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Posts Tagged ‘Mr. Smith Goes to Washington’

Beautiful Puget Sound

Beautiful Puget Sound

Well isn’t this nice. The whole summer is gone and I didn’t post one blog entry in the entire three months of it. Probably better for you–while the summer as a whole went by in the blink of an eye, the individual days were kind of uneventful. We watched the birds, ate some great dinners at home, and took frequent dips in the pool…and we watched a LOT of Food Network, since that was the only thing worth watching on television. It wouldn’t have made very good reading on a regular basis. We did do a few things that made the summer fun, so I’ll give you a brief recap of the happenings since I last saw you (since we’re catching up and everything): 

Jackie and Evan at Bucee's

Jackie and Evan at Bucee’s

The ESC6 VGO robots with TEA Commissioner Williams

The ESC6 VGO robots with TEA Commissioner Williams

In June I visited with my sister Jackie and her husband Evan while they explored Austin for a possible move in the fall. They ended up deciding not to move there after all–Evan is instead going to be an awesome pilot in the Air Force–but we had a good time anyway. We went tubing on the Bastrop River (thank you Bastrop River Company!), visited the outlet mall, and introduced Jackie and Evan to the phenomenon that is Buc-ee’s. I got a terrific blister from walking around Austin all day, and had to get some new comfortable walking shoes. While in Austin, I got to accompany the ESC Region 6 Technology team and three VGO Robots at the Texas State Capitol. We gave three home-bound kids a virtual field trip, and introduced the VGO program to some pretty important people in Austin, like Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams and several of our State legislators. I also watched Mr. Smith Goes to Washington at the historic classic Paramount Theatre in Austin, on the same day that Wendy Davis started her historic filibuster in the Texas Senate. 

JoAn and Don in Snohomish

JoAn and Don in Snohomish

Jamey on the the whale boat. We saw three orcas, two minkes, and two bald eagles.

Jamey on the the whale boat. We saw three orcas, two minkes, and two bald eagles.

Me feeding an alpaca. Those animals crack me up for some reason.

Me feeding an alpaca. Those animals crack me up for some reason.

In July we escaped the heat for a week and went to visit my aunt and uncle JoAn and Don in Snohomish, Washington (just North of Seattle). That was SUCH a beautiful trip, and I am so glad that we went. We sat on the porch eating peanuts and solving the problems of the world, shared technology stories, toured downtown Snohomish and Seattle, drank lots of Starbucks coffee, and picked cherries and raspberries on a fantastic farm–I even got to feed an alpaca. We celebrated the Fourth of July with a marshmallow and weenie roast in my aunt and uncle’s back yard, and we went whale watching, something I highly recommend that everyone do at least once. The best part about it: the temperature didn’t get over 83 degrees the entire time we were there. The only bad part was coming home to the sauna that is Central Texas in July. Also in July: we went to a concert in Houston by pianists Michele McLaughlin and Scott D. Davis and enjoyed a really nice afternoon visiting with them the next day before they headed to Dallas. We also enjoyed visits from my cousin Troy and his fiancee Valerie, and from our friends the Geisels–we’re so glad that Nicole, Olive and Samantha stopped here on their cross-country trek, and we hope they come back again soon.

Jamey and his new toy

Jamey and his new toy

In August I co-hosted a meeting on regional economic development with Sam Houston State University’s Center for Rural Studies that proved to be a success. I think it will lead to good things in this region.  A few weeks later we went to a house concert at the lovely home of musicians Michael and Kendra Logozar in Round Rock. Stanton Lanier was the featured guest performer, and he was fabulous. As a bonus, we got to spend some quality time with Jamey’s Dad and his sister and Carly, always a good thing. Also in August: Jamey got a 3-D printer at his work, and every day he comes home with a new gadget that he printed that day. Pretty neat technology. I’ve been assured that we will have one in our home before too long. 

OK, now you’re all caught up so I will give you the lists. Hopefully in the coming months I’ll have a little bit more to say, if for no other reason than because we’ll back in prime time. In the meantime, have a great September. Enjoy!

top 20

There's nothing liked freshly-picked Washington cherries.

There’s nothing liked freshly-picked Washington cherries.

  1. The Pacific Northwest
  2. my parents, who celebrated their 41st anniversary on June 11
  3. my nephew Jaxon, who turned eight years old on July 24
  4. Jamey, who turned 51 on August 7
  5. my sister Jackie, who turned 27 on August 8
  6. my brother-in-law Craig, and his marriage to my sister Sarah–he turned 34, and they celebrated 11 years on August 9
  7. my sister Kellie, who turned 34 on August 26
  8. access to a swimming pool
  9. the sunlight shining through the forest in the morning
  10. Robert Reich. I’m nerdy enough to have a favorite economist, and he is the one.
  11. Blue jays. They crack me up.
  12. Hansen’s Tonic Water
  13. The film We’re the Millers. Ridiculous. And hilarious.
  14. Sharing Haagen Dazs coffee ice cream with Jamey–he’s informed me that he only shares it because he loves me.
  15. cold watermelon
  16. green chile chicken crepes (my own original recipe)
  17. The new HEB grocery store in Conroe. Good for my pantry, lousy for my wallet (or rather Jamey’s wallet, since mine is perpetually empty these days)
  18. John Oliver. He did a great job with The Daily Show this summer.
  19. Being able to exercise in my air conditioned living room, in front of my giant television, with my iPad. I have a short attention span and a low tolerance for discomfort, so that’s the only way calories are going to be burned.
  20. HBO’s The Newsroom. It’s been panned by journalists across the board, but I love it. I wish the news was actually like it.

bottom 10

Yeah, I lost it all. Every note that I've taken in the last eight months, gone in a flash. BACK UP YOUR iPAD!!!

Yeah, I lost it all. Every note that I’ve taken in the last eight months, gone in a flash. BACK UP YOUR iPADS, PEOPLE!!!

  1. learning the lesson…the hard way…to always back up my iPad to the Cloud
  2. bill collectors
  3. financial limbo
  4. Migraine headaches. I’ve only recently started to get them, and they are the pits.
  5. lack of cupboard space
  6. summer re-runs
  7. chemical weapons in Syria
  8. ignorance
  9. nightmares
  10. politics (and politicians) getting in the way of…pretty much everything
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