Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Performative Wokeness

(get this awesome shirt HERE)

I am ever so hopeful that humanity will collectively get tired of calling each other out on social media for whatever it is they disagree with (and then making it "news"), but sadly, this week it appears we are no where close. For once I am grateful for my 5 decades, because when I grew up and said stupid stuff or shared an immature opinion about something, I was allowed to evolve. Without it becoming something viral, or something that was found in a past post and rehashed adnauseam, or was used by people I don't know to troll someone else (That's not sacrifice, this is sacrifice, 'cause I know sacrifice. Ugh.)

Noted author (and recent twitter find) Roxane Gay has a good term for it - performative wokeness. Genius. 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Love the Take That 'Tude

The most incredible example of a super mom, Serena Williams, was in the news lately because the French Tennis Federation chief said in an interview, "I believe we have sometimes gone too far. Serena's outfit this year, for example, would no longer be accepted." The outfit she wore at the French Open, pictured above, was designed not only to make a fashion statement, but also had a practical function: providing compression support for a new mom who was putting her body through a serious physical challenge. 

The response from her sponsor was awesome:

You can take the superhero out of her costume, but you can never take away her superpowers. #justdoit

The response from Serena herself at the US Open was the awesomest display of sticking it to "the man." Think my cat suit wasn't girly enough? Okay, how about a tutu? 

Love, love, love!

Monday, August 27, 2018

No Tears, What's Up With That?

My daughter was off to college last week, as were many of her friends. When I cross paths with their parents or really just about anyone who knows she's starting college, the inevitable question is, "How are you doing? How much did you cry?"

My feed is full of "how the survive the college drop off" type articles (they are replacing the "top 22 things every dorm room needs" articles of last month.) I saw this one today - 50 steps - really?

I am partly exasperated and partly secretly worried that I am the worst mom ever - I didn't shed a tear taking her to school. Am I some kind of monster? Moms weeping as their children leave the nest is a perfectly reasonable response. I remember vividly a very tearful phone call with my own mom as I got ready to board my plane for my deployment to Iraq (I was 40 years old, and we both were puddles :-)).

Of course I miss her, of course my brain is overflowing with a zillion worries that range from all the dangers lurking out there in the real world to "is she happy?" She is a super independent girl, so much so for most of her senior year in high school we not-so-jokingly called her, "The Tenant." Thinking back, I was more sad summer before last, when she went on an extended overseas trip with the high school band and got her driver's license (I even wrote about it at the time, here). I realize now that her nest leaving started long before last week. 

So no, I am not a puddle of tears right now. I suppose they are lurking out there somewhere. But I am also so dang excited to see her fly right out of our nest a bit further and see how she flies.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Adventure is Out There!

Characteristically, our summer has been bananas, but not without adventures. If you've done any reading of my blog, you know I loooooove to travel, and the adventure for me starts with figuring out the details and doing the advance planning. I have two friends that do this professionally and awesomely (and I highly recommend them: Paige at All Over the Map and Vero at Pax Travel Design) but when my daughter and I decided to go see Machu Picchu, I wanted to figure it on my own.

We can fly "kind of" free on the airlines because of my husband's job, but you fly with the lowest stand by priority and take a chance of not getting there if the flights are full. Since tickets into Machu Picchu and the train to get there are issued for a specific date, we decided to buy our airline tickets. I found the best price and schedule for us through CheapTickets. I had to play around with it a bit to get the right combo of price and schedule, but everything worked as advertised. We did not fly US based air carriers, but I did some quick internet research to make sure they were solid and reputable fliers.  

Both airlines we flew (Latam and Copa) had apps so we were able to easily check in, get boarding passes and select seats. Since we were just taking carry on luggage (at least until the bags became too stuffed with souvenirs) this saved us a lot of line standing in airports. 

For lodging, I started with AirBnB. We found amazing places that felt a part of history in Cuzco and with a view of the Pacific for our last night in Lima. It also doesn't hurt to book direct, which I did for the place we stayed in Aguas Calientas (jumping off point for Machu Picchu), the awesomely named Gringo Bills. No travel site had a better price anyway, and since this was the entire goal of our trip, paying a little more for a nice place was worth it.

I could book tickets for Machu Picchu and PeruRail online, although the Machu Picchu ticket web site is challenging (this helpful blog was a life saver). A completely coincidental article on travel to Peru in the Washington Post connected me with a climbing/zip line adventure that was wonderful, and also booked online. 

Neither of us speak Spanish (although my recent high school grad remembered enough vocab to translate a little), and we got along fine. Everyone we crossed paths with were helpful (Uber in Peru? Who knew!) We felt safe wherever we traveled and I would 100% go back. 

(we got kinda obsessed with the local wildlife)

One last helpful tip my husband told me about before we left - the Mobile Passport app from US Customs. Instead of filling out the form and using the goofy entry machines, you plug your info into the app and we breezed through with the Global Entry folks. Awesome!

p.s. - I am not a paid endorser of any of the above, not even the llamas :-)

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

I know, right?

While I get my self back in the game after some great time off enjoy this piece of truth. More soon!

A post shared by George Takei (@georgehtakei) on

Thursday, July 26, 2018