Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Happy 21st Birthday Dutch Bag!

Yeah, I know...that's not how it's spelled.

Sucks having an inside joke with a box of ashes.

Oh well, happy birthday all the same. I had a dream the other night about you and you had aged. Your hair was shorter, still long, but shorter; your face had more character and looked older. I wonder if that was really you? Some people think that they will get to be 25 again in their resurrection bodies....so maybe God jumped you up to what your 25 year old body would have looked like. I miss you terribly and this all still feels like a bad dream, but I know that now I'm another year closer to seeing you again.

Ok, enough of that.

Happy birthday; I know it has to be the highlight of your death to be featured in my blog. Thanks for letting me use your memory to solicit sympathy from my friends. (:

Sunday, June 24, 2007

I Am Sick Of America!

Happy 4th of July.

Lately I have been researching the struggles women go through overseas; how they are shot point blank in "honor killings", sold into prostitution, and raped at the age of twelve....then I have the audacity to turn on E.

How dare I.

I see this show called 'Suntan something...' and these ridiculous women are arguing over such insane nonsenses that I have a hard time readjusting my brain; I get cultural vertigo. I am ashamed to call myself an American woman. We are stupid! We have bleached most of the sense we are born with straight out of our brains and the rest we just pollute with silicone.

You know when you go and see a movie, and then after it is over as you are walking out you're almost surprised by the lack of mood music and play by play narration. You have to take a minute to adjust to what reality actually is. But why do I feel that way after watching 'reality T.V.'? I mean, I'm comparing apples with apples, right?

How can eastern civilization be so drastically different from western? As I count my blessings for being born here I often think, 'why am I who I am'? Am I a product of my environment or my experiences? Would I be better off if my character were tested more...on a far deeper level? I won't dare to say that I envy the torture that women overseas face. I live in a cushy suburban environment and I know that the biggest tragedy in my life would barely scratch the surface of women living even 30 minutes from me.

I recently met a women who's faith inspires me in such an immense way. She is a single mother and has three children who depend solely on her. With all of the stress she is constantly under the one constant in her life is her belief in God's faithfulness. Whether you are a friend or the person behind her in the grocery store she will testify to how Christ provides day in and day out for her needs. She is so elated by his blessings that she recently made this comment when asked 'so how do you guys like this warm weather' where she responded "well we don't have any air conditioning but since we have cement floors I just lay down on them and they are so cool!, God is good!' And she is right, he is! God is good! No, she is not in the minority of Plano norm, but compared to so many others in the world, she is blessed! I am blessed; you are blessed. God is good, sooooo good to us!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

AMAZING ARTICLE!!! She Hit The Nail On The Head!

Christina Hoff Sommers: The problem with American feminists
Preoccupied with their own imagined oppression, they are of little help to the women of the world who most need it
The subjection of women in Muslim societies – especially in Arab nations and in Iran – is today very much in the public eye. Accounts of lashings, stonings and honor killings are regularly in the news, and searing memoirs by Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Azar Nafisi have become major best-sellers. One might expect that by now American feminist groups would be organizing protests against such glaring injustices, joining forces with the valiant Muslim women who are working to change their societies. This is not happening.
If you go to the Web sites of major women's groups – such as the National Organization for Women, the Ms. Foundation for Women and the National Council for Research on Women – or to women's centers at our major colleges and universities, you'll find them caught up with entirely other issues, seldom mentioning women in Islam.
It is not that American feminists are indifferent to the predicament of Muslim women. Nor do they completely ignore it. For a brief period before 9/11, many women's groups protested the brutalities of the Taliban. But they have never organized a full-scale mobilization against gender oppression in the Muslim world. The condition of Muslim women may be the most pressing women's issue of our age, but for many contemporary American feminists it is not a high priority. Why not?
The reasons are rooted in the worldview of the women who shape the concerns and activities of contemporary American feminism. That worldview is antagonistic toward the United States, agnostic about marriage and family, hostile to traditional religion and wary of femininity. The contrast with Islamic feminism could hardly be greater.
One reason is that many feminists are tied up in knots by multiculturalism and find it very hard to pass judgment on non-Western cultures. They are far more comfortable finding fault with American society for minor inequities (the exclusion of women from the Augusta National Golf Club, the "underrepresentation" of women on faculties of engineering) than criticizing heinous practices beyond our shores. The occasional feminist scholar who takes the women's movement to task for neglecting the plight of foreigners is ignored or ruled out of order.
Take psychology professor Phyllis Chesler. She has been a tireless and eloquent champion of the rights of women for more than four decades. In a recent book, The Death of Feminism, she faults the feminist establishment for "embracing an anti-Americanism that is toxic, heartless, mindless and suicidal." The sisterhood has rewarded her with excommunication.
But Ms. Chesler is right. In the literature of women's studies, the United States is routinely portrayed as if it were just as oppressive as any country in the developing world. Here is a typical example of what one finds in popular women's studies textbooks (from Women: A Feminist Perspective, now in its fifth edition):
The word "terrorism" invokes images of furtive organizations. ... But there is a different kind of terrorism, one that so pervades our culture that we have learned to live with it as though it were the natural order of things. Its target is females – of all ages, races, and classes. It is the common characteristic of rape, wife battery, incest, pornography, harassment. ... I call it "sexual terrorism."
The primary focus is on the "terror" at home. Katha Pollitt, a columnist at The Nation, talks of "the common thread of misogyny" connecting Christian Evangelicals to the Taliban. And on most American campuses there are small coteries of self-described "vagina warriors" looking for ways to expose and make much of the ravages of patriarchy.
Soon after 9/11, Ms. Pollitt wrote the introduction to a book called Nothing Sacred: Women Respond to Religious Fundamentalism and Terror . It aimed to show that reactionary religious movements everywhere are targeting women. Says Ms. Pollitt:
In Bangladesh, Muslim fanatics throw acid in the faces of unveiled women; in Nigeria, newly established sharia courts condemn women to death by stoning for having sex outside of wedlock. ... In the United States, Protestant evangelicals and fundamentalists have forged a powerful right-wing political movement focused on banning abortion, stigmatizing homosexuality and limiting young people's access to accurate information about sex.
Ms. Pollitt casually places "limiting young people's access to accurate information about sex" and opposing abortion on the same plane as throwing acid in women's faces and stoning them to death. Her hostility to the United States renders her incapable of distinguishing between private American groups that stigmatize gays and foreign governments that hang them. She has embraced a feminist philosophy that collapses moral categories in ways that defy logic, common sense, and basic decency.
Eve Ensler, lionized author of The Vagina Monologues, takes this line of reasoning to equally ludicrous lengths. In 2003, she gave a lecture at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University in which, like Ms. Pollitt, she claimed that women are oppressed and subordinate across the globe: "I think the conditions are exactly the same," she said.
Though Ms. Ensler's perspective is warped, her courage and desire to help are commendable. She went to Afghanistan during the reign of the Taliban and smuggled out now-famous footage of a terrified woman in a burqa being executed by a man with an AK-47. But her "feminist theory" obliterates distinctions between what goes on in Afghanistan and what goes on in Beverly Hills:
I went from Beverly Hills where women were getting vaginal laser rejuvenation surgery – paying $4,000 to get their labias trimmed to make them symmetrical because they didn't like the imbalance. And I flew to Kenya where [women were working to stop] the practice of female genital mutilation. And I said to myself, "What is wrong with this picture?"
A better question is: What is wrong with Eve Ensler? These two surgical phenomena are completely different in both scale and purpose. The number of American women who undergo "vaginal labial rejuvenation" is minuscule, and they are seeking relief from physical irregularities that cause them embarrassment or inhibit their sexual enjoyment. By contrast, more than 100 million girls and women have undergone female genital mutilation. The practitioners, in countries such as Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia and Somalia, believe that removing sensitive parts of the anatomy is the best way to control young women's sexual urges and assure chastity.
These are priorities?
On February 20, 2007, a Pakistani women's rights activist and provincial minister for social welfare, Zilla Huma Usman, was shot to death by a Muslim fanatic for not wearing a veil. And he had a second reason for killing her: She had encouraged girls in her community to take part in outdoor sports.
The plight of women like Ms. Usman does not figure in the National Organization for Women's "Six Priority Items," although global feminism is one of the 19 subjects it designates as "Other Important Issues." NOW hardly mentions Muslim women, except in the context of the demand that the U.S. military withdraw from Iraq. So what sort of issue does the flagship feminist organization consider important?
NOW has just launched a 2007 "Love Your Body" calendar as part of its ongoing initiative of the same name. The body calendar warns of an increase in eating disorders and includes a photograph celebrating the shape of pears. There is also an image of the Statue of Liberty with the caption, "Give me your curves, your wrinkles, your natural beauty yearning to breathe free."
To breathe free, college women are encouraged to organize "Love Your Body" evenings. NOW suggests they host "Indulgence" parties: "Invite friends over and encourage them to wear whatever makes them feel good – sweat suits, flip flops, pajamas – and serve delicious, decadent foods or silly snacks without the guilt. Urge everyone to come prepared to talk about their feelings and experiences."
This is pathetic. To be sure, serious eating disorders afflict a small percentage of women. But much larger numbers suffer because poor eating habits and inactivity render them overweight, even obese. NOW should not be encouraging college girls to indulge themselves in ways detrimental to their well-being. Nor should it be using the language of human rights in discussing the weight problems of American women.
The inability to make simple distinctions shows up everywhere in contemporary feminist thinking. The Penguin Atlas of Women in the World, edited by geographer Joni Seager, is a staple in women's studies classes in universities. Ms. Seager, formerly a professor of women's studies and chair of geography at the University of Vermont, is now dean of environmental studies at York University in Toronto. Her atlas, a series of color-coded maps and charts, documents the status of women, highlighting the countries where women are most at risk for poverty, illiteracy, and oppression.
One map shows how women are kept "in their place" by restrictions on their mobility, dress and behavior. Somehow the United States comes out looking as bad in this respect as Uganda: Both countries are shaded dark yellow, to signify extremely high levels of restriction. Ms. Seager explains that in parts of Uganda, a man can claim an unmarried woman for his wife by raping her. The United States gets the same rating because, Ms. Seager says, "state legislators enacted 301 anti-abortion measures between 1995 and 2001."
Extreme becomes the norm
Hard-line feminists such as Ms. Seager, Ms. Pollitt, Ms. Ensler and the NOW activists represent the views of only a tiny fraction of American women. Even among women who identify themselves as feminists (about 25 percent), they are at the radical extreme. But in the academy and in most of the major women's organizations, the extreme is the mean. The hard-liners set the tone and shape the discussion. It is a sad state of affairs.
The good news is that Muslim women are not waiting around for Western feminists to rescue them. The number of valiant and resourceful Muslim women who are devoting themselves to the cause of greater freedom grows every day.
They have a heritage to build on. There have been organized women's movements in countries such as Iran, Lebanon, and Egypt for more than a century. And many women in Turkey, Morocco, and Tunisia already enjoy almost Western levels of freedom. But as radical Islam tightens its grip in places like Iran and rural Pakistan, even some devoutly religious women are quietly organizing to resist. Mehrangiz Kar, an Iranian human rights lawyer and a researcher at Harvard Law School, predicts that "a feminist explosion is well on its way."
The feminism that is quietly surging in the Muslim world is quite different from its contemporary counterpart in the United States. Islamic feminism is faith-based, family-centered and well-disposed towards men. This is feminism in its classic and most effective form, as students of women's emancipation know. American women won the vote in the early 20th century through the combined forces of progressivism and conservatism. Radical thinkers like Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Victoria Woodhull and Alice Paul played an indispensable role, but it was traditionalists like Frances Willard (president of the Women's Christian Temperance Union) and Carrie Chapman Catt (founder of the League of Women Voters) who brought the cause of women's suffrage into the mainstream.
The women who constitute the American feminist establishment today, however, are destined to play little role in the battle for Muslim women's rights. Preoccupied with their own imagined oppression, they can be of little help to others – especially family-centered Islamic feminists. The Katha Pollitts and Eve Enslers, the vagina warriors and university gender theorists – these are women who cannot distinguish between free and unfree societies, between the Taliban and the Promise Keepers, between being forced to wear a veil and being socially pressured to be slender and fit. Their moral obtuseness leads many of them to regard helping Muslim women as "colonialist" or as part of a "hegemonic" "civilizing mission." It disqualifies them as participants in this moral fight.
In reality, of course, it is the Islamic feminists themselves who are on a civilizing mission – one that is vital to their own welfare and to the welfare of an anxious world. A reviewer of Canadian human rights activist Irshad Manji's manifesto celebrating Islamic feminism aptly remarked, "This could be Osama bin Laden's worst nightmare." Ipso facto, it should be our fondest dream. And if, along the way, Islamic feminism were to have a wholesome influence on American feminism, so much the better.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

PORN: A Conservative Woman's View Of An Insulting American Pastime

While most of my blogs are kid friendly this one certainly is not. In you have any level of decency I suggest you not read the following commentary.
Society teaches us that this is an acceptable, natural, and some times even a necessary resource for many adolescent boys. So, like many of their peers, these 12-13-14 year old boys sneak into daddy's closet and snoop around until they find that revered stack of playboys so they can get their first glimpse of the female anatomy and pass it around the neighborhood tree house. Pretty innocent, right? Unfortunately, it's not.

This is incredibly dangerous as a matter of fact. Dads, this is about as responsible as a parent who leaves a bag of marijuana out for their children to sample. While it may just be their first brush with something forbidden it quickly becomes a life long stronghold. Unlike many other shiny, new things, though, this one doesn't ever loose its 'luster'. And as time goes on these young men have now had years to bond with this "habit" and it has grown into a full blown compulsion. They do not check it at the door to manhood, no, they visit it frequently all through out college and then they keep it firmly tucked under the mattress of their marriage bed hidden much better than daddy's playboys.

Pornography is toxic to our society, our children, our marriages, and our morals. There is a reason Paul says to "flee it!" He is well aware that it will get its claws in us and never let go. I am well aware that it is human nature to seek pleasure, but does that make it good? Life is about building character by denying such things, porn is no exception. I choose to parent my child; I will not let society do it. I choose to live in purity, and keep my eyes on edifying things. I choose to turn a 'battle' into nothing more than a pestering nuisance.

Thankfully I am blessed to have a husband who shares these same views and values. As a man he admits it's something he has to constantly turn from; which hurts me to hear, but I am also grateful that my companion has acknowledged the temptation and proactively works on guarding himself against it.

Unfortunately, I have noticed that an increasing number of my girlfriends are struggling with this hurtful issue in their own relationships. They are constantly having to tell themselves that this is acceptable, natural, necessary. If they ever have a problem with it, it's because they are prudes or just self conscious. This way of thinking makes me want to pull my hair out! NO ONE should have to tolerate the person they love disrespecting them like this. And men today should not put their wives in the position where they even have to ask them to stop lusting after another women. Hello, YOU ARE LUSTING AFTER ANOTHER WOMEN! That is not acceptable. But so many men still have the mindset of that 12 year old little boy who's getting away with his perversions and they seem to hold that mentality near and dear to their heart, refusing to ever grow up. It overwhelms me and I find myself coming to the conclusion that all we can do is pray for the next generation because sometimes I think this one is already too far gone. Peace.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Move Over Joan Crawford!

I forgot Aiden at V.B.S. today.

I was cleaning and just got so involved....I feel terrible. I don't even know what finally made me look at the clock. God, I guess; saying come pick up your kid already!

My mom used to always forget me. Well, not really forget me but she was always running late. She was very busy and important though; I am neither. I never wanted Aiden to have that feeling; being the last kid in the place; knowing that while people are smiling nicely they really wish your parents would hurry up and get there because they have stuff to do. My mom would forget me at school. I remember my teachers calling her every few minutes and acting like I wasn't an inconvenience, but I could always see through that. I don't know what's worse, having a teacher call or having God call.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Awkward Moments

Don't you just love when 20 seconds of silence turns into 40, then 60....before you know it you've been staring at someones shoes for two minutes and your mind is completely blank. You keep thinking 'say something anything...anything....ok seriously...ANYTHING!' ...yeah, baby showers are great.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Site To See

Ok, so I went and purchased my kurtas this week; turns out the ones I had in mind are the basic men's kurtas. The women's ones were all very beautiful, but flashy. Either way I really do enjoy them. I plan on creating a pattern from the ones I got and then sewing my own.

And just when I thought I had broken free from my worldly threads, I discover this site:

Take the time to check it out! They have put a whole new, punky, spin on your normal right to life gear. I love their modesty shirts! So ...I was weak...I ordered a few....you know....just for laundry days....something to wear while my kurtas are fluff and folding.