Music: FLY by Maddie and Tae

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Teen sensations Maddie and Tae scored a #1 single last year with their brilliant, funny and feminist GIRL IN A COUNTRY SONG.  Their new single, FLY is so lovely, the tears were rolling before I heard half the lyrics. FLY is a sweet anthem of encouragement in challenging times. Keep on climbing, though the ground might shake Just keep on reaching … [Read more...]

A Disgruntled Snowman’s Snow Fight

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We may be disgruntled by the snow, but it is here to stay -- at least for a couple of months.  So we might as well find humor about it where we can.  I've long been a fan and follower of the folks over at Animation Chefs.  Their goal is to: "lead kids into a thinking, making, sharing pattern that will change their relationship with … [Read more...]

Christmas Spirit, It’s Free

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Christmas can be a tough time of year. I know this from experience. It’s easy to become overwhelmed with the demands on our time, bank accounts, sanity. For many years, I have struggled to hold onto any kind of genuine Christmas spirit, and then I beat myself up for not feeling the way I should feel. So helpful. I am learning that it doesn’t have … [Read more...]

Desert Diversity, Saguaro Style

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Those of us who feasted on a diet of Looney Tunes and Doritos each Saturday morning as children probably grew up thinking that those funny desert plants zipping past the roadrunner and coyote were all pretty much the same: deep green, trident-looking in their shape, with three equidistant arms. If you’re like me, you also grew up associating … [Read more...]

What if Fresh Produce Had A Mascot?

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When we think of fresh fruits and vegetables, we immediately think "healthy."  And not about actually feeling better. We think more about all the work -- storing, cleaning, chopping, slicing, cooking that it takes to prepare them, than about the wonderful taste and texture that comes with them. And somehow, we rarely associate fresh … [Read more...]

Book: MIXED FEELINGS by Olivia R. Burton

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I read a lot of galleys. A lot of them. My dream is to discover the next big thing before they’re actually, you know, the next big thing. Everybody loves to have a good “I knew them when” story. Sometimes it doesn’t work out.  I’ve been in a reading slump for longer than I care to think about. Then I got an email from Candlemark & Gleam. I … [Read more...]

Who Doesn’t Love The Fair?

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I don’t.  There.  I said it.  I don’t like the state fair. When the family packed up to make our annual trek, I tried hiding under the couch but someone spotted me.  I tried to beg off for financial reasons.  Think of ALL the money we’d save if I didn’t go.  Sadly, it was Teacher Day, and I qualified for free admission.  It cost exactly the same … [Read more...]

Freezing Eggs, A Perk For Female Employees?

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When I read the headline that Apple and Facebook are now offering to freeze female employees’ eggs as a perk of employment, I thought I had entered the Twilight Zone! Is that taking progress a bit too far?  Is this move a way for companies to push women to push their choice to have children later and later in life? Convenient for the company.  … [Read more...]

Visitors @ My Window

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I have cats. So, when I heard a “thud” at the window, I assumed it was one of my furry kids batting at a bug or fly that had somehow gotten into the house. When both cats appeared from opposite sides of the room, running toward the window, I was a bit puzzled. I knew something had collided with the glass doors, but it didn’t sound like the typical … [Read more...]

Movie: Jon Favreau’s CHEF

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Though I’m late to the party, I’m thrilled to have discovered Jon Favreau’s fabulous film CHEF.   A sleeper hit when it was released in May on a modest budget and with no marketing to speak of, CHEF gained traction solely by word of mouth and social media and is now having a successful second life on DVD. There is so much that CHEF gets right … [Read more...]

Is It Possible To Legislate Respect?

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Kansas City just became the latest in a list of cities considering a law against street harassment that would encompass everything from catcalls to drivers forcing bicyclists off the road.  Clearly, harassment is a crime, but is it possible to legislate respect? The abuse discussed in HuffPo’s article Kansas City Might Outlaw Catcalling shows how … [Read more...]

The Art of The Virtual “Smudgy Hug”

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Humans are social beings.  We crave human-to-human contact.  Even as machines and technology take over more and more aspects of our lives, we try our best to humanize them. Think of our phones.  We give them names, voices and mannerisms.  We dress them.  We play with them.  We share our lives with them.  Why?  Because, even though they are … [Read more...]