Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Crazy Train

I'm thankful that we are not responsible for making the majority of the Thanksgiving dinner this year. We are going to the house of some friends who kindly invited us. The most complicated thing we are bringing is homemade pumpkin pie, and Mr. BTEG is doing most of the work for that, with the girls helping. I don't even like pumpkin pie.

I've been tired lately. Not only am I on the go four afternoons a week and one morning, but Mr. BTEG's car needs some repairs and is temporarily sidelined. So I am driving Mr. BTEG to and from work at least three days a week. It's nice spending the extra time with Mr. BTEG, but I feel like I am spending half my life in the car and the other half shopping for food and doing dishes and laundry so we have meals and clean dishes and clothes for the next day. Yes, I do make the girls help out, but they have their school responsibilities also.

Speaking of spending time in the car, I also value the time I spend with the Equestrienne on the way home from her horseback riding class. She talks about one of her chief interests, horses, and what she's just done that day and what she plans for her riding future. Sometimes she opens up about other things. It's nice to spend time with her.

I spend most of my "together" time with the Dancer during our homeschooling time, and also on the way to and from her dance classes. It may seem too modern or cold to be spending so much time in the car, but I wouldn't change any of what we do. Except maybe for Mr. BTEG to get his car back. :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I'm Cranky

I'm cranky about a discussion on a post from September that seems to be getting nowhere. Can someone help me out? I don't see any room for rational discussion here and I'm tired of the whole thing.

I'm cranky about a website that stole one of my posts, in its entirety, without my permission and without any attribution. You can go search for your blog name and see if they've posted anything of yours without your permission. I've already discovered at least one person on my blogroll, who I doubt gave her permission either.

I'm cranky because one of my daughter's friends was dropped off in our complex by her parents without telling us or asking us to watch her, but we ended up watching her. They just moved out of our complex and their former residence is re-locked. I have no idea why they dropped her off here. She showed up at our door while I was rushing the Dancer out the door to dance class.

I'm cranky because my daughter's dance teacher took five minutes out of the beginning of ballet class to work with *one* girl on a routine she is working on for a talent show at her school. Yes, it was only five minutes, but I do pay for those minutes and I feel this showed poor judgment.

UPDATE: It was an accidental mistake that my post was listed with no attribution nor link and that I also found others I knew (if only online) with the same issue. It was upsetting to me to see my work taken with no acknowledgement of its author, but it appears they are fixing the problem.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

And It's My Favorite Color


You give your love and friendship unconditionally. You enjoy long, thoughtful conversations rich in philosophy and spirituality. You are very loyal and intuitive.

Find out your color at!

Via Nerd Family.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Women Stuff

I hate feeling like a zombie at least one day a month. A good burger and a scoop of double chocolate chunk ice cream (with huge, creamy chunks of chocolate) helped.

Oh, and it may be another month before the Equestrienne officially turns 13, but she went to her first concert tonight. Cheetah Girls. So she's well on her way to teen-dom.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

When Murder Becomes an Ideal

This is a chilling article that really brings home the devastation that China's one-child policy is visiting on that country. It also ties in how curtailing the human population has become almost an obsession with certain groups in society. The human sinful condition does mean that there are no depths to which our fallen natures cannot go, yet it is frightening to realize there are those who find the deaths of millions to be something praiseworthy and to which to aspire.

What is also chilling is that in our country we are about to get our most abortion-friendly president ever, who is comfortable even with babies, born alive through an accident, being left on shelves to die. One of his friends, who has admitted since the election that he is indeed a closer friend than they would admit to before the election, has called in writing for concentration camps to be set up to dispose of those who can not be coerced into their way of thinking. History has proven time and again that fellow human beings can become nothing more than liabilities to those whose ideology becomes a fixation, who decide they will literally stop at nothing to achieve their ideals.

What also diminishes the worth of human beings is the elevation of other life forms. I listened briefly to Glenn Beck's show yesterday while he played a quote from a television show on the Animal Planet channel called "Whale Wars." A young man who is part of a group actively fighting, on the front lines as it were, the killing of whales, stated in essence that he was happy he had found something worth dying for. Whales, part of God's creation, yes. Whales, worth dying for? As you can see from my previous post, I adore my pets. The loss of one of our feline friends has torn up my heart as well of those in my little family. But I do not understand putting animals above human beings. Why is the death of a whale worth more than the death of millions of human beings, even if you only see them as "fellow animals"? How is it that the lives of animals can become *more* important than the lives of our fellow human creatures?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Sorrow and Loss

Today we had to say goodbye to a dear friend, our beloved cat Champ. The initial problem was a sore in the mouth caused by decaying teeth. Today it was discovered that there was a cancerous tumor in the jaw that is almost impossible to treat longterm and might have taken most of his jaw to get out. On top of this, we also discovered he had diabetes, which further worsened his health prognosis. We decided the best thing to do was to end his life peacefully. Still, it broke our hearts to let him go.

He had been a member of our family longer than the Dancer. We brought his mother home when she was pregnant with him. We had him with us from before he was born until the day of his death. We were with him when he died. He was eleven years old. Now he can be with his brother and sisters, who died at birth.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

You Know How They Say

that spouses end up acting like each other? Well, when Mr. BTEG and I were in college together, I could have telephone conversations with him during which he was not awake for any of it. I was driving Mr. BTEG to work this morning, and I asked him how the football game ended last night. He said, "I told you last night when I came to bed. We had a whole discussion about it." I replied that I didn't remember having any conversation. I guess I'm turning into my husband!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Kick the Wretches Out

George Voinovich, Ohio Senator, wants an automaker bailout. Hardly surprising, on the face of it, since the auto industry is *huge* in Ohio. There's a Ford plant just down the way from us, and the GM Lordstown plant is one of the biggest employers for my husband's hometown of Youngstown. The problem is, where does it end? I was against the bailout to banks; I'm against the bailout to automakers. First of all, because I don't want to pay the bills for these companies that mess up. Second of all, because when do I get my share? I mean, really. We're not living in a cardboard box but we're not exactly living the high life here. No big house, no flashy cars, not a single luxury.... Oops, got carried away there. Okay, I don't really want a spot on the government dole. I'd be ashamed, not to mention that accepting a handout means you are beholden to the hand, and I'd rather be free and independent. But being free also means being free to decide how to spend your money, not have our supposed leaders just give out oodles of "free" money which is really ours.

So, how do the residents of Ohio get rid of "Cryin' George"? The answer is not a Democrat, as the Democrats in Ohio have plenty of corruption of their own. Not to mention the Democrats are largely supporting the automaker bailout as well, since they're best buddies with the autoworkers unions who have their own share in the woes of American auto companies. Will no one rid us of this meddling Senator?

Hat tip to IB for the automakers article.

For All of You Who Lived Through the 80's

My husband and I spent about fifteen minutes perusing the pictures here and being incredulous at what they considered mullets. Darth Vader's helmet? Um, I totally don't think so. Male pattern baldness? You don't have a mullet.

And by the way, keep this in mind.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I Know It's Silly But

I'm disappointed that American Girl is discontinuing the Samantha doll and her entire line. I have a Samantha doll and there were several things I wanted to get for her, but it was never a priority. You know how it is when you're the mom. Now the one thing I really wanted is sold out on AG's site and is two and a half times the price on eBay. Maybe the price will go down after Christmas. Anyway, I'm also disappointed because I think it shows one more mis-step in Mattel's handling of American Girl. I think the idea is to introduce more dolls from more time periods, but I don't see why they can't keep the ones they have. I thought Samantha was a pretty popular doll, and from one of my favorite time periods.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fall Cleaning

It's not so much fall cleaning as rearranging furniture and trying to make our living room work better, but there's lots of incidental cleaning going on in the process of moving and reorganizing. I've wanted to take pictures of my neat organizing stuff, but there's still too much clutter in front of it. :) We're making progress here, though. I'm still trying to teach myself that I can't do everything in one day.

In the meantime, Mr. BTEG is working on a new hobby - picking locks. Oh, yes. He found a cheap set of lock-picking tools online, and he has a nice selection of old locks that he's enjoying opening. I guess it's as good a hobby as any other as long as he doesn't get picked up by the local constabulary.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Needle News

The knitting project I have on hand at the moment is a scarf, in a colorful acrylic yarn. I made a mistake today knitting instead of purling a row, which led me to find another mistake, which was that I somehow added a stitch many rows back, so I had to unravel many rows back. That was frustrating, but I'm glad I found the mistake.

I may have to work on the scarf, but I already have a pair of mittens, thanks to a friend. Which is good, because I'm not sure I'm ready to use circular needles. This scarf is only my third project.

Speaking of projects, the Dancer is looking for activities to keep her busy, and she is trying to learn embroidery. Here she is with her practice stitches. She is really enjoying herself, and I hope she can go far with this interest.

Martin Luther Ist Zurück!

Imagine my pleasure at discovering, at Aardvark Alley, that Martin Luther has returned to the blogging world! It's great to have him back!

Friday, November 07, 2008

How's the Sickie?

Movie quote! I went to the doctor today and got some antibiotics as what ails me has been here long enough that it's probably not viral. I also got some prescription cough medicine. No codeine. Codeine and I don't get along. Hopefully once I am not up during the night coughing I will feel like tackling life fully again. I have a huge list awaiting me. :)

Thursday, November 06, 2008


Boarding school starting at least the junior high level, with good horseback riding program. Small pets allowed in dormitories a plus.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Immigration Complications

So if DH and I wanted to move to New Zealand, we couldn't, because we don't meet their weight guidelines. A German doctor who has emigrated to Australia, whose services are needed by the community he lives in, has been denied permanent residency because one of his sons has Down's Syndrome, and it was ruled that the son's condition would be "likely to result in a significant and ongoing cost to the Australian community." In the UK, fat children are being taken away by the state. And the insanity is not limited to other countries. The U.S. is now requiring all female immigrants ages 11 to 26 get the controversial vaccine Gardasil, whereas it is only recommended for female residents of the same age in the U.S. And what is driving all these restrictions? Shared health care cost concerns. Whether because of nationalized health care or group health care plans, low costs must be maintained in order for service to be provided.

What does this really result in? Government tyranny, and bad precedents that will only get worse. Will the government start directly overseeing the food you eat? Will the government attach some monitor to you to make sure you get what they consider is enough exercise? Will the government force pregnant women who are carrying children with Down's Syndrome or other equal conditions that can cause lifelong health issues to abort? Will older people, or anybody with a terminal illness, be "exterminated"? Where does it stop? I am bi-polar, and the medications I require to avoid suicidal fixations are rather expensive. But everybody at one point in their life or another, and often at more than one point, needs some kind of costly health care. None of our bodies are perfect. And health care improvements can be best brought about by a chance for profit. Do we want to live in a world without continuing improvements in medical care through medical research?

I don't know what the ideal health care plan is. But I think all of us would best be served by keeping the government jackboots out.

(And don't get me started on the hypocrisy of forcing legal immigrants to get otherwise optional vaccines but showering illegal immigrants with free health care and housing and making no requirements of them.)

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Halloween Eve

It was a lovely evening in Northeast Ohio for trick-or-treating, or just sitting outside and enjoying the evening while handing out a bit of candy. After the girls made the rounds of the neighborhood, we took the girls and a friend to Dave and Buster's. Mr. BTEG and I were there last weekend to sit at the bar and watch football; we picked up some Halloween game pieces and won $200 in free game tokens, which were redeemable on Halloween. Mr. BTEG and the girls played lots of games; I rested quite a bit in the car, since I am still sick. My fellow Lutherans in church this morning noticed that my voice is just about gone. Today is a good day to kick back and watch football.