A question of discipline

A Facebook friend has a 14-year-old daughter and her husband, while she was working, took the daughter to see a horror film that was really probably not a good thing for the daughter to see. She was feeling pretty conflicted about it and asked for the opinions of other parents….

An opinion? Why yes I *do* have an opinion!  I know you are simply shocked to learn that…… 🙂


I started writing my response and, well, decided it was way too long for a Facebook post on someone else’s timeline and so moved my reply here.

I did my very best to keep my kids away from things that I thought would harm them. When our oldest son was a toddler, my husband was out of work and so during the day, while at home with our child, he would watch anything at all he wanted to, thinking it would have no effect on our son. After a  time we noticed our son acting out more and more physically and I found out about my DH’s tv habits.


This was one of the shows he was watching daily with our son…….

I asked him if we could try an experiment: for 6 weeks, while our son was around/awake only non-commercial kids-oriented television would be watched, saving ad-filled and adult oriented tv for night-time or when our son was out (like with Grandma). Within 2 weeks, we noticed a big and positive difference in our son’s behavior, and so we went on along that way with all 3 of our children.

So, my children were not permitted to watch PG-13 movies before they were 13, unless either one of us had seen it before and deemed it appropriate. I also had seen some scientific evidence that caffeine possibly can prevent kids from growing to their fullest height, so they were not allowed caffeinated drinks (sodas, teas, coffees,etc.) til they were 15.


Of course, I was unable to enforce these rules when they would stay over at their friends’ houses, but I was very persistent at home. Oh and how they would argue and complain about how mean I was!!!! How stupid my rules were! Nobody else had such stupid rules and so on….


When, in turn,each one of them came to me to really talk/discuss (not just complain) about why I had such rules, I would tell them 3 things:

1) My children are the most precious things in my life and I want the best for them, plus I’ve given a lot of thought as to what would be best for them – it’s not about a power struggle.

2) Ruhiyyih Khanum told the story of when she was young, she very much wanted to read a certain quite scandalous book and her mother refused to let her read it. Her mother gave the analogy of a pot that has been formed and dried, but hasn’t yet been fired in a kiln (the greenware stage). Anything can easily make a mark or a dent in that pot and that mark will be permanent. Young people are just like that greenware and until they have been fired in the kiln of life experience,it is better that they be protected ( all 3 of my kids had done some pottery so they knew that this was true).


3) When you attain the age of being able to do these things (13 for those movies and 15 for the caffeine), you will enjoy them a huge amount more than you would have if they had always been permitted to you. When you are young, those ages seem so very far away, and I know because I have been those ages – I have the perspective of age and I know that waiting will not harm you in any way. However, my rules and these protections, as stupid as they seem now, are truly a gift from me to you.

My youngest is now 18 and 2 of my 3 children have affirmed that those rules were “probably a good idea” and one of them even apologized to me for arguing with me about it AND that they had tried to stay a certain friend’s house very often so they could break these rules “behind my back”. This grown child of mine said that even then, he could see the benefit of the rules, as his friend didn’t have them and in many ways, it took away his childhood innocence too early. This same child also had nightmares for years about one scene in “Shaun of the Dead“. I’ve seen it and it isn’t really that bad, but he knows now that he saw it when he was too young and it made a big impression on him.


Your mileage my vary, but I am in a stand for enforcing such rules, and most of the time it’s no fun, lemme tell you. Once something is seen, it cannot be UNseen, not until somebody invents brain bleach or something, and your children are worth it. Innocence lost is exactly that – lost.


I was never in a hurry for my kids to be grownups. Childhood is very short nowadays….

The purveyors of movies and tv advertising DO NOT CARE about what is best for your children, they care about your money; do not let them make your parenting decisions for you. We are the protectors of our children and also the educators – the responsibility is ours and the world will do all that it can to tell you just how uncool you are for doing your job.

Good luck!


Weekend Round up /Contest reminder

  • The Force of Nature’s soccer team won a game!
  • -ate some wonderful food at Mezzaluna (try the Eggplant Parmesan appetizer; fantastic!)
  • saw the movie “Good Hair” with some friends (I enjoyed it)
  • Got some more Kureyon for the Lizard Ridge blanket (I’m halfway there)
  • made zero progress on the Tapestry Cowl
  • got “The Individual formerly known as Homeschool Kid”‘s hair cut. Yay!
  • since my hairstyle was making me feel OLD, I even got my hair cut (I now now own a flatiron to style it with….)
  • no band rehearsal because the bandleader had a heart attack (please say healing prayers for Sylvester!)
  • spent what seemed like endless hours tryna fix the Force of Nature’s cobbled-together iPod (I should post a picture – it’s held together with rubber bands for REAL)  and to remove some rather nasty spyware from my ‘puter
  • Studmuffin left for Cali on a business trip
  • I didn’t remember to call my brother for his birthday til like 2 am. I still haven’t called :o(
  • Natasha’s limp has gone away as mysteriously as it came.
  • posted one of my cutest ever posts (I think) about Domo-kun with cute pictures AND NOBODY COMMENTED      :::sad trombone:::  I guess everyone is too busy?  Or do you just hate Domo-kun?  Or is it me?

Today, I:

  • forgot to put out the trash
  • felt like crap all day
  • spoke to 2 wonderful friends on the phone (I love you guys!!!)
  • finished knitting No.1 Son’s birthday prezzie and am felting it (and felting and felting….)
  • took a nap and was
  • late making dinner and so
  • burnt the spaghetti with meatballs……..

Life is good but I still feel yucky. It will pass…..  WHERE is the goshdurn heating pad?!
Meal plan Monday:
Mon- spags & meatballs
Tues- Shepherd’s Pie a la Cracker (this didn’t get made last week; I WILL share the recipe)
Wed- leftovers
Thurs- Mac & cheese & salad
Fri- Romano Beans & rice
Sat- Soup & sandwiches/Corn Chowder
Sun- Chinese take out

CONTEST Reminder

Contest ends on October 31st, 2009 at midnight Alabama time, and the winner will be announced when I get around to it (probably during the following week).  My choice will be completely arbitrary and humor is encouraged.  :o)
Please submit prospective names in the comments – the name I choose for him will win a $14 gift card to Starbucks. If you live someplace without Starbucks, I’ll contact you directly and we’ll work it out.
See all the other names submitted in the comments here


One of my heroes

I’m not particularly interested in the interview…just listen to the man sing.  What you don’t know is that he’s singing – just him & his guitar – to 70,000+ Zaireans  who’ve been screaming & hollerin and dancin and having an amazing time at this concert. Listen to how quiet the audience is……

An update from the Studmuffin himself

The dear husband sent out a health update to some family members and I thought I’d  share it with you.  :o)

“We went to Nashville last Wednesday for Helen’s six week appointment with the surgeon.

Everything went well, they cleared her to drive again and took her off a couple of the medicines she was on.  We have to make another appointment with the cardiac doctor here in Huntsville for early June.  That doctor will decide when she gets to get off the remaining medicines.

She’s been going to a cardiac rehab facility at the Huntsville Hospital Wellness Center here in Huntsville.  She’ll go for 12 weeks total (we’ve done it for 3 weeks now), 3 days a week for an hour each day.  If she makes every session she’ll get a free month’s access to the Wellness Center.

Her wound is healing nicely.  We’ve got an appointment with the wound people during the second week of June, but I think that it may be completely closed up before then.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, believe me, that’s all the details you want to have.

School’s out on Wednesday, they had to do two days this week to make up for the closure during the Swine Flu pandemic, the pool opened over the weekend, and if the rains ever stops and the sun comes out again, we’ll be heading into summer.”

2 more things:
1.  Please say a lot of healing prayers for my cousin’s wife ,Shane.  She had a big operation last week and her recovery has been rather botched (imo) by the hospital.

2.  Go see the new Star Trek.  I’ve seen it twice and will probably go again….

StarTrek Movie Poster 2StarTrek_2009Movie

A milestone is looming and some fluffy bits

My 40th birthday will be Saturday, December 13th.  I’m pondering what this means to me.

I’m pretty sure that I’ve lived more than half my life already – I smoked like a chimney for years (I quit 14 years ago – YAY!) and although I eat very healthily these days and get regular exercise, I remain very fat. Don’t get me wrong – I’d rather be fat than still smoking (I was less fat as a smoker)!

I guess my only true regret is having to deal with these mysterious allergies that have been pestering me for the last year. I wanna be forty and fabulous, but mostly I’m forty and wheezy. Other than that and some peri-menopause woes, I’m pretty good healthwise and that is such a blessing!! I ‘ve known quite a few people in the last 3 years especially who have had cancer (and not everyone has beat the disease unfortunately) and so much of your life goes on hold when you are ill. The daily challenges are SO much harder when your health isn’t good and I am so thankful.

But it could all end tomorrow – and I guess that’s OK too. I would like to see the kids all grown and happily settled into adulthood, but none of us know what tomorrow brings, do we? I’ve got lots of wonderful yarn to knit*…life is good!



I’ve been very much into the Stephenie Meyer books over the last year and a half and got a chance to go see the movie, Twilight, last Wednesday.  It’s really good in some places – way better than I expected, and in other bits, it is pretty awful – worse than I expected.  It’s a long movie (2 hours)  but the time just flew by for me, and I will go see it again a few times (rather unusual for me).  I’ve read a good bit about why this particular story is so fascinating – Studmuffin sent me this link to a really nice article about it ( ),

but I don’t think any of the things I’ve read have hit on why I find them so good (I won’t bore you with it all now….I’ll wait ’til later).  But there are couple of things that I just love about this Twilight phenomenon that I want to share now:

  • written by a woman who didn’t consider herself a writer with no thought originally of writing a novel (much less four of them)
  • movie directed by a woman – in the top ten of big opening weekends, this is the only female-directed film on the list
  • the protagonist is a young woman and there’s actual action in the story, PLUS during the only shopping scene during the film, she is obviously not into it
  • all the women keep their clothes on; it’s the men who exhibit various degrees of shirtlessness
(I think perhaps the restaurant scene is my favorite…….)
If you haven’t read the books, you might not enjoy the movie since there’s so much backstory that really cannot be included.  It’s true that the books are NOT great literature, but the storytelling is VERY good; you really get drawn in by the characters and the story and I do recommend them( the audiobooks are my favorite).  But I gotta say……
Poor Rob Pattinson!
He’s gonna have to deal with being a teen heartthrob forever, and he seems like a pretty decent guy who’s rather serious about acting.  He does quite a fine job in Twilight with a very difficult character, but he’s got a lot of learning to do before he becomes a great actor; it would be a shame if his admittedly very nice looks overshadow his acting for always.  AND I’m sure the female fans will make his life a misery off and on for the rest of his life – I’m sure he had no idea that Twilight was gonna be so freaking huge!  Fortunately, he’s a Brit and that may keep him from some of the crazy excess of egomania that is such a manifestation of Hollywood.
How’s that for fluffy?
*  Of course, new yarn is always welcome, should anyone wish to give me some (tee hee)…and I will probably post a wishlist (mainly for my mum’s benefit) by the end of the week (not that you’re interested but just in case…)

Ten Most Favorite Movie Songs

I thought, “This will be easy….”  and that was 3 hours ago.  I’ma have to divide this into several categories and call these:


First I was thinking in this direction:


  1. Institutionalized – Suicidal Tendencies – “Repo Man”….Talk about capturing the zeitgeist of the moment!
  2. Ain’t Nobody – Chaka Khan – “Breakin'”….This was a sort of a forgettable breakdancing movie – tho’ the dancing was mostly terrific and Ice T is in it, the acting and the story weren’t fab.  What folks DON’T remember is that this monster tour de force of Chaka’s came from the rather excellent soundtrack. Almost this whole song is in the movie and it accompanies a rather tedious “teaching Kelly to dance” sequence.
  3. Try A Little Tenderness – Otis Redding – “Pretty in Pink”….watch the video and feel the love.
  4. Fight the Power – Public Enemy – “Do the Right Thing”….Another zeitgeist moment.
  5. The Banana Boat Song – Harry Belafonte – “Beetlejuice”
  6. His Eye Is On the Sparrow – Tanya Blount & Lauryn Hill – “Sister Act 2″…They totally blew the top of this song; a just-before-the-Fugees-hit Lauryn Hill has a big part in the movie.
  7. You got a friend in me – Randy Newman – “Toy Story”
  8. I Am A Man Of Constant Sorrow – Dan Tyminski -“O Brother Where Are Thou”
  9. Boys Are Back In Town – Thin Lizzy – “A Knight’s Tale”…I started to laugh when I watched the film – I just couldn’t believe they put it in there…it was perfect.    Slide to 1:39 for the clip
  10. Bright Side of Life – Eric Idle – “The Life of Brian”
  11. Tequila – The Champs – “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure”…His last request before the bikers kill him…
  12. As Time Goes By – Dooley Wilson – “Casablanca”
  13. Why – Annie Lennox – “Boys on the Side”…This song is a masterpiece – the whole soundtrack is pretty good and so was the movie…but it could have been great.  It had such potential. :::sigh:::
  14. Oh Yeah – Yello – “The Secret of My Success” & “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”
  15. Slide to 1:40 miss the set-up and just hear the song.

  16. Canned Heat – Jamiroquai – “Napoleon Dynamite”
  17. Lose Yourself – Eminem – “8 Mile”

Then I started thinking about:


  1. The Entertainer – “the Sting”
  2. Rock ‘n’ Roll High School – the Ramones – “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School”
  3. Rock Around the Clock – Bill Haley & the Comets – “Blackboard Jungle”
  4. Born To Be Wild – Steppenwolf – “Easy Rider”
  5. Do You Know Where You’re Going To? -Diana Ross -“Mahogany”
  6. Ode to Billie Joe – Bobbie Gentry – “Ode to Billie Joe”
  7. Evergreen -Barbra Streisand – “A Star Is Born”
  8. Live and Let Die – Paul McCartney,  Goldfinger- Shirley Bassey, Nobody Does It Better – Carly Simon – James Bond 007 movies
  9. Ghostbusters – Ray Parker Jr. – “Ghostbusters”
  10. Up Where We Belong – Joe Cocker & Jennifer Warnes – “An Officer & A Gentleman”

But then I said, “Wait a minute.  What about…?”


  1. THE SOUND OF MUSIC -“Edelweiss”, Do Re Mi”, “So Long, Farewell”
  2. THE WIZARD OF OZ -“Over the Rainbow”, “If I Only Had A Brain”
  3. SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN – “Singin’ In the Rain”, “Good Morning”
  4. THE WIZ- “Ease On Down the Road”, “Don’t Give Me No Bad News”
  6. ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW – “Sweet Transvestite”,”Time Warp”
  7. ALADDIN – “I Can Show You The World”, “One Jump Ahead” (and THE LITTLE MERMAID & THE LION KING)
  9. TOMMY – “Pinball Wizard”
  11. HAIR – “Three Five Zero Zero”, “Easy to Be Hard”, “Frank Mills”

Which led me to:


  1. Star Wars
  2. The Good the Bad & the Ugly
  3. Life as a House – Mark Isham is a bloomin’ genius.
  4. The Pianist
  5. Amadeus – How can you go wrong with Mozart?
  6. Harry Potter
  7. 2001: A Space Odyssey – Not only was Strauss a genius, so was Stanley Kubrick.  I still get chills every time I hear the main theme.
  8. Pink Panther – Henry Mancini – I cannot think of any piece of music that evokes as immediate a mood as this does.
  9. Life Is Beautiful – Not as well known, but truly lovely.
  10. Schindler’s List
  11. Shakespeare In Love

SOME HONORABLE MENTIONS (or stuff that doesn’t fit into the above categories)

  • BLUE VELVET – Angelo Badlamenti at his weird best.  Throw in Bobby Vinton and the most surreal placement of Roy Orbison’s “In Dreams”, it’s simply unnerving.
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas – Both Danny Elfman’s and Tim Burton’s masterwork IMO.
  • 10 Things I Hate About You – Pure fun.
  • Dr. Zhivago – “Somewhere My Love” definitely evokes a mood, but the costumes and the musical arrangments appear very dated to me now.
  • Purple Rain & Batman – Prince is beyond a genius; he’s from another galaxy.
  • The Decline Of Western Civilization – American punk from way before Nirvana.
  • Chariots of Fire & Axel F both win for overexposure.

Movie quotes answers

Thanks to everyone who guessed.  I had a lot of fun with this.  I’ll probably do it again in a year (that is – if I remember).  If you haven’t seen some of these movies, I strongly recommend that you do so, except for maybe the first one (it’s really strange.  It’s my favorite but it’s still *really* strange.).


Movie quotes thing

The rules:

1. Pick 15 of your favorite movies.
2. Go to IMDB and find a quote from each movie.
3. Post them here for everyone to guess.
4. Strike it out when someone guesses correctly, and put who guessed it and the movie.
5. NO GOOGLING/using IMDb search or other search function