Saturday, February 21, 2009

Birthday Party

Diva decided to have her 11th birthday party at the local ice skating rink.  After seven weeks of lessons, we have become quite expert, and are now both ready to progress to level 2 next session.  

We have mastered the two-foot glide, swizzles, and backward skating.  In my case, the backward skating not so much.  

I'm very proud of Diva, this year she asked all of her friends to bring a donation for the Manchester Animal Shelter instead of a present.  Today we took in $80, plus several bags of cat and dog food, wet wipes, dog brushes, canned food, and kitty litter to the shelter.  The folks at the shelter were great, treating Diva to a tour of the shelter and a personal thank you from the shelter assistant manager.  

After spending two hours on the ice, the girls had pizza and (what else) ice cream cake.  

Doesn't everyone put Warrior Cats Rule on their birthday cake?  

In case you aren't the parent of a tween, Warrior Cats are a series of books by Erin Hunter, and a particular favorite of Diva, who has all of them and has already pre-ordered the next two in the series.  

Ice Skating Party for 11 girls with pizza and soda = $165
Ice Cream Cake from Dairy Queen = $15
Mom not having to clean up the house, and not having sugared up kids in the house after cake = Priceless.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wanted: Hero

I succumbed to the flu bug and spent Monday at home, which gave me a couple of minutes to watch some of the Miracle on the Hudson coverage.  I was immediately struck by the humility shown by Captain Sullenberger.  Apparently, so were a lot of other people.  

Today I stumbled across this USNews blog entry titled:  What Sully Sullenberger can Teach CEO's.   It's well worth a quick read-through.  

One thing that struck me as missing in this entry - undoubtedly as a member of USAirways pilot's union, Sullenberger has over the past years been asked to give up some of his compensation to help the airline survive not one, but two trips through bankruptcy court.  And yet he didn't use this as an excuse to not continue to train, work, and behave as a professional.  

On the other hand, we have CEO's who decimate U.S. workforces, burn through their company's cash reserves, and make such poor risk management decisions that we the people must help their companies stay afloat - and yet they worry about a $500k salary cap - or even worse - their personal income taxes being raised.  

We need a hero - a real hero - who doesn't use drugs to enhance athletic ability, who doesn't think about me first and to h*12 with everyone else, who can find a win/win solution when none seems to exist.  

Thank you Captain Sullenberger - we need you more than you know.  

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Flu Season and Daytime TV

Yes, it's that time of year.  You know, when one kid at school gets sick, and then the rest of them take turns getting sick.  Finally, your number is up and its your kid who is sick.  

Until this year Diva has been the model of health, but she woke up yesterday with a mysterious fever, which just isn't going away.  Today was day 2 of home from school, and she was begging to go back to school.  Seems there isn't enough entertainment here at home.  She gets a bit clingy when she's ill, so I sat with her for a couple of hours this afternoon and we watched a few programs on TV.  I rarely watch TV, so I'd like to share a few observations:

~ the prime choice today was Travel Channel's "Extreme Retail Locations"  Did you know that there is a store that sells yodeling pickles?  And the world's largest underwear at a rate of 2000 pairs/year?  And all kinds of bacon themed items (like gummy bacon and bacon band-aids) for your vegetarian friends?  How did I live 40 something years without shopping here? 

~ Just when you think a program is safe to watch with the kids, they show the extreme Las Vegas store that sells books on learning to pole dance.  Remember Diva loves to dance - so guess what book she wants?  How does one explain pole dancing to a ten year old?  

~ This summer I'm heading for Sharon, PA.  Don't know exactly where it is, but they have the world's largest candy store, and that's enough for me.  While there, I'll explore the world's largest outlet store, because I'll need some bigger clothes after my visit to the candy store.

Any good shopping in your neighborhood?