Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Just because I can, Here is a laugh

I stumbled across this and found it funny. I'd better be careful posting though, because some places (like my former gas station employers, would expect these kinds of sales from everyone and still having lots of customers)

A young guy from Alberta moves to Vancouver and goes to a big "everything under one roof" department store looking for a job.
The Manager says, "Do you have any sales experience?"
The kid says "Yeah. I was a salesman back in Alberta ."
Well, the boss liked the kid and gave him the job. "You start tomorrow. I'll come down after we close and see how you did. His first day on the job was rough, but he got through it. After the store was locked up, the boss came down. "How many customers bought something from you today?
The kid says "one".
The boss says "Just one? Our sales people average 20 to 30 customers a day. How much was the sale for?"
The kid says "$101,237.65".
The boss says "$101,237.65? What the heck did you sell?"
The kid says, "First, I sold him a small fish hook. Then I sold him a medium fishhook. Then I sold him a larger fishhook. Then I sold him a new fishing rod. Then I asked him where he was going fishing and he said down the coast, so I told him he was going to need a boat, so we went down to the boat department and I sold him a twin engine Chris Craft. Then he said he didn't think his Honda Civic would pull it, so I took him down to the automotive department and sold him that 4x4 Expedition."
The boss said "A guy came in here to buy a fish hook and you sold him a BOAT and a TRUCK?"
The kid said "No, the guy came in here to buy Tampons for his wife, and I said, "Dude, your weekend's shot. You should go fishing."

Monday, April 27, 2009

In the News: Lesbian Couple Legally Married in Iowa Ceremony

We interrup the regularly scheduled entry on Our Potty Training Adventures for a more serious, more important post based on a article I read.
You can visit the actual Article here
And if like me, when you come across these kinds of posts, you would rather just get the jist of it... I included that too!

DES MOINES, Iowa – A lesbian couple has apparently become the first same-sex couple to legally wed in Iowa since a court ruling took effect legalizing gay marriage.The couple was allowed to bypass the state's three-day waiting period before licenses are considered valid.Officials have reported same-sex couples applying for marriage licenses in several counties.Iowa became the third state to allow gay marriage when the state Supreme Court ruled April 3 that a ban on same-sex marriage violated the Iowa Constitution.

There has been alot of same-sex marriage in the news lately. It seems that everywhere you look some state is either trying to legalize it or ban it.

Frankly I don't see the big deal. The reason I bring this up to you is because I am completely horrified by the responses I read to the article above. The responses to the article and I am sure to other such articles seemed out of line to me. These comments are the kinds of comments that make me double think our freedom of Speech. I do love our freedom of speech, I just don't get why people use this freedom in ways that just disgrace them selves. However, this is not the point of this blog. Moving on

It seems that not too long ago interracial relationships were the huge thing. In the 60's many states had it banned until the Supreme Court finally ruled on the manner. I am young still, but I remember it still being controversal to an extent growing up. It was something talked about in whispers. Today in certain areas there are ignorant people against it, but vocalizing against interracial relationships is now taboo.

I bring this up to say, in the 60's I am fairly certain many of the same arguements were being made, including the sanctity of marriage, the God is against it, and the Its not right/natural arguements.

It is time to quit those arguements (I will be bringing you a post on the sanctity of marriage later).

The Bottom line is: Why does it matter to you if two other people get married? Why is this a debate in the United States of America? A Country that prides itself on freedom for everyone. I read in a bulletin a friend posted (it made me laugh but is right on the money) So this brings me to a moving vision in my head of our brave soldiers running into battle with our flag screaming"FREEDOM FOR ALL!!! Unless you are homosexual or not a christian
"what?!?!?! is that not what happens???

For a country that is fighting for freedom for others all around the world, we are doing a poor job of it here at home. Bravo, to the States that have had the Balls, the decency, and the courage to allow same-sex marriage. My hats are off to you!

How is it possible that two other people can ruin the sanctity of MY marriage? (unless those two other people were somehow involved in adultry with me or my spouse) As my friend put it in her bulletin *I CANNOT say this any better myself*
I don't care if the person down the street marries the tree in his backyard; it has absolutely no affect on my marriage whatsoever. My marriage is special and sacred because of how we (my husband and myself) nurture and value it--not because of what other people do or don't do.

Regardless how you feel on the issue, Is it our right to interfere with other people's happiness?
The Declaration of Independence itself says: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

the pursuit of Happiness. What exactly does that mean? To me it means that each of us has the right to be happy (so long as we are not interfering with another's right to be happy). If two people getting married affects your happiness, what does that say about you? How much confidence do you have in your self? How happy could you have been to begin with?

Many people take a religous approach to why same-sex marriages should be banned. To them I say, My Bible tells me not to judge, for those that need reminding here are two separate scriptures that tell us this same thing

Matthew 7:1-Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Luke 6:37-Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

By banning same-sex marriage, by stubbornly opposing it, you are judging it. This does not seem Christian like to me.

We are all entitled to our opinions, however, how we feel about something and how we act on it are two different things. There are days as a parent when I just feel like giving up, there are times when I feel the need to hit something or someone. Yet I do not act upon those feelings, I do not express those feelings. I exhibit self control. This is the socially, and morally acceptable thing to do. We may not like the idea of same-sex marriage, but it is not our place to judge others, or to deny someone of thier happiness.

Stay tuned, Sometime this week, I will be posting on why the sanctity of marriage is already ruined, and all about our Potty Training Adventures and Misadventures

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What I am learning about Imagination, play, and problem solving

As an early Childhood student, I know all about the importance of play. It has been continually drilled in me since day one. (Something I assure you I am eternally grateful to my instructors for) I am able to take any activity a child might do and spout out several concepts a child might be learning. However, reading and hearing something is completely different than experiencing it first hand.

I have heard many a tale about growing up outside, with very few toys and having to entertain yourself. In fact Daddy locked us out of the house. While I mostly read on the porch my two brothers played throughout the neighborhood. You had to use your imaginations to be entertained. The bat you had became a million other things. There were always new games to learn and new rules attached to old games.

Now take a walk into the toy section of your local Walmart, target, or any place that has toys. You will find so many specialized toys. Most of the toys serve one purpose, to limit the imaginations of our children. The toys are stemmed from TV shows mostly or they have one specific use. Even though there are many educational toys out there, how many ways can you use it? Almost everything requires batteries and those that don't are rarely touched. When you are done with that go to the stationary, office or Art area of the store. There you will find coloring books that all you do is use one marker and it colors the page for you.

While those coloring books are great for the times we are out and I don't need to haul 10 markers with 10 caps, or I don't need to worry about him coloring on the chair at the doctor's office. I know several parents that restrict their children's art solely to those. In what way is that encouraging your child to imagine? What masterpiece will your child possibly create? Instead you will gain a picture that is just like 10 million others out there.

I remember watching my brother draw growing up (and he was a good artist) Many times he had just a pencil and paper (remember we were locked outside most of the day) He learned to use different shades of grey to color his pictures. What he really did was learn to be crafty and resourceful. Or, if you want to look at the bigger picture, PROBLEM SOLVING SKILLS.

I have been interning with a local preschool program this semester. In the 3 short months I have worked in the 3 year old class I have been regularly amazed by the advances and discoveries the children have made through playing. One such example, playing with bristle blocks the children have created glasses, people, dogs, rabbits, cars, trains, hammers and drills.
Yes, they still make houses, but they took something very basic and found new interesting ways to use it. Out of the class there are really a few that can do it, the rest imitate the new ways to use the same toy. In fact the same child who showed me the glasses, went on to show me the rabbit. Watching the other children imitate the first and play in new ways shows me that these children WANT to try different things. They don't want to play the same way with the same thing every day. Back to the toys in the store, most of the toys do not encourage this.

Sadly, what many of today's children are starting to lack is problem solving skills. They are used to everything being done for them, used to playing with everything a certain way. It does not seem like an issue now, however the longer they go the more apparent it will be that they lack these skills.

Even many young adults in my generation suffer the same problem for the same reasons. When money is tight most of my generation will resort to the dollar menu or hamburger helper regularly. While I do this from time to time, I also have learned how to create meals from things in my cupboard, and to take a few cheap ingredients and create delicious dinners.

So what is the point of all this? This week is the week of the Young child. It is also National Turn off week. So let's encourage our children's imaginations, and develop thier problem solving skills by trying some of these things:
Turn off the Tube
  1. Purchase basic toys for your children (keep a few in stock for birthdays too)
  2. Find new ways to play with the toys we have
  3. Play with your child
  4. Take some of the old newspaper and turn it into a hat, kite, or boat.
  5. Play a game (I will be posting on the importance of games soon)

Post some of your other suggestions here as well!

Check out some of these resources for more information

Monday, April 20, 2009

Parenthood continues to be the most exhausting, dramatic, tiring, slaving, painful, rewarding experience of my life.

A perfect example is something I wrote a year and a half ago (thus making my son 1 1/2 yrs at the time)

Nothing changes lifes as often and as well as parenting. You go from being a unique individual with likes, dislikes, a sense of style, a taste for fine cuisine (however you may define it), the ability to sleep in all day. You also can call your heart your own. When you become a parent, that all changes in ways unimaginanble. Your vocabulary even changes. The older your child gets the more you find yourself baffled by the mysteries of life. It used to be the biggest mystery in your life was who would be the next American Idol. Now there are even bigger, stranger mysteries. My son is little still. He's a year and a half and I know I have a lot more to learn. My vocabulary consists of: No, let's go Bye-Bye, Where is your cup?, Turn the TV off, Stay away from Dog food, did you stink?, I love you, Give kisses. I expected these, what I did not realize is that "Why, How? Should I even ask?" Would become a regular part of my vocabulary.
This morning, when I greet my smiling son in the crib. He has on a sweater, stretch pants, socks and sandles. Does anyone care to guess who had him last night? Yes, My husband. When he brought my son to the store to visit me, all he was wearing was a diaper and a t-shirt, yet now he is fully dressed and wearing SOCKS AND SANDLES. when I ask why, my husband simply replied, that he had to have them. This is a great example of Toddlerhood for any new parents. This is a world that your child is the sultan of. Its a big giant game that only your toddler knows the rules of and yes they change all the time. Some days he insists on being fully dressed, somedays he wants the blue shoes, other days the green. Somedays he won't wear any at all.
I get over the whole socks and sandles. Later after I have dropped my son off and come home to grab my insurance card, I find his hat. Outside. On the street. I don't even want to know.
These are just a few examples. Other mysteries I often encounter, Why will you eat it one day but not the next? Why does the TV have to be on? Why do you have to sleep on top of everything in the bed? Why do you insist on wearing socks but get mad when there are feet on your PJ's? How is it when I put brand new socks on you, at the end of the day only one is covered in dirt?
I am sure if I sit here long enough I will come up with a million more mysteries and I am just getting started. But for now these will do. Feel free to comment on your own.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

What I am Learning about House Guests

Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.
~Benjamin Franklin

Recently we have made some changes to my household. My brother has moved back home with Momma. I have split feelings about the move but regardless of them we are learning to readjust as a family.

My Husband has been a lot less tense lately; I don’t know if it’s the vacation he took, or the change. I have had the opportunity to watch him and Will interact more frequently. Will relishes in the extra time he is spending with Daddy. Will is starting to imitate him. I got treated to the only showing of the two of them dancing to “Can’t Touch This” G had Will telling me “It’s Hammer Time” all morning. It’s been a while since I laughed so hard.

While I love my family dearly, and I have always been willing to go far to help out the few family and friends I have. It is nice to be just us alone in our home. I had forgotten how it felt. There are two negative things about it though, first, it is much like starting all over again as we redefine our routines, and second we have to use a sitter more often.

I have learned that no matter
- How much you care for your house guests
- How long they stay with you
- What the contribute to the household
- How comfortable you are with them
A house guest causes more stress than you realize. Its impossible to know what stress your home is under until after the fact.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

What I'm Learning about Strawberry Pie and Parenting

I love children! I'm not just saying this because I have the cutest Toddler. Before I continue, I have to tell you a Real Life Will Story (I like the way that sounds.)

My Almost 3 year old was highly upset at me. You see I had the audacity of limiting the amount of TV he watches! Yes I cut off my Toddler's TV time! He was in the middle of basically telling me I was going to turn on the TV. I was trying to get him to play. Well His yelling and my finally ignoring him, led to his throat starting to hurt him. He wanted a drink. Well at this same time I noticed a stink. SO I told him to go get a diaper while I got his drink. My wonderful Toddler informed me that He was NOT getting a diaper. He did not need a diaper. And put his hands over his chest and turned around to walk away and walked right into the corner of the computer desk. He's got a pretty good mark to show it. After crying a minute, he brought me his diaper. We changed it and I asked him if he still wanted a drink. Well he is still upset with me, so he informs me that No, He does not want a drink. That he can't drink. And turns back around and marches off. He nearly hit the same corner. He marched straight to his bedroom and got his blankets. He sat down with them in the walkway behind the couch. He sat there for 10 minutes with his arms folded (While I essentially ignored him) until he fell asleep on the floor. He showed me alright.

Back to the start. I really do love children. I am in Early Childhood, I want to work with children, but I don't know how yet. (I have got to get moving on that I am not far from graduating) Something has been heavy on my heart lately though. That is foster parenting. We'll have our spare bedroom back soon. I want to set it up as a foster room. I requested information on it and I was really surprised at how quickly the lady at DSS got back to me! Very Pleasantly Surprised. She is mailing me information today so that G and I can look at the information and decide if it is what we are truly ready to do.

The only thing he asks is that we don't take any serious cases. He deals with a lot of runaways. Certain homes specialize in therapeutic care or something and he is constantly on calls to those homes. He says its always the same couple of houses and always different children. I understand he deals enough with it at work, not wanting to bring it home. I told him that sadly, all the children entering the foster system will have some baggage. But I still want to look into it.

I just feel that since G and I won't be having more children for a few years, and that I have so much in my heart to offer, I want to put it to good use. We'll have a spare room, even though he wants to convert it into his Xbox room.

Right now we are just getting information and praying. I can never cease praying on it.

Speaking of praying. Not too long ago I had no clue how to pray with my Toddler. I knew that I wanted to raise my child to know about God, Jesus, the Bible and everything they have to offer. I want my son to be strong in faith and inspiration to others. So I did what I always do when I am clueless. I ask others, and I research. I want to share with you what I found.

This article, Praying with your Toddler, Is an inspirational article about one parents journey introducing prayer to her children. It really touched me and gave me an idea of how to start. I have to say that since my son and I started to pray he really enjoys it. Now he even starts his own prayers when playing. He is also much better behaved during prayer at church. A few times he has caught others not closing their eyes and called them out on it. We've been praying together maybe a month.

We just this week started adding Bedtime Bible stories to our routine. We have an older version without many pictures. Each story takes 2 minutes to read. Perfect for that squirrelly Little one in your life. We are 4 stories into it and he is starting to stay still and listen. We will start asking simple questions soon. I am glad that someone blessed me with the book. It is an excellent way to teach him appropriate lessons from the Bible!

Now to move on. My In Laws have been layed on my heart lately. They have a lot on thier plates lately. I wanted to do something to cheer them up. That's when Christy posted her Strawberry Pie recipe. It looked perfect. I headed over to Food Lion and Strawberries were on sale! So I got to work making two of them. Well as it turned out no one in my house wanted any. (They don't know what they are missing.) However, the Pies were very much appreciated at my In Laws. It was Devine! I suggest you head over there and check it out. Thank you so much Christy, you have no idea how much you helped make someone's night! It really is the little things that make the biggest blessing.