Thursday, August 25, 2011


Lately, what's on my mind a lot is Pooh. On September 4, he'll be 3 years old. Though we've only had him for not quite 15 months, that is longer than he's lived with anyone else, and it's pretty clear that P-daddy and I are, in his mind, his true parents. While the idea of adoption never phased us, we were not really sure how the rest of our families would react. But everyone has opened their arms and hearts to him, and he has found a true home and family, not just with us, but with all the rest of our clan as well. Pooh and his Papaw have been forming a special bond (I think it was the tractor that started this, but that's another story).

This pic just makes my heart go warm and fuzzy. Pooh is a great mimic, and I love that he is, in essence, following in my dad's footsteps. Since my dad is one of my most favorite men on the planet, and I think he's incredible, I think it's the perfect place for Pooh to be.

This pic was taken not too long ago, when we headed out for a weekend at my parents' place. Dad walks the perimeter of his property every morning, and since there are snakes and spiders and other wild things, he takes a walking stick, and often wears boots. Pooh, not to be outdone, has to do exactly the same (we took his Elmo boots with us just for this purpose). We try to get out to visit as much as possible now, since when we leave the country, visits will not be nearly as frequent. But we know that the memories of times like these will be cherished by all of us, no matter where in the world we are.

For more pics and heartfelt thoughts, head on over to Down to Earth and check things out over there!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


So there was an earthquake (5.9) on the East Coast yesterday, and according to this article, Californians are being pretty insufferable about it. Having recently moved from California, I've experienced firsthand their insufferability, so that did make me laugh. But it also made me think about the fact that earthquakes and tremors are common in many parts of the world, and El Salvador is likely to be one of them.

Living in Guatemala, we got used to daily small tremors that would shake the lights hanging from the ceilings while everyone continued about their work as normal. At the school that I worked at, the director, new to the area and fearful of natural disasters, attempted to create better emergency procedures, in which students crawled under their desks at the first sign of shaking. Yes, we need to keep the children safe, but after a week in which at least one class was interrupted every day, he realized that perhaps his emergency preparedness was a little too prepared.

That's not to say that there weren't quakes that caused massive amounts of damage. I rented space from a family, and my bedroom was the maid's quarters (no, I was not the maid, I just lived in the space that most homes had been built with), which opened onto the central patio. This family had a dog who would often sleep out on the patio or wander out as needed. Often, he'd end up sleeping, or at least sniffing, at my door. The door to my room was metal, and set into a metal frame, so when he would settle himself against it, it would bang and wake me up. One night, I was awoken by the door hitting the frame continuously. "That ^&*$ dog!" I thought, and got up to yell at him. I opened the door, and no dog, but then I became aware that something had happened. Despite the fact that it was about 2am, I could hear people talking, yelling, and crying in the streets, and about that time, my host mom came out to check on me. We later found out that damages were immense, with many people losing their homes, or parts of their homes.

From what I've been reading, El Salvador also commonly experiences minor tremors as well as the occasional true earthquake. It's just one more thing we'll have to get used to, and prepare for.

Monday, August 22, 2011

De-cluttering, and not by choice

I've talked before about our fostering puppies, and for the most part, we really enjoy it! Today, though, we realized a new advantage (to P-Daddy), and disadvantage (to me).

Today was the first real day back at school, as we had new student orientation. I'm not a dressy dresser, preferring comfort over high fashion, but I did pull out something other than my Crocs or Tevas to wear this morning. After a long day at school, I came home and relaxed by checking email and doing various things on the computer. Then P-Daddy brought me this:

One fewer pair of shoes, thanks to the contribution of foster puppy Elvis.

I love shoes. In my mind, I don't have a lot of them, probably 30-40 pairs. P-Daddy, for some reason, thinks this is a lot. His 5 pairs are plenty, he says. I may disagree on the number, but I realize when I look at my shoe closet (yes, I did say shoe CLOSET) that I'm definitely going to have to get rid of quite a few pairs of my beloved footwear before we can consider packing up and making a run for the border. And it's not just shoes. I have a LOT of STUFF. And I need to sort, donate, recycle, and repurpose things rather than just storing them indefinitely. Whittling down our possessions will make P-Daddy (and me too, I admit) very very happy. Today, I suppose, was the start, like it or not.