What an action-packed couple of weeks. The omicron variant has surged here in Northern California, as it has done everywhere. The parents closed the deal on the sale of their property. And, my research design class has begun.  

It has been nice, being out of class for October and November. For 2.5 years, my doctoral classes ran straight through summer, fall, and winter with very few breaks. This most recent break at the end of 2021 came about because of my transfer to another college. It was not planned. Yet, since enrolling in the doctoral program, I have learned a lot about myself. 

Sure, I have learned about other things. I have read numerous books and countless journal articles. I have lost track of the number of papers I have written and the total number of annotated bibliographies. And, I have changed my thoughts on my research topic several times along the way.  

This current 11-week class will allow me to shape my research and begin the dissertation phase. Of course, there is a 5-week session for the final exam after this course, so my dissertation will not begin until summer session. The dissertation phase will run through the fall session and end with the spring 2023 session. And, that's a little disheartening. 

While I am happy to know that the finish line is in sight, I am frustrated that I am faced with another year of research. It is agonizing to think that I will not officially graduate the doctoral program for another calendar year. To stay focused and to stay on the path, I began to think about what is going right. And, I find a little joy in the little things...like a nice sunrise, a quality pencil and trusty notebook, and an annotated book of Tennyson's poems that belonged to my great grandfather.


I said goodby to a dear friend today. While I am full of sadness, I take comfort in the fact that this little dog brought so much joy to not only my life but to my son's life. Ruby was his first dog, and she lived a great life for 14 years. 

She was stubborn and bull-headed, but that’s what made her adorable. She always ate first and asked questions later. But, cancer reared it’s ugly head. She tried to battle it, and was brave to the end. It’s only fitting that we say goodbye on a Tuesday. Goodbye, sweet girl. 

Ruby Tuesday

Ruby bonded with C from the moment we brought her home. And, she taught us to see the simple joys of life in your 14+ years with us. Oh, she were stubborn but that’s just one of the things we adored about her. She was always up for adventure and she wagged that tail until the very end. She was pure of heart and she was absolutely the bestest of doggos. 

Run wild, and sniff all the things. Eat first and ask questions later. Be free, Ruby girl. 


Traditionally, this is a time of year for giving thanks. And, while I am thankful for many things, I have been giving that word "tradition" a lot of thought lately. Gratitude is a constant in my life but as I get older I am beginning to understand that some traditions carry forward and other traditions come to an abrupt end. And, I’m not sure how I feel about that.  

One tradition that is coming to an end, after a 30-year run is the tradition of meeting for Thanksgiving and Christmas at my parents home. They have decided to sell their home and move to a condominium. I’m going to miss that 6-acre property and all the memories made there, during holidays and regular days. I already miss the animals: the dogs, cats, llamas, goats, chickens, and miniature donkeys. 

It’s an odd thing to watch traditions be slowly disassembled. My parents are in the process of downsizing, donating and selling things. In some ways, it is odd to see them part with so many things they've gathered over their 50+ years of marriage, and as individuals over 80+ years of life. When I visit, I take as many pictures as I can...knowing that those images may be the last things left after the traditions are gone. 

fall 2021

Welcome to decorative gourd season, 2021! 

Upside: I am so close to completing the prescribed list of courses for my doctoral program, and should be finished by the end of October.  

Downside: I am forced to wait until Spring 2022 semester to begin the research/dissertation phase. 

Honestly, there are so many positives and negatives to my current situation that I feel like I should make a T-chart. One the one hand, I will have a nice break over November and December. On the other hand, this delay pushes my graduation date out by a semester. I'll stop there before I get myself irritated over the whole mess that was initiated with Concordia University Portland suddenly closing their operations after I was 1.5 years deep into the program. Ugh. 

Instead, I will focus on the positives. Hey, maybe I'll have time to clean up this clown show of a website. It is in serious need of updating. After all, I began this site as a way to document the processes, pains, and products of my doctoral studies. And, maybe get back into the letterpress workshop and make something!