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amberskyfire: (fairy)
I know I haven't been here in years. And probably nobody is on here anymore. That's fine. I've been having a hard time and have been thinking that maybe this is a good place to write things down. Not things for other people to read, really. Just a place to write down feelings and issues where my husband won't be able to find them. And this is still here and it's all my own. It's like a secret place. Or maybe I will make a new page where there is no one who knows me in real life since several people followed me over to FB from here.
amberskyfire: (Tasha Tudor)
Until 12/31/10, you can get $2.00 off of a one-year print subscription for Mothering Magazine by entering code AMAM10.

You will also get $100 in coupons and a FREE 1-year subscription to the digital version which you can keep or give to a friend. I gave mine as a gift.

The website says that a 1-year subscription is $22.95, but when I used the above coupon, my subscription price was bumped down to only $17.95.

Want to save even more? Get a digital subscription! It's just like the magazine, only the articles and URLs are actually linked right on the page which is mighty nice! Best of all, the price is stupendous at only $4.95 for a year and $9.90 for two years. If I understand correctly, you will also get a free digital subscription to give as a gift.
amberskyfire: (Tasha Tudor)
There is a recall on many McNeil children's medicines including Tylenol, Motrin, Benadryl, and Zyrtec.

Link is here:


amberskyfire: (poop)
Oi, could someone please change my baby back into a newborn for just a week. Toddlers are so much work! I miss having a little tiny baby who just lays there. I used to just lay on the couch with her on my chest and eat and watch movies. Ah, those were the best times. Little babies are so simple and have so few demands. They just want to eat and pee. Eat and pee. Sleep, eat, poo, then more pee. *sigh*

Now it's "Mama, play with me, Mama, fix this, Mama, make me cereal, Mama, do it like this, Mama, want to watch ballet video, Mama, play with me, Mama, want to go outside, Mama, want want want DO DO DO!"

Can I has vacation now, please?
amberskyfire: (kiss!)
A: Das MY piggy.
M: Oh, and what is your piggy's name?
A: Aryquin
M: And what does your piggy say?
A: *snort snort*
M: And what color is your piggy?
M: And what does your piggy eat?
A: Christmas trees
M: Oh? And what does your piggy drink?
A: Water fountain.
M: And where does your piggy sleep?
A: Bed.
M: And where does your piggy take a bath?
A: Tub.
M: And where does your piggy live?
A: Gramma's house.
amberskyfire: (fairy)
I didn't sleep last night. I don't know why. I went to bed and lay there until four thirty in the morning when I finally fell asleep. I wasn't tired at all. Not even the slightest little bit. I got up and took some homeopathic chamomile about an hour before I finally passed out. I just don't know what was wrong with me. It was like I was on speed or something because my brain was going ninety miles a minute. I kept having all of these ideas and remembering things I had to do and it was all way too much for me to keep up with. I kept trying to make my brain be quiet, to stop thinking so I could sleep, but I couldn't stop it. It was like standing in front of a subway train with it rushing past my face and all the windows flying by loud and too fast.

I wasn't at all tired today, even though I didn't sleep in and I only had maybe three hours of sleep, but my brain was in a fog. I couldn't do anything right. I couldn't understand things I was reading. I typed up a letter to family about why I didn't want plastic toys for Aryquin for Christmas and then when I posted it, some helpful people pointed out to me that it was entirely psychotic. I took a break, had a shower, played with Aryquin and came back.

And they were right. It was the most effed up psychotic thing I have ever read. It was the worst crap I have ever written in my life. It hardly made sense and everything was just everywhere. I could hardly believe I'd even written it. To my sleep-deprived brain, it had looked WONDERFUL. It had looked like the best writing ever.

What a fucking moron. I hope I sleep tonight. What is up with me?
amberskyfire: (Tasha Tudor)
Can you tell I'm feeling angsty today?

Never Violence

By Astrid Lindgren
Reprinted from Father Times, Spring 1995, Volume 3, Issue 4. Astrid Lindgren is author of Pippi Longstocking.

Above all, I believe that there should never be any violence. In 1978 I received a peace prize in West Germany for my books, and I gave an accepting speech that I called just that: "Never Violence." And in that speech I told a story from my own experience.

When I was about 20 years old, I met an old pastor's wife who told me that when she was young and had her first child, she didn't believe in striking children, although spanking kids with a switch pulled from a tree was standard punishment at the time. But one day when her son was four or five, he did something that she felt warranted a spanking - the first of his life. And she told him that he would have to go outside and find a switch for her to hit him with. The boy was gone a long time. And when he came back in, he was crying. He said to her, "Mama, I couldn't find a switch, but here's a rock that you can throw at me."

All of a sudden the mother understood how the situation felt from the child's point of view: that if my mother wants to hurt me, then it makes no difference what she does it with; she might as well do it with a stone. And the mother took the boy onto her lap and they both cried. Then she laid the rock on a shelf in the kitchen to remind herself forever: never violence. And that is something I think everyone should keep in mind. Because violence begins in the nursery— one can raise children into violence.

Spanking Lowers Children's IQ:

Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment, & Trauma
LA Times
The Examiner

Why Spanking Doesn't Work:
Ask Dr. Sears
Ask Mr. Dad
The Parenting Doctor

In a Nutshell:

- Spanking teaches children that it is okay to hit others.
- Spanking teaches children to use force against those smaller than them.
- Spanking teaches children that it is appropriate to use violence to get your own way.
- Teaching a child to hit does not teach them the resources to solve problems in a non-violent way.
- Spanking, like all abuse, is cyclical. If you teach it to your children, they will teach it to theirs.
- Girls who are spanked are more likely to choose abusive relationships as an adult.
- Spanking your child makes them more likely to severely abuse their own children
- Teaches children that what they want, what they think, and how they feel is worthless and does not matter.
- Spanking and hitting is humiliating to a child.
- Spanking sets you up for disaster in the future. You will have no way to control your children when they are too old to be spanked and years of being hit will make them have no respect for you. Parents who hit their children cannot find ways to control older children and teenagers who have always been hit rather than being taught morals.
- Spanking breaks down all trust in the parent-child relationship so that the child will distance him/herself from the parents when they are older. It is almost impossible to effectively communicate with an older child who has pushed a parent out. A child who has not been hit does not fear the parent and so feels comfortable sharing how they feel and will listen better to the advice of the adult. They do not keep things secret for fear of being punished.
-Physical punishment creates violent tendencies in children and sometimes the psychological damage is irreversible.

"But my parents spanked me and I'm fine."
No, you are not fine. Your parents hit you when you were little and they taught you that it's okay to hit little children, too.

"But it works. Look, I hit him/her and she/he stops and does what I say."
Spanking does not work. Using fear and pain to control a child works in the short-term, but not in the long term. It does not teach a child how to behave based on morals or empathy. It teaches them to avoid a behavior only at times when they are most likely to get caught and receive physical punishment from the parent.

"Spanking makes a child think about what they did."
No. Spanking NEVER makes a child think about what they did. If you think that, you obviously don't remember being a child. Punishment in general does not make a child sorry for what they did. It makes them sorry they got caught. After punishment, a child NEVER sits and thinks "wow, what I did was really wrong. I love my mommy and next time I'll do the right thing because I want to make her happy." No. A child who has been hit or punished feels resentment toward the parent: "I HATE MOMMY! I hate you! I hate you!" They feel anger and they feel violent because violence has been used against them. Children who are hit fear their parents and feel anger toward them and seek out retribution. They do not feel respect.

"But some children NEED to be hit."
Seriously. Get help.

"I'm the parent. My child needs to do what I say and when I say it."
Teaching your child that they have no rights will, like with ANY human being, even an adult, cause them to push back. Children have the same feelings, desires, and emotions as an adult. Really, the only difference is that they are smaller and easy to push around. But think about it; do you have to be hit in order to do what you are supposed to do? Why do you do the right thing? In your family, do you always do what your husband tells you to? Your wife? Relationships are a two-way street. You give some, you take some. Would it be okay if your husband smacked you around? Should it be okay for a husband to hit his wife if she doesn't do what he wants her to do immediately? Why is it okay for an adult to hit a child, but not okay for an adult to hit another adult?

"How do I discipline my child without hitting him/her?"
Gentle discipline works and it works in both the short-term and the long-term. Just the same way that you make decisions for yourself because you are inherently good, guiding a child helps teach them to also make good decisions for themselves because they are also inherently good. No child is born "bad." They are made that way by those who care for them. It should not take an entire lifetime for a child to learn to behave. It is something that can be instilled in them from their earliest days.

To learn how to effectively discipline your child, see:
Mothering.com - get advice from other parents!
La Leche League - what is gentle discipline.
Gentle Christian Mothers
Gentle Parenting

Gentle discipline works. Spanking does not. Please, let's work together to end the cycle of violence and abuse.
amberskyfire: (obama)

If you are reading this right now, you have more luxury than someone in Iran could ever hope for right now. If you are watching TV or a video on youtube, updating your status on Facebook, Tweeting, or even texting your friend, you are lucky. If you are safe in your home, and were able to sleep last night without the sounds of screaming from the rooftops, you need to know and understand what is happening to people just like you in Iran right now.

They are not the enemy. They are a people whose election has been stolen. For the first time in a long time, a voice for change struck the youth of Iran, just as it did for many people in the United States only seven months ago. Hossein Mousavi gained the support of millions of people in Iran as a Presidential candidate. He stands for progressiveness. He supports good relations with the West, and the rest of the world. He is supported with fervor as he challenges the oppressive regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

On Friday, millions of people waited for hours in line to vote in Iran's Presidential election. Later that night, as votes came in, Mousavi was alerted that he was winning by a two-thirds margin. Then there was a change. Suddenly, it was Ahmadinejad who had 68% of the vote - in areas which have been firmly against his political party, he overwhelmingly won. Within three hours, millions of votes were supposedly counted - the victor was Ahmadinejad. Immediately fraud was suspected - there was no way he could have won by this great a margin with such oppposition. Since then, reports have been coming in of burned ballots, or in some cases numbers being given without any being counted at all. None of this is confirmed, but what happened next seems to do the trick.

The people of Iran took the streets and rooftops. They shout "Death to the dictator" and "Allah o akbar." They join together to protest. Peacefully. The police attack some, but they stay strong. Riots happen, and the shouting continues all night. Text messaging was disabled, as was satellite, and websites which can spread information such as Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, and the BBC are blocked in the country. At five in the morning, Arabic speaking soldiers (the people of Iran speak Farsi) stormed a university in the capital city of Tehran. While sleeping in their dormitories, five students were killed. Others were wounded. These soldiers are thought to have been brought in by Ahmadinejad from Lebanon. Today, 192 of the university's faculty have resigned in protest.

Mousavi requested that the government allow a peaceful rally to occur this morning - the request was denied. Many thought that it would not happen. Nevertheless, first a few thousand people showed up in the streets of Tehran. At this point, it is estimated that 1 to 2 million people were there. Mousavi spoke on the top of a car. The police stood by. For a few hours, everything was peaceful. Right now, the same cannot be said. Reports of injuries, shootings, and killings are flooding the internet. Twitter has been an invaluable source - those in Iran who still know how to access it are updating regularly with picture evidence. People are being brutally beaten. Tonight will be another night without rest for so many in Iran no older than I am. Tonight there is a Green Revolution.

For more information:
here and here
Here - near constant updates
Here - ONTD_political live post
@StopAhmadi, @IranElection09, @persiankiwi, @NextRevolution, @Change_for_Iran

دنیارابگوییدچطورآنهاانتخاباتمان دزدیده اند
Tell the world how they have stolen our election

- original post by [personal profile] one_hoopy_frood

Plese repost - repost code is here.
amberskyfire: (fairy)
I just wanted to pimp this guy's artwork. I just now saw this on the front page of Etsy and OMG, I am SO IN LOVE with his artwork! I'd love to have a couple of his prints hanging in my house! You've got to see this listing.

amberskyfire: (Default)
Sorry if you are seeing this on your F-list yet AGAIN. I posted it a couple of places. If you are interested in making this doll I made for my daughter's first birthday, check out the instructions I just put up over on my other blog: Doing Without.


May. 9th, 2009 05:24 pm
amberskyfire: (fail)
Man. People are just shitty.

I mean, REALLY shitty.

What's up with all of the "I'm not happy and I see that you are, so I'm going to make you unhappy by snarking at you online" crap? Don't people have anything better to do? Seriously? Why do they have to try to make others feel as miserable as they are. It makes me so sad that their lives are so messed up. What must their parents have done to them when they were little to make them turn out that way?

Prop. 8

Mar. 6th, 2009 10:05 am
amberskyfire: (obama)
I cannot believe this whole Proposition 8 thing is even an issue. Yes, I understand that there are lots of crazy, hateful, psychotic Christian conservatives who have an opinion. I get that. They can have their opinion. They can picket, they can throw food at gay people. Hell, they can even burn effigies of gay people in the streets for all I care. Everyone's got a right to their opinion.

What I don't get is WHY IT'S EVEN AN ISSUE! I don't care if you think gay marriage is beautiful or completely abhorrent, Prop. 8 is illegal. It's unconstitutional. You can't tell someone that they have no right to a civil liberty because they are attracted to someone of the same sex. What's next, telling black people that they can't use the "whites only" water fountain? Telling Hispanic Americans that they are not allowed to breed?

Since when do people get the right to vote on an issue where a religious belief is made into a law - a law that takes away the basic human rights of a minority. WHY is it being voted on? This shouldn't even be being voted on. It's as simple as that.

WHY IS THIS EVEN A FREAKING ISSUE, PEOPLE?! Are we going back in time or something?

And to you Christians who are so unbelievably NON-Christian, maybe you need to go read the freaking Bible. Jesus died for your sins, morons. That means everyone is forgiven if they believe in Christ. That renders the rules of the Old Testament null and void. That was Jesus' purpose. And if that's not good enough for you, maybe you should highlight the part where God said that only he has the right to judge and our only business is to love our neighbor and treat him the way we would want to be treated. Didn't Jesus say "let he who is without sin cast the first stone?" Maybe we should take away your right to be married because you drink alcohol or eat pork on Friday.

Hell, I'm PAGAN and I'm more Christian than most "Christians."

/ rant.
amberskyfire: (Default)
People have been asking me a lot for ideas on how to save money since we live on so little. I decided to start a separate journal detailing how I live my life while spending little or no money at all. If anyone is interested in following along for tips and resources, it's located here:

[livejournal.com profile] doingwithout 

It's a slow-going process and I'm constantly updating. Some of the articles I write link to my Associated Content articles, so I'm hoping that keeping this new journal will help make a little money to put some more food on the table before this little one is eating non-boobie food. It's a view-only community. I am not taking members at this time.

Enjoy, my loves!

amberskyfire: (mermaid)

I made this last night and it's pretty damn good. It's a little more moist than cake, sort of like a banana bread.

Cheddar and Apple Bread
1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 apples peeled and chopped
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
1/2 cup cheddar cheese - grated (1/2 cup before grating or 1 cup if it's already grated)
2 cups flour
1teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside
3. In mixing bowl, beat melted butter and sugar until light
4. Beat in eggs one at a time
5. Stir in apples, walnuts, and cheddar
6. Slowly add and stir in dry mix. 
7. Pour into greased 9x5x3" loaf pan
8. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 50 minutes (loaf will start to brown slightly on the top. 

And if anyone wants to try it, I think maybe adding about 1/4 cup chopped onions would taste terrific as well!

amberskyfire: (fail)
Dear people on the internets,

If I see someone type "all the sudden" ONE MORE TIME I am going to go freaking postal. 

It's "all of a sudden."


What frikking country did you all learn English in?! 

/ rant
amberskyfire: (Default)
I'm one of those people who looks at the title of a recipe and then walks off and starts randomly mixing things together into my version of what I imagine that recipe to be. Oi, I make the best banana bread ever that way! Anyway, here's the baked potato soup I made a few days ago. It lasted three or four days for dinner for both of us. I didn't get it quite right at first, so the next day, I reheated it and added a few ingredients and now it's perfect!

Amber's Baked Potato Soup

3 large russet potatoes - peeled and chopped
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar
1/2 small tub sour cream
1 tbsp butter (optional)
1 can chicken broth
1/4 cup diced green onion or chives
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp garlic salt or 1/2 tsp regular salt
chopped bacon bits (optional)

Place potatoes in large pot and pour in chicken broth. Add enough water to cover potatoes and boil until soft. Blend potatoes in until they form a creamy soup. Add all ingredients and stew for 10 minutes. Serve with freshly baked bread. Makes 6 large servings or 8 regular servings.