#25 has begun…Beads of Courage

March 27, 2011 at 11:20 pm (Bucket List, Somewhat Serious) (, , , , )

Time for another update on my “40 before 40” list…and yet, again, thank God I have over 2 years to get this done. I am moving at a snail’s pace, but I am happily blaming Mother Nature for deciding to extend winter, effectively pissing in my Cheerios and making it impossible to find my motivation. Thanks, Mother Nature. You’re a peach.

Seriously though, one of the most meaningful quests on my list is #25. This item involves me donating 500 beads to Beads of Courage. I encourage you to visit their site, but in a nutshell, BOC has programs providing artisan-made beads to children fighting cancer. When a child faces an event in their treatment when courage is necessary, they are allowed to choose a bead, and add it to their string. When they have beat the disease, and have completed treatment, they are given a purple heart pendant, which is also made from an artisan bead. The program began in Phoenix, AZ, in 2005, and has expanded to hospitals in 34 states, as well as overseas.

Those who know me in real life may, or may not, know that I make handmade glass, or lampwork, beads. I’ve done so for a number of years, mainly as a hobby and form of therapy. To be able to know that what I am creating will help brighten the day of a child with cancer has been so incredibly liberating on the creative front. Nothing but joy infuses these beads.

My first batch of beads for Beads of Courage

I still have a lot of beads to make before I reach my goal. Right now, I am sending in about 25. But I have never had 25 more important beads in my possession.


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#28 is done…hello cherry pie!

March 14, 2011 at 11:36 pm (Bucket List, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

Cherry Pie Goodness

Cherry Pie Goodness fresh out of the oven.

When I first put together my “40 before 40” list, I wondered which number I would cross off first…would it be an altruistic endeavor, such as signing up for the Bone Marrow Registry? Would it be something creative, like signing up for a stained glass class, or finally making some resin jewelry?

Nope. Silly me. Of course it would have to do with food.

But it’s not my fault, since today is Pi Day, and I share a classroom with two other teachers who are always looking for a good excuse to bring in yummy food. So when my one roomie suggested we bring in pies for Pi Day, who was I to rain on the celebratory parade?

#28 on my list was to make a homemade pie. Any kind, just homemade. Now’s probably the good time to mention that I really don’t like baking all that much. Measuring is for sissies, and I prefer to cook without recipes (which has resulted in some very tasty, and some very toxic dishes).  So baking a pie was a pretty big deal for me…seemed like the most imposing type of dessert I could manage.

Yes, I cheated a little bit. I bought a frozen pie crust, because I couldn’t stand the thought of actually breaking out the rolling pin. But the crumb topping I made was such a royal pain in the ass, I feel totally redeemed for the store-bought crust. Another reason I don’t like baking–it tends to be a pain in the ass.

So what did I learn from #28? You shouldn’t let fruit pies tip, not even a little bit…and you definitely shouldn’t try to counteract the effect by tipping it drastically in the other direction. Thank goodness I was on my toes this morning, and was able to avert the near pie destruction. I also learned I really don’t like making pies. I learned that my roomie who suggested “Pie Day” doesn’t like cherry pie. I learned that when you work with teenagers too long, you can’t write the word pie any longer without starting to snicker and thinking of dirty jokes.

And the world is a better place because of my pie.

More Cherry Pie

Cherry Pie. So easy a caveman can do it. Or me.

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Good thing I have 2 1/2 years to tackle this bad boy

January 4, 2011 at 2:40 am (Bucket List, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

Day 3 of the new year, and not one of my 40 items is on the horizon…though I did look at the papayas at the supermarket as a possible fruit never-yet-eaten. And the portabello mushrooms, because you are visiting the blog of the last existing human to have never eaten a portabello mushroom. But then I thought that mushrooms are really a fungus, even though they are in the produce section, so they can’t really serve as a new vegetable…that would be like saying I wanted to try driving a back hoe (which I would do in a heart beat if anyone was every dumb enough to allow me behind the controls in one), but instead I ride around on a tricycle armed with a shovel.

Actually, it’s probably nothing like that, but I am freezing tonight and it’s affecting my brain…like my fingers feel like popsicles. Great, I just looked at my hands, and for a second they looked like old lady hands…thanks for the reminder, hands!

So I am trying to decide what I should tackle first, but I’ll probably just sit here and freeze for a while.

Sorry this blog has no real depth to it…just felt like being a smart ass for a while. It’s my blog. I can do that.

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40 by 40…watch out world!

December 31, 2010 at 12:00 pm (Bucket List, Somewhat Serious) (, , , )

Photo courtesy of Micheletb

I’ve always been a very goal driven person. So a few months back, I complained to my therapist that I felt like I was just floating along because I had no goals. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to be when I grew up. Recently, I realized, duh, that my life is awesomely sweet now, and *that’s* why I don’t have the big goals that people usually set. I’m pretty damn happy, so I don’t feel that dooming sense of dissatisfaction lurking over my life any longer.

But I do like having goals. It forces my somewhat-lazy butt to get in gear and remember to live life *now*. So even though I won’t be 40 for over two more years, I was inspired by another friend to create a list of 40 items I’d like to accomplish by the time I’m 40…some of them will probably take the 2+ years to get there, so think of it as good planning. And I promise to subject you to all the lurid details when I cross one off the list 😉

  1. See the Northern Lights
  2. Climb a rock wall
  3. See the impact crater in Arizona
  4. Run a 5K
  5. Have my picture taken with one of the lions outside the NYPL
  6. Go to the Smithsonian
  7. Have deep dish pizza in Chicago
  8. Eat fish caught that day from the ocean
  9. Visit Ellicottville for the day
  10. Go camping (yep, never been camping for real, Girl Scouts doesn’t count)
  11. Go to the Eternal Flame Falls
  12. Swim in the natural pool at Buttermilk State Park
  13. Take a lampworking class from a well-respected artist
  14. Have a poem published in a print journal
  15. Write a novel-length piece of fiction
  16. Learn to play “Everlong” on the guitar
  17. Buy a pair of Doc Marten boots (preferably the red velvet ones)
  18. Donate platelets
  19. Sign up for the Bone Marrow Registry
  20. Swim with dolphins (preferably not because I got tossed overboard)
  21. Go whale watching again
  22. Find that perfect red lipstick
  23. Have dinner at the Buffalo Chop House
  24. Learn to make stained glass
  25. Donate 500 Beads to Beads of Courage
  26. Visit the Outer Banks again (need a replacement Dirty Dick’s glass!)
  27. Go snorkeling & hopefully see a sea turtle
  28. Make a homemade pie
  29. Make homemade lemonade in the summer
  30. Try 10 new fruits/vegetables I’ve never eaten before
  31. Learn to make stamped metal jewelry
  32. Make some resin jewelry pendants
  33. Go on a ghost hunt
  34. Visit Savannah, GA again
  35. Drink nothing but water for a week
  36. Have a butterfly land on my hand
  37. Take the train somewhere
  38. Learn to make clothes on a sewing machine
  39. Learn basic Calculus
  40. See the Persieds meteor shower

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