Monday, August 27, 2012

On the Domestic End

After four and a half years of knitting, I think I'm ready to try to learn how to knit on circular needles. I got my pattern from Ravelry; you can find it here. I wanted to pick something small and simple for my first project. So far, I'm getting better and better at using Judy's Magic Cast On, as I've been casting on over and over and over due to the unraveling I need to do everytime I mess up and have to start over. I just keep reminding myself that it took me a while to learn how to knit, so I am mostly sure that I will be able to figure this out. Mostly. It's a very gloomy day in the Hundred Acre Wood Northeast Ohio, so it's a good day to curl up and knit.

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

Wait, what?

This is already all over the internets, but as a resident of O-H-I-O, I have to pass this picture on. Just click over to Ace's place to see that our president thinks Ohio is spelled O-I-H-A. And deodorant is optional.

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

The Least of These

The more I think about the whole abortion issue, the more I disagree that it is ever a good idea. Christians have tried to be all compassionate and understanding about women who have had an abortion for at least the devasting reason of rape and incest. What has happened with this compassion and understanding, however, is a culture that considers a human life something that can be thrown away for any reason, at virtually any time before a viable infant arrives in the world. Even after a viable infant is born,if the mom panics and abandons the child by himself somewhere, we are supposed to feel more pity for the young adult forced to make such a horrible choice, than for the baby who may or may not pay for it with his life.

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

I Can't Tell You How Sick This Makes Me

One of my guilty secrets is reading online forums, even ones where I don't have a direct connection to the forum topic, such as kitchen remodelling. I like reading peoples' stories, good and bad, and seeing pictures of what kind of remodels and crafts and so forth people do. And depending on the forum, mostly people are relatively polite and remain on topic.

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

Dear Andrea Mitchell

I've done a lot of thinking about this, and you know what? I don't even know why you would presume that you could speak for me as a suburban mom, or even as a woman. I'm everything that you hate. I'm very white, and I'm not ashamed of the color of my skin. I'm not strictly evangelical, but you wouldn't know the differences in Christian doctrine if someone made a coloring book about it for you. I'm a stay-at-home mom. I've homeschooled my children. I've never had an abortion. I want a return to our Constitution and the founding principles of this country. It doesn't matter if you are who you are, a woman who married a wealthy old man and wouldn't be caught dead living the life of any of the suburban moms that I know, or if you were a dirt poor woman living in a ghetto. YOU DON'T SPEAK FOR ME.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

I'm So Happy!

Both because of the thought of Paul Ryan becoming Vice President of the United States, and because of the Hey Girl, It's Paul Ryan pics being back!

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Thinking Straight

About the concentration thing. I've been having a seriously hard time lately finishing sentences (for those who know me well, it's always been a problem; it's just gotten worse.) I find it hard to write things like blog posts when there is other noise from a television show or video game going in the room. I can't always think of a word that I want to use to say something. There may be health issues at play here, but I'm hoping that things will also improve when the girls go back to school. I enjoy having them at home; I enjoy spending time with them, but even with limited television viewing and video game playing, there is still a lot more noise when they are here. I'm starting to miss having my weekdays at home all to myself. Fortunately, school starts soon. We'll see how things go after that.

Sunday, August 05, 2012


On Friday, the Musician's high school had the privilege of hosting a Drum Corps International competition. For all the band students at my daughter's high school, it was a great opportunity to see these Corps, as Drum Corps International features the very best brass and percussion corps in the country. The Corps practice perhaps twelve hours a day in the heat of the summer, and when they are not performing or practicing, they are on a tour bus or sleeping on a gym floor. The bands also feature a color guard, dancers who moved flags or twirled batons, sabres, ribbons or wooden rifles, who work very hard as well. There was so much activity going on on the whole football field, that you couldn't take everything in at once. It was also fun to watch the judges, who literally get right into the competition. There were eight different judges, each rating one portion of the presentation. Judges follow the band around the field, talking into a recorder to preserve their observations in real time. One judge who particularly stood out was tall and stocky, and was the one who wove the most in and out among the musicians, gesticulating wildly with one arm. It must be very hard to face forward and maintain your composure while a judge is ducking under your tuba!

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

Eat Mor Chikin

As you can probably guess, I went to my local Chick-Fil-A today and picked up some yummy food. I passed by about half an hour earlier, and the line of cars was spilling out into the street. By the time I got back, there were no cars in the street, but there was still a line of cars completely around the building before even getting into the drive-thru line. And there was a long line of people around the building, who were smiling, happy and enjoying hanging out.
It was nice knowing that we who value First Amendment speech are not alone. As I pointed out to my daughter on the car ride home, it is not just Christians who need to worry about losing their freedom of speech. In this case, it was.

I'm sorry I can't write anymore right now. I'm finding it really hard to concentrate lately. More about that later.