Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Homeschooling during morning sickness

What a wonderful post, from a mom who has homeschooled through morning sickness four times:

One thing I really struggle with when I am down with morning sickness is the Bad Mother Syndrome. I am convinced that my children are the most unruly, my house the most messy, my world the most chaotic, and I am very, very afraid I will never, ever feel "normal" again. It is during these times that it is most crucial that you ask for the Lord's guidance...Ask Him to show you TRUTH and give you the ability to PERSEVERE.

Read the rest here.

10 modern life survival skills

This is a fascinating list.

via Evangelical Outpost

The healthiest foods under $1

Great list!

via Evangelical Outpost

Eating Beef More Destructive to Environment than Driving a Car?

A Japanese study showed that the environmental footprint of producing just over two pounds of beef is greater than that of driving a car for three hours.

Angels without wings

A nice lesson from Danielle Bean about the fact that angels come in many shapes and sizes.

New words added to the dictionary

Interesting (at least I thought so).

Saturday, July 26, 2008

What’s Lurking in Your Countertop?

Who knew that granite countertops can emit dangerous levels of radon and radiation? It's rare, but here's an excerpt from one woman who had some seriously dangerous counters:

The E.P.A. recommends taking action if radon gas levels in the home exceeds 4 picocuries per liter of air (a measure of radioactive emission); about the same risk for cancer as smoking a half a pack of cigarettes per day. In Dr. Sugarman’s kitchen, the readings were 100 picocuries per liter. In her basement, where radon readings are expected to be higher because the gas usually seeps into homes from decaying uranium underground, the readings were 6 picocuries per liter.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A service that translates voicemails into text

This is a neat idea: you can call a number and leave a voicemail reminding yourself about something, and it will translate it into text and email it to you. I'm not sure about pricing, but I think at least some of their services are free.

via Rachelle Gardner

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Conquer car clutter

Some good tips.

via Lifehacker

Advice for Christian writers

I happened to stumble across the blog Rants and Ramblings today, and I'm delighted to have found it. Christian literary agent Rachelle Gardner offers tales from her line of work, including excellent, straightforward advice for Christian writers. I thought this post about how to write fiction and nonfiction book proposals was very helpful.

Smoke signals to God

A cute little inspirational story.

Advice for moms of preschoolers

Katherine, a mom of five, has some great tips for optimizing the preschool years.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

On hypocrisy

Dr. Bob has some very thought-provoking excerpts from an article on the topic of hypocrisy:

Because hypocrisy requires the hypocrite to believe in something or someone outside himself. Hypocrisy requires an aspiration to something higher or better than oneself. That is the meaning of the folk saying, “Hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue.” Hypocrisy is an imperfect, deficient attempt to be better.

Read the rest here.

Friday, July 18, 2008

What does it mean to "know, love and serve God"?

Joe at Living Catholicism has an excellent breakdown of how exactly we can know and love and serve God.

A video for my fellow Texans

The hidden children

Stories of Jewish children who were hidden by other families during the Holocaust. Click on the wardrobe on the bottom right to see a video of the touching reunion of the people involved in this story:

Jakob Steinkeller heard rumors that the Nazis were planning a "children's action" for the Zawiercie ghetto in which he and his family were forced to live. To save his 5-year-old son Frederik, he approached the Nowaks, a Polish Catholic family that lived above the workshop where he worked. Smuggled to the workshop, Frederik survived the war with the Nowaks. His father Jakob, however, was deported to the Auschwitz killing center. Frederik hid in several locations in the Nowaks' one bedroom apartment-under a table, in a bed, and even inside this wardrobe. Ensconced in these hiding places, he avoided detection by the Gestapo (which had offices in the same building).

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Cancer's unexpected blessings

A 2007 article by Tony Snow, who recently died of cancer. An excerpt:

The natural reaction [to cancer diagnosis] is to turn to God and ask him to serve as a cosmic Santa. "Dear God, make it all go away. Make everything simpler." But another voice whispers: "You have been called." Your quandary has drawn you closer to God, closer to those you love, closer to the issues that matter—and has dragged into insignificance the banal concerns that occupy our "normal time."

There's another kind of response, although usually short-lived—an inexplicable shudder of excitement, as if a clarifying moment of calamity has swept away everything trivial and tinny, and placed before us the challenge of important questions.

The moment you enter the Valley of the Shadow of Death, things change.

Read the rest here.

via DarwinCatholic

A blog post with profound wisdom

Rachel of Testosterhome offers two critical lists of Things Not to Ponder and Things to Ponder at the end of one of those looooong days. Utterly sagacious.

Homemade weed killers

Kill weeds with products you have around your house.

via Homemaking Through the Church Year

Monday, July 14, 2008

A great how-to site

This site has some very well done how-to articles on pretty much every subject imaginable. Here's an example of how to paint a room (notice the "next" and "previous" buttons with more steps).

Google 411

Google has a new free information service. Just dial 1-800-GOOG-411. More info here.

The interior mansions - thoughts on spiritual growth

I loved Philosopher Mom's series on Teresa of Avila's "interior mansions." For those of you who aren't familiar with it, St. Teresa wrote a famous book on spiritual growth (The Interior Castle) in which she described the soul as a castle in which God dwells at the very center. She describes the various mansions (rooms) that a soul inhabits as it works its way towards God. E.g. souls who linger in the first mansions have not rejected God, but are not praying frequently; souls in the second mansions have actively decided to seek God but are still vulnerable to falling back into their old selfish ways; etc.

Anyway, this is the best series of blog posts I've read in a while, and I highly recommend taking the time to at least scan it. Here's the link to all the posts in the category (they're all short). Read from the bottom up to start at the beginning.

Amazing series of pictures

A tugboat on a flooded river gets up to a bridge that it can't fit under. Click on the link to ee what happens next.

via Homemaking Through the Church Year

Can you spot the fake photos?

An amusing quiz.

A Food Court Musical

An improv group creates a spontaneous musical at a mall food court:

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Sniffing for the "information scent" - how we read online

An interesting piece about how people read on their computer screens, with some good tips about how to write for them. A great point:

[Usability expert Jakob] Nielsen champions the idea of information foraging. Humans are informavores. On the Internet, we hunt for facts. In earlier days, when switching between sites was time-consuming, we tended to stay in one place and dig. Now we assess a site quickly, looking for an "information scent." We move on if there doesn't seem to be any food around.

Read the rest here.

via Geekpress

How the Netflix queue works

An interesting behind-the-scenes look at how Netflix anticipates demand, decides which customers get hot new releases, and more.

via Geekpress

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

I recently came across this video of our National Anthem being played at Buckingham Palace the day after the 9/11 attacks. I'll never forget watching it at the time. I thought it was one of the most touching performances of the Star-Spangled Banner I'd ever seen.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

The morning kiss

Hallie has a great post where she makes the analogy that not pausing to turn your thoughts to God in the morning like not pausing to give your spouse a morning kiss.

7 most amazing caves in the world

These are some great pictures. I've been to #3 -- it was so neat.

"Obedience gives strength"

I loved this collection of quotes about obedience. One that I didn't see on there, but is a favorite:
"Do you ever wonder why God values obedience more than sacrifice? Because obedience is someone else’s idea of what you should sacrifice."

~David Manuel