Saturday, April 29, 2006

Baxley's First Stand

I've not been the first person to point out that Lucy Baxley needs to take a stand on some issues in order to be taken seriously as a candidate. So when I saw this article in the Birmingham News this morning, I felt like it was only fair to point it out.

I like Baxley. I think she'd make a decent candidate for the Democrats, but she'll never come close to winning (even against a certain former governor) unless she speaks up more. Perhaps this is just the first of many such statements.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Good Ol' Fashioned Supervision

I remember predicting this sometime ago, when the church arsonists were caught, and they were associated with the evils of Facebook. Every time something goes wrong, people look for something to blame, and it's rarely the parents. It seems I was right to think that the Internet and online social networking would be the next big evil for the media to pounce on. Everywhere I look, I'm seeing stories where parents are warned about Oh, the humanity!

Remember when all we had to worry about was Grand Theft Auto? And before that, remember when we only had to keep them away from Marilyn Manson? And before that...?

It doesn't begin with the young child and teenage years, either. My husband and I, still awaiting the birth of our first child, are already being bombarded with ways to keep our home safe for the baby. We've already been marketed to by a particular industry on ways that we can take what I like to call the Ron Popiel approach to parenting: "Set it and forget it."

  1. Put her in the play yard.
  2. Put special locks on all the cabinet doors.
  3. Put special gates up for every room of the house.

While these methods have some measure of usefulness, kids find ways to get around them, even in their toddling stage. And while I plan on a certain amount of common sense caution, like locking up medicines and cleaners, what if I simply just decided to just keep an eye on her? After all, most accidents when the parent has his/her back turned.

The same goes for these other, newer evils. Can your kids get into trouble on Of course they can! They can also get into trouble at the grocery store if they don't know how to handle dealing with strangers. Can they be exposed to violence and foul language in movies, games, and online? Of course, but if you're worried about exposure, you may want to keep them out of school.

MySpace has legitimate uses, just as video games, television, and other experiences. My husband and I plan to set up a MySpace account for the baby as soon as she's born because it creates an easy (and free) way to share news, video clips, and pictures with realatives and friends. Video games can be educational and just plain fun without being dangerous. Same goes for television. The difference is, parents have to monitor what their child is doing while at the same time preparing them for what to expect should that watchful eye be temporarily blinded.

I'll never understand the concept of allowing children (including teens) to have so much electronic equipment in their bedrooms. You're asking for problems. I never had a television in my room until college, so if I wanted to watch a program or a movie or play a game, my parents would likely see what it was I was seeing. Same goes with the computer. But at the same time, they understood that my friend had a television and computer in her room, and if I went over there, I might not be supervised while using them. So they taught me things about how the world works, so that I would be prepared to handle a situation where someone I didn't know wanted to meet me. We also had open communication, so that if I ever stumbled upon a situation that I was unsure how to handle, I could simple ask my daddy.

My point is this. It's a dangerous world out there, and things are going to happen. Situations will arise. Your kids will be exposed to something you don't want them to be exposed to. There is no magical pill that will keep them safe. There is no magical "set it and forget it" button or filter or gadget that will supervise your kids for you. Instead, sometimes the old ways are best. Supervise your kids. Know where they are and what they're doing. But most importantly, make sure that both of you are prepared for when that fails.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Fox News Pundit Is Bush Sock Puppet

It's old news, but it's about time that they made it official.

Mo... ore Money

The News reported today that Roy Moore has collected more in campaign donations for the last round that Gov. Riley. Good for him, I guess. He still trails Riley in the total amount of contributions collected.

What's more, over half of Moore's contributions are from undisclosed sources, which makes me wonder if he's hiding anything...

On a side note, my husband and I had an interesting discussion last night. I thought I was the only one to make this observation, but apparently, he has noticed the same thing. Look at the two pictures below:

Ladies and gentlemen, one of these men is running for public office, and the other is a certain former CEO. Can you tell the difference?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Baby Moderate: UPDATE

Apparently, my little girl is just as stubborn as her mommy. As of my doctor's appointment yesterday, my labor has stopped progressing. I still have another couple of weeks until my due date, but the doctor says that I'm expecting an 8-1/2 lb. chunk of baby if I carry to full term. So I'm walking, waiting out bad weather and full moons, having "fun" with my hubby... Whatever might encourage an earlier delivery date.

Thankfully, I made it through my last week at work, so I have a little more time on my hands these days. I've started filling said time with my new satellite Internet connection, updating my blog, getting caught up on reading, and house cleaning. If I drop out unexpectedly, you guys will probably be able to guess what's happened...

When Will We Be Blessed?

My husband and I finally sold our 1999 Ford Mustang (his baby) and purchased a more childseat-friendly 2003 Ford Focus wagon (averaging 31 mpg, baby!). I purchased the new tag a couple of weeks ago. We already have a 2001 Focus sedan, for which I purchased a personalized Alabama Wildlife tag because I think that the standard "Stars Fell On" tag is just plain ugly. Yes, I'll pay an additional $50 to the establishment in the name of style. At least it was going toward a good cause.

Unfortunately, the new "God Bless America" tags were not yet available. So does anyone else out there happen to know when they will be available?

Giving Alabama Law A Boost

Legislation was recently passed in Alabama that will require children up to age 6 to be in a child safety seat or booster seat, among other things. It's an improvement over a proposed law that would have set the age limit to age 12. (Personally, I would have thrown out the age limits and set a height/weight range.) The bill is set to be signed by Governor Riley.

What bugs me, and I hate that I didn't have the time and energy to devote to commenting sooner, is that the law leaves out a vital detail that could be the true difference between life and death. The law says nothing about the child seat being used according to manufacturer recommendations or being properly installed. Those are two very important things. If a child seat is not properly installed, it can become a dangerous projectile during a crash. And if your child is not properly latched in or does not fit the weight and height specifications for the seat, then your child could become a projectile if/when the harness breaks or comes off.

Wouldn't it have been a better idea if lawmakers had fully researched the idea before pulling a Langford to get a useless, election-year feel-good bill through?

Fair Is Fair

I don't know what it is about Loretta Nall, but I like her. Maybe it's her spunk and sense of humor. She seems like the kind of person that you'd like to hang out with, have a few drinks, etc. She doesn't hide behind political b.s. She just says what she's thinking. That's probably why she's become so popular among the bloggers and among the younger voters.

Please note that I'm not necessarily endorsing her or any other candidate at this time, but I do believe that everyone should have a fair shot at being placed on the ballot. Please visit her blog. The link is in my blogroll to the right. Particularly, please visit this link, follow the directions on the page, and help to get Ms. Nall on the ballot.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

That Annoying Little Voice

It's official. I'm in labor. I'm not in active labor, but the process has begun. Within the next couple of weeks, I will be a mommy.

I'm still getting everything together. Thank you notes haven't been finished, but they are in the works. Laundry has been done. House is being cleaned. I have everything that I think I'm going to need, but there's that annoying little voice in the back of my head saying, "You're not ready. You're not ready..." I hear that it never goes away.

So into the unknown I go...

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Get 'Em, Johnny!

Shelby the Pork King isn't very happy right now...

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Maternal Moderate

I've been noticably absent... The truth is that I'm getting ready to leave my job to be a full time mommy. This means that for the next three weeks or so, I'll be very, very busy at work training my replacement. My Internet access at home won't be up until at Tuesday at the earliest, and even then, I'm busy getting ready for baby. I apologise for the neglect, but I will try to post something later this week. (I'm not done ranting about that booster seat bill just yet, and I plan to talk to Rep. McClendon about it.) I will still be posting, but expect it to be pretty sparse from here through June or so. Also coming will be the responses to my questionaire. (I know I've made promises and promises... It's coming...)