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#WeekendCoffeeShare: Gluten-Free Goodies and READING!

wordswag_15073188796611453091488.pngWeekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!

Grab a cup of coffee and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?
All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations! The link will be open from October 20th at 7am (Pacific Time) through October 23rd at 7pm (Pacific Time) to give us a good range of “weekend”!

Welcome friends!

I’ll invite you to join me for coffee this week over some delicious Gluten-Free baked goods. Really, they have to be delicious — I’m not a fan of that cardboard/healthy-tasting Gluten-Free nonsense. I make spectacular cinnamon rolls! If I have to eat Gluten-Free I want to at least get to enjoy it!

Why the GF goodies this week? Because I’m excited about my weekend plans! Saturday I’ll spend a portion of the morning at a Gluten-Free Festival! This is the third year I’ll be attending, it looks like there may be a few new vendors this year and I’m looking forward to seeing what products might be coming out and tasting all the samples.

Look at all the swag from last year!

Last year I was pretty inspired, so I’m hoping to come home afterwards and get some food prep and cooking done. I definitely need to do some – my prepared lunch options are quickly dwindling, and I don’t usually have the energy to do much food-work during the week.

I might share that I’ve been dealing the past few weeks with a pain flare-up that I think is finally getting under control. It’s strange for me to adjust to the fact that random instances of pain are just to be expected, but I’m thankful for a rheumatologist who is happy to work with me and communicates well via email. This latest thing was a stiffness, followed by joint pain, in my dominant hand pointer finger.

Let me tell you, I hadn’t realized just how much I use that finger in every-day-work until it hurt to bend it or have pressure on the knuckles! I’ve been doing a lot of writing – and with NaNo coming up in a few weeks will be doing even more typing — so it’s nice that things are starting to subside. Would hate to be unable to participate this year due to pain! And, sure, I could dictate the thing but… I just don’t think the same when I’m narrating something as I do when I’m writing it. I learned that a few years back when my roommate kindly typed up a paper for me when I was working on my Master’s Degree and my tendinitis was flaring up something fierce.

Fun side-effect of that time — he now probably recalls more about that paper than I do.

This weekend is also Dewey’s 24-hour ReadAThon! So between the gluten-free-browsing and the potential cooking, I’m also going to be READING! Clearly, I won’t be going for the full 24-hours, but I have a little stack of books that I dug out of my piles to read through. I need to start cutting down on my collection, so these ones seem good ones to read in hopes of maybe then being able to part with them.

Or, you know, maybe I’ll bury myself in Allison Maruska’s Seventh Seed — her new book that’ll be launching on the 24th! I got an Advanced Reader Copy and am super-excited to get through it!
Wow, when I started sharing I hadn’t realized how much I’m fitting into this weekend! Best get moving on it — what are you up to this weekend?


#TakeAStand Against Domestic Violence – Stories

The stories about Intimate Partner Violence are hard to hear. But it’s important that the stories get told, that people listen, really listen, to the tales these people have to tell. Listen and honor their experience, and help to give them a chance to share their voices – as they feel safe to do.

Like many things, the more we keep it quite, the more we shuffle it off as “something we don’t talk about,” the worse it can become.  Despite the age-old adage, Ignoring something does not make it go away.


Here are just a few articles that share some individuals experiences with Domestic Violence.
“Why Didn’t You Just Leave?” Six Domestic Violence Survivors Explain Why It’s Never That Simple.

The Most Dangerous Time: Five Women Tell Their Stories of Leaving an Abusive Relationship.

Stories from The National Domestic Violence Hotline

Survivor Stories from Fight Against Domestic Violence


#WeekendCoffeeShare: Rainy Days!


Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!

Grab a cup of coffee and share with us!  What’s been going on in your life?  What are your weekend plans?  Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?

All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations!

I’m so happy you joined me for coffee again this weekend! Today I’m inviting you to sit with me near the roaring fire, enjoying the warm beverage of your choice. It’s finally cooling down and raining here, so we’re firing up the fireplace and enjoying that delightful wood-smoke smell. The good one, not the one that we kept smelling this summer that meant that everything was on fire.

It’s raining outside now, and I love it. I wasn’t so happy to be commuting in the rain, the bus ride is a bit less pleasant when everyone is soaking wet, but I adore it when I can enjoy the weather from the warm and dry confines of my house.

There really hasn’t been a lot going on this week, just working away and doing some other work on the side. I have started to think some about the story I’m going to write for NaNoWriMo – just bits and pieces of ideas. I’m trying, really hard, to not commit myself to any specifics for the story. My own writing experience – particularly when I’m trying to just get back into the flow of things – is that the more restrictions and expectations I put on myself the more stifled I’m likely to feel.  So all ideas get jotted down in a word document for me to reference if I find myself stuck or in need of some refreshed ideas.

My upcoming weekend is going to be pretty chill. I’m getting together with my Dad and Step-Mom for breakfast on Saturday, and have my standing Game Group Sunday night — but beyond that I’m hoping to get some cleaning, organizing (and maybe even getting rid of things) done.  I REALLY want to make some progress on a few piles that have been sitting on desks in my room since last winter!

What are you up to this weekend?


Banned Books Week: George

George, by Alex Gino


“Be who you are. When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she’s not a boy. She knows she’s a girl.” (Goodreads)

This book has been awarded a Stonewall Award and a Lambda Literary award.  It tells about George, a fourth grade student who everyone thinks is a boy, but who knows she is a girl.  Told in a close perspective from George’s point of view, using female pronouns throughout the book, it follows George through a portion of her school year – a very small portion really.  But an important one, as she begins to actually share with her family and closest friends her true self.

This book has been banned and challenged because of the main character – a transgender child – and “sexuality was not appropriate at elementary levels.”

I loved this book, and I can imagine that it could be powerful for a kid to read it. For kids struggling to be able to express their true selves, regardless of what challenge may be getting in the way of that. And I can’t even begin to imagine how powerful it could be for a child who is struggling with being identified by the gender they were assigned at birth, when they know in their heart that they are not that gender, to be able to read a story about a kid like them.

I came across just a few articles about this book – one from NPR with a talk to Alex Gino, who speaks about the story, how they related to it, and how they would have named it differently now.

“If I were going to name [the book] now, I would not have done that,” Gino says. “Because it is the assigned name, not her chosen name. When I started the book in 2003, the name of the book was Girl George — which was clearly an homage to Boy George. And then when Scholastic got it, one of the first things they did was, they cut off ‘Girl’ because they wanted to open up the audience. And I didn’t even notice, in all of the things that happened, that I have effectively dead-named my main character.”

Office of Intellectual Freedom (American Library Association) Blog article on George.

Article from Christian Today talking about the reason behind one of the Challenges to George.

Banned Books Week – Looking Local

I decided to explore a little bit some of the censorship that happens right in my own backyard.  The Oregon Intellectual Freedom Clearinghouse (OIFC) has some great resources, including a list of all library material challenges in Oregon going back to 1988 (the current list runs to June 30, 2017).

In the 2016-2017 academic calendar (July through June) there were 20 reported challenges in Oregon, from six different public libraries.  The challenges were to books, videos, magazines, and sound recordings.

“Included among the challenges are seven videos that a patron removed from a library’s shelves and hid inside the library. Library staff found some of the videos and purchased replacements for others, according to their Collection Development Policy. The videos all had LGBT+ characters featured in the cover art. The Library Director identified the patron and learned that they were hiding the videos in an attempt to restrict other patrons’ access to LGBT+ films and prevent “potential harm” to children. The Library Director explained the library’s collection development policy, responsibility to represent diversity, and non-endorsement of materials/ideas in the collection to the patron. According to the library’s Code of Conduct, the patron was trespassed for six months.” (OIFC Annual Report)

What’s interesting to look at with some of these challenges is that the challenges come from many different viewpoints.  For example, the movie “2 Days in Paris” was challenged by a patron due to “anti-gay content.” While the movie “Beautiful Things” was included in the incident mentioned above, where a patron objected to the LGBT content.

The books that made it onto the challenged list in Oregon this year?

The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls, by Clair Legrand
Objection: Violence (Patron asked it to be moved from the juvenile section to the teen section due to the content and themes).
Outcome: Retained.

George, by Alex Gino
Objection: Sexual (unsuited to age)
Outcome: Retained

Pretty Little Liars: Ali’s Pretty Little Lies. By Sara Shepard
Objection: Values (offensive language)
Outcome: Retained

Curious George by H.A. Rey
Objection: 1: Values (Racism) 2: Other (Unsuited to age).
Outcome: Retained