Why I deleted my Facebook Account

Batman made me.  (I can hear the nagging still.)

But really, he has some valid points.  Most of them are addressed in this article, and then further explained in this one.

I came to the conclusion that it would be “safe” to use Facebook if  I didn’t use my whole real name, real birthday, exact location, made sure not to post where I was going or about vacations until they were already over…  At that point, why bother?

I have this blog for things I want to be public, and I have a password-protected, invite-only site elsewhere for friends and family.  (But you can ask to be invited!  Please don’t be shy, my dear “real life” friends and family!   “Crunchy friends” welcome too, wink wink.)  Yes, I realize the private site could still get hacked, but it is not as likely.

It’s been a few days and I don’t actually miss my Facebook account.  I had let it grow out of control.  I had over 300 friends.  It was too easy to miss important things.  Statuses, messages, etc were just a big jumble.  Good riddance!  And you will all see me on my blog more often.  You have been warned!

If you want to jump ship with me, here’s how to delete your Facebook account.   Just be aware that sometimes it doesn’t actually work.  You will have to check a few weeks after you delete it by trying to sign in.  If  it asks you if you would like to reactivate your account, they never deleted your info and you may have to send them an email and beg them to delete your account and all the info contained within.  That is why I changed my name and deleted all my picture, applications, groups, pages, links, etc, before I deleted mine.  This way if they don’t delete my account correctly, at least I got rid of the info.  (I hope.)

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Stars Hollow Moments

In my years since graduating high school, I have had the opportunity to live in a variety of different small towns.  Having grown up in Chicago suburbia, I don’t know if some of the small-town experiences I’ve had are par for the course for small-town living or if they just seem funny to me due to my background

When Batman and I were living in small-town Montana and I was pregnant with our first child, he ended up getting his CDL and went to work as a truck driver.   Near the end of my pregnancy, there was a wildfire encroaching on our small town — at least for those people who lived farther back in the woods, up near the border of the Bob Marshall Wilderness.  The forest service was great at organizing town meetings — yes, town meetings — about once a week.  While they held the meetings under the guise of letting everyone know how the firefighting efforts were going, I think the real reason for the meetings was to allow locals to come and ask questions instead of having to answer the same questions over and over on the phone.

Now, we lived on a poorly-maintained dirt road.  The garbage man even refused to come down our street, and told me — during my seventh month of pregnancy — that we would have to bring our trash to the side of the highway for him.  Uh, no thanks.  If we were going to have to load it all up, why not take it to the dump for free instead of paying Mr. “I don’t want to drive on your cruddy road”  to do it?  Anyway, all this to say that Batman had to find other places to park his semi-trailer when he was home.  Usually he left it in the parking lot near the seldom-used community center.     It was during one of the fire information meetings that Batman had to go back to work.  He showed up with his truck, and his trailer was boxed in by meeting attendees.

Can you picture it?  Batman enters the log-cabin community center.

“Excuse me.”

Silence falls.  Chatter about possible evacuation or whether the fire fighters think the blaze will cross the highway comes to a grinding halt.  All heads turn towards him.

“Um, I need to get my trailer and go back to work.  There are some vehicles blocking my trailer.”

When I told my mom about this, she said, “Was it like the Stars Hollow town meetings on Gilmore Girls?”

Pretty much.

These days, I find myself in a small mountain community in Southern California.  We do not have forest rangers going door to door posting warnings about wildfires and informational meetings.  When my town was evacuated due to wildfire, there was no personal notification.  Perhaps I’ll tell our evacuation story another day.  However, in true Stars Hollow fashion, we have a troubadour.

Her name is Penny.  She has a coppery head of curls, an infectious smile, and a prosthetic leg.  She hangs out in the walkway outside the post office, giving out cheerful greetings and serenading everyone in town.  You see, everyone here has to get their mail via PO Box, so the post office is a central crossing point for all locals, whether they live in the mobile homes or lake-front mansions.

I don’t know what Penny’s story is or if she is aware that she seems like a character straight out of a television show or movie.  However I can’t help but appreciate her joyous songs and impromptu prayers.  The other day, as she saw me toting my two little munchkins in to get the mail, she exclaimed over their cuteness and energy.  To my surprise, she started praying for God to give me strength!  Everywhere I go with my kids, people ooooh and ahhhhh over them.  “Such big blue eyes!”   “Such blond hair!”  “Wow look at all her energy!  What a handful!”  Yet it’s not until we meet a possibly homeless, possibly playing with a less-than-full-deck woman that someone offers support to me as their mother, acknowledging that no matter how kids are, it is tough being a mom.

What’s more impressive to me, though, is that it seems like everyone likes Penny.  She almost always has someone different sitting and visiting with her on the bench.  In big cities, homeless people are invisible.  I am sure that my town has invisible homeless people too.  But I’ve never seen anyone glance at Penny with scorn or refuse to acknowledge her greetings.  I don’t think I am the only one who appreciates her strong, sure, country-singer-esque voice either.  The Penny phenomena makes me proud to live in this small town.

Concert magic with Lisa Loeb

I had the fabulous opportunity to take my kids to a Lisa Loeb concert the other night night.  I hesitated to take them, mostly because any activities we normally do are done by dinner time.  But since it was free, I figured I would give it a try–and boy am I glad we went! During the opening act, we hung out in the back of the grassy area.

Blue Dragon made some friends.  Before long, Lion Cub couldn’t resist joining in the crazy fun.

I loved that fence kept the kids safely corralled, and I have to say, I loved the non-rash-inducing astroturf.  (Yes, this Wrangler Mama is allergic to grass… which means she is also allergic to hay.  Go figure.) After Lisa Loeb finally started playing, my friend came to find me.  She said her family was sitting up by the front and the kids were all running around and dancing in front of the stage.  It sounded too good to be true, but it wasn’t.  I was hoping this would be the chance for me to get a decent picture of Lisa, and I was not disappointed!

The dancing and fun wore on into the night.  Blue Dragon made 5 more new best friends, the way only little kids can do in a matter of minutes.

Blue Dragon found a new hero.  I’m planning to get her the  Camp Lisa CD for her birthday.

And we all enjoyed a satisfying mix of kid songs as well as some new and old songs from Lisa Loeb.

All in all, a magical night.

PS I tried to upload my video of Lisa singing her hit “Stay (I missed you),” but WordPress is not liking my video file.

Let me tell you about my French Press.

A few months ago, after becoming frustrated with broken drip-style coffee makers, I purchased a French press.

I love it, and here is why I love it.

1) It will work when the power is out.

2) It brews good, strong coffee with no burnt taste.

3) It takes up very little precious counter space.

4) I could take it camping.

5) Did I mention it will work when the power is out?

Because the power WILL be out again next winter.

And I want to be prepared.  Being new to our house last winter and not having much time to prepare for outages left us… cold.  It wasn’t so pretty.

Well, it was pretty.

But I wasn’t so pretty without my coffee.

Our vintage stove works beautifully without electricity, so it is no problem to heat up water for the coffee.  Now all I need is to scour the local antique shops to find a hand-powered coffee grinder, and I won’t even have to grind my beans ahead of time.  I will be able to enjoy this:

After helping my kids enjoy this:

All right!  Okay!  I admit it — even though I am eagerly anticipating the ripening my first crop of home-grown tomatoes, part of me is already looking forward to winter.

Another admission: my coffee obsession may be genetic.

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