Our Lady of Fatima... Pray for us.
Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament... Hear us.
Our Lady of the Rosary... Strengthen us.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Funny Guy Friday....What could possibly go wrong...

    Grace's birthday is this week and Cheryl and I bought her four tickets to a concert---Train and Maroon 5. Cool gift because I am a cool Dad---that is how I roll. Actually, I had no idea who Train or Maroon 5 were and so I got my nephew's fiance to take them.
    Anyway, we got the tickets four months ago and it is the perfect gift. Problem----the concert was on a Wednesday night, and Cheryl had planned to leave for Newport, Rhode Island to visit her parents on Monday of that same week. No problem, I would stay with Grace and she and I would fly up on Thursday. Problem resolved. Perhaps I am the best dad ever. Anything for my baby girl. This was going to be great. What could go wrong?
    Grace invited her friends and all was good in the world. Problem----one of her friends could not go. Grace's solution was to invite her cousin and great friend Katherine to the fun. Problem resolved---sort of.
    Problem----Katherine lives in Houston. I contacted my sister and botta-bing, botta-bang, botta-boom! we had her booked on a flight to Baltimore on Monday and then on our flight to Newport on Thursday. I am a true double threat, a great dad and a great uncle. Despite the temporary setback, I was keeping it all together and nothing more could possibly go wrong.
     Cheryl left for Newport early Monday afternoon and my plans for my wonderful daughter and niece were progressing nicely. Problem----Monday afternoon, I received a call from my sister advising that Katherine could not fly on that particular airline because she was under 18. This was bad news but a mere bump in the road. We were going to get Katherine here if it killed me. My sister generously resolved that problem by cashing in a free ticket for a later flight on a different airline. Problem resolved. Now we were cooking with oil and all was good in the world.
    Katherine's flight did not get into Baltimore until almost midnight on Monday so I let the girls sleep in on Tuesday. I felt bad that they would be home alone all day, but what could go wrong, they are both responsible girls. I still felt good about the week and was proud of how well we had all handled all of the different issues that arose in the past two days. Problem----I got back to my office at about 1:30---just in time for the EARTHQUAKE! That's right, I said EARTHQUAKE!
   On my way out of our building, I saw that Grace was trying to call me but I could not get a cell phone connection. What good are cell phones if they do not work during an emergency?  Seriously, there I was with all of my 4Gs but I could not get a call to go through. I was reduced to trying a land line. How Stone Age can you get? Still no luck. Grace was home with my niece and Cheryl was in New Jersey. I left work and drove home worried about all the people I could not get in touch with.
   I got home and I calmed whatever fears that Grace and Katherine may have had. It was really no big deal, I just stopped the world from shaking. I did a quick inspection of the house and all was good. Problem solved. Great dad and now a super hero.
   Wednesday was concert day and the plan was for me to leave work early to take the girls to dinner before the concert. Problem----my secretary scheduled an appointment at 4:00 p.m. with one of my most difficult clients. Being a great dad but kind of a cowardly boss, I made my secretary call and cancel the appointment. He was not happy, but I was not missing this dinner. Problem solved but we did get to the restaurant late.
    The girls ate and left for the concert while I stayed to pay the bill. Not a problem but kind of depressing seeing your baby girl happily leaving you to go with her friends to see a concert while you sit alone in a big booth waiting to pay the bill. She is growing up and I am the one getting old. I guess that is a problem but there is no solution. I digress.
   Well, I am happy to report that the concert was a big hit. The girls had a great time and arrived home ready to catch a plane to Newport the next morning. This was to be the first time that we have gotten away this summer for a vacation and we had the added bonus of having our niece with us. I was sure that we were going to have a great time. No more problems just a relaxing vacation.
    What's that? No my niece is named Katherine, not Irene. I don't even know anybody named Irene, and I certainly do not have plans on taking this Irene girl to the great Ocean State of Rhode Island with us. I mean if we cross paths with this Irene, I will say hello but she is not coming with us---getting to Rhode Island is her problem, not mine. I am done with problems. Like I said, we plan on having a nice relaxing vacation. 
    What could possibly go wrong?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Funny Guy Friday... I was innocently playing "Bubble Bust"...

    Please be advised that this week's FGF is rated PG13 due to the adult content. It could be the most controversial post ever----as always, it is all Cheryl's fault.
    On Wednesday, I came home to find that the boys were over at their Aunt's house and Cheryl and Grace were sitting together on the loveseat. Cheryl was on the laptop and Grace was playing on her iPod. I snuggled up and broke out my own iPhone and joined in the fun. Grace and I were playing a game called Bubble Bust.
    When Cheryl looked up from her precious Mac, she was disgusted to see Grace and me deep in Bubble Bust strategy. She said it was ridiculous that we would sit there, wasting our time busting balls. Of course, Grace and I giggled at this.
    Cheryl was not amused: "Why would you laugh at that?"--- as if it were not obvious.
    More importantly, she wondered why Grace was grinning. She did not believe that Grace would understand anything about the phrase ball busting. Grace assured her that she did know what it meant, but she did not want to say it out loud. Everyone was satisified with this exchange except for Cheryl.
    Cheryl pressed on and told Grace that it was not as bad as she may think (aka... not the kind of thing a 15-year-old would snicker at), but that it just meant that someone was being a bit hard on another person or on a group.
    That may be true in "Cheryl World," but I thought that I had better set the record straight and make sure Grace knew that it did not just mean that someone was not being nice. Basically, I clarified that it is a very inappropriate way to point out that someone is being a bit hard on another person or group and that the person or group is typically of the male gender.
    Surprisingly, Cheryl was not satisfied with this clarification and said to Grace that using those words together is not always inappropriate and did not have to be sexual in nature. What? Are you kidding me? Just because you, Sister Cheryl, innocently uttered the phrase in a sentence, does not somehow change the fact that it is not an appropriate expression.  She was still not convinced, so I decided to prove my point.
    I told Grace that Mom was right and at times, you can use that particular phrase to make a salient point. For example, if at church on Sunday, Father gives a fiery homily, you could go up to him after Mass and tell him, Hey Father, that was a great homily, but don't you think you were kind of bustin' balls there at the end!     
    Now, of course, I had gone too far. Cheryl slapped my arm and caused me to lose my game of Bubble Bust.
    This upset me so I turned to Cheryl, told her to relax, and made it very clear to her that I was not being serious, but which is it? Is it inappropriate or not?
    I also advised Cheryl that at this point, I was just using an innappropriate way to be hard on another person or group and in this particular case, that person was of the female gender.  
    I think that it is safe to say that that phrase will never be uttered again by any member of our family. Innocently or otherwise.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Funny Guy Friday... Camp Maria...

       This past weekend, we went to one of our family's favorite places in the world for a family retreat. We arrived at Camp Maria in St. Mary's County, Maryland, last Thursday for the sixth straight year. We had become involved with this retreat when we were approached by a retreat member, and were asked to join.
       "You guys should join us, we go to Saint Mary's County in August, the weather is really hot and you stay in cabins with no air conditioning---can you say sauna?, the food is terrible and the nuns are meaner than rattlesnakes, other than that, it is great! "
      Wow, how could we turn this offer down?
      That first year, about a month before the retreat, I walked in our kitchen and found Cheryl writing a check for an amount that was much higher than what I thought we should pay to go to Saint Mary's County and sweat, starve and get yelled out by mean nuns. She advised me that this was just a partial payment. My retreat experience was off to a great start.
      Since that first retreat, there have been many enlightening moments, but none more enlightening than what I learned in our second year. That year, we persuaded my best friend P.J. and his family to join us at the Camp Maria spa and resort.
     We used a different recruiting approach, and told them that the weather was unpredictable (occasionally a breeze blows off the water to cool the 100 degree days), the accommodations were rustic (they are rustic), the food was prepared by women who have been doing it for years (opening a can of beets qualifies as preparing food, doesn't it?) and the hospitality was unbelievable (this was no exaggeration---the nuns were unbelievable).
      We also told them what items they should bring. My friend took packing to another level: my man packed everything but the kitchen sink---no wait a second, Cheryl just read over my shoulder and reminded me that they did, in fact, pack their kitchen sink. Watching them unpack was impressive, but there was complete disbelief when my daughter ran into our cabin and advised that they had actually packed an air conditioner (true story). Anyway, the enlightening moment came on day two of the retreat.
      We had just finished our second group session with the priest and P.J. came over to ask where I had been the night before. The question caught me by surprise because there is no place to go within a five mile radius of Camp Maria. Of course, I advised that I was in bed. I wondered where he had gone----this was his first year, what could he know that I didn't know? He told me that he and a couple of other fellows had stayed up and had a few beers. Wait a second, this is a family religous retreat, is that allowed? Apparently, it is----you just have to wait until the kids and the nuns go to sleep.
     The next night I joined his crew. I must say, I felt like I was a kid sneaking out of my parents' house. Every night since, we have met up when the kids go to bed, or at least when they should be in bed, and we "continue the daily discussions." A terrific opportunity for additional fellowship, laughter and sharing.
     This past year, Cheryl and I were the lead couple. This means that we had to come up with a theme for the weekend, meet with the priest to discuss the theme, recruit group leaders for the kids' groups, assign each kid to a group, recruit a second priest for confessions, hire the lifeguards, assign cabins for each family and each group leader, assign each family a specific task for the weekend, schedule each talk, schedule each event and make sure that everything ran on time once we got there.
    This was a lot of work and I decided to delegate some of these duties to my lovely wife. This meant that Cheryl had to develop a theme for the weekend, meet with the priest to discuss the theme, recruit group leaders for the kids' groups, assign each kid to a group, recruit a second priest to help with confessions, hire the lifeguards, assign cabins for each family and group leader, assign each family a specific task for the weekend, schedule each event and make sure that everything ran on time once we got there.
     I must say, I think that we pulled it all off without a hitch! Well, maybe one hitch.
     On Saturday, we processed with the Blessed Sacrament across the field to the oratory, where the priest was to place the Blessed Sacrament for adoration. The group processed in a very holy, very appropriate fashion.
     When we reached our destination, the room was locked. So, there we were with more than one hundred people standing outside of the oratory, and two people running back across the field to find a key.
     P.J. decided that he was tired of waiting and decided to break in. He proceeded to prop open a window and push in a screen---all while Father was standing next to him, holding the Blessed Sacrament. I wondered if when the police arrived on the scene, they would have made two arrests, P.J. and Jesus. Fortunately, the key was found and order was restored. Of course, this was all Cheryl's fault.
     Over the years, there have been some changes at Camp Maria. The nuns are gone and have been replaced by kinder, gentler managers, and the food has improved. The accommodations are still rustic, but we are used to it and I must say, the weather has, for the most part been pleasant the past few years.
     What hasn't changed is that the retreat is truly one of the best events of the year. The kids look forward to the weekend with the same enthusiasm that they look forward to Christmas. Every year, we are blessed to join a group of wonderful people that share our same concerns and our values. We have an opportunity to have our Catholic faith affirmed and rejuvenated. This was especially important this particular year, as eight families had lost a parent this past year. Two lost parents within a few weeks of the retreat.
      You might think that the events of the past year would have given the retreat a different tone than in years past. But no, it wasn't different at all. It was much of the same and that fact alone, further strengthened my faith. Although we all had difficulties over the past year, the fact remains that we are all truly blessed by God. Good families, great friends, and an opportunity to spend a weekend with them in August at Camp Maria----it doesn't get any better than that.
Family Blessings

P.J.  is a big kid

On your mark...
Get set...


Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh my!
Noah and Gracie switching looks
Outdoor Mass
Saturday night crabfeast

Matthew with his buddies
We say goodbye...  Until next year

Thursday, August 11, 2011

President Reagan's farewell address...

     The man was brilliant in his clarity, his simplicity, and his strength of convictions. He loved America and he believed in her people.
     We would do well to listen to him.
     President Reagan, we miss you so.

Twin reduction... Choosing self above all else...

     This was a disturbing article, in the New York Times Magazine, about the growing trend to abort twins down to a singleton because, as was the case with one of the women, she wanted a baby, but she didn't want to be saddled with "two screaming infants."  "I want only one!"
     Of course, they don't call them abortions, they call them "reductions." Either way, the result is the same. 
     As horrifying as abortion always is to me, almost as horrific in these cases was the women's absolute disdain for the lives they had helped create within themselves. "It was horrible... I felt like the pregancy was a monster, and I just wanted it out..." 
     Discouraging too was the selfishness, callousness, and cynicism contained in their stories, as they attempted to justify their choice. Some women, the article stated, even after spending years and thousands of dollars to get pregnant, some through donor eggs, said they "lacked the resources to deal with the chaos, stereophonic screaming and exhaustion of raising twins." I can't be expected to handle more than one of these little noisy creatures! 
     Striking, too, was the cowardly refusal of these people to look at their ultrasounds to see what they were actually choosing. And their passing the decision on to the abortionists as to which babies to reduce. "Consider the choice of which fetus to eliminate: If both appear healthy (which is typical of twins), doctors aim for whichever one is easer to reach. If both are equally accessible, the decision of who lives and who dies is random." In many cases, the woman tells the doctor to pick. As if they hadn't really chosen this after all, so that makes it better. 
     More evidence of their inability to deal with reality and responsibility, which led them to their decisions in the first place. 
     That, and the absence of the belief in God's mercy and grace.
     Just when I think I can't be horrified further by abortion, I am.

Contract for the American nightmare...

     George Soros has so many good ideas, doesn't he?
     There is nothing quite so heartwarming as the sight of children being used by communists. Wow. These kids are so wise. We should really listen to them.
     They forgot to include a one-child policy, federal ownership of all private property, workers being herded into "sustainable communities" to live above the government factories they are forced to work in, and surrender of our national sovereignty to a one-world dictatorship.
     The so-called Contract for the American Dream is nothing more than a contract for "continued redistribution of wealth, from taxpayers to Democratic special interests."
     Ain't Marxism grand? We are mostly there already. Choose your civic leaders wisely. Time is running out to stop this.
     Read more about Read more about the Soros web of activity.
     We are in a battle of good versus evil. Once again, I pray for God's protection of our Republic.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Runaway Slave...

The orderly decline of the dollar...

     Do you remember this little nugget from George Soros? He stated that "an orderly decline [of the dollar] is desirable." Then, in late July, he shuttered his hedge fund to outside investors, citing that there were too many federal regulations in last year's financial reform law for his liking. Seems the SEC would require him to reveal what he was doing. Hmmm. Regulations for thee, but not for me.
     In the reform law, in part written by the lobby group, Managed Funds Association, of which Soros is a member, hedge fund regulations were weakened, and what better way for him to consolidate his power, than to exempt himself as a private, family-only hedge fund manager. It's perfectly legal, you know. After all, that provision is in the law, signed by President Obama.
     Speaking of "orderly," did you know that Title II of the same financial reform package includes something called, the Orderly Liquidation Authority. Wow, it almost sounds like the reformers and Soros are using the same language. Title II gives the federal government the power to liquidate financial institutions/insurance agencies it regards as "threatening to the financial stability of the U.S."  Shut. Them. Down.
     Ahh. The power of the State. Do the lawmakers ever even read these bills?
     So, here comes the S&P downgrade. Timing is everything. Have we not been on this spending binge for decades, unable to cut the size and scope of government? Have we not printed trillions of dollars in order to satisfy our need for more debt? Were we really deserving of a AAA rating all of this time?
     So, the question is, Why now? Could it be that all systems are finally in place for the completion of the fundamental destruction transformation? Who could be pulling the strings?
    According to a story in, about the same time as Soros privatized his hedge fund, to escape the eyes of federal regulators, a "mystery investor" made a nearly $1 billion bet that the U.S. would lose its AAA credit rating, and about a week later... voila... the downgrade. The mystery investor stands to make a return of 1000%. That's $10 billion. This leads to serious questions about who the mystery trader is, and did they have insider information well beforehand. Some speculate it is Soros.
     I have little doubt that this is all being orchestrated. So orderly.
     Since 2007, S&P, and other credit ratings agencies, have been criticized for giving their highest ratings to risky entities (Fannie and Freddie) and risky pools of loans (CDOs, ADPs, etc), since investors trusted their highest AAA ratings. Investors lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the housing crash and subsequent economic meltdown.
     Some argue that the ratings agencies didn't just aid in the housing crash, they, along with Congress (Community Reinvestment Act), and Fannie and Freddie (who S&P also recently downgraded) caused it, as congressional and financial "experts" manipulated reality at the expense of trusting Americans. The general public was uninformed and unsuspecting. But these "experts" knew the risks. They should have told the people.
     Critics also point out that the ratings agencies are paid by the companies they rate, calling into question their objectivity, as the agencies are seemingly beholden to these companies.
     And now these same ratings agencies are under federal control, pressure, oversight, as part of last year's so-called financial reform law.
     Who else are the ratings agencies beholden to? Is S&P involved with those in power to bring about an orderly decline of the dollar?

Excerpt from Title IX of the financial reform law of July, 2010...

Subtitle C - Improvements to the Regulation of Credit Rating Agencies
Recognizing credit ratings issued by credit rating agencies, including nationally recognized statistical rating organizations (NRSROs), are matters of national public interest, that credit rating agencies are critical “gatekeepers” in the debt market central to capital formation, investor confidence, and the efficient performance of the United States economy, Congress expanded regulation of credit rating agencies.[134]
Subtitle C cites findings of conflicts of interest and inaccuracies during the recent financial crisis contributed significantly to the mismanagement of risks by financial institutions and investors which in turn adversely impacted the health of the United States economy as factors necessitating increased accountability and transparency by credit rating agencies.[135]
Subtitle C mandates the creation by the SEC of an Office of Credit Ratings (OCR) to provide oversight over NRSROs and enhanced regulation of such entities.[136]
Securities and Exchange Commission
Subtitle C grants authority to the Commission to temporarily suspend or permanently revoke the registration of an NRSRO with respect to a particular class or subclass of securities if after notice and hearing the NRSRO lacks the resources to produce credit ratings with integrity.[137] Additional key provisions of the Act are:
  • The Commission shall prescribe rules with respect to credit rating procedures and methodologies.
  • OCR is required to conduct an examination of each NRSRO at least annually and shall produce a public inspection report.
  • To facilitate transparency of credit ratings performance, the Commission shall require NRSROs to publicly disclose information on initial and revised credit ratings issued, including the credit rating methodology utilized and data relied on, to enable users to evaluate NRSROs.
Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations
Enhanced regulations of credit rating agencies include:
  • NRSROs are required to establish, maintain, enforce and document an effective internal control structure governing the implementation of and adherence to policies, procedures, and methodologies for determining credit ratings.[137]
  • Submit to the OCR an annual internal control report.
  • Adhere to rules established by the Commission to prevent sales and marketing considerations from influencing the ratings issued by a NRSRO.
  • Policies and procedures with regard to (1) certain employment transitions to avoid conflicts of interest, (2) the processing of complaints regarding NRSRO noncompliance, and (3) notification to users of identified significant errors are required.
  • Compensation of the compliance officer may not be linked to the financial performance of the NRSRO.
  • The duty to report to appropriate authorities credible allegations of unlawful conduct by issuers of securities.[137]
  • The consideration of credible information about an issuer from sources other than the issuer or underwriter which is potentially significant to a rating decision.
  • The Act establishes corporate governance, organizational, and management of conflict of interest guidelines. A minimum of 2 independent directors is required.[137]
In addition, Subtitle C requires the SEC to conduct a study on strengthening NRSRO independence and recommends the SEC utilize its rulemaking authority to establish guidelines to prevent improper conflicts of interest arising from the performance of services unrelated to the issuance of credit ratings such as consulting, advisory, and other services.[138] The Act requires the Comptroller General of the United States to conduct a study on alternative business models for compensating NRSROs[139]

Monday, August 8, 2011

Don't blame the Tea Party...

     Over the weekend, Obama strategist David Axelrod blamed conservatives for America's credit downgrade. He and Massachusetts Senator John Kerry called it the "Tea Party downgrade."
     Excuse me?
     The Tea Party downgrade?
     The downgrade was a result of one thing. America's refusal to stop spending.
     So-called Tea Party conservatives were the only ones calling for reduced spending and decreasing the debt.
     Let me type this slowly, for Mr. Axelrod and Mr. Kerry, and their willing accomplices in the media and the rest of the government:
     America has a crushing debt problem.
     The government refuses to stop borrowing and spending, thus accumulating more and more debt.
     Conservatives in the House passed a plan to cut spending, cap future spending, and balance the federal budget. And although in my opinion it did not go far enough, it was a step in the right direction.
     Senate Democrats, in agreement with the Obama administration, tabled it without debate.
     Then last week, after many Republicans in Congress caved out of fear or the promise of political gain, Congress passed a borrowing/spending plan that raised the debt ceiling more than an additional TWO TRILLION DOLLARS. President Obama immediately signed it into law.
     The House eplained that there were "substantial cuts" over the next decade, but everybody knows those are not really cuts, but just not as big an increase over the previous year's spending, which is really tantamount to more spending. Plus, no Congress has to honor the "spending cuts promises" of a previous Congress. No Congress ever has. They must really think we are stupid.
     The president, the treasury secretary, and their cohorts in Congress and the media threatened that the debt ceiling increase proposal had to pass or our credit rating would be downgraded.
     The true Tea Party conservatives were against it.
     Anyone who says they are to blame is lying.
     Standard & Poor's, as deserving of my mistrust as they are, among others, can see the writing on the wall. The bond-rating downgrade's long-term impact on the markets remains to be seen, but one thing is sure. America's spending is out of control, and our progressive government leadership has demonstrated again and again that they simply will do nothing to reign it in.
     Don't blame the Tea Party.

Happy Birthday Mr. President... Looks like you got what you wanted...

Mr. President,
     Happy Birthday.
     America's credit rating has been downgraded for the first time in history. Totally predictable. Totally avoidable. Totally on purpose.
     I have been writing for more than a year now that this is all part of your "fundamental transformation of America." This has all been according to your plan.
     So, you got what you wanted.
     Don't even think about blaming anyone else this time. The ratings agencies claim that "Cut Cap and Balance" could have prevented a downgrade, but you and your cohorts in Congress didn't want it. You demonized the plan, as you demonize anyone with any real solution to America's debt problem.
     So now, America has been discredited. According to your ideology, we deserve it. Who does America think she is? We are no better than anybody else. 
     So, fret not, Mr. President, you will get your "redistributive change." Inflation, stock market losses, higher interest rates, and more printing of money will destroy the savings of millions of Americans.
     The forced-redistribution-of-wealth-train is happily careening faster toward the cliff, isn't it Mr. President.
     Happy Birthday.

Funny Guy Friday... Jesus could have been a great infielder... Happy Birthday Noah...

    This past Sunday, we took separate cars to church as Matthew was an altar server for the 12:00 p.m. mass. He had to be there early, but that was not why we needed separate cars.  No, we needed separate cars because Matthew does not have a pair of shoes that fit him and apparently, he was not aware of the problem until Sunday morning---an hour before church started. I am not sure what dress shoes he has been wearing in the past nine or ten weeks but whatever it was that he was wearing, they were now way too small.
    Once we procured the proper foot wear (bought two pairs from two different stores in less than 20 minutes setting a new world record), he and I got to church in plenty of time. I sat by myself for about ten minutes until Cheryl arrived with Noah and Grace. Noah turned seven on Wednesday and he is going into the second grade. This means he will be going through reconciliation and his First Holy Communion this year.
    Typically, Noah likes to draw in church, and he is quite talented. Jesus on the cross is a personal favorite although almost anything may pop up on his drawing tablet. We typically sit in the same section of the church and the folks that sit behind us will watch to see what masterpiece he is working on. He is great entertainment for both the parents and the kids. Right now, he has perfected Phineas and Ferb, and it would not be out of the question if Phineas were to pop up on the cross. I think his mind works differently than most other seven year olds.
    Anyway, since this is a big year for him, we are encouraging him to pay more attention at Sunday Mass and to the gospel. This past Sunday he came ready to roll. No drawing tablet and no markers, pencils, pens, chalks or paints (he takes his church drawings seriously). At one point, during a lull in the Mass---I think it may have been during the offertory hymn---I put my arm around Noah and snuggled up to him. I was watching Matthew on the altar and was having a proud parent moment. As is often the case, my mind wandered off to baseball and I leaned over and whispered to Noah that I may take Mattthew out later that day to hit him some ground balls. Noah looked at me as if I punched a nun and said, "Really? Really dad? That is what you are thinking about in the middle of church? Groundballs?!!!"
    Like the Grinch who Stole Christmas, when confronted by Cindy Loo Who, I thought of a  quick response. "Well no, not uh..... what I was really thinking was that Jesus would have made a great uh..... and we should always strive to be just like Jesus! Right? Isnt that what mom says we should do? I was thinking of groundballs as it applies to Jesus. It's mom's fault." 
    "Yeah. Right Dad," was Noah's response. I think he bought it.
    Our little man is turning seven and he is one of the sweetest kids in the world.
    We have three kids and they each have completely different personalities. If I did not know better, I would swear that they had three different sets of parents.
    Noah is bursting with personality. He loves to draw and is a terrific little artist, he is funny. He is considerate. He is nice. He is handsome (I have been told that he looks a lot like his dad). He is smart, and he is a stinky monkey (I just threw that last one in to see if he notices).
    We all love Noah. If you have never met him, let him introduce himself to you through this video that he made last year. Enjoy.
    Happy birthday, buddy! You are the man!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Happy Birthday Noah...

     You are amazing and wise beyond your seven years.
     I love the way you get humor. You understand when something is funny. You make jokes based on something from days ago.
     I love the way you recite poetry in a British accent. Remember the time you befriended that woman at the playground, all the while speaking in a British accent. Good bye, ol' chap.
     I love the way you wrestle with Dad, and give him the five star. You get him good.
     I love the way you can draw cartoons right out of your head. Phineas and Ferb is my latest favorite.
     I love the way you love to go to church. And how you say your prayers. You always offer to do any blessing without hesitation. I love how you love Jesus, and think Heaven will be cool.
     I love how you are considerate of others. How you say you think it would be great to lay down your life for someone else.
     I love how you make friends everywhere you go. You are a good friend to all.
     I could go on and on.
     Happy Birthday Noah! We love you.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Largest debt hike in U.S. history...

     Down is up. Wrong is right. And America is in big trouble.
     So much for reigning in spending. So much for listening to the will of the people.
     All based on lies and deception. And immoral acts of spending other people's money.
     And now the government is cheering?  What game are they watching?

"Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted
will be uprooted.
Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind.
If a blind man leads a blind man,
both will fall into a pit." ~ Matthew 15

Monday, August 1, 2011

It's the debt itself, stupid...

     We will be downgraded, but not for our limit on the debt ceiling, but for our spending. It's the debt itself, stupid. Creating more debt only makes things worse.
     You ever notice how we have to do these huge plans.
OR ELSE.  The end of the world as we know it.
     TARP. Had to do it. Wrong move.
     Stimulus. Had to do it. Wrong move.
     Health care. Had to do it. Wrong move.
     Debt plan. Had to do it. Wrong again.
     Anybody see a pattern?
     The "leadership" has made a wrong move every time.
     It's clear to me that the progressives are playing a game. And the American people are losing. So what is the game they are really playing? Who wins?
     Prepare yourselves. Internally and externally. Take your game piece off the table.
     What does that look like?
     For me, it means I put my faith in God alone. I pray every day to be under God's protection. I tell Him I'm on His side, and to keep me close.
     Second, we tell our kids that material things don't matter. That we will be okay, no matter what happens.
     Third, we took our kids out of public school, where there is an abundance of indoctrination in science and history, and an absence of a Godly worldview. Go green, yes. But don't go God. Reinvent history, yes, but don't teach the whole truth. We will teach them at home, thank you.
     Fourth, we have been storing food and supplies, preparing for trouble. I'm not sure what it will look like, but I cannot trust that the government won't render it necessary for us to have our own private food supply. They have already legislated and regulated their way toward controlling the food supply. Control the food, control the people.
     Lastly, I will not follow the "leadership" or listen to the media. They are invested in an ever-expanding government bohemoth with its boot on the neck of We the People, and they have nothing to offer my family.
     I've said it before, I'll say it again. God help us. He is the only one who can.

"Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted
will be uprooted.
Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind.
If a blind man leads a blind man,
both will fall into a pit." ~ Matthew 15
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