Saturday, December 15, 2012

Hugging them a little bit tighter

Working with kids, sometimes I get the random hug.  They want to feel connected and loved and express their apprecation of whatever we are doing.  Sometimes its a hug from one of the kids who takes my Lego classes, other times, one of my teens will randomly get excited and hug.  I always give them the one arm, side hug that lasts only for a few seconds.  Don't want someone thinking that the hug I give back means something a little more.

Yesterday was a little different.  I got three hugs, and while I still did the side arm hug, I did squeeze a little more.  I gave it a few more seconds, held on a little bit tighter.  Because what if.  Newtown isn't that much different from any other town in the northeast.  Sandy Hook Elementary isnt that much different than my elementary school, or any of the other schools in my area.  They were getting ready for holiday break; teachers finishing up lessons, making holiday crafts, teaching songs, decorating the class rooms.  These could have easily been my kids.  They could have come to my classes or my programs, they could be the younger siblings of my teens.  It breaks my heart.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I've never been more hopeful about our future

"And tonight, despite all the hardship we’ve been through, despite all the frustrations of Washington, I’ve never been more hopeful about our future.

I have never been more hopeful about America. And I ask you to sustain that hope. I’m not talking about blind optimism, the kind of hope that just ignores the enormity of the tasks ahead or the roadblocks that stand in our path. I’m not talking about the wishful idealism that allows us to just sit on the sidelines or shirk from a fight.
I have always believed that hope is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us so long as we have the courage to keep reaching, to keep working, to keep fighting.
America, I believe we can build on the progress we’ve made and continue to fight for new jobs and new opportunity and new security for the middle class. I believe we can keep the promise of our founders, the idea that if you’re willing to work hard, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from or what you look like or where you love. It doesn’t matter whether you’re black or white or Hispanic or Asian or Native American or young or old or rich or poor, able, disabled, gay or straight, you can make it here in America if you’re willing to try.

I believe we can seize this future together because we are not as divided as our politics suggests. We’re not as cynical as the pundits believe. We are greater than the sum of our individual ambitions, and we remain more than a collection of red states and blue states. We are and forever will be the United States of America."

- President Barack Obama
November 6, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Sandy Blows

8 days ago I shut off my computer here at work, turned out all the lights in the teen center & locked the doors.  I had no idea it would be 8 days before I was able to sit down and actually get work done again.  All in all, my family has survived the hurricaine.  My parents house (last year's storm was a disaster) is still without power, but this year at least, we had fewer leaves and no snow! 

Once of the biggest problems is that there is no gas.  Which is a wierd concept, considering that there is practically a gas station on every corner in these towns.  But they are empty.  Or they dont have power so the pumps are off.  We have a gas rationing system that no one seems to understand (I've heard like 6 explenations of the licence plate rules, all contradicting each other).  I retreated up to PA for the weekend, so I filled up before I left, and brought back 10 gallons of gas for my dad.  There are also, unfortunatly, people taking advantage of this fact, and price gouging like you woulding believe (200% increase overnight for  Unfortunatly, with the disaster affecting SO much of the state, most of the attention has (rightly) gone to the ravaged shore.  Its a good learning expereince for the northern counties, how to carpool, plan trips, ride your bike etc.  My co-worker and I set a good example by walking to DD for lunch, and I think we are going to make a thing of it from now on.  We drive way too much (I promise I dont usually drive to work unless I am leaving from work to go somewhere that requires a car.  I live about 100 yards from the building...)

If you are looking to help out NY & NJ, I recommend donating to the American Red Cross.  We are going to start a food and clothing drive here, so send me a message if you would like to contribute to that :)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

A Permanent Solution to a Temporary Problem

I don't miss anyone more than I miss him.  Rest Easy, Pete

 I've seen fire and I've seen rain
I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I'd see you again
-- James Taylor

If you or a friend are struggling, say something to someone.  Here is a great resource for those suffering from depression & thinking about taking their own life. HopeLine 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Super Nerd

For those of you who know me in real life, you probably have realized that I have an extremely nerdy side.  I like science, dinosaurs, post-apocolyptic survival, an recently have developed a new and ULTRA-GEEKY obsession...


Man, its geeky.  But its fun.  Its all about friendship - the Doctor is a space & time traveling Time Lord (nearly immortal humanoid with 2 hearts and a British accent).  He travels in a TARDIS (his is broken and always looks like a blue police call box).  He has some companions with him (usually cute girls, although currently he has a young married couple who are adorable). And they travel space and time solving problems, fighting really weird alliens and saving the Earth (over and over again!). 

The show is very clever.  The companions can be dropped off back home, (or get lost in an alternate universe - sorry Rose Tyler!) and then the doctor picks up new ones (or they can search for him and then fall in love with his doppelganger - Rose Tyler!!).  The Doctor himself is "nearly immortal" meaning that if he is mortally wounded (aka absorbs a bunch of atomic energy or something silly) he can regenerate and a new actor takes over.  Currently they are on Doctor #11 (the series started in the 60s). 

Photo Credit - what a great artist!
Anyway, I'm obsessed with the show.  Its on Netflix... you should watch it.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Confessions of an almost 30 year old

 "What's wrong with your face?" Oh the innocent questions of a second grade boy... No I was not mauled by a bear nor did I have any especially large pimples protruding from my forehead... I was wearing makeup. Obviously by my student's reaction, you can conclude that I don't wear it very often. I was assured by my coworkers that I did look nice, but the boys were CONVINCED that my sudden cover girl impersonation was because "I had a date". Oh ok, when was that date fellas? At 11 am? Or I was "on a date", which was weirder because I was in a classroom of 9 K-3 boys and a giant bin of Legos. Nope guys, we are not on a date all together.

 I actually didn't start really wearing makeup until this year. As a kid I was not forbidden to wear it, I just was always in a pool or lake and it seemed like more trouble than it was worth.

 Not me, but how I picture I look in makeup...
photo credit

I pictured tubes, brushes, compacts, and movie scenes where the female lead is either crying or caught in a downpour (or both) and her eyeliner and mascara have run down her face and she resembles a raccoon. I read Cosmo Girl and Seventeen magazines faithfully with my friends, taking surveys to see what kind of kisser I was, ogling heart-throbs and gleaning makeup tips from the glossy pages. But I never really bought makeup until a few years ago, and that was reserved for times when I wore dresses (so basically never). This year, I am attempting to look like I am somewhat professional (I do teach Lego classes and play video games for a large chunk of my day, so maybe professional isn't quite the right word)... I think maybe it's just mature or in charge or not in high school... I get asked a lot if I have chosen a college yet (yes, did that in 2001).

Me at work... obviously.

 Me in make-up.  And I would like to say that the dress I am wearing in this photo is now WAY to big on me!  :)

Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles!

Yesterday I went and picked up my brother's turtles and goldfish from his school - they are now the newest residents of 60 Keep Street!  The turtles are both young red-eared sliders, and the fish is a BIG ASS GOLDFISH.  Seriously, he's a big mamba-jamba.  Currently they are named "Leopard" for her/his spotted belly, "Harry Potter" the gold fish, and "Kelly"... because my brother's students are the worst pet namers ever.  So I am looking for another name for the second turtle.

I am thinking Leopard and Tiberius, or Leo & Tibs for short.  I am a little paranoid that Leopard is super stressed from the move.  She/he is very skiddish, whereas Tibs/Kelly will just eye me suspiciously when I get near the tank.  Neither have been basking yet, and they should be spending a lot of time in the light, so hopefully they just need to relax from the trip.  
Harry Potter is just fine.  Symon, resident fat ketteh, could care less that there are new friends in the house, and instead woke me up at 5:45 this morning for snacks.  SYMON ITS SATURDAY!

Friday, April 27, 2012


That good thing I had going for a while... well this song pretty much sums up how it ended.

Now and then I think of when we were together
Like when you said you felt so happy you could die
Told myself that you were right for me
But felt so lonely in your company
But that was love and it's an ache I still remember

You can get addicted to a certain kind of sadness
Like resignation to the end, always the end
So when we found that we could not make sense
Well you said that we would still be friends
But I'll admit that I was glad that it was over

But you didn't have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don't even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough

No you didn't have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don't need that though
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

Now you're just somebody that I used to know
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over
But had me believing it was always something that I'd done
And I don't wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
You said that you could let it go
And I wouldn't catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know

But you didn't have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don't even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough

And you didn't have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don't need that though
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

(I used to know)
(Now you're just somebody that I used to know)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Location, Location, Location

Location, Location, Location

I could have kissed you
under cherry blossoms,
pale petals drifting down
like the trees wanted to
pretend they could be
I could have kissed you
in the rain, drenched to
our bones and not even
caring that the skies
opened up above us
and tried to wash us out.
I could have kissed you
in a clearing in the most
secluded woods, with
just the sound of wind
rustling through the leaves
and a few voyeuristic
finches peeping at us.
Instead, I kissed you
in the parking lot of a
Waffle House, just shy
of 2 a.m. in the middle
of a hectic week, with
our waitress grinning
at us from the other
side of the window,
because, honestly,
how could I not?
This poem © Gabriel Gadfly. Published May 11, 2011

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Jockey Hollow, NJ 1/1/12

Today, I convinced my friend Vivian to put on her New Years Eve gown and wander around an orchard and woods in Jockey Hollow, NJ.  I am trying out a new lens (Canon 50MM) and I needed a willing subject.  Vivian was a good sport (I did not include the photos of her scowling at me, or laughing at me haha).  Hopefully I can find some other victims subjects since Vivian is headed back to Nashville next week :(

All images featured on this blog are the property of Emily Galbraith.  
Any use without permission will be considered copyright violation, and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  Have a nice day!!