31 July 2015

Microsoft Security is Not Really Calling to Help You

Got another call from the scammers in India, trying to get me to install remote access software on my computer.

I decided to play along. About 15 minutes in, after trying to connect to the remote server to access my machine (using a fake 12 digit access code I gave him), the delightful Indian gentleman I was talking to got quite cross.

He told me that I was a female dog, and that he would come to my house and do terrible things to my cat using a duck. (At least, that's what I *think* he meant...)

If you have elderly relatives - PLEASE tell them to hangup on anyone they don't know if they start talking about computers.

This call originated from Quebec - but of course they can come from anywhere. I wonder how lucrative this scam actually is? Idiots.

--posted by a friend on facebook.  Used with permission.

28 July 2015

Teaching as Sport

Well, the back-to-school specials are already happening here.  Public school begins mid-August in our state.  Yippee?

Donald Trump is God's Trumpet to the American People

The Holy Sprit said so!  He wants a twice-divorced, ruthless, crude and unfeeling businesman, who allows his business ventures to crumble while protecting his own assets, to become President of the United States.  So you'd better vote for him.

REALLY, people? This is what passes for prophecy? Times like this, I'm so grateful that we had people like Martin Luther who taught us to read the Scriptures for ourselves, for our English translation of the Bible, and for the Holy Spirit (who surely must have a few interesting words to say about this crap to those who will listen).

Ok, thanks for listening.

27 July 2015

Bad Lunches = Child Abuse

Some guy is given permission by school staff to snoop around the cafeteria and rummage through kids' lunches.   He practically squashes some little girl as he tosses her baggie on the table in disgust and proclaims it to be "unacceptable."  The principal is about two feet away and apologizes... not to the kid, but to the weirdo scrounging around in the lunches.  Well, he tells the man, the instructions he's been given are that if the parents pack a lunch, that's what the kid is eating.

Wow.

So.  "Bad" lunches are child abuse now.  Do these people even know what child abuse is?  It's not a packet of chips and some Skittles, I assure you.

25 July 2015

Fix Your Grammar.



I'm posting this so I can literally show it to my homeschoolers on Monday and discuss the differences between your/ you're and they're/ there/ their.  :)

24 July 2015

Noah's Voyage

The levelled Noah's Voyage reader is about what you'd expect.

In terms of the writing, I found the second half of the story to be more clear and detailed than the first part.  God frankly comes off as a bit of a jerk in the beginning, wanting to kill everyone in the whole world because some guy got mugged or something.  What a psycho. 

I think if they're going to embellish things and add personal "I love yous" from God to Noah, they can't say they didn't have any room to do a bit more explaining about that whole wiping everyone out thing.  At least give some sort of context to the kids, particularly as often they'll be reading about this mass extermination and global destruction event right before bed and all.

But no.  They show this guy getting mugged, mention that people were a little evil (like they aren't now?) and you just know that the guy who is doing the mugging and the guy getting mugged?  Are sleeping with the fishes.  The end.

And the two of every kind of animal thing.  That drives me nuts.  In fairness, though, just about every Noah's Ark story does that.

I wish I could find out if this story were written by a committee because the book seems to change personality and tone midway through.  I'm serious.  The second half is pretty good, it really is. 

I do have to say that the illustrations by David Miles, while they can't redeem the book, make me want to see what other authors he's worked with.  For example, take a good look at the butterflies on this cover photo.  Cute, aren't they?  I think many of the pictures have some sort of hidden joke or something to make you think of the sheer size and scope of the project that was the ark. 

I'd give the book three out of five stars overall; good but not great.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”





19 July 2015

"Cowards Shoot and Kill People."


"We are often unable to share most of the interviews we do because of time constrictions. That was the case Monday night when News 4 interviewed Ward 22 Alderman Jeffrey Boyd after his nephew, 23 year old Rashad Farmer, was killed by gunfire. The sound bites we used that night from Boyd were compelling. But, after one of our producers, Steve Perron, encouraged me to watch the whole interview, I felt compelled to edit more of what he had to say and post it here on Facebook. It's raw, it's emotional, and it's how so many victims friends and family must feel after the senseless murders we report on too often are committed. I often say I can't imagine how I'd feel if that were my loved one gunned down for no apparent reason. Jeffrey Boyd gives me and may give you a hint of what it would really feel like."  Steve Savard, KMOV


We are often unable to share most of the interviews we do because of time constrictions. That was the case Monday night when News 4 interviewed Ward 22 Alderman Jeffrey Boyd after his nephew, 23 year old Rashad Farmer, was killed by gunfire. The sound bites we used that night from Boyd were compelling. But, after one of our producers, Steve Perron, encouraged me to watch the whole interview, I felt compelled to edit more of what he had to say and post it here on Facebook. It's raw, it's emotional, and it's how so many victims friends and family must feel after the senseless murders we report on too often are committed. I often say I can't imagine how I'd feel if that were my loved one gunned down for no apparent reason. Jeffrey Boyd gives me and may give you a hint of what it would really feel like.
Posted by Steve Savard KMOV on Thursday, July 16, 2015


17 July 2015

HICKIES Product Review

Goofball photobombed while I was taking this picture and then insisted it go on the blog.  So here it is.
I just bought them and thought you'd want to hear how we like them.  HICKIES are stretchy little plastic tabs you pop through your shoelace holes instead of laces.  And they button.  They're about $15 for a set of 14 that will definitely cover one pair of shoes, but if you have small people who have fewer shoelace holes, a set will cover three shoes instead of two.

Woodjie finds getting the shoes with HICKIES on a bit harder than his other pair with the elastic laces built-in, but far easier than the whole process of learning to tie shoes.  If you're interested, right now it's cheaper to buy from the HICKIES website than directly from Amazon, because although they charge the same price at first blush, shipping is free with a $30 or more order (I bought the copper pair at $17.99 and a pair at $14.99) and you get a free box when you order two pairs.

15 July 2015

#PrimeDay Sucks.

SO disappointing.  Bleh.  I kept searching all sorts of random things I might want, thinking there were hidden bargains somewhere.  No such luck.  And I'm not the only one disappointed.  Here are some disgruntled tweets about PrimeDay:











14 July 2015

Death Wish Bunny

We frequently encounter a cute little rabbit in our front yard.  He'll let you get so close, you can almost touch him.  He'll just continue munching grass happily or moseying about as you talk to him.  Even the little children can squeal right near him.  Something is wrong with him that he is not scared of people at all. 

Woodjie's doing way better with the fireflies, and I took these pictures last night on our outing. 


04 July 2015

Fireflies!

Ok, just look at this picture of Woodjie.  Just look at it.  Have you ever seen a more worried, pitiful face?  I dragged the kid outside to look at fireflies, but as we were getting ready to go, D made the mistake of telling him they're really made of fire. 

You never know when the kid will take playful teasing too seriously.  So he came inside to learn about how fireflies are nice, and hopefully next trip outside won't be so scary.

Rose, on the other hand, never really believed Daddy's story anyway.  Off she went to try to capture the fireflies with her brothers.

Believe Storybook: Think, Act, Be Like Jesus

When the box arrived, I thought it was my new set of three-pound arm weights I ordered just the day before.  My, Amazon's fast!

Nope.  It was the Believe Storybook by Randy Frazee.  I was delightfully surprised by the book's heaviness,  the emotionally kinetic pictures and the super-glossy pages.  It's a keepsake.  The pictures by Steve Adams look very much like you're holding a painting.   You'll enjoy just looking at the pictures and talking about them with your child. 

Frazee's writing is pretty detailed throughout the 256 pages.  This is something I originally ordered for Woodjie, thinking that it wouldn't be too hard for him to read. But it's far more involved and detailed than he's ready for.  So it's for Rose.  The guidelines for this book indicate that it's for 4 to 8 -year-olds, but I'd recommend the book as more suitable for ages 6 to 10. 

The writing is more from the emotional "how to follow God" mindset than a retelling of Biblical events, although it does do that (not chronologically).  The only criticism I have of the book is that the cover does not do the inside justice.  The illustrations inside are of a far higher quality and detail.  (I have been unpleasantly surprised by the opposite happening more frequently than not, haven't you?)

It's divided into chapters, so it makes for good bedtime reading at any age.  We just use a Post-It note as a bookmark so it won't fall out by the time we're ready to read the following night.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


01 July 2015

#Benefitsstreet


So now I'm totally sucked into this show about life in exotic Birmingham, England.  If you ever wanted to see how people have it in the wealthy countries, you should watch Benefits Street.  English people receive free housing, free education, and they even?  Have free medical care.  I know, right?  It's crazy. 

So anyway.  These English people also have cute washing machines in their kitchens and lovely wallpaper.  And leather couches!  And they live in these dapper little row houses.  I mean, they're made of real brick and look like (aside from the partying in the street and stuff) places you'd actually want to live.  Well, except for the apartment of the bumbling but loveable "Fungi."  He has no water or electricity, and his place is falling apart on the inside.

White Dee seems to be the person who runs the whole area, and the main character.  She's like some maternal gangster type Don everyone comes to when they need a favour.  She has to be one of the most complex and interesting characters I've seen on a reality show in some time.  Parenting is a different game when your children live in the 'hood.  Although.  This is a mostly white 'hood where everyone has a charming accent and eats strange foods and drinks tea.  Can you imagine someone drinking tea in the 'hood?  Ok, there's something new.  I told you it was exotic.

On the whole, I'd recommend the show but there will be times where you want to throw stuff at the screen.  How is this economy even stable?  I'm asking seriously.





Star Trek Roller Skating!

Woodjie LOVES the audience.  I made these little outfits for the children and they danced to the Star Trek: Next Generation theme...