Friday, April 24, 2009

Going All Political on Your Ass Part Deux

Hmmm, I didn't get too many responses to my last post, but I can't be sure if that's because the topic is too controversial or because no one gives a crap! Either way, here's your...

Next topic for discussion: Socialized Healthcare

I am not a fan of the idea of socialized healthcare. What I do support is universal healthcare (and there is a difference!). Single payer universal health care is a health care payment system, not a health care delivery system. Health care providers would be in fee for service practice and are not government employees, which would be socialized medicine. This is more a revision of the insurance system than it is the health care system as a whole. I feel this is the best compromise to make sure all of our citizens have access to health care, but we can maintain our competitive system which encourages innovation and research and development. I find it ridiculous that we live in the richest nation in the world but somehow cannot afford to protect our most vulnerable citizens.

Personally, I like the system Massachusetts has. There citizens are required to have health insurance, but the state government covers part of or all of the premium cost for low income families (under $32,000/year). This system might be a good compromise for the time being since it is unlikely Congress will ever be able to overcome its inertia/ineptitude and fight back against the insurance company lobbyists (and money) to push true health care reform.

- Truly encapsulating the American entrepreneurial spirit
- I love this site. Thanks to BIL John the Armenian Deal Hound for turning me on to it. It's also where I found Bacon Salt.
- The World Digital Library is just starting out, but I think once it becomes a little more populated it will be an invaluable resource for both researchers and lay history nerds alike ;)

Going All Political on Your Ass

So you may have guessed that the last two posts were actually written by my ghost blogger ;) I have been so busy with work (yay!) and going here that I haven't had much of a chance to write lately. So today I'm going to open up the floor for discussion. Topic: higher tax rates for the "rich." It is currently under debate in Washington as to whether or not families with combined incomes of over 250K per year should receive a tax hike of, I believe, about another 5%. I ask because #1 I hope to be one of those families some day and #2 because I currently make a pretty decent living (nowhere near $250K a year but a lot more than the median income in the US) and I already pay over 30% of my paycheck in various taxes. The tax hike is intended to affect those families who are considered to be in the top 5% of earners in the US, but, personally, I feel that $250K a year (of a combined family income) doesn't really make you rich. When I think of rich, I think of people making more like $25 million a year. I might make what seems to be a good deal of money, but I only take home 70% of what I make. I have five children to support with daycare, health insurance and college to save for. I also have ageing in-laws with health problems and no savings to speak of. I will likely have to begin supporting them some time in the near future. I've not fully formed an opinion on this matter myself yet because I am of two minds, and I am really curious to hear what the people I care for most have to say on the subject. Okay, I'm getting verklempt, discuss amongst yourselves...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Family Time

Unfortunately, we won't be going to this :(
However, everyone already knows that someone in our family and has seen Damian, Ziggy, and Stephen Marley seperately in concert at least 20 times, none of which, I would ever bring my children too ;) but their music is amazing!! At any rate, if your looking for great music that the family can enjoy (which is hard to find these days)..check this cd out. This is Ziggy Marley's third release and it was especially released for families with children. He has done a lot of work in the past and recently with the likes of Stevie Wonder, Common, Jack Johnson, Willie Nelson, Ben Harper and many is produced by Tuff Gong and his brother, Stephen Marley.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I love football and popcorn.

Schedule are the predictions

1 Mon, Sept. 14 at New England Patriots ESPN 7 p.m. WIN
2 Sun, Sept. 20 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers FOX 4:05 p.m. WIN
3 Sun, Sept. 27 vs. New Orleans Saints FOX 4:05 p.m. WIN
4 Sun, Oct. 4 at Miami Dolphins CBS 4:05 p.m. WIN
5 Sun, Oct. 11 vs. Cleveland Browns CBS 1 p.m. WIN
6 Sun, Oct. 18 at New York Jets CBS 4:15 p.m. WIN
7 Sun, Oct. 25 at Carolina Panthers CBS 4:05 p.m. WIN
8 Sun, Nov. 1 vs. Houston Texans CBS 1 p.m. WIN
9 Bye
10 Sun, Nov. 15 at Tennessee Titans CBS 1 p.m. WIN
11 Sun, Nov. 22 at Jacksonville Jaguars CBS 1 p.m. WIN
12 Sun, Nov. 29 vs. Miami Dolphins CBS 1 p.m. WIN
13 Thu, Dec. 3 vs. New York Jets NFLN 8:20 p.m. (In Toronto): WIN
14 Sun, Dec. 13 at Kansas City Chiefs CBS 1 p.m. WIN

15 Sun, Dec. 20 vs. New England Patriots CBS 1 p.m. WIN
16 Sun, Dec. 27 at Atlanta Falcons CBS 1 p.m. WIN
17 Sun, Jan. 3 vs. Indianapolis Colts WIN

16-0...there you have it!!! GO BILLS!!!

BTW, October 4th in Miami looks like the game were locking in to attend this year.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


*I cannot say that word (or its less eggy counterpart) without picturing Mr. Burns from the Simpsons.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Pardon Mii

Okay, okay, no more job bitching..I mean talk ;) Things are already starting to pick up, and I'm excited about the future. I think they are going to keep me very busy once the kinks get worked out! Anyway, life goes on as usual. Today we went here. It was much, much bigger than our little local market, and there were lots of other foodstuffs that I wish I had brought enough cash to sample! Lots of spices, homemade spreads like hummus, and lots of artisanal breads and cheeses. Too bad I only brought like $15 in cash :( Well, we did come away with some gorgeous zucchini, cantelope,blueberries, mini portabellas (that J picked out over the really delicious looking brussel sprouts...she definately takes after her mama, we loooove our mushrooms!), and some other fruits. We also got a small tub of baba ganoush (a middle eastern eggplant spread), which is fantastic!

In other news, we got a Wii! Yay for Craigslist (I so love that site). Hubs managed to trade some PS3 games + $60 to someone in return for a Wii with two controllers and a bunch of games. The kids had a blast with Wii Ski last night. J&C played for almost 2 straight hours! I like the table tennis and running from the Olympics game. I look forward to spending a shit ton more money on this thing, as I am already coveting Wii Fit, Wii Gold's Gym, Wii Cheer, and Wii Disney DDR (none of which I will be buying for some time, mind you. I do have to try and maintain some kind of sanity in the face of Wi imadness!)

Kid Stuff:

Had to share some cute tidmits from the mind of J. Her vocabulary improves immensely day after day, but her grammatical errors are cause for much amusment on my part. Example:

J: Stop doing that, Mama! Stop doing that or I am annoying you!

What she meant to say was that my humming was annoying her, but I thought he comment was probably accurate even if it wasn't what she intended to say!


- Etsy - a dear friend clued me into this website. It's Ebay as it was truly meant to be!
- Joy of Baking - For some unknown reason I have had the baking itch since we arrived in St Pete. Not sure what is causing it since I am so not a baker, but I have been making cookies left and right for the last few weeks. Today we are making magic bars, yum!
- Memphis-style ribs - I don't have a link for this one, since I memorized the recipe out of my dad's copy of the Barbecue Bible, but I will post my version after Easter (since we are making it for our Easter dinner!)

Monday, April 06, 2009

Brief Update

Okay, so going okay. My office recently was assigned a new mission; something that is pretty new to the DoD in general, so there's no book/checklist on how to do things. This is both good and bad. I'm really excited to get in at the ground floor and help build up capabilities that have never existed before. On the other hand, this is not an area I have any experience with and I am kind of being tossed into the ring with virtually no marching orders (not sure who the real end customers are, what their needs would be, what tools we have available, etc.) and asked to lead (although they haven't decided how they want to break up the office into teams yet). Oh yeah, and they haven't hired anyone else at my level yet either (there are supposed to be two others in the middle management chain), so even if they did decide how they want to organize everyone, there wouldn't be anyone else there to lead them! I know things will eventually fall into place, but I am feeling very antsy. I feel like the gov't is paying me a lot of $$ to basically sit on my ass and entertain myself all day (still no system access), and no one seems at all concerned. I also miss my coworkers a lot (don't tell them, though, as they are already a bunch of egomaniacs ;) One of the best things about my last job was the comraderie we had in the office. I get the feeling that no one in my new office quite knows what to do with me. All of the analysts seem rather wary of being too casual with me (probably because they're concerned that I might end up being their boss - depending on what team they're placed on), and I only rarely see my own boss (he's usually in the secure facility, but I don't have access to that yet since it's taking forever for my clearances to get passed on, grrr!). So I mostly just sit in my office (I have my own office!) and look at stuff on the shared drive to try and get an idea of what it is I might be doing in the near future. Kind of lonely right now :( But, at least they're paying me well! ;)

- Super Cook is an awesome resource for the frugal cook (especially when you are determined to use everything in your pantry before you go food shopping again!) Recently I have made the fried cabbage with bacon (just as yummy and un-clean as it sounds!) and Kathleen's Potatoes Pascal, which were also delicious and just as bad for you as the cabbage!

- Fried oysters! One of the best things about living near the beach is the abundance of fresh seafood, which is probably why I have developed an overwhelming craving for fried oysters! Hubs is not a seafood person in general (he doesn't even really like shrimp!), but he has taken comfort in the fact that Florida is mainly populated by people who have fled the cold of New York, so there is also an abundance of great Wing places. We have a small bar/restaurant just around the corner from our house which has excellent fried oysters and pretty darn good wings (the best he's had since he left NY, says Hubs, but they could use a bit more heat to be perfect!). Hopefully this new penchant I have for using Super Cook (it's like a new challange every day!) will keep me from trying to order oysters every night or I may not be seeing much of the beach (I refuse to buy a bigger bathing suit!)

- - check it out, stylistas!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

What We're Doing Right Now*

*Okay, maybe right not this second, but this sight can be seen in my backyard almost every day :)

In other news, I was trying to find a way to use up my cherry tomatoes and came across this recipe (and with a whole new foodie blog to enjoy!). I changed it up a bit since I didn't have kalamata olives by omitting those & adding in about 10-15 cloves of garlic. It was absolutely delish!
I promise a big, long post with news about the new job sometime this weekend, but until then, console yourself with the fact that you didn't have to get 5 shots today, as poor C did when Hubs took her to the doctor for her school enrollment physical (required by FL law). She was very brave, though, not even one tear (a sharp contrast to the flu shot debacle a few months ago!).