Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Oh, Dear Refrigerator, Why Can't You Cook?

Or you could call this post, plainly and simply...procrastination. I was on a roll yesterday. Today, however, is a totally different story. I-just-don't-wanna-do-anything...

The greens are washed and in the fridge. The sweet potatoes are baked and in the fridge waiting to be made into the casserole. The cranberry sauce is chilling. The marshmallow/pineapple stuff has been made and is in the fridge. The pie crusts are done and in the freezer waiting... the cornbread has been made. All the spices are out on the counter, so I won't forget one. The giblets are all done and cut a bag in the fridge. The stock is in the fridge waiting for me to skim the grease off of it. The recipes are all laid out. The turkey is in the sink, in cold water, waiting for it's new batch of cold water to help it thaw so it can be salted overnight. The rolls are in the freezer, ready to go. All the dishes are done, the last load is waiting to be put up. The stove and oven are clean. The counters are all clean and the floor has been mopped. There are two loads of laundry waiting to be put up and another in the dryer waiting to be folded and put up. The cat box has been changed and all the garbage is at the road waiting on pickup, then the cans need to be brought back to the garage.

So...I could go take a nap, huh? You know the only thing I hate about doing all this? I'm starving, the fridge is chock full and there's nothing to eat. But I do it all for the boy. It's what he lives for (not really, but his feelings would be terribly hurt if I didn't do it) and really the only thing he asks of me. It makes it all worthwhile when he comes home from work and tells me they had their Thanksgiving dinner at work yesterday and sighs and says "mom, you sure have me spoiled" :)

I'm thinking, a grilled cheese sounds pretty good about now, so I'm going to go do that then chill and watch the View and some soap operas for a bit before I get back at it. I think I've earned it, don't you?

Monday, November 24, 2008

WOO HOO!!!!!!!

While I don't have it in my hands as of yet, IT'S OFFICIALLY UP AT THE BOARD--I HAVE A LICENSE TO PRACTICE SOCIAL WORK!!! Yep, that's me..."prin" LSW :) It was a long time coming and despite all the unmailed test scores and various other delays I finally have it and have already applied for a state job...wish me luck and keep me in your prayers because I-am-so-ready-for-this!

Also, I just want to take this time to thank everyone who helped me get to this know who you are :) Without all your love and support, especially with this blog, I surely would have lost my sanity before now with all the waiting. Thanks again!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Saturday, November 22, 2008

If I was 20 Years Younger, I Might be in Love...

Ran across these jewels over on Feministe tonight and I think Lauren might be right when she warns that these might trigger fangeeks...

"Friend of Feministe Jay Smooth was named one the Sexiest Men Living in 2008 in Salon’s 3rd annual awards this week, rounding out a list of men who “make us giddy for all the right reasons.” Chuck your Brad Pitts, your George Clooneys, and your Matt Damons, and give me a heaping helping of a confident, feminist dude who challenges his audience to think deeper about the world and the culture around us and does so with impeccable style and a subtle sense of humor."

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Postcards from Amerah--Heads Up on this Seasons Giftcards

This was forwarded to me from Amerah just a few minutes ago. Thanks!

"I wanted to give everyone a heads up that if you tend to give gift cards around the holidays, you need to be careful that the cards will be honored after the holidays. Stores that are planning to close after
Christmas are still selling the cards through the holidays even though
the cards will be worthless January 1. There is no law preventing them
from doing this. On the contrary, it is referred to as 'Bankrupcy Planning). Below is a partial list of stores that you need to be cautious about.

Circuit City (filed Chapter 11)
Ann Taylor- 117 stores nationwide closing
Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug ,and Catherine's to close 150 stores nationwide
Eddie Bauer to close stores 27 stores and more after January
Cache will close all stores
Talbots closing down specialty stores
J. Jill closing all stores (owned by Talbots)
Pacific Sunwear (also owned by Talbots)
GAP closing 85 stores
Footlocker closing 140 stores mo re to close after January
Wickes Furniture closing down
Levitz closing down remaining stores
Bombay closing remaining stores
Zales closing down 82 stores and 105 after January
Whitehall closing all stores
Piercing Pagoda closing all stores
Disney closing 98 stores and will close more after January.
Home Depot closing 15 stores 1 in NJ ( New Brunswick )
Macys to close 9 stores after January
Linens and Things closing all stores
Movie Galley closing all stores
Pep Boys Closing 33 stores
Sprint/Nextel closing 133 stores
JC Penney closing a number of stores after January
Ethan Allen closing down 12 stores.
Wilson Leather closing down all stores
Sharper Image closing down all stor~s
K B Toys closing 356 stores
Loews to close down some stores
Dillard's to close some stores

Kathleen Schanz
Sunoco, Inc. - Legal Department
1735 Market Street, 27th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Phone (215) 977-3284
Fax (866) 611-9928

Keith Olberman on Gay Marriage--Watch This!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Emily's List Success Stories

Here's the latest email from Ellen R. Malcolm, President of Emily's List. I know I wear my Emily's List bumper sticker with pride. How about you?

"Things are changing in America. Doesn't it feel great?

I can't thank you enough for everything you did to make this happen.

As you watched the results come in, I hope you took a moment to appreciate the impact that you made in the election of Barack Obama, and in the many tight Senate and House races that we were able to win with your help. I feel proud and thankful every day for the difference that we made together, and I am so deeply grateful for your support.

As with other historic moments in our lifetimes, I don't think we'll ever forget where we were on election night 2008. All over the country, change, at last, was in the air, and we have supporters like you to thank for it. We’ve put together a collection of snapshots and footage from election night and post-election coverage from some of our most exciting races so you can really see what a difference you made.

Click here to watch the video

Each election cycle, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the support that EMILY's List donors provide again and again for our candidates and the WOMEN VOTE! program. This year, you outdid yourself, and our entire nation is better for it.

Thank you again for your incredibly generous support and the difference you have made.

Warmest regards,
Ellen Malcolm

Ellen R. Malcolm

:) Postcards from Amerah :)

37 Days until Christmas!!!!

The Time is coming !!Ho Ho HO
Let it snow!
~You have just been hit with an e-mail snow ball!~

It's the start of.....

Snow Ball Fight
2008 &2009
Rule to this game:

You can NOT hit someone who has already hit you!


go out there and get as many people as you can,
before they get you!

I got you first! and you can't get me back!
Nanee - Nanee - Nanee!

We do not stop playing because we grow old;

we grow old because we stop playing.

Never Be The First To Get Old!!!!!

Grandad's Meme

Grandad over at Head Rambles woke up grouchy this morning and his post turned into this meme:

Grandad’s Meme
Name six people you would like to see smacked with a shovel/lump hammer.

Here's my six...

rosie o’donnell
elizabeth hasselbeck
bush/cheney as one
katie couric
elizabeth hasselbeck
anyone with the last name lohan

yeah, i think you are supposed to tag some people but since I have precious few readers and don't want to lose the meme if it would make you feel better this morning :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

OK, here I am in all my glory...

For years I have purposefully not posted pictures or videos of me...didn't want to scare anyone off. Click the title link and it will take you to the very first picture of me on the web. I wish they would hurry up and post the rest of the videos because they are much better. This was the first one we did. The boy was too far away from us but you can hear it if you turn up your volume. So, I never said I was bubbly, did I? :)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Switching Gears--Postcards from Amerah

This arrived this morning from my dearest friend Amerah. After yesterday, I really needed to see some beauty in this world. Aside from the beauty of the subject, the Obama's love story, this has got to be Clay Aiken's best work.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ok, You are Still Lurking...

You can find the actual comment left by AIG Blog Relations by clicking on the title link to this post, it's the last comment, but if you click on AIG Blog Relations when you get to the page you will get an error message...what's up with that? Beats me.

Hey, AIG...Stop Lurking!

Over the course of these past few days since I posted about your recent escapades you have lurked around on my site over five times and if the last time I posted is any indication, you will be here many more times before all is said and done. I already know you have people dedicated to find out what is being written about you in the blogosphere, hence..."AIG Blog Relations".

If you have a new justification for why, at the same time you were begging us to give you yet another 40 billion, your executives were yet again, getting spa treatments, playing golf, and god only knows what else, then speak up. Oh, and not the same ole, same ole...I already heard your latest justification on the news. Which by the way did not really explain why you felt the need to hide the fact that you were having a conference in a posh resort.

Believe me I do understand that your executives might need some stress relief. I need the same stress relief every time I have to go to the grocery store and stand there in the isle trying to decide what I have coupons for, whether I can afford that big pack of friggin hamburger meat or if I have to forego that because we need toilet paper or laundry soap, then I too, feel that same aching need for a deep tissue massage or a nice relaxing round of golf....friggin, not...

You say some of your employees have been receiving death threats? I am not surprised. There are so many people out there who have lost everything and are finding it hard to even get in to a food bank so they can feed their children. I understand your arrogance and complete disregard for others will not allow you to comprehend this scenario, but you need to hear me when I say...You People Need to Stop! Don't you have friggin conference rooms in your own corporate building? Have you ever heard of catering? Or better yet, pot luck? Somehow, in the middle of my rant, I just laughed out loud at that vision....corporate execs in $5000 suits schlepping a big ole' crock pot of beef stew all the way from the parking garage...cracks me up...

In my world one does not spend money one does not have. One does not buy that new pair of shoes if one's rent has to be paid or one's children have to be fed. One does not go on vacation, even a learning one, if one is begging the government and the taxpayers to pull one out of the friggin jam their own arrogance got them into.

I'm sure in your mind you think I could not possibly know what I am talking about or truly understand the scope of the situation, so that is why I'm asking you to stop lurking and justify yourself....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Alice Walker on President-Elect Obama's First Visit to the White House

Go read the article. It's beautiful.

AIG is at it AGAIN!!! Dear Lord, Please Make it Stop!!!

Click the title link for the reponse I got from AIG blog relations...remember that? Where they assured me they recognized the problem and were doing everything in their power to put an end to it? Not only are they asking for more money but here's the article about their latest retreat. On ABC News last night the reporters discovered that AIG had told the Phoenix resort to disguise their presence...

"Even as the company was pleading the federal government for another $40 billion dollars in loans, AIG sent top executives to a secret gathering at a luxury resort in Phoenix last week.
Brian Ross investigates the insurance giant's "seminar" at a posh resort.

Reporters for (KNXV) caught the AIG executives on hidden cameras poolside and leaving the spa at the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort, despite apparent efforts by the company to disguise its involvement.

"AIG made significant efforts to disguise the conference, making sure there were no AIG logos or signs anywhere on the property," KNXV reported.

(click here to see the full KNXV report)

A hotel employee told KNXV reporter Josh Bernstein, "We can't even say the word [AIG]."

A company spokesperson, Nick Ashooh, confirmed AIG instructed the hotel to make sure there were no AIG signs or mention of the company by staff.

"We're trying to avoid confrontation, keep our profile low," said Ashooh. "Some of our employees have been harassed.""
Here's the the news video.

Makes me sick...I think it's time to use the "Contact" widget don't you?

Short Rant...

Two or three years ago the treehuggers (or drug companies) decided that albuterol inhalers were a major contributing factor in global warming (in fact, they made it sound like it was the single most detrimental contributing factor) because they are powered by chlorofluorocarbons which deplete ozone in the high atmosphere and as usual have decided to push us into using a completely ineffectual product, an inhaler powered by hydrofluoroalkane (HFA) compounds.

First, I think this is just the drug companies wanting to finance a new product and needing us to do it for them. Second, I do not now nor will I ever understand how an inhaled drug that goes directly into your mouth and subsequently your lungs contributes to the depletion of the ozone layer. But, as of January 2009, I will be forced to use an HFA type inhaler, against my will.

Here is where I want to tell you a story. I was at a human resources agency a couple of months ago and while I was waiting to be seen I was talking to this elderly lady and her son and her social worker. During the course of this conversation I watched this woman try to get enough medication from her HFA inhaler to get some relief (at least ten attempts). As far as I could tell she never did. Why, you ask? Because these types of inhalers do not propel the medication to where it needs to be. It merely goes to the back of the throat and stays there, never reaching the lungs. The only thing it does is cause throat irritation, which can lead to upper respiratory infections which are very bad for people already suffering from breathing difficulties.

And now, here is the absolute best, they are saying that we have to wash the damn thing regularly because not only are they outrageously expensive but without the washing they can clog and only deliver about half of their entire prescribed amount. That's for a 200 actuation metered inhaler, only about 100 gets delivered. They can also clog and only deliver partial doses at a time. Do you hear me swearing? Wash a friggin inhaler whose cap has always been on when not in use and then only by me?

I have avoided talking about this subject because I have been in denial plus I figured other people would be as livid as I was and do something about it...complain...and complain loudly. As always the masses have simply accepted what the drug companies have forced on us and not said a word. Well I'm saying it and saying it as loudly as my little blog will allow. I-DO-NOT-WANT-AN-HFA-INHALER!!!!! End rant.

Oh, and click the title link for the full article.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Free "Yes We Did" Sticker

Click the title know you want one :)

Here's your

It is simply amazing to me how much crap I've read in the course of these past four days. President-elect Obama, it seems, is expected to have already made good on all of his campaign promises. Can you say "instant gratification?" Geez...let the man get in office before you start with all the criticism. But first why don't you go here and simply tell him what you want, what your dreams are, rant, complain, or whatever you want to do. Being the kind of man that he is, he has provided you with a place to do just that. Do you know of any other president, ever, to even care, much less provide a convenient form to do it with? I think from now on I will be spending a good amount of time on that site. I will stop reading all the crap and just do what I want to do...believe.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Saw this on the news last night...took a minute to process...


Shoot, I forgot to include the link to the article where you can watch the actual video and hear the boys mother speaking about it and see the actual pain in her eyes that I am feeling. You can see it here or by clicking the title link.

For me, Wednesday morning was a bright and shiny new day. I was full of hope and dreams and a certain amount of satisfaction that I played a tiny part in the outcome. All day Tuesday, Wednesday and most of Thursday, I felt this way. This is one reason I wanted to get that first video posted (see below). It showed the exuberance of an entire side of town that doesn't normally have enough hope or belief in the system to even bother to vote. I was proud of the fact that out of 1.9 million registered voters in Mississippi 1.2 million of us (a record) believed/cared enough to go vote. Just to hear all those cars honking and seeing all the smiles on the faces as they honked was a miracle in itself and dammit, it brought tears to my eyes and even more important to the boy's eyes. When I saw that I knew I had done what I set out to do from his very raise a caring, socially conscious being. I know if I were to die tomorrow, he will be alright.

Then came the Thursday evening news and I had to come on back down to reality and realize that racism is still very much a living, breathing rabid animal. I cannot tell you the sadness that envelops me as I am about to post this article. I just want to go take to my bed, pull the covers over my head and sleep. Sleep...for long enough for change to actually happen. I can't do that, I know. I have to go on fighting for change until I die. It is my lot in life and I live with it. Ok, deep breath...hear is the article taken from WAPT's (our ABC affiliate) website...

"Some Pearl Students Told Not To Say Obama's Name

PEARL, Miss. -- The Pearl Schools superintendent said that a school bus driver and a coach were disciplined for allegedly telling students not to say President-elect Barack Obama’s name.

Reporters with 16 WAPT News received several calls from upset parents that said a school bus driver told the children on a Pearl school bus that if they said Obama’s name, they would be written up and taken to the principal’s office for disciplinary reasons.

Another parent said that a coach at Pearl Junior High School told students that if they speak Obama’s name, they would face expulsion.

Parents said the incident is sad as America begins a new presidency.

"They feel like they are afraid to say our president's name because they will get in trouble," mother Canishia Simpson said. "They shouldn't have to feel that way."

Simpson's son Reginald was one of two students removed from a Pearl school bus Wednesday morning.

Reginald Simpson said kids on the school bus were saying, "Obama is our president." That's when he said the bus driver told the kids not to say the president-elect's name because she didn't want to hear it.

"Somebody said, 'This is history, woman,'" Reginald Simpson said. "She pulled over and kicked me and the kid off the bus."

The two boys were left at Pearl High School. They were later taken to Pearl Junior High School, where they attend school.

"We teach our kids not to be racist, and here it is going on," Canishia Simpson said. "I feel hurt by this."

School officials looked at surveillance video from inside the bus. They told Canishia Simpson that the bus driver overreacted.

In a separate incident, a girl's basketball coach at Pearl Junior High School told students they would be suspended for saying Obama's name.

"I did have two incidents and the principals did review the bus driver tapes. It appears that some persons, out of disappointment and disillusionment with the election, may have been so frustrated that they said something inappropriate to students,” Pearl Schools Superintendent John Ladner said. “We have taken appropriate steps with the bus driver and the coach.”

Ladner would not say what disciplinary action was taken.

"This is what the whole election was about, to support someone," parent Venus Neagu said. "Now they are facing consequences for it."

Neagu's son Devin was on the bus Wednesday. He did not get kicked off, but his mother said she plans to confront school officials about the incident.

Both of the students kicked off the school bus were allowed to ride on Thursday. They won't face any disciplinary action from the school.

“As adults and professionals we are not going to deprive anyone of their excitement over the current election of President-elect Obama, or any other candidate,” Ladner said. “The whole nation was excited, and in no way and at no time will children be disciplined for saying the name of the president-elect of the United States. Any employee who would attempt to do that would be corrected and disciplined. We expect professional behavior, respect and demeanor of staff and students. It is unfortunate that some employees mishandled this situation but they have been disciplined and I have spent the day clarifying our policies."

Pearl's school superintendent said no child will be punished for saying Obama, Barack Obama or President Obama.

Ladner said this is a part of our history now, and students will learn it."

These were junior high school kids with justifiable exuberance...I just want to say "get a grip, bitches...slap, slap, punch" It's probably a good thing I wasn't on that bus or in that gym class. Disciplined, my ass. I personally think they should have both been fired on the spot with no compensation whatsoever. To me, it was terrorism, plain and simple.

**edit again**

Oh, and if you want to read a flip side to the issue and more, Pandagon has a great post up about it.

Don't worry about Rahm...Waxman is on it...

Let me start with a little history read in an AlterNet article here.

"Paying Wall Street bonuses was not supposed to be part of the plan. At least that's how Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson explained it to Congress and the American people. So, on Oct. 1, when the Senate, including Obama, approved the $700 billion bailout package, the illusion was that this would magically loosen the credit markets, and with taxpayer-funded relief, banks would first start lending to each other again, and then, to citizens and small businesses. And all would be well.

That didn't happen. Which is why it's particularly offensive that the no-strings-attached money is going to line the pockets of Wall Street execs. The country's top investment bank (which since Sept. 21 calls itself a bank holding company), Goldman Sachs, set aside $11.4 billion during the first nine months of this year -- slightly more than the firm's $10 billion U.S. government gift -- to cover bonus payments for its 443 senior partners, who are set to make about $5 million each, and other employees.

Whereas Wall Street may not believe in higher taxes for the richest citizens, it does believe in higher bonuses for the head honchos. No matter what the market conditions are on the outside, steadfast feelings of entitlement tend to prevail."

Below is an excerpt from the communication sent to Citigroup from Henry Waxman, Chariman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. The entire communication can be found in pdf form by clicking the title link.

"Press accounts report that the size of the bonuses could exceed $6 billion at some firms receiving
federal assistance.4
While I understand the need to pay the salaries of employees, I question the
appropriateness of depleting the capital that taxpayers just injected into the banks through the
payment of billions of dollars in bonuses, especially after one of the financial industry's worst
years on record. As one newspaper recently reported, "critics of investment banks have
questioned why firms continue to siphon off billions of dollars of bank earnings into bonus pools
rather than using the funds to shore up the capital position of the crisis-stricken institutions.,,5
To assist the Committee's investigation into this issue, I request that you provide the
following information and documents for your company as well as any affiliates or subsidiaries:
1. For each year from 2006 to 2008, the total compensation and average compensation per
employee, paid or projected to be paid to all personnel, broken down by salaries, bonuses
(cash and equity), and benefits; and a description of the reasons for the year-to-year
changes in these amounts.
2. For each year from 2006 to 2008, the number of employees who were paid, or are
projected to be paid, more than $500,000 in total compensation; the total compensation
paid or projected to be paid to these employees, broken down by salaries, bonuses (cash
and equity), and benefits; and a description of the reasons for the year-to-year changes in
these amounts.
3. For each year from 2006 to 2008, the total compensation paid or projected to be paid to
the ten highest paid employees, broken down by salaries, bonuses (cash and equity), and.
benefits; and a description of the reasons for the year-to-year changes in these amounts.
4. Documents sufficient to show all policies governing the granting of the bonuses to the
groups of employees referenced in items (1) to (3).
Please produce the requested information to the Committee no later than November 10,
2008. To the extent that 2008 year-end bonuses have not been finalized by that time, you should
notify the Committee as soon as those bonuses are determined and supplement your response
with updated information and responsive documents."

I don't know about you but I'm going to keep my "contact your representatives" widget handy...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The National Women's Law Center's Platform for Progress

Remember when it was said that we could celebrate our victory for about five minutes then we had to hit the ground running and go back to work? Here is just one example of what that meant. Click the title link for the full pdf.

National Women's Law Center"s Platform for Progress

Highlights of the program:

"Supporting Women in the Workplace
* Close the wage gap and ensure women are paid fairly
by passing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the
Paycheck Fairness Act, and the Fair Pay Act
* Improve benefits for workers by raising the minimum
wage, protecting overtime pay, expanding the Family
and Medical Leave Act, providing paid leave days,
and establishing parity for part-time workers
* Improve anti-discrimination laws so that women who
are subject to discrimination in the workplace can
receive fair compensation for their losses
* Break through the glass ceiling by expanding
opportunities for women in nontraditional fields and
at the highest levels of their professions
* Pass an inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination
* End discrimination in the military by establishing
gender-neutral, performance-based standards for all
military positions, ensuring a fair process for women
to challenge discriminatory actions, and repealing
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
Building Economic Security
* Ensure access to high-quality child care by requiring
that care meet basic health and safety standards,
funding statewide quality rating systems to promote
higher quality care, increasing the reimbursement rate
for child care assistance, supporting initiatives
targeted to expanding access to high-quality infant
and toddler care, doubling the number of children
receiving child care assistance, increasing the
Dependent Care Tax Credit, and increasing funding
for Head Start and Early Education
* Help women move out of poverty by increasing the
benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit, expanding
the Child Tax Credit, improving child support
enforcement, eliminating arbitrary barriers in the
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and
Supplemental Security Income programs, and
expanding access to unemployment insurance
* Protect and strengthen Social Security, the foundation
of women’s retirement income, by rejecting
proposals to divert Social Security revenues into
private accounts, raising additional revenues, and
improving benefits for low-income individuals
* Increase women’s retirement security by expanding
access to employer-based retirement plans,
establishing spousal pension rights in definedcontribution
plans, prohibiting gender discrimination
in the pricing of annuities, and making the Saver’s
Credit refundable
* Reform the tax system to promote fairness and ensure
adequate revenues for needed investments by ending
tax breaks skewed to the wealthiest Americans and
special interests, ending the preferential treatment for
income from investments over income from work,
collecting taxes owed by businesses and investors,
and ending unwarranted corporate subsidies
Improving Women’s Health
* Reduce the number of uninsured women by creating
a health care system that leaves no one out, provides
comprehensive benefits, is simple to use and
understand, and is sufficiently and fairly financed
* Increase funding for research and programs that help
to prevent and treat health risks for women and their
* Protect a woman’s right to decide to have an abortion
* Expand access to affordable birth control, including
emergency contraception
* Invest in comprehensive sex education and end
federal funding for abstinence-only programs
Improving Women’s Education
* Increase efforts to recruit girls to, and retain them in,
fields of study in which they are under-represented
and restore legal protections against unequal sexsegregated
* Ensure that students have the same legal protections
against sexual harassment as employees of schools
* Level the playing field for girls’ athletics
participation by requiring better monitoring and
restore requirements for schools to ensure equal
opportunities for female students
* Strengthen enforcement of anti-discrimination laws
by government agencies
* Reduce the school dropout rate for girls by requiring
schools to monitor dropout rates and provide dropout
prevention programs targeted toward the needs of
girls, including pregnant and parenting students
* Ensure adequate funding for education at all levels by
fully funding schools in low-income districts and
expanding financial aid programs for post-secondary
Guaranteeing Equal Rights
* Promote a fair and independent judiciary with
judicial nominees who have a demonstrated
commitment to fundamental rights
* Consult broadly during the judicial nomination
process and ensure Congress fully exercises its role
to advise and consent
* Enact a comprehensive federal ban on sex
discrimination and adopt the international
Convention on Elimination of all Forms of
Discrimination Against Women
* Fully fund domestic violence programs and ensure
victims have needed supports
* Strengthen protections against human trafficking
* Ensure fair treatment for immigrants"

Yes We Can--Yes We Did!

This morning I am a happy person! I did my part and while President-elect Obama did not carry my state---he almost did. This is an accomplishment of profound proportions. Georgia(52%-47%), Alabama(61%-39%), Mississippi(57%-43%), Louisiana(59%-40%). These are really significant numbers to me because they prove finally, that there is change coming here in the deep south and that makes me happy.

So normally I don't interject the boy into this blog because this is my deal, not his but I was just so proud of him yesterday I have to share one of the videos we shot. It's one of only two that have been uploaded so far. There will be others and yes even one with me in all my hugeness. I'll edit this post as they are uploaded but for now here is my boy...although after yesterday I think I must stop calling him "the boy" :)

Me and Mark (my mechanic, you know the one...the one that gave me the car I'm driving now and has kept me rolling all through school, awesome guy!)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Please Go Vote Today!

Before I go out to do my VideotheVote duties today I wanted to leave you with some links all taken from Mother Jones Magazine of places to go if you have problems voting:

"The most conventional way voters can report a problem is through a voter hotline, of which there are several. Several television networks host hotlines because they give the networks an early look at voting irregularities that may become major stories. CNN, for example, is operating 1-877-GOCNN-08, which offers to patch a caller through to his or her local voter registrar if necessary...

The voting rights coalition Election Protection is hosting 1-866-OUR-VOTE. The coalition, which bills itself as the "largest voter protection and education effort in the nation's history," has call centers in Washington DC and around the nation. Staff receiving calls forward legitimate problems to "tens of thousands" of volunteers on the ground nationwide, most of whom are lawyers, law students, or otherwise legally trained. Those volunteers have been instructed to build relationships with local election officials, which they can use to address voting problems before they have the opportunity to swing a local, state, or federal election. Almost 20,000 reports from concerned citizens have already been posted to Election Protection's online database . Major issues are blogged daily. Election Protection anticipates hundreds of thousands of calls leading up to and on Election Day. (Like Google, Election Protection also provides information on early voting, voter ID laws, and voting locations, customized to your location.)

More technologically savvy voters can report problems via Twitter or wiki. Twitter Vote Report allows users to send a text message to 66937 (MOZES) beginning with #votereport or to call 567-258-VOTE to submit a report by touchtone keypad. Election Protection also has Twitter capability. An election protection wiki hosted by the Center for Media and Democracy allows users to look up vote purgings and other challenges to voting rights on a state-by-state basis. offers a sortable election problem log. A voter suppression wiki investigates incidents of disenfranchisement and permits users to add comments.

Reports are already flowing in. CNN claims it has received 10,000 calls since mid-October. Election Protection says its hotline has received more than 50,000 since August. But it can be difficult to assess the reports that come in. In one typical instance, Mother Jones followed up with a voter complaint — made on our interactive map that allows users to share voting stories, problems, and solutions — that alleged newly registered absentee voters in Manhattan would not receive their ballots in time for election day. Multiple officials in the Manhattan board of elections assured Mother Jones that they had worked around the clock to make sure every newly registered voter would have the ability to exercise their rights before or on Election Day.

Despite the efforts of voting rights group to shine more light on voting nationwide, America will almost certainly be faced with a thicket of voter fraud and voter intimidation accusations after November 4, with no clear picture of which are realistic and which are overblown. The only way this election will not resemble 2000 and 2004, when Election Day was followed by months of howling, fair and exaggerated, about vote fraud, is for one candidate to win an electoral college victory so decisive that instances of fraud are dwarfed by a seemingly nationwide consensus by American voters.

Technology has made voter education easier and vote oversight stronger, but the only foolproof strategy to avoid vulnerabilities in the vote is to win big. If that's the case, complaints can be examined to improve the quality of future elections, but needn't be fought over to determine "who really won.""

This is your day America, go out and do your duty :)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Pioneer Thinking

Lately, I have been wanting to eliminate the chemicals from my life. I do this from time to time and should live by this code...chemical free, as I do feel so much better when I do. Pioneer Thinking is going to help me do just that and so much more :) Please check it out, I'm sure you will find many helpful remedies there for whatever ails you...I going to try these because when I start working I will be spending a fortune on hair color. If my gray came out with that lovely white streak or some such other beautiful combination then I wouldn't worry about it but no, each individual strand is partially gray in a haphazard random pattern and not only that but the rest of my hair didn't stay the same color but turned this really ugly black :( Did I mention that I can never find a color that suits me or if I do then, either the store doesn't have that color when I go back or, more likely, I can not remember what the name of the color was that I so loved. So, maybe these will work:

Covering Gray Hair Recipe
Homemade Hair Dye
By Purdue University

Wash your hair with one of the following rinses. Pour the selected rinse through your hair 15 times, re-rinsing with the same liquid. On the final rinse, wring hair, and leave for 15 minutes before rinsing with clear water.

Covering Gray: Simmer 1/2 cup dried sage in 2 cups water for 30 minutes, then steep for several hours. Apply to hair and leave on until dried. Then rinse and dry. Repeat weekly, until desired shade, then monthly to maintain color.

Sage And Rosemary Natural Hair Dye
By Teresa Smith

SAGE. I am sure you know that it is a healing herb and it relaxes as a tea. In a bath, it smells good and eases my breathing.

I make a strong 'tea' of Sage and a bit of Rosemary, strain it and refrigerate it, and before I wash my hair, I spray it on the base of the gray patches of hair, even have massaged it in. leave it for 5 - ten minutes and then wash as usual, and care for my hair as I normally do. After a few weeks of this (I do this almost daily), the gray is disappearing.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Witness: Photographers, Journalists, and Social Workers Respond to Tragedy

This looks very interesting:

Location: New York City
Event Date(s): December 3, 2008
Event Time: 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Speaker(s): Grace Christ, Donna DeCesare, Jack Saul, Bruce Shapiro
Quito Ziegler
Please RSVP.

"Unlike social workers or therapists—the witnesses of the helping professions—journalists and photographers function mainly to inform, interpret, and bridge rather than to help directly. Documentary photographers can inspire understanding and compassion with their images and can contribute to opening paths to assistance.

Yet, there are pitfalls and ethical challenges when documenting stories about communities or individuals who have been through traumatic experiences. This panel will explore ways to strengthen the impact of documentary practice, sharing knowledge and practices of inclusion across disciplines.

* Bruce Shapiro, Executive Director, The Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma (moderator)
* Grace Christ, Professor, Columbia University School of Social Work
* Donna DeCesare, Photographer and Associate Professor, University of Texas School of Journalism
* Jack Saul, Assistant Professor of Clinical Population and Family Health, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

This event is sponsored by the Open Society Institute Documentary Photography Project and the Columbia University School of Social Work.

DeCesare's exhibition Sharing Secrets: Children's Portraits Exposing Stigma is part of the Moving Walls 12 photography exhibition organized by the Open Society Institute and is currently on display at the Columbia School of Social Work. For more information about the Moving Walls exhibition, please visit

Columbia University School of Social Work
1255 Amsterdam Avenue
(between 121st and 122nd Streets)
Concourse Level, Room C03
New York, NY"