Burro Bushes

when I was a kid, we sang a song about the kukuburro in the ol’ gum tree (merry merry king of the bush is he)

Today I conquered the last of the burro bushes that grow seasonally in our cactus garden & it made me think of the kukuburro song. Funny how Aleve & Ryobi Pole Saw are the kings of these bushes!



Commemorating 9-11-01 RW&KW style

Commemorating September Eleventh RW&KW style:

1) realize wardrobe is missing anything that’s both professional and red white & blue – wear navy blue NAU polo & khakis. Put flag scarf in hair.

2) snap photos outdoors and enjoy the crisp fresh air


3) Donate Blood

Makin’ it Mo’ Betta: Slow Cooker Garlic & Brown Sugar Chicken

Slow Cooker Brown Sugar & Garlic Chicken

adapted from Six Sisters’ Stuff

4-6 chicken breasts *I used 2 lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts

1 cup packed brown sugar *I used 3/4 cup

2/3 cup vinegar  *I used apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup lemon-lime soda *I used Sprite Zero

2-3 Tablespoons minced garlic *I used about 1 1/2 T. fresh minced garlic

2 Tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

2 Tablespoons corn starch

2 Tablespoons waterRed pepper flakes (optional)


Spray slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray. Place chicken (frozen, thawed or fresh) inside slow cooker. Mix together brown sugar, vinegar, soda, garlic, soy sauce, and pepper together. Pour over chicken. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4 hours. Take chicken pieces out of slow cooker (mine basically fell apart) and pour remaining sauce into saucepan. Place saucepan over high heat. Mix together corn starch and water, pour into saucepan, and mix well. Let sauce come to a boil and boil for 2-3 minutes, or until it starts to thicken and turns into a glaze. Remove from heat and let sit for a minute or two (it will continue to thicken as it cools down).

Sprinkle red pepper flakes on top if desired.  This can be served over rice or noodles, but we had ours with a baked potato on the side (It’s good on top of the potato too!)

via Makin’ it Mo’ Betta: Slow Cooker Garlic & Brown Sugar Chicken.


Yeah yeah I know – anxiety is the opposite of grace. worry doesn’t empty tomorrow of its troubles, it empties today of its strength – yes. You’re right. But at 3:30 this morning, all the transcendental knowledge and wisdom and grace in the world abandoned me as I rode the waves of an anxiety attack the likes of which I’ve not experienced at all in my 30s.

I had been struggling with the anxiety for almost a full week. But the longer I struggled, the more my brain spiraled out of control. What started as just too much work product in too few days triggered a “hey, i got out of public accounting to get away from this insanity” and landed me in an exponentially magnified existential crisis by my boss asking me one question about one error from 14 months ago. (Big words = I had an attack of the who am I & why am I here & why can’t I ever do anything right crazies!)

Boom a tailspin was born & it didn’t recede til this morning when I made sure with my boss that we were all good. (If you don’t know the anxiety tailspin, I’ll spare you the mental drama. If you do know it, that’s all the description you needed).

Ordinarily I wouldn’t share that on my blog. But Lisa-Jo Baker’s post about Mom Guilt reminded me of the tailspon.

You can read her post here – lisa jo

Why did it remind me of that? Because somehow I hauled my head out of my asinine tailspin before I got one of those “mom-portunities” to respond the “right” way to my daughter when she needed her momma to tell her it was going to be ok, to help her find humor and to be proud of her for doing what she believed was right.

There’s always mom guilt –
1) I cheated on my diet & had a bagel for breakfast *ooooohhhh* and
2) I sometimes take 15 extra minutes in the morning and let the dog go with us on the drive to school *bad mommy* and
3) I think that rotten eCard “children shouldn’t sacrifice so you can have the life you want, you should sacrifice so your children have the life they deserve” needs a footnote that says “this message is intended for deadbeat parents, do not take it as a verbal assault against relocating, having a career, being in school, not having 3 ponies & a unicorn, etc”

But at the end of the day, all moms pray in the same language: Lord I’m tired. Please watch over my family so I can sleep. Thank you for our blessings, our gifts, and the mysteries of the world around us so that we may be infatuated with a world of wonder and grace; not a world of fear & power mongering & terror & war. Amen.


From The Chive

From The Chive

The Western Canon – what’s your take?

Earlier this week I came “out” as not having taken a Literature course since High School. Whether that’s ironic or not depends on what you think of someone with a freshly minted MA in English not having taken a lit class in the better part of 20 years …

Despite that, I did spend that time that I wasn’t in school doing a pretty significant self-study of the Western Canon – I didn’t read it all … it’s a lifetime pursuit … and I intentionally omitted Victorian Literature and American literature from the same era.


The internet wasn’t what it is today when I started it – I actually got the hardcover version of Howard Bloom’s book from the Library & used it to select my reading (I see there’s a new text called All Things Shining that might serve as a shortcut to the Bloom text)


But now that we’ve got our ever present albatross (monkey? demon?) Wikipedia, the contents of the Western Canon are a lot easier to list than they once were:

For purposes of discussion – let’s use the Harvard Classics  (copied wholesale from the Wiki page) – what would you add? what would you remove?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_canon http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harvard_Classics

Contents[edit source | editbeta]

The Harvard Classics Shelf of Fiction[edit source | editbeta]

The Harvard Classics Shelf of Fiction was selected by Charles W. Eliot, LLD (1834-1926), with notes and introductions by William Allan Neilson. It also features an index to Criticisms and Interpretations.

UPDATED with a challenge ;) Culture: make your own – no not yogurt – and quit letting 2 people define culture rot

Can’t speak for anyone else but I think this needs to be said:

What matters to you, your kids, your life, your happiness, your satisfaction happens right there within your family. Turn off the t.v. if it offends you (duh?) If you object to the lousy role models you see on t.v. then FIND OTHER ROLE MODELS. It’s not difficult. If you can’t find a grandparent, teacher, coach, volunteer, or other excellent role model in your day to day life, there are MILLIONS of them in the US alone.


There are 4,495 Title IV eligible degree granting institutions of higher education in the US and 14.6 MILLION full time college students. Fourteen point six million people pursuing higher education and you’re focused on a music awards show. YOU ARE AN IDIOT. Regardless of your “margin of error” 2 people vs 14.6 MILLION isn’t statistically significant.


Ok, degree granting institutions are too intimidating for you or too far away? There are one hundred nineteen THOUSAND nine hundred eighty-seven (yes, 119,987) LIBRARIES in the united states.


You say you don’t want to read a book, look at a magazine, thumb through the paper, borrow a movie, listen to an audio book to absorb the single most wonderful miracle in the entirety of humanity: human & the pursuit of knowledge? Fine. Go to a museum & absorb it there.

There are 17,500 museums in the United States.

The US is composed of about 3.794 million square miles.

And the average licensed driver in the US drives 13,476 miles per year.

So every year with your car, you’re covering enough distance to encompass 15,858 full time college students, 15 degree-granting institutions, 426 libraries and 62 museums. And you’re focused on 2 idiots on an awards show as representing our “culture rot”?

I’m willing to bet the people who are sharing the 2 idiots – whether positive or negative – on Facebook haven’t spent as much time at museums, libraries, or universities COMBINED in the past year as they’ve spent complaining about those 2 idiots.

It’s marketing … and not only is it working … it’s making you its slave. Who’s the idiot? You or them?

P.S. if you can find 5 people who posted a photo of or the names of those 2 examples of “culture rot” in the past 4 days AND have also been to a Library, Museum AND University (for the pursuit of new knowledge, not for alcohol, drugs, standardized tests, or athletic events) in the past year – I will read a piece of Victorian Era literature or one of its American contemporaries (which I loathe as much as the whigners loathe the 2 examples of culture rot). So bring it on – prove to me you’re not a bunch of uncultured whigners and I’ll be lady enough to read Brontë or Austen or Tennyson. One piece of Victorian literature per five “found” exhortants of culture rot who’ve been to a museum, library AND University in the pursuit of knowledge in the past year (yes, online universities count)

Five Minute Friday – Last

Last … from Five Minute Friday at LisaJoBaker (whew! I’m back … it’s been too long!)

next Tuesday I begin my next last academic adventure 😉 I always say it’s the LAST ONE but this one might really be it.

But this morning I’m mulling over the other “last” things that others may cherish more than we do ourselves – for example Tales from the Nursery is raising 4 boys, the eldest is 5 years younger than my daughter (actually TFTN is the same age younger than I than her eldest is from my dd). It’s funny how your perspective changes as your kids age  –  and the things you forget you worried about – and the things that you realize worried you just the right amount.

Last also reminds me of the print that hung in my Grandma’s kitchen for as long as my childhood – a gilded frame with tempered glass and a painting of The Last Supper in it. The last time I visited her it wasn’t there – funny that I didn’t notice when she took it down – or even when and trying to reimagine her kitchen on various visits with or without seems impossible …

Which makes you wonder what will be important to you when you’re in your dotage that’s important to you now that was important to you when your brain was abducted by littles … and it makes you contemplate this cartoon that I found this morning

with props to Col Chris Hadfield and Zen Pencils for the quote and the rendering:

zen pencils cartoon