Saturday, November 20, 2010

On Twilight (again)

I've recently read several Twilight reviews, where the series was defended pretty much solely because Bella and Edward abstain from pre-marital sex.

I've read the whole series. They were neither as good nor as bad as they're made out to be (the writing, that is), although I didn't find anything especially original about them. My only reason for reading them was to see for myself if the Bella-Edward relationship is really abusive, since that was the chief complaint I heard. I just want to make this clear: when someone pins you to a bed to stop you from seeing someone they don't approve of, you are being controlled, and it is a form of abuse. When someone sabotages your car to prevent your free movement around town, you are being controlled, and it is a form of abuse. It doesn't matter if it's 'for your own good'. Abusers nearly always have reasons for their actions, and 'for your own good' is a pretty popular one.

Abstinence is great, and I'm all for encouraging role-models who promote a responsible lifestyle; but no relationship is worth the price if the cost is being controlled, and taking insane, dangerous risks to sneak around the limitations you're under.

Adventures in Dorm Cooking

Unlike Kate (and, I'm assuming, the majority of on-campus college students), I have a kitchen. A tiny one with just a range top, fridge and sink, but a kitchen nonetheless. My roommates and I have augmented this with a slow-cooker, hand-mixer, three French presses (we take our coffee seriously), and last but not least, a convection oven given to a roommate by a lady at her synagogue. Lately I've committed myself to getting my grocery spending under control, by both planning menus and making as much as I can from scratch. Having a slow-cooker is a big help in this: I can make one meat-based meal (whole chicken, roast, chicken parm, whatever) at the beginning of the week, and I'll get anywhere from 4-6 meals out of it. I also eat a lot of eggs and rice dishes. My favorite made-it-myself money-saver is butter:

 This isn't that much of a money saver for me; I figure I break even (unless stores run out of my brand of butter, and then it's way cheaper to make), but it tastes so much better than store bought, so it's worth the effort. It's also nice to not be dependent on stores for my butter: for a couple weeks at the beginning of the month, we couldn't find our cheap butter anywhere. We joked that the cows must have gone on strike. Later we learned the cows had become dehydrated, and really had gone on strike. It turns out making butter is one of the simplest things you can do in your kitchen: two cups whipping cream (highest fat content you can find) at room temperature, mix in a bowl with a stand-mixer (10-15 minutes) or hand-mixer (forever30-45 minutes); when the butter milk separates, drain it out and give the butter a stir to make sure there isn't any milk still inside; rinse it under slowly running cool water, and place in a container. It makes a little more than a cup of butter, plus buttermilk you can bake with. 

You can mix a half-teaspoon of salt in if you want, or try a variety of flavored-butter recipes. Last week one of my roommates put garlic and basil in hers, and it was wonderful. This week I'm going to use this recipe to make honey-cinnamon butter. It makes about a week's worth, which is about how long I was told it will last before going bad. 

My latest accomplishment (from tonight, and the real potluck recipe):

Home made pizza: I made both the dough and the sauce myself. By the way, the sauce isn't watery as it appears in the picture, you just need to stir it occasionally. I made this so I would have lunch for the week, but it would be great for a party where you want mini-pizzas for everyone. Making them would be especially fun for a kid's party, too.

Sauce recipe:

1 can tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon onion powder (we don't have onion powder, so I used a quarter of a small onion, chopped finely)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder (will not make the sauce spicy, just gives it a little zing)
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon basil

I like to warm the sauce a little in a pot, and then add all the ingredients at once. Let it simmer for a while (there's not really a science to it, just until the kitchen smells like pizza).

The dough recipe I found online, but I lost the link, so if you recognize it please let me know:

2.25 teaspoons yeast
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
1.5 cups warm water

1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 1/3 cups flour

Olive oil to spread on the oven pan.

Mix the yeast, brown sugar, and warm water in a bowl; let sit for 10 minutes. Mix in the salt and olive oil, and then mix in 2.5 cups of flour. Knead in the remaining flour, cover with a towel, and let sit for one hour. For the rolling-out process, make sure everything is well-floured! I would recommend rolling the dough on wax paper, but since we don't have any, I rolled it out on a cutting board. I used a 7-inch bowl to cut out circles (only the last two turned out circular, because that's how long it took me to really flour the board). After removing the excess dough, I flipped the cutting board over the oven pan, because the dough isn't stiff enough to be scraped up with a spatula. I can't remember if spreading olive oil on the oven pan, was required in the recipe, but I did it anyway (but only once, with the first pizza; none of the others stuck after that). Bake for 15-20 minutes (it only took 15 for mine) without toppings, at 425 Fahrenheit (220 C). After you remove it, put all your toppings on and bake until the cheese is gooey.

You're going to make a huge mess. Accept this before you even begin:

This recipe made seven mini-pizzas for me, although I think I could have made several more if I had rolled the dough out more (but rolling dough is my least favorite part). I ate one pizza tonight, put three crusts in the fridge, and froze the other three (I'll let you know how well they freeze). As you can see, your pizzas aren't going to look like restaurant made ones, but they'll be crunchy and delicious!

Between this and the roast I'm making Monday, I'll have leftovers for long after Thanksgiving! Speaking of Thanksgiving, my roommates and I are hosting a Thanksgiving potluck for several (around 20) of the other American graduate students, so I hope to have another post for the next Saturday potluck as well!

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Between illness in Kate's and Ginny's family, and deaths in mine, we've rather let the blog go ignored. However, Kate mentioned this past week that she has two posts she wants me to edit before she posts them, and I'm planning to post my latest travel adventures, so hopefully we can pick up and get moving again.

In parting, I'll leave you with this link: How to get married.

Friday, September 17, 2010


The spread.
Dessert: Kosher chocolate mousse made by a roommate
My roommates and I had a potluck Wednesday, and invited a bunch of students from our language classes. I think we invited between twenty and twenty-five people, and about twelve turned up. We were a little relieved that only half the invitees came, because it was pretty crowded with just the seventeen of us! My contribution to dinner was a crockpot chicken:

-one whole chicken
-some kind of spice from the market*
-two onions
-three potatoes
-half a liter of sprite

Since I don't like wine (and can't find bouillon flavoring anywhere), I used sprite as the liquid for my chicken. One of the onions I cubed and smeared with the chicken seasoning, and then put inside the chicken. The other one, with the potatoes, I cubed at arranged around the chicken in the sprite. It cooked on high for four hours, and was falling off the bones while I carved it.

Everyone had a great time, and aside from when I accidentally un-Koshered someone's pot lid, everything went well. We're definitely going to do this again, and I'm hoping to do a beignets-and-coffee day later in the semester.

*I asked the counter guy at the spice store what was good for chicken, and he waved something under my nose. It smelled good, so I bought it.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


Hello, world, and many happy greetings from Israel. Learning Hebrew is exhausting, especially when you spend 25 hours a week in class. I'm very happy to say I'm enjoying Israel very much, despite the tone set by my departure from America. First, the travel agency I booked my flight with (through the university, a group flight with other students) was so late in mailing out our travel packets that I never actually got mine, and had to meet a representative from the agency at the airport to get my necessary travel vouchers. The representative waited until the very last minute before we were required to check our baggage to show up, and then was surprised to learn I needed anything from her, and seemed confused as to why I should want the documents she had promised me both in e-mail and over the phone. Then take-off was delayed by about an hour while security did who-knows-what. And then, to top it all off, when we arrived in Israel, the school officials had us fill out the paperwork they had already mailed or e-mailed to us, which I had already taken the time to mail/fax back to them. Nearly everything was chaotic and disorganized in some way. However, once I settled into my dorm (and threw away my big suitcase, which gave in to old-age on the flight over and had to be literally dragged across the ground to my dorm), I started to feel slightly calmer.

That disappeared as soon as ulpan (Hebrew classes) started the next day. We are three-quarters of the way through ulpan, and three-quarters of the way through our text book, and somewhere around the second week I started looking for a tutor. This is where my major (and pretty much only) problem with Israel arises: people seem either annoyed or baffled when you ask for help. When I asked my teacher if the university had tutoring for students, she looked at my like I'd sprouted another head, but did take me up to the language office to get the information. It turned out their tutoring is just another class you go to after ulpan, though, so one of our wonderful activities coordinators found an Israeli student willing to tutor me one-on-one. In short, my life since August 3 has been one of constant studying, with a few exceptions: the coordinators took us on a 'practical' tour of Jerusalem, and then later to the שוק (outdoor market, where we do most of our grocery shopping); and last week they took us on a tour of the Old City, where I got to visit the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Right now we're on vacation for Rosh Hashana (Jewish New Year), which our teachers celebrated by giving us a take-home exam, with plenty of homework on the side. One of my classmates invited me to her home for dinner tonight: she's married to an Israeli and they have a home off-campus.

More to come, but for now שלום ושנה טובה!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

All my bags are packed...

and I'm ready to go already gone. I spent the past week in South Carolina, first for a dear friend's wedding, and then just to hang out with people I hadn't seen in years. It was a great week, and exactly the kind of relaxation I needed before this big trip. I'm sitting in Newark airport in New Jersey now, and my flight out to Israel isn't until 2:15 pm (it's 1:16 am now). I wish I could have had more time to visit with more people, but that's the way things go.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Back soon

Off to Mississippi to see our new niece, and pack Kate out of her dorm. We'll be back Friday, when Kate promises she'll start blogging again.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Then do it already

I know a couple of women on Facebook, who regularly post status updates about how awful their jobs are, how their lives are so dull, and so on and so forth. This has been going on for months, and I keep wondering if it can really be that bad, because if it were, surely they would have made some changes in their lives by now? Sadly, many people are content to sit around and wait for things to happen to them, rather than going out and making things happen.

It's kind of a foreign concept to me. The little city I live in is lovely: it has all the charm of a small town, but plenty of the perks of a city (like 24 hour cafes). However, it isn't the place I want to spend the rest of my life, so I went and found someplace else to go.

Something we've discussed often here, or you might say is the whole reason for this blog, is making the most of your single years. We're big supporters of dreaming big (why dream any other way?). However, it isn't enough to say "I'm going to climb Mt. Everest!" You can spend your whole life wanting to climb Mt. Everest, just like my friends have spent years waiting for their lives and jobs to suddenly get better, but it won't get you any closer to your goals. The goal this sort of behavior is most prevalent with is earning a college degree. Nowadays you can spend seven or eight years in college without getting a degree, and in the cases I see most often, it's because student don't sit down with a curriculum sheet to review what classes they need, what they've already taken, and what classes are going to be available in future semesters.

It only took me three years to get a college degree, because I knew what I wanted: a college degree, and the 'college experience'. I took fifteen hours worth of CLEP tests (equivalent of five classes); took eighteen hours (six classes) two semesters in a row; and took two classes my second summer (and I still kick myself for not taking classes my first summer).

Let's say you do have a dream of climbing Mt. Everest. What would your to-do list look like? Train. Start setting aside money (it costs anywhere from $25 to $60 grand). Train. Learn to mountaineer. Train some more. It may take you a decade or so to do it, depending on when you get started and how dedicated you are to saving money, but it is achievable.

Most people have dreams that aren't quite as grand as that: maybe travel to a dream destination, own your own home, be debt free. These are all attainable, and if you know where to look there are plenty of people willing to tell you how they accomplished the exact same goals.

The biggest first step is to simply stop thinking about what you're going to do some day, and start thinking about what you can do right now. Right now, I can find out whether I need a visa to visit X country. I can find out when the high- and low-seasons are, and how much hotel prices fluctuate, how much plane tickets are. If traveling independently seems too intimidating for you, then all you really need to do is save your money, because there are plenty of travel agencies willing to do the leg work for you.

The most important thing to remember is that everything is so much simpler than people imagine it to be.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

May the Fourth be with you

We (Ginny and I) are big fans, and are happy to be participating in International Star Wars Day. I will happily be bombarding my Facebook friends with Star Wars quotes via my status updates, and generally encouraging people to get their geekitude on. If you've already seen the movies, it's time to start on the books (known as the Expanded Universe). The EU ranges from some of the best to some of the worst books I've ever read, but the caliber of the good authors keeps me coming back.

"They came for Han and Leia in the quietest hour of the night, rushing into their bedchamber and leveling blasters before the two of them could stagger out of bed. Han stared into the bright light affixed to the rifles. 'What is the meaning of this?' he asked. [...] The leader of the intruders, only a silhouette behind the lights, answered, 'Han Solo, Leia Organa Solo, you are charged with falsification of iidentification, smuggling, entering Aphran space on flase pretenses, and crimes against the state.'
'Is that all?' Han offered them a dismissive wave. 'That's only a couple of hours worth of crimes.'"
Jag: Would you be offended by a personal question?
Kip: That seems unlikely, go ahead.
Jag: Why is Jaina Solo so mad at you?
An irrational flicker of irritation shimmered through the Jedi Master. "Oh, that. It's a long story with a number of sordid chapters. Why don't you ask her yourself?"
"Two reasons. First, I don't wish to intrude upon personal matters. Second, I suspect that you did resent that question," observed Jag, "and I suspect that sending me to Jaina is your way of ensuring that I'm suitably punished for my presumption."
"Mara Jade!" Luke called. "What did I do to deserve the honor of your presence?"
"You don't deserve it, Skywalker," Mara said, "but I came anyway."
"Every living thing must continue to learn until it dies. Those who cease to learn, die that much sooner." Luke Skywalker.
"Lando got back from Coruscant alive, so being Calrissian he's having a party for family and friends. And friends of friends, and anyone who looks interesting." -Jag Fel
"I'll need communications access to Talon Karrde, Danni's device, a starfighter squadron, maybe a Jedi or two, and a lot of brandy. I can't stress the brandy part enough." Lando
"What's your name, little fellow?" the shop owner asked.
"Pray me you are not one of the gods," Rapuung muttered. "If you are, death will be tedious."
"It has to do with this bizarre concept called democracy..." -Nom Anor
"Despite your adventures, I fear you have insufficient experience of depravity." -Vergere

Friday, April 30, 2010

Not what was advertised

"19 Things You Should Never Say to a Single Person" turns out to be more like nineteen things you should never say to someone who has just been dumped. Out of the handful that did seem to be aimed at true singles, only a few of them seemed to fit the 'never say that to me' level of obnoxiousness the article seemed to be going for:

-So, why are you single? Well, there are a multitude of reasons, most of which are too long and detailed to get into in a making-small-talk conversation. Not that it matters, you don't actually care about why I'm single, you're just being nosy.

-Wow, I wish I was single and in your shoes! Why? Aren't you happy in your relationship?

-Some guy is going to come along and ruin your career/life plans. This one just confuses me. If you give up something you've been planning to do for a relationship, presumably you would only do it for an awesome guy. Just because you want to do something now doesn't mean you'll always want to do it.

-But you're so pretty! Why don't you have a boyfriend? Because looks aren't everything?

I've noticed a distinct lack of sites and articles out there for people who want to be happy single. Everything I've found so far is about how to kick things up a notch in the dating world or how to move your casual relationship to a more serious one (but not marriage, because marriage is rushing things for some reason). I do have a book I'm planning on reviewing here, called 'Flying Solo.' It's a travel book recommending places for single women to visit, so we'll see how that goes.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Hey look, fans! Hi, fans.

I just arrived home from visiting friends in Mississippi, the Land With No Internet I mentioned in a previous post. Since Kate was hanging out with us most of the time, it meant two out of your three authors were unable to keep up with the blog. Still, a good time was had by all, and I was pleased to look at our fan-box and see some new faces.

Have you ever had that vague feeling in the back of your head, that you're forgetting to do something? I've been walking around with that feeling for days, except in my case I have so many things to do (visas, plane tickets, packing, CASA, etc) that trying to pin-point any one thing is slightly nerve wracking. This is why I find comfort in making lists and spreadsheets, and they shall see me through this trying time.

In other news, brought to us by the Headmistress, it seems American women spend an average of 12 thousand dollars on beauty care/maintenance. Put down the make-up ladies, step away from the Botox, and learn to do your own nails. Yeegads.

Anyhow, enough about me. If you recently found/fanned Blissfully Single, leave a comment please, and introduce yourself!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Our thoughts and prayers...

...go out to the Gulf Coast families of the workers who did not make it off the oil rig after the explosion. Now that it has sunk into the Gulf, authorities have given up any hope that they could have survived.

Noms for groups and singles alike.

The Common Room blog is participating in a recipe share with three other blogs, and they're all very interested in what recipes their readers use to feed large numbers of people. Generally speaking, I am the least of the cooks in my family (I didn't really start cooking real meals until I was at least 18), but I do cook well, and have a few favorites I go to when we're feeding a lot of people, the main one being jambalaya:

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
olive oil for browning the chicken
1 package sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 small bell pepper, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon parsley flakes
1 fifteen oz can diced tomatoes
1 chicken boullion cube
1 cup water
1/2 cup rice

My jambalaya usually doesn't include celery or parsley, the first because I don't really care for it, the latter because I don't think it makes a difference.

First: chop all your veggies, put them in a bowl and set aside.

Second: Cut up all the chicken in to bite size pieces. My recipe says to season with creole seasoning at this point, however I have always thought the bell peppers add enough natural spice, so I just lightly salt/pepper the chicken. Put it in your pot to brown in the olive oil.

Third: While the chicken is browning, cut up the sausage into quarter or half inch slices, and add it to the chicken.

Fourth: Once the chicken is brown, add the veggies, mix well and saute for about 10 minutes.

Fifth: Add the tomatoes, parsley, boullion cube, and water. Let cook over medium heat for about ten minutes.

Sixth: Add the rice, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low/low-med, cover and cook for 20 minutes, stirring at least once during this time.

You may need to add a little water when you start the rice, if there isn't enough water for the rice to be submerged in. By the time the rice is done, the liquids should be mostly gone. As is, this recipe will feed about 6 or 7 people without leaving leftovers. You can easily expand it to fit your family's size by adding to the main ingredients (chicken, sausage, rice).

Why is this a good recipes for singles? Because a single woman living alone can live off it for about a week, without having to do too much other cooking, as I discovered in the wake of Hurricane Rita.

Check out the other recipes being shared at the Common Room!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Exciting news!

I am please to announce that I have been accepted to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's graduate school, Rothberg International! I will be moving to Jerusalem at the end of July, after a friend's wedding. Words can't describe how excited I am, to be moving somewhere new, and to study a new language in its home country (I'll be memorizing the Hebrew alphabet this summer, in preparation for the language training I start in August.) This is all doubly exciting for me because this is my second attempt at visiting Israel: I was supposed to study abroad there for a week January of 2009, but the plans fell through (and the organizer wasn't able to fully explain why). Now I'll be living there, with Egypt and Petra at my fingertips! 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Guidebook...

...on how not to live your life. I've been watching Friends reruns, and while I certainly enjoy the show, I don't think the producers could have tried harder to create a cast of characters who make one wrong decision after another in an attempt to make themselves as unhappy as possible, even if they planned it that way.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Back in the 21st Century (a weekend in pictures)




Later on:


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Well, so much for that

In the midst of my 'one post a day' commitment (which I have already failed to live up to), I'm taking a trip to Podunk, MS, otherwise known as the Land Without Internet. I hope y'all have a great weekend. I know I certainly will, since Kate and I will be getting together to shoot guns, eat brisket over a fire, and study Dante's Inferno.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Kate and I are happy to introduce our new writer, Ginny. Ginny is Kate's older sister, attending graduate school in North Carolina. We look forward to having her write with us, and are sure she has a lot to offer.

With three of us writing, hopefully we'll have content on a regular basis. I'm trying to commit myself to at least one post a day (and this introduction doesn't count for today).

Monday, April 5, 2010

'For never was a story of more woe...

...than this of Juliet and her Romeo.'

I was led to this article by another blog; it was published a couple months ago, but I just noticed it within the last couple of weeks. I have to wonder if the author, Andrew Trees, and I read the same play.

I think the article is a good example of someone missing the point-but still being spot on. His basic argument is that we have been misled by Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet; that by holding up their romance as the ideal, we've encouraged people to engage in hormone-driven romantic whirlwinds that can't and don't last. I guess no one pointed out to him that Romeo and Juliet is not a romance: it's one of Shakespeare's tragedies. Shakespeare never intended for those idiot children (and they truly are children, only between 13 and 17 years old) to be held up as the pinnacle of romance. It's a story about people making one wrong decision after another, after another, drawn out to it's logical conclusion: death and devastation for everyone concerned.

That being said, I do think people have let this version of love gain too much ground in our culture. Look at Romeo: he's head over heels in love with some girl who he can't be with, he'll never love again, how can he possibly go on, what will he do with himse-wait! Who's that girl over there? Why, it's his real true love! She's opened his eyes to how wrong he was about whats-her-name, this is who he's supposed to be with. And despite the fact that they have no way to support themselves, and absolutely none of their families' authority figures will bless this union, they elope and expect everything to be perfect. I wonder what they were planning to do when Juliet got pregnant?

I can understand why people today have a hard time coming to grips with the story's end. Today, if your family doesn't support your choice in a spouse, you can elope, wait tables or work nights to put yourselves through college, and you generally don't have to worry about being killed by the in-laws. In short, you have options. Not so in Shakespeare's world*.

It still doesn't mean the relationship will last. I once knew a man (somewhere in his 30s) who eloped with his girlfriend of one month in Vegas. Never met the wife, but sure heard a lot about how much they fought, how she didn't respect him, etc, etc.

I also knew a girl who reminded me of Romeo in a certain way. It was like she had a checklist in her head for men: same religion? check; same politics? check; has a plan for the future? check; and there were a few other less important things on the list, but once the major three had been met, it was basically a race to plan the wedding, plan the family, where they would live, careers, and on and on and on, until...something happened. Without fail, it would turn out that the guy was not as serious about the relationship as she was, or not ready to commit, or was a jerk, and she would be back at square one, except now she would be hurt, but that was ok, because there was always another guy around the corner. As far as I can tell she's grown out of this. I think the change mostly came about when she realized she needed to learn how to live independently before she started planning a life with another person.

Hmmmm. I'm not sure I really had a plan for this post, I just started rambling. I guess my point is I basically agree with Mr. Trees, except I think he needs to take some literature classes. Most people do, though (and history). Just about anything you could ever need or want to know about human nature is in the Shakespeare canon.

*But people don't really know much about Shakespeare's world, so they don't understand why it could never work (see: Taylor Swift's 'Love Story').

Saturday, April 3, 2010

I have not yet begun to procrastinate!

Saw that on a button once; I want it for a shirt. Anyway, a story about Ireland.

The thing to remember about Ireland is it's a really small country. If you're doing a tour, you'll likely run into the same tourists in multiple cities. This happened to us a lot, and this story is about a girl we met at a hostel we stayed at in Cork, who we had passed in the previous city.

She's about our age, either a recent graduate or about to graduate. Somehow it came up in conversation that her ex-boyfriend had proposed to her right before she left for Ireland. They had dated for three years, and as I understood it, she broke up with him because she wanted to see the world before she settled down. So she set out to see the world...on his dime. See, before she left (but after not accepting his proposal) she let him pay for her trip to Ireland. Also, the boyfriend is a professor at her college (but not one of her professors).

So many things in that conversation bothered me. Why invest three years of your life in a relationship you didn't see go anywhere? Why assume you had to be unattached to see the world? And, of course, I feel terribly sorry for the boyfriend. I don't know how many people are aware of this (least of all the girl), but many people pursuing doctorates wait to get married until after they've finished the whole process and are gainfully employed. At least three professors in my department at college were between my parents' and grandparents' age, but had children that were either not yet old enough for school, or in elementary school. Down here in the deep south, waiting until your late-20s to start a family puts you in 'withering on the vine' territory; waiting until your 40s or 50s...I don't think we even have a metaphor for that.

So from my point of view, this guy spent three years thinking he was finally going to settle down, only to be shot down (by a girl who described him as her 'best friend'). It seems cruel, and something that could have been avoided if popular culture had a more goal-oriented dating scene, or at least some sort of accepted guideline.

Note: I originally started working on this October of last year. How's that for procrastination?

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

In other news

I've mentioned before the importance of volunteering and charity, so I just wanted to mention that April is National Child Abuse Prevention month. CASA is having an agency-wide blue ribbon campaign fundraiser. If a business in your area isn't participating, consider donating to National CASA.


As you can see, we've added a few things to the site. Readers can click on the pages under the headers to learn more about the writers, what we believe, things we participate in. Also, on the sidebar we've started adding advertisements. We're signed up to for the Amazon Associates program, so if you click on an Amazon link we post and buy something (anything, it doesn't have to be something we mention), we'll get a small commission from it, so if you regularly shop at Amazon please consider clicking on one of those links first, our travel funds will greatly appreciate it. :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Please bear with us.... we edit the blog and its template. Some of this I need Kate's help with (I don't know how to get rid of the empty column), and she is very busy with school and her performance tomorrow (she's singing for a charity fundraiser).

Check out our new pages under the header, let us know what you think! And I promise, posting will resume soon!