime anyone moved an arm or a leg it was like pulling velcro apart.
This heat also didn't do anything for my stinky-licious chaco sandals. These things continue reek with a force that I never thought was possible. Our camp director (who is now one of my new favorite people - fiesty, spunky, about 4 foot 9 but enough personality to fill a football team) told me that I should hang my feet out of the window while we were driving. It gets worse every day, which isn't the best news considering that they are the only shoes that I brought for the next three weeks other than a pair of shower flip flops.
Anyway, while we were driving (and sweating, and smelling bad), a woman crossed the street right in front of us and came about 2 inches from getting plowed over by a motorcycle. We all gasped and then watched as she proceeded to attempt to push the motorcyclist off of his bike. He wobbled, but continued on. This in and of itself struck us all as amusing, but really what was funny was that she had a very thick... bigote. Let's just say that women don't usually have bigotes, at least not like this one. This lady had a bigote that rivaled Groucho Marx or Sonny Bono (in the hayday). I mean, we are not talking a few little stray hairs - we are talking a full fledged legitimate mustache.
As our camp director said: a very STRONG bigote.
.......Maybe you had to be there.
It was funny, trust me. The strong bigote had us in fits of sticky hot laughter that got us through a good chunk of the drive to the training site.
Time for cold shower and bed.
Miss you loved ones.
PS - Magic soap update: I brushed my teeth with it last night and this morning - and it wasn't bad! It didn't even taste that bad. It did foam like crazy - to the point where it looked like I had a small beard of foam hanging down from my mouth (which amused me for much longer than I would have originally thought and I even contemplated taking a picture ... )
Friday, July 23, 2010
So in other words, I am trying to reduce the amount of un-fun stuff that I carry around so that I have room to pack fun things like... People magazines. (I never said I was a good person.)
Ok, so the latest things I decided to eliminate: liquidy stuff... and underwear.. but the underwear I will save for another story. (I know, you can't wait. You are probably thinking this is the best blog in the world.)
Back to the point.
I bought magic soap.
For real. Check it out: http://www.drbronner.com/.
It smells like peppermint and it has 18 uses or something...I don't know what they all are, but for my purposes, it is shampoo, body soap, laundry detergent (very importante when you are eliminating the number of underwears you pack...), and toothpaste. Ok, I'll admit, I haven't brushed my teeth with it yet. But I am going to, tonight.
This trip is its test run, so I still brought toothpaste and shampoo and stuff.. but if it works out... IMAGINE THE POSSIBILITIES! Just one little bottle is all that I will need. Think of how many trashy magazines could fill the space that all of those little miniature bottles of body wash/shampoo/conditioner used to take! (ok, its probably only 1, but still!)
I have been itching to share about this magic soap, so I appreciate the blog-world outlet. My work companions are sick of hearing about this. They haven't said so (they are very nice people), but I can tell. To be fair, I updated them on the soap saga three different times today. And the saga is not really much of a saga... its more like.. telling someone you just washed your hands/hair/face/underwear/etc.
I hope you all find the equivalent of magic soap today.
PS - everything I own (including my clothes, hair and skin) now smells like peppermint. I am still deciding if this is an upside or a downside to this new system.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
My legs are still itchy from the Vietnamese bug bites....
and I'm about to leave again.
Vietnam was INCREDIBLE. So, so incredible, for so many reasons. I have so much to share still about it...
Fast forward fast forward fast forward....
10 days between trips this time, and it went FAST.
Between a healthy bout of jet lag, lots of gear-up work for DR, plus some time in and around New Haven with wonderful loved ones... 10 days went by in a blink.
But in a good way.
Because I loved my time in Vietnam, I loved my time at home, and I am incredibly excited about what is ahead.
Right now I'm too sleepy to write coherent things, so I'll put up a couple of my favorite pictures of Vietnam..
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Status: thinking all of this is so so so worth the sweat and the bugs and the rice for every meal.
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
3. How every time I ask someone how to say a word in Vietnamese, they come back at me with something that I cannot even imagine pronouncing. And then I try. And then they laugh.
4. The hats. Seeing women in these hats was my "Whoa you are in Vietnam!!! moment." You know:
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Me: (holding elevator door) Good morning
Other Person: Wow, you must be new to the building.
Me: How did you know?
O.P.: No one ever holds the elevator.
O.P.: (looking at what I have in my hand) Wow, those are some really big chili peppers you have.
O.P. They are nice.
Me: Thank you.
(third person in the elevator never even looks up)
I am not sure what this means, but it has to mean something.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
There is about a $100 donation that is associated with it so that they can cover the costs of the search for a match etc.