Archive for September, 2011

Are you really backing up your digital photos?

In the last year we’ve had two friends lose digital photos when they were burglarized.

My girlfriend that I mentioned in the blog this morning not only lost all of her electronics, she also lost some of her digital baby photos that she hadn’t backed up yet.

A few months ago our friend’s house and car were broken into. The thieves stole his laptop and his digital camera.

Our friend was an early adopter of digital photographer and probably had at least 10 years worth of digital photos of his children on the laptop and a bunch in the camera that he hadn’t transferred over yet.

He had not been backing up his digital images to CD, DVD, other hard drives, or to a photo site like Shutterfly. So he has lost ALL of it! (He could actually track his computer and could tell the police the address that his laptop was currently at and the police refused to go and get it. I am still trying to figure that out.)

So I am wondering how many other families out there are dropping their digital …

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Are you prepared if your house were burglarized?

My girlfriend returned home last week to find that her house had been burglarized. She had only been gone an hour!

Her back door had been smashed in and everything was taken. They had gone through every drawer and closet and even flipped over all the mattresses.

TVs, computers, wedding rings, check books, credit cards, passport… everything was gone! (They missed her iPad that was in the magazine rack. Let that be a lesson to you kids.)

She was so smart because she took the kids out of the house before they realized what happened, and they went for a playdate at their friend’s house for two days while the parents got the house sorted out. I don’t think the kids know they were burglarized. She didn’t want to scare them, which was very wise.

So my question is: Would you be prepared if your house was burglarized?

  1. Do you have insurance on everything – including computers and jewelry that might fall outside your regular homeowner’s policy?
  2. Do you have a list of everything …

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Brat Ban: Why are kids less welcome than they used to be?

It’s being called a “Brat Ban,” and it’s a movement to ban children from public places such as stores, restaurants and movie theaters.

Here’s some history of the movement from Babble.com:

“It started with an AdWeek story about so-called ‘brat bans’ — policies at stores, restaurants, and movie theatres that forbid or restrict children.”

“Within a day, the blogosphere was burning up with points and counterpoints. According to ‘Firecracker Mandy’ of the Childfreedom blog: ‘I hope the brat ban truly is an idea that is catching fire because it is long overdue, especially in the current climate of overly-permissive child-rearing that seems to have taken ahold of our culture with a death grip.’ ”

“Meanwhile, over at Yahoo! Shine, Piper Weiss mused about whether such restrictions are fair to parents and suggested that no-kids policies could threaten to turn parents into second-class citizens. ‘As businesses respond to their new breed of …

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Two months later, are you sticking with Netflix, I mean Qwikster?

You may recall that about two months ago, Netflix raised the price of their services. Well that hike didn’t go over too well with consumers and Sunday their CEO offered an apology.

From The Washington Post:

“Remember when Netflix was a business that cheaply provided a service people wanted? Now Netflix and Qwikster are two businesses that less cheaply provide services that people only kind of want.

On Sunday night, the CEO of Netflix announced, in what may go down in history as the World’s Worst Apology Letter, that Netflix is sorry about doubling the price subscribers had to pay and, by the way, it is now dividing into two businesses, one to supply online video, the other — named Qwikster — to continue mailing you DVDs in red envelopes.”

The Washington Post editorial offered a biting commentary on what the company is really trying to do and how they feel the company has failed its customers. They wrote what they thought the CEO’s letter was really saying.

So I …

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Has your child had the whooping cough? Study shows vaccine not lasting as long as doctors thought

A new study has found that the whooping cough vaccine appears to lose its effectiveness after just three years – much sooner than doctors believed.

From The Associated Press:

“I was disturbed to find maybe we had a little more confidence in the vaccine than it might deserve,” said the lead researcher, Dr. David Witt, chief of infectious disease at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in San Rafael, Calif. Witt presented his findings Monday at the American Society for Microbiology conference in Chicago.

The study was done in California, where whooping cough vaccinations are a hot-button issue. The state had a huge spike in whooping cough cases last year, during which more than 9,100 people fell ill and 10 babies died. California schools have turned away thousands of middle and high school students this fall who haven’t gotten their booster shot.

Government health officials recommend that children get vaccinated against whooping cough in five doses, with the first shot at age …

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Have you ever tried to turn your spouse off on purpose?

I have yet to see the Jason Bateman/Ryan Reynold’s movie “The Change-Up,” where a hot-to-trot bachelor changes bodies with a married man. (It got terrible reviews this summer.) However, Michael and I are still cracking up about one scene in the trailer.

In the scene Ryan Reynolds in is the body of his married friend Jason Bateman, and he thinks he’s getting ready to get some from Bateman’s sexy wife Leslie Mann. Before coming to bed, she sits down on the toilet and says “I need to cool it on the Thai food” and then she just lets loose on the toilet. (it’s toward the end of the trailer above.)

Reynolds in Bateman’s body is so grossed out listening to her that he doesn’t want to have sex with her when she comes to bed.

So it got me thinking, I wonder if women ever try to purposely turn their husbands off to avoid having sex? Maybe it’s just one night, maybe it’s many nights. Have you ever tried to purposely gross your husband out or turn him off from having sex …

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Pat Robertson says: OK to divorce spouse with Alzheimer’s!

The Associated Press is reporting that religious broadcaster Pat Robertson told his “700 Club” viewers that divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer’s is justifiable because the disease is “a kind of death.”

From The AP:

“During the portion of the show where the one-time Republican presidential candidate takes questions from viewers, Robertson was asked what advice a man should give to a friend who began seeing another woman after his wife started suffering from the incurable neurological disorder.

‘I know it sounds cruel, but if he’s going to do something, he should divorce her and start all over again, but make sure she has custodial care and somebody looking after her,’ Robertson said.”

“The chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network, which airs the ‘700 Club,’ said he wouldn’t ‘put a guilt trip’ on anyone who divorces a spouse who suffers from the illness, but added, ‘Get some ethicist besides me to give you the answer.’ ”

“Most Christian denominations …

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Dad blogger chronicles son’s school lunch — every day!

The food editor for The Associated Press, J.M. Hirsch, is documenting what he sends his second-grade son for lunch every day in a blog. The blog is called “Lunch Box Blues: 180 days. 180 meals. Making it out … well fed.”

Hirsch describes himself as a dorky dad trying to feed his son a great dinner and pack him a lunch he’ll eat and one that Hirsch can feel good about. (That’s the goal – something they’ll eat that is actually good for them.) He has also has written a cookbook called “High Flavor, Low Labor: Reinventing Weeknight Cooking.”

Hirsch has some stringent guidelines for what he is willing to send his son.

From “Lunch Box Blues”:

“Because I refuse to send my son to school with a Lunchable. Or an Uncrustable. Or even a day-after-day-after-day homemade PB&J. Because I want my son’s lunch to be fun and nutritious, and I don’t think one must be sacrificed for the other. Because I don’t believe in “kid food” vs. “adult food,” just real food. …

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Can a family go Vegan? How do you pull it off?

I have a friend whose husband wants the family to start eating vegan. My friend isn’t quite sure how to pull it off.

Vegan is different than vegetarian. Some might say it is an extension.

From Vegan.org:

“why VEGAN? Veganism, the natural extension of vegetarianism, is an integral component of a cruelty-free lifestyle. Living vegan provides numerous benefits to animals’ lives, to the environment, and to our own health–through a healthy diet and lifestyle.”

“what is a VEGAN? A vegan (pronounced VEE-gun) is someone who, for various reasons, chooses to avoid using or consuming animal products. While vegetarians choose not to use flesh foods, vegans also avoid dairy and eggs, as well as fur, leather, wool, down, and cosmetics or chemical products tested on animals.”


On making the transition to Vegan:

“EATING VEGAN In starting the transition to a vegan diet, there are a few different strategies. Some people shift into a vegan diet slowly, starting …

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Should cheerleaders’ skirts be shorter than school standard?

A principal in San Jose, Calif., is cracking down on her school’s cheerleading squad for their skirts being too short and not in line with the school’s rules.

Skirts and shorts at the school are supposed to be lower than mid-thigh, which is the pretty common standard. (You usually hear it has to reach the tip of the middle finger.)

From Yahoo Rivals:

“As first reported by the San Jose Mercury News, the move to make cheerleaders wear sweats under their uniforms was enforced so they could fall in line with a dress code that requires all skirts or shorts to stretch lower than mid-thigh. As you can see in the photo at right, the Piedmont cheerleaders’ custom-tailored uniforms come relatively close to achieving that benchmark, but (Principal Traci) Williams declared that they didn’t quite hit it, leading to the necessary adjustments.”

“Administrators feel that they have a valid reason for stepping up enforcement of the miniskirt ban. While standards in teen clothing in …

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