Tag Archives: Las Vegas 2019

My Heart It Screams

I flew home a week ago from Las Vegas to Chicago. On the flight and the bus ride home, I had some time to think. I put Duran Duran on shuffle and just let my mind wander. As I listened and thought, I found myself writing down some ideas.

The Music’s Between Us

I must have listened to Duran Duran for about 30 minutes when I made a realization. I put ON Duran Duran’s music. Now, I know that sounds dumb. Of course, I would listen to Duran, right? And I do and have been but it has been a really long time since I just spent time listening to Duran Duran. Really listening. Over the course of the past year, I haven’t been listening to Duran much. At times, I would play a song or two when they would come up on shuffle, but I rarely sought out a particular song or album. I don’t know that I can adequately explain why this is but if I had to make a best guess, I did it to avoid feeling sad. I missed them. I missed the fandom. I missed Rhonda. After the Paper Gods Tour ended, I knew that it would be a long time until they came back. I promised myself that I would be patient (unlike how I was after All You Need Is Now). Then, life happened to get in the way of my usual fandom. This pushed me to separate myself even more from fandom. Now, though, I found myself seeking out Duran. Is this a sign that I’m through that time period that feels like a black hole. I hope so.

What led to this change? Every time I see the band live my love for them and the music is renewed. Those shows in Vegas went by so quickly. I found myself desperately wanting to bottle up the feelings I had so that I could open it later when I needed it between these shows and the next ones. Interestingly enough, as my plane began our descent into Chicago, into a high wind warning of 50-60 mph gusts, I found myself really thinking about my life. This turned a little…uh…morbid as the plane really struggled and I began to think this might be my last, I honestly thought myself, “Well, if this is it, at least I will go down listening to Duran,” which actually gave me some comfort.

We Are Forever

You know what else I loved outside of the shows themselves? I loved seeing people I haven’t seen since the last show in whatever city as we would greet each other with hugs and genuine smiles. I remember walking quickly into the venue on the first night so late after spending time with a fabulous group of people, thinking to myself that this really is like a family reunion as we come from all over to be together and to celebrate. Then, before Rhonda and I could get to our seats, we must have been stopped like every other few feet to either greet more old friends or to meet new people, new friends. That kind of joy wrapped me in a warmth that I didn’t realize how much I missed it until it came back. Then, after the show and hanging out, we returned to our room only to find confetti all over our bathroom floor. Clearly, we were all bringing a bit of the show with us. What did we do? We did what we always have done. We laughed until we couldn’t laugh anymore. I had missed moments like that and hope to have more of them in future.

The past couple of years have been tough. I have worked myself pretty hard, doing what I believe is best for a number of reasons. I have always hoped and still hope that the future, though, contains more of the best moments of last weekend. I don’t think they came as easily as they have in the past, but I’m hopeful that we can get back to that. Heck, I would love to see the emotional challenges of the past couple of years bring something even better. I can envision it. Maybe it will be a UK Trip in 2020. Perhaps, it will be some time, energy and focus on finishing a book project. If we are really lucky, it could be both.

As I look back to last weekend, I’m struck by how much emotional growth can and does happen while on tour, drinking vodka tonics and making fun of Simon like when John needed to bring him a setlist on Friday night’s show. I, for one, feel lucky to have had the moments I had here and look forward to the next time.

-A

Chasing After Rainbows

Did you know there was a show last night?!?

There were DEFINITELY Duranies in the house, the two of us included! Today’s v-log covers the show, the music, the fun, and the fans! This outrageously wild weekend isn’t over yet, either. Today we are meeting at the CliQue bar (or as our naughty roommates call it – the Clitoris bar!!) today at 5pm for an OFFICIAL DAILY DURANIE MEET UP! See you there!!

Another crazy and slightly silly Daily Duranie show review!!

See you tonight! -A & R

It’s Vegas, Baby!

We are here, and we’ve filmed a blog to celebrate!! So far, it has been a weekend of getting reacquainted, relaxing, and resting, but we found the time to shoot a quick update.

Cant wait for the show, hope to see you there…and if you can find the time to stop by CliQue tomorrow before the show – we will be hanging out!

Until then….

Not our best vlog…but probably our shortest!!

-A & R

And I Cut So Far Before I Had to Say

I am so stupid. Well, I don’t really mean that but I do sometimes wonder what the heck I was thinking. Then, I question why I feel the way I do and remind myself of what is logical. I’m sure all of that was clear as mud. Let me explain.

These February Duran Duran shows were announced in the fall. It was the heart of the campaign season as I remember getting the tweet notification on my phone while I was working at the temporary campaign office. As soon as I saw that Duran was playing in Vegas, I texted Rhonda and returned to reporting numbers and keeping track of volunteers. While I was all for going and was excited that she, too, was all for it, I couldn’t think much about it. I was drowning in campaign materials. At the time, I assumed that the election would be long over so going wouldn’t be a problem.

Fast forward to now. February. Months later. While THAT election is over, another one is looming. As I have shared on here before, I’m working on a campaign for a local candidate. On Tuesday, there will be a primary. My candidate will make it through as there is only one other candidate still in the running. (The third candidate dropped out.) The results next week will give us the best idea of where the race stands as polling is not an option for a campaign of our size. This makes me nervous. Has my campaign plan been effective? How much more do we need to do after that to either stay up or catch up? This weekend is full of activities to reach as many voters as possible. Likewise, there are campaign events on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. While I’m already feeling pressure to get everything done and to be effective, this adds some significant stress.

Beyond the worry about Tuesday’s result, I find myself also concerned about work. My students are about to start a big project that needs a little of time on my part to get it organized and to get them started. I am concerned that I’m so distracted that I am going to forget some key pieces. On top of that, my students have been…well…not super angelic. I worry that my room won’t be in one place when I return or that there will be massive bloodshed spilled. (I am exaggerating…slightly.) Of course, things are also piling up at my house. Bills have been sitting on my coffee table for far too long. The dishwasher is over flowing and my cat wonders if I sometimes don’t like him because I forget to see if he needs food.

Despite the need to deal with any and all of the above, what do I want to do?! I want to write up the agenda for the tour or see what needs to be done when it comes to transportation to the hotel. I want to watch Duran video’s from the show in Miami. Questions like will there be merchandise are wanting my full and undivided attention. Alas, I push through all that to get back to my to do list as I wonder if I should even be going on tour right now. The campaign only goes until April. My students could definitely use a more focused, less exhausted me. On top of that, I am concerned that the guilt over having gone will result in less fun and me not being able to really be in the moment. I don’t want that.

Part of me says that I should just cancel. I’m too all over the place to get myself in a state where I feel like I could leave everything behind for a few days. I even wonder if that is the mature, professional thing to do. Then, I stop this line of thinking. The candidate I am working towards knows that I won’t be around. She supports me going. My household chores will wait and I have a great sub coming in for me at work. They might even do better with her than with me. I need to stop this sense of guilt from even forming. After all, don’t I deserve a break? Am I not worthy to have fun sometimes? I think it is fair to say that I work hard (and a lot). Even during my snow days, I worked. I have worked each and every day since November except on Christmas. I need this break. I will be better off for having it. I will be a better teacher and a better campaign manager.

So, why do I have to battle this line of thinking? Is it that women are taught by society that we have to take care of everything and that when we do something for ourselves we are being selfish? I definitely think that is part of it. I feel bad because being on tour is about me, my good times, my enjoyment. Could it also be that a part of me has bought into the notion that fandom isn’t important or that there would be something wrong with me if I’m too into it? That could be, too. I’m only human. I could have internalized all that. I also think part of it is simply that when I get involved with something, I care about the outcome a lot. It is what makes me a good teacher and a good organizer for political actions/movements.

All that said, I’m going to be done worrying. Yes, I have a massive list of what needs to get done before I leave Wisconsin on Thursday morning. It will be an intense week, but I am pretty sure that the reward at the end will be worth it.

-A

Live Beside It, Laughing Till You’re Crying

You might have heard that Wisconsin has had quite a winter. Actually, it started out quiet and very mild and then it took a turn. We have experienced almost the entire season’s snowfall in a few weeks on top of having beyond frigid temperatures. This has resulted in six snow days. I have been teaching for a long time and we have never had as much. In fact, the number is double the maximum number of days we had in the past. What the heck. Anyway, when I have been at work, there has been a lot of discussion about what to do with our curriculum now that we have a lot less days to work with. This led to a funny discussion.

Before I dive into the details, I have to provide some context. When I first started teaching at this school, the entire United States History Team consisted of women, except one. Even our assistant principal was a woman. Over time, this slowly changed. Now, I look around and realize that I’m the only woman among all men. How did that happen?! Luckily, the men I work with are generally good guys (not that I would ever tell them that!). They are well-aware that I’m a pretty outspoken colleague when it comes to issues surrounding women’s rights and women’s voices. (I do teach Women’s Studies, after all.) While they respect that and do try to check themselves, they also cannot resist to give me a hard time every once in awhile.

Earlier this week, we went over the daily topics for the next few weeks. By doing that, we realized that Wednesday the 20th would not be a teaching day. On that date, our juniors take the ACT. While many teachers proctor the exam, the 9th grade teachers like myself have a meeting. Then, the afternoon is usually open for us to work. This led me to literally shout out in glee. Is it because I don’t want to teach? No. It has to do with perfect timing! The free afternoon will give me time to get the plans for the substitute teacher ready. It will ease my stress at work tremendously.

You can imagine my colleagues shock when they heard me squeal. They know that I’m not usually one to enjoy teacher work days. This forced me to explain that I will be gone on the 21st and 22nd while still giving minimal information about where and why I will be out. It isn’t that I’m ashamed of my Duranie activities but knowing my colleagues, they would twist it, somehow, to give me a hard time. Finally, after too many questions, I told them that I would be in Vegas for Duran. Their response was super predictable. One of them said, “There you go again. Letting your life to be dedicated by a bunch of guys,” before laughing his head off. I laughed, too, especially after I threw a pencil at him.

I wasn’t even mad by the comment but clearly he doesn’t really understand fandom or at least my fandom. Yes, the subject of my fandom is Duran Duran, a bunch of guys. That’s true. Yes, I’m traveling to Vegas to see them live. Absolutely not a lie. While it might seem like my life revolves around them, it doesn’t. While I adore Duran shows and believe that seeing them live in the best way I could spend two hours ever, they are more the excuse, the icing on the cake. Yep. Duran Duran is the best excuse I have to get together with my friends, away from home.

My Duran Duran weekends do consists of hours watching, singing and screaming during those two hour concerts. More than that, though, they consist of spending time with my female friends. There is something that is good for my soul when I am surrounded with other women. While we might have really different lives, opinions, perspectives, etc, we do all have some shared experiences simply by being women and then by being Duran Duran fans. It feels safe.

For those of you who do not know me, let me share a little secret. I very much like to be in control as it makes me feel safe and protected. When I’m around my female friends, there is less of a need for that. Instead, I can let me hair down, so to speak, and just have a good time. This is a welcome relief from the day-to-day experience of what I call “normal.” Besides, who else can I laugh with when it comes to talking about how the aging fanbase needs different touring items now that we are in our 40s? Who else can I giggle with when we begin to discuss some of the band’s more interesting fashion choices or dance moves?

So, in reality, going on tour isn’t really about five guys in a band. No, it is about having a girls weekend spending time doing what we love best.

-A

VIP Packages, Homework Reminder and More!

Can I go to Vegas tomorrow? Yes, I’m anxious to hang with my friends and see the band but more than that, I am ready for something other than the polar vortex that I’m currently living in. Yes, Madison is getting pounded. Yesterday, we had a record low of -23 as in 23 degrees below zero. Tonight and tomorrow, we are due for a bad snow storm. I’m seeing amounts of 6 to 9 or 12 to 15 inches of snow depending on the report before we experience wind chills as low as -55. I literally feel like I live in the Arctic. So, as I refresh my weather apps and school closings page, I will focus instead on some fun Duran related ideas.

VIP Packages

Up until this weekend, I hadn’t given much thought to what is included in the VIP packages for these upcoming February shows. I knew, of course, that they contained Duran related merchandise but I was not sure what was included. In fact, if someone had asked a week ago what it contained, I might have said it had the same stuff as the Paper Gods Tour. I would have been wrong.

The VIP package have three items: headphones, a bag and a travel mug. Yeah, I know. None of that sounds super exciting but I promise you that there are some neat features. Of course, all of the items have the most recent Duran logo as you can see here:

I already have the travel mug and use it frequently. (Yes, I take it to work.) The best feature? I love that it keeps my coffee warm for a long time especially when I’m at work and often don’t get to my coffee for hours after the day starts. As for the headphones, I have yet to use them but I’m excited to try them out. If you have them, how are they? What do you think about their quality of sound? Durability?

The best part, though, in my opinion is the bag. Now, I know what a lot of you are thinking. Haven’t they sent enough canvass bags? Sure. They have included a lot of them but this one is super cool. If you look closely, the words are song titles. Duran Duran song titles. These titles are in order from the debut, self-titled album all the way to Paper Gods. I love it. I am actually thinking about framing it so I can use it as a poster of sorts. The red, white and black theme works for me, too.

Homework Reminder

Next week, you all have a “homework assignment” of sorts due. What am I talking about? Well, I assigned a little task that is due on February 2nd. I am looking for each and every one of you to send in a list of the 10 most representative Duran Duran songs, according to you! You can include any Duran track or even any side or solo project song, if you want. The list you send in can include singles, album tracks, covers, demos, whatever. It doesn’t matter as long as you think the songs show off Duran Duran the best. When you are done with your “homework,” you can send it in to our email (dailyduranie@gmail.com), or through a private message on our Facebook or Twitter. I thank all of you who have already sent in your lists!

Unofficial Meet-up

As I wrap up this little blog post, I turn my attention back to the shows in Vegas. While Rhonda and I haven’t been able to plan an official meet-up in Vegas, we do plan on being around. We get in Thursday afternoon (hopefully!) so by Thursday night, we will be hitting the town. Do watch our social media then about our locations as we would love to have everyone come and hang out with us or at least come by and say hi!

On that note, I’m off to check the most recent weather forecast. Wish me luck and send me warmth. Something tells me that I’m going to need it!

-A

I’ve Been Now Sauntering

Hey, do you remember that time in 1984 when New Moon on Monday reached #10 on the US charts?? Believe it or not, that happened on today’s date, just a mere 35 years ago.

It takes me nowhere

Well, that should start your Monday off on the right footing of nostalgia along with the ever-familiar feeling of “How in the hell can that have been 35 years ago? I’m barely 30.” Yep!

I feel you, readers. Me and my back totally get you this morning. Oh boy, do I. My Advil bottle is within reach today. (For my out-of-US peeps – it’s ibuprofen. Think Paracetamol.)

I need a reason

I see people beginning to fantasize about set lists. Usually the band asks a question about songs off of a specific album, as they did this morning. Today they asked about favorite songs off of Big Thing, and tweeters responded. I saw more than a couple musing about whether or not they might be thinking about including something from the album on the list.

Some veteran fans and/or concert goers may scoff, saying that the set list isn’t going to change. Still others chastise, suggesting that everyone should be thankful that they’re playing at all.

It is actually possible to be thrilled and thankful that the band is playing a show somewhere you can attend, and still have hopes over what one may hear and see while in the audience. Nobody is slighting anyone else simply because they’re hoping to hear New Moon on Monday, or Planet Roaring, or whatever else happens to be on someone’s wish list.

Call it treason

For the most part, I don’t worry about the set list these days. I go to a lot of shows – as many as I’m able budget-wise, and willing to travel to attend. I had to get used to the idea that the set list doesn’t change that much.

However, it is also 100% true that at one time, I’d openly complain and lament over the song choices. I guess I learned that for me, in the grand scheme of things, it just doesn’t matter that much. I thoroughly enjoy the concerts regardless of what they play. By the same token, I also accept that for other people, it matters more. I have friends who only go to a few shows each tour because in their opinion, it isn’t worth it to go to more than that. They don’t need to see the same stage, same costuming, same set more than a few times. I totally respect that.

However thrilled I am to see the band, I will still occasionally ponder what songs might be switched out for other. The February shows are between albums, and even if I weren’t going, I’d still be curious. Isn’t it part of the fun?

Too many things, too much to know

On the safe side, I don’t think anyone should expect more than maybe a couple of songs to be different between the shows during the Paper Gods tour and now. The band tends to favor their hits, and there are plenty of them. I think they like to cater to the portion of the audience that comes to an occasional show every once in a while, than those of us who are diehard attendees. I can’t really blame them for that.

Duran Duran wants people up and dancing, not bored because they’ve never heard “You Kill Me with Silence”, or “Skin Divers”. That leaves precious little time for songs that the vast majority of the audience doesn’t know that well. I think that is the main reason why we only hear a new song or two thrown in over the course of a tour, like it or not.

Songs like “Hold Back the Rain”, “Friends of Mine”, “Careless Memories”, and even “New Religion” are fan-favorites. Maybe they’d include them in the right spots. Yet, they’re not so obscure that people would sit down, sucking the energy right out of the venue. There’s nothing worse than losing that type of momentum during a show, and it is difficult to get back on track when it happens. So I think they stick with these types of songs when they want to throw in something. Many, if not most fans, know the words and are so exuberant when they begin playing them that their vitality makes up for those who might not be as familiar.

Sometimes, they break out something from a newer album that they haven’t given a ton of playing time. Out of seemingly nowhere, they played “Only in Dreams” a few times during the Paper Gods tour, for example. So maybe they play their standards (read: hits), a couple of fan-favorites, and then one newer one or so. That’s three, maybe four songs out of the 16-18 songs they’ve been doing. I’ll let you all debate whether that’s enough or not, and see my own way out.

It’s us who make the noise

Amanda and I absolutely love to screw with the band by tweeting out our own hastily thrown together set list (sometimes even on paper napkins written with a marker!). We cackle and laugh the entire time as we tweet it out, full-well knowing there’s nary a song on the list that has a chance of being included. In turn, we also know that we’d have a far better chance of actually being accurate by just guessing a song or two. Even so, what fun is there in that?!?

I don’t know if I have a dream set-list these days as much as there are songs that I’d love to hear them play again. I’d really like to hear “Land” or Palomino” from Big Thing, but I know they’re not really songs that people can dance to, so I don’t expect them. “Red Carpet Massacre”, “All You Need is Now”, or “Planet Roaring” fit the bill for a live show far better, but who knows what they’ll choose. Hearing and seeing them play a song live that I haven’t for a while will be exciting. I’m not sure if it really matters to me what they play – I’ll be happy to see them throw in something new, no matter what it is.

-R

‘Tis the Season

Yes, I suppose that is a strange title to use since it is almost mid-January but it feels appropriate to me. Why is that? There are a couple of big reasons for this. First, Rhonda and I finally exchanged Christmas gifts. Second, those Vegas shows are right around the corner, which means not only will we get to see some shows but also have an opportunity for some of our more common antics…

Over the course of my friendship with Rhonda, we have come up with some pretty good gifts for each other. Unsurprisingly many of our gifts to each other relate or connect to Duran Duran or being Duranies. This year was no different. Rhonda got me a really amazing necklace that looks like a cool pendant while at the same time says the names of the band members over and over again. I look forward to wearing it as I assume that I’ll be wearing it a lot on tour! The one item that I got Rhonda that I think fits the best with what will be coming up is a little 8 ounce flask that I gave her. It is even personalized in that it is the property of the Daily Duranie. Ha!

As Rhonda and I chatted (or skyped as the case may be), it became clear that the time to give that band a hard time is coming. In fact, the first show in Vegas is 6 weeks from today. 6 weeks to give those five guys a hard time. We cannot wait. What do we mean by that? Well, the best explanation might be to review some of our finer moments of the Paper Gods Tour (and more).

Our Setlists

Suggested set list for Hollywood Bowl

Now, we have said that we will not criticize the band over the songs that they decide to play. We will be okay if the setlist is exactly the same as the last show we saw. There will not complaints or long diatribes about why setlist changes matter. Nope. We promise to be good. For the most part. Even though we won’t complain, we still might offer some suggestions in the form of a setlist. I’m certain that the band will appreciate having us come up with songs and order for them. You’re welcome, Duran Duran.

Pants

Truth be told, there were a lot of sentences written, video blogs recorded and more that focused in on the band’s outfits. I, especially, was drawn to talking about John’s pants. Now, some might say that he made it darn easy to tease him since they were so noticeably short. Then, of course, when the picture above appeared, it provided us a little challenge to find our own pants. This is what we came up with. Good times, indeed.

Enthusiasm

Chula Vista

Once upon a time, Rhonda and I sang our hearts out in between our screams and comments welcoming people to the band. We were so into the show that people in front of us turned around to comment about how enthusiastic we were. I certainly look forward to being so in the moment that I appreciate every look, every silly dance move, every ridiculous facial expression and more. We will certainly let them know what we love and what we find hilarious. Oh yes, we plan to bring it and we expect the band to bring it right back in whatever fashion that they choose.

Can’t hit me, Simon!!!

Yes, this might be a risky move since we are center for both shows but we are willing to face that music. Someday, we just might bust out an umbrella or raincoat at just the right moment say…during White Lines. No one will be able to say that we did not provide a warning.

On that note, I cannot wait to see what will come next. Will there be more lime green shoes? I cannot even imagine but I am looking forward to it all!

-A


The Lights Turn On

Today is the final day of my “vacation.” I put vacation in quotes because it has not really been a vacation in the traditional sense. No, I did not go to work, at least at the main paying job. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t work. In fact, I took one day off. One. Christmas was the only day that I did not do work for school, for my teaching career. I had a lot of grading to do. It was important to get as much of this grading done as possible for a couple of big reasons. First, the end of the semester is quickly approaching. This means that not only will I have to enter quarter grades but I will soon be giving finals. I will have to grade those, too. Second, I have an extremely busy schedule coming up as I am also working for a campaign for the spring election. This means that I have lots of tasks to do and many meetings and events to attend. Next week, for example, the only days I don’t have campaign related activities are Monday, Thursday and Friday. I’m already tired. Am I sad that this break is coming to an end? Extremely. I could have used a day more or five just to chill.

On top of grading on top of grading, I did get my house really clean, which felt so good as it had been months since that has happened. I also got some other household chores done like cleaning the coffee pot. More importantly to this blog, I finally purchased a plane ticket to Vegas. Of course, I practically have to sell a kidney in order to afford it but I assure myself that it will be worth it. And it will.

This weekend in February literally happens right after the primary here in Wisconsin, which marks the half way point of this campaign I’m working on. What a perfect time to get away! I am hoping that it act as a reward for the hard work so far and give me the break necessary to regroup, recharge to finish out the job. Why do I need a break with shows? Why couldn’t I just take a day or two to relax? Well, did I mention that I spent my entire winter “break” working? That should answer that question. If I am at home or anywhere near home, I will work. It is in my nature to do so. Therefore, I need a serious intervention to get me to stop. The only thing that will do that is a tour or in this case, a mini-tour.

I am not sure exactly why tours or mini-tours provide the complete escape for me but they do. Is it a change of scenery? I don’t think that is it. I have gone to visit friends or family out of state and I still take grading or other work with me. Is it being surrounded by friends? Again, I don’t think that does it. If I was really worried about getting tasks done, I would work on them even around friends. I have done it before. If I had to make a guess at what does it, I would say it is the whole thing. I am away from home, sure. I am also with friends but in a setting in which the band is playing. I have heard many interviews in which John Taylor has said something along the line that when they are on tour it is all about the show. This is a sentiment that I can relate to. When I’m on tour, it is all about that. It is like something all encompassing. My senses are filled with sights and sounds related to having fun, seeing my favorite band, and more. My thoughts become fixed on to fandom related activities and ideas.

Therefore, I’m looking forward to the real break in my working action. If that was not enough, I’m anxious to reconnect with my friends and work on meeting and getting to know others. Speaking of that, it appears that we will be in town on that Thursday night. I’m sure that we will be partying it up somewhere. Watch this space along with our social media to see where and when, if you would like to join us!

-A

Happy New Year 2019

Since today is a holiday, I (Rhonda) am writing to wish everyone a wonderful New Year from both Amanda and myself. May 2019 be filled with hope, joy, love, great health, fantastic friends, and amazing music.

We hope to see many of you in Las Vegas when the band performs there in February. We haven’t been able to plan a full convention for that weekend, but we are still hoping to pull together a party. Watch this space. If anyone is able to lend a hand or give a little time to make it happen – drop us a line. We’d certainly appreciate the help!

I don’t really do New Year resolutions. There have been goals for past years, but I don’t really have writing plans, or career aspirations right now. This year, I’m hoping to focus on getting my family settled, and using the year as a sort of personal rediscovery and relaunch! Rest assured that I’ll still be blogging about Duran Duran. We’ll see where the year takes us!

Have a wonderful New Year’s Day. As you read this, I’m making breakfast and watching the Rose Parade with my kids. Later, I think we’re going to take a hike on one of the nearby trails. I also need to take down holiday decorations, and then I have to get ready for school to begin tomorrow.

For the first time since I began homeschooling, we are going to be doing it all at home on our own. In the past, my youngest has gone to a learning or resource center twice a week. That’s given her a chance to have a break from me and make friends. I’m hoping to eventually get back to that kind of schedule (if not have her go back to a traditional school), but at least for now, it’s all home, all the time.

Not sure if I should be asking for people to send vodka or prayers…or both. I’ll let you know how that’s going in the coming weeks…

Cheers, everyone!!

-R