Saturday, December 4, 2010

Startling Facts I Recently Learned

I love lists.  They are easy to read, easy to create, and easy to check things off of, and that makes me feel accomplished. This list is mainly composed of stuff that has happened to me in the past few days.

1. When my eyes are dilated, I love my hands, my nails, and the diamond in my ring. Things look much more pleasant and sparkly for some reason this way.

2. I was informed, after my eyes were dilated, that "BIFOCALS" might help if I continue to read, go to school, or use the computer.  I did not want to hear that!!

3. While cleaning up in the kitchen I found a scrap piece of paper in my flax grinder (coffee grinder used to grind flax).  I guess this meant that I ate paper for breakfast with my oatmeal....that is kinda weird.

4. I fought the registrar at UAF and I won!

5. I jumped a friends car battery today, she put her ends on wrong and BOTH our cars are running fine, but the cables melted down and caught on fire.

6. I found a lady in line at the post office that was wearing BOG boots! They ARE actually sold in Fairbanks, AK!  yay!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Great Gray Owl

Are you in love with owls?  I never had been. Not until I went hunting north of the arctic circle, meeting up with my husband and hunting party did I find my love of such wonderful amazing creatures.  My mother came up to babysit the youngsters back in September 2008 or I wouldn't have been able to go at all.

After a day of scouting through swamps and hillsides for a giant moose, my husband and I came tracking through a burnout area.  As we made a turn in the trail, directly in front of us perched on the only branch of a blackened tree was the largest and my most fierce owl I had ever seen in my life.  In fact, I had never seen an owl THIS close ever. The branch was just 6 feet off the ground and just about 20 feet in front of us. The owls hypnotizing eyes were a piercing lime green.  We just stood there and stared in awe.  I had left my camera at camp another half mile away but tried as hard as I could to etch the beauty of the owl in my mind.  The owl, so close so we could see every detail, had amazingly perfect feathers, not one out of place and ruffed out to make himself appear as large as possible, with so many fascinating shades of gray.  It looked to be the size of a healthy toddler, I mean one of my toddlers, a kid way too big for his age.  He seemed to say to me, "This is MY tree, MY trail, My woodland, and I am guardian." When the spell was broken we quietly left, one step at a time, slowly.  I fell in love with owls that day.

Here is something neat I found on another blog.  It is a calendar of owls by many different artists.  Just select 12 of your favorite owls and then download. It creates a pdf calendar to print.  Click the picture below to make an owl calendar, the kids will love this!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Seatbelt Hair

If you would like to get all of my posts don't be afraid to subscribe by email, there is a link somewhere on this page or click the follow button if you are already on blogger.  I really would love to see your blog too so please leave a comment with your own url.

My hair is getting longer.  Not because I really want it longer but because I have not had time to get it cut.  I am also waiting for my daughter to graduate hair school in Anchorage, so she can style my mop. Here is a major problem I am having with long hair.  Maybe this has happened to you, maybe not. I need help with it because it happens every single day, sometimes, 3 or more times.

At the end of a commute from daycare, girl scout meetings, or from the university that I attend five days a week, I throw the people wagon into park and unclick the seatbelt.  Then....ZZZZIIiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiP!  The seatbelt gets sucked up along with all the left side of my hair into the little dark hole on the side of my car, OucH!!!  It really hurts too!

This may be affecting my brain on that side.  Will my midterm grades suffer????

10 Things I Don't Do

I got this idea from another blog, the Diaper Diaries.  I love it and yes it is liberating!  Here is my top ten don'ts.

1. I don't take out the trash, I don't even put a bag in it when it has been taken out. There are plenty of  people that I cook for in my house that can do it.
2. I don't clean up after pets, I only clean up after the children that own the pets.
3. I don't keep regular hours for anything.  I get to school mostly on time, and get my kids to school on time, but there are many nights that I am up til 3am studying and relistening to lectures by telephone.  We eat dinner whenever it gets finished, anywhere from 4:30pm to 9:30pm.  I have always wanted to get the kids to bed at the same time every night but every day is never the same as the one before it so I find the task is too daunting.  Also, I drive a semi-truck on the side as a sub. Any driver can call me at any time of the day or night to cover for them. It usually works out that I don't have to work that much but can be inconvenient.  Therefore, naps are always a win-win at my house, regular hours are not a win.
4. I don't gut the game I shoot.  I have plenty of hunting support that is willing. Plus, who else will hold the flashlight?
5. I don't let my kids do sleepovers unless it involves camping, hunting, or fishing.
6. I don't always do turkey for Thanksgiving.  I am pretty sure it will be kubsa this holiday, especially since I am creating a new tray in ceramics just for the tabouleh! yeh!
7. I don't paint anything white, I like lots of color!!
8. I don't ever let anyone win at tickle torture, EVER!
9.  I don't mow the lawn.  I really want to, but my 2nd son and I fight over who gets to do that chore and I always lose, therefore, he is king of the lawn. (Once last summer I cheated and snuck a partial mow.)  My son is a genius though, he usually hides the mower or the gas from me. 
10.  I don't host parties that sell stuff. Been there done it, just can't do it anymore.

Now I feel like a brat........

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Two Major Seasonal Events

When living in the far North and the weather starts to change there comes a defining point when it is certain that winter is here (besides seeing ice art all over town).

  • you no longer wear shorts or sandals.....well  mostly
  •  there is snow or ice on the ground
  • you have to change to blisak or studded tires 
  • windshields are always needing to be scraped, plan extra time for this
  • you have to warm your car at least 5 minutes or use auto start
  • you wear hats, scarves, mittens, and a jacket or coat
Far North living has an extra winter seasonal change, it is when the bitter cold and negative temps from 0 to -50 below set in. 
  • you plug in your vehicle at night to keep the block and battery from freezing
  • you might wear polypro underwear and pull out the heavy coat
  • you wear thicker socks and consider wearing bunny boots, mukluks, or norwegian Lobbens
  • you start your car and let it run for 30 minutes before going anywhere
  • you can't send your kids to school without getting turned in to social services for neglect unless they have snowpants, boots, hats, scarves, and mittens along with all the under wear and regular wear.
  • you give the outdoor animals the exact amount of water that they will need to drink otherwise it freezes solid
  • you only let the kids go outside to play if it warms up to -20 below or warmer
  • 10 degrees feels a whole lot warmer after this kind of cold
Here are some other fun things that we get to do when it is frigid of coffee thrown up in the air at -40 below zero, click on the image below:

Click the video links below for youtube videos of shooting a supersoaker at -40 degrees below zero.

So far it has only hit zero a couple of times.  With the holidays come the colder temperatures.  Everyone be safe out there!! Have a beautiful winter season!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Dedicated to the Sister with the Birthday in November

What I will do today is prescribe the perfect shoe for my sister.  This is my personal opinion, the best choice for work or for one of those days that inspiration for a new "project" sparkles in her eyes while she wheels off accross country with homeschoolers in tow, to an energy sustaining log home building workshop or the like.  These shoes must be durable outlasting my sisters adventure and enthusiasm.  Happy Birthday sister!

pink birthday cake

Let me describe her. Fantastic, idealistic with amazing exploits on every size scale to tackle and, believe me, you cannot out work her. She sings, she dances -which I can prove that with a video I found of her shaking her groove thing on a facebook video. She is not high self-esteemed or low self-esteemed, she is other esteemed, alwasy tending to others needs.  So this is pretty grand, finding shoes that you can wear all year doing tons of random things and always on the go.

I might say that she is a hybrid between an earth muffin and a Jesus freak with maybe a dash of the occasional "sidetracked" in there.   but that is only because she has so many kids or or the other. She produces water keffir, chicken eggs, mills her own whole grain flours, runs a small college, renovates/decorates/roofs buildings, and would earn respect from Juliette Lowe if she were still alive.  However, earth muffin may not be thte best word because muffins are baked.  My sister eats only raw food. That is her family eats only food that is uncooked, considered live, fresh from the garden, and not grazed in a feed lot.  I agree, that the lifestyle prevents disease and is extremely healthy for anyone plus a righteous decision- think about it, Adam and Eve didn't have electric Jen-Air cook tops, plug in counter top electric rotiserrie's, kitchen aid blenders or vitamixers.  They didn't die of obesity, diabetes, cancer, or COPD!  I love the whole plan, all the recipes, the boost of energy; I just have one problem...I have to manage the THREE FREEZERS OF CARIBOU/ MOOSE AND OTHER GAME MEAT in my garage.  Feeding three hungry hunters with another two growing up in the footsteps of their father and grandfather before them keep me busy frying deer steak.  I really think all these shoes listed below have earth muffin/Jesus freak quality to them ESPECIALLY knowing where the company shoe Naot is based.

Back to the raw food eating, and DO NOT confuse that with RAW meat puhleeeez!  Nonetheless, a person can still be considered a raw foodist by consuming just 75% of the diet in raw fruit, vegetables, beans, grains, and sprouts.  The other 25% can be used up at the Olive Garden, on Hostess Twinkies, or perhaps driving visiting a fast food chain restaurant for "Is that for here or to go?" meals.  My sister is SO busy, sometimes she has to do this; she is literally forced to (only on dire occasions) purchase hamburgers. On certain days of the week her schedule involves commuting and that is when I get to talk to her one on the phone.

sis:   YOU ARE KIDDING! He did what to his truck?
me:   yup... he wrecked it, icy roads today with the first snow and slid right off the road into the ditch.
sis:   Wow! It is his senior year and he has only driven his truck for 3 months!  How sad!
me:   At least he had his senior portraits taken in the truck before it was wrecked.
sis:   Does that come with any vegetables like pickles, lettuce, and mayo?
me:  What?
sis:   Mustard too!  Thank you. -Oh sorry I was just ordering, we are starving, it has been a long day.
me:   Oh, I see, where are you anyway?
sis:   Five!! That is five biggie size burgers please, not one! Mustard on three of them, mayo on the last one,  and fries with all of them! What else will the white tornado (her platinum blonde 2 year old) eat?

Other than the occaisonal sin of fast food my sis can pray, she can harmonize with the angels, clean up a small city after a hurricane, whip up an entire college staff back into shape, birth children during a natural disaster with no electricity, and move mountains. Drum roll please...................................................

She needs a shoe that requires no socks because she never wears socks.  At the most, if it is a really cold winter in L.A. (that is lower Alabama), she will don them, but not for more than a couple of weeks.  She has to have breathing room so no closed toe shoes. She needs enough cushion for towing gear and traction for keeping up with the white tornado and his sisters. Originally, I looked for an open toe mud boot, but they don't exist.

Here is what I found for :   Coming in First Place......

This is a shoe you can wear all day at the beach or class up a bit and go into the office (see the rhinestones baby!) It is a Naot Kate sandal in peacock leather.  The footbed can be replaced in these type of shoes so that meets the on the go practicality of my sis. I have read reviews that some people have worn theirs Naots for ten years!  Endurability wins the selection!  I first found them at the clogoutlet for super bargain prices.

There were some others that I seriously considered for my sister, I think they are worth mentioning.

1st runner up is the Alegria Barcelona, especially if you are walking a lot.  This California company created a ergonomic sandal for all California lifestyles.  It has a cute butterfly buckle that I really like.  I first saw these in a nursing magazine. If nurses can wear them all day, then I think I will try a pair for myself soon!

2nd runner up is the Taylor by Naot if you just have to have the toe thong and are gonna be super practical.  People with foot problems love these sandals, hey wait a minute they even have boots and a skin care line from the Dead Sea minerals.

3rd runner up is Kyra by Naot, it has classy little jewels on it.  It comes in 5 neutral colors, copper, expresso, midnight, peacock, and quartz.  Naot is a sucessful company from Isarael made to support and massage the foot, distributing all the bodyweight evenly throughout the foot. If you want more techy info on how they build their shoes click here and download the pdf files.  I thought it was very interesting.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Stories right from the mouth of a hillbilly serving time in an ER

So after the stitches were taken out and the go was given to start putting weight on the ankle, the hillbilly (still on crutches) decides to go on a date with his wife.  We saw "Red" a spy movie about what happens to agents with they retire. It is a comedy with a bunch of big names, totally worth going to see and a great one for date night especially if one of you are thinking about retiring soon. Then, pain that had started earlier that day, got out of hand. The wife took the hillbilly back to town, at midnight, to the ER where nothing could be found to cause the pain. Ice, elevate, motrin, call if it gets worse.

Next night. GREAT PAIN!!! Wife takes hillbilly back to the ER. After the triage nurse takes us to a room my dear 'ol hillbilly starts nearly climbing the walls in pain and I begin to think he is about to give birth to something or go insane.  

Hillbilly says to the phlebotomist: "Don't EVER get married, it is just nor worth it dude, it is way way way too expensive! It's okay if you poke me in my arm, no pain is worse than this ankle pain!"

Hillbilly says to the wife: "Christy, no offense to you at all but....."

Hilbilly to the phlebotomist: "I would rather 20 years ago if I had just kept her all this time as my girlfriend..."

Phlebotomist: "I am planning on being single forever sir, even before your advice but thanks."

Me: thinking... I know the phlebotomist has no idea that I birthed 5 children of the hillbilly's naturally, yes that's right and the last one was near 12 pounds, I also tiled an entire new house with a broken arm in a cast alone, babysat the hillbilly while he got his wisdom teeth out screaming in delirium for a milkshake from McDonalds AND nursed him with his dry socket, and let's not forget the time he took ME out in a little raft in the port of Valdez next to the oil tankers at high tide.  The number one scariest event in my life.... I thought I would never see anyone alive again that day, that my children had lost their parents and I would just be killer whale food. Then I say to them "Hmmm, no comment, but he is in a lot of pain."

I am sure my hillbilly husband was not in his right or best mind but I was contemplating divorcing him anyway, just so I can really be his dreamy girlfriend.  Besides my name on facebook already reflects only my maiden name, that's grounds right there, right? It has just occurred to me that I have never properly given him his indian name. Here it goes...Shoots Himself In The Foot.

Another short story during delirium...

After 3 agonizing hours in the ER (with no pain meds but they keep telling us that they are coming right away), we begin to wonder if the staff think that he is faking the blinding pain. They run tests.  The tests show nothing.  Every person that came into contact with us, the doctor, the nurse, the triage nurse the phlebotomist, the medtech, the nurse that gives drugs, the PA assistant to the Ortho doc, and the other lady dressed up as a cat that kept saying "meow", all agreed that this pain was unbearable that the drugs were coming soon. While we waited we heard laughter and talking, almost merrymaking behind the closed door.  It happened to be Halloween weekend you know, a crazy time to be in an ER with all the staff dressed up. As four hours pass, we waited and Shoots Himself In The Foot Began to tell me this story. 

     "I didn't wash my hands for twenty years you know. When I was a boy living off Hogeye Creek in the back woods I trapped furs, I ran hounds after coons, and lived life everyday on that snake infested creekbed. Once, I remember cutting up a stinky old coon.  A few hours later I got the chills and went delirious.  I hallucinated about all kinds of things that weren't true at all.  My whole body radiated pain all over.  I almost died had I not gotten to the doctor in time.  This here is one of them there times, I just might die. I am telling you this is serious. something is really really wrong in a big way and they need to fix it quick!"

     He later had told the doctor that he had only been wearing shoes for only about 20 years, that is less than half of his life......people wouldn't have so many problems with their feet if they went without them more often. 

     The hillbilly cracks me up everyday.  I am sure that we will stay married for life, for better or for ER experiences, and in one week it will be our 22nd year anniversary.  And by the way.....while in the hospital the hillbilly remembered to vote!  Of course it won't be counted for another month....but hey, he is a patriotic hillbilly with an indian name.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Oh DEAR!!!! What did genetics give me! mom will understand this because it is about dishes.

           I cannot contain the excitement that I feel right now after finding a new ceramic by surfing the internet.  Let me back up a  little.  I am doing research on my next pottery assignment.  It started out as one thought, a drawing, then, it totally morphed into a platter instead of a bowl.  I talked to my sister about it it and VWalah I know have a for sure vision and orders from my family that want them!  Wait!  I haven’t EVEN touched the raw clay yet. 

The assignment:  Make a food service dish that will display and enhance the food to be brought to the SCAG Thanksgiving potluck.  

          SCAG stands for students ceramic arts guild. Picking the type of food for my project was easy!  My family’s traditional meal since growing up overseas on an Aramco compound, Ras Tanura, is a cups or kabsa for Thanksgiving and for Christmas.  We cover the floor with sheets and all eat the meal sitting on the floor surrounding 5 huge four foot wide platters. I think about 5-10 people can fit around one platter.  The meal consists of meat, rice, tabouleh and a sauce with other condiments such as cut cucumber and lemons.  My favorite is the Tabouleh, and usually I help to create it. Tabouleh is a middle eastern salad with cracked bulgar, diced fresh parsely, dice tomatoes, cukes, lettuce, onions, and a dressing of lemon juice, olive oil and spices. I swear I could OD on this stuff. 

          About my project....I have so many ideas, geometrical designs, even phrases beautifully written in Arabic to adorn my theoretical vessel with and hours researching exactly what I want. It should display my tabouleh with a dish in the middle for the sauce. I hope it turns out well.....and suddenly....while looking through images on the net I accidentally encountered …..POLISH POTTERY!!  It totally made my heart race I am loved every shade of blue and all the exquisite perfectly repeated designs in every bowl and every plate!  Most polish pottery is in my favorite shade....BLUE! Finding so much of it made me feel like I was cookie monster at a cookie swap.  I loved those dishes!  I love those dishes, and I will love thoses dishes into the future!  I think this covers all the verb tenses.... Furthermore, I really love antique dishes, I love stoneware, I love new dishes, I love polish, I love blue, I love bright, moroccoan and greek!!  I love the bronze age, I love it all!! This is sounding almost seusical, maybe I am a stoneware dish geek!

Breathing deeply now……..breathing deeply…….breathing deep.

          Here is a picture of my latest unfinished assignment.  It is a Mycenaen replica.  I have so much respect for handmade pottery now, it is beyond belief how they created such vessels. This pot is so big it bends the bat of hardboard holding it.  Also, I have applied terra sigillata which is a way of making the vessel look a bit glossy and finished, like an ancient glaze  Here is my write up on the history behind the piece, I thought it was interesting. Yesterday I made a lid for it, I actually plan on using this huge vessel to store food stuff in. 

Pottery can play an integral part in the discovery and aid in further study of ancient civilizations. Up until 1870, Mycenae, was a city that existed only in the minds of Greek legends and written about in the poetry of Homer. Heinrich Schliemann, an amateur archaeologist, set out to find the city written about in Homers Iliad, using only the well known objects from prominent places in the writing. Schliemann found the remains of what was once the strongest city in a thriving network of city states. Mycenae was rich in trade and ruled by royal monarchs supported by a stalwart military. The types of people that lived in Mycenae, which is about 56 miles south west of Athens, were priests, soldiers, artisans, serfs, slaves, merchants, and bureaucrats. The findings of the archaeological digs proved that the Mycenaens kept impeccable records. For hundreds of years Mycenae was a thriving city. Because of the Mycenaen pottery that is scattered all over the Mediterranean, it can be assumed that Mycenaens traveled quite a distance for trade. Mycenae existed from 1900 B.C. and disappeared by 1125 B.C. Theories of the city’s collapse include natural disasters, city wide fires, or climate change as to the cause.  Mycenaen pottery has been found in Egypt and Italy and artifacts as far away as Germany. Greek pottery styles of intricate images with a dark and light contrast post date the Mycenaen era.  Mycenaen pottery usually appears unglazed, banded, or with plant and marine life images.  A hidden past was uncovered when the amateur archaeologist, Heinrich Schliemann discovered the legendary Mycenae through the writings of Homer.

I love this unearthed octopot from the octopus!  In order to make an exact replica, pictures were taken to kinkos to blow up the image to at least 20 inches tall or more.  Then the outline of half the pot was traced and cut out onto poster board.  This was to be used as a gauge to make it accurate.  I will have to say it was extrememly difficult to do.  Not to mention that the Mycenaen pots were usually a meater in heighth, mine ended up being only 3 feet tall. 

This post just needs to end for now, for many reasons, but I can't wait to tell you about taking two 10 year olds to the ceramics studio and what that has to do with Yo Gabba Gabba!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

boots in places you never thought you'd see them

Bogs - Fern Mid

I am so inspired to shop for boots! Especially after my hunny's experience at the army hospital's ortho-surgical unit. Of course being an Allied Health pre-nursing student I had to ask the doc and everyone I met all kinds of questions not really related to my husband's surgery like, "do you HAVE to wear hospital scrubs or can you wear your own?", I was thinking of my favorite medical drama, Mercy, that was cancelled last year along with all the cute flowery scrubs the nurses wore. Duh! (that is everyday vocabulary borrowed from my ten year old).....Of course everyone in surgery wears the same disinfected scrubs that have been commercially washed according to hospital standards to destroy all germs, pathogens, and microbes. I am really curious now as to exactly what detergent the army hospital actually uses.

The most interesting thing I noticed was when the nurse came into our area, which is everybody else's area too, only separated by dividing curtains.  She asked questions like, "so, do you know what is happening today?", "you understand it is the right ankle?", "what is your name?" etc.  I couldn't keep from noticing her attire: surgical cap, hospital scrubs, and MUD BOOTS! WTH??  Really, REALLY? I was looking sideways at my husband screaming with my eyes and pointing with my glances, do you see that!!!!!  I bet you can imagine what I mean.  It is like when you are trying to talk to someone, about another someone, right in front of the other someone, trying to get the person to look at something certain without them knowing!

 I swear if you are from chicken country you can relate with my next statement.  I pinky SWEAR, the only thing missing on the nurses attire was the hair net or she would have been a chicken plant worker in north west Arkansas. Yes,  I said chicken plant, if you have ever been to one you are now thinking bodily parts and pieces of small fowl that will eventually reach your grocery store.  This is what made my husband and I think about the it so deep in bodily parts and pieces that the medical team needs mud boots?

When a person is about to have outpatient surgery performed, about a million people come by to to check things off their list right before they knock you out.  Then, the CRNA or nurse anesthetist, who eventually does the knocking out, came in and guess what?  She ALSO had on mud boots!!!  This just seemed outrageous to me. I got ready to open my mouth to ask more questions as my hunny's head shook and he rested it in his hands, I asked, "Why are you wearing rubber boots because the only thing we could think of was the amount of possible blood in the OR (that is grays anatomy talk for operating room) and do you watch medical dramas because we watch all of them".

Here's the goods:  the doc has never seen a medical drama....EVER. The CRNA watches all the popular shows and swears that the procedure that we saw last night on Gray's Anatomy won't be performed on my husbands fibula.  She informed us that medical dramas aren't real, they are mostly all fantasy. We also found out that the rubber boots are to keep dry from the huge amount of water that is used to irrigate the area being worked on in ortho-surgeries. It keeps the area open and makes surgery easier, she said.

Later the next day, while checking my mail at the post office and throwing away all the, whats the word for snail mail spam......oh yah,  JUNK MAIL!  I realize I CANNOT throw away the Cabelas catalog until #1 gives the okay.  So I glance through it, and find the most amazing mud boots, BOGS! Of course they don't carry my size, because my feet are so large. I race back to the house to finds these Bogs online. I decided that I really need these boots too, for one they are also cold weather boots, two- break up season really sneaks up real quick, three- when  visiting family you just never know when there will be a flash flood, AND who knows, one day I may be an ortho-surgical nurse!

I just have to decide if I like Paisley Mids or Fern Mids better.

Note to chicken plant workers:  I have no issues with employment of any sort, really, expecially in this recession, I may be looking for a job soon!

Bogs - Classic Mid Paisley

Monday, October 11, 2010

Sidetracked...........................who me?

This is a rant, and it made me feel good.  It is funny to me because this was my very first post not associated with ENGLISH class.  However, I thought I posted it........I didn't.  So here it is.  I think other people can relate.

My day today.....get off work at 8am...then sleep, wake up at the crack of noon and try to find myself again.

After several cups of coffee and thinking about what types of thing NEED to be done I watch an Israeli foreign film. REally really, I want to live in a decent, clean and organzied house. It seems realy simple. Where to start. Watching t.v. does not help AT ALL!

I get distracted very easy.  This is basically a list of all the things that seem more important than doing dishes.

I went for a ride in my son's new mitzubishi. He bought me Thai food. I came home and checked emails, cut and hung my nearly frozen tomatoes, dug potatoes, changed diapers, kept the wood stove going and looked at the kitchen in it's disarray. Then I decided to grease and clean the sliding glass door tracking.
Later, I decided to refresh my sentsy thing in the kitchen. Then I got all the girl scout craft items off the floor in the kitchen, that was 5 gallons of beads, paint, papers, wire, ribbon, and all kinds of recycled materials.
I can be a great gs leader, construct all kinds of messenger bags out of recycled fused grocery bags, lead a team of Girls up a mountain, take a 2 year old shopping at a grocery store.
I can shoot  a camera and a rifle, skin and butcher a moose, raise a mighty garden and process all the food, get all A's in my pre-nursing classes but I CANNOT SEEM TO GET MY KITCHEN CLEAN.


Sambuza Runza!!!! A recipe if you call it that...............

This is a recipe that I got from a friend here in Alaska. She got it from her mother in law.  I think we have both made major changes to it to suit our tastes and what our families will actually eat.  My house, full of healthy appetites, have been bugging me all year to make them.  Today seemed to be the day since they are very inexpensive (I am always budgeting), I happen to have 1.2 gallons of fermented kraut, and I literally have 3.5 freezers full of moose and caribou due to the successful hunters that live here.

Traditionally the Runza comes from Germany.  It is a hot meat filled bread pocket with cabbage and onions.  My friend always adds cheddar cheese to hers.  Today, I am flavoring the meat with middle eastern spices and parsley to resemble a sambuza, the deep fried, triangular, meat pocket found at the snack bar in Ras Tanura, Saudi Arabia, where I grew up.


  1. your favorite bread or dinner roll recipe
  2. sauer kraut or lightly sauteed shredded cabbage (see posted link to make your own)
  3. ground beef, moose, caribou or anything ground

You might have noticed by now that I do not measure anything much.  I usually make the dough to fit my largest bowl or just make a double recipe for my family of 7.  While the dough is rising I cook the ground meat and season with anything.  Salt and pepper works but today I used Bazhaar liberally and dried parsley flakes, sea salt, pepper, and garlic to taste. Bazhaar is a middle eastern spice that is made from a mixture of 7 other spices, if you have ever had cupsa and eaten on the floor then you are craving it now. 

Add onions to taste into the meat mixture.

Next, punch down your dough and while waiting the 10 minutes for it to rest, drain your sauer kraut in a colander.

My kraut is made from cabbage, broccoli, turnips, zuchini, and carrots from my garden.  I watched youtube videos to learn how.

 Here is a cabbage and a turnip from my garden before they were lacto fermented.

Next, divide dough into pieces until you have pieces a little larger than a golf ball.  In a double recipe I got 18 of these.

Roll out your lump of dough til it is about the size of a dinner plate, shape doesn't matter. My dough is 100% whole wheat and still rolls out perfectly!

Use plenty of flour to prevent from sticking.
Next add a scoop of sauerkraut.  I actually measured since I made so many and wanted them to all be the exact same size. My scoop was half a cup but I packed it overflowing.

I flatten this out a bit and then add two thirds a cup of cooked ground meat on top.

The next part is easy, just folding it closed.  If you want cheese this is the best time to add it, right before you start folding.

Fold opposite sides toward each other.

I make these squarish.  It is not important to seal shut.  You can let them rise a little before you bake but I just put them right in the oven folded side down.

Bake long enough so that they brown on top in a 350 degree oven.  You can butter the tops and eat with bleu cheese dressing or ranch.  When cooled I like to wrap the extras in foil and freeze for lunches.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Peanut Brittle and Getting Older (Golden Girl Style)

If you read the previous post and were wondering....the peanut brittle turned out so well that it was instantly inhaled by everyone. I ate it until I had visions of trying to explain to Dr. Hostager why I would be visiting his dental office again this year!! I even stocked up on peanuts so that on the next sunny day, we will do it again while doubling the recipe.


While texting back and forth today with my sister I had a scary mental image of what my two sisters and I may look like when we are old. I guess it was like a flash forward into the future. It got me wondering. Will we be fashionably out of date and continally wear antiquated styles we learned in the 80's, 90's, 00's, and 10's? Will we resemble the "Golden Girls" on t.v.? Will we be looked at as ancient in the same way we see polyester of yesteryear and beehive hairdo's? Which one of us will always try to stay young and edgy adopting all the new fads and fashions possibly ruining the look with wrinkles,saggy skin and gray hair. More important.....who will go all gray first? Who will stop coloring their hair first? I already struggle with the "want to look hot" syndrome of lower 'than you should go' rise jeans that really don't look so hot after birthing 5 kids and sporting that muffin top I am not too proud of. Am I really going down this path? Really?

The sad part is that I am already making the transition in comfort wear styles. Especially in the shoe department. Sexy can have drastic immediate affects that are positive however, it can also cost a person later. Take for instance my last overdue date with my husband. I bought THE SEXIEST PLATFORMS ON THE PLANET for my size (yes, I had to go to the big girl store to get them) just for this date. I was immediately elevated to the heighth of my 6'2" husband and possibly higher. The effect was a success. I felt different, I acted all happy and sweet, and I walked a whole heck of a lot slower!!!

Even though I had feelings of saucy sexiness, my radar was sensing that my husband did not want to be seen with me... in public... with these shoes on. It could just be my own insecurity, I could be way off, or it could be

A. my husband doesn't want anyone else looking at HIS wife because "I'm too sexy" in my shoes. -greedy hoarding type thoughts


B. my husband doesn't want anyone to be a witness when I fall from this considerable height and squash a little person because it would embarrass him and we could possibly be sued for hurting people because of my sexy shoes!

Anyway, the next day the balls of my feet were bruised and my calves felt like I had paid a trainer at the gym for a 10 hour calf workout. The only thing that touched my feet were my snuggly soft pink slippers that son #2 got me for Christmas last year......must have known something in advance. I only wore the heels for 45 minutes!!!!! REalLy!!

Words of Wisdom to Women

Every once in a while it is good to change things up, even trying spiky 6 inch platform sexy shoes because it will make all the comfy shoes in the world feel so much more....well, COMFIER!

My Fav Blogs for now.....send me your favs! - she makes me laugh, found this by accident. - nostalgic stories about my daddy or my momma, love it! -wildly creative how to's and artwork by an amazing lady, I like her recycling strategies. -because we need to laugh at least once a day.
once a month mom - lots of creative recipes for mass producing meals.

peace out my friends!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Movies I like and Grannie's Peanut Brittle

Before I get into talking about my reviews of this weeks funny/ quirky movies, my son brought to my attention that there are two types of pancake makers in the world. No matter what type a person is, if the batter is good, then the pancakes will be great. Son #1 is a liberal pancake maker, only two of them will fit on my huge griddle. Here are at least three reasons why I am a conservative pancake maker:

#1. I mass produce. I want to save time in the future (with so many mouths to feed) therefore I quadruple the recipe. When they are finished and cooled I later freeze/hide the extras. This is equivalent to -3X of making breakfast
next week.......brilliant!

#2. In conservative pancaking styles, there are many more pancakes produced at the same time because each whole wheat, flax infested, blueberry buttermilk pancake with pecans is smaller in size. I love to make them hearty too.

#3. More area on the griddle is being used to cook the pancakes so that means overall less cooking, flipping, and standing time in the kitchen. Yay!


I'd like to watch the whole "Sunny With A Chance Of Meatballs" from the beginning to count how many other fliks it pokes fun of. I woke up late this Saturday morning, groped my way to the coffee pot, and then plopped down on the couch to find everyone, even the two year old, glued to the tube. I was instantly as absorbed as everyone else was to the huge flat screen images of the computer animated life of a geniously geeky teenage inventor, Flint, voted last years movie of America- my 10 year old tells me. Flint is very VERY awkward and wants to make his town happy but destroys it instead with his inventions.

This movie spoofs Armageddon, The Abyss, Titan AE, Resident Evil (so I am told), 2012, the one with huge cyclones and weather patterns that will destroy the earth, Jimmy Neutron, Chicken Little and many more and that was counting just from the last 15 minutes. Because of one of the final scenes of Flint nearly dying from a passing through a death hole with the sharp peanut brittle shards spewing from all sides, my family is going to experience creating peanut brittle today, after I restock my pantry. We even rang up GrandPa for tips and to find out if it has to be sunny or cloudy to make the brittle, Grannie style!!! Grannie always said it had to be sunny or brittle won't turn out.

The other movie that is fun to watch is "Screen Door Jesus" because everyone with any kind of faith at all will find themselves somewhere as somebody in this movie. It pokes fun at many sects of the Christian faith. What is funny is that it is very hard to admit out loud which character you think fits yourself. My husband and I watched and then pointed at each other and asked "Which one are you?" as we lied to each other about who we thought we were. It is really funny and for adults only. Wait, he NEVER told me which character he felt like the most!

To ponder:

Why does a ten year old 5th grade girl think that if you turn on a vacuum for about 60 seconds, then sit down in a chair to play with string, that it deserves the check off mark of finishing the "vacuum living room" on the chore list?

Random important issues:

This may come as a surprise to many people but forks and spoons in MY universe do not fit in the flatware tray UNLESS the bigger ones point down and the smaller ones point up. I only expect my mother to understand this.

I'll post pictures of the peanut brittle if it turns out.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Garden Harvest Dinner

What a great idea! Get together with friends and everyone bring a dish from your harvested garden. There was Italian spiced tomato soup, pumpkin pie, zuchini bread, strawberries, grilled salmon and more. I brought a half gallon jar of my garden Kraut 5 weeks into fermenting process. Because it is made at home and has never been heated and canned there are all kinds of healthy creatures as a double bonus for a healthy gut! It is tangy, a bit different from ordinary cabbage kraut and very good for you. I think I like it most because I have eaten so much bad food lately......I mean good food, but bad for you- like Grechens Confections turtles and soft chewy caramels, fudge and chocolate dipped pretzel sticks!!!

Why! Oh why did I eat the whole bag that should have lasted an entire year!!! Let me back track just a bit. I lead this group of 10 and 11 year old girls in all sort of crazy activities, like Red Cross First Aid training, camping in September when it is 30 degrees at night and the dew freezes on your tent, after school meetings where nearly all of them giggle til they fart and then roll on the floor laughing more, and actual badge earning types of things such as finding your way with a compass to a pile of snicker bars in the middle of the woods in which will never be found because the pesky squirrels pillaged them off to their treetop hideouts before our compass and trail signs led us to them. So because of all this crazy service to scouts I was given a bag of treats from a mother who...OWNS A CONFECTIONARY!! ...BLESS HER SOUL!

Previously I had sworn off sugar until I achieve a desirable weight and fit into my pre-pregnancy #3 clothes. That means that I don't care to be the waif that I was before the birth of the first 2 kids which is over 19 or so years ago. I am settling for the third child, strike that, pre-prego #4 will be good enough! Grechen you are amazing!!

Garden clubs are nice because you always learn something new, like how to store fresh herbs so they last longer, or storing tuberous and non-tuberous begonia bulbs and dahlia bulbs? Well that was the topic at the harvest party. I have amazing friends with delicious food and many with handy info.....thanx friends!

Interesting, but more interesting to me is the fact that the last four chapters in the book that I read immediately after the harvest party, "Earthly Treasures" another historical fictions read by Phillippa Gregory, was about purchasing bulbuous flowers all over Europe for the gardens of the Lords in King James' England of the 1600's. It seems that unfamiliar topics of interest seem to sprout themselves to the intellect in clusters near about the same time. I want to see England's gardens now.

Got Bulbs?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

What I Wish I Could Have Done Different

This is a difficult prompt for my blog for many reasons. Research papers are hard to begin with, time consuming, and it is extremely difficult to jump in and work on something huge in an hour here or there like in other classes.

Besides all the reasons that research papers are hard, who really knows how to do them? What order? If I had a list of everything to do and in what order it would be easy. That is what this English class did for me. By the end of the course I realized that each lesson was a chunk in the final major project. It shortened the process by grouping it into chunks. Taking on each chunk was was feasible. I couldn't have made it any easier. In the end the paper really came together quickly, very surprising to me actually; even though I write most the time like Yoda speaks, there is some grammar rule that is always backwards. I really don't know what I could have done different to be honest.

What I will do is go back through all the lessons and make a list. The list will be called EMERGENCY INFO FOR FUTURE RESEARCH PAPERS and will have numbers from one-to like fourteen with instructions of exactly what to do before continuing. I work well with lists so this will be a good thing to always have on file. Which makes me wonder how many research papers I will actually have to do for my 2 year degree, my 4 year degree and then my masters. The thought is making me want to eat.......popcorn, ice cream and blueberries and pie...any kind of pie. It isn't helping that I am drinking a stress relief magnesium drink right now.

To end this blog, I wouldn't have done anything different because if I didn't have this class to guide me through the process then my paper would be a the last one was in Psychology 101. However, once my blood pressure was down again from writing the paper on the teenage brain, I thought that I had done a super duper job. Looking back, and that is figuratively, I AM NOT ACTUALLY GOING to reread that paper, I think that I would scrap the whole project and cry, on my first paper that is, not the one I JUST did for English 111.

Peace out, I must leave, people are knocking at my door.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My Consultation

It all began with going to my first Chemistry class on Tuesday- after getting four people up and dressed, lunches packed, off to school, the bus stop, plucking my eyebrows, and driving 30 minutes in the wrong direction to take the cutest terrorist to daycare. Then another 45 minute drive to school in which I parked at the lower lot to catch the gold shuttle bus to the Nat Sci building.

While riding the shuttle up the hill I called The Writing Center and made an appointment with the writing center up at Gruehning, that wasn't hard at all, really it wasn't. I really need to finish this English class before all the other Chemistry and Biology homework starts to waterfall into my life so when I heard that there was no lab for Tuesday, I dropped in unannounced to The Writing Center disregarding my appointment the next day. I really really really want English to be over at this point and am willing to buy more coffee to keep myself at it.

I hiked up 5 flights of stairs, figuring I can lose some calories too, to the meet three lonely expert English persons suffering from lack of activity. School JUST started, I am sure they were not expecting someone with a nearly completed research paper to walk in the first day of school. They were nearly fighting over me, well kinda. Ian C. won. This is cool, someone you can hand your assignment over to, to read over, and hand it back and say "nice"...NOT!!

Ian asked me what my assignment was, what type of writing project, what did I think I needed the most help with. Then he began reading while I found the water fountain. I really hiked 5 flights of stairs. He read half and then we began to discuss the correct way to make web citations. We had a discussion with a few other English expert fellows that were consulted because Ian wanted pro backup. I hated to disturb their intellectual dialogue on the 80's transformers, storm and sunbot known to have special UV powers but they were ecstatic to join the consultation. We all learned how to properly make unpaginated web references in a research paper. Cool.

The next part was even better because that previous part, I knew for sure that stuff was wrong. After reading half the paper and complementing my research and two pages of citations, Ian was a little unclear on some of my points, even though I pointed them out to him. He gave me some really good ideas on how to make my points stronger, how to leave one part and go onto the next part stronger. Like making a big entrance everytime someone comes in the door. That was my analogy not his.

We worked on transitions and where I needed more of them. I told him that this was my suckiest part and he disagreed and said that this was the time to work on this part. He said writing is a process and I am still in the process of creating the research paper. (Really without the consultation I was ready to just send it in!) I have put in lots of time on this project, sometimes with tears, sometimes with bursts of tantrums-my husband will celebrate for sure when English 111 is over- and mostly with a lack of sleep.

The last part. Ian suggested that I change up the introduction and gave me reasons why which I will not say here in my blog. It sounded reasonable to me. I will try it.....tomorrow! Rewriting, fine tuning, and editing will make tomorrow a busy day and a great day to end chapter 14.

For any writing assignment due, before it is due, go see Ian or some other unbusy English person expert at UAF on the 8th floor of the Gruening Building for some advice. They are really helpful and nice even when you put yourself down.

Now go eat some ice cream! I know that ice cream has nothing to do with the blog and neither does the fact that all those stairs that I hiked didn't help get me to 10,000 steps on Tuesday.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Summarizing Reading

I feel like a pretty lame summarizer. I am a plain to the point type of person that probably writes in that manner, I don't like to write if there is not a direct compensation in some way personally, and I think I sometimes miss the point totally and can interpret things really wrong at times.

If I were to get paid to do this I would need to really figure out how to increase my skills greatly. I read quite a bit therefore I know what good writing is and therefore I don't think that I am a creative enough writer to make it really interesting, even while summarizing. I can give a basic overview if that is interesting enough, just giving the main points. Sounds easy enough yet I know that I am not a writer, I don't have things floating in my head that are clever and that need to be written down. I must wonder though, how did Virginia Wolf get so clever at writing?

I do understand that effective communication is necessary in life, business and even in Girl Scout meetings with eight preteens in attendance. To put it bluntly, the business of writing is critically important especially in many professional fields. Therefore, if it helps my sales in a business, or my career as a nurse, or a researcher, then I will painstakingly do my best. One thing that comes a bit easier to me is creating simple ads and flyers. Sometimes I can write out things to help out my friends, editing, or even help overcome a software issue. Helping a friend is compensation, doing something nice for someone else. It doesn't mean that I am good at it, just because someone wanted my advice or needed my help. I am sure most people in the world better at writing than me; many of them still in grade school!

It is sometimes like a bad joke that my Cuban/German American friend tells me. It takes me a week to get the punch line if I ever get it at all, not sure if it is his accent or the meaning of the joke. Or like the time I tried to help my daughter in interpret a poem in high school. I told her exactly what I thought about the poem after studying it for half an hour. I thought it was totally obscene, morbid and immodest. Turned out she googled the poem got some others advice, and interpreted it herself quite well. She rejected everything I had to say and got a good grade. It turned out that I was totally off base and nowhere near the enigmatic meaning of the dark poem. My impression was very far wrong and I went further by making it political. I realize I do this, like when I sing the wrong words to songs on the radio. It's the way I hear it though. I misunderstand things all the time, that is why summarizing can be difficult for me.

So anyway, when I have to summarize something, especially something that will hopefully get me and "A" in a class, it really helps me to understand what I read better even though I hate doing it. I don't write creatively, especially if there is not much in it for me, I am blunt, and hopefully I don't get the content all wrong when I am summarizing. However, if I summarize by writing, I usually get the content less wrong, I helps me read better. Let me summarize, I hate to write but I do what I have to; it makes me better.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

August Post

Where did August go? August is the time that the garden harvest comes in and all Summer activities cease. August is time to ready for hunting season, make room for visitors, and get the kids off to school.

My plans didn't go as expected at all. First of all, only one summer class finished on time. Finishing THAT class took away an entire week of my life in the hottest nicest weather we have had all year. Add to it over 20 squash and zuchini's ripening everyday from my garden. I am like my grandmother, I can't let anything go to waste.

After the class was over and I put off my English class for a few weeks I began to give away squash and find canning recipes. Then I got called in to work for a week and go to court for a son that ended up in jail. I have a crazy life. Wearing my pedometer, I learned that every day that I went to work I walked over 16 miles with over half of that pushing heavy equipment.

Another week goes by and I can't remember if I still have kids and who is diapering them while I can/pickle/preserve 54 jars of three types of zuchini/squash relish and ferment 3 gallons of vegetable sauerkraut. The freezer fills as the days roll by and my special hunt for cow moose begins.

My husband feels that it is his honorable duty to scout and guide me to the perfect cow moose everyday after work for hours and hours AND on the weekends til I just want to cry. I day or two here and there is fine, but EVERY DAY!! I yearn to pick all the lowbush berries that we pass on our tromps through the woods while I look alert and aware of any movements with floppy ears. I point out signs in the wet tundra of split hoof prints. I also fill my water bottle with the ripened cranberries to take home for a chocolate zuchini cranberry loaf.

Company comes just as the frost arrives. Thanks goodness my squash were nipped first because I can't eat any more yellow squash and eggs on tortillas for breakfast! My garden is nearly finished except for the potatoes and cauliflower. I still have pumpkins that I baby every single day, I cover them up at night and uncover and water them in the day. I go outside before bedtime and just look at them, willing them to live and grow for a few more days while my cucumbers and tomatos grow in the warmth of the greenhouse.

Two nights ago I completed my first kill; moose season is over for me, harvest is near complete, one class is over, my pay check is in the mail,the kids have transitioned into school, the hunters are fed, the freezer and pantry is full...where did August go?

If I could just finish English by the time this extension is up I would be able to relax for a second....and then start all over again!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Why AM I Feeling Threatened By This Research Paper?

Actually I am not feeling threatened. I don't have time to be threatened. Every two or so days something major happens to me to pause my studies, so that I don't even think about it. Like losing the diaper bag on a trip and losing all the 2 years old clothes, or having my daughter get proposed to and now I am in the middle of planning the entire wedding because she is off at school, or how about 2 nights ago when my son was cutting metal BAREFOOT with a power tool with a spinning disc called a grinder? Instead of studying planned a 5 hour block in order to do so, I took my son to the ER to sew up the 3 lacerations on the top of his foot. I guess I just wish I had the time to get threatened.

I like the fact that the instructor has drawn this out over seven lessons. That is amazing. Usually you just get, "due by such and such date" and I start really freaking out 1.5 weeks before by not sleeping, drinking too much coffee, screaming at my kids, like they even know what a research paper is. However, they will probably be so shell shocked by my previous attempts at research papers that when they hear the term "Research Paper" in one of their own college classes, they will probably run off to Indonesia as a missionary and never return to the western world. I would like to see my grandkids someday so therefore I refuse to feel threatened, it is not allowed. Only one part is due at a time, I am so very pleased with that; I'm good. I hope this was a good enough explanation because I am late for church!

What Do I Need Outside Help With?

I am sure that I would need help with everything because writing is so difficult for me. I am terribly slow at research. I cannot seem to find much of exactly what I am looking for. I seem to hit road blocks along the way that stops me from accessing the information that I find. I try to search the right databases but once I get there I certainly don't find much. I think the content of what my paper is about is difficult to research because alternative methods are not really scientifically studied unless the therapy is in a supplement form which the FDA has an interest to find out if the product is safe. Other treatments may work miracles for many people, however, they do so well with a majority of the people that utilize them yet are not regulated by the government. Therefore, most of the time they go over looked. It may just be that science is uninterested in studying the effects of time tested therapies. Research is harder to find on alternate therapies. Mostly what a person finds is millions of testimonials, which can be biased. When dealing with health and nutrition research studies in my personal opinion are more difficult to come by instead of drugs that have numerous studies before they are released to the public.

What Else Do I Still Need To Do?

So much really needs to be done on this research paper. I have barely scratched the surface actually. I have my draft to begin, more research to do to fill in the blanks, draft more, and then revise for the final paper. I can see how creating a working bibliography with annotations is very helpful. The last research paper I did for Psychology had me in tears because I had absolutely no method, no rhyme or reason to my end product. Each step I am doing is still painful yet ordered and organized. With notes summarizing each work, I will quickly be able to find information instead of running around in circles, wasting time looking from the same source again.

Friday, July 16, 2010

lesson 8 prompt 2

Well this is pretty lame because I couldnt find many articles on lupus WITH an image that was trying to persuade me of something related to my research paper on lupus. What I did find on the New York Times website by Andrea Peirce, was the article, Uncovering the Mysteries of Immunity and of Lupus. The image in the article shows healthy and antinuclear antibodies associated with the disease lupus. The only thing the image really does is show readers that lupus can be diagnosed by a blood test. There is good information on the disease in this article. It makes the disease seem less intimidating and is informative. If you are seeking information or an informative picture, look here:

Lesson 8 responding to Advertising and Violence

The strongest argument in this article is that sex used in advertising is dehumanizing and objectifying especially for women. Companies display advertisements that grabs peoples attention by images that are hurtful to women and violent to women which is a truth we all know about. Violent crimes against women committed by men are prolific in American culture. Take for instance the Calvin Klein ad for a perfume displaying a nude, adolescent girl lying stomach on a sofa, gripping one side. In extremely faint letter in the background you read Obsession for men. It makes one think, is that really the name of the perfume or is a submissive, nude girl looking like she is ready to be dominated or assaulted really the obsession of men? Aadvertising like this makes is seem like pedophilia is mainstream in our country and girls are just objects. Advertising sexually explicit material doesn't cause the crime but it takes it one step in the wrong direction.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

blog for lesson 7

My audience in the lesson 7 essay about Girl Scouting was directed at Troop Leaders. The thesis was that councils across the nation are changing the curriculum to keep up with the times, adding edgy new characters to the Journey book, yet it will not change the focus of Girl Scouting in America. I gave 3 supporting reasons behind why leaders would wan to consider trying out the curriculum and the reason behind the council push. I think that some leaders could be swayed because of the research that I did and that I didn't report on peoples "feelings" and all the "hype" out there.

The first reason assures leaders that the program is the same just more upbeat. The times we live in are different that when leaders were girl scouts they realize this and many girls come to meetings with cell phones and gadgets once not available to kids. There is a new lingo and new problems in the world that we face. It is hard to face the problems of today with girl scouting of yesteryear. The principles are still the same, ceremonies are still the same, some of the workbooks are a little different.

The second reason adding edgy characters to the new books is a fun way to make girl scouting popular again and overcome the fact that girls drop out because they still want to be cool and not embarrassed of scouting. I think that leaders would value this because it is no fun teaching a group of girls new activities when they don't want to be there and are not excited about it. Girl Scouting ultimately needs to be fun.

Third understanding the intention that the new Journey program is only adding to what we have makes sense. It doesn't replace any badge book or handbook. In fact it is a great way to start off the girl scouting year or introduce new girls into the troop even more it is a great way for a new troop leader to get started. It is an overall introduction to girl scouting. Leaders may totally omit it or use it at their own convenience. It is just a tool for leaders. Leaders make or break their meetings by using the tools available, guiding activities that the girls want to do and by having fun.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Are 16 Year Olds Really Prepared for the Road?

Are sixteen year old children prepared to drive on American roads? Because of their lack of experience, the fact that a very small portion of teens today actually take the driver education course, and because teens frontal lobes do not completely develop until their early twenties are the main reasons why teens cars explode see fig. 1. Since teens have not experienced navigating, unfamiliar or familiar territory, they are rarely very sure of where they are going. This creates very a hazardous situation in which a teen makes hasty decisions while driving. Very few teens take the Driver's Education class in their schools for various reasons. The cost usually starts at $500 and it is hard to fit another class in a high school schedule with all the requirements. Critical decision making skills are difficult for teens anyway because the last part of the brain to fully mature is the frontal lobe. Teens can make rash, and risky decisions or not focus on obvious matters because of brain immaturity. This is another reason for high alcohol and drug abuse, high accident rates, and even the highest insurance rates among teenage drivers. There are many reasons why teens are unprepared for our roads; be on the look out and be patient with them.

Responding to the Cartoon on page 227

Entrance into any internet chat room is dangerous.
Like a naive and innocent child all users that enter the chat room portal are putting themselves at risk, however, it is even more risky for all children to enter a chat room. Children are easy to take advantage of, easy to be influenced and are very trusting. What other choice do they have? They are in this world and their very existence depends on adults; why would an adult try to hurt them. It is inconceivable to a child that adults would do harm to children in such a devious way as to seek them out in chat rooms on the internet and plan to abduct them. Internet chat rooms have just added another avenue of crime and abuse to children. No matter who you are, adult or child, you have no idea who is lurking in a chat room. Some people are just there observing and taking it all in waiting to get information to possibly scam you or take your identity or worse, to make plans to abduct a child. Every person that you chat with can be a wolf in sheep's clothing; they may give a totally different perception on the internet than they would in person, therefore, making children especially vulnerable. Chat rooms are dangerous for children and should be off limits to them.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

What have you learned about the textbooks we are using for this course?

I have learned that some professors actually use the textbooks that you purchased for the class. I got one of mine from my daughter that took this same class on campus last Fall (NOT same instructor). The book was still in the wrapping and bran new. She told me that the teacher never required them to use it, she ran copies in class and used power point to get them the info. I am amazed, I don't think I can write anything without the reference material, pdf files, the internet and emailing my instructor, many many times. I still wonder how .14 of an inch appears out of nowhere.

What have you learned about the writing process and/or about yourself during this lesson?

I have learned that I can change my mind several times on subjects. I have learned that I hate hate hate hate to write with a passion but in the end it really wasn't so bad and I liked what I wrote. I just really really really hate the process. I get so very much stalled on very small insignificant things. I have learned that if I have a passion about voicing information then I can write probably too much and bore people to death. If I have a purpose that is practical then I can write. I said it. I can, I just hate it.

Which outline would I not use again.

I would not use the Pros and Cons outline again because it just wasn't structured enough for me. It was quicker to come up with items. Maybe it is the topic, sometimes it is the topic and not the structure that can ruin things. I am not very passionate about the topic, it was actually something that annoyed me very much last semester in classes. The only way I would use this on my own and not being required by law of the professor is if it was used in conjunction with another outline.

Which techniques for generating ideas has been most helpful?

The formal outline and the classical outline has been helpful along with the questions and task sets in the Writing Arguments book. Anything that has a shell and all I need to do is begin to fill in the blank gets me going. It really does, after some procrastination, and some tears when things don't go my way I end up really liking what I did. I actually got so engrossed in the essay outline that argues both sides, that I argued for a cause that after the research that I did I returned back to my original opinion of when I had no info to go on just a gut feeling. I am actually arguing and working the audience for a cause I don't believe in %100. I couldn't explain why because it would be more like 8 points and we were only required 3 points to talk about. Plus I didn't want to be SUPER controversial. I did gear it toward an audience of volunteers however the person that I interviewed asked to be sent a copy of my work. If the audience were a different one, then I might have made it super controversial, but this is my life to live and I do not want to rock the waves in this community right now.

What other students may be having problems with..

What I am experiencing and many other students may have similar concerns if taking freshman level courses is inexperience with latest software and hardware. I have run a home based business and taught myself everything I thought I needed to know about word processing in the past decade. Usually I could figure something out on my own or I would discard the need for it. My main problem is with the bran new laptop, the heat and motion sensitive finger pad that hides and moves your cursor around so that you make a multitude more mistakes than before with the PC with a regular keyboard. Also the software that I purchased cheap because I am a student from hasn't helped me out that much because most of my instructors don't use the latest version nor do any of my friends so when I am stuck I am really stuck. There is NO help tab!!!! HELP!!! I waste a lot of time on problems.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

How did previewing sections of a book (rather than simply reading them) help you to understand the material?

Previewing sections allows me to know how much time to spend on something. Rather I need to speed up, slow down, or take another day to finish the material it is important in time management. Previewing may also give clues to look for while reading, for instance, if you are looking to find reasons against an idea, the sub headings and topical sentences can give clues to where to focus. Taking into consideration other details also helps, like who is audience intended to be, who might the author be, what is the authors purpose, what angle does the author have and what are the authors credentials?

What is the goal of argument

The goal is to convince somebody of something meaningful and worthwhile with credibility. Many people use argument in the media to sell their ideas or their products. It is not necessarily to debate with someone. Primarily it is to show evidence and support it claims. The main idea is to inform and then to persuade.

Why and how is argument both a process and a product?

An argument is a process because once the research and writing begin to take place a person learns more about the subject. Originally we have opinions formed, but when we take time to research and further our knowledge in a subject, opinions can change. Especially when playing the truth and doubting game. Advocating for both sides of an argument can reveal another new truth. In the end the direction of an argument can take a different path and therefore be a result or product of the writing process.

Did you ask anyone else to make recommendations about your revising process? Why or why not?

I did ask my husband for recommendations on my first draft. He had no ideas for me. I am thinking that he barely skated by when he took English 111 or doesn't have to much brain time to think about my essay seriously. He did make some remarks about the format, which once I looked them up in the Hacker manual, he was wrong about them. Next time I will ask one of my facebook friends instead of my workaholic husband to read and give me ideas about my writing.

Which genre of argument would you most likely write on your own? Why?

I would most likely write letters to the editor because then I would not feel the pressure of writing mechanics and being judged on grammar and style. I could solely focus on the heart of the matter and informing from my personal point of view.

Which of the suggested Tasks from Writing Arguments did you find most helpful in pre-writing your revision? Why

I discussed the issue with friends and my husband, it wasn't controversial, just matter of fact. They helped me to find evidence. When I was revising, I actually rebuilt, using the same ideas but not all the same evidence. I left out many ideas that I had in the first draft. Also changing the point of view to 3 rd person changed everything.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Why is a written argument a good way to defend (support) an opinion?

A written argument is a good way to defend your opinion because it takes more thought and organization to put it down on paper. If your argument is justified and you feel that you can change or persuade people, writing it down and submitting it to the appropriate direction can be fulfilling, helpful, and effect change in many cases. Writing can help you or the group you are working in to define the issue or the problem or find out it’s true purpose. It helps you to evaluate your own thoughts or those of others and may direct you to more research. These in turn can lead to modification of viewpoints. Sometimes writing down your argument helps you to make a stand and realize more exactly what it is you believe.

Why and how is argument both a process and a product?

When people begin an argument they are actually sorting through problems to find the best solution that they are both content with. Each person’s portion of the argument is a product. As interactions take place in the form of a committee to take action, or as an informal online message board, the brief products turn into something else. As the discussion gets longer, it is normal for the player's ideas to shift or change little by little: the process has begun. Sometimes a compromise can be found or possibly through listening people can empathize each other’s viewpoint. Each person brings something to the table but by combination the process may change each participants end product.

What is worth arguing about?

Anything important and meaningful to one person may bring about disagreement with another person is worth arguing about or sharing opinions and why each person holds those opinions. When two people can offer their viewpoints reasonably listening to the other side a compromise may be reached, a greater awareness of others reasonings, and possibly a shift or firmer stance on the issue. Anything that leads to people justifying why they hold certain beliefs and why certain rules exist can be argued with an open mind. Arguing can be a fun way to get others opinions and to see what they believe. Listening is the key ingredient. What is important to one person may not be important to another person. A question might be, “Is this important enough to me to spend time on this?”, or “Do I even support my belief with any evidence? Am I blindly led?” Arguing does not have to be disrespectful; in fact a reasonable argument with adequate research and fact finding is very respectable and worthwhile.

What is the goal of argument?

The goal of argument is not to argue and fight with someone, it is actually quite different. Most people think of the unpleasantness of an argument that they recently just had, or a difference of opinion from someone they know. An argument can be a fun productive way that activates conversations with diverse people reasonably. Argument is not about debate where there are two sides attacking one another and defenses being thrown up. There doesn’t have to be a winner and a loser in an argument. Most importantly the goal to be reached is more understanding of the issue at hand. The purpose of an argument is to discover a better solution, to find faults and strengths and ultimately the truth.

What does the book Writing Arguments tell us about the concept of truth?

Writing Arguments tell us that a writer while producing his/her argument will continually find herself moving from truth seeking to persuasion and back and forth. Asking questions and finding solutions is part of truth seeking. Persuasion deals with trying to convince your audience or someone that has the power and resources to help your cause to act on the information. With truth seeking one can find more understanding and therefore redirect the argument to a better source for the solution or possibly a better audience. Going back and forth until you find the best audience and the best solution is the goal, not just winning. Truth is making the best reasonable claim for your cause, coming up with the best answer for all parties while being open minded and taking responsibility for what you are arguing for.

How does one demonstrate his or her belief in an opinion?

Through writing one can support belief in an idea through argumentation or by providing evidence and reasons to support the idea. Credibility comes from researching both sides and the quality of resources and writing skills. Summarizing a work is a good way to demonstrate belief in an opinion. Does the article seem open minded to argumentation from the other side? With a reasonable amount of proper research on many opposing views one should be able to decide what it is that they believe. It may take some time, thought, and possibly modification to come to a stand on an issue especially if more truth is uncovered. Exploring, researching and finding the key outlet for your argument will demonstrate effectively where you stand on an issue. Outlets include, correspondence, letters to the editor, newspaper columns, public affairs or magazines, journals, proposals to agencies, legal briefs on court decisions, public affairs advocacy ads, websites, blogs and postings, visual arguments, and speeches.