One of my achievements of which I am proud

One of the achievements of which, I think, I am justifiably proud is home schooling my three sons. In the 1980’s we moved quite a bit during their younger years, and I felt it would mean more continuity in their schooling if I home schooled. I am not a teacher by profession so this was quite a challenge. I often had to study up on a subject the night before.

We obtained a curriculum to follow and purchased a computer with the idea that we could get some online tutoring help if needed, but at that time there did not seem to be much available. There were many times when I felt I could have used some assistance, particularly with math and I was very nervous about starting algebra as it held mysteries for me, which I had never really mastered while in school. However we struggled on and eventually settled in a town on Vancouver Island where I was able to enroll the boys in school. The transition went comparatively smoothly. They were 12, 14 and 16 at the time and I was a bit concerned that there might be gaps in their education as I had not been able to find a tutor I could afford.

Nowadays, there are more options for parents to obtain tutoringfor their children and quite inexpensively. After the boys started attending school, they were introduced to the concept of homework that was to be done after school hours. This was not met with delight, I can assure you, from any of us. They thought of it as doing home schooling as well as attending school. I would have welcomed some assistance with their homework as, by then, I was a single parent and working full time, mostly in the evenings and weekends, so I was not always available to help, and anyway they were starting to get into subjects that I had not covered in my years at school.

My eldest son and his wife are now considering home schooling for their boy, not yet in Kindergarten, and I am happy that there are more options for them to get help than I had.

I have received Mariuca’s Superstar Award

I received this award last week from A Nice Place in the Sun by
She has made a list of bloggers she refers to as Superstars! Thanks Ann for thinking of me as one of those bloggers.

I have included these folk plus a few of my own, and I will be popping by to visit these blogs to say Hi. Most of these blogs are completely new to me so it will be like going on vacation to check them all out. I just hope they don’t take too long to load because I can get hung up and can’t comment, but I’ll try.
First Time Dad
Twisted Sister
Eat Your Maths
NoDirectOn(Not: NoDirection)
Jay’s World
Monday Morning Power
The Rising Blogger
Nonsense,Fun,Tears,Happiness,And Anger All Rolled Into One
Kissing The Dogwood
Mary’s Writing Nook
State of Confusion
Dottie’s Place

Heads or Tails #11 – Halloween

Skittles has started a new meme for every Tuesday called visit her blog for instructions. Basically she gives us a word and we can do whatever we like with it. This week appropriately enough it is Halloween.

Halloween was not a harmless holiday in times gone by. People in our modern era are mimicking the witches and Druids of old but Halloween’s origins are in the Druidic cult. A cult so given over to human sacrifice that when the Romans conquered Britain, they wiped out every Druid they could find.

The Druids were called “men of the oaks” and were a strange clan of men who dressed in white robes. The Druids worshiped the “Horned Hunter of the Night.“ Halloween was sacred to the Druids because their sun-god receded to the underworld on October 31st, which is why darkness increased and light decreased according to their reckoning.

As darkness set in on October 31st, the clan of Druids would put on their white robes and hoods. They would carry sickles as they began a torchlight procession. At the beginning of the procession, a male slave was killed and dragged by a rope fastened to his left ankle. The Druids would walk until they came to a house or a village where they shouted the equivalent of “trick or treat.” The treat was a slave girl or any female to be given to the Druids. If the people refused to give a girl as a “treat”, blood was taken from the dead slave and used to draw a hexagram or six-pointed star on the door or wall of the village. Spirits of the “horned hunter of the night” were invoked by the Druids to kill someone in that house or village by fear that night.

If the house or village gave a girl as a “treat”, the Druids put a pumpkin with a face carved in it in front of the door or gate of that place. Inside the pumpkin was a candle made of human tallow to keep evil spirits away. Thus, the Jack-O-Lantern was a sign that you had cooperated with Satan.

The treats or female victims were taken to Stonehenge where they were raped and killed and then sacrificed on the sacred bone-fire until only glowing embers were left. The bone-fire is the origin of the modern day bonfire. As a matter of luck for winter survival, all villagers were expected to use the glowing embers of the bone fire to light their hearths.

So that is the history of Halloween.

View more participants in the “Heads or Tails” meme.

I have a goal

As you know I really enjoy blogging and have decided that I need to get faster internet access, as dial up is causing me to miss so much that others blogs have to offer. So I have decided to blog for money and whatever I earn will go towards the purchase of a satellite dish and monthly payments.

With this goal in mind I applied to Smorty and have been accepted. Smorty is an internet service that brings bloggers and advertisers together. There are so many people blogging today who would like to earn money from doing what they love, and Smorty makes it easy. This doesn’t just mean that I will be putting a lot of advertisements up on my blog, it means that I have to have interesting posts so that more people will come, read, and comment . Hopefully advertisers will see my post and want to use Smorty to advertise their product and more bloggers will get involved.

So why not take the leap like I did and join Smorty and earn some money. This is my first post for Smorty and I am looking forward to writing more.

Christmas is coming and there’s nowhere to shop

Christmas is just around the corner and I have to get some gifts but I have nowhere to shop. There are only two places around here that are close enough to go shopping, and they take an hour to an hour and a half to get there by car. There are not many stores available for selection either. No big name stores and very few little stores either. I love to browse but there are no opportunities.

My middle son is very involved in marketing via the internet and he told me, some time ago, that this is on its way to being the major method of shopping for most folks in a few years. He told me that in Alberta many new high rises and apartment blocks are being built with this in mind, and have large receiving rooms to hold purchases for people until they are picked up.

I have only purchased a few things online so far, but enjoyed taking my shopping cart around the site and buying a couple of Christmas presents last year. It was so convenient. I think it is something I will start doing more, not only for convenience and gas savings but the selection. I wish more stores would get online so I could do my shopping this way.

Camouflage is failing due to global warming

A common trait of many of the animals of the Arctic is the color white. Rabbits and baby seals are white so that predators cannot see them hiding in the snow. Polar bears and foxes are white so that the rabbits and baby seals can’t see them coming toward them in the snow.

However according to a documentary I saw a couple of days ago, that is changing. The documentary specifically mentioned the Arctic Rabbit which scientists are discovering is still changing its color around the time it has always done, but the ground is not yet covered with snow. This is making them easy prey as they stand out clearly against the green and brown tundra.

The fact that the snow is not returning at the usual time is going to affect all the animals who live in the Arctic and other northern regions, whether predator or prey. Global warming is coming too fast for them to adapt.

A rare few may even leave the Arctic to search for prey elsewhere. A polar bear has been documented as leaving its home near the Arctic Sea and has been seen hiking south. I wonder if she could be called a Snow Bird, as many Canadians are labeled who go south for the winter. I can’t say that blame her, can you?

Wandering Polar Bear heads south again

They don’t know what they are missing

I have been going through Sponsored Reviews opportunities and selected one about Computer Training. It was right up my alley, after all I have had my own computer classroom, I have trained quite a few people and even now get asked questions on my blog how to do this and that, and have bailed a few people out of computer messes here in the village.

I was rejected. I would have given them a good advertisement, but they did not take time to check. It was only $5 anyway but I thought it would be an easy one to start.

Anyway I will be generous and give them a plug. CBT

It proves doesn’t it that we should take the time to read what people have to say on their blogs, because we might miss something that could benefit us.

There are several blogs I read that have observations worth pondering, and I love to check technical blogs, because I am always learning. I find Google Reader a good tool for this as I don’t have to visit each and every blog to read their content. However I wish I could comment directly from the Reader, it would save so much time. I am sure I saw a script somewhere about doing just that, but I can’t find it again, or it maybe right under my nose and I am missing it.

Google put up my Page Rank to 4 today, so that is good as far as the advertisers go. I wonder how effective it all is really. Alexa is another one that is meant to be so important, but they only really include those, in their totals, who find your blog via their tool bar, so how accurate can that be.

Anyway I have a favor to ask of you. If you like my blog and are a regular visitor and have not included it in your blog roll would you. I will do likewise with yours. I went through those who have visited me recently and put your link on mine, I hope I haven’t forgotten anyone, let me know. This is a way to improve your ranking, getting links to your blog from another. I find in the social networks like MyBlogLog and BlogCatalog one gets bombarded by people wanting links who never visit your blog and have nothing in common with it.

Found Jiglu yesterday, it is a way to tag your blog, but I did not find it worthwhile, but it may work for you.

I have mentioned AirSet before but they have done some updating on their software so it might be worth a look, it is an online personal organizer.

BTW check out this post about my blog by Bong at Reap Money Online

That’s all folks