Thursday, November 27, 2008
1) Do you have to fail an IQ test to be selected as a Thanksgiving parade commentator? My goodness these people are annoying.
2) Monopoly now comes with a calculator. I guess that's better than the credit card version, but it still pisses me off.
Friday, November 21, 2008
I see all these great pictures, sift through all these amazing recipes, and in the end up feeling like I want to sit in the corner and rock... this whole Celiac Disease really has my number. Everywhere I look I see flour... wheat flour... and I still don't have other flour IQ yet... I don't know how to fix a recipe to work for our situation. And to be honest, the stuff I've found that is GF lacks a certain luster (and trust me bean flour SUCKS!).
So why am I unloading this all here... THANKSGIVING. Daddio agreed for us to attend Thanksgiving at a relative's home, by doing so I have to create a meal for Bobcat that we can bring with us (with enough to share because he told them we would). Normally when you show up somewhere for this sort of thing you bring one dish... I have to prepare an ENTIRE MEAL all the way down to a dessert, because it isn't fair for Bobcat to miss out on anything because of this stupid disease (while also making sure it isn't cross contaminated while we are there). Then there is a chance that we will be traveling over the weekend to another relative's home for a visit... which means another set of meals, but now that have to be travel proof!
I don't mean to whine... but goodness gracious there is only so much a mom can do.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I call BS. To me, it just sounds like immature dudes enjoying every minute of their freedom and wealth and selfishness, and conveniently blaming women for their “confusion”. Mommallama and I met in high school. The high school love was obviously not completely mature. I suppose we were as much "in love" as kids can be. We thought it was something special, and we had enough common sense to maintain certain boundaries and allow ourselves to grow up. We learned a lot about our faith in college and seriously discerned what sort of spouse we ought to be looking for, and we considered religious vocations. By the second or third year, we knew that the ideal partner was the person we were already with, and as soon as I had a degree and a job, we were ready to marry.
So, our "courtship" lasted five years, but I honestly believe that if we hadn’t met until we were 25, it would have taken me all of three months to propose. That’s not to say there wouldn’t have been other women to date and discern. But when a confident young Christian knows what he’s looking for, and knows where to look for it (NOT in a bar), it should be pretty easy to discover pretty quickly whether someone would be a good wife. I mean, really, how difficult can this be? Maybe I'm missing something because I've been married basically all of my "adult" life, but what else do you need to know? Do you have:
-Have fun/sense of humor
-Common ideals for roles as husband and wife, father and mother
-Physical attraction (This does not mean "sexual compatibility". That's a stupid notion. Especially for men - trust me, you're "compatible". You'll like it, and if you remained chaste while single, your wife will always be the best you've ever had.)
It's not rocket science, young ladies. Does he meet all of your criteria, or doesn't he? He's an adult and he's not going to change much, so if there's something that disqualifies him as a spouse, move on. Don't hang around waiting for him to be "ready" for marriage. Putting yourself on the Pill so that you can be a "strong, independent woman" that he can use for physical pleasure will not help the situation. He might eventually get attached enough that your begging and threats will get him to propose, but eventually the novelty will wear off and it'll be a miserable marriage.
And that is all there is to it. Hopefully our boys will take our advice and keep their heads on straight during their young adulthood.
He wants to be good, and he is very very sweet. But he's not so big on delayed gratification or self control. It must be fun to be Snookie.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Big Three CEOs Flew Private Jets to Plead for Public Funds
The CEOs of GM, Ford and Chrysler may have told Congress that they will likely go out of business without a bailout yet that has not stopped them from traveling in style, not even First Class is good enough.
All three CEOs - Rick Wagoner of GM, Alan Mulally of Ford, and Robert Nardelli of Chrysler - exercised their perks Tuesday by flying in corporate jets to DC. Wagoner flew in GM's $36 million luxury aircraft to tell members of Congress that the company is burning through cash, asking for $10-12 billion for GM alone.
"This is a slap in the face of taxpayers," said Tom Schatz, President of Citizens Against Government Waste. "To come to Washington on a corporate jet, and asking for a hand out is outrageous."
Way to lead by example, guys. Next time take a page from the Palin playbook and start putting the jets on eBay. I wonder if they parked next to Al Gore's jet, maybe on his way to the latest global warming conference?
By the way, those planes measure fuel in gallons per minute rather than miles per gallon. One trip to collect a Nobel prize uses enough fuel to drive our SUV for seven years. So stick that in your pipe and smoke it, hybrid weenies.
This year we had a very small crowd, on the kid front we had our three boys and my 6 year old niece... so we were able plan some fun activities that fillded the majority of the time and know that I wouldn't feel overwhelmed in the process!
Bobcat wanted pizza for his birthday meal... so before the party started I pre-made the GF crusts. When the guests arrived they slipped into their custom aprons and got to work building their own pizzas!
(Snookie, Great Grandma, Bobcat)
(Bubba and Niece)Next up was cupcake decorating! Yes my friends, I pawned off all my usual birthday work on to the children... what? They loved it!
The kids got into... and so did the grandmas and great grandma!
The party was a grand success. The pizzas were tasty, the cupcakes were... decorated, and the birthday boy enjoyed himself!
Happy 8th little man!
"...I think that even the most dedicated of adoptive parents would agree that in a perfect world, children would never be harmed or abandoned or neglected by the very people who ought most to protect them."
How could I not agree with that? However, I've struggled with this issue for some time. My mother is twice married and divorced. Either the first marriage (to my knowledge annulled) should not have occurred and my sister and I should not be here today. Or the second marriage (also, to my knowledge, annulled) should not have have occurred and my "half siblings" (I hate that term, but don't know of an alternative) and step-siblings should not be here. Divorce is objectively evil. And yet, we are here.
Our boys' birth parents were never married. They shouldn't be here. And they have a little sister who remains with her birth father, to the best of our knowledge. She should not be here. (Or maybe she should be -HERE-, with us and her brothers.) But if it had been a foursome, would we have accepted them? (Three seemed like a great fit, but four would have probably turned us away.) They are here.
You could follow these messy trails for generations. Every family is affected. And you can expand it to entire nations and peoples. Slavery was terrible - should there be so many black people in this country? (Let us be sure to blame the African sellers as well as the European and American buyers.) They are here.
Why are we here?
Rick Warren puts it so beautifully:
You are not an accident.
Your birth was no mistake or mishap, and your life is no fluke of nature. Your parents may not have planned you, but God did. He was not at all surprised by your birth. In fact, he expected it.
Long before you were conceived by your parents, you were conceived in the mind of God. It is not fate, nor chance, nor luck, nor coincidence that you are breathing at this very moment. You are alive because God wanted to create you! The Bible says, The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me (Psalm 138:8a NIV).
God prescribed every single detail of your body. He deliberately chose your race, the color of you skin, your hair, and every other feature. He custom-made your body just the way he wanted it. He also determined the natural talents you would possess and the uniqueness of your personality. The Bible says, You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something (Psalm 139:15 Msg).
Because God made you for a reason, he also decided when you would be born and how long you would live. He planned the days of your life in advance, choosing the exact time of your birth and death. The Bible says, You saw me before I was born and scheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your Book! (Psalm 139:16 LB).
God also planned where you'd be born and where you'd live for his purpose. Your race and nationality are no accident. God left no detail to chance. He planned it all for his purpose. The Bible says, From one man he made every nation and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live (Acts 17:26 NIV).
Nothing in your life is arbitrary. It's all for a purpose.
Most amazing, God decided how you would be born. Regardless of the circumstances of your birth or who your parents are, God had a plan in creating you. It doesn't matter whether your parents were good, bad, or indifferent. God knew that those two individuals possessed exactly the right genetic makeup to create the custom you he had in mind. They had the DNA God wanted to make you. While there are illegitimate parents, there are no illegitimate children. Many children are unplanned by their parents, but they are not unplanned by God. Gods purpose took into account human error, and even sin.
As we celebrated Bobcat's eighth birthday last weekend, I was so thankful for God's mysterious plans. I'm sure you've heard the saying, "God draws straight with crooked lines." I praise God for those darn broken ovaries. Bobcat, I'm so glad that you are here. You are ours. You are loved.
John Paul II, Letter to Adoptive Families (Sept 5, 2000)
Since this is National Adoption Month, and I've been remise in posting that... I thought I would share this quote from the late, great JPII!
And then, perusing the news online with my coffee this morning, I came across this story:
Breakthrough Windpipe Transplant Uses Stem Cells
And, you guessed it, they are talking about adult stem cells, not embryonic stem cells. Isn't it interesting how the scientific research that respects human life also yields the greatest results? It's almost as if God planned it that way...
I believe that would put the current tally at:
Adult Stem Cell Research - Dozens and counting
Embryonic Stem Cell Research - BIG FAT GOOSE EGG
Friday, November 14, 2008
Two famous modern works by American artist Mark Rothko have been displayed incorrectly on their sides for years in a British museum, art historians say.
"The pieces from Rothko's Black and Maroon series, like many of his popular and valuable works from the 1950s and 1960s, consist solely of colored stripes."
Seriously? If you don't even know which way it's supposed to hang, is it really art? I had to look this guy up on Wikipedia and here is my favorite quote.
"The fact that people break down and cry when confronted with my pictures shows that I can communicate those basic human emotions.. the people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when painting them. And if you say you are moved only by their color relationships then you miss the point."
I took Art Appreciation in college, and I did enjoy it. But come on. You just can't take this so seriously.
Visit them here: Planted in the Valley
Also, how cool is the news of the new "Blessing of a Child in the Womb"? I hope it gets approved and published soon, so we can use it on our boy!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
This morning the boys and I went on our monthly homeschool group field trip. We love these, and I for sure look forward to each month's new location.
This particular station recently received a new fire truck which was the hit, I think, of the entire place (sadly no fire pole... but we were invited back when the new location is opened where they will have one). Also, not only are fire feighters/EMT's stationed here... but the local police force uses it as well... and of course there were several there. For our boys that's pretty much the end all be all of uniformed AWESOMENESS!
Ahhh... a successful and fun morning.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
What does "fairness" mean? The way Senator Obama explains it, it's ensuring a fair outcome. That's not what they used to say. The civil rights leaders wanted a "level playing field". That means a fair opportunity. That's different!
As far as I can tell, in the United States today, every person is given a free education to 12th grade. You do have to pay for college, but there are numerous financing options available. In fact, the poorer your parents are, the more grants you get. That's not fair, is it? It doesn't bother me. I think it's generous and helps families succeed in the long run. But I digress.
No college can discriminate based on race or gender. No employer can discriminate based on race or gender. I'm not claiming that there is no racism, sexism, class-ism in people's hearts. That will never be completely gone. But can anyone deny that every person who works hard has all the opportunity in the world to succeed in this country?
I don't begrudge people with more money and bigger houses. Their superior wealth is due to many things:
-two incomes (working mom)
-inherited family money
-they're smarter than I am
I'll add that some people actually don't want a lot of money. They think it will only bring problems. They want enough to pay their bills and have fun now and then, but they choose to live simply, and to not pursue the next big promotion.
We won't all end up in the same place with the same income and the same amount in our retirement accounts. You can't eliminate these natural variations among people. All we need the government to do is to be a fair referree.
For the most part in this great nation in the 21st century, the OPPORTUNITY is equal. However, the OUTCOME is up to you. And what you get belongs to you. You ought to recognize it as a blessing from God and be generous to those less fortunate. But when the government interferes to "spread the wealth", that is the exact opposite of "fairness".
Of course, we will give to Ceasar what beongs to him, and give to God what belongs to Him. I am not going to hole up in my bunker with my shotgun and refuse to pay taxes and claim that Texas is still an Independent Republic (some people believe that!). But I do hope that the government will recognize its limited role.
I really liked President Bush's support of faith-based organizations. He understood that the constitution's prohibition of the establishment of an official state religion (such as the Church of England) was in no way intended to ban any public reference to religion, or to refuse to partner with people of faith, with well-established organizations that are already doing good work and operating efficiently. Using tax dollars to promote the common good does not equate to a government "endorsement" of one religion over another. Any non-profit organization that is willing to help people ought to be supported, and ought to be allowed to draw their own lines and, yes, discriminate in order to comply with their own morals.
What liberals do not understand is that without faith, people are not motivated to do good works. Some are, but not all. So let people immerse themselves in whichever faith it is that drives them to be a good citizen, whether it be Christian, Buddhist, pantheist, or atheist. But no, liberals would rather forcibly take from one and give to the other ("spread the wealth") than stay out of the way and allow people to give generously as they see fit.
One commenter makes a very interesting point:
If you really wanted to drive the US to socialized health care you must first create a crisis that you can pin on some outside source. In this case it would be the Vatican shutting down hospitals because they don't respects a persons "rights".
Welcome to the end around.
I applaud the bishops' firm stance. A similar situation has already taken place wherein Catholic Charities in Massachusetts does not provide ANY foster care or adoption services because they are no longer allowed to discriminate against those suffering from same-sex attraction (i.e, gays). But the idea that this is all part of the Democrats' plan - to use Catholics as an excuse to advance socialized healthcare - is disturbing. It would be a very tense stand-off. Perhaps the Supreme Court will intervene.
Tax Cuts for the Rich
Suppose every night, 10 men go to dinner. The bill for all ten comes to $100. If it were paid the way we pay our taxes, the first four men would pay nothing; the fifth would pay $1; the sixth would pay $3; the seventh $7; the eighth $12; the ninth $18. The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
The 10 men ate dinner in the restaurant every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement until the owner threw them a curve. “Since you are all such good customers,” he said, “I’m going to reduce the cost of your daily meal by $20.” Now dinner for the 10 only costs $80.
The first four are unaffected. They still eat for free. Can you figure out how to divvy up the $20 savings among the remaining six so that everyone gets his fair share? The men realize that $20 divided by 6 is $3.33, but if they subtract that from everybody’s share, then the fifth and the sixth man would end up being paid to eat their meal.
The restaurant owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man’s bill by roughly the same amount and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay. And so the fifth man paid nothing, the sixth pitched in $2, the seventh paid $5, the eighth paid $9, the ninth paid $12, leaving the tenth man with a bill of $52 instead of $59.
Outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings. “I only got a dollar out of the $20,” declared the sixth man pointing to the tenth, “and he got $7!” “Yeah, that’s right,” exclaimed the fifth man. I only saved a dollar, too. It’s unfair that he got seven times more than me!” “That’s true,” shouted the seventh man. “Why should he get $7 back when I got only $2? The wealthy get all the breaks.” “Wait a minute,” yelled the first four men in unison. “We didn’t get anything at all. The system exploits the poor.”
The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up. The next night he didn’t show up for dinner, so the nine sat down and ate without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They were $52 short!
And that, boys and girls and politicians, is how the tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up at the table anymore. There are lots of good restaurants in Switzerland and the Caribbean.
"...the demands of the law are written in their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even defend them."
It is true that not everyone has the fullness of truth. But nobody can claim that there is no objective right or wrong. Nobody can be "personally opposed, but..."
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Creative Minority Report shows that the Governator wants the courts to overturn it. Could someone please explain to me how they will manage to declare a constitutional ammendment "unconstitutional"?
What do you think they would be saying if it had failed and a bunch of Christians were protesting? Do you think they'd be arrested for hate speech?
Monday, November 10, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
To be fair, there are surely people who didn't vote for Obama because of his race. I don't consider the content above a commentary on race as much as an unthinking infatuation with "change".
A: We all cried when Obama won.
Except maybe for different reasons.
***I was also going to put Baby Jesus on the list, to make MommaLlama laugh. She has a weird sense of humor. But I don't want to offend anybody else.
Happily, the famous Prop 8 "gay marriage" amendment passed in California. Sadly, Prop 4, which would have required parental notification, appears to have failed. We're not talking about parental consent - just notification. Minors can't get their ears pierced or a tattoo without parental consent, or even an aspirin from the school nurse. But an abortion? Sure, why not. They probably got knocked up without their parents' approval. We might as well further distance them from their loving parents and let them further destroy their psyches and souls by killing the baby in private.
At least Arkansas got one right. They banned "unmarried sexual partners" from fostering or adopting children. Good for them. The media indicates that it was "targeted" at gays, and that might have been a primary concern for the voters, but I think it's also great that it applies to heterosexual couples. Marriage is more than a piece of paper. Shacking up or playing house does not make a marriage. In fact, every study shows that it is far more likely to fail, even if the couple does end up married after a time. It's a commitment before God and the state, and children deserve a real family. I applaud single people who foster and adopt - our boys' foster mother was single, and she clearly did an awesome job with them. Many people want to help children even though they haven't found a spouse. But unmarried "partnership" is not normal and healthy and safe for children.
"Two animal-welfare measures passed -- a ban on dog racing in Massachusetts, and a proposition in California that outlaws cramped cages for egg-laying chickens."
Well, I'm certainly relieved. I've been up all night worried about those chickens.
Now look, I don't support animal cruelty. Human rights and kindness to animals are not mutually exclusive. Far from it, they are both very biblical. So it baffles me that people who see dignity in animal and plant life do not extend the same sympathy to unborn humans.
To raise awareness, I'm staging an event. Come on over to the house tonight and watch Daisy and Maggie chase a chicken around the back yard.
(You either gotta laugh or cry, foks.)
These things are cyclical. I'm disappointed, but it's not the end of the world. I think the wholesale change message was merely designed to get votes, and it worked. Even McCain distanced himself from President Bush as much as possible. The whole reason McCain was nominated is because he was the one Republican that a Democrat might vote for. That might have worked if he was running against Hillary. But I called this one as soon as Obama won the nomination. I hoped, but I was ready for this. We've been fed a steady stream of Bush bashing from Hollywood and SNL and Comedy Central and the entire MSM for so long that we voted for "change". Whatever the hell that means. Nobody could explain exactly what they want changed. The war was a big one at first, but the Democrats have definitely backed off on that.
Even in his acceptance speech, Obama hinted that "it may not happen in one year or even one term". In other words, "All that BS I promised? Yeah... that's not really gonna happen. I'm just like all the other politicians. I just wanted your votes. Thanks, suckers."
That's what I'm telling myself, anyway. We'll see how bad it really is soon enough. The worse it goes, the better for Republicans in 2010 mid-term congressional elections. Unfortunately the Democrats will take all the credit for the stock market's inevitable rebound, just as Bush had to take the rap for it's decline. That will be a problem for the Republicans.
I was kind of surprised at Obama's mention of gays in his acceptance speech. That might be indicative of his agenda, or it might just have been an obligatory shout-out to the pink mafia who he knows were big supporters. I suspect the latter.
And FOCA is obviously a big concern. But (maybe someone can enlighten me on this point), perhaps it will pass only to be challenged, and the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Roberts will kill for being too broad and far-reaching. They might not be able to roll back the evil that already exists, but evil may not be able to advance any further.
Finally, the obligatory religious message about keeping life in perspective:
My wife and I have a greater mission, to my mind, than President-elect Obama does. We have these three boys who need a family. They need someone to love them, raise them, teach them, and bring them to God. Everything else pales in comparison.
It strikes me how little these politicians see their families. Even people higher than me in business frequently have terrible family lives because they are so focused on worldy success. Politicians probably justify their pursuit of worldly success by saying that their cause is so great that it's okay to make their families suffer. Wasn't that the main argument against anyone who questioned Sarah Palin's political ambition with a special needs baby at home? - Her cause was great enough... The country needed her more than her family did. A "higher" calling. I don't want to resurrect that whole argument, but part of me is happy for Trig today. (Of course, I would vote for her again if she runs in 2012, but it's way too early for that kind of talk.)
Fr. George Rutler warned on EWTN's The World Over a couple of weeks ago that we should not get too hung up on worldly matters. God still sits on His throne. We just celebrated the feasts of All Saints and All Souls, and that should help us to remember that we are in this world but not of this world.
Monday, November 3, 2008
The bad: Cowboys... At least we have a bye next weekend.
The ugly: At least we know they weren't performance-enhancing drugs...
(Some of you know what I'm talking about.)