Archive for September, 2008

Understanding The Fannie Mae Meltdown In 10 Minutes Or Less

(this video was temporarily removed from youtube, but is back.  I also had to pause several times so that I could finish reading before the video advanced…)

I emplore you to educate yourself.  Goggle the articles referenced in this video.   I did.

When you vote this election, make it an educated vote.

References:

Community Reinvestment Act

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Community_Reinvestment_Act

New agency proposed to oversee freddie mac and fannie mae – Article – NEW YORK TIMES Publised Sept 2003!!!!

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9E06E3D6123BF932A2575AC0A9659C8B63&sec=&spon=&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink

Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s109-190&tab=summary

http://www.opensecrets.org/

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Red Box

I am not sure if they are everywhere, or just local.  But I love the Red Box Movie rental at my local grocery store.  For those who are not familiar, there is vending machine like huge red colored box in front the store.  You walk up, make your selection, swipe your credit card and out pops your movie.  Rental cost is $0.99 per night.  And you can return it to any Red Box, it does not have to be the one you picked it up from.

Before I continue to swoon over Red Box, I would like to go on record as a supporter of small local owned businesses.  And I make every effort to shop them first.  But the local store only carries a few copies of new releases, and they never seem to be in stock when I get there.  I will use the local video store for older movies, because Red Box stocks new releases only.

That being said, I dont get to see very many movies.  Between a full time job, three kidsfour kids (if you include the fiancee), two dogs, a house, volunteer work, and kids extra curricular activities, I have no time.  Really, I’m lucky to shave my legs once a week.  I got the chance to see some of the summer releases while the kids visited their father and grandparents.  Below is my current want to see list.  Am I missing anything good?

  1. Sex and the City
  2. 88 Minutes
  3. What Happens in Vegas
  4. Iron Man
  5. Then She Found Me
  6. Smart People

Working Mom’s Struggles

I read a post this morning by my friend Catnip who is also a working mom.  She talked about her struggles with reciprocating playdates.  My kids are a bit older and no longer schedule playdates.  But often I am confronted with an obstacles of being a working mom.  Here are a list of my gripes:

  1. Recreational sports start at 5:30.  I get out of work at 5:00.  I have to rush home, honk in the driveway and go directly to the practice.  Makes cooking dinner impossible three nights a week since each child meets at different times.
  2. After school activities.  I am so glad that my kids are involved in school.  But there is no bus service for after school activities.  Which means I have to beg other parents to give my kids rides, or I have to take off work early, or weather permitting I actually have my kids walk the mile home.
  3. Can I ride home on my friends bus and play?  I get asked this question over and over.  And its great, and I want them to play with friends.  But I work until 5:00, and if we don’t have practice, then I have a million things to do every night and cannot have extra kids over.  (this piggybacks on Catnips reciprocating dilemma)
  4. Birthday Party’s on School days.  WTF.  My daughter has been invited to a birthday party this afternoon at 4:00.  I know that I am not the only working mom.  And taking off from work early so that i can bring my daughter to a birthday party is NOT happening.  Sometimes I think SAHM’s can be so insensitive to the challenges of working mom’s schedules.

I am sure I will think of some more and add them to the list at a later date.  But I have to stop blogging and get my ass to work!

Bail Out?

Anyone have an opinion about the bail out plan going before Congress.  $700 Billion dollars.  Where is that money coming from?  No one seems to be talking about that.  We don’t have money for health care, or to bring our bridges to code, but we have bail out money?  I think its irresponsible to use  massive sums of taxpayer funds testing an idea that has been hastily crafted and may actually cause more damage in the long term than good in the present. 

I feel sorry for the people who are in over their heads with their mortgages. I feel sorry for them because of their greed, and their need to keep up with the Jones’, made them borrow more then they could afford to live in a home greater than their means.   I am sorry for the families who chose granite counter tops, 3000+ sf living space, spa tubs and other lavish amenities over the financial security of their families.  Yes, the banks loaned them the money, it must be their fault.  Thats what Americans do, diffuse responsibility…  “the banks made me do it”, “they forced me to upgrade my home”, “and now I dont want to have to pay my mortgage”, “boo-hoo, I can’t afford this”

I feel sorry for me, living in my conservative home, paying my bills and not spending beyond my means.  Because now, I have to carry the tax burden of the bail out plan.

Episode 2 – Vanishing Weekends

Here we go again, its Monday, I am exhausted going into the week, my to-do-list has doubled and I wish I could cocoon myself in my blankets and sleep for another 4 hours.  Once again, my weekend was productive.  Friday, with the assistance of my dear friend, I took apart my son’s loft bed to make room for his new bunk beds, and delivered it to my friend’s house for her son to use.  We ate Chinese together and then me and my tribe made our bi-weekly trip to the Air Force Base to shop at the Commissary.  We didn’t get home until 8:45pm and still had to unload and put away.

Saturday started with laundry, a trash run to the dump, and getting the three kiddies ready for their soccer games.  Somehow, I got roped into taking an extra kid home after the game, conflict in schedules for his family.  We had to pick up Cameron’s new bed and unload it.  Oh my aching back it was heavy.  Saturday night was our couple’s poker game, and I started to really feel sick. 

Sore throat!  Ugh!!!  I don’t have time to be sick.  Sunday was just a normal day of cooking and maintaining.  Feeling under the weather prevented any super mom accomplishments like assembling the new bed, or conquering the mountain of laundry. 

And now, back to the rat race of work, school, band, chorus, and soccer. 

If you are crafty…

If you are crafty, or crafty wanna-be that needs a push in the right direction for creative inspiration, then check out this site.  I stumbled upon it a few weeks ago.

Wanted to share!

studiojkvinyl

Are you ready for some Football – #2

Well its week three of the regular season.  I am 2-0 for my fantasy league.  This week is really big deal, I play my fiancee.  This is a huge test to our relationship.  We are both super competitive.  Right now, I am favored to win.  I have Tony Romo for my quarterback, and he has been putting up the numbers for me.  I have a decent group of wide receivers.  My short fall is runningbacks.  I picked #7 in draft order, and first round choice was Joseph Addai.  So far, he has been a huge disappointment.  Right now I have him benched for the week.  Wish me luck!

Ode to the Kids

So in following up to my last post, this is all about them!
My eldest son is in 7th grade and was selected to be in the advanced math program.  He is talking pre- algebra this year.  He is also taking French.  I have tired to encourage him to participate in other school activities, but he protests a bit.  He definitely does not want to be in band again.  He is doing fall soccer and seems that his main focus is his social life.   Which for me means carting him to his friends houses, to the movies, and coming soon…  his FIRST school dance.
 
My Dear Daughter and middle child wrote a speech that she had to read in front of the 5th grade, she was running for student council.  She had to collect 25 signatutes from her classmates to be eligible to run. Unfortunatly, she was only voted alternate.  But later we found out the girl who won had given candy out to kids to sway their vote.  This is TOTALLY against the rules.  So Monday, I will be that mom, and go to school and complain.  She has also decided she wants to be in Band, and we just purchased her flute and she starts lessons on Tuesday.  She is also doing fall soccer and is on the same team as her older brother, which mortifies him. 
 
My baby boy, not so much a baby anymore, is in 4th grade.  He also ran for student council.  He had to write a letter to the fourth grade teachers stating why he thought he would be a good candiate to represent his class.  Of course, the two kids who were selected were children of parents who are school volunteers and on the PTA BOARD this year.  Those kids who won could have said, “I want to be on student council so I can steal from the school store,” and they still would have been selected. Being a stay at home mom sure has its perks, unfortunatly I have to work.   He is doing fall soccer.  He has been saying for a while that he would like a new bed.  The one he has now is a loft bed, that he stores his toys under.  His complaint is its too high for Rocky our dog to be able to lay with him.  We finally found what we thought would be a good option for his room.  It also gives him a place for a friend if he has a sleep over, because its a bunk bead.  And now he wants to be in guitar club.  Which means he needs a guitar.   Gonna ask grandma for help $$ with that one.
After all they have been through, I think overall they are good, well rounded, intellegent children – despite the gene pool from which they came.  Quite often I get complimented on how respectful and well behaved they are.  But they are a lot of work, and take up a lot of my time.  Really, I work two full time jobs.  The one that makes me money, and the one that makes me rich. 

You and Me Against the World

I am just now starting to lurk around and read other peoples posts, and I find that lots of people write about their kids.  I have looked over my past posts and realize that I really don’t write about my kids.  I may mention them, but none of my posts are really about them.  And I started to wonder why, and realize that every moment of my life is about them, from the time I wake up in the morning, until the time I go to bed.  And this is the only place that is all mine.  And I need this avenue, to get my thoughts out there.  Sort of my own free therapy, like going to the gym.

My kids are my everything.  I did the single mom thing for quite some time after my divorce, before the fiancee came into the picture.  So I really feel like we have a unique bond, like we conquered something together.  And when I say it was just me and them, we were really alone.  Every member of our family lives in Louisiana, and we live in New England.  Geographically, I not sure they could be any further away and still be CONUS.  We only had each other, and we all worked together to make it work.  And in reading this, it sounds like my kids are older children.  But at the time of my divorce, my kids were 4, 5 and 7.  The were still babies for godsake!  But they were great, they understood when we didn’t have the money to do extra things.  And were content with the time I was able to give them, rather than the things I couldn’t buy them.

My mom and dad divorced when I was 3.  She did the single mom thing for 5 years before my step-dad came into the picture.  I remember her playing over and over on the record player You and Me Against the World by Helen Reddy (give it a listen, its worth following the link).  It was her song to me and my sister.  Today, it has a whole new meaning.  I now understand why her eyes welled up with tears when it played.  And now the meaning it holds for me, for my children.

Wrong Email Address

A Minneapolis couple decided to go to Florida to thaw out during a particularly icy winter.

They planned to stay at the same hotel where
They spent their honeymoon 20 years earlier.
Because of hectic schedules, it was difficult to coordinate their travel schedules.

So, the husband left Minnesota and flew to Florida on Thursday , with his wife flying down the following day.
The husband checked into the hotel.

There was a computer in his room, So he decided to send an email to his wife.

However, he accidentally left out one letter in her email address , and without realizing his error, sent the email.
Meanwhile, somewhere in Houston, a widow had just returned home from her husband’s funeral.

He was a minister who was called home to glory following a heart attack.
The widow decided to check her email expecting messages from relatives and friends.

After reading the first message, she screamed and fainted.

The widow’s son rushed into the room, found his mother on the Floor, and saw the computer screen which read:
To: My Loving Wife
Subject: I’ve Arrived
Date: October 16, 2007
I know you’re surprised to hear from me.
They have computers here now and you are allowed to send emails to your loved ones.

I’ve just arrived and have been checked in.

I’ve seen that everything has been prepared for your arrival tomorrow.
Looking forward to seeing you then!!!!
Hope your journey is as uneventful as mine was.

P.S. Sure is freaking hot down here!!!!

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