Thursday, October 29, 2009

District Diversity Meeting

For those wondering -
I did attend the diversity meeting at the school district.

I went because I wanted to know what the school's taught about same-gender families and let them know I didn't want assignments or books about same-gender relationships being given to my children. I believe marriage is absolutely sacred and should be between a man and a woman. (Interesting how my view is supported by thousands of years of humanity - yet now I feel afraid to stand up for my beliefs.)

In the school's definition of diversity listed among ethnicity, religion, and financial status were gender-identity and sexual orientation. But this was at the forum - I don't know what is taught to students regarding it.

I know that bullying of any type for any reason is wrong. I was shocked to hear the Jr High and High School students talk about the teasing, fights, and violence that occurs. It became obvious that more needs to be done to punish/counsel the kids involved in it.

The forum wasn't really an open mic type situation - which I was somewhat grateful for, I'm not big on confrontations. But we divided up into groups to discuss the issues the students talked about. I let the facilitator know the reason for my attendance and that I didn't think homosexuality should be taught in school. I told her that tolerance and acceptance are two very different things. I also asked that parents should be made aware when controversial issues like this are going to be talked about in class BEFORE hand so they can approve of it or make other arrangements. She took notes on what the group said and it was all going back to the district. I also filled out a comment card, repeating my thoughts, with my e-mail address and notation that I was interested in being involved.

Part of America's greatness is the FREEDOM OF RELIGION. Once same-gender marriages are approved and schools start teaching it as natural and normal, that freedom begins to erode.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Food and Fashion

The truth is - I always forget about goodwill. And, I don't think the prices are low enough for used stuff. That being said, there's a time of year I love to go there - Halloween. I love making my own costumes.

Reese had decided she wanted to be Sharpay from High School Musical. The ready to wear costume you can buy is between $20-$30 and not that great. So off to goodwill we went. I found the perfect dress for her! It was an adult's really small size, so It works without hardly any alterations.

I didn't get a full body pic, because she's still feeling a bit sick. But I cut the dress on a diagonal on the bottom and added some closures in the back. We also found this silver sparkly sling bag she'll use to put her candy in. "And after that just for anything I want!" she explained. With a pink fur jacket and pink heels from storage; we'll add some fancy leggings, and make a headband that says "Sharpay" in sparkles and she'll be good to go!

Now for the food-->

I finally tried a recipe for a stuffed squash I've been wanting to try. It was SUPER YUMMY. It's an acorn squash, cut and cooked for 30 minutes. Then stuffed with shredded zucchini, carrot and onion that had all been sauteed. Added to that were some bread crumbs, Tuscan spice mix and an egg. Once the filling is in the squash cook for another 15 minutes. It smelled like Thanksgiving and tasted delicious. Next time - I'll probably salt and pepper the inside of the squash before scooping in my filling.

I love banana bread. And I used to love zucchini bread, but have never made it. So this time as I made my banana bread I added a shredded zucchini to it. I used applesauce and a tiny bit of olive oil instead of butter and honey instead of sugar. The recipe called for Baking Soda but I also added a bit of Baking Powder because I've read that when using honey instead of sugar the food needs the extra umph of leavening agent. To get a good sweetness I sprinkled the pan very lightly with some brown sugar before pouring in the batter as well as sprinkled a little on top of the batter.
So this had 1 zucchini, 3 bananas, and 3/4 applesauce - a good amount of necessary fruits and veggies; as well as it was made with whole wheat flour. And you know what? The kids gobbled it up.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

So Excited :)

On October 15th at 12:01 am, I committed to doing another Triathlon. I was really nervous and those voices of self doubt were creeping in (BOOO!).

Then I remembered this:

The extraordinary feeling of doing something I never thought I would be able to.

I had planned all along to do the Wunderwoman Triathlon again in 2010. But for some reason this Valley Girl Triathlon seemed too intimidating. The distances are only a bit longer on the swim and bike, and quite doable, but the whole idea of trying something new was daunting.

So I reached back into my heart and grasped hold of the TRI-HIGH I got from my last triathlon - read about it here - And signed up.

Thanks Tiff for pushing me, and although I hesitated, I am so so excited for it. And the tri sold out on October 15th at 1:10 am!

Now it's time to kick up my training.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Catch and Release is for Sissies

Our kitchen seemed overrun with fruit flies this year. Even after storing bananas in the pantry and everything else in the fridge - we still had the little pests flying around.

I looked online and there were several different methods - including a catch and release. WTH? For fruit flies?? After reading my post, you'll see there's nothing humane about my method. But I guess if you prefer, you can skip the last couple steps and let the little buggers go live outside.

1. I got a glass, I used glass specifically so I could see how many I was trapping.
2. Put some bait in the bottom. I used pineapple. But I also noticed a cup of OJ my daughter left out had attracted a lot of fruit flies (FF's).
3. Make a funnel out of paper. The top needs to be wide enough to sit in the glass while leaving space at the bottom for your bait. The hole at the bottom is about 1/8" wide. The funnel shouldn't touch the bait, it may help the FF's crawl out.
4. Tape the funnel to keep it's shape and tape it all around the top of the glass so they can't crawl out of the glass.
5. Enjoy watching the FF's get trapped, for some reason once they get into the glass, they can't fly up out of the funnel hole.
6. To kill the FF's, you can put the cup in the freezer for about 20 minutes.
7. So that I didn't have to make new traps, and I was afraid of FF's getting out of the trap, and I know FF's don't like cold bait, once I took it out of the freezer, I microwaved my whole trap and set it out to catch more.

Other suggestions are:
1. Put apple cider vinegar in a bowl and mix with dish soap. The apple cider attracts them, and the dish soap helps disperse the surface tension and they drown. Or something like that.
2. At night, put a dish of bait in your dishwasher and leave the door slightly ajar. In the morning, gently, so as not disturb the FF's, close the dishwasher door. Turn on the dishwasher and wash those flies away. (you shouldn't open the door to see how many you caught - this could alert the FF's and they'll fly away. - see why I love the glass method.)

Happy Hunting!