Kidizoom Camera


The vtech Kidizoom Camera that is (apparently) the newest rage among four-five years old in my family.

Of all the things I love to do shopping is not one of them. I say this after enduring a tragic four hour shopping spree in search of a “Kidizoon”  (vtech no less) camera which is for the ages 3-8 and costs 35.00 to 40.00 dollars depending on where you find one.  It has built-in games, photo editing software, a 4x digital zoom!, and “fun photo effects” with 1.3 megapixel resolution! It shoots movies and will store over 1000 photos and claims to be of durable kid-friendly design. On my forth try, I found the camera and bought it. I paid an additional 4.00 to insure this little camera because it is going to a four year old and lets face facts, you can’t trust a four year old not to flush it or drop it in a mud-puddle! Or to loose it in amongst all the other lost toys at parks and the local pizza pallor or, in Hannah’s case, in a cubicle stuffed with 100 or so stuffed animals.  I noticed that this camera, which does so much, has no strap of any kind.  I think it should have a strap for Hannah to use, at least one for her wrist, although in order for the strap to work properly a dot of super glue may be needed to secure it to Hannah’s wrist, just to make sure it did not slip off, as it surely would do. The slipping off of the strap would be an intentional action of Hannah, of course.

When Hannah’s mother decided to sideline her love of freelance photography for a greater love (Hannah) she never thought that the greatest joy in her life would become a mini version of herself — the apple never falls far from the tree — and who knows what may come out of Hannah’s grandmother spending four hours in as many stores to find the toy Hannah talks about from sun up to sun down. Is it possible this small beginning will end in an assortment of mega-long-range-zoom lenses and trips to far away places? If so I do hope it is a mother-daughter team trekking through the underbrush.


Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater

William Wallace Denslow’s illustrations for Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater, from a 1901 edition of Mother GooseOne of my all time favorite poems and one that my father said to me countless times is Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater.

One of my all time favorite poems is Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater but not because of the rhyme, rather for the memory of the countless times my father said it to me. He also recited Three Blind Mice quite often to me.  One might think — given Peter’s treatment of his wife not to mention three mice tails in jeopardy — my daddy was abusive by his pick of poetry to recite to a small child but the truth is he was a gentle soul with hands and arms like steel. He earned his living at the end of a hammer and hand saw, beginning at the lowest position. it is those days I remember the most. My father coming home covered in sawdust and construction grime, kissing Mama on her cheek, then washing up for super. I would look for him each day and he never disappointed. Always home from work on time and giving me a big hug before heading inside. When I was twelve we moved to Bonnie Street . Dad brought home a chalk board that he hung on the garage wall. It was then we began to leave each other messages each evening on the board (welcome home, sorry for the mason jar, Daddy  — and other such messages) which usually ended in I Love You. Looking back I think he did this because I was growing up and he wanted to preserve the evening ritual of my running up to him for his big hug. I think he knew in his father’s heart the day was coming that his little girl would wave from a neighbor’s front yard or the park down the street as he pulled into the drive.

Per Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, the rhyme is not present in any of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century collections published in Britain. The first surviving version of the rhyme was published in Mother Goose’s Quarto: or Melodies Complete, in Boston, Massachusetts around 1825. However, a verse collected from Aberdeen Scotland and published in 1868 had the words:

Peter, my neeper,
Had a wife,
And he couidna’ keep her,
He pat her i’ the wa’,
And lat a’ the mice eat her.

As a result it is possible that the verse was an older one adapted to include pumpkins in America. This verse is also considered to be an older version of the rhyme Eeper Weeper

Eeper Weeper, chimbly sweeper,
Had a wife but couldn’t keep her.
Had another, didn’t love her,
Up the chimbly he did shove her.

Other versions exist, however it appears new verse has in many cases been tweaked to fit a specific purpose.  The following modern version is an example.

Peter, Peter pumpkin eater,
Had a wife but couldn’t keep her;
He put her in a pumpkin shell
And there he kept her very well.
Peter, Peter pumpkin eater,
Had another and didn’t love her;
Peter learned to read and spell,
And then he loved her very well.

This gives me a new thought of how to decorate the front porch for Trick-R-Treat!

Life according to Bugs….

Got to give it up to Bugs — the bunny who taught me that carrots were okay to eat and that if I said “what’s up Doc” to my Mum — as an antidote to all things unappreciated  — I’d get a chuckle out of her instead of a less desired reaction.  

Taking life a little less seriously is key to taking life a little less seriously……

……because life should be fun!



I  advocate Action Against Abuse and pray a silent prayer you do as well . . .

Around 1946  my Mum Marie stood tall against abuse — long story short, because she stood tall that year three years later she became my Mum when she married my Daddy bringing with her two new brothers — the elder of my new brothers had (in the beginning of his relationships) a struggle with being abusive (what he saw is what he repeated) but the younger (by six years), who was influenced more from his mother’s new marriage to my Dad, never suffered the same condition. Why is this true? I think because he repeated what he witnessed and what he witnessed was a loving and happy couple.

Why am I telling you this?  Because I need to say it. And, because I want you to hear it.

I also remember doing things, just like my Mum, standing with my hand on my hip, just so, just like she did. This made my father laugh more than once when I was a kid. Kids mimic and are like a sponge soaking up everything parents do and the proof is in the words we, as adults, speak to our own children and sometimes, stop in our tracks and say, “Where did that come from” or “I sounded just like my Mom or Dad!” Yep, there you have it …. so speak love, compassion, empathy, kindness and charity and teach those principles.


I beseech you to take-care with the little ones. They are so precious.


and then . . . he got up in my face

She sat on the edge of the bed, tears spilling from her eyes explaining to me how much she regretted calling the police. I listened intently to her story and realized she lacked clarity about her situation — of non-violent and violent abuse — and to come to terms with all that had transpired over the last several days she, above all else, needed some clarity.

The details were not uncommon. I’d heard them before and as usual the actions remained the same, only the names were changed.

“The rent money is gone” she continued. Spent at the local pub on several shots dropped into a glass of draft-pulled beer.

“I went to the pub” she said “and I took the beer in front of him and dumped it out and without saying a word walked out to my car.” Then he had followed her, approaching the vehicle with angry intent to settle things. She swiftly pulled away and drove to a connivence store and bought a bottle of water and sat in the parking lot for several minutes before returning to the apartment they shared.

“He’d left his door key so he broke in the door. He shattered the door jamb and now I can’t lock my door. Then he threw my grandmother’s pretty glass bowl into the glass coffee table and shattered both of them” she continued.

“After that I was afraid and called the police but before they came and took my statement he ran off; they found him and took him into custody; now I feel so bad about putting him in jail” she said.

“I didn’t know what I was doing. The officer used a lot of big words I didn’t understand and he told me to sign here and I did but I didn’t know I was signing to put him in jail!”

“How could I do this to someone I love” she said.

She explained about the bonding process and the court appearances to come and it seemed the only thing she wanted to do was to make her mistake go away.

This situation is not uncommon. Most women who find themselves in abusive relationships take on a feeling of self-doubt and guilt after such an incidence as described here. Think of it as having an emotional bank account you keep making withdrawals from without ever making deposits leaving you, over time substantially overdrawn. Each time you rest the guilt of another’s abuse towards you squarely back on your own shoulders you make a withdrawal from your emotional bank account. Finding your way back to a positive emotional cash-flow takes extreme measures to relearn your self-worth. And, I tell you, you are worth it. But, it does take time and inner strength to accomplish. Emotional health is worth all the effort put forth to attain it.

If you take nothing from this post please take away this: You are worthy of respect, self-respect and the respect of others.

Be willing to say to those you love — and this means everyone you love i.e. your friends, your spouse, even your children — that you are unwilling to endure any abuse whatsoever. And, say it to yourself first! Go ahead, stand in front of the mirror and say it to yourself, out loud, and daily until your mind and heart is accepting of this one thing, which should become the core of who you are. You are a woman who respects herself vastly and does not appreciate, nor will take abuse.

I remember when I was marring my second husband he asked me, as most men will do, what it was I wanted most of all. I told him I wanted him to understand that I was fine before I met him and I’d be fine if things did not work out. I’d be sad but I’d be fine. And I told him that I loved myself too much to live with any form of abuse, verbal or otherwise. I said it in such a loving way too. You don’t need to be abrupt or ugly about these things you simply need to let someone you love know that they can’t hurt you, you will not stand for it.

Will the young woman heed the advice I gave her?

Only time will tell but I can tell you she is very smart, and even given last nights events does has a positive-cash-flow in her emotional bank account. I’m sure she will find an appropriate way to express her concerns with her young man whom, at present, is feeling a bit ridiculous, as he should. And, I’m sure when she suggest to him he gain some insight into his behavior of last evening (which I understood to be a first time occurrence, so let us not banish him yet) and become, again, one of the good guys he will embrace her request with an open mind and an open heart.

Will this repeat itself? It is possible. It is also possible that this is a one time and only time she’ll ever need to witness this behavior. She’ll keep me posted over the next six months and I’ll keep you posted, if indeed, any post is necessary.

Oh, come on, you know you’re interested :0)

I MISS YOU FRED – 5 Reasons why it is better to miss someone than to stay with them

We all love to be loved. That slight slip of the hand at the dip of your back (you know the dip; it’s the one right above the fanny you wish smaller) that lingers there for a moment — no one else touches you there; no one else dare. Sometimes we stay in the wrong relationship because we know we will miss these moments. But I have 5 reasons not to stay — you be the judge of the 5 arguments presented here and how true they are for you, but — please be as honest with yourself as possible before you decide that staying is the best thing for you to do.

5 Reasons Why it is Better to Miss Someone than to Stay with Them.

Reason number one:

Attendance (not attentiveness) is important in any relationship. Don’t confuse the two by thinking his being attentive when together translates into anything other than he is being attentive to you at the moment because he could be being attentive with another woman at another moment. Until he is in attendance with you, and only you, the majority of his time you two are dating, and dating is a nice thing to do; just don’t go thinking rings at this point for he’s a long way away from that choice. However, if you are there and he is not perhaps it is better to miss him than to stay with him.

Reason number two:

Dismissiveness is so important it should be at the top of any woman’s wish list. If ever you feel that your needs and your wants are being dismissed by him it is time to distance yourself. He’s not being mean. He’s being honest, of sorts, with you about how he feels about you. He’s not all that into you, sugar, so miss him if you must but don’t stay. Of course, I’m talking about a relationship, or dating, that has gone on for some time; months (not weeks) and he still doesn’t notice, for example, that you are ill and need chicken soup instead of the “where’s the dinner” nonsense.

Reason number three:

Inability to commit is perhaps one of the big stumping blocks of any relationship moving to the next level. I once was in a relationship with a man which worked very well. We were best friends and completely compatible (eerily, like two peas in a pod) but he wasn’t able to take the next step. Ever! And, I miss him to this day but if I’d stayed I’d still be waiting for him to take that step and it is likely he never would have. Some men simply can’t see you as their future. I don’t know why. Frankly, it doesn’t matter why. It just is. Move on and out the door.

Reason number four:

Already taken is appealing to some women, mostly because of a commitment phobia they have – but, you can’t move forward with a married man. Years ago, I had a girlfriend who only dated married men and it always ended badly for her. It took several months of therapy for her to learn how to control her relationship phobia. Although she struggled to overcome her attraction to married men, after the therapy, she was successful in finding an unmarried man she felt was her perfect partner in life, a wonderful man that she adores and they have been married now for nearly twenty years. Being in a relationship with a man who is already taken, usually — as in rarely — results in a marriage for you but if it does the odds are stacked against his remaining faithful to you. Reverse this situation: at home, darling, there is a woman who believes and trusts a husband to honor their marriage vows. This alone is a compelling reason to miss him than to stay with him.

Reason number five:

Abuse (verbal and/or non verbal) is a challenging bit to deal with. You want to stay and fix his relationship manners and you think you can. But, I’m telling you that you can not. He is the only one who can fix his relationship manners. This is perhaps the leading cause of discourse among teens to thirty-somethings in a relationship. Usually, somewhere in a woman’s thirties she gets a life! After which women don’t accept abuse of any kind, but, if this remains the case with you — my email is on file! Use it!

Grandma’s Always Know Best

One of my favorite television shows during the 1950s was a show called Father Knows Best. During the years (1945-1962) of my childhood, my family were big evening television users; shows like Father Knows Best, and other good clean family oriented series were enjoyed and rarely missed. I’ve always thought of Father Knows Best as with-out-a-doubt an American classics from that time period. It first appeared on radio (1949-1954) and then on television (1954-1960). It was a wonderful comedy series which portrayed a middle class family living in the Midwest during the 1940’s. The Anderson family were easily identifiable to my values oriented Daddy & Mum. I’ve never been sure if this show was not more a teaching tool used by them, but that is for another post.

The television series was created by writer Ed James [Note: If possible I always give credit to the writer] and honestly, viewing some of the old episodes I think he was a master at the art.

About a month ago three of my grandchildren, all girls (age 2, 3 & 4) came to stay for a few days. Because of all their antics, which kept us adults chuckling most of the time, they as well as their parents reminded me of the 1950’s sitcoms. As a grandmother this happened to make me feel rather good. It made me feel hopeful that my granddaughters’ adult lives would be a happy ones.

After they had left for their respective homes in North Carolina I happen to run across an article about early television shows. Unfortunately, I ran across it in the waiting room of the Oncology Center at Good Samaritan as I waited for my mother to reemerge from her radiation treatment. I’d love to have that article to reference but I do not. Anyway, to make a long story short: I had a flash-back to my granddaughters visit, the little quibbles which were solved by loving parents, the joy and all the fun they had.

Now, I am mentally exploring the possibility that my children are a throw back to 1950s America! Not a bad thing to happen, actually. Let’s face facts here: I am influenced by my growing up years, by the television shows of that time, by how my parents handled themselves and me; ergo, how I was a parent to my children, and how I continue to influence my grandchildren, as a grandmother.

My last thought to this post is: Always Remember Grandma Knows Best . . . this is according my granddaughter Destiny! She is a very intelligent youngster.