It’s Monster Jam time!

My kid loves his truck. He bought it off of CraigsList with his own money. He loves his truck so much that Daddy has been busy tricking it out. His projects have included adding a trunk, seat belts, headlights and tail lights, and today he added a stereo. It even has an input for an MP3 player.

Tricked out kid truck

So, how appropriate was it that while Daddy was busy figuring out the wiring situation for the stereo that I grabbed the kid and took him to see the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam? I’ve never been to anything like this in my life, and it was exactly as I expected it to be.

MonsterJam01Right from the get-go, the trucks were getting some insane air. It was jaw-dropping. The Sleep Train Arena isn’t that big a venue, and the trucks really seemed cramped in there. Despite the limitations, they brought it. They would kind of sneak up to the little dirt hill, and then just gun the engine, and whammo – they’d go flying!

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Getting ready for Monster Jam!

I’m so excited. You know why? I applied to a blogger PR opportunity, my very first one, and my family is now going to the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam on Saturday! We had heard about the show but hadn’t gotten around to picking up tickets. My son is ecstatic. He loves going to performances and this one is going to be like no other!

Photo Credit monsterjam.com / Kenny Lau

Photo Credit monsterjam.com / Kenny Lau

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Lemon-glazed persimmon bars

A number of years ago, my father-in-law’s friend gifted us a huge brown paper bag full of persimmons. I was rather unfamiliar with them at the time, but some research helped me learn about the two basic types and how to use them. You can call me an official persimmon fan now. My 1-year-old daughter absolutely goes nuts for the fuyu variety.

It’s such a lovely fruit. The hachiya persimmon is almost heart-shaped, and hangs on the bare tree like orange ornaments. It’s so pretty, especially at Christmastime.

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Learning to Listen, Learning to Teach

I have spent much of my adulthood talking in front of groups of people. As a zoo educator, I presented to groups of all ages in numbers ranging from 15 to 700. As a dog training instructor, I taught dozens of adults and families on a weekly basis. Other significant public speaking and opportunities to design adult educational programs came with my next job, as well. I did a good job. I followed the example of speakers I enjoyed and respected. My audiences were engaged and learning. I was doing everything right, right?

In the mid-2000’s, I had the opportunity to attend a class that changed everything I knew about public speaking and adult learning. (more…)

Neapolitan Cookies

When my friend Jeanne posted a photo to her Facebook page of these cookies, I knew I had to make them. She mentioned that they contain almond paste. Lord knows I’m a sucker for almond paste. (more…)