Archive for June, 2008

Summer Fun

Posted in kids, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on June 30, 2008 by simpleheresy

We always have so much fun when we visit feebeeglee and the little glees too!  The birthday party went just swimmingly… a summer time success! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Born on a Blue Day… Finished!

Posted in books, social disorders, Uncategorized with tags , , on June 28, 2008 by simpleheresy

What a good book! I throughly enjoyed reading about Danial Tammet’s life. The autobiography is simple and engaging. I could feel the wandering of his mind when he almost, absent minded-ly, discussed the date and history of the museum he visited to perform the recitation of pi. How he would talk briefly about the details and then bring himself back to the subject at hand… himself. What a great guy! I admire Daniels parents and Neil, Daniel’s partner. I hope that everyone finds a partner so completing as Neil is for Daniel.

At many points in the book I could understand his explanations completely. It was aha moment after aha moment! The paragraph starting on page 75 was especially familiar to me!

“Conversations in the class or in the playground were regularly impeded by my inability to stay ‘on topic.’ I often found my mind wandering, in part because I remember so much of what I see and read and a chance word or name in the middle of a conversation can cause a flood of associations in my mind like a domino effect. … The sequence of my thoughts is not always logical, but often comes together by a form of visual association. …”

The fact that his connection sequence ends in one of my favorite movies, The Italian Job, was funny as well!

Chapter 10 was unique. He really feels the numbers. It was difficult for me to read because number have not always been my friends. I had to set my dislike of numbers aside to discover his admiration. His description of numerical landscapes was intriguing. Learning how the Babylonians and Greeks came close to calculating pi was very interesting, too. As were the pi poems!

I imagine if I were ever to meet Daniel Tammet I would feel much the way he did when he met the famous savant Kim Peek. An awe… an interesting connection exists but the host’s everyday functionings are well beyond my capacity.

While reading the books closing… when Daniel describes “perfect moments” I started to tear. I understand those glimpses of heaven on earth and, I too, hope that the memory of them, strung all together, will give a sneak peek of the time after this life.

I give “Born on a Blue Day” 5 stars and put it on the list of recommended reading for anyone who is on the autistic spectrum or knows someone who is!

Political Songs

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on June 24, 2008 by simpleheresy

Two very different songs… I like them both. The first one, by Sheryl Crow and the second by NIN.

Sheryl Crow “Out of our heads” Lyrics

If you feel you wanna fight me

There’s a chain around your mind

When something is holding you tightly

What is real is so hard to find

Losing babies to genocide
Oh where’s the meaning in that plight
Can’t you see that we’ve really bought into
Every word they proclaimed and every lie, oh

If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts
If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts

Someone’s feeding on your anger
Someone’s been whispering in your ear
You’ve seen his face before
You’ve been played before
These aren’t the words you need to hear

Through the dawn of darkness blindly
You have blood upon your hands
All the world will treat you kindly
But only the heart can understand, oh understand

If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts
Children of Abraham lay down your fears, swallow your
Tears and look to your heart

If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts
Children of Abraham lay down your fears, swallow your
Tears and look to your heart

Every man is his own prophet
Oh every prophet just a man
I say all the women stand up, say yes to themselves
Teach your children best you can

Let every man bow to the best in himself
We’re not killing any more
We’re the wisest ones, everybody listen
‘Cause you can’t fight this feeling any more, oh anymore

If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts
Children of Abraham lay down your fears, swallow your
Tears and look to your heart

If we could only get out of our heads, out of our heads
And into our hearts
Children of Abraham lay down your fears, swallow your
Tears and look to your heart

NIN “Letting You” Lyrics

The sky is painted black
The smoke pours out the stack
One hand upon your heart
One hand behind your back
You train us how to act
You keep the fear intact
The imminent attack
Everything is right on track

And we are letting you get away
We are letting you get away with it

Upon our plates to feed
The dying left to bleed
How much we really need
Your politics of greed
The cancer takes ahold
The wolf is in the fold
Our destiny’s been sold
We do just what we’re told

And we are letting you get away
We are letting you get away with it

Your armies filled with hate
Believing your charade
Begin to suffocate
For us it’s far too late

And we are letting you get away
We are letting you get away with it

Personality Test

Posted in Uncategorized on June 22, 2008 by simpleheresy

Take this Jung quiz and see what type of personality you have.  I am INFJ (today). 🙂

Help! Vote for my poem!

Posted in Art, Uncategorized with tags , , on June 21, 2008 by simpleheresy

All you have to do is click the link and vote for my poem. So easy. It’s my first published work ever. I’m thrilled and would really appreciate your support. Thanks so much!

http://www.poetry.com/voteforme/poemvote1.asp?PID=13114062

I’m 65% Conservationist

Posted in Uncategorized on June 19, 2008 by simpleheresy

So what’s the other 35%?

Check the true statements off the list.

Food
_x__ I grow some of my own food
_x__ I buy local produce (it takes energy to transport it)
_x__ I buy organic produce
___ I re-use paper shopping bags or use canvas shopping bags
___ I walk, bike, bus or carpool to the store
_x__ I don’t buy highly packaged foods
_x__ I eat lower on the food chain (more fruits and vegetables, little or no
meat)
___ I compost kitchen vegetable scraps
_x__ I don’t use chemical pesticides in the garden; I use only natural
methods
_x__ I use Permaculture principles to grow food

Household and Personal Items
_x__ I buy only what I need
_x__ I don’t shop as a hobby or pastime or as therapy
_x__ I buy previously owned (used) things at second-hand stores or yard sales
_x__ I look for free items in the alleys during bulk pick-up
___ I use freecycle.com
___ I sometimes host or attend a free-for-all party (free item swap)
_x__ I donate things I no longer need
_x__ I make do with what I have in order to live more simply
_x__ I make my own homemade things rather than buying
_x__ I put extra effort into taking care of what I have so it lasts longer
___ I repair rather than discard items
_x__ I put good items I no longer need in front of my house with a sign: FREE
___ I recycle properly
___ I cut up scrap paper to reuse as note paper
_x__ I don’t use chemical cleaning products; only natural cleaning products
_x__ I use natural soaps and deodorants
___ I use pesticide free cotton or hemp clothing
___ I make my own clothing
_x__ I don’t buy products in aerosol spray cans

Transportation
___ I frequent stores, schools, churches, and other services within walking
or biking distance
_x__ I call ahead to stores rather than driving around to look for an item I
need.
___ I drive a hybrid or electric car, or a smaller gas engine car
___ I always walk, bike, or take the bus
_x__ I conduct business by phone instead of driving there
_x__ I send correspondence by e-mail rather than snail-mail
_x__ I maintain my vehicle properly, including inflating the tires
___ When driving, I drive no more than 55 mph.
_x__ When driving, I anticipate stops, taking my foot off the accelerator
ahead of time
___ I am working on developing friendships within walking and biking
distance of my house
_x__ I vacation locally rather than traveling to distant places
Electricity and Natural Gas
_x__ I have replaced all my incandescent light bulbs with compact
fluorescents
_x__ I turn off lights when not using them
_x__ I turn up the thermostat at least 2 degrees in the summer and use a fan
to help feel cool
_x__ I close blinds and curtains in unused rooms or when I’m not home
_x__ In the summer I close the blinds or curtains in those windows where the
sun is coming in
_x__ In the winter, I purposely let the sun come in during the day to heat
the house
_x__ I have planted trees on the East and West sides of the house
_x__ I have planted deciduous trees on the South side of the house
_x__ I have sun shades over the East, West, and South side windows and of the
house in the summer
_x__ I have plants near the house to help keep it cool from the evaporation
through the leaves
___ I use an evaporative cooler rather than air conditioning whenever
possible
_x__ I properly maintain my evaporative cooler and air conditioner
_x__ I help regulate the indoor temperature by opening and closing windows
_x__ I don’t leave the house or refrigerator doors open longer than necessary
___ I keep the coils on the back of the refrigerator clean
___ I have made or bought a sun oven and cook in the sun
___ I prepare cold meals (salads, soups, etc.) in the summer
_x__ I minimize my indoor cooking and baking in the summer
_x__ I don’t leave fans on when nobody is in the room
_x__ I don’t leave the TV on unnecessarily
_x__ I read, sew, visit friends, etc. instead of watching TV
_x__ I watch for household vampires: items which use electricity even when
not turned on (TV, stereo, cell phone chargers, etc.)
___ I have installed a solar hot water system
___ I have installed solar voltaic panels to produce electricity
_x__ I buy only energy efficient appliances when replacing older appliances
_x__ I don’t leave the computer on when not in use. I have set the energy
saving options so it shuts off the monitor and computer when not used for 10
minutes.
_x__ I hang my laundry outdoors to dry
_x__ I wash only full loads of laundry
___ I wash the dishes by hand
___ I buy “clean energy” from the electric company
_x__ I adjust my schedule to take advantage of natural daylight

Water
___ I reuse water from my shower, bathroom sink, and/or washing machine
(graywater)
___ I shower outdoors
_x__ I plant native, low-water-use trees and shrubs (zeriscape)
___ I use the rain water from the roof for the plants
_x__ I have heavily mulched outdoor planting areas to maintain moisture
_x__ I don’t let the water run while I’m brushing my teeth
___ I use a shut-off valve on the shower nozzle to shut off the water while
lathering
_x__ I have installed a low-water use shower head
___ I have replaced my lawn with mulch and edibles
___ If I have a pool, I keep it covered to reduce evaporation
_x__ I maintain my household in perfect working condition to avoid wasting
any water
___ I maintain outdoor sprinkler systems in good working condition and avoid
over-watering
_x__ I don’t use a sprinkler… only a hand held watering can when I need to water.

Add up the ones you checked. Multiply your answer by 100 and divide by 83 to find out how conservative you are.
Put your percentage in the subject line and Fwd to your friends to see how conservative they are!

A New Kind of White Elephant

Posted in Art, Homeschooling, kids with tags , , , on June 16, 2008 by simpleheresy

Last time we were at Grandma Z’s we talked about the soap carvings she had made as a child. So inspired, we made our own soap creations. Zak was thrilled to use a pocket knife all by himself and Sam really liked the feeling of smooshy soap.

Sam started to make a butterfly that morphed into a heart that morphed into a fish head and she finally ended up adding water (drop by drop) to make bath balls!

Zak made a baby elephant but wasn’t happy with the finished product because the trunk broke off.

This is a project we’ll be doing again!