Archive for September, 2008


Thursday, September 25th, 2008

As a family we have recently been reading the Kit series from the American Girl Series.  Kit is a fictitious girl growing up in the Great Depression.  I like some things about this series, and dislike other things about it.  For one thing it makes the entitlement programs that FDR instituted sound purely good, and doesn’t talk about the bad they did, let alone the unconstitutionality of them.  They didn’t even shorten the depression, and they might have prolonged it, although perhaps in the overall economy not letting things get as low as they might have done.  With regards to the ways that people made things go farther I do enjoy it.  It makes me wish even more that we could have chickens. 

We also read about Milton Hershey from the Childhood of Famous Americans series.  What a great read!  It has a great message of combining the need to have dreams with the need to then work hard for those dreams.  Mr. Hershey had big dreams, but he worked hard for them.  He was also a generous man who never forgot his own difficult childhood.  We read it for Collin’s Knights of Freedom group.  I know he can read them on his own, and that he would, but we all love hearing about these great people in history.  The Knights of Freedom group down here has “quests” that go along with each book for them to do if the boys want.  They earn beads and special charms to put on these neat looking KOF dog tags that each boy got.  Collin was very excited to do the quests, and it was pretty cool.  He got to see a short movie at the Hershey website and look at actual pictures of Hershey, PA before drawing his own town for a business of his own.  When he got done with everything he came to me and told me “Mom, I want to go on a family vacation to Hershey’s town.”  Sione and I both like the idea, now we just have to put it in our future plans.

We also just finished reading King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table by Roger Lancelyn Green.  That was an interesting read.  Quite a lot of fighting and killing, but I suppose that is to be expected when you are reading about medieval knights.  A lot of magic, chivalry, and human struggle against sins.  There was quite a bit of striving to be good and better, although they didn’t always rise above.  The kids particularly liked it when I became even more melodramatic in my voices during the chapter about Launcelot and Guinevere when they were confessing their love for each other.  And when Gawain lies dying of wounds he received from Launcelot and he has forgiven him he writes a letter that was just to beautiful and flowery to not chuckle at a bit.  I need to follow it up with some history lessons on Saxon and Norman invasions of Britain.  Particularly since I didn’t do it with Robin Hood either. 

Now we are going to embark on Robinson Crusoe, and I hope to get it finished within the next couple of weeks.  I plan on reading The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Rip Van Winkle as a family in October.  Collin’s next book for KOF is the book about Theodore Roosevelt from the Childhood of Famous Americans, so that will be in there somewhere as well.

For my own personal reading I have recently finished reading The Second Great Depression by Warren Brussee and Financial Peace by Dave Ramsey.  I am now about half way through Crash Proof by Peter D. Schiff.  I started the Second Great Depression almost a year ago, and became a little overwhelmed with other things in my life for a while.  I just didn’t really get it picked back up until recently.  Parts of it I skimmed because of the relevancy of it for me right now.  I did find some of it very interesting.  Reading Crash Proof right now is also extremely interesting.  I know some people are HUGE Dave Ramsey fans, and take everything he says as gospel.  I really like to listen to him, and I found a lot of value in his book.  It is interesting to compare what I have read in his book with what I am learning from these other two books, though.  I don’t think he has the whole picture regarding a couple of things.  And then listening to President Bush’s speech last night and hearing him talk about things that I have just been reading about was actually interesting and frustrating at the same time.  I just don’t know if the people in our government are really that dumb, or just that blatantly dishonest.  The sad thing is that the majority of people are in a position like the ostrich with its head in the sand.  They don’t really know what is going on, and they are willing to believe what the people who have their hand in the cookie jar are saying, just because they are a) unwilling to do the research to figure out what is really going on or b) are unwilling to deal with the consequences that are inevitably coming yet and like to hear the government and Wall Street tell us that X or Y will save us from what is coming.  Hhmmmmmm…. doesn’t really seem to be working.  All I can think is that I really can not understand why anyone would want to be running for president right now.  Oh.  Wait.  The democrats will get more opportunities to make our country even more socialistic than FDR succeeded in doing.  Not that the republicans seem to be doing any better with what has happened so far. 

*SIGH*  I could go on and on about this.  Just ask my husband, lol.  And I don’t know if my chidren have ever seen me yell at the TV before.  They might have.  I do have a tendency to forget that the politicians can’t hear me from my living room. 

I would highly recommend all three of the books I have read/am reading.  Next on my list is Conquer the Crash by Robert R. Prechter Jr. and Peddling Prosperity by Paul Krugman.  I just wish I had studied all of this years ago.

Stand for Something.

Sweet Neighbor

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Today I had someone ring my doorbell.  It was one of my neighbors that I hadn’t met yet.  She told me she had noticed I was pregnant, and that she had 7 children herself, and her sister had 13!  Then she gave me a hug and told me she wanted to throw me a baby shower, so I am supposed to make a list of the things I need and send it over.  I am so surprised!  Normally people aren’t thinking of baby showers past the first one or two kids.  My friends and I always do mother blessings or baby showers for each baby because we love to celebrate each addition and let the mom know that she is supported and her new baby is just as special to us as any she had before.  But I really was not expecting something like this.  Especially from a neighbor I hadn’t even met yet!  She asked me about diapers and I just thought “Oh, Yes!  I need those!”  lol.  What a sweet lady.

Stand for Something.

Steps Forward and Back

Sunday, September 14th, 2008

I have had a name for a few months that just seems to click for this baby.  I talked to Sione about it and I couldn’t tell if he really didn’t like it or if he was teasing me.  The man has quite the dry sense of humor.  Normally this isn’t a big deal, and I seem to know when he is teasing me.  With something as big as if he does or does not like the name for one of our children, however, I choose to err on the side of caution and take him at his word.  So after waiting through name propositions like Seven, he has finally given me the go-ahead for the name that seems right to me.  Faith Ashby.  When we were looking at girl names for Losahina we both really liked Losahina and Faith.  We obviously chose Losahina then, but Faith has stuck in my mind.  With everything that has been happening this last year that has required what seem to us leaps of faith it seems even that much more appropriate at this time.  Ashby is my Dad’s Mom’s maiden name.  I have come to think of her more lately as I have looked through a book she wrote called A Stitch In Time about sewing and frugality.  As a mom of 11 children she knew what she was talking about.  :) 

Losahina and Tevita were both doing REALLY well with toilet training…. that is until our visit with family and friends in Salt Lake was drawing to a close.  Now we are starting at square one in some ways.  Tevita isn’t doing too badly, but he has started having a few accidents.  Losahina has seemed to have the biggest setback.  I had also been so excited because they were both staying dry at night.  Now neither of them are.  *sigh*  Hopefully they will get back on board quickly.  I was so happy at how well it was going.  Really it isn’t too bad, and I am still grateful for how well it has gone.

I have been really happy with how well our devotional and kidschool are going.  I am trying to make sure we are well established in our routines and schedules so when Faith joins us it will be easier to keep the basics going at least, and also so I don’t feel too guilty about any break we do take.

Sione has been doing a modified version of the One Day Diet.  He is doing really well with it.  He has lost nearly 50 lbs in the past few months.  I am so proud of him, and I am glad.  I have been a little worried about his health, although he likes to point out that Tongans are built to be bigger.  LOL. 

Stand for Something.