Thursday, November 18, 2010

Why Not?

Scene: downtown Portland, Oregon, a bit earlier this year
Motivations(s): My Darling Daughter Bossie Girl seized the moment to have her pic taken with these costumed people.
Now, "Why?", you may ask, are these people dressed up?  Is there some sci fi festival?  Is there a parade?  Is this a promotional stunt for....ummmm......?????
No, my friends, they are dressed up, as they said, "just 'cause", and "just for fun". 
Conclusion: God, we love Portland!!!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

O.k., call me "Geek". But I prefer "Curious and Interested"

So its pretty well understood that I am the geek of this group.  Bossie Tammy recently kindly told me that I wasn't such a geek.  "You're just really curious about stuff...." she said.  Isn't she sweet?

Last weekend, as if to prove the geek stuff, I got all excited about some mollusks.  I know, I know.  But give me a sec to explain:
 - It wasn't just a geeky event.  It was a Rugged Event.  I was out in waders scrambling across fields and down streambanks and over beaver dams.
 - Several of us volunteers were surveying for and measuring some threatened native mussels that help keep streamwater clean for stuff like that yummy salmon you might have on your dinner plate.
 - The Xerces Society and the Johnson Creek Watershed Council are two environmental groups that really take action and accomplish things to improve the environment so that not only the animals but us people and our environment and economy right here in the city.
 - Here in Portland, Oregon, you can still find a stream that has salmon and beaver in it.  Right in the middle of the city.
 - Who knew there were freshwater mussles?  Did you???  Cool, right?  Right???  Ummm....o.k....

 Yesiree, folks, that is a Genu-wine real life, Oregon native freshwater mussel in my hand.

Now for the Bossy Stuff:
What causes do you most want to support?  Do you want to do something to help the environment?  Go find your local watershed council and see what activities they have going on.  Do you want to help kids?  Go find a mentoring program, or volunteer for special events now and then at a local children's museum. There are so many causes that need volunteers.
I bet you you can find some volunteer activities that are not just good deeds, but are also good fun.
Go for it! (Hint: I linked straight to the Volunteer Opportunities webpages for the organizations above.) :-)

Monday, August 9, 2010

But was it such an adventure, really? For this particular Bossie Girl, that is.


Love this photo from this year's Oregon Country Fair!
Words tend to fail me when I try to describe the fair's pure awesomeness.  Its sorta Renaissance Fair-like: in a wooded setting with a rather strong woodland-hippie-fairy theme.
Everywhere you turn is a colorful visual feast.

My favorite part: people are playing.  There are puppets, dress-up clothes, stilts, juggling balls, hula hoops, masks, crafts,  tee-hee - you should see the free-form hippy marching bands!  - singing, dancing, laughing, skipping, even.  All from the grown-ups as well as the children.  And all my Bossie Girls know how much I love it when adults let their inner children play.  So, while I do know that not positively Everyone In The Entire World will feel comfortable at the Country Fair, I tend to have a bit of a prejudiced view.  "Look at all this happiness and creativity and play!," I think.
                     "How could anyone not be into this?"

Of course, having been a child of hippies during the late '60's and early '70's in California, living in an ashram (sorta like a commune, but with more outward focus - look it up, silly! :-p) complete with a guru and an organic garden before anyone else in the country had even heard of tofu... well, lets just say that from when I first ever set foot in the Oregon Country Fair, I felt very happily right at home.  Even though by the first time I went we were all deep in the midst of the '80's (wasn't that the "greed is good" decade?), and my day to day life is far from a commune or ashram. Still, I was so instantly happy there.
So, I have to ask myself, what about trying out some of the happy festivities that other people love that are outside my "comfort area"?  What about, say, a rodeo?  I mean, I'm always going on about how people should try new things, right? I want to expand my experiences (especially fun ones) and appreciate more cultures, including all the subcultures right here in our own country.

Its time for me to go find, say, a picnic organized by the local country music radio station or something.  Hmmmm......
Time to ask my Bossie Girls for their opinions.  I'm sure they will be willing to give them.

You can see even more amazing images of the Oregon Country Fair at their website.
Here are just a few favs that I took a couple years back:

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Ladies' Old Fashioned Tea Party




Yes folks, we did throw an old-fashioned tea party!
For an extra special tea party, the Bossie Girls say:
  • A small-ish group works well for this.  When everyone can fit around the table, we can all hear each other chat and laugh.  This is excellent Bonding Time With Your Bossies!
  • Make sure to have some dress-up clothes on hand for this!  It gives it a sense of occasion and play, and not everyone has a tea-party-ish hat.  
  • Next time, Bossie Ms. Pip here will make sure to have extra dress-up clothes on hand.  As it was, we had fun with the collection of vintage aprons, table cloths, and scarves that I had picked up on Craigslist.  (For a great price, of course!)
  • Make it a potluck if you do not have time to prepare goodies.
  • If you can manage to have some cookies baking when your guests arrive, they will be very happy about it.  I promise!  Trader Joe's cookies are Very Yummy... just in case no one has time to bake.  You can heat them up in the oven to make them warm and spread the yummy smell throughout the house.   Mmmmmmmmmm.......
  • If your group is up for it, feel free to spike the tea.  Its medicinal.  Of course it is!  You may, of course, feel Plenty Festive Enough with straight tea.
  • Google how to read tea leaves!  Then, tell everyone what you learned.  Everyone can read their own, taking turns 'round the table.
  • Ask people to tell stories about tea parties from other times.
  • A tea set With Attitude can add to the occasion:
                               

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Bossie Girlfriend Points for Bossie Ms. Hattie

A gazillion Bossie Girlfriend points to Miss Hattie, who, after joining me in seeing my only daughter graduate from high school and go off to the senior all-night party, get this:
     Showed up at my house with champagne and sympathy and proceeded to tell me how wonderful my daughter was. What a Pal!  What a Pal!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Found, via Meetup: Best Salsa Dancing Venue Ever!

Meetup.com is an awesome website!  If you are new in a town, or bored in your same-'ol town, or just want to add some variety to your life, meetup.com could be a great source of Fun and Adventure.
How cool is this: outdoor salsa dancing at a Cuban-owned winery.  There was, of course, a wine tasting. :-) The sun came in and out while a band played. Dozens of us danced on a big round patio alongside a water fountain and lavender.  

DH deserves all the credit for making this Adventure happen.  Ms. Pippin here was getting cranky about our infrequent dancing.  DH was sympathetic, being the avid salsero (salsa aficionado) that he is.  The problem is, most salsa events start so late at night, and we are, ahem, Feeling Old when we try to dance too late.  Well, folks, this may not be a long-term solution to our problem, but if we keep up this level of creativity and initiative, we may find more salsa events that match our schedules.
Salsa Dancer and Teacher Extraordinaire, George Caceres organized the Meetup (and gets credit for the photos). You can find some of his classes here
Cubanismo Vinyards is Outside of Salem, Oregon.  Mauricio, the owner, is very friendly.  My favorite wines were the rosados (ros├ęs).  There will be lessons and dancing there again on June 19th and  July 17th.  

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ladies' Spring Tea Party

Another fun idea: Send off spring with a tea party!  (The old fashioned kind.  No politics here.)  The Bossies are planning this year's tea party.  Here is a picture from last year's success:



Spring hats, gloves, vintage aprons and tablecloths, flowers, tea, scones...  Perhaps we had a smidgen more cocktails in our tea cups than actual tea...  Bossie Kristy studied up on how to read tea leaves and we all took turns trying to read the leaves in the bottom of our cups.  By the end of the party we were all singing gospel music together.  Two of the Bossies were so inspired, they started a community choir soon after!

Community organizing or not, this is a super fun idea for a party.  Especially when you have a bunch of people with indeterminate schedules.  You can have 25 people or 5 people; its fun either way.  Just ask them to bring tea and little tea-party type snackies.  Cucumber sandwiches, anyone?