Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I'm a nervous flyer and hubby and I are winging our way to Florida today.

I wish Chesley Sullenberger was piloting my plane.

Monday, February 16, 2009


According to NASA 71% of the Earth's surface is covered in water.
Most of it are oceans and only 3% is fresh water. As far as the freshwater goes 18% of it is located in the Great Lakes with Lake Superior alone accountable for about 9% of it.
I don't know why Lake Michigan was left off of this chart and that's the only Great Lake I haven't visited.

I live about 12 miles from Lake Ontario. If you look at the word Ontario on the map I'm right at that little inlet by the letter "a" and that's where the previous post's pictures came from. But this post isn't about freshwater, that's for another day when I'll talk about why I think water will replace oil as the next global crisis.

What I'm amazed at is that with so much ocean out there two nuclear-armed submarines managed to crash into each other.

From the article...
This is the most severe incident involving a nuclear submarine since the sinking of the Kursk in 2000 and the first time since the Cold War that two nuclear-armed subs are known to have collided," said Kate Hudson, head of Britain's Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.
I bet she takes a lot of grief with that name especially if she's, ahem, not good looking.

HMS Vanguard came into service in 1993, has a crew of around 140 and typically carries 16 Lockheed Trident D5 missiles. Under government policy, British nuclear submarines carry a maximum of 48 warheads. At least one of Britain's four submarines is on patrol and ready to fire at any given time. France's Le Triomphant carries 111 crew and 15 nuclear missiles, according to defense analysis group Jane's.

I wouldn't do well in a submarine, I don't like to be under water even in a swimming pool. Anyway, read the whole article here, it's interesting and scary and will make you too wonder how this can happen.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Wednesday I leave for 8 days in Florida.
Saturday I had a pedicure and manicure and I've dug out my sandals.
I am so ready to go.
While it was cold today the sun was shining and it was a beautiful day
for snapping some pictures with our new camera.
This is Irondequoit Bay from the Bay Bridge. The little dots out on the ice are ice fisherman. I went ice fishing once and never again.
On the shore of Lake Ontario.

A couple looking for treasure on the beach.

I love this bridge although it's prettier in the summer with leaves on the trees.

This is a little inlet by the boat launch where the swans, Canadian geese and ducks hang out in the open water.

Did you know that swans mate for life? These birds made me think of a book I read to my fifth grade class a few years ago, The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White.

Happy Valentines Day

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines Day

Monday, February 09, 2009

What a Day!

My little friend Johnny continues to frustrate me on a daily basis but I've really become attached to this kid. It breaks my heart to know that his mother and grandmother who is his primary caregiver do not get him the help he deserves. There is no doubt that has issues. He sometimes lives in a fairyland in his imagination. He's obsessed with fairies, has verbal outbursts, defiant at times, obsessed with the color yellow, doesn't relate well to his peers, can be physical with peers, makes little eye contact. At school we're making progress on some of this.
I know at home he is nagged relentlessly because of his behavior. I've only been in the presence of grandma twice and both times she never spoke nicely to him and was on him for everything. There are tensions in his home between mother and grandmother. We went on a field trip this past week and I sat with him on the bus. He told me that "his mother is stupid and can't do nothin' right". In the ten years I've been in the school I've never heard a child say anything like that about their mother. I believe he is parroting his grandmother and how sad is that? I can see why he would retreat into a fantasy world at times.
We've been working hard with him at school and have made some progress. I can get him to do some work most days and have gotten some of the other students involved with him at playtime. That involves me too as I've become a great butterfly cutter outer. Kids will come to our table at playtime and decorate butterflies I cut out of construction paper and he does interact with them.
There are days when I can do nothing for him, he's in a mood, very stubborn and mischievous but Friday we had a wonderful day. It started out rocky because we had P.E. and he doesn't like it. I go with him and try and get him to participate. Each gym class the teacher has the kids do some warm ups to music like galloping, skipping, jogging, monster walking etc. I spoke to the teacher and suggested we add some sort of twirling or spinning or even come up with a fairy type movement. It worked wonders. He laughed and enjoyed himself and was up for the next part of the class. We returned from P.E. and sat down to do some work which he did. Then it was time for reading buddies from third grade.
The teacher and I were standing on the other side of the room watching Johnny and his reading buddy read at a table when Johnny looked over at me. I caught my breath! His face was beaming, he was smiling at me and we shared a connection, like we were in on a little secret. The teacher was amazed and said to me, "he loves you!" Even writing about it now has brought me to tears. Happy tears. That brief moment has made up for every hard time I've ever had with him. I hope he knows I love him too.

Sunday, February 08, 2009


I can't convey enough
that I am so ready for this winter to be over and spring to begin.

But some tulips from the grocery store are the next best thing.
I plan on buying some every week until April.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Sound the Alarm

When I was a kid whenever there was a fire call the sirens went off at the fire house. You don't hear that anymore in these days of pagers and cell phone communication. Some firehouses still do blow the siren at noon.
We happen to be in traffic right in front of one of the local ones when it went off today. Notice the temperature. We're having a heat wave. Earlier this week it was down in the single digits.




Friday, February 06, 2009

Six is more than enough

I try hard not to be judgemental about most things (but not baby killer Casey Anthony) and waited to hear from Nadya Suleman, 33, the mother of the California octuplets. She finally talked and she's got issues. Big time.
I don't fault anyone for wanting a child or five but this woman is over the top. Suleman already had six children ages 2 - 7 years old when she decided she needed to have more. She is an unemployed single mother living with her parents. I'm sure she will love these babies but what was she thinking?
Let's look at her history. In 1999 she was injured on the job at a mental hospital when she was hit in the back with a desk during a riot. She worked very little after that. From 2002 - 2008 she collected $165,000. in disability insurance payments. Suleman stated that "the injury left her in constant pain". These were the years that her original six children were born. According to Suleman she suffered from depression after the injury that led to the disillusion of her marriage. That first baby, "lifted her spirits". In December of 2001 another pregnancy apparently aggravated her existing back condition. Did is stop her? Hell no.
Suleman goes on to say about her own childhood and the fact that she was an only child, "I just longed for certain connections and attachments with another person that...I really lacked, I believe growing up". She went on to call her childhood as "pretty dysfunctional".
I'm reading between the lines here and am getting the vibe that she's blaming her parents for not giving her a sibling so she has to fill her life with children. Had she had a sibling she wouldn't have this fixation about having children.
As I said, Suleman lives with her parents and they help take care of her six children. As you can see her father is no spring chicken. Now she has fourteen for them to help with. How do they do it. Having one kid is expensive let alone fourteen. Now add in the cost of diapers. A package of 252 newborn size Pampers cost $40.69, that's about .16 per diaper at Babies "R" Us. Newborns pee a lot, say you're going through approximately 10 diapers a day X 8 = 80 diapers a day, 560 diapers a week. That's about $100.00 per week on just diapers and they only get more expensive as the baby grows. There's no way she can breast feed all of these babies so a case of powdered Enfimal formula (6 cans in a case) is $162.00 I have no idea how much of that she'll need. This is just their immediate needs. Throw in clothes, food, health care and every little expense that kids have and WOW.
I understand the need for a child and having to use medical science to have one. That's how I had mine. All of Suleman's 14 children were in vitro and fertilized with the sperm of the same man, a friend of hers. She said, "she hoped that when he's ready, he would be in the lives of her and her children". I can only roll my eyes at that one".
I don't really understand how a medical doctor (the same dr. each time) can think it was a good idea to transfer six embryos. Two of the embryos spilt to add up to 8 babies. Not to mention he knew she already had six kids.
Don't get me wrong, I love children. If number two son hadn't almost killed the two of us I would have had one more. I'll watch her interview coming up on Sunday and maybe I'll change my mind but I think this woman is nuts.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

We're on a roll and not a good one

You know those old adages like when it rains it pours and things happen in threes.
Well I can attest to the fact that they're true.
The past several weeks have been very expensive and the budget is busted.
January 19 - Number 2 son has four impacted wisdom teeth extracted by an oral surgeon for a cost of over $1500.00 Insurance paid about 2/3 of that.
January 29 - Honda CR-V that's less than two years old had to have four new tires put on it.
February 5 - Wake up to absolutely no hot water. The only water we had was pretty damn cold since it was only 5 degrees outside.
The traitor, the old water heater. Notice the wet floor.
Draining the old tank.
What a lovely shade of rust the water is.

Allow me to introduce our new $649.00 water heater. The only good thing is that it didn't crap out in two weeks when hubby and I are in Florida (where it better be at least 70 degrees) and number two son is home house and dog sitting.

Monday, February 02, 2009

The price of gas...
is creeping up again.
The lowest it got down to was $1.74 about two weeks ago.
Since then it's been climbing steadily.
Our house hates winter. We have to have heat tape on the roof to keep the ice from damming up under the shingles and leaking inside. Every so often hubby has to go climb the ladder and chop it off. Over the weekend believe it or not that big ball of boiling gas that's 93 million miles away from Earth was out so it softened the ice up some. On the other hand it was so damn bright it gave me a splitting headache while out driving around. No, I don't have any sunglasses.
Are you tired of snow pictures yet?
Me too.
We're running out of room to put the snow.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

I'm in the pool...

the Superbowl pool that is. I really don't care who wins, I guess maybe the Steelers. We were out to dinner last night and there was a mom and dad with 2 boys all wearing Steelers jerseys. They looked cute. I just want the final score to be our numbers.

Just what a diabetic needs, a big chocolate chip cookie slathered with frosting.

I'll have just a small piece.