Here's a picture of one of the nice gifts that I received, a new bicycle, in pretty blues and pinks. Come spring, I can be walking or bicycling!
Thursday, December 27, 2012
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Anyway, a very interesting night. There was classical music, and a trio singing Christmas carols (the bass was sick), all from the Cleveland Institute of Music. I think I'd like to try it when a different music genre was there. I guess I'm totally uncool, but most of the modern classical stuff didn't really cut it for me. Especially one piece where either the piano was wildly out of tune, or there were notes that deliberately sounded grating to the ear. Physically painful, even.
We had a chance to see hipsters in their natural habitat. Lots of them. I took anthropological notes. :D
For some reason, I really found it funny that atop the upright piano, was a bust lamp of Elvis. A very large bust of Elvis. In blues. The lampshade shook when the modern classical musicians were pounding on the piano keys, but Elvis stayed solid.
This bar serves hot dogs, tater tots and french fries, and beer. However, you can get about thirty different toppings for your hot dogs and tater tots. Including mole, the Mexican chocolatey stuff. Which, no.
I found it interesting that the cellist, who looked very Korean, was named Carlos.
Friday, December 07, 2012
Friday, November 30, 2012
Dancer: "I can't remember whose turn it is. It's hard to keep track."
Mom: "That's why I put up the chore chart months ago, with all the days and the chores."
Dancer: "But we never use it."
That look a cat gives you when she is rolling around in some sort of almost-catnip-fueled type abandon and sees you watching her. "Oh. Hai. Didn't see you there."
You know your best friend is your best friend when you give each other the same Christmas gift. And when you can't actually wait until Christmas to exchange gifts.
I'm really tired of having to put paragraph breaks in by hand because Blogger doesn't seem to recognize the return key anymore. Especially when I forget and then go to look at my blog post actually on my blog.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Oh, and I also opened up a huge can of World War III with my inlaws over the weekend.
Monday, November 26, 2012
If you ever read Ace of Spades, you are well familiar with the Let It Burn concept. The idea that this country is too far in debt and has too large of a lazy, self-centered populace that likes to be ignorant and plans on staying that way, means the country is at some point going to collapse. So, let's get the party started now. If you believe at some point this house of cards is all going to come down, then why delay the pain? And part of Letting It Burn is destroying the entertainment and media industries. If you were paying attention, you may have noticed that during the run-up to the election, an enormous majority of celebrities may not have been calling our current president their lord and savior, but they are certainly behind him, and quite happy to demonize anyone who isn't. If you're a reader who knows me from Martin Loopers, you probably don't watch much television already, and may not have cable. I'm trying to persuade Mr. BTEG to at least cancel our Sirius satellite radio subscription, if not our cable. I want us to avoid as many movies as possible, especially the ones where the more vocal Obama supporters are stars. Tell me why any of the liars, tramps, sluts and thieves in Hollywood deserve my family's money. Let them feel the economic depression/recession just like the rest of us.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
I've always suspected that I had SAD. After all, winter is the hardest time of the year for me, emotionally. February was the month when I reached an breaking point bad enough to land me in a mental hospital. But the bad weather last month compressing it all into a solid week really convinced me. I've been pretty good about upping my Vitamin D consumption in the winter, but since we are blessed enough to have very good health insurance coverage at the moment, my psychiatrist is supporting me in trying phototherapy. Mr. BTEG is working through the insurance channels/hoops to get a light box. I'll probably update when we get one, after I've used it for a while.
My other struggle, besides craving sunlight, is craving carbs. I haven't talked about it here, but late this summer, I started eating less, trying to cut back on carbs, cutting out as much high fructose corn syrup as possible, and walking. I did manage a little bit of weight loss. But now my ankle injury has messed up my walking habit, and as winter comes on I find myself craving carbs as I haven't in a long time. Mr. BTEG, who did some research on light boxes and SAD, tells me that craving carbs in the winter is nature's way of putting us into a sort of hibernation. Well, I was certainly in hibernation mode after that week of gray and rain. But I can't do that all winter. Maybe the phototherapy will help with the carb cravings.
Oh, and Mr. BTEG also discovered that light therapy can cause someone who is bipolar to go into a manic state, or a mixed state. Swell. My mixed states are the worst ones of all. I guess we'll have to play that one by ear as well. Happy Winter!
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
My name is Barb the Evil Genius, and I am a terrible parent. I homeschooled one daughter for five years, and the other for four years. The reason why the Musician was only homeschooled for four years was because she was fighting my attempts to homeschool her, and we put her into an online school for a year, rather than put her in a school district that we were planning on leaving in a year.
Now both daughters are in public school, happy and doing well. This obviously means that I am a poor parent, since even after many years of homeschooling, my daughters prefer being smothered and subjugated in a public school. They enjoy being around, and learning with, large groups of their peers, even though many of the peers are sometimes unkind, selfish, lying, thieving, have emotional issues, do drugs and sleep around. To be honest, my girls can be thoughtless, tactless, selfish, and lose their tempers. My youngest occasionally resists the urge to inflict bodily harm on her classmates when she finds their stupidity frustrating (what can I say, she's my little girl,) and yet she prefers public school to homeschooling. This makes me a terrible parent. They should prefer being at home with just the other sister, and having the one-on-one interaction with me as their teacher.
When my daughters were homeschooled, they were not intrigued to find out how birds built their nests, nor interested in becoming Mozart-like composers, learning open-heart surgery, or welding a scale-model Eiffel Tower in the garage. If given the opportunity, my daughters would spend a great deal of their time surfing My Little Pony memes on the internet and playing Super Paper Mario. This obviously makes me a poor parent.
My youngest daughter takes medication for her ADHD. This is to help her concentrate on her work, sit still and be quiet. Definitely I am in the poor mom category here. ADD and ADHD are just made up labels to force brainwashed children to mindlessly behave in a stifling system. My daughter would learn so much more if she was homeschooled. Talking non-stop and doing cartwheels through the backyard to work off her energy would serve her so much better. At least she could concentrate while she was playing Super Paper Mario.
So when you hear, "You can homeschool your kids too! Public school is always the worst choice!", just remember, that is only true if you are a good mom. My name is Barb the Evil Genius, and I am not a good mom.
Monday, November 19, 2012
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Not only that, but in an illness-induced haze the other night, I tripped badly getting out of bed and have barely been able to walk for the past few days, with rather impressive bruising and swelling on my left foot. To add insult to (literal) injury, having a left-foot injury and having a stick-shift car means I can't even drive, even if I could limp out to the car.
On a related note, one of my favorite catch-phrases has been: "That's part of the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom." Because being a stay-at-home mom is such a luxury, or at least that seems to be a popular opinion. I've also seen a couple of things lately that made me realize that lots of people think that non-automatic windows in cars are a thing of the past. Well, only for those who don't have the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom.
Monday, November 12, 2012
You know, abstaining from random sex and not having a lot of sexual partners, whether hetero- or homosexual, would "reverse some of our nation's most common" diseases. I guess temple prostitutes are cool with Gaia.
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
There has been damage in the area, mostly due to downed trees and the inevitable flooded basements. I don't see any reports of loss of life in this area, which is a blessing. Areas south of us got snow. I think Lake Erie is still too warm for us to get any snow -- yet.
Halloween trick-or-treating has been moved to Sunday evening, which is also a good thing. Otherwise, all the girls, at least, could have been dressed like Mary Poppins: carrying umbrellas and being blown by the wind down the street.
Having no power all day, we went out to dinner last night. The restaurant we chose was totally slammed, but considering that the biggest shopping metropolis in the area, Crocker Park, was without power, I doubt we could have avoided a crowd anywhere else. We did get a free appetizer and an extra salad out of the deal due to confusion. I hope the servers raked in a higher than usual amount of money for a Tuesday night.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Thursday, October 04, 2012
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Thursday, September 20, 2012
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
My main health issue is mental, not physical. I am bipolar. This requires a psychiatrist to keep an eye on my mental state and help me adjust my medications accordingly. Thank God, I am currently in a good mental place in general and do not need to see my psychiatrist very often, nor switch my medication around. When things are more difficult for me, I sometimes see a counselor as well. Then of course both Mr. BTEG and I have a general physician, and our daughters have their health care needs too.
All of this brings me to an article about cutting out waste in health care. It caught my eye because the example patient, Harold, has rheumatoid arthritis, which is related to autoimmune issues, and because the author holds up the Cleveland Clinic as a model at the end of his article.
The Cleveland Clinic is, in general, definitely a good place to receive health care. It has a world-class reputation and some of their doctors are at the forefront of knowledge of various diseases and disorders. One of the problems I see in Cleveland, however, is that the Cleveland Clinic and its "rival," the University Hospital system, have largely sucked up most of the hospitals and many of the health care practices in the greater Cleveland area. Competition is good, and I would not want to see either the Clinic or UH completely dominate the Cleveland health care market.
However, having so much of a market controlled by two large systems also has its drawbacks. Both the nearest hospital to our home, and the best pediatric hospital in Cleveland, Rainbow Babies' and Children's, are in the UH system. Our family currently works with many doctors in the Cleveland Clinic system, both because of proximity to our house and because the percentage of solo practices does seem to be smaller. What if there is an emergency and we need to go to the nearest hospital, or one of our daughters, God forbid, gets an illness where a stay at Rainbow would mean the best care? First of all, that completely wipes out one of the advantages that the author above presents, which is computerized health records all in one place and readily available, due to everything being "under one roof." Secondly, doctors were already limited in what hospitals they could work with because of insurance. Would my daughters' pediatrician even have any privileges at Rainbow? But again, I would not like to see monopolization as the answer!
Secondly, we in the BTEG household know a lot about problems with health insurance. Our previous insurance provider would not pay for a very expensive health treatment which would have helped with all of Mr. BTEG's autoimmune disorders, similar to the problems Harold had with paying for Humira and Enbrel, which also work with autoimmune issues. However, Harold is also held up as an issue for waste when his declining health, based on not receiving the best medication for his issues, is mismanaged due to a multiplicity of doctors and lack of knowledge about his overall medical history.
Mr. BTEG prefers to have the freedom to choose his own doctors, whether they are in a particular system or not. Neither his gastro nor his endo doctors are in the Cleveland Clinic system; however, they are both excellent in their fields and moreover, they know each other professionally and readily share information with each other concerning my husband's issues (after my husband's consent is obtained.) Just recently, his gastro passed on taking bloodwork because his endo had also recently completed a blood panel, and "Dr. S is one of the few who knows what to get." Waste avoided, but not for the reasons our author describes. Also important, my husband "clicks" with his doctors. It is equally important for a patient to click with her psychiatrist and counselor. Sometimes it can take a while to find a health pro with whom you can feel comfortable. When it is already work to find the right doctor for you, why be even more constrained by what medical center, if any, they work for?
Is there waste in the medical field? Heck, yes. And steps should definitely be taken to avoid as much waste as possible. I simply disagree with what quality care must look like.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Monday, September 10, 2012
Friday, September 07, 2012
Monday, August 27, 2012
I had to order the main skein of yarn that I need online. My imaginary Internet friend Naomi suggested I could just use any yarn that had the correct gauge, but this particular cotton yarn is wrapped, which is supposed to keep the yarn from stretching as much. I imagine that would be a good thing for a bag.
Oh, and I'm not going to provide a link for Judy's Magic Cast On, as there are many videos and articles describing how you can do this. Just do a search and take your pick as to what works best for you.
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
If you need a palate cleanser, watch this video of students from the Burke School perform an Irish dance to Hang On Sloopy, Ohio State's song. This is a better video than the one that I have, but I took one of this dance the same year. I think you can see Mr. BTEG and I off to the left of the screen every so often.
Monday, August 20, 2012
Women and girls who do face a surprise or unwanted pregnancy do need help and support. What a lot of right-to-death proponents gloss over is the fact that many pro-life people are providing help and support right now. Sadly, not everyone can get the help they need. However, not everyone finds, say, the mental health help they need either. Suicide is the final result far too often. Even having money and connections does not always make struggles easy. How many Hollywood stars have self-destruced, often due to awful things that happpened to them as they rose through the ranks to stardom? With the money for the best counseling and mental health retreats, some people still can't completely rid themselves of their demons. And again, the result is death.
I used to have at least a sort of sympathy for those who claimed they were only in favor of abortion until the baby was viable outside of the womb. I wanted to meet them halfway, hoping that they would develop into people who were pro-life for even the youngest and most vulnerable of those in the womb. Vulnerable. Even the infants that are born full-term are horribly vulnerable. How can we welcome some of these, and essentially tell others that they have no right to live, after being given life without their consent or their will? Look at the picture here of a developing human only seven weeks after conception. He looks a little odd, but he is undeniably human. Not a clump of cells. Not a bunch of tissue. Human. And one's belief in a God or gods or no deity at all does not change this. If you are not afraid of being punished by a deity for killing the life of a unique individual whose body is daily growing and taking shape, does that mean that life does not matter if you find it an inconvenience? The story below is where we end up, and it does not and will not end there. What kind of a society do we want to be? That is our true choice.
Saturday, August 18, 2012
But something I read recently made me very sick at heart, and it preyed on my mind for quite a while that evening. A woman was talking about how she and her boyfriend of a year just found out that the boyfriend is a father of a child, the product of a one-night-stand. At which point, a few commenters talked about how it is not "fair" that the woman didn't just abort the child. Well, first of all, as I am fond of saying, life ain't fair. And why supposedly grown adults should still think that any part of life should be "fair" is beyond me. How is it fair that a person should not have to live with the consequences of his behavior?
But the worst part is what easy abortion is doing to people's hearts and minds. People who probably think that they are "good" people are, in essence, saying that there is a baby out there who should not have been born. A human being who should not exist. That someone should not have been allowed to draw his first breath not because of what he had done, but because of what his biological parents did. Not only that, complete strangers on the internet feel free to postulate on whether a child should have been allowed to live. How much more twisted will we become?
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Saturday, August 11, 2012
Wednesday, August 08, 2012
Sunday, August 05, 2012
Have you seen any of the videos where two songs are mashed together? Like Thunderbusters? Well, the DCI corps Music City out of Nashville, Tennessee, presented a program called Phantom of the Grand Ole Opery. Somehow they managed to weave in Ring of Fire and the theme song Phantom of the Opera, then Your Cheatin' Heart and Music of the Night. They also played Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), Point of No Return, Stand By Your Man and All I Ask of You. The male color guard members wore Phantom style half-masks for most of their performance. I couldn't help but think how hot it must have been to wear those.
All the DCI groups had some kind of "theme," although some of them were more obvious than others. The thing I noticed most about the 7th Regiment out of New London, Connecticut, was the drum major. With a fu manchu mustache, large but well built, he looked like he could be a bouncer during the rest of the year. With the Vanguard Cadets out of Santa Clara, California, the theme was Heroes and Legends, and we got a beheading(!).
It was a fun night if you enjoy marching bands (minus the woodwinds.) If nothing else, the work that the kids put in should definitely be appreciated.
Wednesday, August 01, 2012
I'm sorry I can't write anymore right now. I'm finding it really hard to concentrate lately. More about that later.
Saturday, July 14, 2012
Unfortunately, Maryville, Missouri was... boring. I was hoping to find some yarn stores or some fabric/quilting stores, but there weren't any. There was the Mozingo Lake Park and Golf Course, but I don't fish or play golf, and it was too hot to do any walking. We had the additional misfortune of hitting Maryville right when the big heat wave swept the Midwest.
Actually, Maryville is in rather sad shape. It has three large employers: an enormous Kawasaki engine plant, Northwest Missouri State University, and a jail. However, there were many empty storefronts in the city square, and there were two burnt-down restaurants and a vacant lot where it looked like something had been torn down. The one restaurant seemed to be in the process of rebuilding, but the other one was just there. No indication that it was going to be rebuilt and reopened anytime soon. It's sad that even with employment in the area, it has still felt the effects of the recession.
One interesting thing about the prison compound, there was an enormous church inside the fence, and one of the other buildings looked like it could have been a school building at some point. Mr. BTEG and I wondered if it could have been a regular church and school before becoming part of a prison.
At least the main part of our trip was successful. The Dancer and the Musician got lots of Law and Gospel, learned a lot about the faith, made new friends and got to hang out with old friends they hadn't seen since last year. Is it silly to say that seeing so many kids greeting each other after a long time apart, seemed almost like a foretaste of heaven?
Saturday, July 07, 2012
Thursday, July 05, 2012
How do you celebrate the Fourth? When I was a kid, like Karen's family a carnival came to my hometown, and still does, every year. We would buy the all day wrist string and ride the rides all day long. At night would be the fireworks over Lake Erie. We would sit in the large grassy area across the street from the carnival area with our blankets and chairs and watch the show. Somewhat unenjoyable was the way the loudest fireworks would echo off of the middle school building behind us.
When my own girls were young, my cousin and her kids, about the same age as mine, would come and visit her parents in the Wooster area, and my mom, sisters and families, and my family, would be invited for the Fourth. What was especially nice was that my aunt and uncle lived in a neighborhood with a private lake, and they had a boat, plus we had swimming and playing in the sand with the little ones. I never tried waterskiing or tubing behind the boat, but I did like riding in it. My cousin's husband, formerly in the Navy, was especially fun to ride with. After driving an aircraft carrier, he could make being in my uncle's little boat rather exciting. Now my aunt and uncle have moved to Virginia to be closer to my cousin and her family and those days are just memories. It's a shame my kids can't see their second cousins more, as they are a lot closer in age to them than they are to their first cousins. My Musician and my cousin's oldest son are just a few months apart.
My family has yet to create any new tradition for our Fourth of July celebrations since, but these are the years of flux, as my teens start getting involved in their own activities more and more. I wonder what will develop next!
Sunday, June 10, 2012
The first is Maudlynne McCobb. Say that name out loud. Yes, Tonner is continuing his interest in the dark, the gloomy, even the supernatural side of life. As long as that supernatural is ghosties and ghoulies and things that go bump in the night. Maudlynne was inspired by characters such as Wednesday Addams, and she does have a mournful attractiveness, but what struck me was the end of her online bio. "Maudlynne was home-schooled for most of her life until her parents noticed her peculiar nature and decided it was time for her to socialize a bit more with regular kids." Do you see a bit of stereotyping there? I do. Believe me, there are "irregular" kids everywhere. And will Maudlynne become more "normal" by socializing with "regular" kids? Homeschoolers, what do you think?
One of their other lines is well-meaning, but in this present culture, I find it more humorous than anything else. This line of dolls is the City Girls. "Freshly matriculated from college, these fresh, young and energetic ladies are all ready to take on the world and follow their dreams. Whether at work, a networking function or just out for a night on the town, they’re ready to dazzle and shine!" They may have decided to follow Nancy Pelosi's advice about choosing a career to follow their dreams, but the way things are nowadays, I think the next dolls in the series should be the OWS dolls, freshly matriculated from college with a mountain of debt. Accessories could include a dish of paté (pesky homeless person not included) and a bag of feces. Deposit it on a police car or just leave it lying around the tent city you can create for your OWS dolls! At least Mummy and Daddy can cover your health insurance until you're 26, in case you pick up an STD during a furtive fumble in that cute guy's tent.
Seriously, shouldn't we be getting over the idolization of the "Career Woman"? I do think it's fine for women to work, but I'm tired of the "Glamor Job" being held up as some sort of ideal. How many men do you know that have a job, or even a career, that holds any sort of glamor? Sitting in a cube farm, riding around in a truck all day delivering mail, cutting lumber at the home improvement store, stocking groceries -- none of these are glamorous, and I doubt anyone dreamed about someday performing these tasks, but as Thomas Sowell points out, what academia considers "menial" work is also necessary work, and "Some people take justifiable pride in working to take care of their families, whether or not the work itself is great." I think being making enough money to support oneself, and being able to support your children, may not being as exciting as taking on the world and following your dreams, but in the long run it's probably much more realistic.
Friday, June 08, 2012
Right now, I'm a mom whose life is still rather wrapped up in her family. My marriage is always important, and yes, my kids are older, but they still need someone to support their interests, to drive them to activities and friends' houses, and most importantly, to listen to them. I was brought up in a rather sheltered environment, so I have no idea what the "old days" were like, but today it seems rather unusual for a kid to not be dealing with parental divorce, or parental drug or alcohol use, or some kind of parental abuse, or parental suicide, or to be using drugs or engaged in free and easy sexual activity, or even considering suicide themselves. And we live in one of the "good" suburbs. Not only do my children need parental support for themselves, they need someone to talk to when someone they know cuts himself, or loses a parent.
Besides which, I enjoy being with them! I like hearing about what they are doing now and what they want in their future. I am transitioning to more time spent on me, and on wife-husband time, but I also want to not fritter away the years before my children set out on their own lives. Despite feeling the weight of hitting midlife, I do still have a lot ahead of me. Right now, my family still takes up a lot of it.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Monday, May 21, 2012
Friday, May 04, 2012
Tuesday, May 01, 2012
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
I also like pets. We've always had cats as they fit our lifestyle better. Hmmmm. The last president to have a cat as a pet was Clinton. And the cat got dumped on someone else as soon as they left the White House. So, scratch that.
I'm a mom, but I don't want to see a president wearing mom jeans ever again!
I'm terrible at sports, but I would like to have a president who doesn't totally embarrass himself throwing out a first pitch. On the other hand, I really don't care what the president's ESPN basketball picks are.
Which reminds me, I also do not want to see any more presidents or first ladies on any reality shows, awards shows or sports shows. You know what's reality? Unemployment, high gas prices, massive inflation.
Wednesday, April 04, 2012
When the incumbent president has once again disabled credit card verification on credit card donations, maybe it's a good thing the guy the Republicans are running is rich. He can use some of his own money to back himself when he doesn't get a contribution from "Adolf Hitler."
Friday, March 30, 2012
Certainly, there are social conservatives out there, or socons, who would like to pass very totalitarian rules about sex and alcohol and divorce and etc. There are also people like Alinsky who would like to put people like me in a camp. The socons who are that restrictive are a very small portion of the population, just as, honestly, the Alinskyites are. It's very unfortunate that an Alinsky disciple happens to be in power, but I don't think even all socialists would go so far as to put people in camps.
You see, even though I am a strong socon, I also happen to be a strong ficon, and I'm also big on being left alone. In the long run, politics IS really all about power, but it's as much whether the people have it or the government has it, as who in the government has it at the moment. The more power the government has, the less power I as an individual have, and I will always fight against that state of things. I will admit to being against abortion, because I view it as murder, and because it is, as socons predicted, leading towards euthanasia policies for the elderly, those who are not perfect physically or mentally, inconvenient children who will force you to shop at Costco, or even perfectly viable infants. Other issues, I don't really care about, AS LONG AS you pay for it or deal with the consequences of it yourself. It is not a hardship for you to pay for your birth control if your insurance carrier does not provide it. As a conservative, I would say, go find some other insurance carrier that does. My family has gone through some difficult times. We are going through some difficult times right now, actually, thanks to Obamacare. But we look to ourselves and not the government to help us through. Getting rid of some of the rules and regulations we are forced to live under would help us even more.
So there you are, an Evil Genius' view of the political world. I put it here, because this is my space, and politics is one of the things I choose to discuss here. I won't bring it up on my doll blog (such as it is) or in forums that are not political. Unless you bring it up first. Then, I am working to sharpen my political Breitbart. It seems to be a skill that is more and more required.
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Monday, March 19, 2012
Thursday, March 15, 2012
The other girl does online school, I am fairly certain, because her parents are very strict Jehovah's Witnesses. This girl was not allowed to dance to "Monster Mash" at the dance school during the Halloween season, so I imagine that going to public school might have been awkward for her.
I wonder if the biggest growth in learning at home is going to be these online schools. I know many people who are intensely committed to teaching their children at home, themselves, but many of the parents I see would never have the interest in doing this. And to be honest, of the many people I know who homeschool, many have children who have some sort of learning difficulty or disability. Sometimes I wonder if too many people change "homeschool is great for my kid" into "homeschool is great for every kid" far too easily.
Of course, one of the things that makes me wonder about learning at home is the level of brokenness I have seen now that my daughters are attending public school and they know so many kids. Going way beyond things like divorce, too many parents are dealing with problems in their own lives, sometimes in unhelpful ways. I was blessed enough to be able to work around my own issues, for the most part, when my kids were little, but it's not always possible. At least charter schools and online schools are getting parents to think outside of the public school box. Options are always good.
Monday, March 12, 2012
How has the increase in the frequency and availability of media helped you enjoy something in your life? Here's another example: today one can watch even preseason baseball games on television. Interviews with players and managers, details about trades, it's all so much easier to find out things and watch things happening than ever before.
Wednesday, March 07, 2012
Sunday, February 26, 2012
Thursday, February 16, 2012
I am glad that my church body was represented this morning, but I am cynically afraid that it will not do much good. We already know that the beliefs and the alliances of the left do not understand, much less align with any religious conviction. Indeed, I firmly believe that most of the members of our government only align their thoughts and beliefs with the acquisition and use of power. Still, those of us who have a conscience, and have Christian faith, must not be ashamed to let those temporarily in power on this earth know where we stand.
Friday, February 10, 2012
Unfortunately, I can't control everything. (Yes, sometimes I wish that I could.) Whatever comes, we can deal with it together. I'd like to write more, but I really am very physically worn out, and my brain is just not working today! I'm glad the weekend is here.
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Of course, the east side of Cleveland, and south of Cleveland (i.e. Strongsville) seem to be doing better economically. But, and especially in a town that is bordered on one side by an "inland sea," such as Cleveland, I can't see one side of a county, a major metropolitan area, getting worse economically without the rest of the area eventually feeling it. The Strongsville area's only saving grace at the moment may be that Summit County has a sales tax rate on the lower end of the state.
I may be biased by having spent most of my life on the west side of Cleveland, but I do believe the area has a lot to offer. The lake, for one thing. Boating, fishing, personal watercraft. Lots of nice park areas in the Metropolitan Park System. While not at the level of an NYC or LA, there are also nice museums, concerts and plays. That this area may be turning into another Detroit is not only sad, but seems such a waste. There is no reason, that I can see, that this area should be dying, besides poor management by the politicians that run it, the same thing that has decimated Detroit.
And speaking of poor management, I have to put in a note of disgust for the city planners of Avon, OH. They allowed an enormous grove of trees to be chopped down, to make room for more stores. The problem is, the trees have been gone for months, and there is no sign of any new stores coming. So everyone who drives on I-90 through Avon gets to see an open area full of mud and tree stumps, which may stay only mud and tree stumps for a very long time. Yes, there is a new freeway exit going in a little further down the street, but that won't be ready for at least a year, and Avon already has most of the major big box stores and, I believe, all of the local grocery stores. Plus, one of the big reason the exit is being built is to relieve rush hour congestion for the two exits on either side. Will it really bring any new people? And yes, the far west side into Lorain County does seem to be doing well. But how many of those are people fleeing Cuyahoga County for Lorain County? Can that area keep it up? Or will the near west side eventually drag it down as well? I'm not optimistic, given the the sluggish economy and poor city leaders.
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
I'm a relatively small blogger, only one person, so I guess my opinion doesn't matter to companies. And to be honest, one customer really does mean nothing to them in the grand scheme of things. However, one unhappy person can sometimes turn into a whole online community of unhappy people. In the gaming community, a huge drama occurred when one lowly gamer tried to get some information from the PR firm for a company that was creating a good product, but had the misfortune to hire someone functionally illiterate and terminally rude to represent it. Here is an email back and forth between the lowly gamer, Mr. Illiterate, and a man who just happens to run one of the most popular webcomics that gamers read. Christoforo thought he could be rude to one person, and found himself the laughing stock and butt of jokes all over the Internet. For a final laugh, look at this Bing search to see how one of Christoforo's more "unfortunate" phrases has gone completely viral.
Some of the blowback may have gone too far against Christoforo, so I will say right here that I'm not threatening anyone. I don't want a huge online flame war, nor people's personal information or family members to be targeted. I'm just one little person who would like her concerns responded to, but it seems you have to have clout before you get noticed.
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
I see now that this was probably my real problem all along. I had no greater end to work toward. I was not good at sports; could never have been good at sports. Not only am I under 5'4", but I also have relatively short legs (27" inseam.) And relatively short arms, and small hands. No one ever told me this stuff, though. I knew I wasn't tall, but for the rest, I just felt clumsy and awkward. Without a specific activity to pursue, my interest in exercise merely for exercise's sake decreased rapidly as I grew older.
However, after taking mother-daughter dance classes with the Dancer, I realize that I enjoy dance. Of course, I'll never be "good" at it, but it's something that I can do on my own, as opposed to a group sport, and much less expensive than something where you have to join, like a YMCA for swimming. (Not that I am a good swimmer, either.) And you can do it all year long, which matters in northeast Ohio! The real break-through for me, though, is why I hated exercise, and why it seems to make sense now.
BTW, my daughter's dance studio has started offering Zumba for adults, but I don't think I'm up to that, yet!!
Monday, January 16, 2012
If you want more of my thoughts, and the background on the V-Day movement, see below, but suffice it say that it is a very political movement, and I was disturbed to see that a sewing magazine is promoting it. I really don't care what the politics of people in a sewing magazine are. I don't think it's at all necessary for me to know. A sewing magazine should be about sewing! Now I'm wondering if the magazine just wanted to promote what is at bottom a good cause, reducing violence against women, or if they are so far in the left wing tank that they don't even realize they are left wing. See the latest cover of Newsweek for a media outlet who isn't even trying to hide it anymore.
I sent off a quick email to Sew News yesterday. I'll let you know if I hear back. I'm expecting the "sorry if you were offended" nothing sauce, but I may be pleasantly surprised.
Some hard-core leftist feminists apparently don't enjoy watching others celebrate romance and happiness on Valentine's Day. They had to come up with V-Day, to highlight violence against women. As the article I linked too describes, yes, violence against women is tragic, it is real, and it should be stopped whenever possible. However, linking it with Valentine's Day is seen by many women, like the women of the Independent Women's Forum, and myself, as an assault on normal, romantic relationships between men and women. My husband and I have a stable and loving relationship. I chose to get married, to have children, to be a stay-at-home mom. My husband and I made the decision for me to homeschool our children, and we ultimately made the decision to send them to public school. I'm not a victim of the patriarchy. Since most of my regular readers are also in stable marriages, I think you would agree that marriage and family can be a good thing.
Where the left-wing feminists go wrong in their V-Day approach, I think is two-fold. One, linking violence against women to simple, everyday loving marriages and male-female relationships. Two, thinking that constantly drawing attention to something will somehow magically end it. How much sense does pushing "Valentine's Day as V-Day until the violence stops" really make? I find it hard to believe that leftists really believe in the perfection of humanity, and yet the women that promote V-Day seem to. Welcome to real life, and real, fallen humanity, and a world where there will always be people who are violent, selfish, murderous, debauched, physically ill, mentally ill. I wonder if the Lutheran concept of vocation does not come into play here. I can feel sorrow for tragic events that take place far away, but my real vocation is helping my neighbor, the person that is here in front of me. Putting a sticker on my car that says "Free Tibet" will not free Tibet. Giving my out-of-work neighbor a bag of groceries will help feed a family.
Or are these women just pushing their agenda, that women are victims constantly in need of help, constantly need Daddy Government looking out for them? It's easy to proclaim you'll push X until Y happens, when you know Y will never happen, if your real goal is just to push X. Either way, their ideas and worldview are miles away from me, and I think they would realize that, and despise me for it. What I wonder about it is the people who think, or pretend to think, that this stuff is mainstream, and I'll explain why in my next post.
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
I am thankful that the weather has been unseasonably warm and sunny. It's good to get some extra sunshine at this time of year.
Wednesday, January 04, 2012
I also need to pace myself better with regards to sewing. I often look at the project as a whole and get overwhelmed, instead of breaking up into tasks. Maybe one day to find the fabric (because a lot of it is still in boxes.) One day to trace the pattern and cut it out (if it's a big project.) Then get the pieces cut out. Then the sewing. One of the hot ideas in accomplishing goals (at least looking at the Android apps) is simply taking, say, 25 minutes to work on something. That way, you've made progress, but the task doesn't bog you down.
I'll admit it's difficult not to be impatient to get a project done. Especially when there's a deadline you've created for yourself. For example, I really wanted to get the living room cleaned up more before the Musician's birthday party, and before Christmas. We have no attic and no basement in our current abode, so there are lots of boxes with no place to go. However, there was enough room for the Musician's friends to enjoy her party, and enough room for the Christmas tree to go up, and for the family to sit around it. No use beating myself up over it not being better.
Monday, January 02, 2012
It was only late last year that I actually started to realize, however, how much stability can mean. It's such a nice feeling to unpack, to really settle in, not to have so many of one's possessions packed away in boxes. You can actually use everything you have, not have most of it stored away. It's nice to be able to take a nice long break from living out of boxes, and just concentrate on living for a while.