The End

After 1531 posts and over 37,000 comments, I’m going to slowly step away from this blog, at least for the time being. I’ve been feeling uncomfortable here for some time. I haven’t been happy with the direction I was taking, and no matter what I did, it didn’t seem to get better.

Right now, I don’t want to give up blogging. I do want to go back to blogging the way I used to do, which was in journal format. I started another blog–very simple, no fuss! Where I will be writing about books and my day-to-day life. I named it Mrs. Kendall, since that’s what the kids at school call me. :)

I hope to see you there but, if not, thank you for all your support over the years. <3

Zombie Training


Zombie 1








We decided to let Nico join the Boy Scouts. He loves it! Loves it so much that he gets dressed, without being told, two hours ahead of time. This past weekend the troop went to Corona for the Green Zone 11 Apocalypse Training (survivalist training with the word zombie in it to sound cool).

Nico loved it. Mikey liked it. The Mister didn’t have a great time.

I couldn’t go because at the last minute I got a coveted appointment with my hair stylist. I hadn’t been in so long that I touched up my roots at home 3 times. When I got out, I texted the Mister that I could head out that way, but he told me to stay put. The event had such promise. Here were some of the items on the agenda.

**Red Cross Class- First Aid/Emergency Prep/CPR
**Water Purification and Outdoor Survival Skills
**Knots and Paracord (open baggie in your bag and
trade ticket for your paracord)
**Naturalist for You- Native American Skills- Shelter
Building, Foraging for Food, Plants for Medicine
**Zombie Research Center- How a Pandemic Happens
and Zombie Information
**Self Defense/Fitness
**Outdoor Cooking- GS Troop 356- vagabond stoves, box,
dutch and solar ovens and fire starters.
**Duct Tape for Survival at Duct Duct Bloom
(take the eye bolt out of your bag)
**Earthquake Information- Cal State Fullerton
**Survival Gear from Household items
**Food Safety- Cee Duckett
**Alternative sources of power- Solar, Pedal Power
Stage Weapons
Special FX Makeup

I mean, right? So cool. According to the Mister, it had the potential but was unorganized. The event planners held it at the same place Corona used to host The Renaissance Pleasure Faire, which is now the Old World Festival.* There was stuff to buy, but the Mister couldn’t find most of the educational stations.

But the boys got to fight zombies, which is always a plus, and I’d like to try it again if they hold it next year. One, because this was a first-time event and there is only room for improvement and refinement. Second, and I’m going to be honest here, I love my husband very much but he doesn’t do well in unorganized crowds. Amusement parks, festivals, malls during holidays or on the weekends, IKEA…

I think for us to get the most out of an activity like this, I needed to be there to be the cheerleader, to remind him that the odds of the boys being kidnapped are low, and to point out that a hot, crowded, dusty field of apocalypse training only feels like the end of the world.

*I don’t know why The Renaissance Pleasure Faire is now in Irwindale, but I suspect the faire, which I hear is huge, outgrew the venue.

All Hallow’s Eve

Doctor Who

If it’s possible to be a grinch outside of Christmas, I suppose I’m one when it comes to Halloween. I can count on one hand the number of times I have carved a pumpkin. It’s something I never really did as a child, so the Mister does it with the boys every year. I find the ghoulish decorations depressing, and the costumes some of the teenage girls wear make me want to pelt them with a collection of hardcover Gloria Steinem books. If I had my way, I’d probably turn out all the lights and read a book. And yet, somehow, we have a party every year.

Except this year. I couldn’t do it, even though Halloween fell on a Friday. I knew that I would come home from an all-day meeting feeling tired and antisocial. I compromised with Mikey and allowed him to invite his two best friends. I had Nico do the same thing, but they already made plans. I told everyone when they arrived that I was tired and probably going to stay home and grade papers while they walked the neighborhood. I ended up passing out candy with the moms, even though I wanted to do nothing more than hide my introverted self under the covers. I ended up having a great time. Sometimes I need a good shove into social situations, and almost always I’m happy to have stepped out of my comfort zone.

The best part of the night had to be when a Weeping Angel came to the door and confronted our 11th Doctor. (Doctor Who reference!)

Rufferee 2


The boys convinced me to get Buddy a Halloween costume. For almost a week I debated returning it, but I’m so glad I didn’t. He looked adorable and was the hit of the neighborhood. He barked and barked inside, so I brought him outside and had him lie down next to me as we handed out candy. He was a little excited for a few minutes, but then he curled up on his bed and slept. When you’re mostly blind, deaf, and have trouble walking, sometimes it feels good to do nothing more than snuggle next to your people.

2014 PJs

My mom established a Halloween pajama tradition that the boys look forward to every year. Like the name strongly suggests, she buys the boys a new pair of pajamas every Halloween in an enormous size they can grow into. They usually have a spooky theme, but now that they are getting older those themed pajamas are hard to find. Everything is dark and plaid for their size. No matter–they loved their new pajamas. Every year they wake up on November 1st and claim they had the best night’s sleep of their life thanks to combed cotton.

I wasn’t planning on being here today, but I thought I would regret not jotting down a few thoughts on one of the last celebrations before the new year. I hope you indulge me.


R Collage

My teacher’s in-service (I was well enough to go) was in Yucaipa at St. Francis X. Cabrini Catholic Church, which has to be one of the most beautiful Catholic churches in the area. It was stunning and huge! As I exited the freeway, I noticed that the famous apple orchards of Oak Glen were to the left. Going to the apple orchards is something I always wanted to do as a family, so that’s what we did on Saturday.

I didn’t know which orchard to pick, so I chose Riley’s because it was the first one that popped up online and looked pretty good. The boys had a great time. There were a ton of activities for them, including tomahawk throwing and archery. I was nervous when it was Mikey’s turn to throw the tomahawk. Mikey is a fair athlete. He gives it 100% and loves sports, but he will never be a professional…football player, for example. I’m more than OK with that, but the mama bear in me didn’t want him to toss a tomahawk in front of a crowd of people and have it land in the dirt 5 feet from the target. I shouldn’t have worried. He listened to the directions quietly and got into position. Then my serious, small-for-his-age 10 year-old let that tomahawk fly. It whistled through the air blade over grip and hit the target with a loud whack. Head shot, I’ll have you know. The crowd made a murmuring sound of surprise and the guy in the tri horn hat looked at me and said, “OK, he’s a natural.” Then Mikey went on to make 5 more shots like tossing dangerous weapons is what he does for fun after he runs out of babies to pinch. Nico, it turns out, is a natural at archery, even though they didn’t have a left-handed bow. I walked away both proud and slightly concerned that we are raising the Dixon brothers from The Walking Dead.

As much fun as it was, we wouldn’t go back to Riley’s. It was far too crowded and the trees were picked bare. We only managed to get a few apples, and only standard varieties you can get at the store. When I came home, I went on Facebook and saw that our priest went apple picking, too! While we were there at the same time, he was at a different orchard. He couldn’t remember the name, but his pictures showed him drowning in bushels of apples. Our orchard was more picturesque, but the man walked away with apples from an apple orchard. Which is, like, the point when you go apple picking. Clearly he had God on his side during the apple orchard selecting process.