Monday, June 30, 2008
Zach's sunflowers have started blooming but so far we're only seeing varieties of yellow.
This one has a tinge of rust color in the petals. I sure hope those packets of seeds had some of the more unusual colors in them.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
In the United States, traffic crashes account for 40 percent of all deaths among 15-20 year olds.
Almost 20 percent of the deaths on Arkansas roads occurred in crashes involving teen drivers.
In Arkansas, AAA found that almost 57 percent of those killed in accidents involving teen drivers were either passengers, occupants of other vehicles, or non-motorists such as pedestrians.
Young drivers typically carry more passengers in their cars than older drivers, and these passengers are usually around the same age as the driver. Often this results in a deadly combination of inattention, inexperience, and immaturity. A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that the risk of death increased significantly with each additional teen passenger transported by a teen driver. In single vehicle crashes involving teen drivers, two-thirds of fatally injured passengers were also teens (between ages 15 and 19).
A frequent contributing factor to crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving teens is the decision by the young novice driver and his or her peers not to use seat belts.
More and more traffic accidents involving teens can be directly related to their use of cell phones while driving.
Our current driver education system does not teach young people to drive; it teaches them to pass a test. Learning to drive is a long-term process, one that cannot be effectively managed through the traditional driver education program. Once the basic skills are learned, extensive additional “on the job” training without distractions, and with the assistance of a more mature and experienced driver is needed. As their skills and maturity develop, young novice drivers can then proceed to full licensure.
When are we going to wake up and stop handing the keys, to a possible death sentence, to our kids?
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Orange soda label. The contents were orange too but I zoomed in on the big Orange word.
Miz Joni is our challenge hostess this week and all the ladies over in my sidebar participated too. Y'all be sure to go see cause I'd be willing to bet the imaginations have been a'buzzin.
Friday, June 27, 2008
The Helena-West Helena Mayor has written a letter of apology,,, of a sort, to the good people of his town. The first thing I noticed is that he isn't apologizing for any wrongdoing in ordering the abandonment of those poor pups, he still doesn't think he did anything wrong.
He's ruffled quite a few feathers locally, nationally, and worldwide. No arrests have been made yet, wondering if there will be?
Here's some of the latest news about some of the pups that have been found.
I'm hoping be able to come by to visit off and on today. There are 3 little girls and a terrorist in my living room so it's probably going to be just a little hectic around here.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Thanks for giving them a fun day Jerri!
Jilly Beans went with us to Zach's Tae Kwon Do and then came home with us. She and Zach stayed outdoors until just before dark looking for more "hoppies".
Supper tonight was Sonic burgers, nothing to brag about but heartburn. :-)
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
I ventured outdoors in the late afternoon yesterday to water my flower boxes thinking, surely every danged wheat field in the county has been burned off and the soybeans planted by now, but I looked up and there were two more smoke clouds on the horizon.
It doesn't help that it was 95 degrees in the shade either.
Sniffing and snorting aside, I've been cooking up some fine southern vittles the past couple of days, new potatoes, fresh squash, a few fresh tomatoes from southern Arkansas, a little fried okra, and fresh cucumbers and onions with a splash of vinegar. I cooked peas today with some fried cornbread to go along with all the other summer goodies.
I know it was all good because James and Zach dived in like pigs at the trough.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
I need a neon sign like this to cover up the current one on my forehead that appears only to a choice few freaky folks.
Zach had his monthly doctor's appointment this morning, we get there, I'd already threatened all 3 kids with talk about ropes and gags before we went in, we settled down with our magazines, and a young lady sitting across from us said, "Oh, I like your shoes." I smiled and thanked her and went back to thumbing through a travel mag.
Then she says, "Do you like my hair?" and she proceeded to SNATCH it off of her head!
I said, "Um, yes, it's very nice."
Then she went on to tell me she had a pony tail at home that she wore sometimes, that her nails were fake but her boyfriends didn't mind that at all, that her pants were too big because when she woke up this morning she couldn't find hers,,,
She was still talking when they called for Zach to go back to see the doctor.
We're back home now, the children did not go to the library today, nor will Zach go to Tae Kwon Do this evening. Apparently they don't yet know how to behave in a doctor's exam room nor in a restaurant during lunch, so Nanaw went on strike!
Monday, June 23, 2008
Do frogs have Mommas?
The Terrorist had plans to get up at 5:30 this morning so he could go to work with PopPop. They didn't wake me up and Zach's bed is empty so I sure hope that's where he went cause I'm not awake enough to go look for him.
I've had an intimate weekend with Old Arthur and it wasn't a pretty sight.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
reestablished their embassies in Iraq ?
Did you know that the Iraqi government
currently employs 1.2 million Iraqi people?
Did you know
that 3100 schools have been renovated,
364 schools are under rehabilitation,
263 new schools are now under construction;
and 38 new schools have been completed in Iraq?
Did you know that Iraq 's higher educational structure consists
of 20 Universities, 46 Institutes or colleges and 4 research centers,
all currently operating?
Did you know
there are more than 1100 building projects going on in Iraq ?
They include 364 schools, 67 public clinics, 15 hospitals,
83 railroad stations, 22 oil facilities, 93 water facilities
and 69 electrical facilities.
Did you know
that 96% of Iraqi children under the age of 5
have received the first 2 series of polio vaccinations?
Did you know
that 4.3 million Iraqi children were enrolled in primary school by mid October?
Did you know
that 25 Iraq students departed for the United States in
January 2005 for the re-established Fulbright program?
Did you know
that the Iraqi Navy is operational?
They have 5 - 100-foot patrol craft,
34 smaller vessels and a naval infantry regiment.
Did you know
that Iraq ' s Air Force consists of three operational squadrons,
Which includes 9 reconnaissance and 3 US C-130 transport aircraft
(under Iraqi operational control) which operate day and night,
and will soon add 16 UH-1 helicopters and 4 Bell Jet Rangers?
Did you know
that Iraq has a counter-terrorist unit and a Commando Battalion?
Did you know
that the Iraqi Police Service has over 55,000
fully trained and equipped police officers?
Did you know
that there are 5 Police Academies in Iraq
that produce over 3500 new officers every 8 weeks?
Did you know
that there are 1,192,000 cell phone subscribers in Iraq
and phone use has gone up 158%?
Did you know
that Iraq has an independent media that consists of
75 radio stations, 180 newspapers and 10 television stations?
Did you know
that the Baghdad Stock Exchange opened in June of 2004?
Did you know
that 2 candidates in the Iraqi presidential election had a
televised debate recently?
I received the above information from a friend in my email last evening. It was sent as a "good news" type of email as compared to the "not so good news" we receive from the media. As I read down the list I became more and more dismayed.
Normally I would have just deleted the email because I feel that everyone is entitled to their opinions and I don't wish to upset a friend when my opinions are different. But sometimes I'm like an overfilled balloon and I have to let some air out. This time I decided it was time to reply with a few opinions of my own.
Did you know that it was the U.S. taxpayer who's picking up the tab for all of these wonderful things that are happening in Iraq?
We have bridges half a century old that are in danger of collapsing, kids and our elderly going to bed hungry, millions of people who can't afford medical care, a recession that's destroying what our middle class has worked for all their lives, and a government that just doesn't give a hoot about any of it.
We spent BILLiONS upon BILLIONS destroying that country and now are spending BILLIONS upon BILLIONS to build a new and improved Iraq. Knowing about all the good things that are going on in that country is like a slap in the face
The graphics above are stacks of 1 dollar bills, the little man and his car at the bottom of these stacks gives you a visual perspective of how many dollars are in each stack. These 3 stacks of dollars represent approximately what has been spent on the war in Iraq.
Don't ask me to be happy about it.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Jerri came around noon with Abby and Alexis so all the kids sat on the swing outside with their sandwiches and then afterwards we went next door to let them swim awhile in our neighbor's pool.
While they were splashing and whooping and hollering the adults discussed all the local gossip which included the lastest updates on the good ole H-WH Mayor. James told me last night that he'd heard on a Memphis radio program that one of the Jazz/Blues musicians there was going to try to put together a benefit to raise money to help build a facility for any future animals (currently, the Mayor states that there will be no more animals collected from the streets). I sure hope they don't give any money raised to the City cause I fear it would be benefiting the dogs alright, just not the ones of the animal persuasion. Maybe they'll do the right thing and raise money for the Human Society so that they can see that's it's used responsibly.
I'm on week two of dealings with the Improvement District that I do the books for. It's a sewer improvement district, the board president is elderly, disabled, and doesn't know how to write a check, and because I'm kind sometimes, instead of them delivering the things I need to do their accounting, every month I drive 10 miles there and 10 miles back to pick the stuff up, write checks to pay their bills, mail their bills, and make their deposits for them. And apparently, somewhere along the way, during the 14 years that I've been doing this, I've also been adopted for the title of General Flunky for the district.
About two weeks ago I got calls from a plumber and an electrician that the board president had hired to repair the system pumps, they both told me all that was wrong with the pumps and that there was little he could do to repair them, and they needed to be rebuilt or replaced.
All that information went over my head like a jet breaking the sound barrier cause,
I ain't no plumber.
And I ain't no electrician.
I'm a bean counter.
So, I called the offices of Rural Development, who finances the improvement projects and told a fella there as much as I could about the problem due to the fact that I ain't no plumber and I ain't no electrician, and gave him the phone numbers to contact the fellas that had called me so he could get the real deal. He took the numbers and then gave me a number of a place to call to see about getting a bid on repairing or rebuilding the pumps.
I called the number, told them I needed an estimate, and he started asking me questions. I told him the same thing about my lack of plumbing and electrical knowledge as I'd told the other fellas and gave him all the phone numbers in my possession for the people who were supposed to know these things.
Since then I've been filling out loan apps, updating, printing, and scanning, emailing, financial statements, getting phone calls, and while doing all of this, breaking up fights among the kiddies who watch like hawks to see when I'm being distracted by business.
I only charge the District $100 a month for doing their books (I told you I was kind sometimes), I think I'm going in the hole here.
Ok, I'd better get off this computer and do some chores,,,or maybe not.
Hope y'all are having a great day!
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
For a few more minutes, maybe.
I was so tired last night that if someone had looked at me funny, I'd have started crying. Trying to do everything the kids want to do, and everything I need to do in town, on the same day, during the same trip, is exhausting! But I'm doing that this summer due to the gas prices being so high (it takes over a $100 bucks to fill up my truck these days!).
It's also exhausting for me, emotionally, when each one of the kids wants to do, eat, read, play, something different, and argues about it.
With every breath.
Krysten (aka Sissy) is back from her holiday with Jami's friend and she also has ADHD, much worse than Zach, who is doing plenty of bouncing, and ripping and roaring all on his own.
Little Abby is still staying with Alexis, (they're doing some major summer playing) and she's the quiet one, but I'm sure Jerri is suffering through some of these same feelings at her house.
I know the kids are doing all the things that kids do, and have done since the beginning of time, but believe it when I tell you, it's not as easy to handle all the things that kids do when you're older. Even when you've already done all this before, it's harder.
You get tireder.
And they can move and think faster than you.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
While I'm out and about I'll be looking for Orange things to take pictures of. Miz Joni is our hostess for the next photo challenge on June 28th and she chose orange for our next topic.
Ok, I'm outta here, still got to dry my hair and wrangle these kids to convince them they need a little grooming before we walk out the door.
Hope everyone's having a fantastic day!
Monday, June 16, 2008
We'll be retiring ol George W., the blooper king, but I have to wonder if any of our choices in November will be able to do what it takes to bring a little respect back for our great Nation. Cause we're sliding down the slopes people, and we've got to hope that something or someone will lead us in digging in before we get to the bottom.
I don't have a lot of faith in Obama with his poetic ramblings, he just seems to jump around to all sides of the issues without taking a firm stand on anything. And besides, the man can't count and seems to have been sleeping during his geography and history classes. Can we expect someone like that to handle our national budget?
I have even less faith in Mccain with his geriatric, bumbling, mumblings. I'd never be able to stay awake during his State of the Union speeches because of his monotone voice, at least George W. kept me amused with his blundering tales.
I vote we elect Robin Williams for President.
Will those new fan-dangled voting machines let us write him in?
Sunday, June 15, 2008
The phone rang on Friday and this little, excited, voice said,
"Nanaw, Nanaw, I gotta new puppy, him's Frankie!"
"Beans, is that you?"
"Yep, I gots a new puppy, Frankie, I wuv him!"
"Oh Wow! A new puppy, where did you get him, did you go to the forest and find one of those lost puppies and bring one home?"
"Nope, I got him at da Wal Mart."
(Nanaw's laughing out loud by now)
"At Wal Mart? You found a puppy at Wal Mart? You bought him at the store? Beans, let me talk to your Momma."
Once Jerri captured the phone from Beans, who was through talking anyway beings that she had a new critter to "pway wit", she told me that they really had gotten the puppy from outside the local Wal Mart where someone she knew had a whole box full, and was trying to find new homes for them. So, y'all meet Frankie.
The winter wheat harvest is almost done around here. My head's been stopped up cause of all the smoke from the fields the farmers are burning. A few of them practice no-till where they just plant in the wheat stubble, but there are many more of the ones who practice idiocy (like we need all that pollution).
Anyway, what I'm leading up to is the reason I'm posting these cloud pictures. I call them wheat clouds because they form when they're burning the wheat stubble. There will be anywhere from 3 to a dozen of these clouds in the sky every time you look. I'll be glad when they're all done.
A few more blooms are popping open around the yard. This sunflower grew from a seed dropped from the bird feeder so it's our first bloomer this year. Zach's multicolored ones will be blooming later on, I hope. Above the sunflower is one of the blooms on the rose moss from the flower boxes. I love these little delicate blooms and especially love all the different bloom colors.
Happy Father's Day to all the Daddies out in blogland!!
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Thank you for being our Hostess this week Miz Cindra!
Friday, June 13, 2008
over there ------------------------------------------------->
(that was a good idea Miz Cindra) so everyone can click and view what everyone came up with.
First of all, I've got to tell you that I don't live within the city limits of Helena-West Helena, AR (thank God!), but it's the closest town of any size to us, so it's where we have go to shop, do our banking, and other stuff you need to visit a town for. What goes on there has a lot of effect on our lives out here in the county. Here's the deal,
Mayor J. Valley of Helena-West Helena, AR, during one of his lightening bolt whiffs of self-righteous, self-serving, wisdom, decided he was tired of hearing complaints about the housing conditions of the stray dogs collected by the city so he gives the order for them to be taken out and released in the St. Francis National Forrest which is out in the county. (near the swimming and boat ramp area).
When you view the video about his newsworthy actions, be on the look out for the lady who's standing on one of the city streets, many of those buildings on that street are empty and there are empty buildings all over the city, some of which might become suitable for renovation to become a shelter for those poor abandoned animals.
If you click to view one of the Mayor's blogs/websites, you'll see that he posted a slide show of the stray animal facilities in Forrest City, AR. (I don't quite understand why he did this, due to this being a city located along Interstate 40, and who's major income from tax revenues comes from travelers from across the U.S., which in no way compares to the lack of tax revenues Helena-West Helena will always have, (even though their sales tax rate is among the highest in the U.S.) Is Mayor Valley suggesting that his city should build such a facility? Are there funds left over for such a facility after the generous pay raise he asked for, and received, recently? If there are funds, is he willing to allow a facility to be built with them?
Hell yes the conditions these animals were being kept in were horrible, the cages were dirty, the animal's water was dirty. But, according to the Mayor, there were only about 13 animals in all, so WHY were the conditions so miserable? Seems to me, one person, spending an hour or so a day, could have cleaned the cages and made sure there was fresh food and water for these poor pups until arrangements could be made to better house them. (and by the way, the local Wal Mart donates all their food).
Anyway, I'm gonna let you folks click the links and read about all this for yourselves. It's sad, it's horrible, the man's an idiot and he deserves whatever he gets. I just hope he gets it in spades!
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Link the person(s) who tagged you~ (I would have but I broke the rules)
Mention the rules on your blog~
Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours~
Tag 6 following bloggers by linking them~ (still breaking rules cause you're ALL tagged if you haven't already done this :-)
Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger’s blogs letting them know they’ve been tagged (see above broken rules)
1. I don't like having dirt, or dust, or mud, on my feet, yet I rarely wear shoes indoors. I'll go freaking crazy if someone spills salt, or cornmeal, or sugar, etc... in the floor, fails to clean it up, and I step in it. If I get dust on my feet, I'm antsy and feel icky until I can wash my feet to get it off.
2. I have to spend time resting before I can go to bed and fall asleep and when I get up, I'm not actually awake until I've had coffee and time to stare into space for about 30 minutes. If you want a fight, speak to me before I've had my zombie stare ritual.
3. I don't like being in a room with the doors closed. The first thing I do in the morning is open my front door, there's a clear glass storm door so there's protection from the elements. I can't sleep if my bedroom door is closed. I do not like feeling closed in, at all!
4. I believe I have a sign on my forehead that's invisible to most people but is visible to total strangers who need to tell their problems to someone. For more times than I can keep count of, I've been told the life stories of people I'd never seen or heard of before and have never seen or heard from since. This has happened in places like Dr's offices, airports, and even at a check-out line in a shopping mall once. I hope they've felt better after relating their problems to me but I gotta tell you, sometimes it's totally freaky.
5. I don't handle grief well, even my own. I feel helpless that I can't make things better for people who have lost loved ones, and never know what to say. I also feel other's pain very deeply, so I rarely attend a funeral. I rarely attend weddings for many of the same reasons.
6. I think faster than I can talk. This often leads to me forgetting, in mid-sentence, what I'm discussing with someone.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
The photo below is of the Phillips County Regional Library. They're going to move it into another building later but I'm sure going to miss this old place. It was built in 1891 and has all atmosphere, the smells, cubbyholes, and dark corners that I remember from libraries that I've been in here, in the U.S. and in England. Another building was built and attached to this one (not seen in this photo) around 1920 to house the Phillips County Museum. I suppose they will remain in the building.
I'm going to have to sit these children down and have a little discussion about using their imaginations to entertain themselves a little this summer, cause trying to think of ways in which I can keep them entertained, is exhausting!
Zach and MeriKate nitpicked and argued with each other through the chores I had to do for the improvement district and through the other stops when we finally drove into town. I stopped the truck, at least twice, with threats to put them out and make them stand on the side of the road until a new Nanaw took pity on them and stopped to pick them up. At one point I also threatened to tie their feet behind their head. I even used one of my old threats of "beating them naked and hiding their clothes"! They've wised up about the threats and none of them stopped the bickering and arguing for more than a second or two. It was a relief when I could finally allow them to escape the confines of the truck.
But that didn't last all day.
Mr. John Darnell, a local Civil War expert, presented the children's program about the Battle of Helena at the Phillips County Regional Library in Helena. The little children's reading room was almost full with children sitting on the floor, and Grandma's, great-Grandma's, Momma's, and other visitors, sitting on the child-sized wooden chairs around them.
Zach and the adults really enjoyed all the information that Mr. Darnell was so knowledgeable of, the younger kids mostly enjoyed being about to touch and try on so many of the Civil War items he was showing them. Every hat was tried on (except for this one child who's Momma insisted, in a loud voice, that he not put another person's hat on his head.) and every item was touched and smelled by the kiddies. You could tell that Mr. Darnell really knew his stuff by allowing the kids to do this, because little children will forever remember touching and trying on that Confederate, or Union soldier's hat, but they won't remember, for very long, all the details about the discussion surrounding it.
Next week we'll be going back to the library to see a Magic show.
MeriKate and Jilly Beans decided they'd come spend the night with us, so after Zach's Tae Kwon Do class, we stopped by the grocery store and arrived home a little after 7. The kids took sandwiches and had a picnic on the swing outside while Nanaw ate a sandwich with the pouting PopPop who, I reckon, was upset because I wasn't at home all afternoon cooking him a 3 course meal. (that's ok, I'll feed him up tonight with a load of spicy food that'll give him gas for days and that'll shut him up, or at least give me a little revenge for him daring to say anything).
After we get a few chores done this morning, I'm going to put out the drawing paper, crayons, and colored pencils and instruct the kiddies to draw Nanaw something bright and colorful. That should keep them busy for an hour or two.
Now, I'm off to mop the kitchen floor. I hope everyone had a great day yesterday and has a super-duper Wednesday!
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Well, making fridge magnets out of clothes pins and odds and ends I gathered up kept Zach and MeriKate busy for a little while this morning. I manned the glue gun and didn't even glue my fingers together although I did drip some of that hot stuff on my fingers a time or two. I've got to reinforce the magnet backings though, the magnets I had weren't strong enough for the weight of the clothes pins so Jami picked some up in town that should do better.
Tomorrow we're going to get our chores done in the morning, then I have to go to the Improvement District to write a few checks for them and pick up a loan application for some pumps they need to finance. After that, a stop at the bank to do their banking, then we'll head into town so the kids can hear a talk about the Civil War at the library. We'll spend the rest of the afternoon visiting Jerri and the Chicklets, then on to Tae Kwon Do. Hopefully we'll be home by a little after 7 tomorrow evening.
I hope everyone had a great day today.
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Anyway, hopefully I'll feel better tomorrow because MeriKate will be here bright and early.
I've been digging through old craft supplies so that we can make some clothespin photo/message holders tomorrow. That should keep Zach and MeriKate busy, without fighting, for an hour or so.
Saturday, June 07, 2008
Alexis with her first catch. I think she caught 3 or 4 little fish and ended up winning a bike in her age group for the most caught.
Friday, June 06, 2008
James was given this mantle clock by his Aunt after his Uncle died. It must be wound with a special key.
This key opens my son's gun cabinet. Jerri keeps the key on this little dude's sleeping stand.
Miz Nita over at Red Tin Heart is our challenge hostess this week and she chose "KEYS" as our challenge topic this time. I've been looking everywhere for keys!
Ok, now I'm off to see what the other's have come up with for this challenge.
Thursday, June 05, 2008
I'm on a search for more KEYS!
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Two hillbillies walk into a bar. While having a shot of whisky, they talk about their moonshine operation.
Suddenly, a woman at nearby table, who is eating a sandwich, begins to cough, and, after a minute or so, it becomes apparent that she is in real distress.
One of the hillbillies looks at her and says, 'Kin ya swallar?'
The woman shakes her head no.
Then he asks, 'Kin ya breathe?'
The woman begins to turn blue and shakes her head no.
The hillbilly walks over to the woman, lifts up her
dress, yanks down her drawers and quickly gives her right butt
cheek a lick with his tongue. The woman is so shocked that she has a
violent spasm and the obstruction flies out of her mouth.
His partner says, 'Ya know, I'd heerd of that there 'Hind Lick Maneuver'
Jerri sent me this picture she took of me scootin on the scooter at the zoo the other day. Y'all laugh all you want, I am!
Sunday, June 01, 2008
We had so much fun! The kids were almost little angels and I made it fine with the walking and the heat for the first few hours before I finally gave up and rented one of those scooter things to tool around on. I was able to keep up after that.