Monday, November 26, 2007

Lizzy's Birthday

This is my beautiful granddaughter, Elizabeth. I call her Lizzy. She is my sunshine and makes me so happy. She's such a good little girl. She just turned three in November. I love watching her smile, laugh, discover new things, and play. She's so much fun. I would love to spend time, much more time with her.
I love you, Lizzy. You are so precious to me. You are so smart and such a good little girl. You are my sunshine.
[I have had so many problems with my computer. I've been trying to download this picture every time I get on the computer but I have dial-up, which is frustrating. In fact, I have had problems sending photos on all three of my e-mail addresses for the last two months.]

Jack's Birthday

This is Jack's birthday party. Gretchen is my daughter and is in the light blue top and Jack is my grandson. I made the blue superhero shirt he is wearing. It was a great birthday party with all the bells and whistles. All kids should be lucky enough to have parents who give their kids such a nice birthday party.
Jack is such a cutie and I love him so much. He always makes me happy. He's my sunshine. I love seeing him and spending time with him. He's fun and thoughtful, wants to help, and full of energy. He's a good little boy and is so precious to me.
You are a smart little boy, Jack. Read stacks of books and learn everything you can to get ready to be Jack who can handle anything in the world and solve any problems. You are my sunshine.

Dogs on a Leash

There are many municipal laws on the books about dogs on a leash but this law is rarely enforced. Dog owners often do not feel the need to have their dog on a leash if their dog will obey a verbal command, but is this responsible? A dog is an animal. With so many variables to distract can one be certain that their well-trained dog will not cause harm even under supposedly innocent circumstances? I am also aware how easily it would be to use a well-trained dog to accomplish a goal to cause harm and make it appear innocent.

My son, Benjamin was running in a cross country event for Seattle Running Company to get ready for the National Cross Country event in Columbus, Ohio in December. At 1K, a dog appeared out of no where and collided with my son who fell to the ground, broke his wrist, hurt his knee, and had to stop. Blood ran down both of his arms. This dog should have been on a leash. My son is an elite distance runner. This year he finished the Eugene Marathon in 2 hours and 30 minutes. He runs cross country to bring speed to his distance running. The owner of the dog who allowed his dog to be off a leash should pay for the medical bills but how do you pay for lost dreams when you are at the top of your game? This dog took away more than the running dream because it effects my son at work on the computer.

A seemingly innocent act of allowing your dog to run off leash during a 10K running event is not so innocent, in my opinion. Often I wish I had gone to law school. Attorneys are the defenders of the law and innocent victims. Yes, some attorneys bend to greed and the highest bidder but I still believe in the law and that there are attorneys out there who fight for what's right.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


On the trip of a lifetime this summer, my son, Daniel drove across country from California to Ohio on I80 in a Penske moving truck. Everytime we saw a Penske truck coming our way on the freeway, we raised our arms in unison and said, PENSKE!

I'm impressed with Penske. We had zero problems and Penske made the move easier. The spacious air-conditioned cab made it easier going through hot temperatures with plenty of large cup holders for big soda pop drinks with ice. The cab had plenty of space to put some luggage or bags of books or items to keep me occupied during the trip.

Here's a photo that I took at a rest stop at the Utah salt flats. I met the nicest family at this rest stop.

Thank you, Daniel. I'll never forget the fun, the laughs in the Penske truck along I-80.

Jewelry Television

Jewelry Television on Channel 313 on Direct TV has opened my eyes to the potential of making jewelry by buying loose gems and creating your own jewelry. All gems are genuine and I'm impressed by the bargains. You can buy 25 carats of 8mm sky blue topaz for only $19.98. This is a beautiful stone and you can get it for less than a dollar a carat. This is amazing. Check it out. Such a deal!


On the front page of the Corvallis Gazette Times on November 24 is the headline, "Firefighters take on role in terrorism surveillance." It goes on to say that "unlike police, firefighters and emergency medical personnel don't need warrants to access hundreds of thousands of homes and buildings each year...."

The potential abuse brings to mind the book, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury and it makes me wonder why firefighters want their hero status scarred.

We don't seem to be the same United States of America anymore where the Constitution and Bill of Rights matter.

Merit Pay for Teachers

On the November 20th front page of the Corvallis Gazette Times [] the headline reads "Teacher merit pay may be on '08 ballot."

Bill Sizemore is pushing this agenda who seems to be hated by anyone who wants to make sure the money keeps coming for their own self interest.

Many say that merit pay is an enemy of public education but is it? I really wonder about teachers who are threatened by merit pay. Shouldn't the goal be to reward teachers who inspire kids and clean house of those teachers who don't? I haven't seen headlines spash across newspapers saying the education in the United States is the best in the world. Shouldn't we work hard in this country to keep reaching for the best ways to inspire students and reward it when we find teachers who do?

Saturday, November 10, 2007

High Blood Pressure

A couple of weeks ago, my blood pressure was checked. It was 155 over 120. I have a headache almost all the time. I can feel the pulsing in my head. When you don't have a doctor and zero health insurance or savings, you ignore symptoms. It's too bad that people aren't valued in this country. Everyone should have access to a basic level of health care and emphasis should be placed on prevention.

Kennedy Space Center

My son, Joe is on the right. Alexander the Great, my grandson is on the left with his best friend, Chance, who is in the middle. They are visiting Kennedy Space Center.
Joe lives in Florida and is a great father. He is an Assistant Manager for Wal-Mart in one of the big stores in Orlando. Joe loves his job and loves Florida.


My husband, Leslie has been sick all summer and ended up in the hospital on October 31 at Good Samaritan in Corvallis. He was in three different rooms. Heart disease and cancer was ruled out. The big question is what would cause a loss of blood platelets. The number was only 8,000 when he was admitted, instead of the normal range that starts at 300,000. After tests and experts for days, he was released on November 6 without answers. His doctor, Dr. Kenyan is supposed to be one of the best in Oregon who is tenacious and will not stop until answers are found so we are happy. It still might be the Valley Fever. So far we know his body is allergic to itself. He has Evans Syndrome, Eosinophilia, Lymphadenopathy, and a history of Coccidiomycosis.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints talks about family values. Presidential candidate, Romney, a Mormon, talks about family values. He is running on a platform based on family values. Sounds good....

I recently watched the PBS Frontline special, The Mormons, the last in a series inside the Mormon faith. At the beginning, Dallin H. Oaks, one of the twelve apostles said, "It's wrong to criticize leaders of the church, even if the criticism is true." He later said, "Intellectualism is a danger to the church...." Boyd K. Packer, another one of the twelve apostles said, "Gays, Feminists, and Intellectuals are enemies of the church."

This sounds a little like Hitler's Nazi empire to me. Hitler didn't like gays, feminists, and intellectuals either and we all know how that turned out. Don't think for yourself. Don't question authority figures. Don't have an opinion.

It isn't possible to hold a temple recommend, if you criticize leaders of the church or question them.

[I learned all this first hand when my husband and I were serving as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We were helping people find employment on a service mission in Salem covering an eight stake area driving back and forth from Alsea on our own dime. Les finished the two year mission. I quit after six months. We saw behaviors of leaders that warranted big questions. We became members in 1995. After letters to Salt Lake City in 2001, we were shunned.]

Is this really the kind of family values that we want to teach our children? In my opinion, if doctrine can't stand light and debate, it isn't valid. If leaders aren't doing what they ought, the church should clean house. To teach vulnerable and innocent children to not question authority figures and to follow blindly is to create robot children who will fall prey to predators.