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Well, Hi. How Have You Been?

Looky here. I've just had the most overwhelming couple of months lately, haven't I? So when I sit down and try to re-acquaint myself with this here writing project I started years ago one would suppose it's easy and comes naturally. But it's not, so bear with me as I dust the cobwebs out of the corner and take some cleaning products out to disinfect that stench. I think it may be an old cup of coffee that has fuzz growing on it.

Bullet points may be easy to read for some people, but since I'm out of practice of writing I think we'll just go with some broad topics and a few linky links. How does that sound? Because some of you are following me on other social networking sites, you have SOME clue as to the mundane parts of my life and others of you are just going for broke and simply calling me. Oh, Oprah? Seriously, hon. You can just leave a message and I'll get back to you.

Interviewing And Being Interviewed

A mere week before the presidential election I got the greatest opportunity to speak with vice-president elect's wife Dr. Jill Biden on the phone. I KNOW, RIGHT? That was surreal for me to tell her my name and ask my education-related question and we actually interacted a bit. Here's how that went down: I got a nudge from a friend who asked that I participate in a conference call and the next minute I was searching for the Obama-Biden Education plan which can be found here. While I worked on my interview questions I wondered which one would make the best impression (because I was a tad nervous about this) and I came up with three good questions that I hoped she would be able to answer. After calling in with my code and waiting for the other people to ask questions I realized THEY WERE TAKING ALL OF MY GOOD QUESTIONS. Which meant trying to use my scrambled brain to ask something that was relevant to me.

I finally went with: "As a high school assistant principal one of the things we struggle with is that schools are responsible for attendance. No matter what we do to try to get them to come to school and stay in school it is a struggle. Is there another way we can get there? I feel like No Child Left Behind says "here's the target" but gives us no support on how to get there."

After a little banter (and here I must stop to say thus: I HAD BANTER WITH THE WIFE OF THE VICE-PRESIDENT ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES) she explained that she did her doctoral thesis on student retention and spent 13 years at the high school level (at which point I did a fist pump and mouthed a silent YES because I asked a relevant question). She mentioned the Success in the Middle Act which is designed more local non-profit organizations with aiding schools in getting students into the building. She also advocated a focus on parents to get them more actively involved. For instance, creating online report cards, contracts with parents and students, and doing all that we are able to with the parental responsibility. Some states do this better than others and, ultimately, this is a funding issue.

I think my favorite part of the interview was when Dr. Biden was mentioning that we needed to "fund" and "fix" NCLB and had a slip up that we should fuck nclb. I hope that if she reads this very post she gets as much of a giggle out of that as I did and still do. It's laugh or cry, folks. Laugh or cry. Think of the search engine results I could get out of that!

You can find a more comprehensive interview with all the questions here thanks to the MOMocrats.

Writing Elsewhere

I have this Beauty Hacks post up at BlogHer.

Amalah asked that I help out with Advice Smackdown at AlphaMom while she squeezed a baby from her vaginal regions. When you ask me that sweetly, I always shout YES.

A writer from the St. Louis Beacon interviewed me for this piece on mom bloggers and I talked about what I will and won't write about online.

So, BlogHer will be in Chicago again next year. I know I'm late even mentioning this news, but I'm THRILLED to say that Miss Britt has promised to either hump my leg or follow me back to my hotel room until she gets a peek at what's going on in there. Either way, WIN-WIN.

Why I Can't Write About Everything Yet

That might be self-explanatory considering how much my thoughts and feelings are all over the place. But just know that I think I've spotted the very deus ex machina I've been waiting for and if that's not irritating the crap out of you, I don't know what will. You want to slap me for that. I know this. Let's just look on the bright side and see that, for the time being, me and my capital letters are here for a while.
« Probably Not Appropriate, But Have A Nice Day! | Main | I Won't Say One Word About The Election »

Reader Comments (20)

Great stuff momma! Sounds like taking a break here has opened up many doors for you. I hope to see you in July - now to work on getting sponsorship.

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRenée J. Ross

Miss you pretty lady. Keep well darling.

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRedneck Mommy

Well I'm glad to see you're back. :)

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

Quite interesting, your participation involving Dr. Biden. I do believe that the absence of parental involvement encourages student absence, along with other problems.

I look back at my town's school system of 60 years ago, and I see a marked difference when I look at it today. And the level of parental participation is the reason, imo.

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered Commentere.Craig

No linky for the Obama-Biden Education plan...oops!

I think it's totally kick ass that you were able to participate in that call. I hope you were rockin' the shoes...that always gives me a confidence booster. :)

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

... and I just caught the Beacon read.
Hugs for you Kelly.

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

Well, Mocha, you've been very busy!!LOL You know I follow you on other places, too, so I know some of this.. I hope you're keeping your balance as you get knocked around.. it's hard, but worth it to do all you're doing! You're an inspiration to a lot of people.. And that's just sooooo cool that you got to banter with Dr Biden!! LOL Keep on dancin', kiddo.

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJeankfl

Oops! I fixed that link, Elizabeth. Thanks for the catch!

...and for the hug

November 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

How awesome that you got to talk with Jill Biden. I read a profile of her, and she is my hero. It's so reassuring to know that someone with her perspective on education issues will have the ear of those in power.

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

It's nice to have you back, even cryptically.

And yeah! fuck NCLB! I agree with Dr. Biden!

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterGwen

I may also be coming to Chicago. I won't do any humping, though. I may just stand in a corner and touch myself.

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAvitable

Where did my comment go? Is this thing on? *tap tap*

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAvitable

I'm wondering if I should tell you that I had to google what "deus ex machina" meant...


November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Britt

Welcome back.

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered Commenteranonymous

Glad you're back! You've been missed. :)

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmi

Oh, how I've missed you, sly foxy momma! And I thought you were just "not writing," not realizing you were "just not writing HERE." (You have been bizzy, no?) You really do rock, in so many atmospheres!

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSally T.

I'm totally hoping that we can sit down and talk ed in Chicago. It will probably devolve into drunken, "You love Beverly Tatum? ME TOO OMG LETS START OUR OWN AWESOME SCHOOL," but who cares?

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKBO

Oh, have you've been missed!

November 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMiranda

I've really, really missed you. Can't wait to see you in Chicago, again, and this time I will NOT be taking a greyhound, no siree....

Also, I think it's freakin' awesome that you got to speak with Dr. Biden -- and the whole fuck nclb thing makes me giggle, too. Way cool.

November 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDana

Wow, you've had a busy few months! Glad to see you back around these parts, though. Awesome experience with Mrs. Biden, too!

November 27, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAssertagirl

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