Tag Archives: kids

Portland, Oregon – The Colors of Autumn

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No matter how you look at it, Portland is a beautiful city.  Its distinct four seasons change her look dramatically from month to month, sometimes draping her in a swath of floral bouquets and, at other times, splashing her with rich, warm color that can rival any New England landscape.

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No matter what the changes are, they are dramatic…..breathtaking, in fact, even after the leaves have fallen and the barren trees stretch their naked branches up to touch the weeping winter sky.

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Not quite ready to say good bye, the last of the summer crocus peeks through the soil in a fanfare of color and charm.

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The creamy white mushrooms hidden among the piñon pine needles calm the soul and lend an air of quiet solitude among the array of festive color.

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…and next spring’s roses grow their protective armor in preparation for their own showcase that will occur after the winter thaw.

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This is autumn in Portland, where my favorite pumpkins grow and thrive in the organic garden, bringing smiles to children’s faces and love within my heart.  Living here is truly living, and it makes me feel so glad to be awake and alive. I feel fulfilled, and have intent and purpose…a reason to get up every morning and face the new day with happiness and joy.

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Even the old feral cats that hide themselves among the bushes, know they are loved.  They are cared for in this city, where people set out dishes of food for them and offer them shelter when the cold winds sweep through after the autumn gives way to the winter months.

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The birds flock here as well, welcomed by the abundances of houses from which to choose….but beware of the cats!

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There is always someplace safe to nest and get in out of the cold.

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The little squirrels keep a watchful eye out for fallen chestnuts or popcorn from passers by.

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Portland is a beautiful city.  I think I might stay here for awhile.  It is a place for family and friends.  It is a place for art and culture, for good food and good times.  Portland  is a place for love and nature.  It is a good place to be, no matter what the time of year.

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I love Portland.

Happy birthday, Sarah.

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36 years ago today, I gave birth to my daughter, Sarah, (shown here with HER daughter, Ingrid, a couple of years ago).  Sarah’s birth was special….We did the Leboyer method of childbirth, in which she was placed in 98.6 degree water as soon as she was born.  The lights were low, and the atmosphere was very beautiful and calm.  It was one of the most moving and beautiful experiences of my life.

I am proud of Sarah beyond belief.  She is  “good people”, productive, intelligent and strong.  She is an independent and happy individual with an awareness of the world around her, and a determination to make it a better place.  I am so very proud.

Happy birthday, darling daughter.  I love you with my whole heart.  ~Ma

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Day #1 – TOGETHER

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Photo a Day – SEPTEMBER

DAY #1 – TOGETHER

© Stacy Alexander – 2013

Day #13 – FAST

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Photo a Day – AUGUST

Day #13 – FAST

© Stacy Alexander – 2013

Day #17 – INSPIRATIONAL

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Photo a Day – JULY

Day #17 – INSPIRATIONAL

© Stacy Alexander – 2013

Day #22 – Enjoying Life

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Photo a Day – JUNE

Day #22 – ENJOYING LIFE

© Stacy Alexander – 2013

Protected: Day #22 – FUN

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Gun Control – Ignorance Strikes Again… (TeaParty Ignorance, that is…) THERE IS NO LEGISLATION AFOOT IN WASHINGTON TO BAN GUN OWNERSHIP!!!

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“…No law or set of laws can keep our children completely safe, but if there’s even one thing we can do, if there’s just one life we can save, we’ve got an obligation to try…” 

Barack H. Obama,

President  of The United States of America

I cannot do an Internet search without finding some T-Partier whining about his or her 2nd Amendment rights being “violated,” claiming that the President is trying to ban guns in America. Feeding right into the right wing media machine of misinformation, they are…..as usual.    Fact is, there is no legislation on the table to ban firearms in this country.  There never has been.

Typically, the teaparty has misrepresented what is going on with the current gun legislation, and they have, as usual, completely disregarded the  historical significance of gun ownership.

The second amendment was written during a time when it took a good 3 or 4 minutes to load a very primitive rifle, and would probably have been written differently had the forefathers known about today’s permitted weapon arsenals of assault weapons.  It very well could have, in fact, have been written to preserve barbaric slavery in America!  Doubt me?  Please read the following article!                                         

(http://truth-out.org/news/item/13890-the-second-amendment-was-ratified-to-preserve-slavery)

 The President simply wants to reinstate the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004. We’re not talking about hunting rifles and sporting handguns.  We’re talking  ASSAULT WEAPONS here!  Assault weapons, which are  semi-automatic firearms  that have certain ergonomic or construction features similar to those of military firearms.   An assault weapon has a detachable magazine, in conjunction with one, two, or more other features such as a pistol grip, a folding or collapsing stock, a flash suppressor, or a bayonet lug.   Why does ANY  U.S. citizen need an assault rifle in his or her home??!!  Expecting a wild elephant attack?  Oh…wait…Assault weapons were not created to kill elephants.  They were specifically manufactured to kill people….and, of course, there hasn’t been quite enough needless killing in America.  Has there?  Just ask the parents of those babies at Sandy Hook Elementary school.

Obama wants to instate universal background checks for gun purchasers. What’s wrong with that?  It is a great idea.   He wants to increase mental health resources to help unstable individuals such as the sick young man who slaughtered those innocent children at Sandy Hook Elementary School , or the other mentally ill person who took those lives over the Christmas holidays mere blocks from my daughter’s house here in Portland …and he wants to do it BEFORE the violence has a chance to occur!  Wow!  Save lives?  That Obama!  Barack  Obama  wants to designate an increase in funding to make our schools more secure and to lift the restrictions that currently prevent our government from studying why gun violence occurs.  I say, hats off to the President.  These actions are crucial in keeping us safer overall.

I am probably much more anti-gun than President Obama is.  I have always had a disdain for gun ownership.  You couldn’t pay me to own a gun.  That is MY right.  I find them distasteful…low class, even.   I have no objection to qualified adults owning them, if they choose, but as a personal stance, I would never own one …..unless maybe if  I lived alone, far up in the wilds of Alaska or some other part of bear country.  I don’t eat meat and do not see a need to hunt.  I’d rather admire wild animals and allow them to live.   Target practice?  Well, it’s loud and obnoxious.  I’d rather shoot an arrow, frankly.  However,  I accept those who disagree with me, and I accept their right to own firearms. This is just how I, personally, feel about gun ownership for me.

I do not believe that the government is chomping on its bit, waiting to remove all firearms so it can “take over” our lives.  I believe that is a stupid conspiracy theory, one of many ignorance-rooted conspiracy theories that that teaparty comes up with that make me sick to my stomach.  The government is too busy trying to get out of Afghanistan, trying to improve education, helping the poor and the elderly, trying to provide medical coverage for those who cannot afford it….more important things than “taking over” some suburban household and its wide screen television, SUV and beige carpet.  No one’s rights have been infringed since Obama took office.  The political right needs to stop with this complete and utter nonsense!

THIS  is Obama’s stance:  ” I have a profound respect for the traditions of hunting that trace back in this country for generations. And I think those who dismiss that out of hand make a big mistake.” and

“Part of being able to move this forward is understanding the reality of guns in urban areas are very different from the realities of guns in rural areas. And if you grew up and your dad gave you a hunting rifle when you were ten, and you went out and spent the day with him and your uncles, and that became part of your family’s traditions, you can see why you’d be pretty protective of that.

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“So it’s trying to bridge those gaps that I think is going to be part of the biggest task over the next several months. And that means that advocates of gun control have to do a little more listening than they do sometimes.”

Second fact of note:  In 1994, RONALD REAGAN supported the ban of further manufacture of assault weapons.  Reagan signed  the “Firearm Owners Protection Act”, which we all know as the machine gun ban, and his anti-gun stance did not end with his presidency. In 1991, Reagan endorsed a bill that would have made a seven day waiting period mandatory nationwide.

Reagan said, “With the right to bear arms comes a great responsibility to use caution and common sense on handgun purchases and it’s just plain common sense that there be a waiting period to allow local law-enforcement officials to conduct background checks on those who wish to purchase handguns.”

Reagan was also anti-gun before he became president, having signed the Mumford Act back in 1967. The act prevented Californians from carrying a gun in their car, on their persons, or in any public place. Yet, I have not read a single sentence written by a member of the Tea Party that mentions this.  No, we must demonize President Obama….whether he is right or whether he is wrong.   This has gone far enough!

I was reading the blog of an acquaintance from Connecticut the other day.  He made some viable suggestions about how we could make our society safer.  First, he proposed putting an electronic device on guns that could disarm them remotely, but the gun’s owner.  It would be similar to the iPhone app that I have.  If anyone steals my phone, I can disable it and wipe out the data from my home computer.  He also practically suggested that some type of internal GPS be installed in every firearm so that if they are taken by an unauthorized party, they can be easily traced.  While these methods of gun safety are not perfect, they do demonstrate that there truly are possible practical measures that can be taken toward ending the untold future violence that is sure to occur if something is not done immediately.

Above all, the lies about President Obama and his position on gun control need to stop.  The Presidents efforts toward gun control are not to take over other people’s lives.  They are intended to make our country a safer place in which to live….they are intended to protect our children and ourselves.  Misinformation is toxic.  It is harmful to all, and it perpetuates the state of violence that exists in this country.  The Tea Party specializes in misinformation.   Rise above it.  Use your intelligence.  Please.

“I’m the Queen of the Life”

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Few things in life are as much fun as watching Ingrid grow and thrive. The joy that this child brings us is simply unsurpassed. Whether she is playing her drums, “writing songs” or just telling us stories, she just fills us with joy and happiness. I simply cannot get enough of her.

Happy Halloween!

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3 yr. old Ingrid decided to go as a “swimming dragon” this year.    Note the uber-snazzy bathing suit!

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When my own kids were small, I rarely allowed  them to eat sugar.  At Halloween, I would let them choose two things to eat from their Trick-or-Treat bags, and then we would make a candy castle out of the rest of it.  They seemed to enjoy that just as much.    Ingrid was allowed to choose four things tonight, which she was very excited about!