Can We Talk?, Monday Stuff

Monday Muse

Here are some interesting articles I’ve found over the past week.


Hyper parents and coddled kids

We’re all a little hyper sometimes, aren’t we? It depends on the situation. My mother thinks I’m crazy that I provide homework help when my kids need it. She just doesn’t get it.

There is a fine line, isn’t there? What matters is the big picture overall. OVERALL, are you the type of parent who lets their kid do it for themselves? Do you give your kid age-appropriate responsibilities? Who’s in charge? You? Or your kid?

I’d like to see the rest of this documentary. For me, I scoff at helicopter parents. Let them be kids! I scream. And yet … looking back at parenting my boys and seeing them today, indecisive and sometimes afraid to make their own decisions, I wonder – was I a helicopter parent? If I were to be perfectly honest? I’d have to say, yes. And I’d have to say, I regret being so overly protective then, and now. It’s something I struggle with constantly.


Pa. Man Dies After 10 Calls to 911

Everyone relies on 911 in an emergency. However, in Pittsburgh recently, a man called 911 10 times over the course of a weekend, complaining of severe abdominal pain, without getting an ambulance. He died without receiving help.

Really. There’s nothing more to say about this one. Tragic.


Lone Republican Senator blocking a million-plus Americans from receiving unemployment benefits

Since cutting health and unemployment benefits isn’t the most popular thing to do in a job-starved recession, the Senate had reached near unanimity on extending these programs. But near-unanimous isn’t enough when senators are looking to stretch out the lifespan of benefits about to lapse-they need to reach unanimous consent. And that requirement has delivered a great deal of power into Bunning’s hands– power that has allowed him to block the extension until the Senate find $10.3 billion in spending cuts elsewhere to fund the safety-net spending.

I find it baffling that everyone is down on Bunning for daring to say no to yet MORE spending.

I, for one, applaud this senator for standing up and saying ENOUGH SPENDING!! It’s time to make some hard choices. We have got to get this spending under control, period. We are printing money so we can spend it. A healthy economic environment doesn’t work that way.

The last I heard, the unemployment benefits were extended and that they cut some other program in order to pay for it. Again, not an easy decision to make, but I think we’ve reached the point where we must start trimming the fat from our country’s budget. We need to stop raising taxes and take a good, hard look at our existing programs to see if we can cut back, and/or eliminate these programs all together.

Throwing more money at a problem simply doesn’t work. Hasn’t that been proven in the past year?


Powerful unions, big spending put Democratic states in deepest fiscal holes.

The five states in the worst financial condition–Illinois, New York, Connecticut, California and New Jersey–are all among the bluest of blue states.

Why do Democratic states appear to be struggling more than Republican ones? It comes down to stronger unions and a larger appetite for public programs, according to Kent Redfield, professor emeritus of political studies and public affairs at the University of Illinois’ Center for State Policy and Leadership.

If states that have adopted Democratic programs/ideals are going bankrupt, what makes us think that these same policies won’t bankrupt America as a country?

I think this article speaks volumes for Obama’s “hope and change.”


Jenny McCarthy’s Son May Not Have Had Autism After All

After years of speaking publicly about her belief that MMR shots (immunization for measles, mumps, and rubella) caused her son to suffer from autism, Jenny McCarthy now faces the reality that her 7-year-old son Evan — who no longer shows any signs of autism — may likely have lived with completely different illness.

I’ve seen A LOT of blog topics about this article – most of them are not very flattering to Ms. McCarthy.

I think ya’ll know how I feel about this whole topic, what do YOU think?


Obama’s Malignant Narcissism

Sure, we’ve had lots of evidence of his oddities over the last two years — Obama giving the finger to Hillary during the campaign; Obama thrilling to the sound of his own voice echoing at the Berlin Victory Monument, using Karl Marx’s own words in Marx’s old haunting grounds; Obama speaking to the whole Muslim world from Al Azhar Mosque in Cairo; Obama rushing to Copenhagen to rescue a scientifically phony climate treaty; Obama suddenly looking enraged last week when Rep. Paul Ryan demonstrated with impeccable logic that ObamaCare just doesn’t add up. It’s simple arithmetic. That C-SPAN shot of Obama’s sudden expression of rage when he couldn’t answer.

Here’s a partial checklist. You decide.

Given the sheer number of public appearances and speeches our president has given over this past year, and that it’s nearly twice that of Bush and Clinton in their first year in office, and the fact that he uses “I” so much in his speeches, I think this article is pretty valid.

I think our president is incredibly narcissistic. It’s either that, or he’s trying to appear more confident that he really is to help disguise the fact that he really doesn’t know what he’s doing.

Either way, the man seems to like the sound of his voice.


You can’t take God out of American history

The teacher, by the name of Bradley Johnson, got into trouble with the district, which said “it had to come down on Johnson because the banners advocated a Judeo-Christian point of view that was not in sync with the nonreligious mission of public schools.”

Johnson went to court on the grounds that his first amendment rights were violated and he also reasoned that other teachers posted religious and non-religious material without being penalized.

The court ruled in the math teacher’s favor:

A federal judge ruled that Poway school officials violated the constitutional rights of a math teacher when they ordered him to take down classroom banners that referred to God.

Now, that the First Amendment decision is out of the way, it should be noted that American history was also endangered.


The Big Problem with Health Care Is Cost, Not Access

Since 85% of the population is insured, the primary concern for most of the currently insured is cost control, not expansion of access. The great majority of the population do not believe that the various reform bills are “paid for” (with Medicare cuts, tax increases, and new fees), regardless of what the OMB says and what the bills’ advocates claim.

The so-called “doctors fix” on Medicare physician payment rates will cost $250 billion over ten years, and double that in the following decade. This cost was excluded from the bill, to allow Democrats to claim the bill cut the overall deficit in the first ten years. Many are properly skeptical that a Congress which loves to spend will in fact allow half a trillion to be cut from Medicare in the next ten years, particularly since some of the savings are expected to come from the “waste, fraud, and abuse” category.


The Pathetic God of Environmentalism

Writing, or trying to write, about God is usually a bad idea. Either there is a God or there is not. If there is no God, then there is nothing to write about. (Sorry, atheists — but if you are right and God does not exist, then why bother spending so much time and energy on…nothing?)

If there is a God…let’s start with a picture followed by a brief explanation:


Is Your Water Making You Stupid and Sick?

The fluoride in your water is actually toxic waste left over after the manufacture of aluminum and chemical fertilizers. – Dr. John Yiamouyiannis, Fluoride, The Aging Factor

Before the 1950’s fluoride was used primarily as a rat and insect poison. Hitler used fluoride to dumb-down prisoners and make them submissive to authority. Fluorine was the critical element that made the atomic bomb possible. After the war big industrial plants faced increased lawsuits stemming from death and injuries caused from fluoride contamination of nearby communities. Faced with lawsuits and hefty disposal costs of this environmentally hazardous waste product, a scheme was devised to add fluoride to the water supply, a plan easily sold to an as-usual gullible American public by spin doctors like Edward Bernays.

The facts against fluoride are overwhelming which is why you will not find one government proponent willing to debate the issue publicly.

Injecting fluoride into the water supply is mass medication of the population and this reason alone makes it unlawful and immoral.

This one sounds too much like a conspiracy theory to me. However, it makes you wonder.

My mom thinks I’m a water snob (we drink distilled, or filtered water, so I guess she’s right, I am a water snob). And one of the things she pointed out to me that I was missing by not drinking tap water, was the fluoride that’s in tap water.

I mean, I grew up drinking water with fluoride, I’ve always thought it was a good thing to have fluoride in your water. But now, I wonder – just what ARE we drinking?

What do you think?

Monday Stuff

Monday Mentions

Kevin and I watched “Word Wars“. It’s a documentary about the world’s best Scrabble players.

Warning: If you’re not feeling too good about yourself, then don’t watch this because these dudes? Are freaking smart!! It’s really quite amazing.

And impressive.

But mainly intimidating. I only thought I was halfway decent at the game – um, no, I’m like a new-born babe compared to these dudes.

But if you’re a word nerd and you like this sort of stuff, it’s a really interesting watch. (If foul language offends you, then you might not want to watch it).


I thought this was an interesting article:

When the Best Rx Is No Rx
In Treating Ear Infections, a Push to Avoid Antibiotics; Persuading Parents to Wait and Watch

Apparently, more and more doctors are trying to persuade parents with children who have ear infections to try the “wait and see” method before resorting to antibiotics. The doctors say that a lot of times, the body will heal itself and the ear infection will heal on it’s own.

A growing number of studies have shown that most children with ear infections recover well without antibiotics, with little risk of more serious complications. Research in the journal BMJ in June even suggested that children who got antibiotics might be more likely to have recurrent infections.

If, after a few days, the child is not feeling better, the parent can call the doctor’s office and they will prescribe an antibiotic over the phone.

My first reaction, when reading this, was WOOT! ‘BOUT TIME! I mean, our bodies are pretty amazing machines – they’re equipped to fight off things like this.

Allan S. Lieberthal, a pediatrician at Kaiser Permanente in Los Angeles who is chairman of the current guidelines-writing effort, tells parents that the chance of a child getting better within a few days without an antibiotic is about 80%, while with the drug it is around 90%.

However, thinking back to the time period when MY boys were little and suffering from an ear infection? I’m not sure I would have gone for this option. It’s hard enough to watch your child suffer from something, it would be DOUBLY hard to allow them to suffer.

Some parents say that once a bacterial infection has been diagnosed, they’re not comfortable leaving it untreated. Some also push for the quickest possible recovery so their children can return to school or day care. In a survey of primary-care doctors published in 2007, 65% said parents’ demand for antibiotics was the most important barrier to holding off on prescriptions.

So, are parents relying on drugs to heal their children so they can hurry up and resume life? Probably. Who has time for a sick kid?

Anyway, I found this article interesting because in a day and age where there is a pill for everything, and people have sort of expected to be prescribed a pill every time they go to the doctor (whether it’s truly justified or not), I thought this approach was rather “radical.”

I wonder if parents will go for it?

Would you?


Here’s another interesting article I stumbled upon this past week:

Eliminate senior year of high school? Utah lawmaker says the move would save money

Would students miss much if the state eliminated grade 12 to save money?

State Sen. Chris Butters, a Republican representing an area just west of Salt Lake City, is getting some national attention for a plan that would provide incentives for students to get the necessary graduation requirements completed by the end of their junior year.

“There are some [students] that really have a great 12th grade, but you talk to 100 kids and their parents, and I believe the majority of them will say, ‘Well, my kid didn’t do much in the 12th grade,’” Buttars told Schencker. “Everybody wants to talk about change … But to tell you the truth, they’re scared to death of it.”

About half the state’s high school seniors would have to leave early for the state to save the $60 million.

Wow. I’m honestly not sure how I feel about this – even a week later. My very first reaction was like, “Are you kidding me?! No way!”

But then I thought, “Well. The only required course Dude has to take his senior year is an English class – everything is else is cheese.”

Granted, important and interesting cheese, but cheese, none the less.

I can see why Utah would consider eliminating 12th grade. And it would save them a lot of money.

But at the same time, are kids mature enough to hit the real world running at 17? I’m pretty sure Dude’s not ready, but then again, if he had been mentally prepared for it to happen, he probably would be.

I just don’t know how I feel about this proposal.

What say you? Were you ready to graduate when you were 17?


Yet another article …

The $555,000 Student-Loan Burden

Holy. Freaking. Bank. Balance. Batman.

Can you imagine, I mean, really imagine, owing half a million dollars JUST in student loans?!?

I honestly can’t fathom it. Let’s be real, will this woman EVER get this loan paid off?

Truly?

Granted, she didn’t have to keep deferring her loans, (which is really what got her into trouble), but let’s say she hadn’t …

should it really cost $250,000 to go to med school?!

THAT right there is where our education system fails us, I think: the cost. That’s insane. And it discourages people to go into the field, or to further one’s education – who wants to graduate from school owing that much money? Oh sure, you can get a job paying the big bucks (which is really the reason anyone goes into medicine – the crazy salary. Yes, some go into the business because they truly want to help people, but let’s get real – the money doesn’t hurt), but think how long it would take for a loan that size to get paid off.

Years.

Decades.

If we want more people to pursue an education then we honestly need to do something about the COST of said education.

Don’t you agree?


It is so refreshing to read a POSITIVE story about weight gain and athleticism for a change.

Ice dancer Belbin has put on weight, and she couldn’t be happier

It’s about time and kudos to Belbin.


And speaking of weight …


The Cost of Being Fat : $100,000 Over a Lifetime

The Council on Size & Weight Discrimination cites several studies in the last decade that show the financial affects of weight discrimination in the workplace. Here are some of the more shocking figures:

* Heavier workers earn $1.25 an hour less than their average-weight peers, adding up to a $100,000 difference in a 40-year career.
* Additional weight hurts women even more—slightly overweight women can expect a 6% pay discrepancy, whereas more obese women make 24% less.
* A survey of people 50% over their ideal weight showed that 17% were fired or pressured to resign because of their weight.

A 2009 Weight Bias Study from Yale (PDF) showed that a job applicant or employee’s weight had a considerable effect on employment decisions such as hiring, placement, and coworker evaluations. According the study, “it was demonstrated that overweight job applicants and employees were evaluated more negatively and had more negative employment outcomes compared to non-overweight applicants and employees.” []

Perhaps the most shocking fact of all is that weight discrimination is almost perfectly legal. Only one state (Michigan) features legislation against weight discrimination. There have been individual cases where employers’ policies have been ruled against, but the standards that protect individuals’ rights against age, race, religious, and gender discrimination offer no such shelter to the obese. Obviously, we have to ask . . . should they?

Comments?


And one last thing …

You know what I don’t get? How this administration rallies against the elite & yet they ooze elitism. How ironic.

Seriously. Click over and tell me what you think.

It REALLY makes my blood boil.


I have many more links / articles to share with you, but I think I’ll save them for another time.

I’ve posted these, and so many more, on my Twitter account if you want to keep track.

Monday Stuff

Worth Mentioning …

Here are a few things that caught my attention this past weekend.

(WARNING: These topics are controversial and a bit *ahem* top heavy, but these are the sorts of things I think about – a lot. Thanks for stopping by).

Remember all the hoopla over the Pro-Life commercial that was scheduled to air during the Super Bowl? Have you seen it??

I KNOW! Are you shocked?! Can you believe they would promote family?!? What is wrong with these people.

Pfft.

Isn’t it crazy what people get so bent out of shape over? I thought this commercial was sweet and touching and only reinforced the need for women to make a wise and informed decision about something as precious as a life.

But hold on – I’m pro-choice. And by that I mean pro-choice. I believe women have the right to say what happens to their body. I believe that as soon as that right, or any similar right that affects an individual, is taken away, then we have serious problems.

Can you imagine being a victim of incest or rape and then having someone tell you that you MUST have the baby anyway? That you don’t have a choice. Yes, it was a terrible and bad thing that happened to you but TOUGH. That decision is no longer yours to make.

BUT …. BUT … before you go off and start lecturing me about the importance of life let me just say …

I agree with you. Please understand, I think a woman should retain her right to choose what is done to her body, I just pray that she chooses life over death.

It sickens, and disgusts me, how callous society has become when it comes to children. Both in the womb and out. Abortion should never, ever, EVER be used as a form of birth control and I think too often, it is. I think society, as a whole, does not value life in general and is alarmingly flippant and blasé about it. It’s life. It’s precious. And I believe that if a woman finds herself pregnant, she should CHOOSE to either keep it or give it up for adoption. Abortion should only, and I stress ONLY, be the last resort.

I think too often, pro-choice people are actually pro-abortion. Because if they were truly pro-choice, wouldn’t they be grateful that the women who contemplated abortion chose life instead? I see too many people get bent out of shape when other alternatives are offered to women in that situation and I just don’t understand WHY pro-choice people would have a problem with that. Don’t you find it ironic that to be truly pro-choice other options should be given and yet when they’re given, and taken, people get upset? Why would anyone get upset over a woman’s CHOICE to give birth to the baby and then give it up for adoption? Or CHOOSE to keep the baby and raise it herself? That’s what this commercial is all about. It’s about the choice this woman made to keep her baby, even though she was having a difficult pregnancy and even though the experts were telling her the baby might die.

And yet, people have a problem with it. Why? Because it promotes life? Because it highlights this woman’s decision to have her baby despite the danger? Because it promotes strong family values? Because it was scheduled to air during a time slot reserved for inane, asinine, fluffy commercials about casual Fridays? I truly don’t understand the opposition.

In the meantime, you can read more about the story behind this commercial here. (Please watch it – it’s inspiring and brought tears to my eyes). If you want to comment, go ahead. But I reserve the right to delete anything that is less than respectful or inflammatory in any way.


Speaking of Super Bowl commercials, here’s another one that irked me:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Danica Patrick. *SIGH* I just can’t like her because of these stupid, sexist Go-Daddy commercials.

I mean, here’s a woman, making headway in a predominately male sport, who has the opportunity to be great, to do something substantial, to make history and inspire future generations of women and yet, she succumbs to the ole stand-by of “let’s flash some boob to get attention” stint.

I mean, COME ON, Ms. Patrick, have some freaking pride, why don’t you? I understand the whole sponsor thing, I get that it’s really hard, if not impossible, to get anyone to go out on a limb and fork over millions of dollars for a racing team in this economy, but couldn’t you have put your foot down and said something like “NO! I won’t allow you to market me into yet another lame, sexist attempt to broaden your audience.”

Here’s a thought, what ever happened to showing what a kick-ass driver you are? Instead, we’re once again focused on your looks and the fact that *GASP* you have breasts.

Big whoop.

I’m excited about more women getting into NASCAR, but geez louise, can we have a little respect for our gender, and for the other female drivers in the meantime? Which are just as pretty and probably just as talented as Ms. Patrick, only we don’t know about because the media is so focused on Patrick’s lame attempts to market herself and tease the public with boob shots.

Gah.


Here is an interesting local story I thought I would comment on:

Religious symbol on jewelry puts woman crossways with employer

Vodpod videos no longer available.

In essence, this woman works (worked?) for FedEx and refused to take off her cross necklace citing religious reasons. Only, the company specifically has a policy about anyone wearing any sort of jewelery with their uniform – they can’t even wear any sort of pins. This is a company policy and I’m assuming this woman signed a form stating that she agreed to those terms.

I think it was wise on FedEx’s part to make this policy specific and known because in order to allow one individual to wear a symbol of Christianity, then to be fair, they then would also be forced to allow others to wear their religious symbols and quite honestly? It’s hard enough not to offend anyone in business, let alone when a company is willing to open the door to symbols that will surely offend someone at some point; eliminating all sorts of jewelry and garment paraphernalia nips a potential problem in the bud.

Now granted, I can appreciate this woman’s willingness to stand up for her religion, a religion that I happen to also believe in, but this is a company policy, that she was made aware of multiple times and is a condition of her working there. Not to sound cold-hearted, but if she wants to wear her cross, she will need to look for a job that will allow her the luxury of wearing said jewelry.

However, given these last few sentences in the story:

“Her administrative leave is attributed to being out of uniform for multiple months. There are personal insignia limitations in the dress code but religious exceptions are given when requested and validated.”

Graves says she didn’t know and wasn’t told she could apply for a religious exemption. She says she would have done so if given the opportunity.

It sounds to me like the company will give in to her “religious exemption.” Which isn’t right, though again, I can appreciate this woman’s refusal to conform and compromise her beliefs, because if the company gives in to her, then they have to give in to the next person and the next and where exactly do they draw the line?

Why even have a policy to begin with if they’re going to eventually waffle and cite “religious exemption” for the people who refuse to follow company rules?


Did you hear?! Sarah Palin wrote on her hand!! Oh my gosh!! The gall of the woman! Has she never heard of a teleprompter??

And can you believe this was actually news? And the left was trying to somehow spin this into something about cheating?!

Unbelievable. Yes, the woman wrote down some key points she wanted to cover in the speech she gave at the annual Tea Party convention in Nashville over the weekend. And I daresay she wrote those key points down because she didn’t have teleprompters to guide her when she spoke – from her heart.

Unlike another prominent public SERVANT in the White House.

Let’s not forget that our Commander in Chief can’t even address children without his trusty teleprompter, people.

I mean seriously. How pathetic.

THAT pretty much trumps any notes that Palin scribbled on her hand, don’t you think?


And lastly, because this post is steeped in negativity, let’s end on a positive, and funny, note.

Betty White’s appearance in this Snickers commercial:

She’s a class act, isn’t she? 🙂

Monday Stuff

Worth Mentioning …

Monday Mentions is an easy way to share any and all of the fun things you’ve discovered recently, online or otherwise. For more information read this post by the mastermind behind this whole thing, Jen @ Daily Mish Mash. Here’s what I’ve discovered this week…


1. So the Amazon book store thing is going well …

I’ve sold eight books so far – not bad for only being “in business” a little over a week.

Though I don’t have any illusions of getting rich off this book store, it IS nice to be able to sell my books to people who actually want them. This whole book store thing is still an experiment, but if I continue selling books, then I’m definitely going to start getting pro-active about adding more books to my inventory. And if that means hitting yard sales, and of COURSE the bi-annual library book sales, then I will do it.

It’s all for a good cause, after all. 🙂


2. I just had the weirdest thing happen.

Well, weird and creepy.

Dude’s ’99 Cavalier is parked in our backyard. We want to build a garage but right now, we don’t have the funds to build that garage. So, there she sits all by her lonesome.

And here I sit, writing to you all, waiting to go pick up the boys from school, when the doorbell rings.

I ignore it. I always ignore the doorbell, one, because if you didn’t call first? All bets are off as far as me stopping what I’m doing and talking to you. And two, I’m by myself and HELLO creepy person confronting a woman, by herself, at home.

I’m pretty dense, but even I know that can be a stupid move.

After some time passed, I went to the door, expecting to see a delivery. Because most of the time, that’s who is ringing our doorbell – the UPS/FedEx guy.

I open the door – no package. But there is a sticky note stuck to my front door. The guy wrote something about if we wanted to sell the Cavalier, regardless of whether it was working or not, to give him a call.

Um … no. That’s our son’s car and it’s not going anywhere. But I can understand why he might have thought we wanted to sell it – it’s parked in our backyard and DOES look like we’re trying to sell it.

But here’s the really creepy part. I get up from my desk and I see the back door ALSO has a sticky note on it. Same message, same guy. But um … the back door. Which means he had to walk all the way around our house and stick it there. Front door. Okay. Back door? Dude, you’re trespassing. And the part that irritates/embarrasses me? He HAD to have seen me sitting at my desk because I’m right there, in plain sight.

He must have thought I was so rude.

Well, I AM rude. But still … awkward!


3. I was updating school websites this morning … because that’s my day job, and I was trying to locate a graphic for a pair of jeans (don’t ask), when I stumbled onto this picture.

I’d post it here, but honestly? It offends me so much that I can’t bring myself to actually do it.

And here I go, back on my soapbox again …

Look. Ladies. I get pretty sick and tired of listening to ya’ll bitch and moan about how men need to stop oogling and staring and treating you like a sex object when you CLEARLY want that to happen.

Why would I say that? Why would anyone wear something like this and think it WON’T happen??

If you want to be taken seriously, if you want men to respect you and stop looking at you like a sex object, then for the love of God, don’t wear slutty clothes like this.

Sheesh. Am I the only one who understands this concept? Because I’m beginning to think so!


4. My laptop crashed, which meant my iTunes library went *POOF*, and disappeared. I don’t know about you? But AARGGH!! This is like twice this has happened to me. The first time, I spent an entire day putting all of my CD’s back into my iTunes library AND dummy me, I didn’t keep a backup of the songs I purchased through Apple, so in essence, I lost those songs. (I could have contacted Apple about that, and I’m sure they would have allowed me to get copies of those songs, but Ugh. There were only a few and quiet honestly? I didn’t feel like jumping through hoops, which you sometimes have to do when you deal with big, controlling corporations like that).

But this time, THIS TIME, I got smart. I have nearly 1,100 songs on my iPod and OMG, I did not relish the thought of having to put all of those songs back on, so I started doing a little research.

If you have anything BUT an iPod Touch or Phone, you can plug your iPod into your computer and it will recognize it as a hard drive. You can then manually copy folders onto your computer, and then import them back into iTunes and SNAP, your songs are back into your iTunes. But this is only if you’re comfortable with file management. And if you’re not, or, like me, you have an iTouch or an iPhone, you can use programs like Copy Trans. (If you want to know more about the file management option, this is a good place to start reading about it).

Copy Trans will take the songs off your iPod, put them on your computer, and then turn around and import them into your iTunes with one click of a button. They offer a free download, so you can try it, but it’s only good up to 100 songs. If you want to import any more than that, you have to pay $20 for a full license.

So, I thought I’d give them a shot. I mean, time is money and it’s worth it to me not to have to blow a whole day just to put my music back on … so, I tried it.

I downloaded the program, installed it, plugged in my iPod and it recognized my Touch immediately. All I had to do was click one button and it did it’s job.

Seamless and incredibly easy. The whole process took about 25 minutes. Which beats the HOURS I would have spent doing the same thing manually.

You can also customize what you want transferred and there are various other functions available, but I since that’s all I wanted from the program, that’s all it gave me.

I recommend using the program. You won’t find an option to transfer your music FROM your iPod TO your computer from Apple, you’ll have to use a third party. And if you’re needing something like that done, I recommend Copy Trans.

(Remember. I don’t do sponsored posts – I was not compensated to talk about Copy Trans in any way).


5. Snuggies for Geeks.

Seriously. Click on the link. You will laugh. Then come back here and tell me which one you liked the most.


6. If you dropped it on the floor, should you eat it?

Here’s a flow chart to help you decide.


7. This photo made me laugh.

We’re totally doing this the next time we’re on a beach.

In about five years. 😀

Monday Stuff

And My Point Is …

thought-bubble1 … there really isn’t a point. This is just me, trying to make sense of my jumbled thoughts. Bear with me …

***1***

I had to pick up my neighbor’s trash today.

Okay fine. I didn’t have to pick it up but dang it! It’s been there for months! And no one is picking it up! And our neighborhood is beautiful and nice aside from my trashy neighbors and I can’t stand the thought of it going downhill because of ONE lazy-ass family.

I don’t know why I should be surprised. They never pick up their trash – they allow their lawn mowing guy to do it. And since it’s been too cold for lawn mowing, it just sits there – and mocks me.

Until today.

I simply couldn’t stand it anymore. I snapped on a pair of latex gloves, grabbed a trash bag and marched my butt over there and spent a good fifteen minutes picking up trash that had been sitting there for so long, it was decomposing. Their papers? Were so rotted out that I had to dig into the soil to get them out.

Think paper mache bad.

I then dumped the trash bag full of THEIR trash into THEIR trash bin that had JUST been emptied. (Today was trash day).

So A. I hope they see that lone, strange trash bag in their trash bin and B. I hope they put two-and-two together and realize that someone picked up their trash and C. I hope they are humiliated and embarrassed.

Because I’m mean and pissed off. Okay?

I mean come ON. If you’re going to live in a house, then accept the fact that you’re going to have to take care of that house. And these people? Are physically capable of picking it up. Why do I know this? Because if they can lift their legs to step over the damn stuff, then they sure as heck can bend over and pick it up! If you’re not going willing to take care of your house? Then do your neighbors a favor and don’t buy one!

(By the way, this is twice that I’ve gone over there and picked up a yard full of trash. And by trash I mean crushed cigarette packets, crushed soda cans, discarded, unread paper, candy wrappers, fast food wrappers and toys [they have two young boys] that the dog chewed up and mutilated.)

I told the boys I went over there and picked up their trash today and Jazz scolded me.

“Mom. Why did you do that? They’re never going to pick up that trash because they know you’re going to eventually go over there and pick it up for them! Where’s their motivation to do it?”

In which I responded:

“Precisely. They don’t have any motivation because they’re lazy and I would rather pick it up and have it clean than to let it accumulate and trash up our neighborhood.”

Though I understood my son’s point, and indeed, he has a valid point – if you do someone else’s work, you’re really not doing them any favors – and I appreciated him speaking up and saying that point, it really doesn’t matter. The bottom line? Our neighbors, though I’m sure are good people, are lazy. And they’re unwillingness to pull their own weight ultimately affects me and the rest of the neighborhood. Everyone else on the block makes an effort to keep their yards and houses nice – save for them. If it means I have to trudge over there and pick up their nasty trash so our neighborhood looks nice?

Well, so be it.

I have NO patience for lazy people – none. No one likes to work and pick up crap but guess what? That’s life, get over it. And what kind of example are they setting for their sons?

Precisely.

***2***

I’m probably going to get some heat for this, but something about the Haiti earthquake disaster bothers me …

Well, two things bother me about it, actually.

1. I thought Chris Brogan’s article “How NOT to Help Haiti” was an interesting read.

In essence, he’s saying, that especially in times of trouble, we should tweet with a purpose. Forego the sympathy tweets and tweet actions – places that people can go and actually help the situation. I mean, it’s great to tweet sympathy and prayers, but how does that physically help the Haitians?

This really applies to any sort of cry for help or world-wide disaster. Twitter is a powerful tool – IF we know how to use it correctly and efficiently.

There were so many tweets (which included erroneous information or scumbags looking to make a little money off a global disaster), that it was a bit hard to know what to do and what to believe.

2. I was disturbed to see so many popular bloggers trying to help by asking for comments on their blogs in exchange for giving money to Haiti relief efforts. I mean, why not just give the money up front? Why ask for the comments? Why redirect people to a blog?

I KNOW their hearts were in the right place – I know this. But to use a disaster, one that tugs at so many heart strings, in order to drive traffic to blogs that make money on ads and perhaps increase exposure seemed ….. cheap and self-serving, I think.

Perhaps I don’t know the whole story. Maybe they worked out a deal with a company who sponsored something like this, but again, I have to ask, why not just give the money straight away instead of asking people to visit and comment? Why the middle man, or blog, as the case may be?

Again. I don’t mean to cause anything by bringing this up. It just seemed a little … odd to me. That’s all.

***3***

I also ran across another article that was right up my alley. You all know that I don’t have a lot of patience for people who give reasons for not being happy. We all have the power to be happy, it’s just a question of finding the strength to make it happen. And often times, that requires change, sometimes drastic change. But if we truly want to be happy, sometimes, we have to cut the strings to our old life.

So when I read “Eight Harsh Truths That Will Improve Your Life,” I just had to pass it on to you.

Here are the highlights:

  • 1. Friends Come and Go

    There are an abundance of amazing people out there for you to meet and build relationships with. If you don’t have many friends, don’t stress, there are literally billions of friendship possibilities

    I’d like to take it a step further – be careful of poisonous friendships. If being around that person causes you nothing but sadness, anger, or grief, then for pete’s sake, nip that friendship in the bud and move on.

  • 2. You Won’t Always Get What You Want

    Don’t look for happiness in material possessions and if things don’t go your way, learn to accept them. Life’s too short to stay miserable.

    Absolutely. Learn to LET GO. Sometimes, you simply have to.

  • 3. Many People Will Love You, but Many Will Not

    Not everyone is always going to like you, and that’s fine. If people want to spend time talking about you then that is their problem. You are perfect as you are. You shouldn’t need everyone to like you to have some form of self-esteem.

    This goes doubly for romantic interests. Be patient. Choose wisely. And be yourself. If he/she doesn’t accept you for yourself, then that person is not worth your time. There’s no hurry to find that one love in your life. And if you don’t find him/her, then use that time to enrich your life, or the lives around you.

  • 4. Nobody Can Transform Your Life Like You Can

    Do things for yourself and learn to stand on your own two feet. People you rely on won’t be around forever, and you don’t want to have to use others as a crutch to get anywhere in life.

    AMEN! I couldn’t agree more with this one.

  • 5. You Are Going to Fail

    You can learn a lot from others, but it is your own failures that are going to teach you the most valuable lessons in life. Learn from your failures, embrace them, and use them to drive you on to success.

    I agree with this one, too. However, to take it a step further, don’t DWELL on your failures. Just accept that failure is a natural step to success and when you reach that successful level – don’t feel guilty about it – don’t apologize for it – celebrate!

  • 6. Rain Will Sometimes Cancel Play

    Don’t stress about the things that you can’t control. Learn to live with things that happen. You can’t change the past, but you can change how you react to things.

    Again – AMEN!

  • 7. There May Be No Tomorrow

    Make the most of each day. Make sure the people you care about actually know it, don’t worry about little matters, just make sure you spend time doing the things you love.

    I need to work on this one. Though not in the way it’s described above. I need to stop wasting so much time! I need to make the most of my time and get as much done as I can while I’m alive – I assume that tomorrow will always come and there will come a time that it won’t.

  • 8. Someone Else Will Always Have More

    Just because someone has ‘more’, that doesn’t mean they are happy. Read the biography of any celebrity and they will tell you they enjoy their process of earning money, rather than what money can do to make them happy. In other words, focus on what you love, not what the thing you love can get you.

    I think everyone – EVERYONE – needs to hang this mantra on their fridge. There is WAAAAY too much envy in the world. Seriously. I think people that don’t have forget that the people who do have? Worked their butts off to get there. In other words, they paid their dues. And if someone wants something badly enough? That person must also pay his/her dues.

Anyway, I thought this article was an excellent tool to perhaps help those out there that are stuck in misery.

That’s not a very fun place to be stuck, huh.

***4***

We’re going to New York in July.

We’re actually going to New York two days before we’re scheduled to catch the boat for our next cruise.

To Canada.

We bought a guide to New York and OMG, I can’t wait to go. I’ll share details of what I’ve found soon. And if anyone has any tips on what to do in New York for cheap (preferably FREE!), I’d love to hear your thoughts.

The cruise is only five days long and the price was insanely reasonable for four people AND an extra cabin for the boys. We had enough points built up on our American Airline account that our flight is paid for so …. why not. Since it’s so expensive to fly to New York otherwise, we thought we’d go this route and really get the most out of our points.

The next time we have enough points to cash in for “free” airline tickets? Kevin and I are going to Hawaii – for our 25th wedding anniversary.

Which is only five short years away.

***5***

Have you guys seen this?

I’m thinking this will be right up there with “Super-Size Me.” In fact, I think we should make shows like this a reality-TV series to constantly remind people of what they’re eating and how much they’re eating.

***6***

What do you think about Wal-Mart’s new commercial?

Different, right?

Monday Stuff

Monday Mingle: Home is Where the Heart Is

This week’s questions:

1. When going out to breakfast at a restaurant, what do you typically order?

2. What style/type of house is your favorite? What room or accessory must your dream house have?

3. How many houses have you lived in?

Next week’s questions:

Next week’s questions (submitted by Colette from Jamerican Spice – thank you!):
1. Would you accept an invitation to do a survivor show? What would you hate most about being on the show?
2. When/how did you learn to ride a bicycle?
3. What do you want to have accomplished (personally) in your lifetime?

Monday Stuff

Monday Mingle: About Blogging Conferences …

This week’s questions:

1. What is the neatest/coolest car you have ever owned?

2. Have you ever been to San Francisco? New York? Tell us!

3. Along those lines – are you going to BlogHer? Did you go last year? What was it like?

Next week’s questions (Questions 2 and 3 submitted by Jendi from Simple Vlogging Tips – thanks Jendi!):

1. When going out to breakfast at a restaurant, what do you typically order?

2. What style/type of house is your favorite? What room or accessory must your dream house have?

3. How many houses have you lived in?

Monday Stuff

Monday Mingle: Holiday Wrap Up

This week’s questions:

1. What special gifts did you receive on Christmas? Tell us!

2. How did you ring in the new year?

3. On an entirely different note – what is/was your favorite disco song? Feel free to be creative…sing, dance, etc.

Next week’s questions:

1. What is the neatest/coolest car you have ever owned?

2. Have you ever been to San Francisco? New York? Tell us!

3. Along those lines – are you going to BlogHer? Did you go last year? What was it like?

Monday Stuff

Have I Mentioned …

Monday Mentions is an easy way to share any and all of the fun things you’ve discovered recently, online or otherwise. For more information read this post by the mastermind behind this whole thing, Jen @ Daily Mish Mash. Here’s what I’ve discovered this week…


1. This news story was in our local newspaper a few days back.

Five Injured When Motorist Slows for Dog

A motorist who tried to avoid hitting a dog got back-ended on eastbound Interstate 44 near the Missouri 744 interchange Sunday, resulting in injuries to five people in the two cars, according to the Missouri Highway Patrol.

Two things bother me about this story:

A. This poor woman, the driver who slowed for the dog, was damned if she did and damned if she didn’t. On the one hand, she can’t be expected to run the dog down, that would be inhumane, so of course, she needs to try and avoid hitting the dog.

BUT – should she do that at the risk of injuring/killing herself and/or injuring/killing the other people on the highway? What is worth more, the life of a dog, or the life of a human? Thought provoking scenario, don’t you think?

And

B. The person who rear-ended her got a citation for following her too closely. Now granted, I don’t know just HOW close this guy was to her when he hit her, but let’s think about this rationally – who, in their right mind, expects someone to slow down on the highway, when it’s clear that there hasn’t been an accident ahead and there are no construction areas – the car just stops for no apparent reason. I’m not sure I think the guy SHOULD have gotten a ticket for rear-ending her, quite frankly. Though I understand WHY the police officer did and probably had to because of insurance claims.

But see? The whole thing was a damned if I do and a damned if I don’t sort of problem.


2. This is probably one of the coolest things I’ve seen high schools do in quite some time.

Original story:

It began in November when Shorecrest High School produced a music video to Outkast’s “Hey Ya!”

The students banded together, performing for four minutes as the camera operator walked the halls of the school while students lip synced to the song. The video was shot with one take, meaning that there were no video cuts. It was all-or-nothing and it became a YouTube hit.

Their longtime competitors in football and band, Shorewood High School, weren’t going to be one-upped. Shorewood has just released their competing video to Hall and Oates’ “You Make My Dreams Come True.” It was also shot in one take, but with a twist They shot it in reverse. The students had to learn how to lip sync the song backward.

Here is what the original school did:

And then this is what the rival school shot in response:

Now tell me you don’t wish your kids went to these schools. 😀 I’m going to send this to the principal of the boys’ schools. Who knows what’ll happen next.


3. Do you think we should disable teens cell phones when they are driving?

I don’t know, I’m all for it. In fact, let’s take it one step further, let’s disable ALL cell phones so that people can’t use them while driving, period.


4. This not a legal loophole, it’s a serious moral defect.


5. Top 10 Reasons to Kill the Senate Bill

I mean seriously, does it bother anyone that our government officials have gotten SO desperate to pass this monster health care bill that they have resorted to voting at 1:00 in the morning and bribing officials so they will vote their way? I mean, is that even legal?!?

What the HELL are these people thinking?! And why are we allowing them to do this?!

The only thing historic about this bill is the corruption behind it to get it passed.


6. Did you hear that dogs are now a big contributor to Global Warming? Oh, excuse me, I mean Climate Change.

Seriously. Are we HIGH?!


7. We The People – by Ray Stevens

Oh come on people, lighten up. It’s a parody.


8. This, ladies and gentlemen, is my neighbor. He’s a well-known radio jockey in our area.

And yes, he’s THAT delightful in real life. 😀


9. What in the world?!? “Many U.S. Parents Outsourcing Child Care Overseas


10. And by the way, nearly all of these links/videos I posted are from my Twitter account, so if you dig random, nutty stuff like this, follow me, ‘kay?