Saturday, July 20, 2013

Oh, Boy Scouts, You Keep on Breaking My Heart

You know, I hate to say it, but the Boy Scouts just keep breaking my heart.
I love Scouting.  I really, really do.  I see all the good it can do in a child's life, and I believe in that good. I want to see that good.
It's hard, though, when the organization that is supposed to do all that good keeps doing things that make me sad.
The Boy Scouts have banned obese kids from their Jamboree this year.  This makes me very sad.

I love Girl Scouts.  I realize that no organization is perfect, it isn't possible, but Girl Scouts does so many things right.  My girls love it.  The Biggest One just came back from a week at camp, and she has decided that she wants to get her Gold Award, stay in scouts until she graduates from High School, and then work at the camp during the summer as her job when she isn't in school.  She loves it that much.

So, I looked at her, and told her, very basically, about what the Boy Scouts just did.  I didn't tell her who had done it.  I ask her if the Girl Scouts did this, how would she feel.  She immediately started to tear up. Her heart broke.  She said it was incredibly mean to leave people out like that.
I let her know that Girl Scouts didn't really do that, but Boy Scouts did.  We talked about it.  The Biggest One thought that was a horrible thing to do.  The Boy Scouts think that their new rule will be a motivational, and make the kids want to lose weight to go.  So, I ask her, would she be willing to work harder to go to camp, if there was a rule like this that would affect her, mind you she isn't obese at all.  She said it would make her not want to go to camp all together.  She wouldn't even want to be a part of it.  This, from the same child who just told me her goal was to be a part of that same camp forever.

See, Boy Scouts, you did it all wrong.  How about letting the fat kids come, and then trying to get them to be healthy there.  Did you also ban obese Scout Masters?  I mean, if you want to set a good example, how about starting there?
The Boy Scouts don't really have a good history with banning people. Perhaps they should have thought about how a ban on anyone worked out for them in the past, and considered the fact that bans on segments of your population tend to divide and not bring people together in a positive way.

Right now, I am doubly thankful for fact that I don't have to deal with all of this.  Girl Scouts wants to bring us together, not tear us apart, and I love them for that.
I sincerely hope that The Boy Scouts get things figured out quickly.  Like I said, I love scouting.  I love what it has the potential to do, and i would love to see that potential be brought back in all its glory with The Boy Scouts.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Update on the Netflix Situation aka Amazon rocks

A while back I posted about Netflix totally screwing over their customers and giving up on a hole bunch of content.  I was upset, and rightly so.
We had considered going to red box streaming, but hadn't figured out how just yet with the limited devices they have.
Then, it hit me, why not check out Amazon streaming?  I mean, I knew they had it, I had just never paid attention to it before.
Big mistake.
I should have been looking there all along.
We have an prime account, something I highly recommend.  It absolutely pays for itself in our house.  Now, I find out that streaming comes with it.  You can watch a ton of things for free, or, if you want, you can even rent, or buy the new stuff before it is available for free.  How awesome is that?  We don't even have to go get movies from Redbox anymore!  We can rent them right from Amazon!!
I say a big Woot, woot to that!
The kicker for me, though, is that the moment Netflix let their contract for all those Nickelodeon shows expire, Amazon picked them up.  That means Dora on tap again!!  Yeah!!  And there was much rejoicing as the sounds of angels, or The Fiesta Trio, filled the air.  Seriously.  We already pay for prime.  So this was incredible added value for us!!
On top of that, Amazon is constantly adding current content to it's streaming, an area where Netflix lags seriously behind.  Already, My Husband and I have found a new show we love to watch together on those rare nights we actually get to sit down and watch TV.  Something we would have missed out on with Netflix.
The ONLY down fall to Amazon's streaming thus far is that I can't get it on my phone yet.  Sometimes, if we are desperate, The Girls have watched netflix on either of our phones or on the Kindle.  Amazon won't stream to our phones, though I can stream, with a wireless connection, on the Kindle.  I just don't happen to have one of those everywhere I go.  I do have one on my phone.  Other than that, I have to say that Amazon has made me one seriously happy consumer.  Thrilled, actually.  I'm so over companies that think they can do anything they want to consumers, and we will just take it.  Don't let them.  Seek alternatives.  In this case, come join me at Amazon!  Its totally worth it!

P.S. In case anyone wonders, I am not paid in any way for my opinions here, I give them freely and liberally.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Thank you, Paula Deen, From The Bottom of My Southern Fried Heart

There are certain things, or people in this world that can easily move me to tears.  My mom is one of those people.   Without a doubt, I love my mom more than I could possible truly express in words, either written or spoken.  She has done more for me than so many would ever be willing to do.  She has given so much, and I don't mean things of monetary value, but things that are worth far, far more.
So, when something upsets my mother, I take note.
The other day, we were discussing the great Paula Deen witch hunt going on.  I do believe it is a witch hunt.  For whatever reason, people just want to take her down.  I'm not saying she is perfect, but I believe that reactions should be appropriate, and not outlandish.  It is, of course, one of those things that make you shake your head, but rarely do they have you truly emotionally upset, unless you are personally involved.
My mother, it seems, does take it very personally.
As we were discussing it, she became very upset.  Her words were almost shocking to me.  I had no idea how much she really likes Paula Deen.  Paula Deen means a lot to my mom in ways that I never understood.
Several years ago, my mom found out she had breast cancer.  It was bad.  She waited, though, until after I had given birth to her first grand child to allow any treatment to begin.  She wouldn't even tell us what was going on.  She, knowing that we had problems during the pregnancy, didn't want to take any chances of upsetting me.  So, three days after her first grandchild was born, she had a partial mastectomy.  After that, she started radiation and then Chemotherapy.  She did radiation for a few months, but years of chemo.  First a long bought of IV chemo, then pill form for years afterward.  It was a tough battle, but one that she has been victorious in so far.  She is a survivor.
It was also during that time that Paula Deen really came up in the TV world.  She was on TV all the time.  My mom, who works for herself in a very small business, hadn't ever had the time to sit down and watch much TV, until then.  She loved Paula on TV.  Paula was joyous and happy when mom was struggling to keep that herself.  She made great food, and my mom is a recipe addict.  She was uplifting to my mom in a time when she desperately needed that, just by doing what she wanted to do and being herself.  Paula Deen every day gave my mom something to look forward to when she wasn't allowed to leave the house, see her friends and family, or even go to church because her immune system had just bottomed out.
Paula Deen became a sort of friend to my mom, just through the magic of television.
Now, people have taken something that Paula Deen did years ago and blown it up beyond belief.  Everyone makes mistakes.  Everyone.  As Paula herself tried to say, and to paraphrase the Bible, let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
She apologized.  She says she has mended her ways.
My mom says that as long as she meant it, then she should be forgiven.  That is good enough for God and if it is good enough for God, it should be good enough for all of us.
My mom believes in Paula Deen, and I believe in my mom.
So, to Paula Deen, I want to say thank you.  From the bottom of my heart, Thank you for being there for my mom.  Thank you for giving her joy in the hardest time of her life.  I appreciate you now so much.  Just like my mom, you may never know how many people's lives you have touch in ways that you will never know about.  I'm glad you were there, though.
Thank you.
I hope you keep having your cooking classes.  I would love to be able to send my mom one of these days.  She would love it.
I really hope you decide to self publish that cooking book that was supposed to come out.  This is one I would buy two copies of, one for mom and one for me.
I hope you come back, better than ever, so that you can be a great, smiling face that the world needs.
Keep your head held high, and please keep on being you.
And most importantly, thanks again, for all those smiles and laughs you gave my mom.