Photo courtesy: Relevant Radio
Giving up sweets -- candy, cookies, cake, cupcakes, ice cream, etc etc to someone like me is nearly as hard as quitting nicotine for a smoker. Nearly. See, I can make that analogy because I was a smoker once upon a time. I have a terrible sweet tooth. I adore chewy sour gummy things. Cappuccino and almond cookies. And chocolate mint anything. I, of course, love baking all of it too, and feeding it all to my children & friends. So settling on 'sweets' as one of my sacrifices for Lent wasn't an easy decision. I imagine it may be wildly successful in the diet department though... not unlike cheap adipex.
My kids aren't terribly happy, either. As evidenced by my daughter L recently when I discovered a strange pile of goo in a red mixing bowl in the sink: the remnants at her desperate attempt to bake some sugar cookies on her own. Did I mention she is 7?
Continuing the Big Brother mood that's come to the American car industry it's little wonder that Toyota, one the singularly most-named "dependable" cars that has outsold Detroit models for... oh, years..., finds itself in the Congressional hot seat due to deaths caused by safety issues. How many deaths out of the millions (billions?) of cars they've sold you ask? 40 the news shrieks, but that's not relevant. What's important here is the audacity of this foreign carmaker coming to our country and selling more cars than our own American brands. How dare they! No matter that recalls due to safety issues have affected every single car maker at one time or another. Some have been voluntary and some have not. Some have even caused deaths. Every single death caused by a defective automobile is a tragedy. But I'll admit to being at a loss to understand the absolute vehemence I've seen on the news from some owners of those cars who are acting as if they've been betrayed by the Pope himself.
Toyota will predictably retain its likability among consumers again. They just make a great car. And Obama-nationalized GM well... maybe they'll give us all a handy driveway alarm with every purchase.
"Civil rights are grounded in natural rights. Natural rights are grounded in human nature. Human nature is a rational substance in relationship to the intelligible end of the reproductive act of reproduction. Do you understand that?"
Bigot: A person who wins an argument with a liberal ~ Rush Limbaugh.
With the announcement that CPAC 2010 had accepted sponsorship from gay-rights political group Log Cabin Republicans' splinter group GOProud, political peoples from all walks of life scratched their head in confusion.
Gay sympathists and liberals wondered why in the world GOProud would not only even consider sponsoring CPAC, but to do so alongside conservative groups as Focus on the Family and Concerned Women for America. It has been explained that LCR has become too much of a left-leaning gay rights group that is masquerading as a Republican group. I don't know if I'd use the word 'leaning', much less 'masquerading'.
Conservatives and pro-family attendees pondered why CPAC would accept sponsorship from a group whose raison d'être was not exactly in alignment with the very principles that CPAC was founded on. Principles that attendees and invited speakers, and yes sponsors, generally share.
Personally, I am in agreement with Ryan Sorba's quote from above. I am not one of those who thinks Republicans must take on a "big tent" policy in order to win because I don't think compromising on core principles is the first step on the path to victory. And defining marriage as an act that is reserved for one man and one woman would be one of those core principles. If winning is everything regardless of how you get there you might as well sit around discussing which foods that burn fat taste the best. That would hold as much significance to your outcome as telling your supporters that those who would see the end of the family are welcome to the party.
Republican Party rock star Sarah Palin shocked and awed us all when she recently spoke at an event and was caught acting just like one of the common folk by inking a crib list of talking points on her hand.
We all know that's not something any elite thinking sort of person would do (read: "liberal", "college professor", "elitist", "reporter") who were collectively shocked. Shocked! Really! Who needs to ink themselves up just to make their own point when it's so much easier to plagiarize and pilfer and recite the words of others? If you aren't sure to what I'm referring, bing "Cashill Ayers Obama Dreams" and have a look-see. Or maybe "New York Times plagiarism". If consequences were a real thing in the land of Big Media, most of these people would be hawking their wares over at www.weightlossdietpills.net
As for the Awed portion of peoples... that's the beauty of it all. That the Governor was caught red-handed with a cheat sheet on her persona before she spoke lent her credibility among the people. Most of us don't travel with teleprompters, speechwriters or notes. And among those who do -- there is forever a gap between the speaker and his audience.
Palin's audience however... feels an immediate connection with her. What Governor Palin delivers in her standing-room-only speeches is something that Obama's daily, and incredibly sterile, sermon seriously lacks: passion. Believability. And yes -- Experience. The experience of actually LIVING it.
Oh and all those smuggies (not to be confused with snuggies) gnashing their teeth over the $100,000 speaking fee that Palin was given for the Tea Party convention?
I seem to recall both reading and hearing Palin affirming she was investing the entire speaking fee into the 'cause'.
Interestingly, I also recall Al Gore earning $6600 a MINUTE for a 30 minute global warming (read: 'sham' speech back in 2007. And that he peddled that same speech for the same neighborhood of cash to many a willing sheeple. I believe he reinvested his fees into the "cause" as well.
I think the money was invested into his oh-so-green private jet that flew him from event to event.
Shh. Can't have little things like the truth getting in the way when there are good people to destroy, right?
Nothing says "I love you" like a card bought for someone because you think you have to.
Let's face it: even 'Dear Abby' has no idea where Valentine's Day originated, or if St. Valentine even existed. All she has are theories. Hallmark and other greeting card and candy companies would have you believe that Valentine's Day is a time-tested and beloved tradition that everyone can celebrate regardless of religion, color or creed. And guess what? It's working! Valentine's Day is second only to Christmas in the sheer volume of greeting card purchases. If I were the government, I'd hire that ad guy to sell the health bill to the public.
Bah humbug, you say to me. I do have fond memories of being in elementary school and trading Valentine cards with my classmates. And some not so fond memories of it as well. But doesn't that apply to nearly everything in life? There's good and bad. I just think there are better ways -- and a whole lot more days -- to say "I Love You" than once a year because TV/Culture/A Store tells you to. See, I'd be thrilled to pieces with the gift of a hot dreamy bubble bath to soak in - anything that offers joint pain relief from the day to day joys of being a mom.
If you can't detect the sarcasm, visit more often.
Thanks to First Lady Michelle Obama we now are being inundated with scads of articles and opinions and "experts" weighing in on the epidemic of childhood obesity, even going so far as to discuss the dangers of BABY obesity, and a bazillion new web ads marketing the very best diet aids. No longer a Maury Povich weekly topic, apparently even kids that look like this...:
... are in danger of tipping the scales and jeopardizing their health and happiness.
If you can't find an inch to pinch on either of the Obama's two girls, you're not alone. Childhood obesity is no laughing matter, but we've generally been talking about children who eat next to nothing of substance aside from fast food in all its deep fried glory and have no limit as to the quantity they are allowed to eat. The two Obama girls could be ballerinas they're so svelte so maybe it's just me, but I'm at a loss to figure how Mrs Obama ever could have looked at either of her girls and worried about an over-abundance of baby fat.
I feel for those girls in their teen years and what is potentially to come... more embarassing and nationwide commentary about their physique no doubt.
Photo courtesy: Wild Yeast
I love figuring out tasty new dishes for old standbys. I'm a big fan of ciabatta bread and love dipping it in pasta sauce or herbed olive oil or one of my favorites: when it's day old and I can toast it, cube it and use as stuffing in a big golden turkey. Even better is when new dishes make a need for buying the best vitamins practically a moot point.
My new favorite dish using ciabatta? Nothing fancy. Just a sandwich.
Cut a wide section of the loaf, then halve horizontally.
Drizzle olive oil.
Toast again (going for a nice golden hue here).
While it's hot, rub a fresh garlic clove all over it.
Layer with slices of roast beef, sharp provolone and fresh-cut basil.
Add arugula if your children didn't eat it all.
Optional: Top with sliced tomato.
Image courtesy: Brain Shavings
As anyone who watches (or laughs at) MSNBC knows Lawrence O'Donnell has a flair for the dramatic. As in dramatic vein-bulging, eye popping, spittle-flying outbursts and attacks on guests... mainly against those of the Republican or conservative persuasion. From the legendary "Liar Creepy Liar" Swift Boat exchange to his "banter" with fellow MSNBC-er Pat Buchanan, Larry's colorful tirades litter video sites and poliblogs all around the web.
His most recent eruption was against President George W. Bush's former speechwriter Marc Thiessen on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" with Joe Scarborough. While he wasn't screaming liar, he did completely lose his cool again, resulting in being uninvited to the interview table during a commercial break. Definitely interesting when you have to cut the mic of the guy who works WITH you. But Larry should bear in mind that his "shenaningans" are certainly bringing a lot of publicity to those very books and authors he despises... I bet his very actions sell a lot more books. And also invite more viewers to MSNBC even if it's only to watch the shows much as people watch train wrecks. If he was harming the brand of NBC in any way he long would have gone the way of shilling acne remedies on late night infomercials.
One month after the horror that was the Haiti Earthquake, a bunch of celebrities finally put aside their own priorities and got together to record an updated version of everyone's favorite 80's sing-a-long "We Are the World". While I can't say who played the part of Stevie Wonder or even Cindy Lauper, I find it fascinating that this was the best this myriad of talent could do.
From the musicians to the actors (Is that Jeff Bridges back there?) to the producers to even rappers... the best these people could come up with was to cover a song that was a pathetic attempt to appear as generous and chivalrous as our friends across the pond? And what do the survivors think if and when they see it? Do they appreciate the effort? Or wonder why the effort took a month?
Oh, to be a fly on the wall that day ... would it have been a culmination of air kisses and industry trade, a litany of gushy weight loss success stories or the refrains of those who'd seen the light and were so pleased to be giving back to the Worldwide community?
With that said - I continue to pray and I do hope their combined, though in my opinion second-rate, effort reaches those in need in Haiti, especially the orphans that we are now told number at a million since the killer quake.
If you thought the title of this post referred to the wacky 80's television sitcom/spinoff that was spawned by the "Golden Girls" and further endeared us to David Leisure (and mullets)... sorry to disappoint.
An 'Empty Nest' to me is supposed to be something I'm facing right about now: the day when our oldest child leaves home for bigger and better things. This would of course entail some kind of planning whether the way to that bigger and better thing went down the college path or career path. It could be something as simple as planning the commute to the local college, finding a job within walking distance to the dorm or shopping for modern sofas for an off-campus efficiency apartment.
For me, however, it involves our oldest child planning her big move -- downstairs. I know it's inevitable that she'll vacate the nest completely and not just travel from one floor to another, but it's nice all the same knowing she likes us enough to hang out a little longer.
If it wasn't for the fact that this white stuff is so darn FUN to an east coast transplant, having this be the view from your front door while trying to fathom ways to stay warm/fed/entertained/dry for nearly 30 hours with no power would've been a lot more miserable. I'm not saying we enjoyed it - but the fact that the kids could go out and make giant snowmen and have snowball fights with dad went a long way to breaking the boredom of sitting around and staring at each other. I do have a better understanding of why snowbirds leave. Who wants to endure this and maybe a load of rheumatoid arthritis stories to pass the time?
And the fun kept coming: Our neighbor with the snow plow got stuck in our driveway 4 times while he gallantly tried to clear it just ONCE for us, but it isn't as if the roads were even passable for another day after the blizzard so it isn't as if we'd be able to get anywhere. We lost a couple more trees: victims to the snow this time, not the ice. One of the girls opted to go out back in her big sister's boots: promptly losing one and trying bravely not to cry as her little barefoot turned into an ice cube. (no, not really) We all "camped" in one bedroom to conserve heat. And hubby percolated coffee with the car engine. (yes, really)
Good times. I think what got us through was that I knew it could always be worse. We could have been stuck with decaf.