Trying a new medication--Lyrica--to block the pain. Some unsettling side effects, such as also blocking other sensations, leading to more clumsiness than usual. If you have information or advice regarding Lyrica, I'd sure like to know. I don't trust meds that discombobulate.
I won't delete FOP. Too much content, good or bad, to throw away. And, I can refer back to posts that are relevant in my new blog.
Come visit and let me know what you think!
at 2:12 PM
2011 Music for the Soul Gala with Blues Traveler to benefit Kids In a New Groove
Why do I think this?
- Texas ranks 50th of 50 in funding for foster care.
- Texas also ranks dead last in education.
- Texas ranks first in deaths due to child abuse.
- Some children in the Texas system are in up to 20 single-family foster homes.
- Many children are in residential treatment centers/group homes until age 16.
- 70% of the U.S. prison population has been in foster care.
- Many kids in foster care age out and end up pregnant or on welfare.
Reports indicate that less than two percent of foster youth will graduate from college and up to 50% will end up homeless within two years of emancipation. (From the KING Gala press release)Whether these facts are related or not, I can only venture an observation that the system is freaking broken and these kids need every shred of hope they can get. I can't think of a better way to make a positive difference on every aspect of these youngsters' lives than to get involved with this program.
Now for the Fun Part!
Want more awesome Proof is in the Pudding goodness?
Joshua is a fantastic young man. When I first met him, he was a little shy and was not extremely confident about his musical abilities in piano and voice. In the last year, I have seen him grow not only in his music career, but also in his schoolwork. He is improving greatly in both piano and voice and has learned to play the violin proficiently! He has pulled his grades up significantly as well.This year, so far, he has all A and B grades!! He is driven in his music and is looking forward to studying music in college. I am very proud of him!!
This is the "Ways You Can Help" part
- Attend the 2011 Music For the Soul Gala concert with Blues Traveler!
- Donate $$, time, blog posts, instruments, musical instruction, in-kind services…
- Let all your friends know
- Think of ways you can partner for concerts, etc.
- Comp tickets for the KING kids for your concerts, shows, etc.
- Collaborate with other kids' groups
- Include info in newsletters
- Spread the word about KING
The Really Awesome Bottom Line...
KING is making a difference. And you can help.
Alternately, Kids in a New Groove offers a decidedly more promising path by providing private music lessons to youth in foster care. All of their most recent high school graduates went on to college this fall, demonstrating that they are truly making a difference. The November fundraiser will allow them to sustain and extend their programs throughout the state.
Kids in a New Groove’s unique music mentoring programs have a proven track record of helping these youth improve grades, behavior, and overall life skills. Lessons become a lifeline as teachers move with foster youth between placements, giving these youth a chance to trust and develop lasting relationships. (From the Gala press release)All photos courtesy Kids in a New Groove
Oh. Wow. Steve Jobs.
He is stardust. He changed the world. And right now, everyone is thinking about how he changed their life. I certainly am.
More than that, I'm sure I'm not the only one who got that lightning jolt reminder of our own mortality. How am I grokking life through the gifts this man gave us? Am I making this world a better place for anyone?
Jobs gave me 21st century tools to help me explore my dreams. I have the capacity to create anything. That is freaking awesome.
Personally, I think he should get the Nobel Peace Prize for hooking us all up.
This man put a phenomenal tool in the hands of my 18 month old grand niece. She gets it. She's learning crazy amounts of stuff on it. It's no big deal to her. She's busy living a creative little life way beyond mere gadgets. (Disclaimer: both parents work for Apple and wisely supervise her use.) At the other end of the scale, it's more and more common to see folks much older than I wailing away on iDevices. Communication tools. That can be used for the common good.
I have a modest history with Apple. I was around in the mid-80's when Apple installed the first computer lab on campus at UT. My first office Mac was a sweet little '88 model with which I administered Princeton Pro Musica while in Jersey. I finally got my very own Mac in '94 Australia. Poured the paradoxical two-year long death throes of a marriage while living in paradise into that tiny box.
Periodically updated Macs were with me through my last, lengthy university career. Tons of writing, editing, photography, Web and information design, learning, teaching. A happy discovery--Apple's education folks are super cool, supportive, and quite generous to educators. Many thanks to those good people.
At long last, I have my dream Macbook Pro, thanks to a righteous parting gift from my (Much Better) Ex, along with the university employee discount. Steve Jobs made it possible for me to have crazy fun banging away at turning decades of dreams into something good for the planet, I hope...while there's still time.
Bon voyage, Steve.
Whoa. What a year. The I Ching told me it furthers one to find helpers, and I did. More important, I was on a steep learning curve to convert skills from university to private business. Too bad I couldn't have stayed on a little longer to maximize my financial needs, but themz the breaks, yo. I need all the energy I can muster to get something together that will make everyone's life better.
In spite of the near stroke last year, I am confident that this morning's annual physical results will be better than last year. Poor me back then. Healthier me right now. For openers, diastolic was down 20 pts. Cool, huh? Body is shaking down, but in decent shape, when it ever does cool down and the smoke isn't too bad, I'll get back to walking.
Politics. It's a shambles. I do know a bully when I see one. I do know when someone does not have my best interests at heart. I know lies. I cannot abide bullies. I may even volunteer for someone or something, haven't decided yet. I did get through this record heat without cutting my hair, so I'm still on track for Locks of Love.
Life's work. Courtesy of Johnny B. Truant and the awesome Natalie, whose sharp eyes caught what would have been a tragi/comic error of epic proportions, I now have a Web site. Not ready for public consumption, of course, but it's my newest, biggest, greatest, shiniest sandbox! It's like finally having a bicycle after riding a tricycle for-ever.
After a summer of wildfires and no rain in Texas, earthquakes, floods, tornados, slow, wet hurricanes, and ice melt, I can confidently welcome you to the Wacky World of Unsettled Climate Change. Seeing that bare system sit on top of us for the last six months is a portrait in despair for those living in it, and defiance for those who deny it. Folks, I've lived long enough to be able to say that this may have happened time and time again in the history of the universe, but do not doubt that it is happening right now. The face of America is changing as grotesquely as a botched Hollywood cosmetic surgery. We will have to learn how to live in it. It won't be the same.
For one thing, education is paramount in a healthy civilization. Wars, not so much. Not at all. If we don't educate our children, we will regress as a species. We have too many tricky-ass problems to face and we need everyone thinking about solutions rather than aggression. I am so ashamed for the state I live in that we are ranked #49. That's out of 50. How can we let this happen?
Which brings me to call a spade a spade. Rick Perry is a huge danger to women, children, and the infirm. Can't go there right now. No sense courting a stroke. On the other hand, I am not 100% Obama at the moment. What I would most love is to see a strong, savvy, compassionate, intelligent person no matter what party who could wake everybody up. In a good, peaceful way. Not abandon them in time of need. I deeply resent the MSM for misleading us, slanting "news" to a political agenda.
Which brings me to social media. Once I finally got my goals straight, I next had to decide how much time I would dedicate to which platform(s). FaceBook was a good fit for me for a lot of reasons. The latest change, however, has gravely damaged my daily flow of information. It is making it harder to access one of my more enjoyable and useful networks, especially since I have an old phone and difficulty texting.
I am working with some wonderful writerly women. I had an idea to interview each of them over the next six months to talk about their individual and group writing journeys. Stay tuned.
My friend Colleen Wainwright, the indomitable Communicatrix, will soon be fifty years of age. Colleen has mounted a wonderbubbly righteous birthday celebration that will change many lives for the better.
Colleen Wainwright with two of the L.A. WriteGirls