Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Facebook and Privacy Settings

Here is a post I didn't post because I know that there are a lot of people out there who would have something rude to say about it and I didn't want my post to become the next viral post to get a bunch of rude comments.  But I really do feel it needs to be said.

Since I can control the comments on my own blog I decided to write it here instead.  So, here is the unposted post:


This could start a firestorm, but I feel it must be said.  A bunch of my friends and family have been posting that privacy comment saying they will unfriend anyone who doesn't change their privacy settings...you know the one; and I just read a bunch of comments on the FB Q&A about how they are all upset that Facebook isn't private and how Facebook should be protecting our privacy.  Guess what!  Facebook isn't private, never was, and never will be.  And neither is the Internet.  Anything posted anywhere in "the cloud" can be seen, read, found....  If you don't want it seen, don't post it.  If you don't want it read, don't write it and post it online.  NO social media platform is private.  Don't be mad at Facebook because your comment or picture is seen by others....be mad at yourself for posting it.  I'm sick of hearing about how everyone is so upset that they posted something and it's all Facebooks fault that a bunch of people saw it.  Facebook didn't post it...you did!


I'm sure there are those that will have something to say about this.  Leave your comments if you would like.  I'll respect your opinion and would appreciate your respecting mine...even if we don't agree.

Here's the truth about privacy settings....


Saturday, February 16, 2013

What's Up with RED Peanut M&Ms?

I bought some peanut M&M's for an object lesson for my kids.  I also bought some plain M&M's to use in the lesson.  The lesson went well and the kids each participated.  (See Object Lesson Below) But, what confused me was the bag of Peanut M&M's.  Take a look at this and tell me if you see anything funny...

I opened the bag and had my girls sort them into jars.  I watched them and they did not eat any.  (Which I was surprised at, but they were excited for the lesson.)

Someone explain to me why there are about 11 Red, one jar of Orange, one jar of Brown, one jar and a little bit of Green, and Yellow and two full jars of Blue!  I think we got jipped out of some Red!

Here is the smaller bag of plain all sorted out.

As you can see there is a little more red than the others, but for the most part they are pretty equal.  I don't quite understand this, but I'm not going to buy more bags of candy to find out if this is always the case!


The lesson was about confidence.  Each of the girls choose a color and I gave them a little blurb to go along with it.  They were to then share any comments or examples they had about their topic.

ORANGE: Obedience

Confidence comes through making good choices over and over again. If you don’t believe me, think of this scenario: Have you ever passed a police officer when you were speeding or when your kids weren’t buckled? Compare that to passing him going the speed limit or when everyone was all buckled up properly. I bet you had more confidence as you passed him. And it is a lot less stressful isn’t it?

BLUE: Divine Nature

Knowing who you are and where you come from fosters confidence. Understanding your divine origin- that you are a literal child of God- that God is your Father- gives you security, certainty, perspective and purpose. It is empowering to know that God created us, loves us and trusts us.

BROWN: Doing Hard Things

Nothing builds confidence quite like doing something hard and making it through. My divorce and college graduation forever changed my level of confidence. To bring it to the kids level, I asked Elle, “How did you feel after you hiked Angel’s Landing?” When kids are pushed to do what they think they cannot do, they see themselves in a different light; their capacities increase and they learn to trust themselves.

GREEN: Learning New Skills

Every time you master a small skill your confidence grows. It could be just learning to tie your shoes or your multiplication facts, but the more skills you learn for yourself the more confident you are. And learning these skills takes practice- putting in your time; doing the work; you can’t be confident at a piano recital if you haven’t practiced.

RED: Physical Health

When you are stronger and healthier physically, you are stronger and healthier mentally. The spirit and the body are inextricably linked. When one is out of whack, the other suffers. Plus when you are physically healthy, you feel like you have the energy and capability to face whatever comes.

YELLOW: Looking Beyond Yourself

When you look beyond yourself to help and serve others, selfishness and self-absorption melt away. When you focus on others, you are less likely to think of your own weaknesses and your own shortcomings. And when you look for the good in others, you are more likely to see the good in yourself. Be kind and gentle with others and you will learn be kind and gentle with yourself.

This idea came from a cool blog I found called: "Raising Lemons"

The girls had a great time and we talked a lot.  One of the better lessons we have ever had!  Everyone had something to say and they have enjoyed having the peanut M&M's on the counter since.  No one has even tried or asked to eat them.  They are sitting there as reminder of a fun time we all had!

Try this at your house and tell me how it went!  And thanks "Raising Lemons" for the idea!


Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Mirror :: A Poem by my daughter

My 14 year old daughter is an AMAZING writer!  She really will be quite famous one day, I just know it!  Here is a poem she wrote yesterday, in about 5 minutes, during her Journalism Class at school.  She asked me if I would share it with all of you.

She would really love to hear what you think of her poem.  I think she doesn't believe me when I tell her how amazing she is, so please help me help my daughter love herself just a little more.


Why I QUIT the UBC!

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Sunday, January 13, 2013

There's a Whole In My Bucket!

Everyone has the same amount of time every day.  24 hours, 1,440 minutes every single day.  So, how is it that there are people who can get more done in a day than others?  Well, I've found the answer!  There's in a while in my bucket of time!  Somewhere there are minutes seeping out a little at a time.

Okay, okay, I know that isn't true of course... but it feels like it.  Do you ever feel that you have so much to do you want to forgo sleep and food just to get caught up?  Like you looked at the clock only a few minutes ago, but now all of the sudden several hours have gone by.  It's very frustrating.

So, my question to you today is, how do you schedule your day so you can get everything done?  How do you catch up if you get behind?

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P.S.  Found this super cute video today.  My kids have never heard this song.  LOL!  I remember singing it at camp every year.  There aren't very many videos out there of this song.  I may have my girls make one.  Pretty funny.


Saturday, January 12, 2013

My Short Story :: The Conversation

I've decided to share my short story for my blog post on this fine morning.  Would love to hear your thoughts.

The Conversation

"She cries.  All she does is cry."

"What are you talking about?  Who's crying?"

"That girl.  The one who was leaving here as you were coming in.  All she does is cry."

"I didn't see... Umm... Okay... What does she cry about?"

"I don't know what she's crying about.  That's the problem.  She doesn't talk anymore, she just cries."

"I'm confused.  What do you mean by 'she doesn't talk anymore?' Has she talked to you before?"

"Please, stop standing there in the doorway.  Come in and have a seat. I need your opinion anyway.  I'm at a total loss of what do do."

"Okay, go ahead.  Start from the beginning."

'Well, about a year ago this girl... let's call her Claire...

'Do you know anyone named Claire do you?

'Good, let's call her Claire.

'About a year ago, this girl... Claire, started coming to see me.  At first, she would talk to me about her family.  Her parents and brother died a short time before she stared coming.  I thought that was why she was here.  But, I'm not so sure about that now.

'She is very quiet and reserved.  It took her a while, but soon she stared giving me details about her childhood.  From what she told me, she grew up in a home nearby, had a loving family, and lived a very happy life, at least until the death of her family.  Her childhood is all she wants to talk about."

"That's sad.  Did she ever say anything about how her family died?"

"No. She seemed confused when I asked her about it.  She would just sit there with a blank look on her face for a bit, then just change the subject.  I don't think she is ready to deal with it yet. Even now, and like I said, I've been talking to her for about a year."

"Was her childhood the only thing she ever talked about?  What is she doing now?"

"At first it was.  Later, I was able to get her to tell me a little about what is happening in her life now.  She told me that she still lives in the home she grew up in.  The people that bought the house let her stay when they moved in.  Kinda strange really.

'Problem is, they essentially ignore her.  The only way she can get their attention is by playing the piano, loudly.  Sometimes they seem to hear her and respond, but most of the time, they act like she isn't even there."

"Really?  The piano you say?  Interesting.  So, when did she start crying?"

"It was about two months ago.  She was sitting where you are sitting now and she just started crying.

'Ha. Ha.  Very funny.  You don't need to move.  She didn't contaminate the couch or anything.

'Are you comfortable now?  Good.  Can I go on?"

"Sure, I'm listening.  But are you ever going to sit down or are you going to just keep pacing?"

"Anyway, I keep trying to get her to tell me why she's crying, but she never responds to me anymore.  After an hour, without a word, she gets up and walks to the door.  As I hold the door open for her, she walks right in front of me and looks me in the eyes for a few seconds.  Her eyes are so sad.  Then, she walks away.  I get the feeling I'm not helping her.  What do you think I should do?"

"We'll get to that later.  Tell me more about her appointments."

"Okay, well, she has been coming to see me every Tuesday morning at 9:00 for just over a year like I said.  She is my most reliable client.  The first time she came, she just showed up.  No appointment or anything.  My practice was still new so I was available.  I didn't even have a receptionist back then and had very few clients.

'She is here for every one of her appointments.  There has never been any discussion from either of us about her changing her visits."

"What is your opinion of her?"

"She is usually very calm and quiet.  She is not very talkative.  When I ask her about something she doesn't want to talk about, she changes the subject or acts like she didn't even hear me.

'She is sad and depressed for sure.  It's hearbreaking really.  I know she is a loving, kind, and gentle girl.

'I feel that more than anything, she just wants to be noticed and treated with kindness.  Heaven knows she isn't treated nicely where she lives.  She wants someone to talk to.  Someone who will listen to her and most importantly, respond to her."

"Does she talk about any other family besides her parents and brother?"

"No, she doesn't.  I know she misses them desperately."

"Tell me more about the people she lives with.  What does she do when she's at home?"

"She said the people aren't very kind to her.  They act like she isn't really there.  She will move something and they will move it back.  She tries to talk to them, but no one ever talks back to her.  Kind of rude if you ask me.  She feels like she's intruding sometimes.

'She doesn't spend much time with them.  She spends most of her time in her own room.  The same room that she has lived in her entire life.

'I asked her once why she has not moved somewhere else.  She said that she didn't feel like she can.  Like something is keeping her there.

'We didn't talk about it again after that.  Like I said, we generally talked about her childhood.  I think she feels closer to her family there and that's why she stays."

"Just out of curiosity, what happens when Claire comes to the office?"

"What does that have to do with anything?"

"Humor me.  Is there anything unusual about her coming and going?"

"It's the usual thing that happens with other clients.  I get into the office at about 8:45, and on Tuesdays Claire is already waiting for me.  She waits in the lobby while I get my things put away then I call her into my office.  Then we talk...  At least we used to talk, now she just cries.

'Now that you mention it, there is one peculiar thing that happens.  Hazel, my receptionist, gives me this odd look when I call Claire in.  It's sort of a look of pity, or... is it compassion?  I've often wondered why she does that and what it means."

'Also, when Claire leaves, Hazel doesn't say good-bye to Claire.  When other clients leave Hazel looks up, smiles and says good-by.  But when I walk Claire out Hazel doesn't even look up.  I should ask her about that sometime."

"Ummm...actually, Hazel is why I'm here.  She called me because she is worried about you."

"Me?  Why me?  I'm fine.  It's Claire we should be worried about.  I mean, what can I do to help her?  Do I tell her I can't help her and send her to another doctor?  Or, do I let her keep coming and watch her cry?  I feel so helpless!"

"Calm down.  Let me tell you why Hazel called me.

'She wanted to talk to me about you...and um... Rachael."


"Rachael... The girl we've been talking about...Claire....  her real name is Rachel, right?"

"Well, yes, but..."

"Wait... just listen.  For starters, I have to tell you that... well... I didn't see Rachael when I came in."

"What? ...  You didn't? ...  But she was in the lobby... How could you not see her?"

"Don't interrupt.  Like I said... I didn't see Rachael.  When I came in, there was no one in the lobby except you.

'Hold on... I need you to hear what I have to say.

'Good, it's about time you were sitting down.

'Hazel said that since she started you have told her to keep Tuesday mornings from 9:00 - 10:00 open for "Rachael." 

She said that on Tuesday mornings you come into the lobby at 9:00 and ask Rachael to come in and you go in your office... alone... and close the door.  Hazel said she has never seen Rachael.

'Sit back down...

'She said she could hear you talking during that hour... until about two months ago when everything went silent.  She said you would call Rachael in and she wouldn't hear anything for that hour.  Then you would walk out, open the front door, and go back in your office. 

'That's why she asked me to talk to you."

"But, how could she not see Rachael?  Hear her crying?  Some days she would sob so loudly for the entire hour."

"Hazel has been worried from the start.  After the first few times she would listen through the door to hear what you were saying. 

'Sit down!  I really need to you to listen."


"No! No talking.  Sit down.  This is important and will help you... and Rachael I hope.

'Thank you.

'From what little she could hear, Hazel started to put a few things together in her mind and she remembered something that happened a long time ago right here in this very building.

'Did you know that about 50 years ago the bottom floor of this building was a Hardware Store?

"No... I don't understand what..."

"Well, it was.  And the upper floors were used as the residence for the owner of the Hardware Store.  The owners were a husband and wife and they had two children.  A boy and a girl.  The girl lived in this very room.

'One night the Hardware Store caught on fire.  The family couldn't get out and they were all killed in the fire.  At the time of the fire, the boy was 16 and the girl was 19 years old.  The girls name was... Rachael."

"Oh my..."

"Hazel found a newspaper clipping about the accident.  There is a picture of the family.  Do you want to see it?"

"But... I don't... That's Rachel!  Oh my... but how?... why?..."

"You've been working in this building for more than a year.  Don't you ever talk to anyone else in the building?  Haven't you ever heard the piano in the lobby?  There are people who say this building is haunted.


'I don't have all of the answers to your questions.  But, I do believe that you have been talking to this girl.  I hope that she comes again."

"Yeah.  Me too."

"Oh... one other thing.  About two months ago... it was decided that this building will undergo major renovations.  The renovations will include the lobby, where that old piano is... and... um... sorry to tell you this, but your office will have a major overhaul.

'I know you haven't heard about it yet because you aren't part of that committee.  But, I thought I should tell you.  Maybe that's why..."

*One Week Later*

"Come in Rachael.  I'm glad you're here.

'Rachael... Um, I know what happened to you and your family.  I also know about the renovations and I'm worried about you.

'Okay, let's not think about that right now.

'Rachael, could you please tell me why you came to see me?"

"Because... You are the only one who sees me.  The only one who will listen to what I have to say.  You notice me and talk to me about things.  When I'm here I feel like someone again.  You make me feel like I really matter.  You are so kind to me.

'Thank you."

"You're welcome Rachael."



Thank you for reading my story!  

I'd love to hear your honest feedback.  What did you envision while you were reading?  Woman, man, both, one of each?  What kind of room did you imagine?  What did you think about the character Rachael?  Would you like to hear more of the story?


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Friday, January 11, 2013

Lucky Tails?

There is a stretch of Redwood Road that we drive everyday where there's an 80% chance of smelling a skunk and/or seeing a deer.  It's terrible!

For the last 2 weeks or so there was a skunk in the middle of the left turn lane.  No one ever drives there because there's no where to turn unless you want to drive into a field.

For some reason we always talked about that poor stinky skunk.  Maybe we should have named it.  Instead we just rolled up the windows and turned off the fan as we drove by.  Sometimes, well usually, I would hold my breath because I knew what was coming.

We also went on about how funny it would be to have a business card that said:

That would be so funny!  "What do you do for a living?" "I'm a lawyer." "I'm a doctor." "I pick up road kill on Redwood Road."  HaHa!!

Anway, today we drove by the same place and all that was left of that poor stinky skunk was the tail.  Literally, the tail, not even the smell remained.  We thought about going back to take a picture it was so funny.  But instead my daughter said in a very hillbilly voice, "I got my rabbit foot and my skunk tail, I'm all set."

We laughed all the way home at that poor stinky skunk tail.  We're still laughing now.

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