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Turn it up...

Growing up I remember my mom stacking up her old vinyl records in the big chest style stereo in the living room and turning up the volume. It was the soundtrack of our lives as we cleaned house, cooked meals...tackling whatever the day had in store. In those days it was often Loretta Lynn, Conway Twitty, Kenny Rogers, and Willie Nelson (to name just a few) who filled our air waves. We owned that old stereo for a long time...well after cassette tapes became the norm. (If I remember right it played 8-tack tapes in addition to having a tuner for listening to just the radio. But for some reason playing our vinyl sticks out the most.) I used to love the richness of the sound it produced. The deep heavy base. I even had a small collection of records...the soundtracks to Grease and Saturday Night Fever (which is actually in my basement now...though I have nothing to play it on), and an album by the 80s heart throb Shaun Cassidy.

I write about this because it helps to explain why even now I'd rather have the tunes, rather than the tube, on when I'm at home. Why I turn to music when I'm happy, sad, stressed, feeling sexy, feeling playful, need a release, want to dance...etc, etc, etc. Our music collection is quite eclectic and more easily accessed since the invention of the MP3 player. Though, having grown up in the mid-west (in the rural mid-west mind you) our collection probably isn't as broad spectrumed as someone who lives in a larger metro area or who frequents music fests. Regardless, the variety serves me well in my times of need.

Take post RAGBRAI, for example, when I'm simultaneously trying to remember the sweet treat that is RAGBRAI while getting back into the groove of normal life. Frequently played music during the month of August....Bob Marley and "whatever songs of the year" helped to define our week.

Sunday mornings you'll usually find me makin' waffles and hanging with the family, the cool ocean inspired vibes of Jack Johnson or the familiar lyrics of Dave Matthew's playin' in the back ground.

With the arrival of spring and the ability to once again open up the windows, the country girl in me comes out...Skynyrd, Tim McGraw, the college memory laden lyrics of David Lee Murphy's Dust On The Bottle.

Right about now I can guarantee my husband thinks this is a funny post for me to be writing because he'll be the first to point out I'm terrible about knowing the name of a song, or who sings it, or the actual lyrics that are being sung. I don't care. For me it's about the beat and the feel and mood. So read on...

Over the years I've discovered I'm a bit of a rocker girl. Especially when life is stressful and I feel like telling the world to fuck off! Not the dark, screaming, death kinda rock. But rock. You know Pearl Jam, U2, Bon Jovi, the Stones, Aerosmith, Train. This is the Genre where I'm probably the WORST about knowing who sings what...I just know what I like when I hear it.

Timing is everything, so it is said. We're finally to the reason I decided to write this whole post in the first place. (Which I had not planned to be this long or involved!) Last week on the dooce blog, Heather posted a link to the song Sex On Fire by the Kings of Leon. I had never heard of KOL, but their 4th album is being released on the 23rd of this month. I'm hooked. I've listened to Sex On Fire like 20 times since that first click. Maybe it's just where I am right now. Maybe it's because these boys rock. I'm excited. I know both the name of the song AND the band who sings it...though the actual lyrics are still somewhat of mystery to me. I think our music collection is gonna get a little broader here in about 13 days! (Maybe a little bit longer considering....)



My Most Read Thoughts


Today while I sat in a classroom supervising students as they worked on their math assignments, I watched Lexi through the window enjoying time with her friends during recess. My heart smiled.

Those moments, moments of learning and carefree fun, those are the moments that SHOULD make up a school day. As a Mom, and an elementary school employee, my heart is breaking over the news and images coming out of Connecticut today. 
I send my kids off to school everyday without a second thought that they will return safely come day's end, just as I'm sure each one of those parents in Newtown did this morning.
Every day I walk into my school for work without a second thought to my personal safety, just as I'm sure each of those teachers, paras, custodians, sectretaries, etc in Newtown did this morning. 
Theories will be published. Evidence will be presented. Words will be exchanged about gun control and the need for change in our current culture of violence. I don't suspec…

DIY: Reusable Produce Bags

With Earth Day festivities gearing up for tomorrow, I thought I'd take a moment to post a short DIY tutorial on making your own reusable cloth produce bags. (Tutorial inspired by my favorite crafty mom blog, Crazy Mom Quilts. Produce bags inspired by running into my friend Laura at the grocery store while she was stuffing her produce into these.) This is my next step in the fight against the excessive use of plastic bags.

Our family has been making small environmentally minded changes in our daily lives over the past few years. We use reusable shopping bags. We've stopped buying/using Ziploc bags and plastic wrap. I'm trying to commute around town via bike more. I'm being more mindful about where the food we buy comes from and how it was produced. We more often hang our laundry on the line to dry in the spring and summer instead of just throwing it in the dryer. (Which is convenient at the moment since our dryer has decided to quit drying.) As we use up chemically clean…

Sunday Morning Silly...

Once in a while Dando's curiosity urges him to venture off the bookshelf so he check out other toys in the house.

I think he thinks Froggy is missing a few marbles.