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Michael A. Carone – In Memorium

In Family, Italian, life, Malavenda, Men, Pablo Malavenda, Uncategorized on March 18, 2017 at 4:25 am

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August 17, 1955 – March 13, 2017


Good morning. My name is Pablo Malavenda, and I am one of Michael’s nephews. On behalf of my wife Kristin, my kids, Max & Zoe, and myself — I wish to offer my sincerest condolences to the family — especially Ann Terese, Marissa, Michael, my Mom, Lucille, and my Uncle Jimmy. I so wanted to be with you today — but am not able — so, I thought I’d share with you a few stories of one of my favorite people ever — my uncle Michael.

My memories of Michael go back to the 1960’s & 1970’s — growing up in a big Italian family with lots of aunts, uncles and cousins — who gathered every Sunday at our grandparent’s home for a big pasta dinner. Michael was only one year older than my brother Peter — so, although he was our uncle — he grew up with us and was very much a part of our generation of cousins. We loved and respected ALL of our uncles and aunts — but Michael was ours — in a special way.

Each Sunday, my grandfather, John Carone, got up at the crack of dawn, started the tomato sauce and meatballs — and then walked to church. On his way home from church he stopped at Shorty’s and bought candy bars for all of the grand-kids. BUT — he didn’t give them to us — he gave them to Michael to distribute to us at his will. Michael took us to his room — and had us earn the candy by picking up his room, doing push-ups, making his bed — and if a quarter didn’t bounce on his bed, he made us make it again — until it did. Eventually he would give in and give us our candy bars. The truth is though — we loved it!

Michael and my brother Peter were the leaders of this gang of cousins — or should I say “boy-cousins.” (My sister, Marybeth, was the only girl cousin and although she was tough enough to keep up with us, she often chose to hang out with all of the aunts and get pampered.) A motley crew we were — it was Peter, John, Jon, Scott, Tommy, Todd…and me. This was Michael’s turf — so, he would lead us in games — mostly baseball, football & basketball — and on adventures in the neighborhood. After dinner, when the Mr. Softee truck came through the neighborhood — my grandfather bought twin-popsicles and each of the cousins got a half — but not Michael. He got what he wanted. And again — we loved it!

During the summer months Michael spent many of his weeks with our family in Meriden — and we loved having him. Once my brother Peter spent a week with him in Hartford — but that ended badly with Peter getting his foot caught in the spokes of a bicycle and needing to go to the hospital — and Michael felt awful.

That whole era ended when my grandparents decided to move back to Franklin Avenue — but before the move was complete, my grandfather died suddenly. This is when my grandmother, Phyllis, asked my mother, Lucille, to take over the Sunday meals — and she did. Not much changed except the location — all the cousins were there and Michael still led us through our Sunday activities. We were now all entering middle school and high school — so our relationships began to evolve — and as the cousins got more athletic, the games got more intense.

As the least athletic of the bunch — I was sure I would be cast aside — but Michael wouldn’t let that happen. He tried to teach me how to catch a baseball — to no avail — but eventually I became the permanent pitcher or permanent catcher — and always the score keeper. He made me feel special, he saw me, he included me. One of the highlights of my early life was when Michael agreed to be my Confirmation sponsor. He attended Confirmation Mass in an awesome pink suit. He looked so good the pastor approached him and told him he loved his suit. I selected St. Michael the Archangel as my saint — and Michael gave me a gold medal of my saint — which I have not taken off since and wear to this day. Much like St. Michael, my Uncle Michael was a warrior — he protected me, he defended me and he made me a better person.

When I was accepted to attend UConn — I had no way to get to campus. I eventually moved into my grandmother’s apartment on the corner of Franklin Avenue and Bond Street and took the bus each day to the UConn Hartford Campus. Michael was living there at the time too. When Michael and Ann got engaged — he moved into an apartment in Wethersfield and asked me to be his roommate until they were married. He didn’t need me — but he knew I would be more comfortable in his apartment with my own bedroom and not on a cot in the living room of my grandmother’s. I cherish that time I spent living the life of a genuine Italian on the “avenue.” I went with my uncles and cousins to the South End Italian Club, I was the scorekeeper for the South End Yankees and helped plan Michael and Ann’s wedding with the help of Rosemary, Ann’s sister. What an incredible experience for a kid from Meriden — and Michael was at the center of it all.

Soon after those glorious days, Michael and Marissa were born, and a new generation of cousins was emerging — Anthony arrived and Jamie was getting older. Our generation of cousins was also getting married and having kids and drifting apart. When my grandmother passed — Sunday dinners continued but the focus had shifted to the younger cousins. To me, Michael was still the bright light of the family. Before our eyes Michael became a man, a husband — and what a joy it was to see him become a father. Michael had so much love for each and every one of us — but the love he had for Michael and Marissa was boundless. Even though he now had a family of his own — Michael always reminded me that he loved me, he would protect me and most importantly he was proud of me.


I was so happy that Michael met my wife, Kristin, attended our wedding, met my two kids, and attended both of my two kids’ Christenings and their first birthday parties. Soon after that Michael had his accident — but my family and I had wonderful visits with him twice a year — each time we traveled to Connecticut from Indiana — for the past 15 years. Our most recent visit was in December — and we got a lot of hugs in.

I know for certain that Michael was carried to Heaven in the palm of God’s hands. He was greeted by St. Peter — who said “Welcome — come right in! I’ve been watching you since you showed up to that Confirmation Mass in a pink suit.” He immediately hooked up with his partner in crime, my brother Peter and they stormed in and loudly interrupted a serious game of setback with my grandmother, my grandfather, my father, Patty, Sonny, and Ronny. Heaven has a new angel who brings his laughter and his love and his light.


Dear Michael — I love you. I miss you. I thank you. And I’ll see you someday — on the other side.

Bailey Hikes to Fight Hunger

In Malavenda, Pablo Malavenda, Uncategorized on September 9, 2016 at 9:16 pm

To give online to Bailey’s Hunger Hike effort, click HERE.


12045609_984029394971942_151902064509167010_oHi, I’m Bailey. I’m a six-year old double dapple dachshund and a part of the Malavenda family. I know I’m just a little dog — but when I learned that millions of children go hungry, I decided to do something about it. I’m going to participate in Hunger Hike again this year and I hope you will support me. BTW — I will be “hiking” with Max, Zoe, Kristin & Pablo — so, a donation to me is also support for them as well.

Please SHARE my page with any of your friends, puppies, cats, and family who may be inspired to donate as well.

PLEASE dig deep and donate through me online. Donating is simple, fast, secure and tax-deductible. Any amount you can give will help!

12045305_984027898305425_5403212883575075102_oI’m excited to be a part of this annual effort again this year which raises funds for three fabulous not-for profits: Lafayette Urban Ministry, Food Finders Food Bank, and St. Thomas Aquinas Haiti Mission. Thank you for visiting my fundraising page. I really appreciate it. Together we will be helping hungry children and families.You can learn more by going to the Hunger Hike website (www.hungerhike.org).

Thank you again for your support!


To give online to Bailey’s Hunger Hike effort, click HERE.

Father’s Day – Hey Groupon, I Ain’t That Guy!

In father's day, fatherhood, Malavenda, Men, Pablo Malavenda, parenting on June 19, 2016 at 6:20 am

fathersdayAs Father’s Day approaches — I once again have to accept the fact that I am not a “typical” dad. And my kids are used to explaining that our family is a bit “weird.”

Thanks to “Deal of the Day” websites and e-newsletters like Groupon & Living Social — we are further reminded of the stuff and activities that dads are supposed to like.

Groupon not only has Father’s Day deals that include cigars, meat (steaks), sports equipment, watches, recliners, grills, grilling tools, chain saws, lawn mowers, car detailing, beard grooming stuff, all kinds of things to help me carry my beer and keep it cold, and yes, ties — but they also have a post entitled, The Guide to Father’s Day Gifts. Groupon wants my kids to take me boxing, race go-carts, start a wood working project, jump out of a plane (tandem sky dive), taste a bunch of beers…and go to the shooting range (yes, guns), golf course, batting cage, rock climbing wall, go-cart track, etc. Not to mention that Home Depot, Lowe’s and Menard’s keep sending me emails promoting their gift cards as great Father’s Day gifts. Really?

Now, truth be told — I do enjoy some of these things, a few of these activities, and enjoy an occasional trip to the “hardware” store — BUT is this what they really think about fathers. Is this it? To be fair, Groupon has a deal for facials but they listed it under “wildcard” father’s day gifts.

These “Deals of the Day” sites have taken it to a new level.

My frustration stems from the fact that I was raised as a progressive, Mediterranean-American male – who does NOT fit any of the stereotypes of the typical man as defined by Groupon, the greeting card industry or by any marketing that is gender-based.


Greeting cards are the worst though. In general greeting cards reinforce all of the worst negative stereotypes about men, women, and several other historically oppressed peoples. Standing in the card store in front of the rack filled with greeting cards, I momentarily feel inadequate, left out, odd, and less than a man. I don’t golf, fish, drink beer, or demand dinner when I get home from a long day in the office. I DO cook and bake well; I work around the house; I respect my life partner (and still love her a lot); I love being a dad; I do laundry, iron, and put away clothes; I fill and empty the sink and dishwasher; I dress myself; and I put the toilet seat back down. Eventually I realize that I am very, very OK with NOT being the “guy.”


1963ish1 (2)My male role models in my family were studs – but they were respectful of their partners; they were romantic; could cook and did often; and dressed very well. They hugged and kissed their kids every day, said I love you to their wives, and went shopping, did laundry, and made dinner. Of course roles in relationships were different in the 1950’s, 1960’s, and 1970’s – but I am a combination of their great traits and the expectations of modern times. Why then do the greeting card writers and marketing gurus still perpetuate these archaic, primitive, unenlightened behaviors featuring beer loving, Neanderthals, sloths, chauvinists who can’t cook and prefer hunting and fishing and golfing more than being with their family?

So what’s up? I doubt if the only Father who doesn’t fit their mold is me. I am sure there are other Fathers, perhaps the majority of Fathers, who can’t relate to the males depicted in these greeting cards. In such a competitive, commercial, and capitalistic industry – if it didn’t sell, they wouldn’t keep making them. So, who are these guys? – And who’s buying these cards or this stuff on Groupon? Are we just so lazy that we can do nothing more than surrender to the negative stereotypes of Dads? – No matter how offensive it is to both men and women.

Or it is that I – once again – am the only one who cares? (Probably not.)

So, now I must go and bake for the church brunch, hug my wife, do the laundry, drive my son to band practice, call my mom, text my wife that “she’s beautiful and I miss her,” sew my daughter’s shirt, tutor my kids in math, go grocery shopping, and get dinner ready for the family.

This is what this Father is doing – so, call us weird — but there are NO complaints here — because I’ve got the BEST job in the entire world!


Read more stories about growing up in my family and our traditions, check out these PC Pop posts:


Flat Stanley travels to Indiana — Again

In Books, Children, Children's Literature, Comic Books, Education, Family, History, Lafayette Indiana, Literacy Month, Malavenda, NEA, NPR, Pablo Malavenda, Purdue, Reading Across America, Story Book Leadership, WBAA on May 29, 2016 at 9:12 pm

Dear Mrs. Burt’s Second Grade Class,


Thank you for sending Flat Stanley to visit me in Indiana. Flat Stanley and I have had a great time going to many of my favorite places in my hometown of West Lafayette as well as Lafayette, Franklin & Indianapolis, Indiana.


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First, I introduced Flat Stanley to my parents — as well as my brother, Maximilian, and our dog, Bailey (see the picture below). Max is a junior in high school; and Bailey is a “double dapple” miniature dachshund.


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Flat Stanley loved Bailey — but who can blame him? I then gave Flat Stanley a tour of our neighborhood, which is called Hadley Moors. It’s named after Hadley Lake which is near our house.


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Next, I brought Flat Stanley to see one of the many corn and soybean fields in Indiana. Indiana corn and soybeans are used all over the world for lots of foods like popcorn, tofu, corn syrup, soy milk, and even ethanol gas for your cars.


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Look at Flat Stanley next to the corn stalks. He’s almost as tall as them because they just started growing. By August those stalks will be over 15 feet tall.


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I then took Flat Stanley to school with me. I am a sophomore at William Henry Harrison High School in West Lafayette. Besides my classes, my favorite activities at school are the Sunshine Society, photography and band — I play the flute.

Below is a picture of Flat Stanley looking at some of the pictures I took this year. The picture I took of the purple flower and the bumblebee won first prize. It’s a coneflower (also named Echinacea) from our flower garden at our house.


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My high school is named after President William Henry Harrison. President Harrison was from Indiana; and as the Governor of the Indiana territory, he led the Battle of Tippecanoe. The Battle of Tippecanoe is one of the most important battles in the history of our country – and it took place in 1811 (over 200 years ago) in the next town over from me – Battle Ground, Indiana. Our county is now named Tippecanoe; and the Wabash River separates our two cities – West Lafayette and Lafayette.


In addition to corn, Indiana is known as the “Crossroad of America” for many reasons including having lots of trains going through here.


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Flat Stanley & I are pictured on a bridge above the Four Corners Depot along the Wabash River in Downtown Lafayette.


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The Wabash River flows right into the Mississippi River. There are several trails and bridges that go along and over the Wabash River. Flat Stanley and I explored a few different parts of the Wabash River during his stay.


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My dad works at Lafayette Urban Ministry in Lafayette only four blocks from the River.


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Downtown Lafayette is a fun place to visit. Today Flat Stanley and I attended the “’Round the Fountain” Art Fair and the Farmer’s Market.


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The county courthouse for Tippecanoe County is in Lafayette, Indiana on the other side of the Wabash River. Above is a picture of Flat Stanley and me with the Tippecanoe County Courthouse in the background. On top of the courthouse dome is a 14 foot statue representing “Liberty.” In December the dome is filled with lights for the holidays.

Lafayette and West Lafayette were named after Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, who was a famous French General who helped President George Washington in the Revolutionary War.

Here is Flat Stanley with me at the courthouse fountain with a statue of General Lafayette.


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My hometown of West Lafayette is best known as the home of Purdue University.


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Purdue University is the flagship university of the State of Indiana. There are 40,000 students enrolled at Purdue. Purdue is named after John Purdue who gave land and money to the State of Indiana to start this state university. Flat Stanley and I are sitting below with the statue of John Purdue in front of the oldest building on campus, University Hall.


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Some of the famous alumni of Purdue include Orville Redenbacher (the popcorn guy); three NFL Super Bowl winning quarterbacks Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints), Len Dawson & Bob Griese (Miami Dolphins); John Wooden, basketball hall of famer; Ryan Newman, winner of the Daytona 500; Olympic gold medalist in diving, David Boudia; and 23 astronauts including Neil Armstrong. I actually got to meet Drew Brees when he was a student and heard Neil Armstrong speak at the dedication of this building — memories I will never forget.

Flat Stanley and I are pictured below at the Neil Armstrong statue in front of the Neil Armstrong Hall of Engineering.


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My mom works in this building as the Communications & Marketing Coordinator for the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics in the College of Engineering.


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On display in Armstrong Hall are a full-scale replica of the Apollo 1 command module and a lunar sample also known as a “moon rock.” Flat Stanley and I are pictured above with the Apollo 1 space capsule. We are pictured below with the moon rock.


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We then went to the Purdue Airport. At Purdue, students can learn how to be pilots, airport managers, and air traffic controllers. All kinds of planes fly in and out of this airport including some really fast jets. The sports teams also use this airport to travel to games.


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West Lafayette is also the home of the Indiana Veterans’ Home. The Indiana Veterans’ Home is a place that helps all US veterans from the whole state of Indiana.


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I have been to the Veterans’ home many times to serve the veterans and to sing to them with my school choir on Veterans Day each November.


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The day we visited the Indiana Veterans’ Home there were lots of flags on display to celebrate and remember veterans on Memorial Day.

Flat Stanley and I then did a lot of my favorite things in town.

We started by visiting the Celery Bog and Lilly Nature Center.


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They have lots of cool programs like “how to catch fireflies.” My family often walk our dog, Bailey, on the trails here and ride our bikes on the bike trails.


There are lots of great restaurants in our town. While Flat Stanley was visiting, we ate at two of my favorite restaurants. Below, we’re at Igloo Frozen Custard where we shared a burger, fries and chocolate milk shake.


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Below, Flat Stanley and I stopped at the Dog N Suds Drive-in restaurant and had Coney Island chili dogs and Dog N Suds root beer in a frosted mug. My friend, Brett’s dad owns Dog N Suds.


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The next day we went to the Columbian Park in Lafayette. Columbian Park is named after Christopher Columbus. It is a great park.

It has a train that looks silly but is a lot of fun.


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It also has a really awesome water park called Tropicanoe Cove, which has water slides and a lazy river.


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The Columbian Park also has a Zoo. The Columbian Park Zoo is free!


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The Zoo has hedgehogs, miniature horses, spider monkeys, prairie dogs, chinchillas, foxes, singing dogs, goats, porcupines, tamanduas, pot-belled pigs, armadillos, wallabies, polecats, llamas, gibbons — and a lot of birds, reptiles and other animals.

Flat Stanley liked the spider monkeys and gibbons the best. When I was your age — I attended a Zoo camp and had to milk a goat. We visit the park, especially the zoo, a lot in the summer.


This year, the State of Indiana is celebrating its bicentennial. This means that Indiana became a state 200 years ago this year. There are a lot of events planned to celebrate the Indiana Bicentennial — including the BISON-tennial Bison Project (get it?).


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Each of the 92 counties will each have at least one Bison on display. Our county, Tippecanoe County, has three bison. Flat Stanley and I visited the one called “Guardians of the Bond,” which was painted by artist Elizabeth Lincourt (see picture above).


Another day, Flat Stanley and I traveled to Franklin, Indiana — home of Franklin College. The city of Franklin and the college are named for one of our country’s founding fathers, Benjamin Franklin. The City of Franklin is about 96 miles south of West Lafayette.


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Here is a picture of Flat Stanley and me at the Ben Franklin statue on the Franklin College campus.


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I was most excited to bring Flat Stanley to see me dance.

I am a member of the company dance team at Studio b in Lafayette.

I dance ballet, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop.

We compete several times a year. 2016-05-28 Flat Stanley 2007 (2)


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While Flat Stanley was visiting, we competed at the Groove Dance Competition in Indianapolis. Flat Stanley saw me dance in three different company routines and one ensemble with the entire company team. Dancing is a lot of fun — and we even get trophies sometimes.


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The picture above is Flat Stanley with the Studio b company team at Groove Indy.
Below is a selfie we took with my friend, Meredith.


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Lastly, Flat Stanley and I went to Mass at our church, St. Thomas Aquinas.


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Above Flat Stanley and I are outside the church. Below is a picture of Flat Stanley with our pastor, Fr. Patrick.


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Flat Stanley and I had a blast. I hope you enjoy seeing the pictures of all of the places Flat Stanley and I visited in Indiana. Thank you again for sending Flat Stanley to me. See you soon.


Your friend (& first cousin once removed),


Zoe Katherine


Save the UConn Coop

In Books, College Students, Malavenda, Pablo Malavenda, UConn, Uncategorized on January 31, 2016 at 3:23 pm

uconn_logo1Dear Distinguished Members of the UConn Community –

I am writing to strongly recommend that you save the UConn Coop. Please do not be tempted by a quick profit from a commercial bookstore or a sales presentation that makes promises that cannot honestly be kept in such a tumultuous time in the history of book stores and book sales — especially textbook sales. (Remember Borders, Walden Books, Tower Books, Crown Books, Bookland, etc.)
The UConn Coop has served the UConn students, faculty & extended community for so many years — with great success. There is so much value in what they have offered — member owned, member run and focused on service. The UConn Coop for decades has been offering things that a corporate bookstore would not — like supporting local authors, sponsoring book signing, hosting authors, presenting film festivals — and even replacing water damaged books in a residence hall and working with the library to offer unique services benefiting students. Most importantly they are always supporting and fighting for the students and faculty at UConn — not some international board of directors.
I am one of many alumni voices in my family — and we are all united to save the UConn Coop — and quite frankly surprised that this is even something being discussed. Whatever UConn is being offered to potentially replace the UConn Coop is NOT WORTH IT!
Thanks in advance for considering my request. Please save the UConn Coop. (I would like it to be there when my two high school age children attend UConn very soon.)
Sincerely,
Pablo
UConn 1984, 1991

Lifetime member, UConn Alumni Association


1/21/2014 Grabs Co Op Crowds by Patrick Gosselin


What Can You Do?

The Co-op needs your help! If you believe that the UConn Co-op is the best operator for the UConn Bookstore, then please share your support by writing a letter or email to:

Members of the selection committee: (martha.bedard@uconn.edu;alan.calandro@uconn.edu; eliza.conrad@uconn.edu; patricia.fazio@uconn.edu;robert.hasenfratz@uconn.edu; michael.kirk@uconn.edu;kyle.muncy@uconn.edu; sally.reis@uconn.edu)

Martha Bedard, vice provost for University Libraries

  • Alan Calandro, senior advisor and director of special projects, Office of the Executive Vice President for Administration
  • Eliza Conrad, student
  • Patti Fazio, assistant vice president for brand strategy
  • Michael George, alumni
  • Robert Hasenfratz, professor of English and chair of the English department
  • Michael Kirk, deputy chief of staff, President’s Office
  • Kyle Muncy, associate director of athletics for trademark licensing & branding
  • Sally Reis, vice provost for academic affairs, Letitia Neag Morgan Chair in Educational Psychology, & Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor

President Susan Herbst: (president@uconn.edu)

Members of the UConn Board of Trustees: (boardoftrustees@uconn.edu)

Further, our proposal for Making the Future together will be publicly available on our website so that you can see exactly how the Co-op plans to move forward. We will host a public event Monday Feb. 8th from 10 AM – 12 PM to demonstrate public support during our presentation to the university, followed by a forum to listen to your feedback and discuss further ways to support our selection as UConn’s official bookstore. Keep an eye out on @UconnCoop,Facebook page, and #SaveTheCoop for further details.

Finally, share this message via your social networks both on-line and off-line.

Mindset List for the Class of 2019

In College Students, Education, Lists, Malavenda, New Year, Pablo Malavenda on August 18, 2015 at 11:55 am

The Beloit College
Mindset List for the Class of 2019


Students heading into their first year of college this year are mostly 18 and were born in 1997. Among those who have never been alive in their lifetimes are Princess Diana, Notorious B.I.G., Jacques Cousteau, and Mother Teresa. Joining them in the world the year they were born were Dolly the sheep, The McCaughey septuplets, and Michael “Prince” Jackson Jr.


Since they have been on the planet:class_of_2019_tile_coaster

  1. Hybrid automobiles have always been mass produced.
  2. Google has always been there, in its founding words, “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible.”
  3. They have never licked a postage stamp.
  4. Email has become the new “formal” communication, while texts and tweets remain enclaves for the casual.
  5. Four foul-mouthed kids have always been playing in South Park.
  6. Hong Kong has always been under Chinese rule.
  7. They have grown up treating Wi-Fi as an entitlement.
  8. The NCAA has always had a precise means to determine a national champion in college football.
  9. The announcement of someone being the “first woman” to hold a position has only impressed their parents.
  10. Charlton Heston is recognized for waving a rifle over his head as much as for waving his staff over the Red Sea.
  11. Color photos have always adorned the front page of The New York Times.
  12. Ellis Island has always been primarily in New Jersey.
  13. “No means no” has always been morphing, slowly, into “only yes means yes.”
  14. Cell phones have become so ubiquitous in class that teachers don’t know which students are using them to take notes and which ones are planning a party.
  15. The Airport in Washington, D.C., has always been Reagan National Airport.
  16. Their parents have gone from encouraging them to use the Internet to begging them to get off of it.
  17. If you say “around the turn of the century,” they may well ask you, “which one?”
  18. They have avidly joined Harry Potter, Ron, and Hermione as they built their reading skills through all seven volumes.
  19. Attempts at human cloning have never been federally funded but do require FDA approval.
  20. “Crosstown Classic” and the “Battle of the Bay” have always been among the most popular interleague rivalries in Major League Baseball.
  21. Carry Me Back to Old Virginny has never been the official song of the Virginia Commonwealth.
  22. Phish Food has always been available from Ben and Jerry.
  23. Kyoto has always symbolized inactivity about global climate change.
  24. When they were born, cell phone usage was so expensive that families only used their “bag phones,” usually in cars, for emergencies.
  25. The therapeutic use of marijuana has always been legal in a growing number of American states.
  26. The eyes of Texas have never looked upon The Houston Oilers.
  27. Teachers have always had to insist that term papers employ sources in addition to those found online.
  28. In a world of DNA testing, the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington has never included a Vietnam War veteran “known only to God.”
  29. Playhouse Disney was a place where they could play growing up.
  30. Surgeons have always used “super glue” in the operating room.
  31. Fifteen nations have always been constructing the International Space Station.
  32. The Lion King has always been on Broadway.
  33. Phoenix Lights is a series of UFO sightings, not a filtered cigarette.
  34. Scotland and Wales have always had their own parliaments and assemblies.
  35. At least Mom and Dad had their new Nintendo 64 to help them get through long nights sitting up with the baby.
  36. First Responders have always been heroes.
  37. Sir Paul and Sir Elton have always been knights of the same musical roundtable.
  38. CNN has always been available en Español.
  39. Heaven’s Gate has always been more a trip to Comet Hale-Bopp and less a film flop.
  40. Splenda has always been a sweet option in the U.S.
  41. The Atlanta Braves have always played at Turner Field.
  42. Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic have always been members of NATO.
  43. Humans have always had implanted radio frequency ID chips—slightly larger than a grain of rice.
  44. TV has always been in such high definition that they could see the pores of actors and the grimaces of quarterbacks.
  45. Jones and Mr. Smith have always been Men in Black, not their next-door neighbors.
  46. Their proud parents recorded their first steps on camcorders, mounted on their shoulders like bazookas.
  47. They had no idea how fortunate they were to enjoy the final four years of Federal budget surpluses.
  48. Amoco gas stations have steadily vanished from the American highway.
  49. Vote-by-mail has always been the official way to vote in Oregon.
  50. …and there has always been a Beloit College Mindset List.

PLUS: A Little Millennial Jargon 

In fairness to the class of 2019 the following are a few of the expressions from their culture that will baffle their parents, older friends, and teachers. They might even baffle YOU.  (You can find translations further down.)

  1. They need to plan ahead so they don’t find themselves “dankrupt.”
  2.  A heavy dose of “Natty Light” has always caught up with them in the morning.As long as they can find a ballpoint pen they can use their “redneck teleprompter.” 
  3. As long as they can find a ballpoint pen they can use their “redneck teleprompter.” 
  4. “Smartphone shuffles” have always slowed down traffic between classes. 
  5. “Vatican Roulette” has always been risky but acceptable. 
  6. A significant other who is a bit “too Yoko Ono” has always created tension.  
  7. “Quiche” has everything to do with hot and nothing to do with food.
  8. “Trolling” innocents on social media has always been uncharitable. 
  9. They’ll know better than to text their professors “TL DR” about assignments
  10. Slurring “textroverts” have always been a fact of social life.” 

 And Last, Your Personal Explainer

Baffled by the Millennial jargon you’ve just read? Feeling old? Here’s a glossary that will end your bewilderment and make you feel hip!

1. They need to plan ahead so they don’t find themselves “dankrupt.”

  • One of a variety of painful declarations that we are out of weed

 2. A heavy dose of “Natty Light” has always caught up with them in the morning.

  • It may taste great and be less filling, but there are limits.

3. As long as they can find a ballpoint pen they can use their “redneck teleprompter.” 

  • The bigger the back of your hand, the more notes you can include, but don’t get caught looking.

4. “Smartphone shuffles” have always slowed down traffic between classes. 

  • One can avoid all eye contact as one moves through the madding texting crowd.

5. “Vatican Roulette” has always been risky but acceptable. 

  • If you’ve got rhythm and like your planning natural, then Vatican Roulette is the game for you.

6. A significant other who is a bit “too Yoko Ono” has always created tension.  

  • A partner too hard to handle…hard for your friends to compete with perfection

7. “Quiche” has everything to do with hot and nothing to do with food.

  • Turn down the heat. Some people are just so hot they enhance the appetite.

8. “Trolling” innocents on social media has always been uncharitable. 

  • Cynical and bullying attacks on happy campers, preserved on the internet, may come back to haunt you

9. They’ll know better than to text their professors “TL DR” about assignments

  • …and just hope their professor doesn’t scribble back to them, about their own papers: “TOO LONG: DIDN”T READ.”

10. Slurring “textroverts” have always been a fact of social life.

  • If you’re too drunk to say it face to face, you probably should wait until morning before you start texting. 

The Beloit College Mindset List, which this year is as old as the entering students themselves, is created by Ron Nief, Emeritus Director of Public Affairs; Tom McBride, Emeritus Professor of English; and Charles Westerberg. Additional items on the list as well as commentaries and guides are found at www.beloit.edu/mindset and www.themindsetlist.com. Regular updates and discussions are on Facebook and Twitter (@MindsetList).

***

Copyright© 2015 Beloit College

Mindset List is a registered trademark

Tax-Free Holiday is Needed in Indiana

In Children, Education, Malavenda, Pablo Malavenda, parenting on August 9, 2015 at 10:54 am

Please Sign Petition for a Tax-Free Holiday in Indiana!


Click HERE.



NYLiBFmPIpBympy-800x450-noPadThis weekend – dozens of US states are not charging state income tax on “back to school” needs — but NOT Indiana. Such a simple gesture by lawmakers — is making a significant impact on the budgets of thousands of families — who NEED it. Tax-Free Holidays is one small way to give parents, grandparents, families a little bit of a financial break — at a very stressful time of year for hardworking families who struggle financially.


Education is Important


Since working at Lafayette Urban Ministry — I have learned that most families want the best for their kids, work very hard, and are still struggling. And families who struggle financial — absolutely hate certain times of year. Back-to-School is one of them. Parents want to give their kids the resources it takes to have a better life than they. The key to breaking the cycle of poverty is EDUCATION.


Education is Expensive


But to get the best education you need money — yes, even in the public school systems.

  • FIRST kids need the basics — books, pens, trapper keepers, calculators, computers and more. Indiana Public schools charge families $500+ a year per child just for textbooks — and they rarely have enough books for all of the students.
  • SECOND, kids want to fit in — so, they need new & stylish clothes, smart phone, the latest athletic shoes, tickets to athletic events, tickets to dances, clothes for dances and more.
  • THIRD, extra-curricular involvement costs a lot of money — band, sports, and even student council, debate team, and service clubs require special equipment, uniforms, team photos, snacks, tickets, tournament fees, travel expenses and more.

Research proves that kids get a better education when they have the right supplies, don’t have anxiety about fitting in, aren’t bullied because they are poor, AND are able to participate in athletics, band, music, clubs and organizations, dance, and sporting events. News flash — ALL OF THIS IS EXPENSIVE.

National Retail Federation says on average, parents of kids in grades K through 12 will spend $670 on school supplies this year.  That includes clothes, shoes, and electronics.  PLUS in Indiana — public school “book rental” fees are typically $400+ per child — and if you have a high school athlete or musician, it’s another $40-100 not including personal equipment, tickets to games, team photos, and snack donations. School is very expensive — even public school.


Boost to the Economy


There is also evidence that it boosts the economy. Families love it, Retailers love it — so, if you’re a state legislator, why wouldn’t you just do it? They are very popular — all you have to do is go shopping in a Tax-Free Holiday State — and you will see excitement in the mall. It’s a great idea. Tax-Free Holidays have been adopted by conservative and liberal state legislatures. This is not a democrat or republican issue — this is a way to support families. This is a way of demonstrating as a public official that you acknowledge families, you support families, you support education and you actually want to have a positive impact.


US States with Tax-Free Holidays for 2015:


sales-tax-holiday-usmap-2015


  • Alabama Tax Free Weekend – August 7-9
  • Arkansas Tax Free Weekend – August 1-2
  • Connecticut Tax Free Weekend – August 16-22
  • Florida Tax Free Weekend – August 7-16
  • Georgia Tax Free Weekend – July 31-August 1
  • Iowa Tax Free Weekend, August 7-8
  • Louisiana Tax Free Weekend, August 7-8
  • Maryland Tax Free Weekend, August 9-15
  • Massachusetts Tax Free Weekend, August 15-16
  • Mississippi Tax Free Weekend, July 31-August 1; September 4-6
  • Missouri Tax Free Weekend, August 19-25
  • New Mexico Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • Ohio Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • Oklahoma Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • South Carolina Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • Tennessee Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • Texas Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9
  • Virginia Tax Free Weekend, August 7-9

Please sign this petition asking our Governor and state legislature to pass a similar law in Indiana. PLEASE SIGN & SHARE!


THANK YOU.

Father’s Day – I (still) Ain’t That Guy!

In father's day, fatherhood, Malavenda, Men, Pablo Malavenda, parenting on June 14, 2014 at 11:34 pm

happyFathersDay2014

You’re family’s weird — we overheard our son’s best friend say to him on speaker phone. What do you mean? Max asked. Well, his friend said, your dad is baking for church and your mom is outside cutting the lawn. Max then replied — yeah, my family breaks all the stereotypes.

Only two days ago, when I was explaining to a friend that I was having the hardest time finding anyone to fix the concrete steps at my church — she  replied — just do it yourself. My response was — you obviously don’t know me. I am handy around the house and all — but install a set of concrete steps — are you kidding?

Then there is the media and memes and greeting cards — I ain’t that guy!!

Greeting cards in general reinforce many negative stereotypes about men, women, and several other historically oppressed peoples. We may have come a long way from the racial and ethnic stereotypes in mainstream cards but problems still exist. As a feminist and a father of a daughter, I am aware of the role of women and girls in greeting cards as well as the images, colors, and characters used for girls versus boys. It starts with from conception with Baby Congratulations cards and continues on through Father’s Day and Mother’s Day cards, Anniversary cards, and general Birthday cards. Our best friend and his wife just welcomed a new baby girl, and we could only find a Minnie Mouse congratulations card – no Mickey – and of course it was pink. (There was a Mickey Mouse card but it was for a new born boy and it was blue).

Personally, there are two times a year I dread going shopping for greeting cards. One is my wedding anniversary and the other is for Mother’s Day. I also get frustrated during Father’s Day by all of the marketing and sales. It’s a great time to buy power tools, a lawn mower, a grill, golf clubs, hunting gear – because it is all on sale – for Fathers – but I Ain’t That Guy. My frustration stems from the fact that I was raised as a progressive, Mediterranean-American male – who does NOT fit any of the stereotypes of the typical man as defined by the greeting card industry or by any marketing that is gender-based.

Standing in the card store in front of the rack filled with greeting cards, I momentarily feel inadequate, left out, odd, and less than a man. I don’t golf, fish, drink beer, or demand dinner when I get home from a long day in the office. I DO cook and bake well; I work around the house; I respect my life partner (and still love her a lot); I love being a dad; I do laundry, iron, and put away clothes; I fill and empty the sink and dishwasher; I dress myself and do it pretty well; and I put the toilet seat back down. Eventually I realize that I am very, very OK with NOT being the “guy” in the Father’s Day, Mother’s Day or Wedding Anniversary cards. After a few minutes of browsing cards in our local greeting card store and online, I noticed some themes.


The message I saw is that Real Fathers:

  • Eat Beef not veggies
  • Don’t Cook – unless it is an Outdoor Grill or Deep Fried Turkey
  • Sit in Recliners
  • Sleep in Hammocks
  • Try to get out of doing Chores
  • Golf
  • Fish
  • Drink Beer
  • Leave the toilet seat up
  • Won’t Change a Diaper
  • Can’t Dress Themselves
  • Aren’t Romantic
  • Don’t Bake – unless you count pancakes from a mix
  • Demand Dinner after a long, hard day at work
  • Are Lazy, unorganized
  • Love cars (over human life partners)
  • Burp, Fart, Spend a lot of time in the bathroom, Snore
  • Lounge in underwear
  • Have bad tempers – Yell at their wives
  • Are not affectionate — don’t kiss, hold hands, hug
  • Love Bacon
  • Leer at young women in bikinis
  • Have a mustache
  • Need more tools
  • Smoke a pipe
  • Shoot guns
  • Insult their wives – joke about their weight, hair, looks, gray hair, cooking, etc.
  • Are mostly white, stupid, and straight

1963ish1 (2)My male role models in my family were studs – but they were respectful of their partners; they were romantic; could cook and did often; and dressed very well. They hugged and kissed their kids every day, said I love you to their wives, and went shopping, did laundry, and made dinner. Of course roles in relationships were different in the 1950’s, 1960’s, and 1970’s – but I am a combination of their great traits and the expectations of modern times. Why then do the greeting card writers and marketing gurus still perpetuate these archaic, primitive, unenlightened behaviors featuring beer loving, Neanderthals, sloths, chauvinists who can’t cook and prefer hunting and fishing and golfing more than being with their family?

So what’s up? I doubt if the only Father who doesn’t fit their mold is me. I am sure there are other Fathers, perhaps the majority of Fathers, who can’t relate to the males depicted in these greeting cards. In such a competitive, commercial, and capitalistic industry – if it didn’t sell, they wouldn’t keep making them. So, who are these guys? – And who’s buying these cards? Are we just so lazy that we can do nothing more than laugh at the negative stereotypes of Dads? – No matter how offensive it is to both men and women. Are we not protesting enough to see a more aggressive movement to influence change with the current messages in greeting cards – and the negative stereotypes that they are reinforcing? Or it is that I – once again – am the only one who cares? (Probably not.)

So, now I must go and bake for the church brunch, hug my wife, do the laundry, drive my son to cross country practice, call my mom, text my wife that “she’s beautiful and I miss her,” sew my daughter’s shirt, tutor my kids in math, go grocery shopping, and get dinner ready for the family.

This is what this Father is doing – so, call us weird — but there are NO complaints here — because I’ve got the BEST job in the entire world!


 

Read more stories about growing up in my family and our traditions, check out these PC Pop posts:


Flat Stanley travels to Indiana

In Books, Children, Children's Literature, Comic Books, Education, Family, History, Lafayette Indiana, Literacy Month, Malavenda, NEA, NPR, Pablo Malavenda, Purdue, Reading Across America, Story Book Leadership, WBAA on June 1, 2014 at 1:26 am

Dear Mrs. Egan’s Second Grade Class,


Thank you for sending Flat Stanley to visit me in Indiana. Flat Stanley and I have had a great time going to many of my favorite places in my hometown of West Lafayette as well as Lafayette and Battle Ground, Indiana.


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First, I gave Flat Stanley a tour of our neighborhood, which is called Hadley Moors. It’s named after Hadley Lake which is near our house. Next, I brought Flat Stanley to see one of the many corn and soybean fields in Indiana. Indiana corn and soybeans are used all over the world for lots of foods like popcorn, tofu, corn syrup, soy milk, and even ethanol gas for your cars.


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In addition to corn, Indiana is known as the “Crossroad of America” for many reasons including having lots of trains going through here. Flat Stanley and I are pictured on a bridge above the Four Corners Depot along the Wabash River in Downtown Lafayette.


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I then took Flat Stanley to school with me. I am a freshman at William Henry Harrison High School in West Lafayette. Besides my classes, my favorite activity at school is band. This year I played alto-saxophone in the marching band, the pep band and the jazz band. I also am on the cross country team.


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My high school is named after President William Henry Harrison. President Harrison was from Indiana; and as the Governor of the Indiana territory, he led the Battle of Tippecanoe.


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The Battle of Tippecanoe is one of the most important battles in the history of our country – and it took place in 1811 (over 200 years ago) in the next town over from me – Battle Ground, Indiana.


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Battle Ground is named for the site of this battle – the site of the battle is now a Registered National Landmark, with a statue of William Henry Harrison (see us below).


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Today, the Battle Field Park is a fun place to go to learn about the Battle of Tippecanoe and to hike on the trails along the river — but it also has lots of festivals throughout the summer. Two of my favorites are the annual Indiana Fiddlers’ Gathering (music festival) and the Steam and Gas Power Show.


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The battle took place near the Tippecanoe and Wabash Rivers.


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Our county is now named Tippecanoe; and the Wabash River separates our two cities – West Lafayette and Lafayette.


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The Wabash River flows right into the Mississippi River. There are several trails and bridges that go along and over the Wabash River. Flat Stanley and I explored a few different parts of the Wabash River during his stay.


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Downtown Lafayette is a fun place to visit. Today Flat Stanley and I attended the “’Round the Fountain” Art Fair and the Farmer’s Market.


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The county courthouse for Tippecanoe County is in Lafayette, Indiana on the other side of the Wabash River.


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Above is a picture of Flat Stanley and me with the Tippecanoe County Courthouse in the background. On top of the courthouse dome is a 14 foot statue representing “Liberty.” In December the dome is filled with lights for the holidays.

Lafayette and West Lafayette were named after Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, who was a famous French General who helped President George Washington in the Revolutionary War.

Here is Flat Stanley with me at the courthouse fountain with a statue of General Lafayette.


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Lafayette also has several big factories that make lots of the things you enjoy in Connecticut —— like Subaru Outback cars, Caterpillar equipment, and Alcoa aluminum, which is used to make aluminum bats. Here are pictures of Flat Stanley and me at these three factories.


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My hometown of West Lafayette is best known as the home of Purdue University.


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Purdue University is the flagship university of the State of Indiana. There are 40,000 students enrolled at Purdue.


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Here, Flat Stanley and I are pictured under the Purdue Alumni Gateway Arch and the Bell Tower. Look carefully at the base of the Bell Tower and you will see us. The bells in the Bell Tower play music — even the Purdue Fight Song.


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Purdue is named after John Purdue who gave land and money to the State of Indiana to start this state university. Flat Stanley and I are sitting below with the statue of John Purdue in front of the oldest building on campus, University Hall.


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Some of the famous alumni of Purdue include Orville Redenbacher (the popcorn guy); three NFL Super Bowl winning quarterbacks Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints), Len Dawson & Bob Griese (Miami Dolphins); John Wooden, basketball hall of famer; Ryan Newman, winner of the Daytona 500; Olympic gold medalist in diving, David Boudia; and 23 astronauts including Neil Armstrong.


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I actually got to meet Drew Brees when he was a student and heard Neil Armstrong speak at the dedication of this building — memories I will never forget.


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Pictured below is Flat Stanley and me with my friends at the Neil Armstrong statue in front of the Neil Armstrong Hall of Engineering.


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Purdue sports play in the Big 10 conference. They have lots of sports teams including basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, track & field, wrestling, swimming, diving, baseball, softball, rowing, sailing, rugby, gymnastics, ice hockey, and football.

Flat Stanley and I are pictured below at the Ross-Ade Stadium where Purdue plays football.


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I performed here with my high school marching band during half time of a Purdue football game last September. That was a very cool experience.

Flat Stanley and I visited the Grand Prix Track (a student go-cart race), and the soccer and baseball stadiums.


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We then went to the Purdue Boathouse, home of the Purdue Crew Team, on the Wabash River.


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I also took Flat Stanley to see the Purdue Airport. If you look closely in the upper left hand corner, you can see the air traffic control tower.


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At Purdue, students can learn how to be pilots, airport managers, and air traffic controllers. All kinds of planes fly in and out of this airport including some really fast jets. The sports teams also use this airport to travel to games.

West Lafayette is also the home of the Indiana Veterans’ Home. The Indiana Veterans’ Home is a place that helps all US veterans from the whole state of Indiana.


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I have been to the Veterans’ home many times to serve the veterans and to sing to them with my school choir on Veterans Day each November.


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The day we visited the Indiana Veterans’ Home there were lots of flags on display to celebrate and remember veterans on Memorial Day.

Flat Stanley and I then did a lot of my favorite things in town.

We started by visiting the Celery Bog and Nature Center.


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They have lots of cool programs like “how to catch fireflies.” My family often walk our dog, Bailey, on the trails here and ride our bikes on the bike trails.

We then went to the Tippecanoe Amphitheater. They have an outdoor stage where we have seen shows. There are trails here, too. The trails at the Amphitheater are the official cross country trails for my high school cross country team — so, I run these trails a lot.


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There are lots of great restaurants in our town. While Flat Stanley was visiting, we ate at two of my favorite restaurants. Below, Flat Stanley and I are sharing Broccoli Cheddar soup in a bread bowl at Panera Bread.


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Below we stopped at the Dog N Suds Drive-in restaurant and had Coney Island chili dogs and Dog N Suds root beer in a frosted mug. My friend, Brett’s dad owns Dog N Suds.


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Flat Stanley and I then went Bowling…


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and Played some Air Hockey and…


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Played a little bit of pocket Billiards (pool).


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I then took Flat Stanley to Von’s, my favorite local store. Von’s sells lots of stuff including comic books, books, and records/CDs/DVDs.


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We then went to the movies — which I love doing. We saw the new X-Men movie.


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The next day we went to the Columbian Park in Lafayette. Columbian Park is named after Christopher Columbus. It is a great park.


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It has a train that looks silly but is a lot of fun.


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It also has a really awesome water park called Tropicanoe Cove, which has water slides and a lazy river.


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The Columbian Park also has a Zoo. The Columbian Park Zoo is free!


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The Zoo has hedgehogs, miniature horses, spider monkeys, prairie dogs, chinchillas, foxes, singing dogs, goats, porcupines, tamanduas, pot-belled pigs, armadillos, wallabies, polecats, llamas, gibbons — and a lot of birds, reptiles and other animals.


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Flat Stanley liked the spider monkeys and gibbons the best. When I was your age — I attended a Zoo camp and had to milk a goat. We visit the park, especially the zoo, a lot in the summer.

Before Flat Stanley went home to Connecticut, I wanted him to see where my mother works. She is a news producer on National Public Radio at WBAA radio station. Flat Stanley used the microphone in the radio studio where my mom works.


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Lastly, Flat Stanley and I went to Mass at our church, St. Thomas Aquinas. It also happens to be where my father works as the parish administrator.


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Flat Stanley and I had a blast. I hope you enjoy seeing the pictures of all of the places Flat Stanley and I visited in Indiana.

Thank you again for sending Flat Stanley to me. See you soon.


Your friend (& first cousin once removed),


Maximilian Xavier


 

My Wish for Mother’s Day

In Family, Malavenda, mother's day, mothers, Pablo Malavenda, Uncategorized on May 11, 2014 at 8:04 am

My Wish for Mother’s Day


haring-keith-mother-holding-baby-1986For the Community

That Mothers receive a living wage ($15+/hour) so they may spend more time with their kids; that employers will willingly give Mothers health care – and not keep their hours below 30 to avoid it.


For the Country

That we create immigration policies that don’t rip children from their Mothers and separate them by a border.


For the World

The kidnapped girls in Nigeria get returned to their Mothers quickly and safely.


For my Family

That we remember how lucky we are to have such strong, smart, and dedicated women in our family — and to give them love and respect each moment of every day; that we are blessed with no debt, good food, controlled addiction, great health and many more opportunities to create family memories for the next generation.


{PS — It would also be nice to have no rain today — so we can go to the Columbian Park Zoo; and no line at HuHot Mongolian Grill for our Mother’s Day dinner.}


Peace. Happy Mother’s Day!