Sunday, December 31, 2017

Resist: 2017 in review

Since January 2017, I've made political action a priority in my life.

Politics and socialist ideals have always been important to me. I've attended rallies and canvassed and made my voice known since I was a child. I even held an elected public office in high school to advance the Democratic cause.

But life changed dramatically on Nov. 8, 2016, when that retched man "won" the election.

There are no words strong enough to describe the sadness, disappointment, anger, etc., I feel about the Trump administration - and the fact that people I thought shared my values voted him into office - and continue to support him. It literally makes me sick to my stomach.

I've been told that I'm misguided and that we simply need to pray for the president and all will be well. Oh, and "it won't be that bad." Bullshit. Every single day, I see rights stripped from my friends and family, I see marginalized people hurt even more, I see greed and profits put above all else, I see beloved, sacred public lands sold to the highest bidder, I see millions of people lose their health insurance, I see sexual assault rewarded. It disgusts me, and I will not stand by and remain silent.

Here are just some of the actions, meetings, rallies, and marches I've attended since Jan. 20, 2017:

West Hills Friends opened its doors for a vigil on Inauguration Day. As I was (am!) in deep mourning, I thought this was a good way to start the day. It was a moving experience with guided meditation and quiet time. 

I love this sign that hangs in the church lobby:
In the afternoon, I went downtown to a huge rally in Pioneer Courthouse Square. Speaker after speaker inspired the crowd to fight. My sign: Protest is Patriotic.
After the rally, we took to the streets. It was powerful and cathartic and life-giving. We yelled and screamed and chanted words I won't repeat in this forum:
The next day was the Women's March in Downtown Portland. Love Trumps Hate:
Sunday brought a vigil to Newberg, where many from our church and others gathered to show our love for the community:
This sign went up in our yard:
Food for a cause:
Eryn and I wore our "I'm glad you're my neighbor" shirts to show our students love:
Huge public forum at Tigard's Muslim Education Trust:
I was in Phoenix for a February marathon and joined a protest at the statehouse:
Brad and I attended a day-long resistance training in Portland:
Signs ready to go!
Lake Oswego counter-protest:
Rally outside Portland's ICE building:

Native American rally:
Mni Wiconi (Water is Life)
Immigration rally in Woodburn:
Tax March:
When my church decided to embrace an anti-LGBTQ+ statement, this became my church shirt:
March for Science at the capitol in Salem:
Fighting for sanctuary city status at Tigard City Hall:
I work to change the world every day with these beautiful students:
OSEA Conference 2017:
Rise Up 5K:
Pride Parade:
Stand with Charlottesville:
PCHRP rally - Portland Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines:
Vigil in Vancouver:
Eclipse Hate rally:
After, we took to the streets, taking over two bridges and holding a vigil in the middle of the Morrison Bridge. This was a very emotional, powerful event:
Save DACA:
Counter-protest in Portland:
The action moved to Vancouver, and I spent hours facing off with these guys:
We took over a Trump supporter's hotel lobby:
Putting our money to good use:
Sen. Ron Wyden comes to Tigard High School:
OSEA leadership summit:
Trans Day of Remembrance Vigil:
There have also been countless committee meetings, action groups, planning sessions, donations, e-mails, petitions, and campaigning. And it will all continue as long as this wretched man is president and his administration continues destroying everything that's important to me and those I love. This is my pledge.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Dress-up days

A fairly loose dress code is one perk of my job. Some days I dress up. Other days I dress down. And some days, I wear my PJs!

A few times a year, we have spirit weeks with specific dress-up days. The week before Christmas break included PJ Day:
The McKee women bought these on our Black Friday shopping extravaganza for Christmas morning. We decided to debut them at THS... because how could we not?! :) 

I think this was "winter wear" day. Mom had hers on, too, but we didn't get a group shot:
Thursday was "family photo day", and my students decided on their own that we should all wear flannels for our family photo. Unfortunately, one of our buses had a minor fender bender (no one injured!) that delayed the return of half our students. So we took two photos:
My favorite thing is that it was THEIR idea :)

My job is so fun!!!

And... because my school life is pretty much the same as my out-of-school life, here's my family on Christmas Eve:

Mom and Eryn bought these babies for $7 each the day after Christmas last year. So rad! :)

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

No. 50

Does it get any better than this?
No. 50 was M.C. Beaton's A Highland Christmas, finished with my cat, the Christmas tree, and a fire in the fireplace :)

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!!

About that time Caesar Augustus ordered a census to be taken throughout the Empire. This was the first census when Quirinius was governor of Syria. Everyone had to travel to his own ancestral hometown to be accounted for. So Joseph went from the Galilean town of Nazareth up to Bethlehem in Judah, David's town, for the census. As a descendant of David, he had to go there. He went with Mary, his fiancĂ©e, who was pregnant. 

While they were there, the time came for her to give birth. She gave birth to a son, her firstborn. She wrapped him in a blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room in the hostel.

There were sheepherders camping in the neighborhood. They had set night watches over their sheep. Suddenly, God's angel stood among them and God's glory blazed around them. They were terrified. The angel said, "Don't be afraid. I'm here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Savior has just been born in David's town, a Savior who is Messiah and Master. This is what you're to look for: a baby wrapped in a blanket and lying in a manger." 

At once the angel was joined by a huge angelic choir singing God's praises:

Glory to God in the heavenly heights,
Peace to all men and women on earth who please him.

As the angel choir withdrew into heaven, the sheepherders talked it over. "Let's get over to Bethlehem as fast as we can and see for ourselves what God has revealed to us." They left, running, and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. Seeing was believing. They told everyone they met what the angels had said about this child. All who heard the sheepherders were impressed.

Mary kept all these things to herself, holding them dear, deep within herself. The sheepherders returned and let loose, glorifying and praising God for everything they had heard and seen. It turned out exactly the way they'd been told!

Luke 2:1-20 The Message

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Downtown holiday adventure

Eryn and I had so much fun this summer exploring San Francisco that we decided to explore our own city over winter break. The Dec. 20 forecast looked fairly good, so we set out for some fun.

First stop was dropping my car for a seasonal tire swap at Discount Tire on Highway 99W in Tigard. The bus stopped right out front:
Oh, the 12 bus. We spent many hours on this line when we worked downtown. 
We hopped off in the Portland State University district and walked toward the street car. I wonder what this means:

Oh, look... a hidden park and fountain! Too bad it was too cold for the fountain:
We hopped the next street car (first time for both of us!) and rode across the Tilikum Crossing: 
The plan was to ride the entire loop around the city. But we spotted Next Adventure and decided to hop off for a bit of shopping: 
The street car comes about every 15 minutes, so we jumped back on after perusing the store's offerings: 
Back where we started, we decided to check out the other "hidden parks and fountains": 
Pettygrove Park: 
Meantime, Mom finished her doctor's appointment and met us downtown. We set off north on foot, stopping first at Pioneer Courthouse Square:  

It was news time: 
First order of business was lunch. Mom led us to The Oyster Bar: 
Right across the street was Voodoo Doughnuts. It was the first time for Mom and Eryn: 

Then on to the Festival of the Last Minute at Saturday Market: 
The morning clouds and drizzle parted, and we thought finishing the loop on foot was a good idea. We walked north across the Steel Bridge and then returned south on the Eastbank Esplande. A fire boat put on a show for us: 
Remembering Mayor Vera Katz: 
A quick potty stop at OMSI: 
We loved seeing this in the window:

Back across the Tilikum bridge, this time on foot: 
And since Mom missed the street car the first time, we hopped on board for the short ride back to the PSU district: 
Taking the back roads of southwest Portland, Mom drove me back to the tire store, completing our journey.

I thought this was super fun! I'd love to do it again and see what else Portland has to offer :)