naturedance: my foot, in my boot, on Mount Rainier (Default)
Within the past year or two, I've found myself in the role of fairy godmother and extra bonus grownup to four girls aged from elementary to middle school. This change represents a major addition and expansion to my life, and while it's introduced more complexity, I'm thankful every day that I have this opportunity.

I've learned a lot during this time, and I'm wanting to write down what websites, books and products have really helped. So I'm going to make posts here with a new tag: extra bonus grownup.

(And yeah, I'm still working full-time, and my career is still high-priority, but because of job changes I've been unable to attend my usual professional conferences, which saddens me.)
naturedance: this is me on a suspension bridge (me backpacking)
I've let my old LJ account lapse out of paid status. This means that the embedded style whereby my most recent few entries from that journal appear in the center of the main page of my shakal.org website no longer functions.

This is part of my Clever Plan to get my personal web presence updated and shoved over to a new site which will be running WordPress with [livejournal.com profile] hugwill's OpenID plugin, and transition shakal.org into more of a family-tree and historical interest sort of website for my extended family, rather than an exclusively personal one. I've been working on this project/effort for a while.

It would have been more convenient for me if my LJ paid status lasted another couple days/weeks/months, to let me have more time to finish a couple things on my new personal site, but hey, if things look broken? Why is anyone noticing? Go skip class or work and play in the big blue room for a while! Shoo! Go be outside!

Me, I'm in the office, being my usual workaholic self, but I'm looking forward to going home a little early. Yay for the big blue room!
naturedance: my foot, in my boot, on Mount Rainier (self-portrait)

(I used to have this on an About Adele page on my old website, and when I moved to adeleshakal.com in 2008, creating a shortened About page was a more appropriate and modern thing to do. I decided a blog post wass a more appropriate place for this, anyway. Sometimes, it helps to write out my beliefs, my priorities, my activism, my soapbox… and other times, I just need to get out in the fresh air and hike alone with the rocks and trees and open wind. And other times, I just need to go for coffee with a friend. Today was one of the soapbox days, I guess. The original version of this content was in part inspired by NPR’s This I Believe.)


I live passionately, and I focus intently on activities at home and at work. I am a perfectionist endlessly fascinated by life, the universe and everything. This also means that I am endlessly striving for one of those “work-life balance” things I’ve heard so much about.



I believe in imagination. I believe in hope. I believe that the journey to explore ourselves and our world is infinitely engaging.



I believe humanity needs to explore beyond our planet to have a better perspective on ourselves and our universe.


I believe that no single religion has all the answers, nor even all of the questions.


I believe that the United States and our world deserves better than the mess made by megacorporations and politicians.


And I believe that each individual person can make a difference.


I yearn for open spaces and fresh air. I find gardening to be cheaper and more useful than therapy or organized religion. I find peace and solace in wilderness.


However, I also love living in my current urban apartment, which is walking distance from used book stores, a used music store, a lovely little farmers market on weekends, more than a few fabulous restaurants, the public library, and the convenient mass transit rail station.


I enjoy organizing information, writing, reading, crochet, knitting, dancing, sewing, science fiction and fantasy, making jewelry, gardening, going to open-air markets, marking the passage of the seasons, road trips, learning about ancient cultures, camping (day-hiking, car-camping and backpacking in wonderful wild places), and enjoying good food and long talks with good friends.



I retake the Myers-Briggs/Keirsey indicator test every few years, and the results always seem slightly inconsistent; although I’m always coming up a rational NT, the other letters sometimes fluctuate slightly. In 1999, I came up as a Fieldmarshal (eNTj). I also took the Kingdomality test a while back, and apparently, my medieval occupational inclination is to be a Shepherd.


I’m an idealist, a feminist, an environmentalist, an independent thinker, and I care very much about equal rights for everybody regardless of gender or skin color or sexual orientation. I believe very strongly in womens’ rights to control what happens to our own bodies. I believe that the right to self-defense is a fundamental human right. I’m intolerant of intolerance and willful ignorance.


I’m a member of the American Civil Liberties Union, Planned Parenthood, the Nature Conservancy, the Sequoia Natural History Association, Descanso Gardens, the System Administrator’s Guild, the League of Professional System Administrators, and the Project Management Institute.



Whenever my financial situation allows, I donate to the following charities:



If anyone cares about astrology, I’m a taurus, and my eastern zodiac sign is the water ox. This may have something to do with certain people’s observations that in certain situations, I’m a bit… stubborn.


To be honest, family and friends have actually used the terms “bullheaded”, “tenacious”, and, er… “damn hard to sway about anything” to describe me, though I’m sure they meant that in the best possible way! I take it as a compliment, and my peers and leadership at work certainly value my “sticktoitiveness.”

February 2017

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