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I came across this story online. It makes me melancholy.

Then I learned many schools have done this, including my own state. Has yours?

I get it. There are so many demands on teachers. So many expectations they are required to teach and meet for their students (and themselves) to be considered successful. I can see why cursive handwriting is no longer a focus. Technology is.

But for some reason, it makes me sad.

What will happen to million-dollar autographs, love letters, please sign here, ransom notes ...

Reading, mathematics, and critical thinking do outweigh penmanship skills, but I hate to think of a world without personal marks. Before we write off cursive completely, consider this.

Perhaps handwriting will become an elective - only for students who are succeeding in other courses - or whose parents take the time at home to teach them.

Or like the futuristic Matched series I recently read will it become a lost art? Those who can write will keep it secret?

I guess we're moving into the future. What do you think about handwriting being a thing of the past?


Bucket Update

I was informed my blog is far past due and my Bucket List needs to be updated.
Heaven forbid - I got sidetracked!

Let's see.

It seems to me I have nothing to whine about. 

Cowgirl Boots



Trip with the BFF
Um, hello?
Trip with the BFF?

Okay, so I do have one thing to whine about after all.

Thankfully - 40's not over yet!
Thanks to my bucket fulfilling hubby who has made every completed item on the 40th Bucket List happen.


Raggedy Gal

I've discovered a new hobby and am loving it.  Rag Quilts. I am finally putting my sewing machine to good use.

It began last Christmas when brainstorming homemade gift ideas. I came across a Rag Quilt tutorial and was inspired to give it a try. Now I'm hooked.

I quickly learned after my first trip to buy NEW fabrics that quilting can be a very expensive hobby - heck, one pair of decent scissors cost $24 and I usually work with two cutting pair, and just bought a pair of micro-tip snips today, that's $60 just in scissors!

Add in a cutting wheels, threads, needles, and a self-healing cutting mat, ca-ching! All I could think is I really, really hoped the blanket I was attempting to make actually turned out.

It didn't take long for my thrifty nature to kick in if I wanted to make more than one quilt. I instinctively checked not only the sales and discount racks of fabric, but also the thrift stores. The ones in my area sell bags of scraps as well as rolls of various sized materials - 1-2-3 yards worth for cheap materials - like 50 cents to $2 each!

One of the quilts I made even includes items from my wardrobe... jeans, skirt, and t-shirt! Now that's a personal gift.

With each one I learn a bit more and try something new. The sizes have varied a bit as have the patterns and the colors, but overall the process is the same.

December 2013
Warm & Trendy

January 2014
Patriot Salute

February 2014
Four Favorites

April 2014
Six is Super!

I have a couple more gift requests, one for May and June and somewhere in there I hope to make a couple I can place for sale.

However they come, I'm excited to keep this hobby going. Not only do I love the finished product, but the entire process is very cathartic for me. The planning, the cutting, the layout process, the hum of the sewing machine, snip-snip-snip. I'm in my own little world (usually late at night), the house is quiet, and I just sew, sew, sew.

I've heard they actually do a great job keeping people warm, as well as are appreciated. So who knows, perhaps Raggedy Gal Blankets can be a profitable hobby too.


Bucket Bustin

This is the year. My 40th year. 
I've got all the way until December to finish out my 30s 
then I'll enter the greatest decade of my life, right?

Now, I'm not one to get freaked out about birthdays. 
In fact, I actually like my birthday.
 30 came and went, 35 no biggie. Now, here comes 40.  
There's nothing I can do about it, so might as well go gracefully. 
No lying, no hiding, just laying it out there. 40. 

Honestly though, there are a couple things
that make me fuss about aging.

I'm getting wrinkly! My hands, my eyes. 

Really the only other thing causing me fuss about getting older 
is being called ma'am. I know it's a sign of respect and when it comes from teenagers and young kids it works for me. But yesterday at the grocery store an older lady - at least 70 - 
said to me, 
"Excuse me ma'am."  
I literally turned around and looked behind me 
to see if she was speaking to someone else. 
I was the ma'am. Me! 

My wrinkly ma'am grumblings aside, 
there are things I am definitely looking 
forward to in this next decade.

My children are now each able to clean their own bottoms. 
I get giddy thinking of all the minutes I'll get back in the next 
decade that were lost to butt cleanings during my 30s!
But then again, I might just reallocate those minutes
towards reminders about flushing what they've just wiped.

Most of all I'm looking forward to kicking off 
this new decade with my 40th Bucket List items. 

1. Get a tattoo.
2. Buy an awesome pair of cowgirl boots.
3. Ride a Zipline.
4. Take a trip with my BFF.

I'm happy to say as of yesterday #1 is done! 
Check! Onto the next.


But Chad

I was reading my mom's blog today and she donned a beautiful pearl necklace she had found at Macy's for a shocker steal of $29 buckaroos. Her inspiration had been Kate Spade.

My bestie was at the mall this morning and sent me this fun photo. Her comment was if it wasn't for the $200 price tag she'd have bought it for me.



Off I went to my favorite local shop - amazon.com - to see what I could find that might satisfy my want and bargain desires.  I found this. By Kate Spade.

Better price - only $35.99. But alas, I don't have a fancy phone like that.

Keep looking.

Further searches left me finding the same bag my bestie had donned earlier in the day, by Kate Spade, and yet the lowest price was $148.00.



Oh, and Happy Birthday to my Hubby. I guess if I can't have that bag, at least I have my very own But Chad.


love, anthony

I picked up my latest read for two reasons, the title of course hit a soft spot thanks to my own little man, and the author. I have read Lisa Genova's other two books and enjoyed them both. She tackles current neurological issues and puts a human voice to them.

Still Alice
Left Neglected

Although those two books were great reads and had beautiful insight  Alsheimers and Hemispatial Neglect, her newest book, "love, anthony" actually had me in tears.

Love Anthony

It's a story about two women, autism, and unconditional love. It opened my eyes and my heart for families struggling with this condition, for moms - all moms who just want to know their children feel loved, and best of all it reminded me ever so simply why we're each here.

Here's an official review of the book by usa today - don't just take my word for it.


Arsenic & Old Lace

Finally the lace is down. Three years later and I can't take it any more.

 (The brass is gone, the white walls are gone, only the lace remains.)

I don't know if it's because like the old film insanity runs in my family, or if lace on windows just makes me crazy. Either way, it was time for it to go.

Now for the last few days I've hated the bare windows, but it was the only way I could kick myself in the butt to actually make a change. Since I've yet to tackle the ceiling drama, I'm choosing to focus on something much easier. Or so I thought.

Valances, cafe curtains, blinds, shades, swags... now I'm faced with the cereal aisle in options for window coverings. I start these projects knowing what I want and then become overwhelmed with too many choices and end up stalling. With me one thing always leads to the next. Taking down the lace has led me to replace the playroom light fixture, and shop for a new bathroom curtain and vanity fixtures. I've actually started thinking about a new dining table.

Back to the lace.

One wall is beige. Two walls are wine. The floor is white tile. (Rug not an option.) Our dining room windows face east, sliding door south. We get a bunch of sun in this room every day. In fact, Hubby and I have considered moving the table out of the space and putting in a couple chairs to make it our own little sun-sitting room. The kids wouldn't mind eating on the floor every night, would they?

Right after we moved in (too much white, too much brass... too much lace.)

So chime in, what would be your liking? I like the thought of cafe curtains to give us more privacy, but I hate to cover up all that sunlight, especially this time of year when we soak up all we can get. I've found a couple valances but then wonder if I'll be disappointed.

So, how to link arsenic into this post? To my knowledge there isn't any need for that in my latest decorating dilemma. But speaking of poison, here's an interesting and bummer of a story about cyanide.