Friday, August 31, 2012

The Philosophy of Instagram

I do not have an iPhone, so when Instagram came out for Android, I was incredibly excited.  I had even signed up to receive an email notification the moment it was available. Seriously.

And then I didn't know what to do.

I didn't follow anyone for a long time.  Felt too stalker-ish.  Who am I kidding? Right?

And I posted a lot of older pictures that have been on my phone for a while.  And then I visited the triplets and posted some of them.

And then...

I didn't know what to take pictures of.

My food? Only when I discover a new allergy, ok?

Myself? No. Just no.

The sky? Weird.

None of it felt important enough to take a picture of.



I started following more people and began having a lot of pictures to look at.  And I noticed that some people post a picture every day.  Of random things.  Their food, themselves, their view of the sky.  And it didn't seem weird, but pretty and important.  (And not just because they triple filtered it or posted meaningful lyrics as the caption.) Does the period go inside or outside the parenthesis? Score! Spelled parenthesis right the first time!

So maybe the issue isn't that I don't have something to take pictures of, but that I need to open my eyes to all the beautiful and interesting things that I pass by every day.

Maybe I can learn to appreciate what to me is mundane and uninteresting, but may one day, as in the next day, be a precious memory to cherish.



Like these:





Just random, now blurry (both literally the pictures are blurry and my memory is starting to fade), pictures from moments this week.

I am learning to look around rather than just moving through life with my head down.  To appreciate what I have now, rather than always anticipating what is to come.  I am learning to share the imperfections rather than attempt to maintain the illusion of an untroubled life. 

And yes, more has been happening in my life to prompt these thoughts, but Instagram has played a definite role in this shift in perception.  

And yes, I am much too philosophical for my own good.  


Gosh, I hope I used philosophical correctly...


What have you been missing this week?  
What have you taken the time to notice?

30 Day Challenge - Day 10 - Put Your Music Player on Shuffle...


Day 10 - Put your music player on shuffle and write the first ten songs that play.

1) Matchbox Twenty - Disease
2) Letterkills - Shot to the Chest
3) The Academy Is - One More Weekend
4) NSYNC - Digital Get Down
5) M.I.A. - Bucky Done Gun
6) Barlow Girls - Mirror
7) Christina Aguilera - Get Mine, Get Yours
8) Joaquin Phoenix - Cocaine Blues
9) Lifehouse - Only One
10) Telecast - Radiate

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Throw Up Thursday

Throw Up Thursday: Possibly the only reason you read my blog at all.

He wrote a song for his wife before he ever met me.  It's the song he proposed to me with. 

Cheesy, huh?  I love cheesy.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

30 Day Challenge - Day 9 - How Important You Think Education Is


Day 9: How Important Education Is

I'm very tempted to say "very" and leave it at that, but I have too many friends who are teachers to do that.

I will do my best to avoid the topic of the American education system (ex: teaching to tests rather than students). 

Let me quote Mark Twain, "Education: that which reveals to the wise, and conceals from the stupid, the vast limits of their knowledge" and more famously, "I have never let my schooling interfere with my education."

First, I believe that learning is a skill that must be taught.  This is a the most important education in a person's life...learning how to learn.  There are many, many people who don't know how to learn and instead only believe what their own brain comes up with, a very big mistake.  To learn is taught inside the classroom and in the home.  Often, it is two types of learning taught, and often only one is truly internalized.

Second, once you have been taught how to learn, you can't stop learning.  Everywhere you look is something you didn't know before, a new fact or lesson to grow from.  

Third, there is so much more to learn outside of books, and within yourself.  "Know thyself" said the Greeks, and I agree.  Know who you are first, and continue to grow in that knowledge as often as possible.  Before you seek to know everything about everyone else (for you nosey people) know yourself first.  Before you move forward with a big decision and seek out everyone else's advice, ask yourself what you would do.  No, I'm not saying "follow your heart" because the heart rarely learns a lesson, but to understand that you are your greatest advocate.

So basically, education, or the ability to learn, is incredibly important.  Don't take it for granted.





Monday, August 27, 2012

Couponing!


So I have taken up the hobby of couponing.  The picture above is my biggest haul yet.  That is roughly $45.00 worth of products.  Guess how much I paid?

12.

Oh, and I walked about with $8.50 in coupons to spend next week.

So that brings my total down to $3.50.

THREE DOLLARS!! 

For everything in that picture!

:: HAPPY DANCE ::

30 Day Challenge - Day 8 - What You Ate Today


Day 8 - What You Ate Today

Really? 

You're going to make me type it out for all the world to see?  

I guess I've had this coming for a long time....

For Breakfast, which I try never to skip, my sweet husband made me a piece of buttered toast.  I also drank a Chocolate Slimfast shake on the way to work.  That's it.

For a mid-day snack I ate a 4 pack of peanut butter crackers.

At lunchtime I ate a turkey and cheese sandwich, cheesy nacho doritos, and oreos.  Oh, and my boss brought me a piece of berry cake from Pink Elephant. And Coke. 

For dinner, we ate Little Caesar's pepperoni pizza, cheesy italian bread and marinara sauce.  Oh and Mtn. Dew. 

So that's not good.

Friday, August 24, 2012

30 Day Challenge - Day 7 - 5 Pet Peeves


Day 7 - Five Pet Peeves

ONE
Passive-Aggressiveness - As I've said before, it's for the birds.  Let's talk about issues as they come up and take care of them then.  

TWO
Loud commercials - Seriously, mute them as often as possible.  I'd rather talk to those around me than listen to your sales pitch.  Also, I've never watched a TV commercial and felt better about myself at the end of it.  I don't need that.

THREE
Tailgating - It's stupid. It's rude. It accomplishes nothing and puts people in danger. STOP IT!

FOUR
Cutting in Line - You should have gotten there earlier if you wanted to be closer in line.  Go to the back of the line you lazy bum!

FIVE
Clutter - It makes me anxious. 


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Throw Up Thursday

Throw Up Thursday: The reason Thursday is awesome.  Ya know, other than being the day before Friday.

When I hear my husband call me his wife, my heart grows, bursts, and falls back into place again.

Even if it's only when he says, "my wife interrupted you."

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

30 Day Challenge - Day 6 - Your Views On Mainstream Music


Day 6 - Your Views On Mainstream Music

I listen to music on the radio whenever I drive.  And sometimes I listen to iTunes while I work, but other than that I'm not that invested in music.  Now, I will say that Oklahoma radio stations seem to be behind the times and are often playing music that's considered old in other states.  And they play the same songs repeatedly, so they get annoying.

I like new music, but I rarely buy new music so I'm often caught listening to stuff that most people don't listen to anymore.

So my view on mainstream music is that I like the exposure to new stuff, because I won't be going to look for it myself, but I don't find it a necessity.  

Yep, that's about it. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

30 Day Challenge - Day 5 - Things You Want to Say to an Ex


Day 5: Things You Want To Say To An Ex

"Thanks for the experience.  
I can't imagine it having been better, or worse.  
Not proud of everything that happened or how it all ended, but thankful that it did in fact end. 
To be honest, I probably couldn't have survived that time without you.
So thank you for being you and being there and 
Now, for being gone."

30 Days of Blogging - Day 4


I didn't forget to post yesterday.  I just wanted to wait for the entire day to end before I bulleted it all.  Ya know, in case I had a crazy dream to report or something.

Day 4: Bullet Your Whole Day 
- Wake Up
- Get dressed
- Go to work
- Find out a loved one is very sick (unable to give details, please pray)
- leave work, get husband, go home
- coupon
- go to MIL's to do laundry (Thanks Deedra!)
- Go to music store to shop for lil SIL's clarinet
- Almost buy Batman 1 and 2, but can't find used ones
- Drool over boxed set of HP books

- Go home
- Can't remember
- Prepare things for the next day
- Watch I Love Lucy
- Go to sleep
- No crazy dreams



Sunday, August 19, 2012

30 Day Challenge: Day 3


Day 3: A Book You Love

Well, the obvious answer is Harry Potter, but that's a book series, not a single book.

So I'm gonna go with Jane Eyre.

I first read it when I was much too young to understand what it was about.  I just read it for the AR points at school so I could get free ice cream.

I read it again about two years ago and again this year.  It is a very intricate tale of a young lady's entire life.  It's long, but I can't put it down once I start.  

I love it because it's honest.  Everything doesn't end up "happily ever after."  Each character has a fatal flaw that makes them seem almost real.  It's very dramatic, but most of life is at least a little dramatic.  

Well, that's that.  A Book (of many) that I Love is Jane Eyre.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

30 Day Challenge - Day 2 - Part 3

Here is another Facebook Note I wrote that involves Womens' Rights.  

Originally written April 18, 2008 (before I had even met my now-husband) and originally titled: 

I Reserve the Right to Say NO!

"
Pretty woman is one of my favorite movies and Julia Roberts one of my favorite actresses. In Pretty Woman, Julia Roberts plays Vivian, a prostitute, a woman who sells sexual favors for rent money. There’s a scene in the movie where Vivian is frustrated and feels like she is losing controls and is screaming 

“I say who! I say when! I say WHO!” 

Funny how she had to be a prostitute to feel like she was in control of when she had sex or who she had sex with. 


I read in a magazine lately that after surveying several English language specialists, it was determined that the most underused word in the English language was “no” and he most overused was “yes.”


As a woman in America I have a ton of rights and privileges that women elsewhere do not enjoy:
I can say YES I want a driver’s license!
YES I want to vote on my President!
YES I want to be President!
YES I want to have a job and be a mommy too!
YES I want to choose when I have a baby, even if it means terminating my current pregnancy!
YES I want to have the same jobs as men and 
YES I want to get paid just as much as a man!!
But, as a woman in America, I have an often overlooked right that many women around the world have never had: the right to say NO!
As I demand the right to say Yes, I reserve my right to say NO!


NO, I will not have sex with you because you bought me three meals and took me to three movies and call it three dates and that's apparently all it takes to get an all access pass to my body.


NO, I will not have sex with you because you used the ‘magic words’: “I love you”


NO, I will not have sex with you because you call me pretty
Or beautiful
Or gorgeous
Or lovely
Or sexy
Or baby 
Or sweetie
These are not passwords to get in my pants!


NO, I will not have sex with you to affirm you as a man.


NO, I will not have sex with you because you promise to be around if there’s a consequence nine months later.


NO, I will not have sex with you because you are my boyfriend
Or my fiancée
Or a man I met in a bar after a bad day at work.


NO, I will not have sex with you to affirm my beauty as woman.


NO, I will not have sex with you and allow my value as a woman to be defined by my skills between the sheets.


NO, I will not have sex with you to prove my love for you.


NO, I will not have sex with you because everyone else is having sex.


NO, I will not have sex with you to relieve you because it’s driving you crazy.


NO, I will not have sex with you as a way to decide if we are compatible.


NO, I will not have sex with you to make you love me.


NO, I will not have sex with you to keep you around.


NO, I will not have sex with you because you are a gentleman and opened the door.


NO, I will not have sex with you as a reward for good behavior.


Let me just remind you, sirs, that you must have our permission to get what you want. And more importantly, let me remind you that you’re goal should not be to have the pleasure of getting between my legs but to have the honor to stand beside me and be called my man, my husband.


So, NO, I will not have sex with you.


I reserve my right to say No and I will exercise that right whenever necessary.


And I hope and pray I am not the only woman to do so.


“We say who, We say when.”      "







Post Script: I know I mentioned some things in the YES part that are controversial (namely, abortion).  The YES was to the fact that I currently have that right, not necessarily YES to my opinion of it.  If you'd like to discuss my opinions on that subject, without assuming that you already know them, feel free to contact me. 

Sorry, I just got asked that a lot when I first wrote it, so I thought I'd just answer it now. 

30 Day Challenge - Day 2 - Part 2

This is a Facebook note I wrote on March 28, 2009 on the subject of Women's Rights.


"Here are some comments that have been made to me, by men, about women's rights: 
"You're one of the guys now!" 
"If you want equal rights, open you're own door, carry your own luggage, and put the toilet seat up for me!" 
"You want equal rights? ok, so how do you feel about women being drafted into the military?" 

Here is my interpretation of women's rights. 

There was a time, before my time, when women did not have 
the right to vote, 
the right to choose who they would marry, 
the right to choose how many children they would have, 
the right to choose what they could wear, 
the right to choose what they could say, if they were allowed to speak 
the right to choose if they could work, 
the right to choose where they could work, 
the right to choose how much they could get paid for working. 

There was a time where a woman did not go to school while she was pregnant. 
There was a time when women were banished to caves during their period. 
There was a time when the testimony of woman who witnessed a crime was worthless. 
There was a time when it was thought to be impossible for a woman to even dream of one day being as intelligent as a man. 

Then there was a time when women stood together and demanded the right to vote. 
They began going to work. They stepped out of the kitchen and from behind the scenes to shine. They picketed outside government buildings demanding to be treated fairly. They burned their bras in protest. 

There is a time, now, when women work the same jobs as men but get paid less. And to be a woman and a minority means you are paid even less. 

I am a feminist. I believe in women's rights. 

I do NOT want to be a man, or be treated like I am a man. 

To say that feminism means that women want to be treated like men still puts men above women, as if to be treated like a man is the highest achievement a woman can reach for. It is a sexist statement. 

Men are not to be put above women. 
Women are not to be put above men. 

Men and women are not the same. 
Men and women are different, but in this difference is no inherit source of superiority of one over the other. 

To say that I want equal rights as men is to say that I do not want a man to be given preference for a job simply because he is a man and I am a woman. 

To say that I want equal rights as men is to say that when I work the same job as a man, the same hours, put in the same effort, and get the same results, I want to be paid the same amount. 

To say that I want equal rights as men is to say that I want the same opportunities as a man, that I do not want to be limited in how far I can reach because of my anatomy. 

There are many more examples. And beyond this, into the realm of personal preferences falls most everything else. 

Why should a man open a door for a woman? 
Why should a man pay for the date? 
Why should a man put the toilet lid down for women? 
Why should a man be expected to do the heavy lifting? 
These are personal choices and preferences, both by men and women. There is a difference between being a man and being a gentleman. 

If a woman wants to be a truck driver, a doctor, a heavy weight boxing champion, a preacher or President, I say go for it. There should be no stereotyping or judgement for these women. 

And if a man wants to be a stay at home dad, a chef, a nurse, a teacher, a gymnast, a cheerleader, or any other predominantly female occupation, then I say go for it. There should be no stereotyping or judgement for these men. 

Being a feminist, believing in the rights of women to not be treated differently because of their sex, is not limited to women only. Men can be feminists too. 

I think the most simple and succinct way of phrasing women's rights is to say that I love my mom and I want the best for her. To me, if you love your mom, you're a feminist."



Just posting this to show how long this has been on my mind.  And another point of view so that the original post didn't get too crazy long. 

30 Day Challenge: Day 2 - Part 1


Something I Feel Strongly About

Wow, this could be a lot of things.  But to stick to the prompt and choose only one, I'll have to go with the first one that came to mind: Women's Rights.

I'll keep it to the U.S.A.  Although women's rights are being denied all over the world. 

Women right to vote was recognized in 1920. Notice I didn't say we were given the right to vote, because we always had that right, we just weren't allowed to exercise it. 

1920!! That was only 98 years ago.  Not 200 or 1000, but women in America have had the right to vote or run for office for ONLY 98 years.  That's not near the beginning, but it's a good start. 



Here's some information from Wikipedia:

In the 26 September 2011 issue of Newsweek magazine a study was published on the rights and quality of life of women in countries around the world. The factors taken into account were legal justice, health and healthcare, education, economic opportunity, and political power. The rankings were determined by Lauren Streib by uniform criteria and available statistics. 
Top ten
RankCountryOverallJusticeHealthEducationEconomicsPolitics
1 Iceland
100.0
100.0
90.5
96.7
88.0
92.8
2 Sweden
99.2
90.8
94.8
95.5
90.3
93.1
3 Canada
96.6
100.0
92.7
92.0
91.0
66.9
4 Denmark
95.3
86.1
94.9
97.6
88.5
78.4
5 Finland
92.8
80.2
91.4
91.3
86.8
100.0
6 Switzerland
91.9
87.9
94.4
97.3
82.6
74.6
7 Norway
91.3
79.3
100.0
74.0
93.5
93.9
8 United States
89.8
82.9
92.8
97.3
83.9
68.6
9 Australia
88.2
80.7
93.3
93.9
85.3
65.1
10 Netherlands
87.7
74.0
95.0
99.0
83.0
68.4


This was done last year and the United States is only #8.  Are you kidding me?!
Our lowest score was Politics, where women are still discriminated against year after year.



Oh, and let's talk about media in America.  Women in America are supposedly free from slavery, yet we are told on a regular basis to latch ourselves to our makeup and closets!!

To be considered a professional a woman must wear the right clothes, which are often uncomfortable and even harmful to our bodies (high heels anybody?), always have perfectly placed hair, and wear make-up to conform to pictures we see and are told are "real" women when the only thing real is that they were photo-shopped!  Oh and men, they wear a suit and they're done.  Maybe shave their face.

Check out this video by Dove if you think I'm lying: Dove Evolution



Oh and the sex slave trade.  Women of all ages are still being forced into prostitution and other types of slavery every day.  Visit OATH: Oklahoman's Against the Trafficking of Humans for more information on statistics and what you can do to help.


All in all, women are still treated as second class citizens in America.  This doesn't even take into account if the women is an ethnic minority or in a lower socio-economic class, which only increases the discrimination.



Yes I feel strongly about this, but I haven't done much to change it other than write about it occasionally.  Challenge accepted.
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