20100831

Famous Last Words - Song.a.Day

Sisters and I in Avalon, NJ, July 2007
(Note my poor distended abdomen due to undiagnosed celiac disease.)
Sitting here in Avalon
Looking at the pouring rain
Summertime has come and gone
And everybody's home again
Closin' down for the season
I found the last of the souvenirs
I can still taste the wedding cake
And it's sweet after all these years...

...Comfort in my coffee cup
Apples in the early fall
They're pulling all the moorings up
And gathering at the legion hall
Swept away all the streamers
After the Labor Day parade
Nothing left for a dreamer now
Only one final serenade...

...Stack the chairs on the table tops
Hang the sheets on the chandeliers
It slows down but it never stops
Ain't it sweet after all these years

And these are the last words I have to say
It's always hard to say goodbye
But now it's time to put this book away
And that's the story of my life....



This is the last Song.a.Day for the summer! It's been fun to share some music, hopefully the blogosphere enjoyed it!

This song reminds me of a lot of transitions in my life, from moving from Utah to Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania to Utah, and Utah to California. Saying goodbye to some people, saying hello to others. New school years and crisp autumn evenings.

I had the pleasure of visiting Avalon during my last week living on the east coast. My sisters, mom, and I booked a room in a charming seaside hotel and spent days collecting shells, playing in the water, and walking around the lovely town. It was the calm before the storm. When we arrived back home, we started packing up all of our things. Again. Within a week, we were on the road. Life as I knew it was over. Greener pastures were ahead -- though I didn't know it.

Well, the rest is history.

Now I wonder if I'll ever return to Avalon.

Jammin' Salmon, Golden Glimmer, Luminous Lavender


Truth be told, I would love to meet someone who names colors of things. Jammin' Salmon?

Brilliant.

I suppose I should stay on topic, but I'm not going to.

Today was a little crazy and certainly hectic. Stats, opportunity, meeting new people, working on getting my residency changed to True Blue Californian (*cough* in-state tuition), and dinner with a friend.

Stats. I've really liked working at the FRoG this summer and I'm getting sad that there are only 5 days left. I love the quiet of the office and a problem facing me. I hate when SAS tells me that there's an error with my syntax and I can't figure out it. But I love it even more when I do figure it out.

Opportunity and new people. My wonderful neighbor told me about an opportunity to be a writer for Davis Life Magazine. It's a really neat e-publication. So, armed with two of my blog posts, I went to meet with the editor. It sounded really, really cool and I wanted to do it. But then the thesis, the PhD applications, the part-time (20 hours/week) research job, coursework, and fellowship application filled my mind. I talked with a few people about it and they seemed to agree with my fear... not enough time.

I sat down to read emails and the editor had sent me critiques and helpful feedback on my posts. But I didn't like it. I enjoy and need critiques of my academic writing. The academic part of me is somewhat removed from my core. But this blog is what it is, a public journal. It's random and quirky and completely lacks focus. That's only because the rest of my life is spent conforming, focusing, and narrowing.

So, in light of the time constraints, I've decided to make sure I post on this blog every-so-often and truly use my unstructured time doing unstructured things. My neighbor and her friends are going to do an excellent job with the magazine though! I can't wait to read it!

California Residency. They don't just give this to anybody. They sure make you work for it! But well worth it, well worth it. After my 3 AM panic attack about thinking the petition was due July 1, it seems easy.

Dinner. Amazing neighbor, Sarah, and I went to KetMoRee (I'm becoming quite predictable) for dinner and then to the Davis Creamery (not associated with UCD) for ice cream. Delicious avocado and coconut ice cream! It was nice to catch up with a friend. We talked about the battles we and those around us are fighting.

And now I need to get grading. These papers are not going to grade themselves!

Thanks for reading, Dear Blogosphere.

20100830

Meet Me in California - Song.a.Day


...Meet me in California
I'll be there waiting for your call
I'll be there waiting for you
'Cause you know, in California
There's something better for us all...

Good song. I hadn't listen to anything by the Plain White T's until this song. I looove the chorus!

California Fun Fact!
There are 278 state parks and beaches and 18 national forests in California.
Naturalist John Muir and President Teddy Roosevelt at Yosemite

Feels like fall... - Photo.a.Day

Trexler Park - 2006
Home - 2007
Mount Olympus - 2007
The past few days here have felt a little autumn-y. Which is a nice break from the scorching hot temperatures we've been experiencing. I'm looking forward to fall. For the leaves to turn, pumpkin lattes to show up in coffee houses, talk of Halloween costumes to begin, and squashes and other delicious fall vegetables to appear at the farmer's market.

The leaves don't change here until November, which feels strange. Unlike Utah or Pennsylvania. And there isn't much Halloween decoration about... quite sad, really. But I suppose that's what happens when you live "downtown" in a college town. And I won't be seeing that glorious sight in the third photograph this year. Quite remarkable how quickly the seasons change.

20100829

Stop in Nevada - Song.a.Day


He always found it hard to take her
She wouldn't listen to advice
And though he never tried to make her
She often thought it would be nice

Oh, and now she's headin' out to California
It's been a long time comin'
But she's feeling like a woman tonight
And she left a little letter
Said she's gonna make a stop in Nevada

Goodbye, goodbye

She tried for years to be a good wife
It never quite got off the ground
And all those stories of the good life
Convinced her not to hang around

Oh, and now she's headin' out to California
And she doesn't know what's coming
But she sure knows what she's leaving behind
And she left a little letter
Said she's gonna make a stop in Nevada

Goodbye, goodbye

And though she finds it hard to leave him
She knows it would be worse to stay
He wouldn't understand the reasons
That make a woman run away

Oh, and now she's headin' out to California
With some money in her pocket,
She's a rockin' on the 4th of July
And she left a little letter
Said she's gonna make a stop in Nevada

Goodbye, goodbye.

One of my favorite songs for sure. So empowering. It really speaks for itself!

California Fun Fact!
Our State Bird is the beautiful California Valley Quail!
Quails have always been my favorite bird. I love how they are so family-oriented. And charming! Well, I have to say that I love red cardinals. Indeed, red cardinals and fireflies are the only redeeming qualities of the east coast. Just kidding!
I have to toss in here a...
Utah Fun Fact!
Utah's State Bird is the California Seagull, who saved the crops one year by eating the locusts! Yum!

20100828

Candles + Crown of Thorns - Photo.a.Day

Last night I lit some candles. I love to just simply watch them flicker.
The cracked glass makes the most interesting shadows.
A little more abstract:
Today I slept in. Then grabbed lunch downtown. It was overcast and cool, perfect for people watching on E Street. I walked to the bank to get quarters (laundry day!) and then to Nestware, a small boutique with fun home decor, office supplies, jewelry, and gifts. They had a Mini Diana camera that looked so appealing.
I then walked to Ace Homeware to do some research on mandolines and irons. Nothing very appealing. Then to Ace Hardware and into their garden. I've been looking for a low maintenance plant to keep in my window. I found her!
She has the most wonderful thorns, too.
Now it's time to do laundry and start grading again. Happy Saturday!

California (The Kooks) - Song.a.Day


Don't you know, baby, I'm a leading man
I dig down deep when I say I love you
Well, I can hold my own with the best of them
I guarantee you, you'll never see nothin'
Nothin' like this again

California, say that you love me
From all the darkness I couldn't break through
 Now I miss the ocean when I go to sleep
Oh man, it's gonna break my heart

Don't you know that I did the things I did
I rubbed your back while you were sleeping
But all along, baby, it was understood
That you were leaving, absolutely,
The very first day we met

California say that you miss me
From all the darkness I couldn't break through
I'm gonna miss you...

Such a tragic song. Leaving California always breaks my heart. :-(

California fun fact!
More immigrants settle in California than any other state!
Angel Island

20100827

105 Papers! 2 Weeks! Let's Do This Thing! Hit It! - Photo.a.Day

Picture is intentionally blurry. Sorry, folks!
I have two weeks to read and grade 105 papers! Wahoo! They typically average about 7 pages, so that's only 735 pages. Two weeks? No problem. Right... right.

Whenever I have a big task at hand, I think of this scene in Ratatouille:


Let's do this thing!!

And this scene in The Blues Brothers:


Hit it!

Heels Over Head - Song.a.Day


I got your runaway smile in my piggybank baby
Gonna cash it right in for a new Mercedes
You were worth the hundred thousand miles
But you couldn't stay awhile

I got your little brown shirt in my bottom drawer baby
And your little white socks in the top drawer
You were always leaving your shit around
And gone without a sound

Yeah I'm the first to fall and the last to know
Where'd you go?

Now I'm heels over head
I'm hangin' upside down
Thinking how you left me for dead
California-bound

I got a first class ticket to a night all alone
And a front row seat up right by the phone
Cause you're always on my mind
And I'm running out of time

I've got your hair on my pillow and your smell on my sheets
And it makes me think about you with the sand in your feet
Is it all you thought it'd be?
You mean everything to me

But I'm the first to fall and the last to know
Where'd you go?

Now I'm heels over head,
I'm hangin' upside down
Thinking how you left me for dead
California-bound

And when you hit the coast
I hope you think of me
And how I'm stuck here with the ghost of what we used to be....


I loooooooove this song. Gets stuck in my head all the time. Excellent.


California Fun Fact!
Our State tree is, of course, the California Redwood!

20100826

19th Amendment - Photo.a.Day

Alice Paul toasting (with grape juice)
the passage of the 19th Amendment
August 26, 1920
www.alicepaul.org
Today marks the 90th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment. It blows my mind that it was only 90 years ago.

While today is a celebration, it's also a reminder of how far we have to go to have liberty and justice for all. Women still are not equal, in the government's or society's eyes (ERA, anyone?). Minorities of various types are still fighting for civil rights. If you have time, I highly suggest you read some of the anti-suffragist material from that era. Have things really changed? The arguments certainly haven't changed much.

But today I am so grateful for the women and men who worked so hard and never gave up to give women a voice in politics and, more slowly, other social spheres (e.g., in education and organized religion).

If you need a movie to watch tonight, I highly recommend Iron Jawed Angels. If you have young children, pop in Mary Poppins and pause to discuss what the children's mother was fighting for. Or, like me, sip a glass of grape juice and read up on the political candidates running for office this November.

California (TP & the HBs) - Song.a.Day


California's been good to me
Hope it don't fall into the sea
Sometimes you got to trust yourself
It ain't like anywhere else
It ain't like anywhere else....

Sorry friends, but you'll have to look this well-written song up on your own. It's got some great harmonica as an extra bonus!

California Fun Fact!
California's Gross State Product is $1.8 trillion! The largest in the U.S. 
Californians are responsible for 13% of the GDP.

20100825

Waiting for the bus - Photo.a.Day


Q: How sweet is this application (UCD Mobile)?
A: Pretty darn sweet!

The red pins are stops, the blue dot is me, and the little bus is... you guessed it, the bus.

So far today has been very nice. Bus fare was free (save the air!) and I worked on a new project at the FRoG this morning. Now I am home about to make a simple lunch (toast, tomato, carrots) and work on the survey and then the thesis.

It's so nice to be home before the temp gets over 100*F. (We are currently at 99!) This weekend, the temperature will drop to the upper-70s. I'm thinking about doing a day trip via train to Sacramento to go to the California State Railroad Museum and people watch.

What are your plans for the weekend?

California Sun - Song.a.Day


Well, I'm going out west where I belong
Where the days are short and the nights are long!

Loooove the organ. And the Ramones version is excellent too!

California Fun Fact!
Our State colors are Blue and Gold! And just if you were wondering, UC Davis' colors are Aggie Blue and Gold. :-)

20100824

Bedtime - Photo.a.Day

Been a long day with a lot of chaos and a headache. The highlight was watching Jersey Shore with Stephanie. The lowlight was the chaos. I don't much care for uncertainty.
I just want to climb into bed. So that's what I'm doing. Sleep now, work later. I'll be able to tackle everything when it's a new day.
Going to bed before midnight... haven't done this in years.

California (Lenny Kravitz) - Song.a.Day

I was converted to the other side
From the day I'd gotten there
I met a girl who took me on a ride
I was young, I had no cares
When I moved to California
California... 

I miss the Apple and my schoolyard boys
Nothing ever will compare
But now I skateboard
With my surfer girl
And we really are a pair 

When I moved to California
California
California
California love!
Must. Find. California. Boy.
California Fun Fact!
Our State Flower is the Golden Poppy:

20100823

Saxy Post - Photo.a.Day

Nothing remotely interesting happened today. I've been grading and working on my thesis. I watched one episode of Reno 911 and the finale of Design Star (woot, Emily won!). No real opportunities for photographing. So above's an oldie. I've been missing Tiffany, my alto sax, lately. I think it's because I (1) need more creative outlets and (2) have been listening to a lot more jazz than usual in the past few days. Perhaps I'll bring her and Roberta (my gorgeous soprano) back with me after my trip home. Find a practice room and make some sweet, sweet music.
P.S. It's going to be 105*F here tomorrow! I've got my Otter Pops ready to go!

Sausalito - Song.a.Day


Finishing out the Summer of Songs with some about my favorite state. Yep, you guessed it! California.
I love this summery song:

Hair blowin' in the hot wind
Time hanging from a clothes pin
There's no sorrow that the sun's not gonna help
Smell the leather of your new car
Drive through the desert after nightfall
Sleep on the shoulder
Keep the stars all to ourselves...

We should move to Sausalito
Livin's easy on a houseboat
Let the ocean rock us back and forth to sleep
In the morning when the sun rise 
Look in the water, see the blue sky
As if heaven has been laid there at our feet....


California Fun Fact!
California is the most populous state in the US. There are almost 37 million Californians! 

20100822