When You Cherish Your Son-In-Law

                                My daughter, grandson and son in law.

My son in law is a wonderful husband and a great father. I love watching him with my grandson. Not only are they father and son, but they’re buddies. They truly hang out, lol. I also love the fact that he gets up with my grandson while my daughter sleeps in. He fixes his breakfast, gives him a bath, selects his cloths and spends hours reading and playing with him. This man bakes his son brownies and makes pancakes, takes him to doctor’s appointments, and the barber. He even cleans the house. Most importantly he’s employed and provides shelter and health benefits for both of them.

I wanted him to know that he’s a blessing in my family and that I’m truly grateful for his presence in our life. I had this delicious vanilla cake with chocolate icing made for him and added the Laker’s color, his favorite NBA team. He loved it. He’s so humble, something this simple truly makes him happy. We did throw in a little cash and a gift certificate for a car detail.

                               My grandson blowing out daddy’s birthday candles.

It was wonderful to have my siblings and their children and their children present as well. Every one had a great time. The children played and the adults consumed lots of food and drink. My holiday appetizers were “banging” and the punch was wonderful. I tried a different punch this year. I used rainbow sherbet and ginger ale. It was delicious.

My niece dancing to All The Single Ladies by Beyonce.
I made honey glazed chicken wings and chicken tenders wrapped in maple bacon, which were devoured as well as his favorite dishes which included potato salad, crock pot baked beans, Lil Smokies in BQ sauce, Lil Smokies in a Blanket, deviled eggs, meatballs and the list goes on. Here’s the Chicken Tenders and the Honey Glazed Wings recipes.

                               What? We didn’t touch him!

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, but I do intend to live up to spending more time with my family this year. Although I love blogging and blog hopping, I’ve found myself spending hours and hours on the computer. As a result, I must adjust my schedule. I have a wonderful relationship with all of my siblings. One of my brothers said, There was nothing better than family, football and food.” I hope you will cherish your family and let them know that you appreciate their presence in your life during the new year.






Lock Up My Thieving 6 Year Old Please

 

Would you turn your 6 year old in for stealing a pack of stickers? Would you allow the cops to place them into the squad car and haul them off for shoplifting? Check out this video. A mom wanted to teach her 6 year old a lesson for shoplifting, so she turned her daughter into store security. To enforce the lesson, they called the cops and placed her in the squad car.When I saw the video my response was wow. I asked myself if I would have gone to that extreme.  I never had a problem with my daughter stealing, but I certainly would have wanted to teach her a lesson. I’m thinking my solution would have been to make my daughter put the stickers back since we were still in the store and I would have further explained that stealing is wrong we must pay for items that we take from a store. 

I’ve heard of parents using this tactic and the cops playing along. I’m also wondering where a 6 year old learned how to steal.  Her sister told on her, so they’re obviously being taught right from wrong.  I also wonder why she just didn’t ask her mother for the stickers. 
Whatever the reason, I hope she learned a lesson.  Children usually steal to get even, to get more attention, or so they can give themselves or someone else a gift.  It seems that this little girl was stealing for herself, so I’m wondering if it was for attention or she’s feeling deprived at home in some way.  In addition to teaching her child a lesson, maybe mom should take a look at herself and what’s going on inside her home.  She may get to the root of the problem, and not have to deal with this action again. 
 
Have you had a problem with your child or children stealing?  Do you think this mom was wrong in the way she handled this situation?  How would you have handled it?  Please leave us a comment, we would love to hear your opinion.

The Blizzard of 2009



Last week-end The Weather Channel forecast a blizzard and posted a winter storm warning for my area. Now if that isn’t a sign that winter has officially arrived, I don’t know what is. I decided to spend the day at the office and later head out to the grocery store. Never go to the grocery store when they’re calling for a blizzard unless you’re prepared to take a few elbows or become engaged in a fight over a shopping cart, parking space or the last gallon of milk or pack of Charmin. That’s just how it goes. I have concluded that I love drama. Why else would I have
waited until the eve of the blizzard to enter into the danger zone. I must admit that it was uneventful, I was able to throw the few items that I needed into the cart and slipped out of the parking lot unnoticed by the idiots arguing a few vehicles down. Rather than head home, I decided to fill the car up and head to Michael’s. I would occupy my time during the blizzard blog hopping and knitting after preparing a crock pot of potatoes and pork chops. I had made homemade vegetable soup earlier and placed a few containers in the freezer. I pulled a container of soup to defrost. There’s nothing better than homemade soup on a cold, snowy day.

Their forecast was correct, snow fall started at approximately 10:00 pm. The local weather station called for approximately 2.5 feet of the white stuff. Part of me dreaded the event, but another part of me was excited. Our last blizzard was in 2003. We had approximately 3 feet dumped on us at that time. I made sure the shovel and rock salt was on the front porch and said let the show begin. I took the picture shown above at mid-night. My reindeer and bushes are now covered.



The storm ended after dumping 2 feet of snow. It was a beautiful sight. This is a picture of my storage buildings and a barn that sits behind them the next day. I wish my grandson was here to enjoy making snow angels and building Frosty. I’m hoping we will have a little left when he arrives December 28 for a week.

This is a picture of one of my decks the next morning. I’m so glad my decks and table are strong.

This is a picture of some of the evergreens along my back yard. They were beautiful. I enjoyed the event, but I’ve had enough snow to last for the next 10 years. One thing that I have noticed is that children don’t enjoy the blizzards the way I used to when I was growing up, at least in my neighborhood. When I was growing up, we spent the day sled riding and making snowmen. I remember going through old cloths trying to find the perfect hat and scarf and looking for branches for our snowman’s arms. We also stole mom’s carrots for his nose. We had a coal stove in the kitchen, so our snowman truly had coal black eyes. We used a licorice stick for his mouth. I remember my father giving us sandpaper to sharpen the runners on our Lightning Guiders, sleds, so they would move faster. We stayed outside until we were damn near frozen. When our feet could no longer move, we thawed by the stove and sipped hot chocolate. Oh they were the good ole days. Mom spent hours making homemade vegetable soup too, which we devoured in minutes.

I did not see one child build a snow man or go sled riding in the neighborhood this past week-end. I would bet my paycheck they’re on the computer or playing some computer game. Listen up children, get off the computer and put your video games away. You’re missing out on some great memories.

How did you spend your days during snow storms?  How do your children spend their days when it snows?  Leave us a comment.

It’s A Charlie Brown Christmas

Look, it’s A Charlie Brown Christmas. The economy has affected many people and places, I think this is a perfect display of where we are in this country. This tree is displayed in Concord, CA. Because of budget restraints, they were unable to put out $23,000 for a cut tree. Instead, they decided to use a tree that was already standing. This tree was chosen because it was close to electrical outlets. They believed using this tree to show their Christmas spirit was better than nothing. I agree. 
When I first looked at it, my reaction was dang what kind of tree is this. The city of Concord said it is getting mixed reactions with the tree. Many residents feel the tree is pathetic, they have always had beautiful trees on display. Some residents look at the tree as being unique. My initial reaction was that it was pathetic too. As I read the story and thought about where we are in this country, I appreciated the tree.
What would your reaction be if this was the tree your town displayed? Before I read this story I had been thinking about the fact that Christmas has become so commercialized. At times, I believe we’ve lost the true meaning of Christmas in this country. People spend thousands of dollars purchasing gifts and for the next year they struggle to pay off the debt. I used to be one of them, but I woke up years ago and relinquished my membership in the debt club. I make as many gifts as I can, be it a scarf for the kids, gift basket or a scrapbook. My family seems to appreciate the home made gifts so much more. You can’t put a price on a gift where someone has taken time and energy to make something for you.
For me Christmas is about the birth of Christ and spending time with family and friends not so much the gifts. I love cooking, making cookies and other treats, and just relaxing. I do enjoy watching the children laugh and play, and that’s where I spend my money on the children. When I looked at the tree displayed in Concord, CA I wondered why someone didn’t donate a tree to the town. Christmas is after all about giving. The state of California has beautiful mountains and evergreens. It simply would have been a matter of cutting it down and hauling it to the specified location. Oh, that’s right someone would have to take the time to do that. Everyone is so busy these days, who has time to help someone in need.
I admire the town in their attempt to show their Christmas spirit on a budget. Most people would have been too embarrassed to admit they were struggling and just couldn’t afford it, but wanted to participate in the celebration with what they had. I believe there is a lesson to be learned with this Charlie Brown Christmas tree. It’s a reminder of the true meaning of Christmas. Jesus Christ Our Lord and Savior would have been pleased.
 
I would love to know your thoughts on this Charlie Brown Christmas tree. Please leave us a comment.

Do You Give Your Child A Sugar High?

Moms you will be glad to know General Mills has agreed to reduce the sugar content in their cereal by 25%. I’m glad Sonny the Cuckoo Bird will remain the same. He’s so cute, and he’s Coocoo for Cocoa Puffs. Even though I don’t give my 2 year old grandson cold cereal at this point, I’m glad to hear that General Mills will be helping to instill healthy eating in our children.

Our country has a big problem with obesity, that includes childhood obesity. I don’t blame our children for being overweight, I blame the large corporations for promoting sweets, fast food and other junk. I also blame the schools and parents for serving it. I didn’t give my daughter many sweets when she was growing up. She was a serious dancer from the age of 5 through college. As a result, she became very disciplined with her eating habits and very weight conscious. I, however, did not follow the restrictions that I placed on her and I am now paying a price for it. Getting the excess weight off has become a struggle for me and many other Americans.

We live in the land of good and plenty. In most countries people are starving. We reward ourselves and our children with food. Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, Chucky E Cheese and many others gear their products toward children. They ask for it, we give it to them. Children aren’t concerned about their health and they shouldn’t be held accountable for the foods they consume. They want what tastes good and they want to have fun. They want immediate gratification. We as parents must make better choices for them and for ourselves. Obesity starts with being 5 pounds overweight and than it increases to 10, 20, 30 and before we know it we’re struggling to get 50 plus pounds off.

Because I’m struggling with my weight, I’m careful of what I serve to my grandson. I also think that many parents feed their children cold cereals because it’s quick and easy. Many mothers work outside the home and they don’t have time to turn 0n the stove before they head out. When they get home in the evening they prepare the quickest and easiest meals not necessarily the healthiest.

General Mills is coming under fire for promoting foods that contain too much sugar. A study showed that General Mills made six out of ten of the least healthiest cereals. The study also showed that the least healthiest cereals were the most advertised and were geared toward children. General Mills also makes Trix, Kix, Boo Berry, and Lucky Charms among others. I do love their healthier Honey Nut Cheerios.

Do we blame our children for being overweight or do we blame our businesses for promoting unhealthy eating? Do we blame our children for being overweight or do we blame the providers of the food? As a mother, I know the struggles of trying to get a child to eat healthy. They don’t want veggies or fruit. They want candy, ice cream, McDonald’s, and pizza. You know the routine. Our children are less active these days too. Their world revolves around the computer, texting, and video games. Rarely do you see children outside riding bikes, skating, playing hide and seek or hop scotch.

Personally, I think we need to bond as a country and work together to eliminate obesity. Starting with the companies who are making and promoting sugary and fattening foods is a good start. They next step is working at home to ensure our children understand the consequences of unhealthy eating.

I applaud General Mills for reducing the amount of sugar in their cereals. Do you instill healthy eating habits in your child? Please share a few healthy foods you promote.


Frosty Discusses Sex With Children

Frosty the Snowman 640

When I think of Frosty The Snowman, I think of a jolly little fellow who’s laughing and playing with children not promoting porn and bullwhips. CBS is behind a video that has crossed the line in more ways than one.  How can you use a character that is so loved by children and associate him with sex and violence and think it’s a joke. What is happening to our country people? They believed it was harmless fun. WTH? We’re not talking about teens who put the video together, but executives who are paid six digits plus a year who are the masterminds. I use the word mastermind loosely.

I am appalled, I am offended, I’m feeling frosty. Not only do they have Frosty The Snowman talking about going to a strip club, but he discusses breast size, how many women he’s been with, and knocking someone up. They have a child calling someone a whore. To top it off, he states that he hits girls and babies. What kind of person would create this type of ad, and who was the idiot that approved it? The ad/video is running on CBS’ website and Youtube. Thank goodness they had enough sense to not air it on TV.

Apparently, CBS believed this video was an appropriate way to promote Frosty The Snowman, which will air on their network December 18, and the show How I Met Your Mother. I’m still trying to understand the logic and how anyone could believe this was a good idea. I’ve been unsuccessful. Both the creator and approvers should be fired. Thank goodness my sweetie is too young to google.  Can you imagine your child coming across this video? I purchased a Frosty The Snowman DVD last Christmas for my grandson with the intention of making it a holiday tradition. I loved Frosty when I was growing up. Never in my wildest dreams did I see Frosty hanging out at a strip club, drooling over women’s breast or telling someone they should have engaged in sex because they couldn’t knock someone up. How can you take something so innocent and turn it into trash?

I’m not a big fan of CBS, but I do watch the network occasionally. I am now questioning this station and its management. Several reporters have tried to contact the station to question them about the video. Phone calls are not being returned. I wonder why? Could it be they are afraid they will put their foot in their mouths when they try to explain the video. While they’re trying to pull their foot out of their mouth, someone should put a foot up CBS’ ass.
Feel free to leave your opinion, we would love to hear it.

Gourmet Toppings for Popcorn

 

Winter has arrived. I’m watching the snow fall out my window. It’s a beautiful afternoon. This time of year, I love to watch holiday movies or curl up with a good book. This would be a perfect afternoon or evening for some homemade gourmet popcorn. I thought I share a few of my favorite popcorn toppings for you to enjoy too. Pop a bag of unsalted and unbuttered microwave popcorn. Use one of the following toppings:
Cinnamon Toast Topping

  • 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg

Melt 3 – 4 tablespoons of butter. Mix with the Cinnamon Toast Topping. Melt 3 -4 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over popcorn. Sprinkle the Cinnamon Toast Topping over the popcorn.


Spicy Italian Topping

  • 1/3 grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of garlic salt

Place popcorn in a bowl. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over popcorn. Mix with Spicy Italian mixture.


Cookies & Cream Topping

  • Grind about 10 chocolate sandwich cookies in a zip lock bag.
  • Mix in a pinch of salt.
  • Pour popcorn into a bowl and drizzle with 3 – 4 tablespoons of butter.
  • Mix with cookie crumb mixture

Leave us a comment with your favorite popcorn topping. I’m always looking for something yummy and new. Check out my list of Holiday Movies, you may enjoy them too.


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Mattel’s Burqa Barbie Controversy

Barbie is involved in another controversy, i.e. Burqa Barbie. It seems that Mattel has offended some Islamic women, and they’re demanding that Mattel take note. Mattel has produced 500 Barbies in a Burqa for auction in Italy. The auction is part of Barbie’s 50th anniversary. Proceeds will go to the Rewrite the Future, a charity, which helps millions of children around the world effected by conflict.

A representative from Mattel has stated, “I think this is really important for girls, wherever they are from they should have the opportunity to play with a Barbie that they feel represents them”.

Muslim women are offended because the Burqa is not a true representation of Islamic dress, so where is Mattel coming from? Islamic women are fighting to not have to wear a Burqa. The Burqa is believed by Muslim women to be a garment forced on them during the Taliban, it is not mentioned in the Quran; therefore, it should not be seen as a part of their traditional dress. The Quran is our Bible. They see the Burqa as a means to oppress women. Muslim women are required to wear Hijabs, a scarf, to cover their heads and to dress modestly only. The Burqa is worn over a woman’s normal dress when she is outside the home in some Islamic countries. It is made to cover them from head to toe. Because of political instability, it was seen as a way of protecting women so they were forced to wear them.

I normally don’t post on religious or cultural issues, but I believe this concern was important enough to bring to light. Especially since it involved a toy maker. I am somewhat knowledgeable of Islam and I am aware that Islamic women are fighting for rights as women. Rights that we take for granted in this country. Muslim women believe that Mattel should have taken the time to understand the Islamic culture and what it represents before they produced a doll that supposedly represents traditional Islamic dress. Especially, a Barbie doll that little girls will be playing with. Burqas are currently the center of a big controversy in Western Europe. They are being banned because they are not a part of the traditional Islamic dress.I posted on the Burqa Barbie because so many problems are created simply because statements and opinions are formed without having all the facts. What’s funny is Mattel’s Barbie has been banned in most Islamic countries. They see her as being too westernized for their little girls. She has been replaced with the Fulla doll (shown above). This doll is more culturally correct as far as Islamic dress than the Burqa Barbie produced by Mattel.

I patronize Mattel and I will continue; however, a little research will go a long way when it comes to cultural and religious issues. Do you think Mattel should have done their homework before they produced a culturally incorrect Barbie? Do you think the focus was on money rather than the fight of Islamic women for their rights? Would love to hear your thoughts on the Burqa Barbie.

I Won’t Leave My Child To Fight In A War

Meet Army Spc. Alexis Hutchinson, 21. Spc. Hutchinson refused deployment to Afghanistan because she didn’t have anyone to care for her child. Here’s her story, she initially thought her mother would be able to care for her 10 month old son during her year deployment; however, her mother changed her mind at the last minute. You see her mother is currently caring for her elderly mother, her sister and a special needs daughter. In addition to caring for 3 family members, she runs a daycare with 14 children during the day. Her mother stated that the baby would need more care than she would be able to provide with her current responsibilities, so she reneged.

Spc. Hutchinson requested additional time to make arrangements for the baby, but instead of receiving additional time she was ordered to place her child in foster care and deploy as scheduled. She was unable to make other arrangements and refused to place her baby in foster care. She was arrested for not deploying as ordered. Although no criminal charges have been filed against her, she has been confined to her base in Savannah, GA. This soldier is a single mom who is no longer connected to her baby’s daddy. She had no where to turn, and she made the choice that any true mother would make. She refused to leave her 10-month old baby in the care of a stranger while she entered a combat zone. I say you go momma.
Now according to an Army spokesman, the Army would not deploy a soldier who had no one to care for their child. According to Spc. Hutchinson, she was denied additional time to find someone to care for her baby. The Army has vowed to get to the bottom of it what exactly took place with this mother and her superiors. In the meantime, her mother has retrieved the infant since her daughter’s arrest and is caring for him in spite of the burden that it has placed on her.
I will leave my personal views on the wars that we are currently engaged in out of this post, but I applaud this young mother for refusing to leave her child to go to war. I hope that serious actions are taken against the superior who ordered this young lady into a combat zone at the expense of her child. You have to be a pretty heartless person to give that command.
 
Would you have deployed or placed out your hands for the bracelet? I would have been arrested, there’s no way I would have placed my child in foster care especially if I was placing my life on the line. This young mother would have had no peace of mind while she was there. How could she, she would have no idea where her child was or who was caring for him. How could she focus in a war zone not knowing? I would love to hear your opinion on this young mother and what you would have done had you been in her shoes. Please leave us a comment.

My Little Spider Man

Ready To Trick or Treat

Worn Out Spider Man
Xavier choose a Spider Man costume for Halloween. My daughter initially choose an adorable little lion outfit, but he would have none of it. He claimed he was scared of the outfit, lol. In the top picture he was preparing to go out for a few treats. He was so excited. He remembered to say Trick or Treat and Thank You.
 
I may be a little biased, but isn’t he the cutest Spider Man that you’ve ever seen.