I don’t watch American Idol and honestly have no interest. I’ve heard the cut-off age is 28, so I just missed my chances at stardom. Rats! But there’s still hope for our family and it rests in our two crooners (the youngest is pictured here).
Public Opinion On Abortion
Published: January 29, 2009
To the Editor:
President Obama ordered the close of Guantanamo to restore America’s moral standing. Water boarding and torture do not embody the ideals of our country. Public opinion of these procedures is understandably negative after (the public has) read descriptions of what happens or seen reenactments.
President Obama’s other major accomplishment in his first days of office was to drastically increase and promote the availability of taxpayer-funded abortion. If we witnessed the procedure (or a reenactment of the procedure) perhaps the public reaction to this executive order would have been more than a stifled yawn. There is no worse torture than violent dismemberment. Babies deserve at least as much protection under the law as the masterminds of 9/11 or the terrorists that are shooting at our troops.
Babies are good; killing them is wrong; it’s time to end abortion.
A. Todd Black, Cumming
Interestingly, the most recent Gallup Poll I’ve seen shows that only 35 percent of Americans approved of President Obama’s repeal of the Mexico City Policy, which allows funding for overseas family planning groups that perform abortions.
The first feeling I experienced when I stumbled across the tragic news was shock. I had the honor of meeting Amy at the Catholic New Media Celebration last June. I probably yammered on and made a fool of myself (I tend to get overly chatty when I’m nervous) because I was so humbled to meet a writer I admire and someone who has done so much for the Church. But even if I’d never met her in the flesh, I suspect the news of her husband’s untimely death would have come as no less of a shock.
In the blogosphere, we catch a glimpse into the lives of others. We see snippets of their existence – their joys, their sorrows, stills of their kids laughing or crying. It’s tempting to feel like we know these people and of course we don’t. Not really. Still, I’ve found that when I hear of something good or bad happening to a blogger I “know,” I can’t help but experience a sense of heightened empathy.
Right now I find myself aching for Amy and all those who have lost a spouse or a child. I also find myself to be bowled over by the tenancy of life on earth. We’re here one day and gone the next, and we know not the hour when we’ll be face to face with our or a loved one’s mortality.
However, what I keep reminding myself as I think about Amy’s loss as well as another tragedy a friend has recently suffered is that as Christians, we have our faith in the redemption of suffering and in the cross to help us cope with loss (how do others – those who don’t believe that suffering and death are anything but pain and an end do it?). It is this faith – no matter how weak it feels at times – that can buoy us in the river of sorrow in which we sometimes suddenly find ourselves swimming. Thank God for that.
I’m wondering if the NSA is hiring. My toddler (AKA Rachel-Scissors-Hands) has become quite adept at destroying paper documents, leaving only a trail of shreds in the wake of her quick and fierce fingers. Fortunately, she is very careful with books and prefers looking at their pages than obliterating them. However, magazines, stranded pieces of mail, coloring book pages, watch out.
I might be giving birth to a Spanish-speaking prodigy.
Rachel Marie was making a big mess during lunch the other day when Madeline said, “I wasn’t messy like that, was I?”
“Sometimes,” I told her. “But you were really a pretty neat eater compared to your sister.
We went on to discuss how wonderful it is that she and her sister are so unique.
I added, “And who knows what the new baby will be like?”
“Yeah,” said Madeline. “She may be a neat eater like me or messy like Baby Rae.”
“Or she may have green eyes like me and not brown eyes like your daddy, you, and your sister,” I said.
“And maybe she’ll speak Spanish.”
“Well, we’d have to teach her Spanish.”
“No,” Madeline argued. “She might be able to speak Spanish when she’s born. You never know.”
Later she informed me that she was just “tidding.” (Ks = Ts in Madeline-speak.)
The new sleeping arrangement is improving every day, and I realize once again that I must not let small scale domestic dramas get me down (although one could argue that cumulative sleep deprivation is nothing to yawn about).
For those of you who haven’t been following my bedtime stories, Rae, our 20-month-old, recently boycotted her crib after sleeping over at her grandparents’. With the arrival of the new baby around the corner, we decided to go ahead and follow her lead and allow her to make the switch to her big sister’s room. Rae, our born sleeper, is still getting a little less shut-eye, but Madeline goes to bed so easily now and no longer journeys into my husband and my room anymore (and of course, it’s bittersweet; we miss feeling her little body between us some nights, but we are sleeping better not having to share a bed with a 37-pound wiggle worm). All in all, I’m very pleased with the transition, and the girls are, too, as the picture indicates.
A few weeks ago I had two friends and their kids over for lunch and socializing. I adapted a vegetable soup from Cooking Rocks! Rachael Ray 30-Minute Meals for Kids, and it was a big hit. My friends wanted the recipe and I thought some of you might enjoy making this easy, cheesy, kid-pleasing soup, too. Enjoy!
Italian Alphabet Soup
1 wedge of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese with the rind on
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup marinara sauce
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
5 cups chicken stock (1 quart-size box and one 8-ounce box)
1 cup alphabet or other smaller-sized pasta
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables
Grate some of the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and set aside to sprinkle over soup. Trim off the rind of the cheese and reserve for later.
Place a medium-sized soup pot over medium heat. Add olive oil and crushed garlic. Cook about 2 minutes. Add tomato paste, marinara sauce, and Italian seasoning, and stir. Slowly add chicken stock. Place a lid on pot and bring to boil. Once broth is boiling, stir in the pasta and the cheese rind. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until the pasta is tender, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add the vegetables and salt and pepper to taste.
Serve pasta with grated cheese.
For more quick takes, please visit Jen’s Conversion Diary.