Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Health Benefits of Pasta: Complex Carbohydrates Fortified with Folic Acid.

O.K. So I'm just happy to read this because it enables me to eat all my carbs I love so much and tell myself I won't get fat. But we all know TOO many carbs makes you fat. But I do love my pasta - with anything but tomato sauce. ;-)

I joined the Y - finally! (Personal)

This has been such a long time coming...I've complained about being out of shape, made "resolutions", you name it. But now I am an official, card-carrying member of the YMCA.

I joined at the end of July, 2005. I go to the North Suburban branch. They have been doing renovations, and I have been very impressed at how they have stayed completely handicapped accessible during all of the construction.

Soon they will have FitLinxx computers connected to all of my nautalis machines, and I can't wait! No more counting reps, no more keeping notes on how much weight I lift, or seat settings! Can't post more now...I have to go lift weights! :-)

Monday, August 29, 2005

My new job at the John Glenn Middle School in Bedford! (Personal)


I accepted a position today at the John Glenn Middle School. I am very relieved to have found such a great school to work at. I've already met some folks there, and I feel really good about it. Everyone has been so welcoming! I am a teaching assistant in special education. John Glenn Middle School is part of the Bedford Public Schools, a small but excellent school system.

Happy September to all the students and school staff out there! Here's to New Beginnings! :-)

Boho Chic - Bohemian Fashion! (Entertainment - clothes & jewlery)

So I saw this link on my hotmail page to About.com's page about Boho Chic, the supposedly "new IN style". I'm not usually one to go for this kinda stuff....but this is my DREAM style! I've always said I should have been born in the Flower Child Era....but I'll settle for dressing like it now. ;-)

Friday, August 26, 2005

Scrapbooking! (Spiritual - memorials/memories)

I "discovered" scrapbooking in the last few years. I mean, I had a scrapbook that I used to put all my things from elem to high school in. And then I started a brand new one for college. I liked what I did with that one, in that it was more creative than the ugly BLACK PAPER one I had all my childhood stuff in. But neither is what you'd call terribly creative, or all that attractive.

So now I've got a brand new scrapbook to put all of my "post-history" mementos in. I got my scrapbook at Michaels Craft Store, and have been browsing sites like Paper Source.

My niece Shelley is an excellent scrapbooker. I'm hoping to pick up some tips from her. And I've collected some scrapbooking sites like One Scrappy Site and the webring 100 Scrapbooking Sites.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Fisherman's Feast (Personal/travels) (Ent./food)


Today we went to the North End and had dinner at Pizzeria Regina. Then it was on to The Fisherman's Feast, Boston's oldest Italian Festival in the North End. It is a feast to show devotion to Madonna del Soccorso (Our Lady of Help). My favorite part was the Flight of the Angel.

George Bush - rant

From time to time I will take the opportunity to rant. If you know me, you know I HAVE to rant when I get torked off about something...and I am thinking about all the times I've read peoples editorials etc. on websites and blogs and thought "Yeah! What she said!". So I hope some folks get that experience if they drop in here and happen upon a "rant". ;-)

On my old page, I would call the people and organizations I was angered by nasty names. It was actually *fun* getting torked, and then using that adrenaline to rant - and I'll admit - pretty obnoxiously. I got some pretty ugly emails as a result. I have to say that some of those emails resulted in surprisingly open conversations with people who disagreed with me. But still, I've decided it is more mature to just state my problem with something and *try* to temper my language. ;-)

So naturally, my first rant on my new blog HAD to be about George W. Bush. He was on my list on my old website, but he just keeps making me angrier. Well, this N.O.W. website The Truth About George covers most of the bases.

He wants to legislate his religion. And I just can't stand that. He has fought against gay marital rights, and against a woman's right to choose. I understand his feelings on both of these issue...but what HE doesn't understand is that the Constitution says that no leader should legislate in this way. Our society has people who are of a faith that doesn't have a problem with homosexuality. And there are people who do not believe that abortion is murder. Leaders can't be MAKING these decisions FOR citizens. It goes against everything the US was *founded* on.

GWB also lied to get us into a war. While I agree that democracy should be a part of *every* government...leaders should not send our soldiers to other countries to kill people just to establish democracy. This is just my two cents. Check out TTAG for more info. on what's wrong with our current administration in 2005.

Get Involved - Change your World! You CAN! (Political - resources)

So I've been blogging new sites by topics that fit the topics from my old site. And I've slowly been trying to post at least ONE entry for EACH of my pages, to sort of "bring them up to date".

One of my favorite pages on my website is my Political Page. (Link in post title...most of my post titles are clickable...it isn't obvious). I've listed several issues or causes that really matter to me, and provided links to organizations that seem to be making an honest, and meaningful effort to effect change in our world. This is something that inspires me on a personal and spiritual level, and intellectually, just makes SENSE to me. I love to find webpages that list resources for me to get involved, and I started my page mostly for my own reference.

So check my Political page of my old site. Some links will be broken until I have time to weed them out. And this will be the new home of all NEW links. Such as these:

Make Poverty History - seems like a good idea to me. Let's hope those 8 rich white guys do all they can, since they have a lot more power than you or I. But we DO have power....and that's important to never forget. Check out the site! And get a white band

Corporate Social Responsibility Reports. This is Starbucks'. I think it would be great if everyone could *insist* that every corporation in the country had to put one of these out quarterly. Maybe if we only give our business to companies that do it...all the others would be forced to? I'll update this post with other companies that are socially responsible...or at least put out reports to let consumers know HOW socially responsibly they are being. ;-)

Equal Marriage Now
Many organizations, in this case N.O.W., are fighting for equal rights for gay people to get married. I'll post further links soon, but in the meantime my old Political page still has *some* good links for gay rights, and I'm sure they've added the fight for eqaul marriage rights if they didn't have resources on this before.

Restaurant Updates


Finally, I'm getting around to posting about our favorite pizza place when we visit my in-laws. We've been going to Forte Pizzeria for YEARS now! Every time we visit da family, a visit to Forte's is a MUST. Their pizzas are unique and delicious, and their calzones and stromboli's are also just wonderful. And the family who owns it, and the other folks who work there are as nice and welcoming as they could be. They always remember us when we come back to visit, and I always tell them, "It wouldn't be a complete visit to NJ without a trip to Forte's."

In July I discovered KnowFat! Lifestyle Grille with my friend Dawn. She'd told me about it, and I'd been meaning to try it, so we finally did. One of the last times we were in New Jersey, Jennifer & Rob (SIL and her hubby) introduced me to Cold Stone Creamery. I don't know how long they've had locations in Boston, but I'd never been to one. I'm a convert! ;-)

Quite a while ago now, sadly, one of our favorite places Marche Movenpick at the Prudential Center, closed its doors. Fortunately there are still Movenpicks worldwide, and we can still go to their Montreal and Toronto locations in Canada.

Over the past year, my mom introduced Kevin and I to Stellina's in Watertown, MA. Here is a like to a recipe for Mark Bouchard's fusilli with smoked goat cheese, roasted mushrooms, and swiss chard. This place is just YUMMY.

And to save the best for last, a restaurant that deserves a post ALL of their own, is Sweet Basil in Needham, MA. A parent of a former student gave us a gift certificate many many years ago now...and it has been our FAVORITE spot for special occaision dining ever since. Not because it COSTS like "special occaision dining", (it doesn't), but because it is just so excellent! We recommend the Cesaer salad and Rosemary Chicken, but their risottos are always excellent as well. And the bread comes with this pesto spread that is just to DIE for!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

So Much Great Music!


I've discovered sooo many new artists since I stopped updating my website. And recently many of my favorite artists are coming out with GREAT new music. Check out my Music Page for all the great music I discovered *before* we got satellite radio. ;-)

One singer-songwriter who I am liking more and more as she grows as an artist is Dar Williams. Her sound seems more varied to me now than it did when I discovered her in college. I love what I've heard of her new album, especially the song Echoes. It is all about making a conscious choice each day, or in each moment that you can, to do the kind, gentle, generous thing...and how even the littlest act on our part can have deep, eternal power. If you know me at *all*, you can picture me actually CRYING the first time I heard this song. I'm just a total sucker for this kind of song. If I could talk to Ms. Williams, I would be a total groupie and be like, "OMG Dar thank you so much for writing that SONG! I love it so *much*!". ;-) It totally appeals to the idealist in me, because it makes me feel like "Yes! There are other people who believe in world peace as much as I do!". :-) Dar even has a new project called Echoes Initiative. So this is more than just a song to her, too.

Some of the new artists I've discovered include Joss Stone and Los Lonely Boys. And speaking of Los Lonely Boys, one of the things XM has done for me is introduce me to Latin music. I *think* I like Shakira. But as this review points out, it might just be because I don't understand Spanish! On the other hand, since I don't understand it, I might be misunderstanding the lyrics because word-for-word translations don't always capture the "real meaning" of a song. Keep watching this post...I'll keep bumping it up to my current page when I add to it.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Memories....

This summer, like most summers, I've been reflecting on where I am along the road of life's journey thus far. It blows my mind when I think about all of the gifts God has given me. I've been so fortunate to have loving family, wonderful friends, and to find a warm, generous and thoughtful partner to share the rest of my life with. Anyway...so I like to look back on the years and remember my favorite people and moments. That's why I have a personal page on my website...and why I'll continue to blog about my travels, my family and friends. I've also been journaling in part with the help of Kathleen Adams books. I journal about my blessings, my accomplishments, the people and things I love. And I also journal about things that worry me, make me mad, sad, or frustrate me. Obviously I won't post much on this "fun" blog about these things...but I highly recommend journaling if you're working through some hard things, or just have a goal in your life and feel you need help staying on track!

So googling for old schools and friends, I've found some pretty cool stuff, like Shawn Garvey's website. And today I ran across the Wellington Elementary School webpage. I don't think this page existed when I first linked to my alma maters on my Personal page. It was a hoot to see how MANY of my teachers are still there, almost 25 years later. I remember sooo many wonderful people I remember "Mrs. Rosenburg" when she was MISS Rosen! Some of the kids thought she'd married Mr. Burg! LOL!

BA - Balanced Assessment in Mathematics - Education Link

Years ago, as you'll see on his website, Kevin worked for the projectBalanced Assessment in Mathematics. Their math assessments are a great tool for all teachers

The Nth Degree (Political - disability/Entertainment)


Here's yet ANOTHER site that is on my old site, on my political page under Disability Rights.

But The Nth Degree is about so much more than just "disability rights", it is about disability culture, and human rights. You'll find a fabulous catalog with posters, pins, and t-shirts that celebrate the human spirit with power, and some cases side-splitting humor.

That fablous, proud disabled woman you see? A pin from Nth degree! And Dan Wilkins, the webmaster, also has a page dedicated to great disability literature.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Academy for Transformation - part of YouthBuild USA - a blast from my past! (Personal/Education)

On my old website, on my Political Page you will find links to organizations for Economic Justice and Youth services. YouthBuild is one of the organizations. But YouthBuild is more than just one human services organization among many that I appreciate. I worked at YouthBuild's first Boston area office in Belmont MA when I was in college. John Bell and Dorothy Stoneman Bell were huge heroes to me, and gave me my first real taste of what is is like to LIVE for social change and justice. Now, John Bell works at their Academy for Transformation. I've yet to explore all they do, but I'm so sure its AMAZING, I blogged it without even reading it! :-)

Crip Commentary Blog by Laura Hershey

Crip Commentary Blog

Laura Hershey has a blog! Laura Hershey has a blog! Yay! Yah! :-)

Okay...so I'm a little excited, because this woman - - ugh! I can't "charaterize" her without leaving something out. She does amazing powerful poetry. She writes incredible articles about disability and human rights. Go over to my Poetry Blog and you'll find a new link for her poetry!

OMG I'm so excited this woman has a blog......

Amy

Reading: The Blue Shoe and Operating Instructions by Anne Lammot
Stitching: Greatest Treasure & Magic in the Morning by Dragon Dreams and Cozy Cove by Charles Wysocki
Listening: XM, Sirius....country, folks, aa - you name it!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

More Music Venues! (Music/Venues)

When I created the music page of my site, I decided to have a section of venues in the Boston area. Since then, I've discovered venues I hadn't known much about then. Such as Lowell Memorial Auditorium, Mohegan Sun, (there are FREE performances in the Wolf Den ), and Indian Ranch (this is their schedule for 2005). Watch this post for more venues!

Edinburg Jail Diversion Program (Political)

This article is about the Edinburg Jail Diversion Program, and a friend of mine does work for them. If this had gone on my old website, I could have put this under "friends", because my friend is involved, I could have put it under "spiritual" links, because I find it INSPIRING to hear about people working to provide individuals with various challenges HELP, rather than just jail time when they've made a bad choice....and I think its rather obvious why it could also go under "political". Either way, stuff like this gets my totally jazzed - even when it doesn't involve a friend!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Summer 2004 Travels

We spent time in Canda. Kevin really loves all things Canada. We listen to CBC radio on the internet, including The Vinyl Cafe with Stuart McLean. Now, to be honest, after a while his accent drives me NUTS. ;-) But the stories are funny, the music is amazing, and he seems like a totally sweet guy...not to mention talented. We also went to FondueMentale, where they were playing k.d. lang on the radio. Now, we love k.d. lang, and even though we were in Canada, we were just a bit curious that it was alllll k.d. alllll night. We figured out that it was her cd hymns of the 49th parallel, a celebration of Canadian songwriters.

Ancient Moon Beads (Entertainment - crafts)

Ancient Moon Beads is a lovely lovely store. I've not been to their new location, but I'm sure it is just a lovely as their old one. There was a fire on Galen Street, and I'd wondered where they would end up. I encourage you, if you live in or visit Watertown, and you love beads - visit them!

Daughters Newsletter: resource for parents on raising girls (Education Link)

I'm not a parent, but I think Daughters Newsletter: resource for parents on raising girls, sounds pretty cool! I definitly think that raising both girls and boys presents unique challenges that any parents could use a hand with...but as a woman, I especially appreciate a magazine to help parents raise competent and confident girls in a society that doesn't always honor and respect girls.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Summer 2005 Travels


On my website, I have entries for every summer since I met Kevin, describing all of the wonderful places we've travelled to, as well as descriptions of childhood vacation spots. I missed Summer 2004, but I'll reconstruct and blog it. Meanwhile, there are pictures of our Summer 2003 Travels in my webshots album. (See "Pictures" link to the left).

This summer has had its own wonderful travels. We started as soon as school ended with a return trip to see the Trambley family in Warren, PA. Adam is the minister at Trinity Memorial Church there.

We went to Vermont and visited The King Arthur Flour Baker's Store. And we took at tour at the Vermont Teddy Bear Factory. We got to see how their teddy bears are made, how they are repaired in the "bear hospital", and we got a souvenier mini-cut-out in the shape of a bear! Over the years, we have become the proud parents of a misfit bear, a Graduation Bear, (thanks, Aunty!), an Angel Bear (thanks, Jenn & Rob!), as well as one we won from a radio station that I couldn't find on the website. ;-)

We spent the evening at the Juniper Hill Inn, which is where we spent our wedding night. They are such lovely people. Every little detail shows how much they care about their visitors. Oh, and they are also members of the Green Hotels Association. I guess they're the people responsible for "on the floor, please replace, on the towel rack, I'll use again". ;-) I journaled in one of their guestbooks, as I'm sure I did seven years ago. I loved reading other couples stories. Discussing this with our innkeeper, she told me about a wonderful group of historians in Vermont, who maintain Flow of History.

We also went to Shelburne Farms, and I milked my first cow ever! She was pregnant, due in October. S'pose she brought me luck? Time will tell. ;-) One place we didn't get to visit that I hope we might someday is the Vermont Wildflower Farm.

Then we went to Washington, D.C. and took a tour of National Public Radio. This was our second time taking "da tour", but one tour didn't seem like enough for the man who maintains PublicRadioFan.com . I tried really hard to not act like a groupie (one, because that is sooo undignified, but also because being an NPR Groupie just seems like the nerdiest thing in the entire *WORLD* ;-) ). But nonetheless, a few times when passing so-and-so's office, even though "so-and-so" wasn't even IN their office, I had to quietly whisper to Kevin, "Groupie Moment!". Seeing Neal Conan do his thing was waaaay cool. I also enjoyed seeing the engineers and producers you never even see on websites. I got a real kick out of seeing how much some of them just LOVE their jobs. You could tell they have fun at work, and they do great work! Scott Simon is my favorite NPR personality...but now I'm really sounding like an NPR junkie.

After spending a lovely evening with Aunt Toni and Uncle Bernie, we went to the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. It was July 19, the 10th anniversary of my father's death. Part of the Smithonian, I thought Dad would have been pleased to know I married someone who enjoyed Smithsonian museums with me.

My favorite temporary exhibit was definitely Visual Music. And of the various works of art within that exhibit, my most favorite without a doubt was the Color Organs! I could have sat and just stared at these for hours. They are so peaceful and beautiful. Simply Serene. You can check out their online, interactive exhibit to get a sense of what it's like.

We also spent a weekend in Bar Harbor, Maine and relived getting engaged. (See Summer 1997 on my webpage if you care ;-). We loved Acadia National Park and Cadillac Mountain just as much at sunset (twice) as we did at sunrise. ;-) We visited Eartha, the "World’s Largest Revolving/Rotating Globe". Guinness has made it official. :-) The picture above is from the outside of the building, from their website. Click to see more pics.

In the morning we enjoyed a lovely breakfast at 2 cats Restaurant, and although we didn't stay at the inn, I did shop at their store and get some cute stuff with their logo on it! Before we left, we went to Timber Tina's Great Maine Lumberjack Show" - a Lumberjack & jill show! We had seen Lumberjack events on television, and so we thought we would find the show at least funny in a campy way, but it was more than that...a very funny and interesting show. Timber Tina was the host, and she was the consummate host! To learn more about women in logging sports, visit the homepage for Timber Tina's World Champion Lumberjills! (That's Timber Tina in the middle).

Zion's Herald (Spirituality Links)

In our home, we are receiving some copies of Zions Herald, because one of our favorite spiritual magazines is no longer in business, and so they have ZH filling the rest of our subscription's issues. I think we're going to like this one too!

But the *good* news is that The Other Side continues to keep their archives online! If you were never fortunate enought to read one of their issues, check out their website - it offers "strength for the journey".

Thursday, August 04, 2005

My mom & aunt's summer house in the White Mountains of New Hampshire !

This house in the White Mountains of New Hampshire belong to my mom's grandparents! She and my aunt Barbara spent their summers here! Isn't that just totally *wild*? :-)

Shawn Garvey - Pastor, Poet - and old school chum! :-)(Music/Spiritual/Personal-friends)


Shawn Garvey is a UCC minister *and* a talented musician. His website is already listed on my old site, but I wanted to post about his show in Bloomfield, NJ Sunday Oct. 23, 2005. I've yet to hear him in person, but Shawn is such a wonderful soul, I can confidentally tell you that if he's in your neck of the woods, you NEED to go hear him!

According to his calendar, he'll be playing near my inlaws! :-) I am fortunate to have known Shawn since middle school (before he was a minister OR a rising acoustic music star).

History: I sat in front of him in Mr. Topham's English class at Chenery Middle School back in 1983? ;-) I was also a Performing Arts Company wannabe at Belmont High School because off all the "cool kids" like Shawn. He was definately one of the sweetest of the "cool artsy kids". No wonder he loves acoustic/contemporary folk-rock music!

Dove's new ad campaign (Political)

When Tush Comes to Dove by Seth Stevenson

It was only a matter of time before I found an article on the web about this. I love Dove's new ad campaign! But Kevin reminded me of what my Wheelock "graduate of Gail Dines' courses on feminism and the media" background taught me back in the late 80's to early '90s. The media, especially advertising, is all about making people (especially women and minorities) feel either inferior or invisible, so that you need to buy their products to "fix" your inferior self. (By "their" products, I mean the advertisers' *and* the media's because after all, they are one in the same: commercial media wouldn't EXIST without the advertisers and their products to sell).

{{Sigh}}. I hate when my bubbles burst. But I suppose I'd rather be genuinely happy in an informed way, than ignorantly blissfull. I suppose....

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Bob Geldof (Political/Spiritual/inspiring people)

So I've got an entry about new artists I've discovered, and favorites who have new stuff out, but this man is so much MORE than just a musician. He is a humanitarian of the highest order. He is passionate about justice for people in Afrcia. He has inspired me since Live Aid (gulp!) 20 years ago, and now with Live8 (see G8 post), I'm inspired all over again. Visit The Official Bob Geldof Website for more information on the man, his music, and his mission.

John Hockenberry is awesome! (Political)


PARADE Magazine | Yes, You Can--July 24, 2005

I've always liked Parade Magazine. I like to read the interview at the end, and the Q & A braincandy about celebrities at the front. I also like Marilyn's column (the genius lady ;-).

But this feature is celebrating the anniversary of the ADA. And with an essay by one of my favorite award-winning television commentator, radio host and foreign correspondents - John Hockenberry! (This is his description from the article. ;-)

If you've not read it, I highly recommened his book "Moving Violations". Hockenberry is intelligent, compelling, and funny. And his features on disability issues are all that and more!

New Panda cub for Bai Yun! Mei Xiang's cub is a boy! (Education, Science post)

Bai Yun has had another baby! This is her Third! For lots more information, check out the San Diego Zoo pandablog!

And in Washington, D.C. at the National Zoo, they have determined that Mei Xiang's cub is a boy!

It's a Panda Bonanza! :-)

Wedded Bliss (Friends & Family)

I was just revisiting Kara & Philip's Wedding Webpage.
It is such a sweet way to commemorate this special time in a couple's lives. I wish WE'D thought of this when we got married...oh, I married *Kevin*! Never mind! LOL! ;-)

Wheelock College Alumni Association (Personal)

Wheelock College Alumni Association

I just got off the phone with my dear roomie from college, Kristen. We've got Reunion Weekend coming up next year....omg. I *am* getting old. Class of '91. Lordy, Lordy!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Grocery Store Wars | Join the Organic Rebellion (Entertainment/humor)

This would fall under the category "Entertainment/Retro". ;-) - Amy

Grocery Store Wars | Join the Organic Rebellion

If you are a Star Wars fan, or have any nostalgia for the movies at ALL....you'll get a kick out of this...

Amy's Blog - an extension of my old website

When I moved in with my hubby, I made a pretty cool website. Over the years, I worked really hard on it, collected a TON of great sites/resources... but it grew waaaay too big. I kept needing to create "subtopic under subtopic" to make it managable to get around. So now my old site is humongous...most sections are still pretty excellent, but there are broken or otherwise outdated links, old info., etc. So I've decided to leave my old site up, but not update it anymore. This blog is my "new web page" - I'm going to use it to post about things that would have gone on one of the topic pages of my old site, and indicate which page I WOULD have posted on my old site.

If you go to my old site , you'll see the 9 pages (other than the "front") listed to the left. They are dedicated to music, politics, education, spirituality, entertainment (other than music or politics ;-)), Family & Friends, personal stuff OTHER than family & friends, poetry, and vile creeps (i.e. people, organizations, or events that tork me off).

Now ALL of my own poetry is on my poetry blog, and that's where you'll also find posts about new poetry sites I find. Everything *else* I would have previously added to my old site I will post here, probably with a label 'music link' or 'spirituality link', etc. to organize it loosely like I did the old site. When I post about vile creeps I'll probably just tag it with "Rant Ahead!" ;-)

If you have any thoughts on this new idea about how to use this blog (like "cool, Amy!" OR "umm, it sounds kinda stupid Ame") feel free to post a comment! I'd really appreciate your ideas about how best to use this blog so it is interesting and/or useful to someone besides me. ;-)

Amy

Monday, August 01, 2005

XM Radio - The Loft



About a year ago, satellite radio entered our lives, and we have never been the same. ;-) One of our favorite channels on XM radio is The Loft. One of my favorite programs is Mixed Bag Radio with Fornatale.

We also subscribe {{blush, yes we're spoiled but we LOVE music}} to Sirius, and our favorite show there can be found on Sirius Disorder, channel 24. It is called Vin Scelsa’s Sunday Night Idiot’s Delight. (That's him above, as pictured on the Sirius website.)

Both of these guys also work for WFUV in New York.

The Network of Spiritual Progressives

I love this website, The Network of Spiritual Progressives. This is a link to their Core Vision which I think you might be most interested in if you've never heard of this organization. It is a project of the Tikkun Community, a Jewish organization that is also inter-faith and made of of a group of folks working for social justice and inter-faith appreciation, tolerance, and love.