Sunday, June 20, 2010

...a road trip

It's time to get out of Podunk for a couple of weeks. First stop, a visit with my folks in Cove--do a bit of yard work, ride the valley, sit in the shade and do nothing...

Next up, Boise and a few days with Arlene. We talked on the phone the other night and she had Jadyn with her. I asked Jadyn if she wanted to go for a bike ride with me like last year. In typical three year old fashion she said, "No. I want to walk and take the wagon." (I hope we can convince her to go for a ride, too!)

After leaving Boise I'll be heading for Prairie City and their Bicycle Invitational. I'm not sure how many days I'll ride--I emailed for more information but their organization seems kind of loosey-goosey.

After riding and sleeping on the ground I'll be ready to head to Burns for a comfy bed at Lani's. She knows I may show up on their doorstep any day that week. It's always busy with so many kiddos, but Lani and I will find time to visit.

Then....home again, home again, to work on a summer class, ride with my buddies, sew, sew, sew, and hopefully see some friends I rarely see during the busy school year.
Time to go!

Friday, June 18, 2010


Summer is officially here.

Yesterday was the last day with students, and today I slowly and methodically packed up my classroom. When I was younger and had kids at home I couldn't wait to get away from school. Things would be crammed into cupboards in a slap-dash fashion, and I'd be at the district office, ready to check out, as early as allowed. The car would have been packed the night before, and the kids would be eagerly waiting for our summer adventures to begin. But now...while I do have adventures planned, there's no sense of urgency. Now I prefer to sort and toss because in just a few short weeks I'll be back in that clean, freshly painted classroom, pulling everything out again. I'll be glad I took the time to organize, but I do miss the excitement of! Time to start planning my adventures....

Thursday, June 17, 2010

...a fun, full weekend

The fun started on Friday morning when my students put on their Little Red Riding Hood skit and ate the cookies we had made earlier in the week. Not a single one of them had ever made cookies before. What a delight to hear shy little Sandra read her lines out clear and loud.

Friday evening I drove to Pendleton for Ayanel's graduation. Such a proud family! (And rightly so!) It was a fun surprise to get to see another former student graduate as well, and I managed to find her in the crowd to give her a hug.

After graduation was over I hurried back home--my youngest sister Lani had called and said they would be driving through on their way to Montana. Could they stop by for a visit? Of course! They were going to keep driving and get a motel in Washington, but I offered beds and camping mats instead. Lani and I were up before anyone else and got a rare chance to sit on the patio with our coffee and visit. I made pancakes, then sent them on their way. I needed to get to Portland!

The weather was absolutely beautiful that morning, and the drive through the gorge was, well, gorgeous. Nate had looked online to see what was happening in Portland that day, and had discovered a bike festival and parade. After we parked and were walking towards the main street we saw all kinds of bikes and trailers. I thought that what we were seeing was the tail-end of the parade.

We wandered down the street, enjoying the people and their bikes, then found a spot at Amnesia Brewing for a bite to eat. It turns out we hadn't missed the parade at all. I must admit I've never seen/heard a goth drum corps before--they were quite good!

Next up were all kinds of people on all kinds of bikes. The families we had seen earlier were part of the parade, along with some not-so traditional participants.

After a bit it appeared that the parade had come to an end, but then there was an excited buzz in the crowd. What's this? Nude cyclists? Can that be legal? It turns out it is. (It's a protest, protected under Oregon's constitution.)

After that bit of excitement, Nate and I were ready to move on. He took me to one of his favorite longboarding sites--Mt. Tabor. I strolled around, soaking in some much-needed sunshine while he did his thing. The view of Mt. Hood was spectacular!

By evening, we were tired and hungry, so we collected Andrea and headed out to the pub where Katie works. She loves the new aprons I made for her, and got lots of compliments.

On Sunday we slept in, had a leisurely breakfast, then just hung out all day. The wide front porch on Nate's house was the perfect hangout for me and my book. That evening we headed downtown for Carlos' graduation bash. It was a lot of fun, and many people came out to celebrate his accomplishment. I got to meet his mom--what a sweet person!

Katie and I spent some time together on Monday doing (serious, non-fun personal business because I had taken a personal day and they are not to be used for fun) then it was time for me to come home.

A good weekend.

Monday, June 7, 2010


I was going to jump in my truck right after school on Friday and head to Idaho for a century ride. My friends Kathie and Bob are going, and I was looking forward to visiting Arlene as well.
But...Katie's boyfriend Carlos is graduating from PSU on Sunday, and I'm invited to the party afterwards. I want to be there for Carlos. I {think} he's going to be my son-in-law. :-)

Then a former student called to invite me to her college graduation--at 7:00 on Friday. Ayanel was my student 16 years ago. She was an older student and I was in my early 30s. We became friends and have stayed in touch throughout the years. I want to be there for her, too.
So, I choose relationships over riding. I can put lots of miles on my bike this summer for free, I ride with Kathie and Bob all the time, and I'll see Arlene at the end of the month. But Carlos and Ayanel will pass these milestones in their lives just this once. I would regret not being there.

Friday, June 4, 2010

...a good book

I should be cleaning the house.

I should be working on a sewing project.

I should be walking to the grocery store to buy milk.

I should be cleaning the science projects out of the fridge.

I should be writing overdue letters.

I should be figuring out what I'm wearing to graduation tomorrow.

But what do I do instead?


My friend Janie gave me a book because I took care of her dog for a weekend. (Totally unexpected, and totally unnecessary, but I'm so glad she did!)

I knew it was going to be a good book because it's one of her all-time favorites (and I trust her judgement).

I knew I should save it for just a couple more weeks when school is out and I can read to my heart's content.

I resisted at first--just read the fly leaf and glanced at the first few pages. But the other night I picked it up and told myself, "Just half an hour, then I'll go to bed."


And now...I only put it down when I absolutely must go to sleep or get out the door or when something intense has happened and I need a mental break (like now).

And I had a thought...

What if reading this book is what I should be doing right now? What if this escape is exactly what I need to get through these last few hectic days of school?

I think it is.

(Thanks, Janie!)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

...a sing-along

I'm riding in the rain,
Just riding in the rain,
What a clammy wet feelin'
I'm soaked to the skin.
I'm cursing at clouds,
So dark up above,
The mud’s in my eyes,
And I'm ready for sun.
Let the stormy clouds go,
Everyone that I know,
Is tired of the rain.
It really is a pain.
I ride down the lane
With a grumpy refrain
Just ridin',
Ridin' in the rain!