Saturday, May 30, 2009

Strike Another Item From The To-Do List

Three loads of laundry later, I've taken out two bags of trash and hauled out at least 20 old phone books to the recycling bin. I've bagged up a second bag of recycling to take to Mom's (my complex only recycles newspapers and cardboard). I've also cleaned up a lot of the stuff around my computers.

I still have more laundry to do, plus a ton of magazines to go through, though, so this could take a while.

Strike One More Item Off The To-Do List

You have no idea how thrilled I am right now.

For months now I have been taking the laundry to my Mother's home because my washing machine was draining the water out onto the floor of my condo. Given that I live on the 3rd floor I was thankful it didn't cause any damage to the neighbors in the unit directly downstairs from me.

Today I got the washing machine fixed. Given that this is one of those combo washer/dryer units, it was much less to fix than to replace. So I got it fixed. And now, as I type this, the happy hum of my washing machine is doing some laundry, without my having to cart the laundry downstairs, drive it to Mom's, bring it back and take it back upstairs.

And now that the repairman has left the premises, Rachel the Watch Cat can go back to her Queen of the Domicile attitude and lounge at my feet.

First Hollyweird, Now Video Gamers

It's been a long known fact that Hollywood (aka Hollyweird to me) has lost it's ability to produce an original story/plot in the movies we see. How many sequels and prequels does it take to kill the original? Only George Lucas knows.

Now it seems that video game creators are facing the same type of creative block, so they are now turning to real life situations for their new releases.

See the article for more:

Current Events As Video Games

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Greedy, Greedy Greedy

Corporations operating in the U.S. are moving their location of incorporation from some of the more suspect off shore countries to ones where tax agreements exist to limit the tax liability in the U.S.

Here's the article:

Wall Street Journal

For The Moms Out There

Check it out from iTunes:

Scripture Stories

New And Cool on iTunes!

The LDS Church now has a radio channel!

Here's the link:

Mormon Channel

You can add the widget to your blog:

Widget

Here is the link to one of the programs - Conversations - which can be subscribed to via iTunes.

Conversations

Also, be sure to check out the other listings on the right side of the above link on iTunes for other programs also broadcast on the Mormon Channel.

Made in America

Sad, but true.

Made in America

Shared via AddThis

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

GM's Dirty Little Bankruptcy Secret

What you may not yet know about the GM Bankruptcy:

After shuttering down plants for 9 weeks, it remains to be seen how many of those plants will reopen. Now it appears it is also has outlined plans to the U.S. Government that it plans on importing vehicles made in China. That's right, GM will be importing from China. And our government is backing this plan, to get GM "profitable" again as quickly as possible.

Is this really a change we need?

Here's my source:

Wall Street Journal

Monday, May 25, 2009

This is for our soldiers

I don't know how many of you have seen these pictures:



Ammon A.W. Vaughn (2nd great- grandfather, center grave) - Co. E. 10th Indiana Infantry - Union - Civil War



Donald Robinson (uncle) - U.S. Army - WWII






Charles B. Sells (my father) - U.S. Army - Korean War



Ralph Michael Sells (my brother) - U.S. Army

If you're wondering if the service to our community stopped there for my family, you need to read the post for Father's Day last year: The Parable of the First Responder.

I love my country, not just in words but also in how I live my life. I've had some great role models to follow.

Happy Memorial Day to our vets, and the families of those who have been lost.

God Bless The USA

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Real High School Musical

This was funny, honest, but... Walt?

A Taste of Some Restitution For US Citizens

For my Facebook friends, I posted a link to Cheney's Law on Frontline last week. This is a video that exposes some of what is known about what Bush, Cheney and their attorneys did to basically rip apart the US Constitution, namely the Bill of Rights.

For those who are not on Facebook, here's the link: Cheney's Law

Imagine my surprise (and feeling that there is some hope for our country now) when just a day or two later, I found this on CNN.com:

Disbar Bush Lawyers

While, in my opinion, disbarring is not enough, it is a start to restore the checks and balances our Founding Fathers placed in our Constitution for a reason.

The torture issue is only one of a number of offenses these attorneys inflicted upon the American voters. Watch the Frontline story to see how Cheney and Addington successfully (at least for a time) eliminated the checks and balances that are supposed to protect American citizens from tyranny.

The Story of Stuff

Part 1



Part 2



Part 3



Part 4



Part 5



Part 6



Part 7



Visit The Story of Stuff

Dead People

This is for those who feel truly "overpaid".


video

Here is how to get the video: Dilbert Podcast

Friday, May 22, 2009

News For Bloggers

Here's an article everyone should read from the Wall Street Journal:

Bloggers Beware

For Those of You Aspiring Millionaires

Here's a column about the very wealthy in Vanity Fair titled "The One Percent", aimed at talking about the mega rich. Here is the link to the column the contributor did on their new years resolutions.

The One Percent

What Social Class Are You?

I have no idea, and I don't care. At least that's what I wanted to tell Oprah today about her show. People were talking about their nice upper middle class to upper class lifestyles and how hurt they are that they can no longer afford to keep it up. I actually felt really sad for them.

You see, I'm a woman who has seen both sides of this coin. I started out in a working class (lower middle class) family, married a man who made good money to where we had a comfortable lifestyle, then to lose it suddenly with his death. Instead of a husband, I got a life insurance check. There are worse things in life to deal with than keeping up appearances when times get rough.

I'm grateful to have a home I own and it is paid for. Friends of mine told me to sell and get a bigger home during the housing boom, look where I'd be now if I had listened?

I'm grateful to have a car I own and it's paid for.

I'm grateful to have money in the bank, and food storage for when that money starts getting low.

I'm grateful for my friends, family and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. One day I'll be able to ditch the money and get my husband back.

Summertime!

In the good old summertime... if you don't know that song, you're probably very young.

Today marked the first day of my summer break from school, and while I still had a few things to do at the school today, I was out by noon.

I'm very grateful for our PE teacher, Rick, who was very kind in voluntarily helping me out with my boxes of books and movies.

I'm also very grateful for the teachers who were so kind in giving me hugs, cards of thanks, and one teacher even gave me a gift card for Best Buy after I spent an evening teaching her how to make movies using iMovie and Garageband. She and her students made a music video, and the kids got a real kick out of it. I'll have to get with this teacher to see if her students would like to re-work the screen play I made over 10 years ago (and yes, it is registered under my maiden name of Cassandra Dawn Sells in the Library of Congress for copyright) into a movie. They'll need to shorten the screenplay (it's roughly 100 pages long), so they can make a short movie out of it, but it will be a fun, new way of teaching writing and the importance of vocabulary.

Since these students will be 5th graders next year, maybe I could approach the 5th grade teachers instead with the idea.

I'm very grateful for the kids, without them I wouldn't have a job, but I also wouldn't have the joy of watching them grow and develop, even within the course of one school year. Parents who ignore their children for their own self interests are really missing out. The kids are the reason I stay, it's the politics in education that drives me crazy.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A New Ride For The Moon

What Is Wrong With This Picture?



Do you see something wrong with this picture?

We've got a basketball athlete, already getting paid in the millions of dollars, asking for a raise. Then look at the other major headline, the one about 155,000 positions will be lost by 2011 after a projected 3 years of declining employment.

Now let's look at some of the lowest paid professions: Our military and educators. Why should any athlete be asking for a pay raise for running around on a basketball court (or pick any other sport you like) when we have people keeping this country safe and educating the future leaders and entrepreneurs who get financially shafted by this nation?

Thank you, I'll get off my soapbox now. :o)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tonight's Dinner Furnished By:

http://www.wildflowerbread.com


Chicken Continental:

grilled chicken breast, swiss, marinated mushrooms, caramelized onion, romaine, tomato and honey mustard on a Ciabatta Roll.

And Fresh Lemonade.

I felt like being a little "decadent" today. I got off work at 5:45 p.m. today, and felt like treating myself to dinner. I wasn't expecting the crowd that was there, but I guess it was rush hour there as it is on the streets. I got my food to go and dodged Rachel while eating. I don't remember when I went out for dinner the last time, so this was a nice treat.

Monday, May 18, 2009

An Interesting Quote

This was from the October 2008 General Conference, in an address called The Test given by President Boyd K. Packer. I understand the reason the Lord prompted him to give this talk, do you?

This is one quote he gives, from Elder Phineas Richards:

"Brethren and friends, we who have lived to three-score years, have beheld the government of the United States in its glory, and know that the outrageous cruelties we have suffered proceeded from a corrupted and degenerate administration, while the pure principles of our boasted Constitution remain unchanged. …"

The really interesting part is this talk came during the election cycle, just prior to the U.S. Presidential elections held in November.

Do you think the U.S., by October 2008, suffered from a corrupted and degenerate administration?

I think you know what my answer is.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Garageband

Have you ever heard of Garageband? It's software made by Apple that is just fantastic, and this afternoon I took a free class at the Apple Store in Chandler to learn more about the 2009 version.

I made a small and simple beginning to an orchestral piece. It's called My Song 3, basically the default name it gave the file. This was done in about 1 hour while I was stopped to learn new things about the software. This was a fun class!

To play the link, right click and open the link in a new window.

Garageband Orchestral Loops Test

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Saturday, May 9, 2009

New Mobile Me Gallery

Hi There,

I now have a gallery on Mobile Me from Apple. I only have a few pictures on there, but I hope to add more soon.

Genealotech's Gallery

Apple Adventures

This morning I had an appointment with an Apple Genius. If you don't know what these are, these are the people who you speak with at an Apple Store when you have a technical issue with one of the Apple products.


video

Please see the video above for a better explanation.

Secretly, I think I want to be an Apple Genius. It just looks like so much fun to me. But, what a surprise, I am a geek.

So I go down to Chandler Fashion Mall this morning for my Genius appointment. My iPod touch has not been able to access the internet for the last few months, and it's less than a year old.

The Genius got the wi-fi working again, which was something I was able to accomplish with some work on my own, but the Safari would not pull up web pages, saying it was not connected to the internet. This was something between a hardware or programming problem. After resetting the network and the entire iPod, it finally worked, but when we restored it to the factory settings, it quit again. The Genius realized this was going to be an ongoing problem so it was switched out for me. Since I had bought this at Fry's Electronics, I also purchased from Apple an extra year of service on this, in case something else goes wrong with it.

I spent roughly an hour there, and thankfully I was smart enough to bring my macbook along for the ride in case I needed to do any synchronizing of my iPod. I'm glad I did, and the Genius indicated he was also thrilled that I had brought it. Who thinks to bring their laptop along for an iPod problem? Yeah, the geek.

The really funny part, though, came at the end. I asked the Genius about the workshops that the Apple Stores have, and he gave me some basic information on how to get in on one, and answered my question that yes, there would be classes offered during the summer. Then I asked about the widget that Apple has (and I have downloaded on my macbook) that lists for a week the classes coming up for the store. I asked if there was an app for this for the iPod Touch/ iPhone to also do this. The lightbulb went off and he gave me the biggest grin. He said "no, no one had thought of that". I asked him if he could recommend this through Apple, but he told me Apple listens to the customers more than they do the employees, and very strongly encouraged me to submit the idea. He was impressed!

Another Everest Blog

I just found another blog, thanks to Apple, where the chronicles of their climb are recorded on their macbooks with editing and submission being done at base camp.

I had no idea Everest was so popular this year!

First Ascent

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

A Little Ecclesiastical Humor

Bushman cousin Pat Spurlock sent this to me in an email, and I had to share it with you.


















Sunday, May 3, 2009

Check Out What Google Has Been Up To Lately...

Google Faces Antitrust Investigation For Agreement

Part 1:



Part 2:

Corporate Socialism

If you thought I was off my soapbox, well, I was for a while. Here's some information I've read in a book recently:

"...corporate socialism = the privatization of profit and socialization of risks and misconduct - is displacing the capitalist canons. This worsening condition prevents an adaptable capitalism, served by equal justice under law, from delivering higher standards of living. Civic and political movements must call for a decent separation of corporation and state. Otherwise invasive commercial imperatives will erode the civic and spiritual values of our democratic society.

Corporate executives, as a calss, have pulled off nothing short of a coup d'etat by seizing power from shareholders - the real owners. It is remarkable how the corporate owners lost their rights to effectively control what they own. That means the ability to nominate their own board of directors and to have real elections to decide who will run the company. The staggering compensation plans for CEOs rubber stamped by a selected board of compliant directors has led to inflating profits, downloading debt, and other crokked accounting. The purpose, always, is to increase stock prices to make the bosses' stock options more valuable. All too often top executives end up jeopardizing their own campanies. "Surveying continuing record executive pay," Fortune headlined in its May 3, 2004 issue, "the average CEO in 2002 earned 282 times what the average worker did. In 1982, the ratio was 42 to one.""


So, based on this, when you do think it was written? 2009? 2008? 2007? No on all counts, it was written in 2004, by Ralph Nader. It comes from the book "The Good Fight".

What? You mean the government and our taxes were bailing out corporations then too? This has been going on for some time now, but it has accelerated and ballooned to the point of ridiculous.

Do you want to know why executives of financial companies haven't had the rough treatment that the auto makers have had? Perhaps it could be because our Vice-President, Joe Bidon, passed legislation on behalf of the credit card companies (and the financial industry as a whole) making it more difficult for people (aka voters) to file bankruptcy. Now the people have awoken from their slumber to find themselves out of a job, out of a home with financial institutions still using predatory practices on the people.

We pay while they play.

Why? First, because they know they can, until the government slaps their hand. Second, because the people, as a whole, are not organized. Yes, we have two dominant political parties, however the leaders of both parties have been taking money for years from the same people who are robbing the people blind. Awake from your slumber, folks, it's past time to roll up our sleeves and get to work. The problem is, getting the people to wake up.

Yes, there is new legislation covering the predatory practices, but Congress created enough loopholes to give credit card companies a get out of jail card. The other problem is enforcement. The federal government hasn't enforced the rules that are now on the books with regards to predatory practices, how are they going to enforce the new laws?

Here are a few words from Ralph Nader:

Chrysler Bankruptcy and Credit Card Legislation

video

Saturday, May 2, 2009

An Approach To Fixing Education

This is from :NOW on PBS

Another Fun Podcast

Here's another fun podcast to watch or download: The Big D In HD.

This takes you though some of the attractions at Disneyland and Disney World.

The Dilbert Podcast

I don't know how many like Dilbert (you can see the daily funnies at the bottom of my blog), but this one reminds me so much of how I do a portion of my job.

The link to: The Dilbert Podcast

video