Trying to raise my kids the best I can

Friday, April 27, 2007

We've become a statistic

We're foreclosing our house. Right now, in our area (Boston area) the foreclosure rates have skyrocketed. The housing market got ridiculously expensive and now it's crashing. For us personally, it basically comes down to the fact that we were barely making it when my husband had a job and now that he is working temporary jobs off and on there is no way we can keep making these mortgage payments. I've seen this coming since January so I'm pretty much past greiving for it. We'll be leaving in the next month or two. We're moving in with the in-laws and, looking on the bright side, I'm looking forward to decluttering and cutting down on debt and just living life simply (as my favorite book on the sidebar expounds upon).

The irony of this post placement next to the previous post is not lost on me, but for the record, my husband sold that car two years ago and we now own our (older) cars outright, so I don't want to give the impression that we are driving ridiculously expensive cars while losing our house.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Honda copied my husband's car design

This is the car my husband designed three years ago when he got an S2000 and then modified it with a body kit and changed the color. He took first runner up in an auto show competition two years ago for the design/look. The picture on top is the new Honda S2000 CR set for release in a couple months. Eerily similar. My husband has always had great taste when it comes to cars. That's one of the reasons I gave him my phone number the day we met (pathetic of me huh?) He always changes the kit and color and makes it look REALLY sweet. He was doing this WAY before "The Fast and the Furious" came out and made it cool.

Friday, April 20, 2007

partial birth abortion ban

I just wanted to take a moment to recognise the tremendous event that occurred this week when the Supreme Court banned partial birth abortion for the nation. It is so significant because it is one small step towards nationally limiting this gruesome horrendous act. An act that could never ever save a woman's life - despite what they claim. If a woman's pregnancy is killing her they can induce labor and do their best to save the baby; not shove scissors up the base of it's skull.


Thursday, April 19, 2007


This girl is busted!


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Ah, school

I have to give credit where credit is due and say that I finally do feel like I know more than I did three months ago when I started. My biggest area's of growth are charting and knowledge of drugs. I'm starting to feel like a real nurse and when I go to clinical I get to act like one too.

That being said, this is my one place to safely vent about my stupid professors. So here's the latest:

My developmental professor is teaching us about the major theorists: Piaget, Kohlberg, Freud. And she's explaining Freud's principals as if they were fact. For example: "If I child does not come out of the oral stage in a healthy way he will have oral issues as an adult like smoking, talking too much, etc." So I asked "Has this been proven, scientifically????" And she said "Well, Freud is accepted in the scientific community, so yes". scratching head <span class= But a few days later I was reading a magazine called "Science News" where I found this confirmation of my skepticism...

"An entire scientific community could be wrong about something, be expected to know that they are wrong and for nearly inexplicable reasons persist in being wrong. This happened when the medical establishment embraced Freudian psychology as an explanation of human behavior. In spite of extensive training in the biological and chemical sciences, medical practitioners of Freudian psychoanalysis ignored the basic principal that any scientific explanation of natural phenomena, including human behavior, must be testable. Perhaps physicist-author Lee Smolin is right in suggesting that we are witnessing groupthink again."

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Deena weighs in on Imus

Sorry readers to bore you with an overhyped subject but I just had to weigh in...
For my brother and sister in law in Norway: Don Imus is a liberal radio talk show host (also syndicated on TV) who, last week, was talking about the NCAA girls championship basketball game. He referred to the losing Rutgers team as "Nappy haired hos". Yikes. So there was an uproar and his show was taken off the air for ten days but the pressure continued and then he was fired. So now the past few days has been filled with "Should he have been fired?" debates.

I couldn't stand Don Imus. So I'm happy he's gone. But I know the liberals are squirming under the loss of one of their biggest radio show hosts too, so I'm sure that fear is behind a lot of his defenders.

My opinion:

The main argument I hear in the media is "There is a double standard. Rappers can say those words but Don Imus can't". I just had to address this issue because those two instances are apples and oranges. FIRST of all, "top 40" rap is pretty clean; when bad words are used, the "clean" versions are the only versions played on the radio. If people want to buy the bad stuff they have the right to do that. The same will now be true for Don Imus who will undoubtably be available on XM radio. SECOND OF ALL when rappers say those words they are not calling a specific person a derogatory name. HUGE difference. Because I can assure you that the few times that rappers start rapping about specific people - like each other. The consequences are often FAR worse than what happened to Don Imus. It often results in "the death penalty" by way of drive by. So I would say there is NOT a double standard when it comes to rap vs. Don Imus.

Ironically, when I talked to (white) "people on the street" the argument that came up again and again was basically "I'm sick of there being a double standard. If someone said "white trash hos" no one would have been upset. And the argument usually quickly turns to how unfair racial preference/reverse discrimination/affirmative action is. As much as I agree with them, it is no arguement against what Imus did. There is just no excuse .


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Jar O' Jellybean Joy

I won the jellybean guessing contest at the local supermarket! The timing of it couldn't have been better because we're between paychecks and just scraping by. I won a $25 gift certificate! (Which I promptly used). This is the second time I've won one of these. I'll share with you my winning strategy... I count the jellybeans on the bottom layer. Then I count the number of rows. In this case there were 60 jellybeans on the bottom and approximately 14 rows. So I multiplied that and got 840. Then I added one for the heck of it and put in my guess of 841. The actual number was 850. Horray! Now you can share in my jellybean victories! Just don't enter the same contests as me, okay?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The history of Lowell

My son was in a school musical about the history of mills in Lowell. It was well done, adorable of course, and I learned so much. Here is an interesting story about the man who our city was named after...

In 1810, the thirty-five-year-old Lowell set out to steal one of the foremost industrial secrets of that age: the plans of the British textile industry’s Cartwright loom. In such locales as Edinburgh, Lancashire, and Derbyshire, textile makers were spinning cotton and wool into thread and then weaving the thread into cloth with water-powered, mechanical looms—an economic alchemy that transformed cotton and wool into gold for England. The secrets of this technology were so precious that British law forbade the export of the machinery, the making or selling of drawings of that equipment, and the emigration of the skilled workers.

Thanks to Samuel Slater, who brought the secret of England’s automated spinning machines across the ocean, America knew how to turn cotton fibers into thread mechanically. But the nation did not know how the power loom worked or how to machine-weave thread into cloth in the vast quantities that it made possible.

No Mission: Impossible adventure was better planned or executed than Lowell’s caper. First, he developed a cover story for his trip to England: his health was bad, and his doctor prescribed a foreign tour for relaxation and recuperation. While the idea of touring cold, dank nineteenth-century British mills where the air was filled with lint might seem an improbable cure for any affliction, Lowell was a major American merchant shipper, and his Boston pedigree was impeccable. To allay the suspicions of his intended victims, he took his wife and young children with him to England, stayed in the best hotels, and toured the countryside in an elegant rented carriage.

British textile producers welcomed the touring American importer, proudly showing him whatever he wanted to see in their factories— something they never did for their local competitors. The idea of a proper Bostonian, a Harvard graduate, a rich shipping merchant being an industrial spy out to steal their manufacturing processes was simply ridiculous.

What his British hosts did not realize was that Lowell possessed an almost photographic memory and that he shared their avaricious economic attitudes. Nor did they know that after each day’s tour, he would return to his room and carefully draw out what he had just been shown and record the details of his conversations. Eventually, Lowell accumulated from his British hosts all the technical information he needed to build a fully integrated textile mill—one that could take cotton bales in one end and ship finished cloth out the other. How he got the plans out of England remains unknown. His bags were searched twice, but nothing was ever found.

On returning to Boston, Lowell and his brother-in-law, Patrick Tracy Jackson, raised $100,000 in capital and created the Boston Manufacturing Company. They then bought an existing building just outside Boston near Waltham, a facility with a ten-foot waterfall, to power their first mill. Working with a hired mechanic, Lowell constructed a prototype mill and a power loom that were superior to the British versions he copied. His company was an immediate success. Lowell then built a group of mills at a village that eventually was named after him. Soon the Boston Manufacturing Company was weaving more than one-third of a mile of cloth per day, a feat that was as extraordinary then as going to Mars would be today.

By the time Lowell began to build his first factory, America was again at war with the British. Instantly, he became a hero for bringing America England’s most valuable industrial secret. After the war, the British moved to destroy their new U.S. competitors, using the old technique of selling their goods in the U.S. market for far less than Lowell’s production costs—a predatory practice called “dumping.” The British used cotton produced in India with cheap labor, brought it to England, mechanically spun it into thread and wove the thread into cloth, and then shipped it to America. The English product was not only less expensive; it was of better quality, reflecting greater experience.

Lowell and his U.S. colleagues responded as Hamilton had foreseen. In 1815, they enlisted the political help of Massachusetts Senator Daniel Webster, who was not a strong supporter of protective tariffs. But he did believe that the United States required self-sufficiency in manufactured goods if it was to prosper. That could not be if English and European producers were allowed to dump their goods on the U.S. market and kill America’s infant industries. In 1816, Webster, working with Senator John Calhoun of South Carolina, who represented a major cotton-producing state, pushed through Congress a protective tariff on cotton and woolen imports of 30 percent for two years, 25 percent for another two years, and 20 percent thereafter. This gave the infant U.S. textile industry a market all its own and the time to grow. American cotton producers were also given a market: American textile makers. And those who truly wanted foreign goods could continue buying them, but at a higher cost and with the import duties going to the U.S. Treasury. It was Webster and Calhoun’s legislation, but it was Hamilton’s plan in action.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


Tuesday, April 03, 2007

I'm going to China!

I applied for my college's International trip to China this summer. There were ten spots and about 50 applicants. The applications were judged based on grades, an essay, 2 recommendations from professors, and a panel interview. Whew. I got the call last night that I am one of the chosen and I am very excited. Of course, I'm nervous about leaving my three year old for that long, but I keep reminding myself that I left my first born for three days when he was 1, so I can leave my 3 year old for ten days and we will survive. It's just that he still breastfeeds so much.

I applied for my passport last week "just in case" and it should be here in plenty of time. An important part of this trip is a class about China so I will be starting that in two weeks and I am excited about that. The nation of China is so up and coming (and historical). It is a major market and political player and I will be a better person for knowing all about it.

I will be bringing a laptop and blogging from China (hopefully every day), so you will have full updates. (And yes, I will get to walk the Great Wall of China- one of the things I am most looking forward to doing).


Monday, April 02, 2007

God's fingerprints

I love, love, love learning about the world around me. I was taught from a young age to notice the designs in nature (God's fingerprints). So when I cut these two melons up the other day and noticed the same zig-zag pattern I was just awed. Look at the beautiful way the seed travels from the center of the melon to the outside. When it reaches the rind I'm sure it will burrow to the other side and plant itself. It is so beautiful!
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