27 March 2007

From this...

To this...

In only 5 years!

26 March 2007

The effect was slight

Certainly the spin on this story in today's NY Times will not be using this quote from the second paragraph:
The effect was slight, and well within the normal range for healthy children, the researchers found. And as expected, parents’ guidance and their genes had by far the strongest influence on how children behaved.

I find it infuriating that the rest of the article goes on in a very biased manner to say that children who go to daycare are simply poorly behaved. The level of that misbehavior is barely described and the actual affect on the classroom is not even mentioned.

Daycare is a fact of life. And as far as I am concerned, some amount of preschool should be mandatory. My reaction to this is that teachers need to develop modern strategies to deal with the behaviors instead of relying on 60 year-old concepts where kids were largely coming from no previous experience with a school setting.

22 March 2007

What were you doing five years ago?

Zoë's birthday was yesterday. She's five years old now. Five! Damn time flies.

I got a well-timed email from a friend yesterday who said, "Trivia question: What were you doing five years ago today?"

Ouch! Did that ever bring back some painful memories. Zoë was born at 3:42 PM and the time stamp on the email was 12: 37 PM. That meant that five years ago at that moment I was just about to start 3 hours of pushing. Yes, 3 hours. That was definitely not the fun part -- especially when they turned off the magic epidural.

On a lighter note...I am getting great amusement out of Zoë's list of birthday presents. They are:

  1. Fisher Price Mega T-Rex
    (this was a specific request)
  2. Make-up (for kids)
  3. An electric pencil sharpener
  4. A flashlight that you have to shake (no batteries)
  5. Fisher Price Kid-Tough Digital Camera
  6. A book on reptiles
  7. A compass
  8. A purse with butterflies embroidered on it
  9. Rubber snakes (which promptly found a home in the above purse)
She has quite diverse tastes, huh?

15 March 2007

Does it suck?

Wondering if that new cell phone you're thinking about is cool or not? Thinking about going to a movie, but aren't sure if its any good? Well, then this new site is for you! It is sucks/rocks.

When you enter a search term, sucks/rocks searches the web for several positive and negative phrases using that term. The score is the fraction of positive results to the sum of positive and negative results, normalized to 10. You can stack up results next to each other so if you wanted to decide what movie to see you can enter the titles of 4 or 5 movies and see which one got more positive ratings.

I'm not sure how scientific it really is, but it is cool none-the-less.

12 March 2007

Congratulations R.E.M.

Anyone who knew me in th 80's and early 90's knows what a huge R.E.M. fan I am. I own every CD they have ever issued. That is why I am happy to say congratulations to them tonight as they are being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

Also included in this year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame class are:
Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five -- tell me you don't remember dancing to "White Lines"???)
The Ronettes
Patti Smith
Van Halen (with Sammy or David, I wonder?).

And if you're ever in Cleveland be sure to check out the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum. It is a great time.

09 March 2007

Disney Dreams

The other day at school Zoë had to create a little book about her dream. Her teacher showed me her book and told me what an amazing job she had done. I was proud before I even saw the book, but after I saw it I felt a little like Mom of the year.

Zoë's dream book was about Disney World. The first page of the book had Mickey Mouse standing on top of a rainbow, the next page was a drawing of an airplane and the last page was some kind of ride.

Do you think Zoë is excited about our upcoming trip to Disney, or what?

Questions: Anyone out there have suggestions or hints about what we should be sure to do for Zoe's first visit?

08 March 2007

American Idol Review 2

It's definitely going to be a woman idol this year. They are soooo much stronger than the men! A league above! I also feel that I could be the 4th judge on the show. I take notes while watching ( I know a little obsessive) & as the contestants sing, I write down my thoughts on the song choice, the actual performance, etc. On most, I could read the judges words almost verbatim. Funny. I'll keep waiting for the fourth judge position to become available.

OK, down to business. The men were in a word, boring, last night. The 3 that I liked were the following: Blake, Sundance, & Chris S. Not all perfect performances, but somewhat memorable. Blake chose the correct song for his style, despite some of the off-key parts. I still thought he was true to himself & showed a younger style. (I was also proud of myself when Randy said he didn't know who or what that song was & I shouted to the TV, "It's 3-11!" It made me feel just a little more with it.)
I think Sundance chose a good song, but it wasn't perfect. I hope he'll be in the top 12. I'm sure with a little direction he will really shine. Chris Sligh was the best of the night. He just did a great job with his song. I didn't know what song it was, but I really liked it.
The rest were OK. Sanjaya...I'm going to die of boredom watching him. Don't even get me started on the fact he should not be here this week.... Jared is good, but it's so hard to pick a Stevie Wonder song. Leave Stevie out of it!
I think that Sanjaya and Brandon will go home tomorrow.

A lot more to say about the women. My favorites, and not necessarily in this order, are Stephanie, LaKisha, Gina, and Melinda. Stephanie picked a great song. That is absolutely one of my favorites, whether Chaka Khan or Mary J. sings it. It's just such a great song. Stephanie did a great job putting some of her own touches into it, so I didn't totally agree with the judges on that. I keep forgetting that she is so young with her great stage presence. What do I need to say about LaKisha? She brought tears to my eyes. She has permission to take on Whitney!! Gina was great tonight, I thought. She's very powerful and I really just like her personality. I think she chose a great song tonight. Melinda was truly the best of the night. She has an amazing voice & when she gets on stage, it's like she's playing a role. I just think she's wonderful. I predict her to be one of the top 2, if not the winner.
The rest of the women were pretty good. I just felt that most of them were nothing special, as Randy said, they didn't have the "Yo!" Admittedly, Antonella did better tonight; she definitely picked a better song than previous weeks. Again, how is she still here? She cannot compare to the other strong perfomers. Haley's song was cheesy & not a stand out at all. She strikes me as a Disney World singer or something. Can't you just see her performing as Cinderella or Snow White? She has a good voice, but she is not the American Idol. That will be due to poor song choice. I think that Antonella & Haley will go home tomorrow.

At this point, I'm looking ahead to the top 12 so I can see who will be singing on tour this summer. Hopefully, all my favorites. Until tomorrow night, Samantha's Mom....out. :)

01 March 2007

The Care Crisis

Having just lived through the Plague of 2007, this article "The Care Crisis", really hit home. I highly recommend reading the entire piece.

The thing I find so frustrating is that this is not just a women's issue -- it is an issue for everyone and yet it seems to fall on the shoulders of women alone. Once in awhile when my defences are way down I allow myself to wonder...What would I do if Zoe were really sick? How would I be able to take care of her without it affecting my job or income? There are no easy answers and that is the part that scares me.