- Girl Scout Cookies Are Big Business
- Christmas Memories: The Dollhouse
- Going Back To School
- 20 Women Who Shaped Our World
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- Obesity, Deadly Sins & The American Plague
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- Another Grandchild Makes the Grade
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- LA Paper Sounds GMO Warning
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February 12th, 2012
As a former girl scout member, I loved seeing the numbers in this infographic. It amazes me that almost 3/4 of a billion dollars worth of girl scout cookies are sold each year. That’s no small potatoes.
I think girl scout cookies are great because they teach girls a bout business and sales and marketing. However, part of me wonders whether the organization loses sight of it’s deeper mission with so much money at stake.
Filed under Girl Scouts | Comment (0)
From: Top Business Degrees
December 15th, 2010
As I consider how to give gifts to my children that will really engage their imaginations and continue to be enjoyed for years, I am reminded of the one gift I received as a child that brought the most fun and memories- my dollhouse. My parents, who were not especially handy people, bought a kit and spent many hours secretly constructing our dollhouse for Christmas morning. It was designed to be a miniature model of our own home with wallpaper and carpet and siding that matched. They made it even more exciting by investing in real working ceiling lights and lamps for the rooms. My sister and I were thrilled to see it Christmas morning and played with it for hours everyday over the years. We also loved shopping in stores and catalogs with our mom for new furniture. And this favorite toy even became the foundation for a Social Studies research project where I outlined the development and social customs surrounding dollhouses throughout the ages.
The dollhouse still stands in my mother’s home with a piece of plexiglass over one side to keep it dust-free. I see it and remember the great joy of playing beside my sister, who is still my close friend. Now my 2 year-old-son looks at it with great interest when he visits his grandmother, and I know when he gets just a bit bigger that the dollhouse will entertain a whole other generation of children- complete with lights that still work, rooms full of furniture, rocking chairs and deliveries on the porch, and a mailbox. But it doesn’t seem that boys typically share the same interest in decorating, and re-decorating, and playing family that we did as kids. Though I love having two boys of my own, I am most sad not to have a daughter who can share my love of dollhouses.Filed under Family Life, Holidays | Comment (0)
November 18th, 2010
As women we celebrate new adventures and joyfully enter new phases of life. Many women get to a certain point in their lives, often after having raised kids, where they are ready for a new challenge. And this new challenge might be learning a new skill or even starting a new career.
For many women, the challenge of choice is a college education. I’ve known several mothers who, after spending 4-6 years raising kids with very little intellectual stimulation, choose to go back to school to get re-baptized into the world of adult life… a new start.
But going back to school later in life isn’t without challenges. Especially as a parent if you still have kids in the home. It’s a balancing act and sometimes you just won’t have enough time. But just because you can’t experience college like a single young adult who’s 18 years old, doesn’t mean it’s not worth your effort. It might just be the challenge you were looking for.Filed under Accomplishments | Comment (0)
October 25th, 2010
Women are playing an increasingly larger role in shaping the world we live in. That’s great news! And about time. There are countelss women who have helped make our world a better place, but some stand out as having made culture changing contributions.
The website SuperScholar has listed twenty of the most influential women intellectuals of our time. Admittedly, I don’t recognize most of these women, but we probably all owe them some debt of gratitude for bringing about a better world.
Here’s are the top ten and then you can read about them all and see the last 10 at the original article:
1. Margaret Atwood
2. Aung San Suu Kyi
3. Karen Armstrong
4. Susan Blackmore
5. Mary Daly
6. Midge Decter
7. Barbara Ehrenreich
8. Susan Faludi
9. Susan Greenfield
10. Germaine Greer
Read the rest here: 20 Most Influential Women IntellectualsFiled under Accomplishments | Comment (0)
September 17th, 2009
Exciting news from the northern branch of the family, younger daughter is expecting another baby! Sunshine will have a little brother or sister just about two years younger. Which, if you aren’t planning to have a lot of kids, is pretty good spacing. Far enough apart to give each a good measure of developmental uniqueness and give Mom a bit of a break, close enough together to allow a strong friendship to develop between them.
#1 grandson is of course going to press once again for his favorite name – Cool Ass Mojo – and once again isn’t likely to prevail. That’s okay, he can name his own child thusly. Grandpa and I are just delighted, hoping this birth will be much easier on our sweet daughter who has proven herself to be an extremely good Mom. Her family is happily well-adjusted and for her good choices we are grateful.
Meanwhile, Grandpa’s intensive work schedule in various regional public school systems kicked into high gear when school started in August, bringing home more than ‘the usual’ season-change cold this year. Some of you may know that the new H1N1 flu is officially rampant here in the Southeast. Some wish to call it swine flu, but it’s also got elements of bird flu and Spanish flu – a regular Chimera. So I just call it the Unicorn Flu, in honor of the worldwide panic it’s engendered since its so-public appearance in Mexico City this past April.Baby Names, Family Life, Family Planning, Healthy Babies, Medicine, Pregnancy, Vaccination | Comment (0)
August 10th, 2009
The first part of July was very full of relatives here at the homestead, and my relatives run the gambit in ‘size’ designations between morbidly obese and thin as rails. I’m a sort of in-between person. Weigh the same now (approaching my 40th anniversary next month) as I did the day I graduated from high school and the day I got married. Don’t tend to gain or lose and never have. Hubby is one of those ‘high metabolism’ sorts who could look like a starving Ethiopian with little trouble just by skipping a few meals, but keeps firm muscles under the no-fat covering by getting way more exercise than most guys these days. Comes from the homestead lifestyle, heating with wood (thus cutting and splitting), maintaining the acre of up-and-down yard, and playing lots of ‘challenging’ disc golf.
Our daughter takes after him. You’d swear she’s got a giant tapeworm or something watching her woof down more food in a single sitting than I’m likely to eat all day (or over two days!), never gains an ounce and has to eat lots to maintain what little she’s got. Her son takes more after his father, and could easily put on significant weight if he’s not careful. Of course his diet is worse than ours – he likes fast food burgers, fries and soft drinks, whereas we are mostly vegetarian, seldom eat out, and drink primarily our great spring water in herb/green teas or plain, or mixed with straight fruit juices like blueberry, cranberry, pomegranate or some combo. All of us get sugar cravings occasionally and are known to pig out on chocolate or other candy, but that’s rare enough not to be a big deal, living as far from town as we do. Daughter likes a little coffee in her sugar, when she’s not here a pound of sugar can last for months. Hubby and I don’t use it in coffee or on cereal (though we do like fruit on our Cheerios), and don’t drink milk straight-up ever. Daughter can consume a gallon a day without even trying.
Out of five kids in my family, 4 of us siblings tend to be slender like me. Yes, the poundage has rearranged quite a bit over the course of my 58 years, but you’ll have this (it’s a gravity thing, I think!). The youngest, my baby sister who had a 17″ waist when she got married, is now morbidly obese. She and her three children spent four days here, took grandson back with them to Florida. Her two sons are like her hubby, high metabolism guys whose plain old nervous energy keeps them skinny. They don’t exercise or even go out of the house much at all, so that’s not a factor. Her daughter is just now ‘chunky’, risks being fat as she gets older if she isn’t careful. Our parents weren’t fat folks, in fact, Mom was a runway model with long legs and perfect posture, lots of grace and beautiful chestnut hair – a real beauty. Grandparents weren’t particularly large on either side, though my father’s sister was a fat woman as was my mother’s grandmother. So there are no doubt a few fat genes in the mix, where there seem to be none on my hubby’s side.
And indeed genetics do play a role. Primarily, I suspect, in how metabolism is regulated, along with hunger signaling and tendencies to store fat. But my observations also tend to support my strong suspicions that most of it is diet and exercise habits. Primarily diet. This was doubly confirmed during their four-day visit, when we had to be the food suppliers.Diet, Family Gatherings, Family Life, Nutrition, Relationships | Comments (2)
July 6th, 2009
The every-other-year trip to sunny Oklahoma to visit with Grandma (great-grandma to my grandkids) was quite the stressful situation this year, which is the year my hubby’s and my sole remaining parent turns 87. She was hospitalized for ten days a couple of months ago with a terrible case of food poisoning – we don’t buy the ‘flu’ excuse, it wasn’t flu – and we flew our daughter out there to stay with her when she got out because we couldn’t take the time off. Daughter made arrangements for home health care, which she needs because she lives alone in a too-big house. The one her mother bought just off Main Street, which survived the tornado that took out the hotel a block in front and the Presbyterian Church a block behind. Back when my hubby was 8 years old and Norma and Clint ran the hotel.
She has also lost sight in one eye, so needed someone to take her car keys away for public safety’s sake. This also makes her depth perception non-existent, and has led to a series of nasty falls that have us and her other son’s family who lives about 45 minutes away most paranoid. Her friends and neighbors love her, but don’t want to be the ones to discover her dead one day alone in that big house, but she’s stubbornly clung to her independence since her husband of 50 years died over a decade ago.
Luckily she has very tough bones, product no doubt of her youthful career as a Rodeo Queen – champion barrel racer – and the number of times she’d been bucked off her horse. But it’s inevitable that one of these days she’s going to break something, and all her choices will be gone. That would be a very sad end to a wonderfully storied life, and not something we would ever wish upon her. So our job was to unite with the rest of the family and try hard to convince her that she should go into a nice assisted living facility less than a minute away from #2 son.Child-Parent Relationships, Dying, Family Life, Famous Moms, History | Comment (0)
June 23rd, 2009
Pictured is Grandson #2, Michael, who graduated from high school last month and will be attending a college for the artistically gifted, which of course he is. This marks two grandchildren to make it to college, two with rather extreme artistic talents who ought to do very well in the world, and one very, very proud grandma!
We’ll be seeing Mikey and his folks and sister for the week following the 4th of July. Now this is going to be a little bit tricky, but I’m looking forward to Mikey’s complaint-less help in harvesting blackberries for the cobbler he loves so much. We are leaving this coming Saturday for Oklahoma to visit Great-Grandma, who will be 87 in August. We’ll be on our second day homeward on the 4th, and will have to swing through Kentucky on the way home to meet with other sisters, brother-in-laws, nieces and nephews to send my little sister’s ashes over Cumberland Falls, something she made us promise to do before she died a couple of years ago. It’ll be the first time we’re all together since then, and I’m really looking forward to it.
Meanshile, Mikey and family will be leaving Atlanta on the 4th to come here. I’m going to give them the ‘break-in’ secret for getting into the house if we’re not home yet (and we might not be), because we’ve been having a bit of bear trouble this year. Don’t want them camping in the yard, for very good reason.Family Gatherings, Family Life, Grandchild Visits | Comment (0)
June 18th, 2009
First Lady Michelle Obama takes an end-of-term garden work-day to offer some thoughts on healthy food and healthy bodies…
The volunteer students from D.C.’s Bancroft Elementary School who have put some backbone into the First Family’s organic kitchen garden this season enjoyed a fresh lunch salad topped with sweet, fat peas that they’d helped to grow and harvest. For dessert, they got cupcakes topped with berries, also grown in the garden on the South Lawn.
Thus far the well-tended organic garden, which sports various cultivars chosen by the White House Chef to compliment the cuisine served both to the Obama family and to their guests – with a majority of the bounty going to local D.C. food kitchens – has thus far produced 80 pounds of fresh food. And it’s still June, not even tomato time yet! As the First Lady says in this clip, getting involved in growing, harvesting and preparing fresh, organic food can help with a number of health-related issues that plague this country’s citizens…
Obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure are all diet-related health issues that cost this country more than $120 billion each year. That’s a lot of money. While the dollar figure is shocking in and of itself, the effect on our children’s health is even more profound. Nearly a third of the children in this country are either overweight or obese, and a third will suffer from diabetes at some point in their lifetime. In Hispanic and African American communities, those numbers climb even higher so that nearly half of the children in those communities will suffer the same fate. Those numbers are unacceptable.
A. Siegel of Get Energy Smart blog does a little math and comes up with an intriguing scenario related to gardens just about a quarter the size of Michelle’s. If just five million Americans were inspired to create a Victory Garden in their yard (or in containers on their deck or patio, in window boxes, inside by a sunny window, etc.) that produced 20 pounds of food each year, it would amount to 100 million pounds (50,000 tons) of fresh, healthy vegetables and fruits grown right at home or in the neighborhood. That’s 50,000 tons of good food that would not have to be grown with chemical intensive agriculture, harvested by third world peasant/slaves, shipped to your local market using fossil fuels, and costing a hefty chunk of the shrinking household budget.
The added incentive is of course getting people outdoors instead of parked in front of the television when they get home from work, bending, digging, hoeing, tending and simply enjoying their garden. Even that little bit of exercise and simple enjoyment can help reduce a tough day’s accumulation of stress, and reducing stress has its health savings dividends as well.
Kudos once again to our beautiful First Lady, her helpers in the kitchen, the Obama girls and the students of Bencroft Elementary for a tasty job well done. Things like this are a fun and healthy chunk of the Change We Need!Filed under Diet, Family Life, Generational Learning, Green Choices, Nutrition, Vegetables | Comments (2)
May 18th, 2009
I’ve been back and forth with #1 Daughter-in-Law down in Florida about grandson’s upcoming graduation from high school (Yea, Mikey!) and their plans to visit us here in the mountains the week of the 4th of July. It’s a little tricky, since we’ll be in Oklahoma to visit Great-Grandma until the 3rd, so we’ll both be converging on the homestead the afternoon of Independence Day. The good news is we’ll all be traveling through fireworks states, so should have some nice sparklies for the evening!
My DiL is an organic gardener like me (I’m so proud!), we often go back and forth about different cultivars, particular techniques for (trying to) beat bugs, etc. She linked me to a story from the LA Environmental Health Examiner this morning that I’m making the subject of this post.Diet, Green Choices, Healthy Babies, Marketing to Kids, Nutrition, Pregnancy, Research | Comment (0)