Monday, April 27, 2015

Fixing MLB's Problems

It's officially that time in baseball season where sports writers write articles with a bunch of ideas on how to fix Major League Baseball's two biggest issues. None of those ideas will be taken seriously by the MLB but some of them should. So Josh and I started talking about what they can try to solve their two big problems:

1. Make the games faster
2. Keeps fans interest

The best way to keep fans interested is to improve scoring. I have noticed that the games that go faster have more scoring. Partially because there aren't extra innings. Focusing on batters stepping out of the box and pitchers taking a while to actually throw the ball help. But that only gives you 5 - 10 minutes back. That doesn't help in a game lasting over three hours and fifteen minutes. Rules to encourage higher scorings make a big difference in fan interest for the NHL, the NFL, and the NBA. It's become a pitcher's game but that gets frustrating for fans.

1. Add a 10th batter.

It's the best of both worlds. The pitcher bats in both leagues and both leagues have Designated Hitters. It reduces injuries in AL pitchers if they are trained for being batters as well. It also evens up the chances for the World Series.

2. Hit by pitch is 2nd base not first.

That runner in scoring position threat might make pitchers aim better. It also leads to more RBI opportunities.

3. Extra run point Home Runs.

If a batter hits a home run, their team gets credit for each player scored run plus a bonus run. 2 runs for 1 player, 3 for 2 players, ect....... and 5 for grand slams.

4. No second baseman

The short stop usually get the on base outs anyway. The first baseman can get more balls. This leads to more players on second base. Scoring position. There are still opportunities to get them out. But it increases RBI opportunities.

5. Extra Inning Home Run Derby

I can't find the article but one writer had that idea. After the 10th inning go to HR derby mode until you get a winner. This only works if the pitcher is from the batter's team. A pitcher new to the game from the same team to be specific.

6. Non-adjustable strike zone

Different umpires have different strike zones. I say the strike zone should be defined as in front of the catchers pads. At least it would be the same size for all players!

I think most of these ideas would be easy to implement! It's important to limit stall time for pitchers and batters alike. However, these are ideas that would make a difference in speeding up the game. At minimum it makes it more interesting to watch and the time goes faster!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

What I Can't Say

Because of how the internet works, we are warned to be careful. Everything you type, say in a video, do in a video, and every picture you post can be seen by everyone. Forever.  That goofy drunk selfie might seem like a good idea to show your friends, but even on private profiles it might prevent you from getting your dream job..............................fifteen years later. It can be retrieved even after being deleted by someone with the right computer skills.

Because of that, you have to keep some things about yourself secret. You can't actually share how you really feel. You can't talk about everything going on in your life. Because everyone can see it. That might make some see you differently, forever.

Because of how the internet works there are things I can't blog about. That's the main reason I haven't posted that often recently. I can't talk about the big things going on in our lives right now. So finding acceptable blog posts have been difficult.

There are too many things I can't say. Too many things that can't be accessible to everyone. Things I would feel better about if I can work it out through writing. But that could never end up in such a sensitive place. I still type them up. Into word documents that remain on my computer. But those words can never be posted here.

I am not good with secrets. I can't lie. The truth is too important to me. In fact, the other day I didn't want to go outside. Because when someone asks "how are you?" I have to answer with the socially acceptable "fine" but I'm not fine. It's been frustrating to lie to so many people.

So I called a close friend. Her son is Zach's best friend. She lives really close so we took a walk together. FINALLY! Someone who knows all of my secrets! It felt so good to be able to talk about them! We ended up sticking around for lunch. Our families are close. They are going through something similar so we were able to help them too! We all felt better after that unplanned four hour play date! Only my very closest of friends know all of my secrets. Literally, a handful. If you know one specific secret, you know all of my secrets. You will know if you know that specific secret without me telling you which one.

Being a literal person who hates secrets and lies makes life extra hard sometimes. I know a lot of people would be supportive if I told them, but the secrets are too big to share. Don't worry, it's nothing illegal. In fact, one secret I'm proud of. I would tell more people about it.

But it's not only my secret. So I must keep it even from people I want to share it with. My family sometimes asks me to take something down either from here or on facebook. I take into consideration who said it, what they said, and if their reason is a good one. Most of the time I take it down. But not always. There are a couple of people I have decided I will never take anything down for. Bossy,
manipulative people who I owe no explanation to. But mostly, I respect reasonable requests from reasonable people who I know support me.

I'm not alone. We all have secrets. Things we can't post about. That's why we sometimes see vague comments on facebook. "I hate people" comes from someone clearly going through something specific. But, they won't be honest about what happened. Unless, you are a close friend! Everyone who sees it knows there is more to what's going on. But we also know if they wanted to tell us, they would.

It's too easy to forget that you have to be careful about what you say and do online. It's such an important part of everyday life. But bad things can happen if you aren't careful. Even if it takes a long time to happen. We all have things we can't say online. Sometimes, no matter how bad you want to, the smart decision is to not say or do it.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Toilet Paper Challenge

Do you ever feel like you're the only one in your home that changes the toilet paper? This happens when everyone living in a home has a different definition of when it's low enough to be changed. So I decided to create a chart. I just wanted to track who changed the toilet paper and when. I just planned to get an idea of how often it gets changed and who changes it more. Two days later, I doubt it's going to show what was going on before. Thanks to an almost-six-year old.

I made the chart after Zach and Josh were in bed. We have one bathroom so even the double rolls only last a little more then a day. The first thing they both wanted to do Sunday night was move the "just in case" roll close to the toilet. Since the "in use" roll was still pretty full, I shot them both down. When it was time to move a new "just in case" roll over, Zach beat Josh to it. When he beat Josh to it this morning, Josh declared "this game is rigged!" So I added a star. A star is worth 1/2 a point and acknowledges when someone PLANNED to change it but was beaten to it.

It wasn't meant to be a game. But what we're all getting out of it is a better sense for when the "in use" roll is low enough to bring out a "just in case" roll. I haven't had to change it since that first time! I used to change is basically every day! So far, Zach hasn't asked what the prize will be for the winner or when the "game" will be over.

The "game" is over when we're ready for it to be over. When it's not fun anymore and we all have a similar definition for when to move the "just in case" roll over. As for the prize, I'll make the winner's favorite dinner. That might not count though. I do that anyway. I have to think of something! I'll crochet something for the winner!

It's an interesting experiment. It's also a basic truth. In most homes with multiple people, at least one person feels like they are the only one changing the toilet paper. Maybe companies should print a line on the bottom 1/2 inch to eliminate this debate. When you hit the line, be prepared!

Monday, April 06, 2015

Police Protection Out Of State

I feel strongly about gun laws. While my views have loosened a little, there are two things I have always believed:

1. Background checks should be required

and

2. Law Enforcement permits should be national, not by state.

I'll use New Jersey as an example. You have to have a permit to have a gun. I know some gun owners but have never seen anyone not in a law enforcement uniform carrying a gun. Below are the links to the NJ State Police website on firearms and NRA's information on NJ right to carry laws.

NRA Carrying laws

https://www.nraila.org/gun-laws/state-gun-laws/new-jersey/

State Police Website

http://www.state.nj.us/njsp/info/pdf/firearms/062408_title13ch54.pdf

http://www.state.nj.us/njsp/about/fire_trans.html

http://www.state.nj.us/njsp/about/fire_ag2.html

The top link in the State Police section is long but I like one big thing I read. Part of getting a permit is showing you know how to safely use a gun. I do think that helps reduce accidents.

There is a reason I think permits for Law Enforcement should be national and not by state. They are trained to save lives. Calling 911 is important, but it takes time for help to arrive. Sometimes all you have is a minute. If a customer in a business being robbed is in law enforcement in a different state, they have the training to help while the 911 team arrives. Their gun and training could very well save lives. What happens when they do use their gun and training to save lives, but they don't have a permit in that state? They shouldn't get in trouble for protecting innocent people and helping capture a bad guy.

The above scenario is probably rare. But you never know the time when a Pennsylvania Police Officer could save someone's life even if they don't have a New Jersey permit. Why wouldn't a New Jersey police officer racing to get to a bank robbery NOT appreciate the police officer from Pennsylvania inside the bank using their training to try to control the situation?

When criminals are running through different states, don't they have to work together to catch the bad people? They already have to trust each other for that reason. Why shouldn't they trust each other when necessary in the situations I mentioned? In the end, they all have the same goal. That means they are on the same team. Doesn't it makes sense for them all to have the tools they need to save lives no matter where they are?

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

What Religious Freedom Means


Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

http://constitutioncenter.org/constitution/the-amendments/amendment-1-freedom-of-religion-press-expression

That is the first amendment. When it comes to religion, it says two things:

1. Congress cannot declare a specific religion to be the national religion
2. You have the freedom to PRACTICE any religion you want.

PRACTICE

THAT'S the key word in our American 'Holy Wars'.


Practice means you can take off from work when your religion says (example: Sundays)

Practice means you can display or do what's needed to perform a religious ritual or tradition (lighting a menorah)

Practice means you can dress as your religion dictates (Kufi's, Muslim skull caps)


Nothing in the amendment allows religion to be used as discrimination! Quite the opposite! It is written to allow people to practice their religion without it effecting basics like their job status.

Practice DOESN'T mean you can refuse to do business with a same sex couple

Practice DOESN'T mean you can fire a non-married woman for getting pregnant

Practice DOESN'T mean you can fire a woman for receiving fertility treatment

Practice DOESN'T give you the right to fire or pass on an employee because they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender

Their religious beliefs might be different from yours. They have the right to use birth control or love who they really love. If you are going to try to prevent them from having these things because of your own prejudices, they have the right to use their religious freedom to make you do them anyway!

Using religion as an excuse to force these prejudices on others, is the equivalent to "Honor Killings". It's hypocritical to be against "Honor Killings" and support using religion to avoid covering employee birth control, refusing to hire or do business with gay people, and any other form of outright discrimination!

1practice


: to live according to the customs and teachings of (a religion)

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/practice

You are entitled to believe what from your religion makes sense to you. But this law means you can't force that on someone else. Just like you wouldn't want their beliefs being forced on you! They have a right to their own beliefs. If you choose to believe the part of your religion that is anti-GLBT, anti-birth control, and anti-fertility treatment, you are choosing to be a prejudice person. That's your decision. It crosses the line when you impose your views on those who disagree and try to prevent them from their own rights to freedom. You don't have to like that same sex couples can legally marry or that some women use fertility treatment or birth control, but it's not your place to make it so they CAN'T!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Sensing Labor

It's basic knowledge. Senses help with memory. Familiar sights, sounds, and smells help you remember a place you have been. A familiar taste helps with recalling all or part of a recipe. The sense of touch can trigger the most comforting of memories. It's why I am such a big hugger.

I still remember what labor felt like and Zach is almost six. I'm not talking about the pain of labor. I physically felt him coming out. He pushed himself out. I remember the feeling against my uterus as he did that with his feet! I remember the feeling of his head popping out and the slide of every inch after. It's not easy to describe what it felt like. But if I close my eyes I can still vividly feel his birth. Not the pain. HIM! The once in a lifetime experience of give birth to this specific child!

I had been loosing patience in the last two months of my pregnancy. The ultrasounds are a nice way to sort of see your baby. But they don't show eye color and hair color. They don't show dimples. All I wanted in those last two months were to see what he looked like. I had so much heartburn I kept saying "this kid better have hair!" Sure enough, he had a very full head of hair. People always complement him on the blue eyes that look like mine and that precious dimple he got from Josh. I look at him now and remember the torture of not knowing what he looked like.

The hospital played the music to 'Rock A By Baby' whenever a baby was delivered. But I didn't hear it when Zach was born. I was told later that they did play it though. Instead, I heard my Dad trying to enter the delivery room while the doctor was still removing the umbilical cord. I had to stop pushing to tell him to stay put! Hearing my Dad's voice from the hall made me happy though. He was very excited to become a Grandfather! That sound reminded me how lucky Zach is to have four fabulous grandparents who love him very much! He's lucky they are all a part of his life.

I don't remember how my post-delivery dinner tasted. I was too busy talking to family as loved ones held Zach for the first time. My sense of taste had the day off. My other senses have never been that powerful. But I'll never forget the taste of Breaded Chicken. I posted the recipe a couple of years ago. Throughout my whole pregnancy it was my biggest craving. Once I even defrosted chicken in the microwave to make it for lunch because the craving was that strong! It has always been his favorite. He can help bread the chicken now too!

He smelt like love. You don't know what that means until you become a loving parent. It's the first time love actually has a smell. It's what inspired my impulse to say "kisses from Mommy, because Mommy will always love you!" I wanted him to be able to show his love before he could say the words. When he was three months old, he started giving me kisses. I will never forget what those felt like. I still say that at bedtime every night. He says it with me with a big dimply smile!

I'm glad I paid attention to these things at the time. I'm glad I let my senses take in the entire experience. I'm glad that all I have to do is close my eyes to relive what it felt like as Zach came out.
That's the irony really. I didn't feel the start of labor. The ultrasound technician told me those squiggly lines going up and down were contractions.

It's the main reason I wanted to be a mother. I remember telling him that thing he's looking at is called a tree. Now he can read the word "tree" and wants to know what kind it is. We use senses to learn and remember. For some of us, one sense is strongest for learning and remembering. For me, that's my sense of touch. How things feel connect to my emotions. I am more likely to remember things based of the emotions that experience made me feel. It's what life is like with OCD, General Anxiety Disorder, and PMDD.

Now I will go kiss my angel on the cheek. And feel a sense of love so strong my chest actually hurts!

I have discovered something about myself recently: I'm a very literal person!





20 weeks 2 days pregnant

Saturday, March 21, 2015

A Jersey Breakfast

A few weeks ago a few of us Moms were talking while waiting for the kids to be dismissed at school. One of the Mom's is from Brooklyn and was talking about a popular breakfast here that she hadn't heard of until she moved here.

Taylor Ham, Egg and Cheese sandwich (bagel, English muffin, or roll).

Taylor Ham is a pork roll. Taylor is the brand. You can get it in packs of 4 or 8 slices. The 8 slices are thin. That's what I prefer. I use two on each sandwich. You make cuts in it, usually four, before popping in on the skillet. When it pops up, you flip it, continue until browned to your preference.

The rest of us Moms are life-long Jersey girls and know the Jersey breakfast well! That morning she had the Jersey breakfast on a bagel.

Bagels...............another Jersey treasure! When I was in college in South Carolina my roommate asked me to bring back Jersey bagels for her because they were the best she ever had. The BEST bagels and are in New York and New Jersey!

But back to the Jersey breakfast.

Ever since Josh fell I have been making the Jersey breakfast on weekends. I use the 100% Whole Wheat Thomas' English Muffins. I make the egg over easy for Josh and me and scrambled for Zach. Once everything is cooked and stacked, I put ours in the oven for the cheese to melt. The order is:

English Muffin Top
Egg
Cheese Square
Taylor Ham (2 thin slices)
English Muffin Bottom

Healthy? NOPE! Yummy? YES! We've decided to only do bagels for breakfast on weekends if the lowest temperature of the day is 40 or higher. That's because Josh was going to get bagels when he fell. After that, it became clear that if there might be ice, the Jersey breakfast is nice!

I got the recipe from Josh's Mom. She used to make it on Christmas morning when he was growing up. It's one of his favorites! It can be made with Canadian Bacon instead. But the dedicated Jersey girl in me HAS to make it with Taylor Ham!


Ironically, this picture is from NJ.com!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Luck

Is it luck?
Is it God's plan?

I do think some people are luckier then others. It's part of God's plan. In my experience, even when I feel very unlucky, God makes sure we're okay. Sometimes, it's too 'nick of time' for my comfort. But He always comes through. Maybe we are luckiest when we feel the most unlucky.

This year, I suspect, is a mix of both God and luck. I am lucky to be living in this town I grew up in. I am lucky to have the best kid ever. I am lucky to have Josh and my parents. They are an incredible support system. But God is definitely a part of it.

We'll never have another kid. Recently, I started asking myself "why did I want two in the first place?" I couldn't answer that. It's been a reflex to want two since I was four. But I can't answer the question "WHY?"

I've asked God "why?" before. I've asked Him "why?" after each miscarriage and each passing month of the two years we tried to have Zach. I asked Him "why?" every time since Zach turned 3 that I look at the budget spreadsheet. But God's plan for my life is unfolding.

I'm not getting a second child. But, for the first time, I'm at peace. Another child would mean we'd have to move. This town and the people in it provide comfort for me. One child means I get to stay here. The more I can't answer "why did I want two?" The more I only want Zach.

We are lucky in small ways each day. Perhaps you found a coin on the ground. Perhaps you get the last of an important item in the store. Perhaps you get a surprise coupon from a stranger that you can use.

I do that all of the time. If I get a coupon I won't use at the store, I give it to the cashier and tell them to use it on someone who could. One lucky woman behind me in line one day got that nice surprise. It was a Shop Rite bakery coupon and she was buying cookies. You never know when that extra $1 or $2 will make a difference for someone.

I'm one lucky Irish chick!

My Irish heritage blog post from 2011:

http://homewithmommy-fran.blogspot.com/2011/03/yes-were-mostly-irish.html

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Fun March Holidays

There are a lot of holidays we don't know about. I know of some of them from my teaching books. Do you know that March 1st was pig day? In the spirit of looking for something interesting and possibly silly I decided to explore these lesser known holidays.

In addition to being Women's History Month March is:

Month:
  • Music in Our Schools Month
  • National Craft Month
  • National Frozen Food Month
  • National Irish American Heritage Month- designated by Congress in 1995.
  • National Nutrition Month
  • National Peanut Month   
  • Red Cross Month
  • Social Workers Month
Week Celebrations:
  • 2nd Week National Bubble Week
  • 2nd Week Crochet Week
YEAH! This upcoming week is Crochet Week!!!


Pig Day (1st)

National Pig Day recognizes and gives thanks to domesticated pigs.  Big, pot-bellied pigs seen in zoos, are often the symbol of the day. Pigs are clever and intelligent animals. But, most people are unaware of this high level of intelligence. They can be taught to do tricks. Some people even keep them as pets. Today is a day to give pigs the respect that they deserve.
     
National Pig day is celebrated by zoos, too. Activities include Snort Offs, Pig Outs, and online Pig Chats.


National Anthem Day (3rd)

Many people think the Star Spangled Banner was written during the Revolutionary War. It was actually written during the war of 1812 (1812-1814).
     
In August 1814, the British army detained Dr. William Beanes as a prisoner of war. He was a friend of Francis Scott Key. On Sept. 13, 1814, Francis Scott Key and a U.S. negotiator boarded a British vessel where Beanes was being held. He negotiated his friends' release. But then, Francis Scott Key was detained that day along with the negotiator. They were held until after the attack on Fort McHenry, which guarded the harbor and city of Baltimore.       He watched the bombardment of the fort from the ship. The next morning, he was ecstatic to see that the American flag was still flying over Fort McHenry. This historic event inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner" the following day (September 14, 1814).  Peach Blossom Day (3rd) The attributes of peach blossoms include: pretty, delicate, dainty, and sweet smelling. These are all feminine traits. As a matter of fact, calling a young lady "peach blossom" is a term of endearment to some.        The roots of Peach Blossom Day also trace directly back to Japan. A Doll Festival is held in Japan every year on March 3rd. This is also when peach trees bloom in Japan. Simply said, it's an opportunity for girls to celebrate being girls.              Note: There is a Peach Blossom Festival in Hunan China on March 3rd. It coincides with the annual blossoms opening on peach trees in Hunan province.  


National Frozen Food Day (6th)

National Frozen Food Day celebrates all those yummy foods and snacks in your freezer.
           
Did you know? Frozen foods first hit store shelves in 1930 in Springfield, Ma. Who developed the process? ...... Clarence Birdseye.

Origin of "National Frozen Food Day":
Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 193, designated March 6, 1984, as ``Frozen Food Day'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation upon this occasion.       In Proclamation #5157, President Ronald Reagan said: "Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim March 6, 1984, as Frozen Food Day, and I call upon the American people to observe such day with appropriate ceremonies and activities." And, so this became a true National day of recognition and celebration.


Employee Appreciation Day (1st Friday)

Employee Appreciation Day honors employees everywhere. Celebrations today should be created and executed by your company. Recognitions vary widely, and may include a lunch, snack, cakes, or other munchies, and small recognition gifts.

According to David Nuualiitia "Employee Appreciation Day first arrived on calendars in 1995. One of Recognition Professionals International’s founding Board members, Bob Nelson, together with his publishing company, Workman Publishing, created Employee Appreciation Day as a way of focusing the attention of all employers, in all industries on employee recognition."
There are a lot of local and company specific celebrations for Employee Day and week. They are spread across the year.   National Salesperson Day (1st Friday) National Salesperson Day is established to recognize the value of the truly professional salesperson. This day also recognizes the hard work performed by professional sales people. Who is a salesperson:
  • Register clerks at the grocery store
  • Clerks at your convenience store
  • Door to door sales people
  • Car salesman
  • Life Insurance agents
  • Mortgage brokers and loan officers
  • Travelling salesman
  • Manufacturer's reps
  • The list goes on and on
National Salesperson's Day was founded by Maura Schreier-Fleming, President of Best@Selling, in March 2000. She is  an author, consultant, and speaker for salesperson training.   International Working Women's Day (8th) Note: There isn't a Stay At Home Mom (or Parent) Day. I'm offended!  International Women's Day is sponsored worldwide by the United Nations. However, the UN did not originate this special celebration. The roots of this celebration goes back to the late 1800's and early 1900s. It grew from women's socialist movements and early women's trade union groups.
The first International Women's Day was held March 19, 1911. Women socialists and trade unions held an earlier Women's Day on the last Sunday in February, 1908. The event grew from there, and has been celebrated annually since. The focus is upon women workers, and advancing women's rights in  the workforce, politics and society.
  Girl Scout Day (12th) Girl Scout Day recognizes and celebrates the Girls Scouts of the USA(GSUSA). This date celebrates the creation of the first Girl Scout group on March 12, 1912. Lady Olave Baden-Powell, founded Girl Guides. The wife of Lord Baden-Powell (who created the Boy Scouts), she was born on February 22 (1889).
On March 12, 1912 Juliette Gordon Low started the first Girl Scout group in Savannah Georgia with 18 girls. The Girls Scouts became a national organization, and was chartered by the U.S. Congress on March 16, 1950. Today, there are millions of girls involved with Girl Scouts.


Ear Muff Day (13th)

Ear Muff Day celebrates a warm invention...the ear muff! Ear muffs keep your ears warm, and protect you from ear infections and earaches resulting from icy cold wind and weather.

Big-eared Chester Greenwood is the father of the Earmuff. Greenwood patented the "Champion Ear Protector" on March 13, 1877. It later became known as "ear mufflers", and was eventually shortened to "earmuffs".


Popcorn Lover's Day (2nd Thursday)

This day was created on January 6, 2012, by Bob Matthews of Rochester, NY. It is Bob's favorite snack. He and his wife have it on most Thursdays, all year long. Bob is also an avid gardener and has grown popcorn and dried it for popping.


National Pi Day (14th)

National Pi Day celebrates Pi, a mathematical concept  and a number that never ends....at least no one has found the end yet. Often, we round it off to 3.14. If you are a mathematician, this is your day. For National Pi Day is a celebration of mathematics. And, more specifically.... it celebrates "Pi".

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a non-binding resolution (HRES 224),[5] recognizing March 14, 2009 as National Pi Day

Who say's Congresses of recent years didn't do anything! They created National Pi Day! Now it's time for that National Stay At Home Parent Day!


Ides of March (15th)

The Ides of March is the first day of the Roman New Year. It also marks the first day of spring in the Roman calendar.
     
On this day in history, Julius Caesar was warned by soothsayers to "beware of the Ides of March". Apparently, he did not heed the warning strongly enough as he was stabbed by Marcus Brutus on the Ides of March in 44 BC.


Absolutely Incredible Kids Day (15th)

Campfire USA created this day as a day to show kids they are loved and cared for. Among other things, they suggest you write a letter to your kid today.


Freedom Of Information Day (16th)

Freedom of Information Day celebrates and recognizes a valuable concept in American rights.
March 16th is the birth date of James Madison, the 4th president of the United States of America. James Madison is recognized as the "Father of the Constitution", and the chief author of the "Bill of Rights". Freedom of information and individual rights was very important to James Madison.


National Agriculture Day (25th but varies)

National Agriculture Day is a salute to American Agriculture and everyone who plays a role in it.
According to the Agricultural Day website, the purpose of National Agriculture Day is to "celebrate the abundance provided by agriculture".       Every year, producers, associations, universities and other groups recognize and celebrate the contributions of agriculture.       .       The date of this special day can vary. It is often, but not always on the first day of spring.

On February 29, 2012, Agriculture secretary Thomas J. Vilsack proclaimed March 8, 2012 to be National Agriculture Day. While tis proclamation stated a specific date and year, we believe that the Agricultural Secretary has annually proclaimed this date to be National Agriculture Day.
This day is organized and promoted by the Agriculture Council of America (ACA). This special day originated in 1973.

Near Miss Day

On March 23, 1989, an asteroid the size of a mountain, came within 500,000 miles of a collision with Earth. In interstellar terms, it was a near miss. Had it collided with the Earth, it would have left a devastating crater the size of Washington, D.C. It's affect on the planet would have been catastrophic. Since then, there have been other near misses.

 Near misses with large, potentially life threatening galactic objects happens on an infrequent basis.  It is believed a large asteroid collided with the earth and caused the extinction of dinosaurs. Scientists believe it is only a matter of time before another catastrophic collision with Earth.

  • 2003 SQ222 - Approximately 10 meters in diameter, came within 54,700 miles of earth on September 27, 2003.
  • Asteroid 2002 EM7 - Approximately, 70 meters long, this rock came within 288,000 miles in March, 2002.


  • National Mom And Pop Business Owner's Day (29th)

    National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day celebrates small business owners. These individuals spend countless hours nurturing and growing their young enterprises. The workload demands, and lack of a hired staff, often translates into long and late hours, and many missed family and personal events.       

    New businesses have always been a vital, yet not fully appreciated, part of the U.S. economy. On the retail side, they bring different and unique products to the marketplace. They provide stellar and personal service support. When you call, you are more likely to get a real, live person. And unlike big national chains, they know their products. They are outstanding performers in niche markets. In manufacturing, they create many new concepts and ideas, making them creators of new products.

     According to the son of the "mom and pop" this day was created for:
    " This holiday was created to honor the business that my parents started on 3/29/39 in Everett , MA —a hat shop called Ruth’s. It later developed into a woman’s specialty clothing store and moved to Medford , MA , increasing in size to 10,000 square feet with over $2 million dollars revenue until it closed in 1997."  
    Rick Segel, Poinciana, FL 34759


    National Doctor's Day (30th)

    National Doctor's Day was created to show appreciation to your doctors. Doctors perform vital diagnosis, treatment and care for yourself and your family. When you are well, your doctor keeps you well. When you are sick, there is no other person more important to you than your doctor.

    Doctors' Day observances date back to March 30, 1933. It was started by Eudora Brown Almond of Winder, Ga. The day marks the anniversary of the first use of general anesthesia in surgery. The first National Doctor's Day was celebrated in 1991.
    On March 30, 1958, the United States House of Representatives adopted a resolution commemorating Doctors' Day. In 1990, the congress and the senate approved legislation establishing National Doctors Day. The resolution designating March 30 as National Doctors' Day was signed by President George Bush.


    I got this information from the website below. There were a lot of other holidays mentioned but no origins were found so I left them off.

    http://holidayinsights.com/moreholidays/march.htm

    Friday, February 27, 2015

    Winter Stinks, C'mon Spring! (with a Josh Update)

    Josh has been back to work for two weeks. Yesterday, he had a follow-up appointment. He can drive again and walk with a cane. But if he doesn't need the cane, he doesn't have to use it! We are all relieved!

    I haven't posted in a while. It's writer's block. I've been trying to avoid another "thinking of spring in winter" post. But that's been one of the few things on my mind. It's one of the few things on the minds of most people living in cold and snowy areas. So I decided to say what we're thinking, "Winter stinks, c'mon spring!"

    A new thing I started this past summer was season CDs for my car. I've taken favorite songs that fit a seasonal theme or mention a month or holiday and put it on the CD for the matching season. I was still listening to Christmas music this morning. It matches since I still see Christmas wreaths.

    But the CD also has general winter songs like "Winter Wonderland" and Madonna's "Frozen". It includes "Let Her Go" since it mentions "you only miss the sun when it starts to snow". I included "Hall of Fame" because of Football Hall of Fame nominations and because the NFL playoffs are when those Hall of Famers made their records. For Valentine's Day I included classic love songs like "My Heart Will Go On" by Celine Dion and "I Will Always Love You" by Whitney Houston. That one has been hard to listen to with Bobbi Kristina's struggles!

    The second to last song on each CD includes a New Age song. The very last song is "Love For All Seasons" by Christina Aguilera. It's a nice mix. All of the "snow is wonderful" songs were hard to listen to these past two weeks. But it's a reminder that winter doesn't actually stink.

    It's the bone-chilling cold that stinks. Snow might be annoying but it also can be fun if it's not too cold. When it's bone-chilling cold you can't go outside to walk or play. When it's bone-chilling cold outside it's usually also cold inside. You can't get warm. THAT'S what stinks. Like most people, I hate looking out at all of the white from the snow. It's been too white for too long. But this time of year reminds me that snow isn't the real problem, it's the ice!

    Some days are in the teens or colder, some days are in the thirties or colder. It's the transition. March is usually in the 20s and 30s. Some days reflect that. Others are nothing but frozen! When it's in the 30s, the snow melts and there is hope we won't be seeing snow on Mother's Day. But at night the melted snow freezes leaving ice. Making us wonder if we were wrong and we will still be dodging ice on Father's Day. Reality check: it'll warm up throughout March. Even when it still feels cold outside there will be melting. It won't be that much longer until the melting doesn't freeze at night. Even in New England winter should be gone by Mother's Day.

    Tomorrow is decorating day and that means spring is arriving in my home and heart. Since I am home for the day, I have put the winter CD away and taken out the spring CD. Spring themes include flowers, ponds, butterflies, bees, babies, rain and beauty. I included "Roar" by Katy Perry because March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb.

    Friday, March 20th is the calendar first day of spring. It's possible there will be Daffodils and Pansies then. But it's still very cold. We won't really see the spring flowering we long for until early to mid April. But it's nice to walk around stores and see what is being featured for spring now. You don't have to buy it. But it gets you in the spirit of spring.

    The next time I drive somewhere I will be thinking about rain instead of snow. I will be thinking about butterflies, bees, and beauty. I will be surrounded by spring imagery. Outside there might be snow on the ground and bitter cold in the air. But inside I'll be thinking about how soon nature will be coming back to life.

    Winter might not actually stink but, C'MON SPRING!!!