Wednesday, April 13, 2011


My 6 year-old son has had a fever since Monday, he is missing the kindergarden presentation, and the kids have off from school next week, and I have my final term paper due on my birthday in less than weeks, but have not had any time to work on it this week because I have continuously believed that my son's fever would be gone tomorrow and hence spent my time tending to things around the house because once I start on writing the paper I won't have much free time, three days in a row and they are home next week, wait, I did just sign them up for spring break soccer camp, thank god, that at least gives me about three hours a day, well closer to two and a half because we are always late and I have to leave our house about 15 minutes before the camp ends, so yeah we will have to go to the doctor tomorrow, hopefully this will clear up soon we have a really busy weekend like literally seven events/activities planned, and then Bloomfest on Sunday, what a drag it will be if he stays sick ...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


The Down-Low on Dairy & Soy: Magic Bean or Tragic Bean? Both have good and bad qualities, moderation is the key. Despite what most grandmothers would have you believe your body does not need dairy products, you can live fine without them. "The FAO/WHO developed the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score, a method of measuring protein values in human nutrition. Eggs, milk, and soy all score a 1.0, the best possible. Beef scores .92 and peanuts score .52." This statistic shoots down the importance of eating beef to getting enough protein.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Friday, April 08, 2011


Wednesday, April 06, 2011

By Patty Dow, M.A., Life Coach and Parent Educator

It is a loaded word and carries all kinds of moral judgment about the perpetrator. It leaves parents feeling embarrassed or deceived when they realize that their young children are doing it. Often times, parents notice "lying" in their children for the first time around age three. You ask your child a question about school and some wild tale comes out of his or her mouth. You confront your child about the missing cookie, only to be met by denial. In this month's Parenting Tip, I'd like to put some perspective on the subject of lying in young children.

First, let's look at this phenomenon from a developmental perspective. Most children, by age three, are able to carry on conversations. They have learned that there is a give and take in communication and that when they ask questions or make statements, they get responses from others. However, they have only been conversing for a few months. Someone asks them a question, the rule is, they reply. Sometimes they say the first thing that comes to mind. This is not deliberate and malicious lying, but to them, carrying their weight in the conversation.

The next developmental pieces of this puzzle are cognition and retention level. At ages three and four, children do not have a well developed sense of time and they don't always retain information from things that happened earlier. They may legitimately not remember what happened in school TODAY. You ask? They make it up (following the rules of communication - a question requires a response), or give you a blank stare! Sometimes, the things they make up are things that they have heard others say. Again, not malicious or intentional, but it's what comes to mind and they heard someone else say it, so why not?

Frequently, children blur the boundaries between fantasy and reality. They have fantasies in which they catastrophize, or romanticize, sometimes to meet an emotional need that they have. When my daughter, Courtney, was born, we already had a dog named Timber. He was petrified of her and barely began to come near her when she was old enough to throw a ball. Other than those occasional games, he avoided her like the plague. When she was 3 ½, we sadly had to find a new loving home for him because we had to move to a place where animals weren't allowed. When Courtney was 4, she would tell people about her wonderful relationship with her dog and what fast friends they were. She would dreamily tell people, "Timber would follow me everywhere and come over and put his head in my lap while I was watching TV." Lie? Well, definitely not the truth, but somehow, it was to her! Did it harm anyone? Nope. So what did I do? I let it go. As she got older (she is now 21), I told her anecdotally and she got a kick out of it. If your child is blurring fantasy and reality in a way that doesn’t matter, let it go. If your child is blurring fantasy and reality in a way that matters, you don't have to attack or insist. You can gently insert the facts as they tell stories about their lives.

Next, let's look at the intentional side of lying. From fairly early on, we learn that lying a) gets us what we want and b) can act as a form of protection when we fear the disapproval of others. One of the most important things parents can do is MODEL. How many of us use "white" lies; you know… stretch the truth just a little bit? Sometimes we think our reasons are legitimate - we don't want to hurt someone's feelings, or we want to avoid a scene of some type. I am not passing judgment, but it is important to remember that if you value honesty and want to pass that onto your children, they will pick up on it when adults lie to others. Young children are still very concrete in their thinking. They do not distinguish one type of lie from another. They think, "Mommy and Daddy told So-and-So this untrue thing, so it must be okay for me to do the same." Then they try it and get reprimanded for it. It doesn't make much sense in their minds and it hardly seems fair.

The last thought I want to leave you with, is that when your child lies, it isn't directly targeted toward you - it's not PERSONAL. Even if your child is lying intentionally, this is a sign that your child is having difficulty with something, NOT doing it TO YOU! S/he might be having trouble accepting disappointment, or might be very concerned about letting you down. Does this mean that parents don't address it? No, but you will probably have better results in the future if you address it empathically, non-emotionally, and matter-of-factly. Let your child know that you value honesty and that it is okay to make mistakes. Have a discussion and see if you can get to the source of the lie. If you come down too hard on your child, it will probably leave him or her scared. This, in turn, can lead to more lying and a breakdown in communication.

Patty Dow, MA

Life Coach/Parent Educator

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Post from My Social Work Policy Class Blog

Chart shows low tax burden for rich

I was unable to attach the chart to this post so please click on the link below and take a minute to view the chart. “Blue areas represent a historically low tax burden for a specific income level, while red areas represent a historically high burden.”;_ylt=AgzGIvwZ3WbYBe.37rqXmqzCw5R4;_ylu=X3oDMTQ1czQ4ZmMwBGFzc2V0A3libG9nX3RoZWxvb2tvdXQvMjAxMTAzMTYvY2hhcnQtc2hvd3MtbG93LXRheC1idXJkZW4tZm9yLXJpY2gEY2NvZGUDbXBfZWNfOF8xMARjcG9zAzQEcG9zAzQEc2VjA3luX3RvcF9zdG9yaWVzBHNsawNjaGFydHNob3dzbG8-

The chart basically shows that despite the repeated claims from the lower taxes crowd that taxes are extra ordinarily high, and that the country is broke due to the pensions of greedy public workers like fire fighters, police officers and teachers, the tax burden on Americans is actually lower for the vast majority of Americans thank it has been 50 years.

The wealthy are being allowed to keep more of their money compared to any time in the last 100 years except for brief periods around 1930 and 1990. With this in mind it appears that our federal government’s shortage of funds may be due to the lack of funds being brought in by taxes and not solely public workers pensions, or over spending on social programs. The high cost of our military actions, and all other governmental costs have not been counteracted by the trickle down effect historically low tax rates over the last quarter of a century. Lower taxes have not caused the affluent to create new businesses and in turn new jobs at a rate that has any significant affect on our overall economy.

Basically the current tax rate is low compared to what it was durning the post WWII economic boom under Eisenhower, and even lower than it was during the Reagan Era. The lower taxes mantra reminds me of the concept of Manifest Destiny, no matter what gains its adherents achieve, the only acceptable next step is more, more tax cuts now, more land then, an insatiable appetitive for more that accepts no compromise.