Everything Takes a Lot Longer…

I had two weekday mornings to sleep in, and now I’m up early again. Ah school. Yes. I’m coming. Apparently parking will be an issue, so I’m debating getting a Lyft…what are the odds that they can find my house? Hmmm. Who knows.

I remember this about summer…everything takes a lot longer than you think it will. Here’s the pluses: I have everything I need to fix the sink area. I also learned how to use a tile saw. I hate saws. They scare the crap out of me. I’m pretty convinced I’m going to cut off my hand every time I use one. But I did it anyway. Progress! Home Depot twice in one day! Now that’s summer. Some day I’ll find the money, time, and energy to do the carpet in the rest of the house…that’ll be a crazy summer. Or remodel the kitchen! Need a lottery ticket on that one.

Anyway, I did manage some artsy stuff as well. I think I spent close to 5 hours writing a blogpost about the art and poetry exhibit one of my art groups, Feminist Image Group (FIG), had back in December. Precisely why did I take so long to even start it? Because I knew it would take a long time. You can read it here. There’s finding all the photos and resizing them and finding all the titles and artist names, but then also checking for permissions on the poems and then copying, reformatting, and in some cases retyping those. But it’s posted! Now I can move on to the more recent show. I also posted a quick thing to the other art group whose blog I manage, California Fibers. We had our website professionally redone and I’ve never used Squarespace before. It seemed fairly straightforward. All that stuff takes time. I do it because it matters; it makes those groups better.

My next mental task (despite the work I’ll be doing today) is to figure out what I can do for the refugee problem here in the US…with kids being locked up with no essentials for days, weeks, months on end. I don’t have a lot of spare money. I might have airline miles. I feel like being in San Diego, close to the border, there must be something else I can do besides Paypal. But I don’t know what it is. I can’t even formulate a drawing in my head…and drawings don’t save kids’ lives. Or adults for that matter. It’s true I didn’t vote for this president…and the people who are in office who I did vote for, they are pretty vocal. They need to be more so. Sometime today I’m going to figure out how I can contact those people and do so. In between smart-designing middle schools. Or whatever I’m doing today. The NPR news report I heard yesterday about the conditions in the facilities where they are holding children was disgusting. This is not the America I want to live in. There is no excuse for this. No wishy washy lawyer language that makes it OK.

With that in my heart this morning, I’ll be off to work to figure out how to teach kids. Refugees some of them.

I did some sewing stuff yesterday…I just realized that I missed the leaves on the bottom right. Duh.

That baobab fruit was in the way.

I traced this and it’s in my bag for the conference. I don’t like down time. I may not even pull it out, but at least I’ll have it. And a sketchbook.

Sitting for long periods of time sucks. Hopefully it will not be a lot of that. I need action. Not sitting.

I ironed for a little bit in the afternoon…

And then after dinner…all those fabrics for one succulent.

I had to stare at the drawing for a long time before I decided on hair color. Here’s everything I’ve ironed so far and a chaotic pile of all the fabrics.

I like to clean up before I start the next day…

It helps me see everything. I honestly don’t have much left…some clouds and rain, and the eyeballs. I think that’s about it. A rainbow. So I could easily be done tonight and starting on the trimming of the pieces.

My cold is still here, but barely. Hopefully tonight or tomorrow I’ll have the energy to walk the dogs. I need to start exercising. I’m feeling blah. Heavy. Tired! Still. OK. Work, then political crap, then art. Or all three will merge. We’ll see.

Vacation Rant…

Late today. Ya know why? Cuz it’s vacation. That’s why. Hallelujah, because even though I still will have to work almost every day over break, at least I can do it in my pajamas on my couch (OK, well, not every day, because I’m going to my brother’s house and I don’t know where I will be grading there. I just know I will be grading.). I think every goddamned idiot and politician (oh wait, those might be an intersecting group) who thinks teachers are overpaid, money-grubbing child-haters should come teach in my class the week before a holiday. By themselves. On the same bathroom schedule we get. And then go home and grade all the shit we grade. Yeah. That. Fuckers. I think half my team (or more) hit borderline exhaustion by the end of day Wednesday. And we got up and taught for two more days.

I worked corporate. This does not fucking compare. At all. My job is physically, mentally, emotionally, and intellectually exhausting. I haven’t been a teacher all my life. I have many years of experience outside of education. I’ve worked in the corporate world as support staff AND as a professional, and I’ve also been self-employed. This job kicks your butt.

So I deserve this week AWAY from the classroom. Don’t kid yourself that I won’t still be working. I will. Some manage to not work all break, and I know that’s what I need, but I can’t afford it right now. I’m aiming for that for Winter Break. But that means busting my butt a little right now.

Moving on. I got up this morning when I wanted to. Well, after Kitten woke me up to inform me of the imminent rabbit invasion. I calmed her down, explaining that a single rabbit was not going to take down our kingdom. And then went back to sleep, trying to make up a few of the missing 2 hours a night from the last three months of teaching (that’s 140 hours short right now…gonna take me a while to catch up).

I finished tracing Wonder Under on Bathtub 5 this morning…

Nov 21 15 003 small

As you can see, it’s all piled up, ready to be cut out, except for the cat butt on the sheets. If you have cats, you know they must inhabit all of your projects. I eventually got her off of them, but she swiped her claws at me, so I gave up on trying to cover the light table again. Eventually she’ll go take a nap and I can clean up after her.

Both cats desperately need more attention apparently than I am giving them…

Nov 21 15 002 small

Both of them stalking me. It’s too bad they don’t really like each other. They used to be OK, but not after Babygirl. Oh well.

As you can see, it is a beautiful day in sunny Southern California. It’s supposed to hit 90 degrees. So I’m heading for Seattle and snow, and kind of panicking about clothes and shoes, but whatever. I’ll take a big sweatshirt and complain a lot to my sister-in-law, and she’ll give me shit for having thin blood. Damn straight. I live in So Cal for a reason.

So artwise, this week might be a bit of a wash. I need to go to school tomorrow to finish grading all the cell models that were turned in. I’m hoping to finish cutting out all the Wonder Under by tomorrow night. Then last night, while trying to fall asleep, I half-dreamed moving all the drawers around in my office so that the colors I use more would be more accessible. Luckily, I recently replaced all of them, so it would be pretty easy to just pull drawers and move them. But I’m not progressing quickly on the rest of the clean up. Because I’m never bloody home! Or I’m grading. Or I’m exhausted. So I didn’t leave much time around the house this week to get shit done. Oh well. I’m looking forward to hanging with my lovely family! OK, my crazy family. So I’ll probably get some drawing in up there. Although, my big sketchbook doesn’t fit in my luggage. I’m thinking of a trip to Michael’s to get a medium-sized one. I have a lot that are 9×12″ and the one I draw most of my quilts in is 14×17″. So something a little bigger. I think. And smaller than the big one. If I can find a coupon. Found one. Love the internet. Really, I do. I also ordered a small keyboard for my iPad so I can type up some stuff on the plane. Can’t use the work computer for that. I may have a bit too much tech. It’s possible. But it makes some things so much easier and faster. Unfortunately, there is no tech at the moment that can help me get the studio straightened up. It’s just gotta be me.

I have to say one thing about the refugee situation. I honestly think many Americans have lost their humanity, that they are so backwater in their NIMBY attitude, in their fear of everything government, the military, and politics have brought down on us, that they cannot even see the fear and hardship in the eyes of the adults that are coming over from Syria or wherever, but if they can look in the eyes of these refugee children and still be assholes, then I don’t want to live in the same country as they do. My America is not those people. I hate what we project to the rest of the world sometimes, and this is one of those times. These are the kids I teach. You hear their stories, you see how small some of them are from not enough good food, and you know the shit they survived, and for anyone to think these people are terrorists…hell, I live in East County San Diego…we have some big fat white terrorists brewing right here, some true crazies. We grow our own. And they call themselves Christian. Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush say they think we should only take the Christian refugees. What the fuck? I don’t care what your religion is…don’t use it as an excuse to turn away people who are starving, terrified, and scared to death. We take them in, we take care of them, we teach them, we help them. That’s what America is supposed to be about…hell, that’s what being human is supposed to be about. If you don’t believe that, then there is something seriously wrong with you. I’d like to think the students I have hear me talking about acceptance, about not hurting each other, about the biology of ALL humans, and they will grow up with that in their heads and hearts, not the hate rhetoric that I hear every day on the news. My Muslim students don’t hate like some of the Christians I’ve heard from do. They just want to be safe and warm and be able to learn without bombs falling on their schools.

That’s my rant. I’ve spent too many days listening to this shit and shaking my head at the crazy. You don’t like it? Don’t read my blog. Easy.

OK. Now I can be on vacation.