Friday, August 29, 2008

Dangerous seas

Whoa! Don't watch if you're about to go on a cruise.

The scoop on natural disinfectants

A short article about whether or not cheap, natural disinfectants like vinegar and peroxide work to kill food-borne illnesses in the kitchen.

10 tips for moms of little ones

This are excellent tips. Technically the post is about having twins, but I think it applies to all moms of young children.

Fish pedicures

You can pay to have fish nibble your feet now.

Germs on the garnish lemons at restaurants - yuck!

What sacrifice would you go through to impact thousands of lives?

The sister of a woman who was recently burned badly in a plane crash (that story here) writes a beautiful post about the many lives that have been touched by the tragedy, and wonders if it is even a tragedy at all.

via Finslippy

Grandma may face jail time for refusing to give back pornographic kids book to library

Quite a story. An excerpt:

Time is running out for JoAn Karkos. The Maine woman has until 4 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29 to return the sexually explicit children's book It's Perfectly Normal to a public library in Lewiston.

If she does not, the 64-year-old grandmother may face jail time.

"I'm not giving the book back," Karkos said. "Every citizen has an obligation to protect the innocence of children." [...]

Meant as sex education for preteens and adolescents as young as 10, It's Perfectly Normal contains cartoons of naked men and women in various sexual poses, long-winded descriptions of masturbation and homosexuality as depictions of 'perfectly normal' behavior.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The girl with the apple

This is one of the most amazing stories I've ever heard, about love and loss and hope from a Holocaust survivor. It's a must-read. (It was also written up in the Orange County Register, although that version is shorter.)

Dave Barry's convention coverage

Some much-needed humor in this political season.

The Global War Against Baby Girls

Joe Carter writes:

If you were asked to name the technologies whose proliferation inadvertently threatens the human race, what would you include? IEDS? Assault rifles? Nuclear warheads?

Add this one to your list: the sonogram machine.

Read the rest here. Don't miss the chart at the bottom with the boy-to-girl ratios by province in China. Wow.

You Say Phelps,China Officials Say Feierpusi

Assigning Chinese names to Olympic athletes.

Monday, August 25, 2008

How to help a grieving family

A wonderful series of posts written by a mom who recently lost her baby daughter. Definitely worth bookmarking in case you find yourself helping a grieving family. I found the tips for bringing meals and cleaning house especially helpful.

via Rocks in my Dryer

7 Reasons to Say 'God Willing...'

Some good thoughts to ponder.

via Amy's Humble Musings

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Antarctic Fossils Paint Picture Of Much Warmer Continent


via The Deeps of Time

The uniqueness of earth

Two interesting articles: "Solar System Is Pretty Special, According To New Computer Simulation" and "No Moon, no life on Earth."

via The Deeps of Time

The carrot, the egg and the coffee bean

A cute little inspirational story I got via email.

Homeschooling culture

A mom who's about to start homeschooling her son attended a homeschooling even, and had these interesting observations:

From the church, the group traveled over to a neighborhood pool for lunch...An ordinary get-together, except for one thing. Nathaniel and I were absolutely floored by all the teenage boys we saw at this event. Tall, handsome, normally dressed teenage boys politely pushing baby strollers, watching siblings at the kids’ pool, and helping their mothers unload swimming gear from their vans. At one point, Nathaniel overheard one of these boys sit down next to another and ask, “Hi, how are you?” It startled him to hear a teenager speak in a complete, polite sentence without any of the posturing for coolness that we remember well from those years.

How refreshing!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Hope after losing a son

This is a touching story of how God worked in the lives of parents who lost their son in Afghanistan. It's a short post -- be sure to read all the way to the end. The last part is amazing.

What caused the Tunguska event?

Leave the Lights On introduced me to this mysterious, fascinating event that occurred in 1908. Read the eyewitness accounts here.

Would the discovery of alien life be a problem for Christians' faith?

Mark Shea has an interesting article. Scroll down to see C.S. Lewis' six criteria that alien life would have to meet in order to pose a problem for Christians. That part is fascinating.

Explore a hand-written Bible from the 4th century

What a great site. Here is where you can actually see each page of this Bible, which contains the oldest complete copy of the New Testament.

via Absolutely No Spin

Space shuttle launch as seen from airplane

Neat! (You may want to mute the volume...some profanity slips from the guy filming it.)

via The Cynical Christian

Monday, August 18, 2008

A lesson in charity and forgiveness

An inspiring example from St. Jane de Chantal (d. 1641), whose feast day is today:

Despite the early financial worries, she and her husband shared "one heart and one soul." They were devoted to each other and to their four children.

One way Jane shared her blessings was by giving bread and soup personally to the poor who came to her door. Often people who had just received food from her would pretend to leave, go around the house and get back in line for more. When asked why she let these people get away with this, Jane said, "What if God turned me away when I came back to him again and again with the same request?"

Her happiness was shattered when [her husband] Christophe was killed in a hunting accident. Before he died, her husband forgave the man who shot him, saying to the man, "Don't commit the sin of hating yourself when you have done nothing wrong." The heartbroken Jane, however, had to struggle with forgiveness for a long time. At first she tried just greeting him on the street. When she was able to do that, she invited him to her house. Finally she was able to forgive the man so completely that she even became godmother to his child.

Read more about her here.

A thought-provoking post about organ donation

Bekah has an interesting post on ethics and modern organ donation. The comments are good too.

Cake wrecks

This is hilarious. A bunch of photos of cakes gone wrong. I can't guarantee there won't be anything offensive if you click through -- it's amazing what people will do with cakes.

via Homemaking Through the Church Year

Wisdom for spiritual dry spells

Laura shares some great advice she found for facing her own spiritual dry spell.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Planets and stars size in scale


via John C. Wright

A how-to guide to grocery shopping only once a month

Raising Arrows has an excellent four-part series about how to do your grocery shopping only once a month. Not only does this save time, but I've heard that people who do this often save money since it minimizes spontaneous purchases and gas use. Here are the posts in the series:

Great series!

Friday, August 15, 2008

How to get started with frugal living

A wonderful series at Like Merchant Ships.

A couple writes a cutesy story about their upcoming abortion in the New York Times

I found this article perplexing. It's from a few months ago, where a couple talks about having a romantic evening at home, the girlfriend not wanting to drink because she's pregnant, even though she has an abortion scheduled for two days later. The author writes: "Even though the pregnancy is scheduled to be terminated in two days, there’s still something — someone? — inside of her she doesn’t want to hurt." Unbelievable.

It reminds me of this article, also from the Times, where a woman writes casually about how she aborted two of her triplets, relieved that she won't have to shop at Costco. She writes: "I looked at Peter and asked the doctor: 'Is it possible to get rid of one of them? Or two of them?' The obstetrician wasn't an expert in selective reduction, but she knew that with a shot of potassium chloride you could eliminate one or more." Again, unbelievable.

via Jordan

An elaborate mirror prank

The actors in the mirror are pretty impressive!

Stepmom blues

Jill talks about how she often gets a deer-in-the-headlights reaction when it comes up at mommy events that she's the stepmom, and gives some tips for making conversation with stepmoms that won't verge into uncomfortable territory.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

More privacy concerns with Google Street View

A man was videoed while passed out drunk on a lawn.

From tragedy to triumph

The amazing story of Lopez Lomong:

During a Sunday morning Mass 17 years ago, the 6-year-old Lomong, along with about 100 other children, was taken at gunpoint from his parents, driven away blindfolded in a truck and dumped in a cramped, windowless, one-room prison full of boys. There, they were fed millet full of barely visible sand, which prevented proper digestion, and, within days, gradually led to the death of boy after boy.

"They would go to sleep and never stand up again. 'Tomorrow will be my day,'" Lomong said. "But I had three angels." They were slightly older boys who told him to eat just enough of the death gruel to stay alive, but not enough to kill himself. After three weeks, the older trio discovered a hole in a fence. At midnight, crawling while guards talked, stopping when they fell silent, then crawling until they were outside the compound, the four boys began to run. "That is where my race started," Lomong said.

Read the rest here. It's a must-read.

A 12-year-old sings Ave Maria

Monday, August 11, 2008

What your work space can reveal about your personality

via Inside Catholic

The Hijabi 15

Tradicionalista talks about putting on the "hijabi 15," gaining weight after adopting traditional Muslim conservative dress practices. Since I've been dressing more modestly than I used to, I've noticed the same thing.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Friday, August 8, 2008

"I wish I could see those two pink lines again"

I just had to reprint this comment by a woman named Susan to Danielle Bean's great article at Inside Catholic. I thought she had such an inspiring attitude:

I have nine grown up children...I was a battle weary mother, also, when I was having my kids. We were very poor at some hot water, cooking and heating with wood, used clothes and food stamps type poor. I admit to not being happy when I was pregnant with the ninth, to say the least...yet she turned out to be a delight.

Now I am 58 and long past menopause. When I read the bit about standing in the bathroom looking at the little pink lines, my immediate reaction was, "I wish that could still happen to me!" (Only for me it was standing in the Birthright office seeing a tube of fluid turn blue, as there were no home pregnancy tests at that point.) I remember when I was a new mother, a woman who had raised 14 kids (5 of her sister's, who died, and 9 of her own) came up to me and told me she still wished she could have another baby.

It's the most wonderful thing in the world. It seems so difficult at the time, you get so tired, there is so much work, there is never enough money. But later you remember how easy it was to delight them when they were little, how excited they were over a picnic at the local lake, how much they liked to hear you read stories, all of those wonderful things.

So to mothers I say, have as many as you feel you responsibly can...and then if others come nevertheless, be happy over those also.

Maria Chapman's last message

This gave me chills.

What's wrong with pornography?

This article makes the case for all the different ways that pornography is destructive to the individual and to society. Here's an excerpt from the part talking about its link to violence against women:

Consider, for example, a study done in the Oklahoma City area. When 150 sexually-oriented businesses were closed, the rate of rape decreased 27 percent in five years, while the rate in the rest of the country increased 19 percent. In Phoenix, Arizona, neighborhoods with porn outlets had 500 percent more sex offenses than neighborhoods without them.

Ted Bundy raped and killed dozens of women. He was sentenced to die in the electric chair and requested that his last interview be with Dr. James Dobson, the founder of Focus on the Family. In that meeting, Bundy talked openly about pornography and told Dr. Dobson that his struggles all began there. He explained that all of his fellow inmates had an obsession with pornography before going to prison. Porn magazines, web sites, and videos lay at the root of innumerable rapes and murders. [Note: this is the interview I linked to here. -JF]

Gas price humor

Some comic relief on the subject of gas prices.

via Amy's Humble Musings

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Ted Bundy's last interview

This is one of the most fascinating, chilling, disturbing things I've read in a while. The day before being executed, Ted Bundy asked to sit down with James Dobson (found of Focus on the Family) and explain to him how he went from a nice kid raised in a happy Christian home to being a serial rapist and murderer.

Steven Curtis Chapman on Good Morning America

This interview with the Chapmans about the death of their daughter is beautiful and touching.

via Steppin' Heavenward

Genius Junk Food: 6 Snacks That Are Actually Good For You


via Evangelical Outpost

One for the opera fans

I'm not much of an opera lover, but this collection of various opera stars singing the same song was neat.

via Islam to Catholic

You cannot deduce an "ought" from an "is"

John C. Wright on atheist morality.

Rediscovering God

A touching post from Y and Joy Unexpected, who's been going through a sort of religious awakening recently.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Physics and origami

A physicist and origami master explains how knowledge of physics has revolutionized the practice of origami. Fascinating!

via Inside Catholic Video Room

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Some basic information about wine

I thought this was a nice, concise summary about wine.

Escape from Nihilism

I've only had a moment to scan this, but it looks good:

Because the presence of God made me more and more uncomfortable, I began looking for reasons to believe that He didn't exist. It's a funny thing about us human beings: not many of us doubt God's existence and then start sinning. Most of us sin and then start doubting His existence.

Read the rest here.

via Jinxblog

Post-Traumatic-Stress Disorder and childbirth

An interesting article from the Wall Street Journal:

PTSD is most commonly associated with combat veterans and victims of violent crime, but medical experts say it also can be brought on by a very painful or complicated labor and delivery in which a woman believes she or her baby might die. Symptoms can include anxiety, flashbacks and a numbness to daily life. Even as medical advances have resulted in many more lives saved during high-risk births, extreme medical interventions can leave a mother severely stressed -- especially if she feels powerless or mistreated by health providers.

Read the rest here.

Sunday, August 3, 2008