How to ensure you have a Non-Picky Eater

1) Make the child actually eat.

2) Let the child help prepare the dinner. It doesn’t matter how many odd ingredients are thrown in (tonight’s fare? a soup with both paprika and spearmint flavorings). Because children have such an unconscious ego, they set out with the assumption that anything they have a hand in is sure to be a winner. In the case of culinary arts, it’s good to encourage this attitude.

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Responses

The Story Cloths of Viet Nam

Today is the 30th Anniversary of the Fall of Saigon.

CanadaFreePress explains a few things everybody thought they knew about.

Bob Parsons was in Viet Nam, and he tells us that it gave him a taste of what hell might be like.

Carl Bildt of Sweden analyzes the past and says the U.S. was mistaken to fight in Viet Nam, but that Communism hasn’t been very healthy for the people there, either.

Powerline remembers the fall of Saigon

One of the DHM’s classmates in school after the fall of Saigon was a young Viet Namese refugee. I’ve always wondered what happened to her and her family later.

Another group of people affected by the collapse of democracy in that part of Asia are the Hmong. Many of the Hmong have made some beautiful story quilts illustrating their hsitory, their way of life, and their folk tales.

One of my relatives has a lovely example showing the Hmong people peacefully farming and going about their daily tasks, the communists invading, the Americans helping as the Hmong fight back, and then the torching of their villages as the Americans pull out, leaving them at the mercy of the communists- who had no mercy.

The final pictures on the quilt show the Hmong people escaping over a river, in small boats, floating on logs, in inner tubes from tires. Then they arrive in the United States to build a new life. The final picture always catches me at the throat- a Hmong refugee is sitting beneath a tree, and a thought bubble over his head says, “Thoughts of home.”

These are beautiful works of art, and if you haven’t seen them before, you can click on these links to have a look. I’m including the Amazon link because it allows you to look inside the book and zoom in on the page, giving the best image of the quilts I could find. I don’t own this book, but I will be putting it on hold at our library.

Just look at these images (Update: The images I’m swooning over are not the ones here on the blog- but if you click on the link below, and then choose to see inside the book- then you will be able to see some really good resolution of these lovely quilts):

Hmong Story Cloths– this one has some information about the images on the cloths- which include airplanes bombing a village and the escape across a river.

Using Textiles to Tell a Cultural Tale– wonderfully informative article on the Hmong people, their history, and their craft.

This link has a beautifully clear picture of one of the story cloths telling about the Hmong people during and after the way. Because this one is less cluttered than some others, it’s a little easier to follow the story. This page also has quite a bit of information about the Hmong people. I didn’t have time to read it all.

You can another glimpse of a beautiful story cloth here, along with some easy lesson plans.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Housekeeping stuff

We’ve added some things to the sidebar, another counter, an RSS feed thingie, some feeder button that’s animated and tells the latest Common Room posts, and a couple other whatchamacallits and thingummies.

As you can tell, we’re not too technologically astute here. We added the RSS feed because Blogdom of God says that we needed it. We don’t know what it is (this is not a request to explain it to us, explanations of things we aren’t going to be able to understand anyway make us fretful), so we can’t tell you, and we don’t remember much about how we got it, so we can’t tell you that, either.

But just in case any of these additions might be of interest to our readers, we mention that they are here, over in the sidebar, or messily arrayed at the bottom of the screen, depending on something else we don’t understand- perhaps the screen settings of the home computer? We don’t know. We just know that on one of the family computers everything looks nice and tidy, and on the other everything looks messy and cluttered and tacky.

If somebody insists on trying to explain these things to us, please try to phrase your terms as though you were addressing a rather dense three year old.

Thank-you.

Updated: I just added a paypal ‘make a donation’ button, which is totally tacky and a little embarrassing, but there it is. Please, please, please, don’t feel the least bit obligated to click on it and send us money so that we can stop feeding the children fish heads through the grate in the attic floor. They like fishheads. Really.

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Responses

Another ‘Zine

I mentioned earlier that The Eclectic Domestic and Bohemian Housewife (I just typed ‘Rhapsody,’ so now you know something else about my past) are a trip to the Natural Food Store.

Daughters of Sarah is a hot cup of tea (or coffee), chicken salad sandwiches, your favorite cookies, and a notebook and pen in hand as you visit with a Titus Two woman and take notes, thoughtfully exchange ideas on hospitality, books, raising children, and more. You’ll want to keep a Bible open next to you as you read, as most of the authors make frequent reference back to scripture.

The content of these zines overlaps in some areas, but not all. If you click on the link above you can read some sample articles from the magazine to get a feel for it.

Daughters of Sarah comes on paper that’s three-hole punched so you can put in a notebook for future reference. We refer back to our back issues often, most frequently for the recipes, but also for other articles.

Full Disclosure- the editress is one of my favorite Titus Two women, a dear personal friend, and just a really neat lady. I asked her if she would mind if I mentioned her publication here, and she said it was alright with her if I really wanted to, but she’s a little doubtful that it will be to everybody’s taste. I certainly hope not. I would hate to think I liked something that was to everybody’s taste- anything that pleases everybody isn’t particularly distinctive.

I like Daughters of Sarah, and if you think you would too, please consider a subscription. I don’t make anything from it, and I don’t even think the editress makes much than her costs, if that much. Its publication is one of her many acts of kindness.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Response

Primer on Judicial Nominations

Thanks to World Magazine’s blog, which linked to these two speeches:

Al Gore: Complete transcript of speech he delivered to a rally sponsored by MoveOn. Says “Doing Away With Judicial Filibuster Undermines Rule of Law.”

Sen Orrin Hatch: Transcript of address to the Senate floor. Says he’s “Diagnosing The Filibuster Issue.”

Extract- but you really should click on the link and give it a read for yourself. Gore covers a lot of ground and no excerpt can do justice to the full scope of his speech:

Our founders understood that the way you protect and defend people of faith is by preventing any one sect from dominating. Most people of faith I know in both parties have been getting a belly-full of this extremist push to cloak their political agenda in religiosity and mix up their version of religion with their version of right-wing politics and force it on everyone else.

They should learn that religious faith is a precious freedom and not a tool to divide and conquer.

I think it is truly important to expose the fundamental flaw in the arguments of these zealots. The unifying theme now being pushed by this coalition is actually an American heresy-a highly developed political philosophy that is fundamentally at odds with the founding principles of the United States of America.

We began as a nation with a clear formulation of the basic relationship between God, our rights as individuals, the government we created to secure those rights, and the prerequisites for any power exercised by our government.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident,” our founders declared. “That all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights …”

But while our rights come from God, as our founders added, “governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just power from the consent of the governed.”

So, unlike our inalienable rights, our laws are human creations that derive their moral authority from our consent to their enactment-informed consent given freely within our deliberative processes of self-government.

Any who seek to wield the powers of government without the consent of the people, act unjustly.

Over sixty years ago, in the middle of the Second World War, Justice Jackson wrote: “If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion.”

His words are no less true today.

The historic vulnerability of religious zealots to subordinate the importance of the rule of law to their ideological fervor was captured best in words given by the author of “A Man For All Seasons” to Sir Thomas More.

When More’s zealous son-in-law proposed that he would cut down any law in England that served as an obstacle to his hot pursuit of the devil, More replied: “And when the last law was cut down and the devil turned round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast-man’s laws, not God’s-and if you cut them down, and you’re just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then?”

The Senate leaders remind me of More’s son-in-law. They are now proposing to cut down a rule that has stood for more than two centuries as a protection for unlimited debate. It has been used for devilish purposes on occasion in American history, but far more frequently, it has been used to protect the right of a minority to make its case.

Extract- but you should really read the whole thing:

Giving judicial nominations reaching the floor an up or down vote, that is, exercising our role of advice and consent through voting on nominations, helps us resist the temptation of turning our check on the President’s power into a force that can destroy the President’s power and upset the Constitution’s balance.

Historically, we have followed this standard. When Republicans ran the Senate under President Clinton, we gave each of his judicial nominations reaching the floor a final confirmation decision. We took cloture votes, that is, votes to end debate, on just four of the hundreds of nominees reaching us here. All four were confirmed.

In fact, even on the most controversial appeals court nominations by President Clinton, the Republican leadership used cloture votes to prevent filibusters and ensure up or down votes, exactly the opposite of how cloture votes are used today.

Confirm Them tries to stay on top of the issues here.

Here’s one point:

“…about California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown… the DNC says this:

Brown On Seniors: Cannibalizing Their Grandchildren. Brown: “Today’s senior citizens blithely cannibalize their grandchildren because they have a right to get as much ‘free’ stuff as the political system will permit them to extract.” [pfaw.org; Dissenting opinion in Stevenson v. Superior Court, 941 P.2d 1157,1177, 1187 (Cal. 1997)]

If you look up that court case, you will not find anything remotely like those quoted words.* It’s as simple as that. Period. Nevertheless, this blatantly false information is being circulated by the DNC here, and here. It’s also on Minority Leader Reid’s official web site here. It’s just shameful.

In reality, Justice Brown never wrote those words in a judicial opinion.

It’s possible she said it as a private citizen, which is different from a judicial ruling. There’s a link to a PDF file which might have some further information and context about that, but I can’t get it to work. If you do, you can give me the gist of it in the comments section.

Powerline remarks on Frist’s attempt to work out a compromise. Good stuff there.

Patterico has a bizarre statement from Barack Obama, Senator from Illinois. According to the L.A. Times, Obama

denounced Frist’s offer as insincere, saying that if it were a serious compromise, conservative activists would be unhappy.

That’s the L.A. Times, so it may not be true, although usually the LAT’s distortions are calculated to make the right look silly, not the left, and this statement certainly is a silly one, as Patterico says. What a standard! “If it doesn’t make the people I don’t like angry, then it’s not a compromise.”

Grownups understand that compromise is sometimes something that must happen and there is no point in pouting and sulking over it. I think this was a serious compromise, and conservative groups are behaving like adults in accepting it.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


  • The Common Room on Facebook

  • Amazon: Buy our Kindle Books

  • Search Amazon


    Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

  • Brainy Fridays Recommends: