Tuesday, February 28, 2017

permaculture garden day 2

The sun has to dry out the compost a lot more before I can spread it out over the straw layer.  The compost is the only item I don't believe I got enough of.  

Monday, February 27, 2017

Permaculture "No Dig" Garden

This is the plan I have for the garden at my parents' house this year.  It's a basic no dig garden.  For more on why digging is discouraged in permaculture, read here.  

This is our corner of the yard before we started working.  Annalise took up the tomato stakes and some twige.  A couple hours earlier, I poured two bottles of white vinegar over an ant mount.  
Then, we laid down newspaper.  It was windy, so we put Lucerne (also called alfalfa) down right away before we spread it out.  I didn't want newspapers blowing away.  

I am definitely going to be updating my permaculture garden more on this blog as I get more done.  I actually feel like going out right now and doing some.  

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Tragedy so close to home

Early yesterday morning, I saw a breaking news story.


8 year old girl shot to death in an apparent road rage incident. The news listed the intersection as Fuqua St. at Sam Houston Pkway. My daughter's school is at the intersection of Sabo and Sam Houston Parkway, and the intersection of Fuqua and Sabo is a mile north. All day Saturday, I had gotten the street names confused and assumed that this happened right at the intersection where my daughter's school is.

My daughter was at her dad's house, and I planned on picking her up around 4:00 pm. I quickly texted my ex husband, "If you could please not turn on the news this morning- an 8 year old girl was shot and killed just a block or two away from Stuchbery in a road rage incident this morning. If the news identifies the girl, and Anna knows her, I'd rather she not find out that way."

As the day went on, I dreaded telling my daughter. Because this had happened in our neighborhood and the victim was so close in age to Annalise, a part of me knew the high probability that it was a friend of Annalise's. I didn't know what I was going to do, dealing with this with my child. I also lost a classmate when I was in elementary school. It's so hard for a kid. I did decide that no matter what, I would take Anna to the service if she wanted to go. When I was a kid and my classmate died, my mother didn't let me go to his service.

Then I got in the car to go get her. I purposely drove past the intersection by her school, mistakenly thinking that was the scene, but I quickly realized it wasn't. I had thought Sabo was Fuqua. I then remembered that Fuqua was a mile north. Then, I wondered, where did Fuqua intersect with Sam Houston? I entered it into my GPs, and it was 15 miles west. "Oh" I thought. That must be why they were saying "southwest side" on the news. I kept correcting them in my head, 'it's the southeast side 😡'.

I had no idea Fuqua wound all the way over there.

I texted the friends and family members that I had been telling about this and told them that I had made a mix up. The little girl did not die in my neighborhood, she died about 15 miles away.

Some responded, "whew!"

That response was well-meaning and all, but others responded with a more appropriate response, "it's still a tragedy."  Yes it is.

A gofundme for the family was started here.


Humanitarian Designer

Any woman who goes from fashion designer to SJW is a hero in my book.


Saturday, February 25, 2017

HOW does this happen?

I had another sleepless night getting sucked into YouTube documentaries.


That woman^.

Holy cow!  She lied about being a 9/11 survivor, became the president of the survivors' network, and kept the lie going for SIX WHOLE YEARS through media interviews and everything.

Watching that, a lot of people say, "how come people didn't question this" and "how come people didn't question that", etc.  Someone in the comments mentioned what I think we all know- most people did question it, but put those feelings aside as being politically incorrect. If you remember how the American psyche was in the first 5 or 6 years after 9/11, to question a survivor probably would have been unthinkable. Everyone was so shell shocked, that I believe it really did take the media (and everyone else) 6 years to go, "hey wait a minute".

I don't believe her story to be uncommon. She got caught, because she was so prominent.

Friday, February 24, 2017

So many errands!!!

I have been putting off an insane amount of things that really need to be done, mostly because of resurfacing depression. Yesterday and today, I took personal days to get it all done. I can't even list it all here, because it's so much. A lot of it was miscellaneous work done on the car that I knew would take forever and a day for them to work on. Thank God for uber!  Because it's so easy to request a ride in minutes, I didn't have to sit in these places to wait, nor did I have to wait on someone I know to give me a ride or take the 😫 Bus 😫
The bus is convenient, but you almost always have to walk a great distance to get to a stop and you have to deposit $1.25 every time you change lines. My uber rides have been running $7-$9 each, and they pick you up right where you want and when you want.
Something that felt really really good was that I gave my couch bed to a family in need. A man from their church location came with his truck to pick it up and drop it off at their home. It actually felt better to give it than it would have to sell it, and that is surprising. That brown couch bed has several uses and is very comfortable (at least in couch form), but when I get a new place I want all new furniture. I'm not going to settle with furniture either. I'm definitely going to take my time and be willing to spend more for the right stuff.

Monday, February 20, 2017

My first uber ride

i got service on my brakes, and I did not have a way to get to the shop when the car was ready to pick up. So I decided to request an uber driver. I stood outside of my parents' house with Annalise while we waited for the driver to show up. While they are en route to your location, you can see their car on the map. Annalise got super excited when we saw the car making a turn. I did as I would want someone to do to me and gave the driver a 5 star rating.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Can of worms

This is one of the reasons why I think the ancestry DNA test is so important. This young woman was the product of rape, and because she took the test, she was able to track down her father and his family.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Step Up 4 Revolution - Moose Dance Official Scene

I have never heard of this movie series called "Step Up" in my life.  Looks like something I would have been into when I was a teen.  I learned about them when I found out that my cousin Bobby was the stunt man for the character "Moose".  OMG my cousin even has an IMDb page!

Controversial Beauty

I finally got around to watching Beyonce's performance at the Grammys. I think she was beautiful dressed as Oshun. She made a controversial choice, but she did it wonderfully.


4th grade party

I got to join Annalise's class Valentine's Day party with her friends, teacher, some friends' parents, and room mothers.  While I was checking in at the office, a mom was in front of me with her 2 year old son.  I knew who she was, as her older child is in Anna's class.  The school turned her away because she had the little one with her.  I had forgotten all the crazy rules when you work with children.  I thought that was stupid.  When I got to the class, I told the little boy what happened with his mother, because he was expecting her.  I didn't want him to think his mother ditched him.  

While sitting at my child's desk, I started going through all the papers inside of it.  Annalise kept trying to stop me.  I don't think she has anything in there to hide, I think she inherited her father's organized chaos and didn't want me moving things around.  She knows about the time I was in 5th grade and found a black banana in my desk.  The teacher humiliated me with it in front of the whole class.  

I applied for a respite care position with a man who is caring for his elderly and disabled wife.  He wants me to stay with her for 48 hours straight from a Saturday morning to a Monday morning.  I met with them last night, and they are a lovely couple.  I found them through the app "care.com".  I also got on urban sitter, even though I had a traumatizing experience with urban sitter.  Four days before my cousin Evan was killed, I saw that Urban Sitter allows you to text your contacts and ask for a review.  So I sent Evan the link with a text message that said, "I used to babysit you, and you're still alive". 
He submitted a review of me and called me immediately after for the very last conversation we would have.  Four days later, he was killed, and it wasn't until I was in the car with my parents going to his funeral that I realized I had said the words, "And you're still alive".  When I made that connection, I started sobbing.  My mom was tsk-ing and comforting me with, "You didn't know".  When Evan's mother-in-law had the pre-funeral luncheon at her home, I sat on the steps to her back door and talked with my cousin Mercedes.  I started sobbing again at what I had said to Evan 4 days before he was killed.  My head was bent over into my hands, and Mercedes said, "Look!  Look up!"  She pulled my hand so I could get my face out of my hand.  At that moment, a purple butterfly went right past my face.  I took it as Evan saying don't worry about it, its ok.  I never felt bad about it again.  
So that was my experience on the urban sitter app, but this elderly couple I found on care.com.  
My parents want to know why he's going away for the weekend.  They both joke that he's probably committing infidelity.  I was like, no.  I don't think so.  Caregiver fatigue is real, and it's huge.  Because he's a man caregiver for his wife, he gets the "must be cheating" label.  I'll be going over there this evening to work with her before the weekend starts.  They have three lovely cats and the room that they declared "my room" has a king sized bed with the most beautiful quilt.  That was the first thing I noticed.  I said, "Wow nice quilt!" He looked twice and said, "Yeah I guess it is."
I will be making great money for this only being 2 days.  This is why I wish people would give the app=based "gig economy" chances.  It's really a good thing for more income!

Monday, February 13, 2017


I just want to brag on my 9 year old. She has a birth defect on her ear which is not medically harmful. Usually, her hair covers it. Today, a kid in her class made a comment about it. I told my daughter that she can have it surgically repaired at any time. It won't hurt, and I already have a doctor lined up for it. She said no, that it makes her unique, and the girl is probably just jealous of it. 😛

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Flea Market Day

I usually go to Cole's flea market to sell my jewelry, but this time it was more of a moving sale. I did sell 8 jewelry pieces, though.
When I go there, I have to speak Spanish a lot. It doesn't help that there's a random Greek guy who knows I'm Greek and tries to speak it to me. When I'm dealing with the crowds there, and the foreign language part of my brain is turned to Spanish, it will be a huge mind fuck if I have to switch over to Greek.

There's also this really old white guy. Every time I see him there- every time- he tells me that he used to know my father at the 7 mile fair in Wisconsin. When I was a kid in Chicago, we'd take a weekend to go up there and buy/sell. My father has no recollection of him, though.

Altogether, I made $185. Minus $13 for the table. Minus $6 for tacos, but I would have had to eat lunch whether I was there or not.

Annalise comes with me tomorrow. I definitely need her merchandising skills.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Danielle is in a relationship, and it's complicated

That's my official Facebook relationship status now.

Me and my friend Karl from high school can't stop talking to each other. We tried, but staying apart didn't work. We are still physically apart by over 1,000 miles, but that doesn't seem to matter. I am going back to Arizona on March 10th to see him for another 4 day visit.

I'm also going to see my aunt, because I don't think it's right that my mom has been avoiding her since she lost her grandson. My aunt needs to be in touch with people.

I raised some eyebrows by changing my Facebook relationship status to "it's complicated". Being in different states doesn't complicate things enough. We both have to be nearly 40, each of us single parent who are pressured not to date other single parents, etc.

I have not decided yet if I want to introduce him to my aunt.

Postmates Vlogger

I recently came across a vlogger naed Heather Ramirez. Some of her blogs are about being a postmates courier, and they are very helpful for someone who is new at it. Here are the links:




Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Strange experience

This morning on my way to work, I was listening to the radio and singing along to the song that was playing. Out of the blue, I felt a warm tingly feeling start at the crown of my head and move slowly down my body all the way down to the tips of my toes. It's almost exactly what people who claim to have been miraculously healed of an ailment claim their healing felt like.

This is a link to the song that was playing:


It took at least 30 seconds to go from head to toe. It came out of nowhere. I am not sick, nor have I been praying for healing in any way. I do have my neurological condition,  but it's completely under control with medication and therapy techniques.

There is a woman in my office who is married to an AME preacher. She's really the only person I feel comfortable talking to about this, because of my interpretation of what it felt like. However, she doesn't know about my neurological condition. I shy away from telling a lot of religious people about it, because some still believe it means you are possessed.

I doubt she personally would think that, though. I know her well enough at this point to tell her if the topic comes up.

I just wonder what that was. It was not hot or cold in my car. The temperature was just right.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

No Monopoly

This might be the one and only thing about the Trump presidency that doesn't upset me, but I don't think anything is wrong with Betsy DeVos.  Maybe that's my Texas coming out, who knows.  So, she's in favor of school choice?  Me, too!  The public school system can't have a monopoly on things.  Ms. DeVos isn't perfect.  Neither is anyone else, but the education system needs a major overhaul.  Appointing someone who supports choice is a good start.  That's all!

Exploring the Arctic's Global Seed Vault

Monday, February 6, 2017

Queen Victoria on Masterpiece Theater

Last night, I got to watch the PBS Masterpiece Theater about Queen Victoria. It was amazing!

I loved the wedding scene, and I'm so glad I found it here:


I had a fascination with Queen Victoria when I was a teenager.  This series has really brought me back to that. I had forgotten the feeling of beauty I used to feel when looking at the fashion and customs of her era.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Seed Vault

I didn't know this existed until yesterday when I saw it on a documentary. This is what I believe the most genius storage unit in the world. Personally, I feel so much better about my grandchildren's and great-grandchildrens'future knowing that it's there!!

Saturday, February 4, 2017


I remember my 6th grade teacher trying to explain the three branches of government to us. She insisted that if the founding fathers had not set it up this way, it would be easy to slip into a dictatorship. Of course, I did not fully understand at the time.
I don't thing I completely understood until last night when I literally watched what my 6th grade teacher described. In my eyes, the judicial branch literally stopped President Trump in his tracks. That attorney general said it himself, "No one is above the law, not even the president."


I highly encourage watching the video of the Washington attorney general who announced the decision. ^  He is obviously very passionate about this, and it is encouraging to see passion.

I'm thinking of my 6th grade teacher. She is probably no longer with us. She was very old, even then. But for some reason, my mind took me back there, and I imagined raising my hand and telling her about this, citing it as an example.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Anti-bullying principal


I saw a video of this on social media, and I completely started sobbing. I don't know why. It's the simplest thing in the world.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

No Super Bowl weekend for me

The Super Bowl is being held here in my hometown!!!  I'm actually going to be glad when it's over. We were all pumped up about postmates and uber eats being really busy with tourists. Then as big game day approached, I started dreading the traffic. And the street closures. And the parking. And the people going insane over *a game*.
I started hearing through the grapevine that uber recruited drivers from other cities to fill the demand here this weekend. Therefore, it wasn't going to be as busy for each individual as we thought.
Here comes the complaining in the Facebook group!
I found out today that for my main job, I am going to have to spend 3 days and 2 nights in a rural part of Texas with some families there. Actually, I volunteered for this. It's the only thing that would financially justify choosing not to do postmates or uber this weekend