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  1. clueliss
    Latest Entry

    By clueliss,

    I posted this in the coloring club (or whatever it's called).  But I'm conducting a bit of an experiment since I've managed to find my way to where I can post a blog entry.  (it doesn't appear as an option now under Create - well it does but it comes up blank)

    This is my most recent project.  I've got a couple of smudges that make me batty when I see them.  Otherwise, I've very happy with how this turned out. IMG_20190317_064139.jpg.a2378d5049d788552f19f741c3dbfaab.jpg 

     

  2. Trying to keep tabs on multiple families isn't the easiest task!

    Bob knows that red roses are a solid romantic gesture.

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    "Bethany, you are such a beautiful, Godly young woman..."

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    "... will you do me the honour of becoming my wife?"

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    Front hugs a go-go!!

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    Popping back over to the mothership, where little Hannah had aged up. I changed her outfit.

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    Then we go to Andrew's house. Time for the twins to age up!

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    Here's Molly! 

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    And here's little Morgan on the xylophone! This is also the 800th screenshot in my album. 

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    This top and this skirt are the most modest options I have for formal/bridal wear. I'm guessing that all the females will be wearing this combination, or similar. You may be able to notice the subtle floral decoration I added for Bethany's outfit. I could go for a slightly shorter skirt (still covering those *sinful* knees), or else something that doesn't cover the shoulders. I wish I could create my own CC sometimes, but I don't have those sorts of skills, so I have to make do with what I have.

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    Hand-holding!

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    It's happening! Wedding #2 for the Taylor offspring!

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    I didn't capture the kiss that occurs as part of the wedding vows action. But just-married-that-second Sims, particularly fundie ones, don't need an excuse!!

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    I couldn't spot Diana in the immediate congregation, and then, searching the lot, I found her.

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    Cake time!

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    Slow dancing in a bedroom. This was where Bob slept when they weren't married; it'll probably be a kids' room in the future.

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    That's two weddings down and six more to go. Of course, the two youngest are only toddlers. 

     

     

     

  3. We've had quite the adventures the last few weeks.  Roweenie Kitty has been visiting for a while, the daughter's complex caught on to their dog so she snuck the kitten out just in time.  (They need to pay all their pet deposits)  

    Two weeks ago the older kitties were sick, I thought Princess had caught mange from somewhere outside but it turned out to be just a case of fleas and some serious scratching.  Some meds and and a good bath got her fixed up.  While she was itching I noticed her sneezing a bit as well.  Not long after, The Old Man caught her cold and Thor soon followed.  Old Tex being...well...old, I sent him to the vet.  Unfortunately he didn't come home.  His age had gotten the better of him and we all agreed to let him go peacefully.  I need to go pick up his ashes.  His last few days were spent laying in the sunbeams with his buddy.

    Thor kitty recovered with some antibiotics and some steam therapy.  He and the Princess were a bit down for a few days, they knew someone was missing.  Then Ro Ro came to visit and play.  She seemed to pull everyone out of the funk.  I noticed her sneezing a bit yesterday so I made sure to give her some vitamins and keep her little nose clean.  Got meds on standby just in case.  

    We have a new farm we'll be fixing up just in time for spring.  The babies will have a different house to explore and enjoy.  I do hope they'll like it.

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  4. Last week we were invited to a 50th birthday party in another suburb, maybe 20/25 minutes to drive. The party started at 7pm and lasted until after midnight. I drove my Mum and it went really great. I reverse parked like a pro! 😉 On our way back there were literally no cars on the roads. I was so much fun driving around town alone. I did some roundabouts twice and we had music on. It was better than the party!!! 😂 There was also a pretty foggy part outside of the town, almost no visibility. Took me a second to find the fog light (I know were they are, but finding them without looking for the first time was a bit difficult). It felt so great being able to drive my Mum.

    I also gave my mum her first lessons in an automatic car. She is only used to driving manual cars and has never driven an automatic. She is doing great, her left food is no problem at all, but she always wants to shift with her hand. So I have to remind her constantly to have her hands on the steering wheel.

    Driving alone still isn't really happening. I feel safer with my mum next to me. Totally crazy, because she never says something. I don't need her help at all. I need to face my fears a bit more and drive alone. Also I don't drive on the motorway and I don't plan to change that. I'd rather drive longer on the other roads. Driving on the motorway isn't the problem, but pulling into it. Maybe I will practice when there is very little traffic, but due to the area here, there is always traffic on the motorway.

    It still feels unreal to drive. I wonder when that will change.

  5. Finding Fran

    fransalley
    Latest Entry

    My small group is working their way through the book Forgotten God by Francis Chan, which is about how we Christians tend to neglect the Holy Spirit.  We watched a video this past week that's with the study, and Chan told the story about a church he occasionally visits in Maui.  

    He ran into a woman that was acquainted with the pastor who said, next time you visit there, tell him I said hi.

    So he did.  The pastor asked, did she tell you how we met?  

    His story was that he'd felt a prompting, which he attributed to the Holy Spirit, to go talk to a woman at the end of a pier.  

    I guessed the punch line before he even said it:  he ended up saving her from suicide.

    It could be that I'm not being fair here, because I don't know the people involved and probably will never meet them.  It could very easily be that the Holy Spirit DID prompt the guy to go talk to the woman and she ended up not killing herself as a result.  

    But in a discussion with my husband on the way home, I told him, "My question is, did the event even happen?"

    It just sounds too neat, with too many loose ends tied up too neatly.  

    I'm finding myself questioning a lot of "preacher's stories" lately.  I wonder if we're really being told the truth about something that happened, or if it's just a packaged story that's meant to make God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit look good (when really, they don't need our help at all!)  

    On the flip side, I can tell you of a baptism that happened a couple of weekends ago, because the baptism was videoed.  It happened down at the Gulf during a youth group retreat from my church.  A young man with autism was baptized, and the reason I knew he had autism was because I know the young man.  When he was asked if he was ready to be baptized, he said, "Oh, yeah!"  I know some of his family's story and I was able to congratulate him when I saw him in person.

    If that story were told and someone like me said they didn't believe it, that would be hurtful.  

    I fear my experiences in an abusive church and my observations of abuses in the evangelical world have turned me into a total cynic.

  6. Maggie Mae
    Latest Entry

    By Maggie Mae,

    Sundays

    I remember reading about Sundays in Farmer Boy! They sounded awful and boring. 

    Regardless, Laura and Mary also find Sundays to be long, since they have to stay inside and be quiet. They get to take baths on Saturday night, which is nice for them. In the winter, Pa and Ma (the text says Pa, but let's just be historically accurate) melt snow for bath water. They have a screen made out of a  blanket hung over two chairs. Laura goes first, then Mary, then Pa has to empty and refill the bath tub for Ma, then Pa. I guess Carrie doesn't have to be clean on Sundays? Or maybe Carries gets bathed as needed. 

    On Sundays, they sit quietly and listen to stories. 

    Spoiler

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    Laura likes to look at the pictures in the Bible, and learns that Adam didn't have clothes to wear on Sundays. Laura wishes she had nothing to wear but skins. Eventually she acts up and instead of getting  a spanking, she gets a story from Pa. 

    Grandpa's Sled and the Pig 

    Pa's story is about Grandpa and how Sundays used to begin on Saturday night, and no one was allowed to work or play. Everything was solemn.  I did some independant research trying to figure out what religion Grandpa was but it's not really known. Maybe if I had an Ancestry.com account, i'd be able to figure out where and when they came to the states and figure it out from there. But it's just generic Christianity. Laura ends up at a Congregational Church, which is interesting to me for personal reasons. 

    Old Timey Grandpa Christian rules include going to bed on Saturday night immediately after the after-dinner prayer, sitting up straight, walking to Church (Which also led me to just delete a long, judgmental story about my Conservative Jewish college teammate) and a prohibition on smiling. I thought prayer and Jesus was supposed to bring comfort and joy? NO SMILING! (Also no working, so no horses or cooking. Cold food only.) After dinner on Sundays, they sat in a row on a bench, studying their catechism until Sunday was over. 

    Grandpa's house was on a hill, so they liked to sled. Grandpa and his brothers made a new sled. They had 2-3 hours on Saturday to play. But their father kept them longer on Saturday and they missed their chance due to chores. So during church, they thought about the sled. Then at dinner, they thought about the sled. Eventually, they hear their father snoring and they sneak out to try out the sled. Just once. Be back before he wakes up. (We've all heard this story!) The sled goes faster and faster and I just realized that there was no mention of a mother :(. The sled speeds out of control and they go right under a pig, which sits on James (one of the brothers). The three boys and the squealing pig sled past the house, where the father (this would be Charles' Grandfather) is watching them from the doorway. The pig runs off without goring anyone, the sled gets put away, and the boys go back to sitting and studying. After Sundown, the father takes them out to the woodshed and "tanned their jackets" which I am going to say is a euphemism for "beat them with a stick or some plumbing line." 

    Laura asks if little girls had to be good like that, and Pa said it was harder for little girls, because they were never allowed to sled.  They could only stay in and stitch. 

    Much like Laura (and Arya Stark), I'm very happy to not be restricted to that. Pa brings out his fiddle and plays. Laura falls asleep to the sound, then wakes up and Pa says it's her birthday and she needs a spanking. She gets six. (Soft, not hard) She's actually five, the last one was to "grow on." I wonder how long he does this. It's weird. 

    Laura is given a stick person to keep Charlotte company. Ma has five cakes for her, one for each year. Mary made her a dress. (Jesus, Mary's like, what, 7? I still couldn't make someone a wearable dress.) Although when I was 7, I did teach myself how to read music and play piano on a little keyboard, which convinced my dad that I needed to go outside more. Pa doesn't buy or make Laura anything, he just plays a song for her. 

    It's pop goes the weasel. They list out the lyrics and the girls are supposed to look for the weasel and they can't find it and I'm sure this would be fun to read to a kid. 

    ---

    So thinking about putting this into a historical context, this was taking place sometime around 1870; under Grant's administration. After the Civil War. Wisconsin has been a state for maybe 30 years, there is a university in Madison. The economy is centered around logging and brewing. This little family is just homesteading. There are probably miners and trappers and other resource type people.  It seems so lonely to be so far away from town. I know when I was around Laura's age, I was well aware of various states and countries and the space program,  my neighbors, different churches, towns, candy stores. 

     

  7. Welcome back to 66 Goodbook Avenue! SO much happened in Year 16/2025, that this year was naturally a bit slower - at least for the Edens. 

    Adam and Eva have now turned 35, which means their Try For A Baby % success rate has gone down to 50% per day (4 months Sim Time) vs the former 70%. However, Adam and Eva can't keep their hands off each other

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    so naturally Blessing #15 (!!!!!!!1!!!1!!) was on its way soon enough (and how)! 

    Which was really a shame, as things at the Edens were falling apart. Sure, Genesis was still diligent about her musical studies and toddler care, and the eldest two boys were learning home repair and now mowing lawns for extra cash, but the younger kids were out of control. Staying up all hours, making messes all over the place, and even just wandering off. 

    Below, see Ruth just by herself, sad, in the middle of a forlorn park.

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    And Ruth wasn't the only one who wasn't Safe At Home. 

    Oh Adam what have we here?

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    He decided he would also take himself to a park, and enjoy a hot dog with a short-skirt and makeup-wearing hussy.

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    Usually that much eyeliner is associated with Plexus shills and an RV enshrouded in a cloud of hairspray, but this time Adam found himself in a flirty conversation with a married woman. 

    Too bad his daughter Ruth had to show up and ruin it all.

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    Adam went home, embarrassed, to enjoy his perfect, pure, Christ-like marriage. Let's see if he can stay on the straight and narrow from now on.

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    Other notable events include Chronicles, the fiesty 11th kid born on Halloween, aging into an outgoing and fiesty child. You go girl!

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    At the end of the year, the TWINS Esther and Nehemiah aged up as well. 745817012_01-27-19_5-10-27PM.thumb.png.1c00abce9f702f847249304c3d25c588.png

    And just like that, the house is full of toddlers again.

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    Also, there is now officially no more room in either the boys or girls rooms for more beds, and the nursery is full up too. Ezra ages up in two months and there's another baby on the way, so who knows what the Edens will do! 

     

    Across the neighborhood, the Johnsons are having a much more sedate time. Romano turned 5 and started Kindergarten at a private Christian school. He's so cute in his uniform!435976414_01-24-19_7-22-01PM.thumb.png.7b4966808f902792685793da1063e357.png

    On the weekends and before school, Romano does his homework while Elsie practices her cooking and reads about mixology. She still feels uncomfortable with the idea of alcohol, but she has to be able to describe drink options for her catering clients, and so she studies diligently.

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    They have a very picturesque life now, but it's been quiet. A little too quiet. Elsie is home alone in the mornings after Romano has left for school and before her shift starts, so she and Romano got a kitty! Romano thought it was going to be hard to pick out just one cat. But then he met Nacho. Nacho, with a cheese name just like him! It was love at first whisker touch.

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    Elsie has started to consider putting herself out into the dating world again, but for now, she has a happy family and her big empty house is starting to be filled. Yay Elsie! We are all so happy for you!

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    Until next time, Edens out! (and Nacho, get off those counters!)

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  8. Casual Gaming Adventures

    • 1
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    Recent Entries

    Hi guys! This is my first blog post and I hope some of you will find this content intriguing. Apologies in advance for poor grammar - hopefully I get better with time. The two games I'm considering playing are vastly different from one another. Harvest Moon (recently renamed Story of Seasons) is a series of life and farm simulation games with the main objective of each game being to rebuild a farm and/or town and to befriend the townspeople. Corpse Party is a horror adventure RPG - decidedly different from Harvest Moon. More about their plots and origins below:

    Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town:

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    Originally released in 2003Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town (henceforth referred to as MFoMT) is the third Story of Seasons game that focuses on the female perspective. 

    The player is sitting alone in her apartment, thinking about how tired she is of her life in the city. She wants something new, and as she's looking in the newspaper, she sees an advertisement in the newspaper about a farm for sale.

    She decides to purchase the farm, and goes there to see it. Upon arriving, she meets with the mayor, Thomas, who is surprised to see that somebody has replied to the advertisement. Although the farm needs a lot of work, Thomas says that the people of Mineral Town are desperate for a person to revive the farm. The player decides to live on the farm, and the game then begins.

    source: fandom.wikia

    Corpse Party:

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    Originally released in 1996, the plot of Corpse Party concerns a group of Japanese high school students who, after celebrating their school's culture festival, are telling ghost stories when a sudden earthquake transports them to a dilapidated schoolhouse in an alternative dimension that is haunted by the ghosts of people who have been trapped there. The main playable character is Satoshi Mochida, a kindhearted high school student who is teased by his classmates for his cowardly nature. Three of the other characters are students from Satoshi's class: Naomi Nakashima, Satoshi's childhood friend; Yoshiki Kishinuma, an intimidating yet good-natured student; and Ayumi Shinozaki, the class representative. Rounding out the group is Yuka Mochida, Satoshi's younger sister. 

    The game's story is split into five chapters, each focusing on different characters and featuring multiple endings that are achieved based on the player's in-game decisions: a "True Ending" required for the game's progression; and several "Wrong Endings" that are unlocked when the player performs events irrelevant to the main storyline. Characters also possess hit points (HP), which measure how much damage they can take before dying, in some instances leading to a wrong ending. As players progress through the game, they will unlock ten optional "Extra Chapters", vignettes that focus on the game's side characters and expand the storyline.

    source: wikipedia.org

    If I post about Corpse Party, I will include a NSFW warning, trigger warnings, and keep everything under spoilers, as it's quite... disturbing.

     

    Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to nor do I intend to advertise Story of Seasons, Harvest Moon, Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town, Corpse Party, Nintendo, or Natsume.

     

  9. Confetti and Funfetti

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    cascarones
    Latest Entry

    I mentioned in one of the threads that I'd attended a charity dinner where JK was speaking and had a theory that I wound up defending in a Tumblr challenge a few years back. 

    My theory is that Molly Weasley had her own Deathly Hallows in the final battle. 

    While viewed as a children’s story, or a physical quest, there was much more to the Deathly Hallows than that, the mastery of death could lie not just in objects, but in the right mix of people. The theory, hotly debated amongst vigilant believers, was in current contest as those three Hallows were united as they dueled against Bellatrix Lestrange.

    There was Luna, the Resurrection Stone, the girl who fed thestrals, missed a mother and danced in and out of everyone else’s version of reality. The girl whose haunting alternate ways so often helped others get back to themselves when feeling lost or alone asking nothing in return, helping them resurrect who they were when they vulnerable.

    There was Hermione, the Invisibility Cloak that had shielded others so many times, often invisible and unthanked in her constant support of everyone. The cloak’s true gift lay in the ability to shield others, not just a single wearer and never tired out. For Hermione had never left Harry’s side, had helped Hagrid for ages on his case for Buckbeak, had knit hat after hat for house elf rights, had been the constant plan maker to hide them from trouble. The girl who was tortured to shield others.

    There was Ginny, the Elder Wand. The girl who stood toe to toe with Voldemort in a very private battle for months on end and ensured the only causality would be herself. If it is assumed the castle wasn’t doused with Flelix Feliciats, then Ginny was actively thwarting the giant, murderous creature she kept releasing while blacked out from killing.  Chamber opening, rebellion leading, unmastered Ginny who showed Tom Riddle having a thing was not the same as being able to use it.

    Their mistress was one Molly Weasley, who could selflessly possess the attributes. A daughter by blood, a daughter by heart from across the hill, a daughter to be. When faced with a depraved killer who had felled notable duelists, Molly could not be beat. The mother in her, the fresh grief she had might have been enough, but her Hallows ensured Bellatrix would never harm again.

  10. Oh gosh you guys!  She went to college, worked, and had been in love before meeting her husband - no wonder they quarrel.

    this is full of awesome.

    I just found the above amusing.  it actually pro-education even for women so progressive by Duggar standards.

     

  11. HerNameIsBuffy
    Latest Entry

    By HerNameIsBuffy,

    I want to preface this by saying I am kind of embarrassed that this is my third blog post here in a row and if other people don't start posting let my insecurity be on your heads.  :)

    Also - I am well aware that I'm FJ's Jill Duggar of food photography.  I'm terrible ... snark away, judgey people.

    I love cranberry-orange muffins and in company meetings I'd make sure they ordered one for me from Panera, but I prefer mine because they are slightly less sweet.

    The three bears reference is because I always bake these in 3 sizes:  Jumbo, regular*, and mini muffins.

    I have three kids and this is one of the few things they all love.  Sometimes they like the jumbo when grabbing one as a breakfast muffin on the way to work or school, we all love the regular, and mini-muffins are great when you want just a little bite without eating a whole one...because for me breaking into a whole muffin means I'll try to save for later but will finish it in short order so mini-muffins are perfect for those times you need a little taste of happiness without making a cupcake sized commitment.

    *regular being typical cupcake tins.

    This is my grandma's recipe.  I am sure she got it from Ocean Spray originally and tweaked it as it's similar.  This is for a double batch which will make a tray of each size (6 jumbo, 12 regular, and 24 mini.)  It is also good in loaf pans as cranberry bread, but muffins leave less crumbs on my counter.  Those of you who have neater families who wipe up their own counter crumbs may enjoy the bread, this recipe makes 2 loaf pans.

    Ingredients:

    • 4 cups flour
    • 2 cups sugar 
    • 1 tbsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1.5 cups orange juice
    • 4 tbsp melted butter (or Imperial margarine)
    • 2 eggs, well beaten
    • 4 cups fresh cranberries* halved or lightly pulsed once in food processor. 

    (*I do not use nuts in this recipe.  If you prefer nuts then cut the cranberries to 3 cups and add one cup of pecans)

    • Preheat oven to 350
    • Butter tins or line with cupcake liners...I'm a big fan of spray butter
    • Sift together dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.)
    • Mix together wet ingredients (OJ, butter, and eggs.)  Add melted butter to OJ before adding eggs so they don't scramble from the heat.
    • Pour wet ingredients into the dry and mix together by hand until just combined. Like with all such muffins do not over mix or you will get a very tough end product.
    • Fold in cranberries until evenly dispersed throughout the batter, again don't over-mix.  You don't want them whole, but not minced - big chunks are best.  I use my food processor on all 4 cups at once and pulse it once.

    Fill tins:

    • Regular - 1 ice cream scoop of batter per muffin.
    • Mini - 1 melon baller scoop per muffin
    • Jumbo - 1.5 - 1.75 ice cream scoops per muffin.
    • Loaves  - split the batter between 2 loaf

    Bake:

    • Regular - 25 minutes
    • Mini - 15 minutes
    • Jumbo - 30-35 minutes
    • Loaves - 50 minutes

    Done when tops are golden and butter knife comes out clean.

    (posting now but will upload pics from phone shortly.)

     

     

     

     

     

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  12. Maggie Mae
    Latest Entry

    Earlier today,  I was at work with my Google Play Music on shuffle, and a song from the OBC recording of Annie popped up randomly. Weird, but whatever. It was one of my favorite musicals as a kid and I still have a bit of a soft spot for spunky red-headed orphans (see also PIppi Longstocking, Sansa Stark) Of course I listened to the entire thing, including a bunch of early mixes I hadn't heard before. I grew up in the time of tapes, and we were poor for a good portion of my life. I still remember my first walkman and the first two tapes - Amy Grant, Heart in Motion, and Annie. So I've listened to it a few times. (Eventually I also got an Ace of Base tape, a Madonna Tape, and some early 90s R&B, before moving on to CDs). Anyway, so I'm listening to some early mixes, and it hits me. 

    I love musicals. 

    This wasn't a revelation. But I love musicals because they are political. Every single one I've ever loved is political at it's very core. Annie - wealth disparity, the New Deal, history, Hoovervilles, all wrapped up in a shiny happy broadway theme. Rent - AIDS crisis, HIV stigma, poverty, wealth disparity, journalism integrity, the American Dream. Newsies - history - newsboys strike, Christian Bale singing with Bill Pullman, poverty, journalism, wealth disparity. Cabaret -   rise of fascism while everyone parties. Les Mis, Chicago, even Mary Poppins has a liberal political message/history lesson in the middle of it. Sound of Music. Fiddler on the Roof.  West Side Story. South Pacific. Avenue Q. 

    Hamilton

    It appears that my favorite musicals (other than Mamma Mia, which we should just not talk about because I will fight you if you hate it) are the ones about living in poverty and doing the best you can with what you got. Not throwing away your shot, if you will. 

    Which brings me to a different memory. 

    I was talking to a guy on skype. He had lived next door to a very close friend, and he was dating a different "friend" of mine from high school. This was in the early 2000s and everyone was talking about the election, Bush V Gore, the Patriot Act, Ralph Nader, John McCain, and assorted topics. This guy was literally the first person who didn't even humor me with my "you should vote for x person in the local election." He was just "no. I don't vote." And even with his reasoning, I could not accept that. I still can not accept that. I don't understand that viewpoint, and I probably never will. It's been at least a decade since I talked to that guy, and I just don't get it. What do you do all day when you aren't political? What do you talk about? When you talk about "how to make the world better" what do you say? Is the number of people who hate politics at all correlated to people who hate musicals?

    Which brings me to how does anyone hate musicals? I know they exist and are out there but why? Is it like my hatred of country music? They hear it and have the same full body uncomfortable feeling? That's so sad. I feel like I owe so much of my knowledge of history to my love of Broadway, as these groundbreaking musicals inspired me to study things in history that I probably wouldn't know about otherwise. I wouldn't have read Allan Ginsburg's Howl without Rent. I wouldn't have read The Berlin Stories  without Cabaret.  Fictional characters set during war time give the audience a grasp of what it was like for those who aren't Generals or State Politicians. 

    BTW. If Cabaret comes to your city, go see it. It's topical. 

  13. I remember being about two years old (I have a long memory) and watching my dad plug in Christmas lights. That was probably the last year our family celebrated Christmas. 

    Both my parents grew up celebrating holidays like most of middle-class America, but as they began their slide into fundie-dom they started reading tracts and booklets about the evils of holidays. They believed that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween were evil throwbacks to paganism that had been perpetuated by the Catholics (who, of course, weren't "real Christians"). I'm linking here to something similar to the many booklets we had around the house: http://blowthetrumpet.org/AChristmasDefenseHowGodsPeopleJustifySin.htm

    This refusal to celebrate holidays set my family apart, even from the fundamentalist Christians we associated with, and definitely caused a lot of confusion when people casually asked us kids what we were doing for Christmas, and we told them we didn't "do Christmas." We got asked a lot if we were Jehovah's Witnesses, since that's who usually comes to mind as not celebrating holidays. Sometimes people asked if my parents were Christian, because the idea of a Christian not celebrating Christmas was so astonishing. 

    Birthdays were only grudgingly allowed: we normally had just a family gathering, similar to the Maxwells' descriptions of their birthday celebration. It was often pointed out that the only birthdays mentioned in the Bible were the birthdays of evil men (Pharaoh and Herod). Also it was seen as being likely to draw to much attention to one person and make them self-centered. 

    This story has a bit of a happy ending, at least for me. After I left home, I embraced holidays with a vengeance. Christmas was amazing, my children got Easter baskets from my in-laws, Halloween was a pure delight of dressing my kids and taking them trick-or-treating. Now that I've left Christianity, I still look forward to the holidays. Christmas/Yule/Winter Solstice--whatever it's called, it's a time of joy and giving and yummy food. Halloween--it's a joy to watch my children enjoy what I didn't, with no fear of "Satan" to hinder their steps. The cycle of the seasons is cause for celebration, even if "Easter" isn't really a thing for me. And I want my children to feel special on their birthdays: to know that they're important and valued.

    This rejection of holidays stemmed from anti-Catholic and anti-Pagan attitudes. It was promoted as being "God's way," but all the tracts reviled Catholics and Pagans, making it obvious that the real problem was with other people's belief systems. Of course, we were the ones with the "right" understanding of the Bible. As with everything else. 

    Nowadays, my parents still don't celebrate religious holidays, except for having or attending a Thanksgiving meal (apparently there's some justification in the Bible for "a day of thanks," don't ask me). They are free to do whatever they want on the holidays; meanwhile, at my house, there will likely be a delicious dinner cooking and a living room full of loved ones. 

  14. I'm making my first attempt to cook rice in my Instant Pot. I am completely incapable of making rice that isn't either mush or crunchy, no matter what I do. Here's what I have done so far:

    1 c. wild rice

    2 c. water

    1tsp better than bullion veggie because it sounded good.

    1tsp. butter

    Put in pot and set to 25 min per https://www.platingsandpairings.com/cook-perfect-rice-instant-pot/.

    Prayed Rufus' blessing on my endeavour.

    Blogged about it on FJ. Updates to follow.

  15. Musings of a Former Pole Dancer

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    The title explains it all: My MIL is moving back to the region where husband and I live. We are state line to her home state (and mine), so she will be uber close to us. NEITHER of us is excited or looking forward to this B moving back with her mother (who is also not excited).

    She's not a job type person, and already told GMIL she cannot get a job because she's unskilled. She's not even 60 yet. The unspoken truth is she is going to wait for her mother to die and leave her the trust fund she's expecting. It feels like a page from a fundie soap opera because I cannot even with the amount of laziness bullshit from her.

    I'll have more updates later. She's supposed to be back by October 1st, but we don't know if she's going to cancel and try to "work things out" with her abusive, bipolar, alcoholic husband (for the second or third time). 

    In case you were wondering, my MIL is nowhere near fundie or even religious. 

  16. BlackberryGirl

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    BlackberryGirl
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    Whoa!  Last night was weird as hell. At some point within minutes of me falling asleep, Mark took my hand and kissed it, in his sleep, and I went through the ceiling. I was startled awake and somehow thought a heyena had licked my arm. 

    Then a couple hours later I surfaced to see a ninja in full black costume jump over the bed and crouch by the window. 

    Fuck. Obviously I didn't go back to sleep. I had taken tramadol twice yesterday for the migraine and arthritis. I generally average 2 tramadol every 6 months or so..and its the lowest dose. Apparently some lucky people have halucinations as a side effect to tramadol. 

    I need some kind  of pain relief. Codiene is absolutely out.  At least the headache is gone and I feel generally better. Stil need to make dr Appointment, they are closed today, I'll call tomorrow. 

  17. Wild, Wandering, Wondering

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    wild little fox
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    I don't know what happened but suddenly my depression has disappeared. I'm looking forward to the future. 

    I have gone as far as starting an exercise program I found on YouTube. It's for people with mobility issues to get them moving forward. I've been able to do the first episode three times. Today I purchased some hand weights designed for walking but they will fit in my hands without exasperating my hand pain. 

    My t-shirt fit better this morning because I'm already tightening up in my upper body. My pants were too long so I know I'm moving forward. I did need to use my cane when walking to and from the courthouse, but overall I'm feeling stronger. I'm looking forward to doing the program tomorrow. 

    Goals:

    Keep at it.

    Find a picture or pictures of bicycles. When I drop some weight I'm buying one! Mobility this winter in SoCal will be so much easier.

     

     

     

     

  18. I'm old, so I apologize for using a blog for this because I can't find the jibber-jabber place to post random things like this. 

    You know where the ads are on FJ, right?  We all do, and 9 times outta 10 I couldn't tell you what the ad was for because I just ignore them.  But Sears,  somehow, popped up with an ad for power tools.  Lots of power tools and tool boxes.  And a Windola (maybe not exactly a Windola, but I'm close).  After clicking on her and finding out you can do so many different things with her I decided I'd lingered long enough on the ad.  Gods know what's going to show up on the ad space NOW since I showed an interest in a poseable life-size barbie doll.  

    Has anyone else been blessed with this abomination or is it just me?!  

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    applejack
    Latest Entry

    I'm sorry that I've not come back with this blog and tips and tricks!

    I took a vacation - the first vacation I'd taken in 8 years! - to Seattle in March, where I got to finally meet my best friend in person, and we got to go see Hamilton on tour! Then I fell into a Stardew Valley on the Switch rabbit hole, and I was a bridesmaid in a wedding, and then... well. Work. Lots of work, lots of turn around. And Cubs games on TV to watch, and my boys in pinstripes kind of take precendence since I get to watch so few games because of work and refusing to shell out $90 a year for MLB.tv.

    I might change my focus of this blog (because I have a fafillionty Stardew screencaps!), but I'll try to still put some makeup stuff in here too.

  19. My grandmother was born in 1898 and died at the age of 102 in 2001, thus living a life touching three centuries.  At the time of her death she was of diminished stature and eyesight but was otherwise ‘healthy’.  She had never contracted polio, as my grandfather had, and she was never stricken with cancer or heart disease, or any other ailment.  She simply died of old age as her body just could not sustain life anymore.

    My grandmother lived most of her life in England, moving to Canada when she was eighty.  She survived two world wars, and was not among the millions of people who perished in the bombings or in concentration camps.  

    Grandma was not in Manchester in 1996, nor was she on Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie.

    She was not visiting the World Trade Centre or the Pentagon in 2001.  She was not on a flight that day destined for a quiet field in Pennsylvania.  

    She was not on a train in beautiful Madrid in 2004, nor was she strolling along the Promenade des Anglais in Nice in 2016.  She adored visiting Paris, but was not there in November of 2015.  My grandmother was not enjoying a summer afternoon on La Rambla in Barcelona last year.  She was also not crossing London Bridge in the city she loved so much.

    My grandmother would likely never have gone to the Pulse nightclub in Orlando and, similarly, would not have enjoyed a wonderful country festival in Las Vegas.  Grandma was not in Oklahoma City or San Bernadino, nor was she teaching innocent children in Dublane, Scotland or Sandy Hook, Connecticut, or Parkland, Florida.

    My grandmother was also not walking on Yonge Street in Toronto yesterday.  

    In over a hundred years she was never in the wrong place at the wrong time. Not once. But so, so many other people were.  They left home one day and never returned. None will live to the age my grandmother did. They have all had their futures stolen from them and their families have been forever destroyed.  Simply because they were in those places at the worst possible moment. In many of those instances, a few short minutes was the difference between life and death.

    I’m glad my grandmother was not alive to witness 9/11 and the continuous horrors exacted across the globe in the subsequent years. I sometimes imagine that human beings are an experiment; one that will prove to be a complete and utter failure.  It seems we will never cease finding ways to kill each other.  

    Yes, my grandmother was lucky. As am I as I write this post. And all of you, my lovely FJ friends, are, too. I hope we will all be as fortunate as my grandmother.

     Because it is all just so fucking random.  

  20. The Fundees - Sims Style

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    nomoxian
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    Despite keeping Jill away from David as much as possible when Steve and Steve 2 were at work, she still liked-liked him more. Steve was too boring and the other Steve was too angry for her tastes.

    David and Mrs David - not Ms. thank you very much! - got married in a Godly church, and are currently waiting for God to bring them their first child. In the meantime, David is spending his days fishing in Gods green gloryness, and Mrs David is spending her time singing Godly tunes to praise Him. She hopes that God will provide a guitar and piano, though she wonders how a piano will fit in the RV since there is barely enough room for the crib. Darn Sims baby is required to sleep in a crib even though their bedroom with attached private bathroom has more than enough room for a cage.

    (I'm not sure if I'm going to continue this. I was playing it with the hopes she would end up with someone else, so the gameplay would be more interesting and less... real.)

  21. I'm jumping ahead a bit in time here, but hopefully, I'll be able to do some catch-up posts in the next couple of days. Anyway, the Lord has decided to bless the O'Hurleys with twins. In addition to the two toddlers already in the house. Thankfully, Matthew is only one day away from aging up. I caved and used the free real estate cheat to buy them a nice big house in Brindleton Bay. Now, I'm off to look into the MC Commander mod since we've almost got a full house already!

  22. Don't get me wrong.  I actually do love my sister.  Except when I do not.  And she has made it really really hard to love her in the last (doing the math here)  3.5 years.  (no really last 'contact' was June 2014 in a cryptic 'stand down, I'm alive' Facebook post - oh and this was in the period when I was getting Mom diagnosed with dementia and dealing with drive-offs and actually needed to talk to her).  

    And yesterday was her birthday.  And Facebook likes to remind me of this because her birthdays are turned on (for the record, mine is not because I don't always react well to 'everybody' screaming happy birthday at me for days) - even though her last post was June 2014.  

    I assume she is alive.  That assumption is based on statements I receive (no, really) regarding her storage unit when the payments are late.  My means of communicating with her is via facebook messages that indicate no receipt but trust me they are getting through somehow (I care not how) because a few months ago the storage unit threatened to sell her stuff and I communicated that to her and for a month or so no notice.  In the mail today - yup, another notice about late payment.  So I just sent another message and the lovely I miss you pangs have reverted back instantaneously to I hate you.  

    My suspicion based on a limited about of internet research/stalking is that she's having financial issues and hiding from creditors (because that is always a great way to deal with issues).  And I cannot help her if she doesn't want to be helped (as indicated by her hiding from everyone).  

    I did not wish her a public happy birthday yesterday because in the past that has resulted in friends of hers, some dating back to high school coming out of the woodwork and then I have to go through this whole weird explanation of I have zero clue what is going on or where she is.  Which always feels so sad and stupid.  I'll also admit to not attending certain family functions (mainly on the paternal side) because my uncle is going to ask about her and really I want him to leave it (and about half dozen other subjects) alone but he won't.  (and really dude, you are my father's brother and you know how he was so whey the hell are you of all people expecting me to know or figure out or get through to my sister who is acting the same way he did)??

    The positive news of the morning from the same batch of mail is that the Recovering State of Brownbacistan has renewed Mom's Medicaid for another year.  

  23. Christmas is over, New Year is gone, I'm out of excuses. Back to weekly posting plan.


    And, so, what's going on in Ranford household?

    To be honest, not much. Life continued in familiar, chaotic misery. 

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    Viola started a new parenting strategy. You put a crying baby on floor and lecture it. Very fundie-like, and very unproductive. 

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    She decided to share this wisdom to the world with her first book. Basically, it’s a collection of her blog posts, but readers now must pay money for it. 
    Smart life choices!
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    Reed is a bit of a bully towards Huckleberry. He gets along with twins and doesn't care about quads yet, but every time he sees Huck with a toy, he takes it away. 
    Zachary and Viola would encourage Huck to give Reed his favorite childhood position, but, unfortunately, Huckleberry doesn't have anything that belongs just to him. 
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    But Reed has a good side, too. He catches more fishes in one day than Zachary has managed to catch in his entire life. 

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    The fishes Reed provides is the main food source for entire family now. 

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    And he remembers to pick up all the old bottles from kitchen floor. And, trust me, there are lot of bottles. 

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    #StoryTime: During one night a total stranger entered a house!!! Viola was busy potty training Huckleberry and didn't notice until it was too late!

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    The ungodly stranger turned out to be a hobby instructor! They are almost as bad as social workers, running around and telling kids that it's ok to enjoy something!!
    (Apparently, Forest likes this one particular toy so much he has gained enough enthusiasm to be in zone. And he is only toddler. I'll take it as a sign.)

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    And, yes, no pregnancy announcement from Ranfords... Have Lord closed Viola's womb? Without giving her a precious little baby girl? Or is this just temporally hardship that will be overcome with combination of praying and sweet fellowshiping? Viola sure hopes so. 

  • Posts

    • HereticHick

      Posted (edited)

      With all the "Duggar Construction" brothers and brothers in law in the area, I just don't understand building a new house vs. rehabbing a rundown one.

       

      also, is that house 3 bedrooms, max? And no basement? I guess they don't intend to cram 19 kids into it

      I guess this means that Derick doesn't intend for his future stellar law career to ever take him away from NW Arkansas. The US Supreme Court can rest easy now.

      So they will be, at most, 10 miles away from the Duggar compound.

      Edited by HereticHick
    • Meggo

      Posted

      I'm good with books. I'm good with experiences (of all varieties). And you don't HAVE to get my kid anything - really. If you want to send him a card - he would be absolutely delighted. Throw in a few stickers - even better. 

      But - directed to my mom's cousin who insists on "buying" my son things - don't scrounge around in your old AVON stuff to find something at that 6 year old boy might like. She also gave him (at age 4) a stack of cards that she'd stamped. For birthdays, etc. Her expectation - she told me as much - was that he'd hang on to them until he was a grown up and then would send them out to people. He was FOUR. 
      This year -for his birthday -  he got a coffee mug that was made to look like a Christmas drum, with a scary teddy bear inside the mug. And two packets of hot cocoa that she clearly had around the house. 
      Really - I have ZERO expectation that this woman would give my son something for any holiday. ZERO. She doesn't have to do anything. So please stop with the garage sale rejects. Or the cheapest quality toy you can find that will break before we get home. He doesn't NEED anymore toys. 

      I also don't want her to do any experience things because that means I'd have to experience HER and I try to limit that. She's nuts. 

    • Koala

      Posted

      Lori's delete finger is up and going for the day.  Gotta delete scripture before any of her readers see it and start thinking for themselves.  Too bad for Lori, my screen grab finger is faster. 😉

      bible.PNG.886cd27ed023d66d90b6c0cc65e708ca.PNG

      • Upvote 3
    • Meggo

      Posted

      13 hours ago, acheronbeach said:

      Like Toronto? There are so many great lingerie shops in the city.  My big busted BFF goes there even though Buffalo is probably closer to her place.

      No - closer to Detroit. Toronto would be great - but I'm a good four hours from there.

    • Screamapillar

      Posted

      The builders' site was really easy to find based on Jill's picture of them in front of the sold sign and the town they're in. If I was a public figure of any kind, however minor, I would be a lot more careful about things like that.

       

      • Upvote 1


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