Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sunday, June 28, 2009

New Bookshelf

I just found a new application, and thought I would check it out and share it with you. The idea of having an online bookshelf is just funny! I just can’t have enough books.

If you haven’t been to my house you may not have known this about me, but I have a serious book collection. If a collection is ten or more of similar objects grouped together in an organized fashion, then it’s a collection... though my friends have mentioned words like “obsessive” “Huge” and “bigger than the public library”.

I asked my boys to put together a database for me so my books could be catalogued. Ever since I was in first grade and learned about the big wooden box with the tiny drawers I have wanted to have books and organize them. Now that I have enough, we’re all technologically improved. It’s still a lot of work.... to get them all organized. The boys were very excited at first then realized I meant ALL the books... and they became a little wary, unwilling to even begin on a task that looks truly overwhelming. I thought it would still be good to get them organized and inventoried... but they are realistic with the amount of time it would take to accomplish this.

How nice if you could just get the books to pre-organize themselves (which originally I was thinking, buying library copies with the Dewey Decimal coding already conveniently completed. Ahhh.... Which brings me to Kindles. Of course the idea intrigued me immediately. You can download books to the Kindle instantly and carry them around with you. You can carry 20 or 30 books and even more in the same area a paperback used to fit. Ah, now that has possibilities! Since, however, I was raised on paper and ink, I still have doubts that reading from a screen will be quite as satisfying... I am a digital immigrant, after all, and though I do attempt to adjust and learn upcoming technology, it’s not my first language, and reading is for fun for me at this point. I did notice that the downloads are just as much as buying and shipping the same book at times, which of course does nothing to sway the consumer in me.

So until they make it impossible for me to say no, I will keep my old friends on the shelves and take good care of them, since I know they have taken good care of me, educating, entertaining, and enlightening me for many years past and hopefully for many years to come. Enjoy the shelf of my current reads and I will hopefully update it often!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Change can bring fear

It was amazing to see all the presidential stuff and how much Obama wanted to bring change. I think lots of us like some kind of change, but lots of change fast is usually not good. Driving is good, crashing is bad. Sometimes getting a lot of money at one time can even be bad. Who knows. Lots of people see the huge governmental changes and are freaking out. I have had some freaky moments too... Some of it comes to pass, some of it gets bogged down in bureaucracy. Sometimes people vote and judges overturn. Sometimes justice is not possible. You can't do everything for everybody. I am sure everyone has done something nice for someone who didn't say thank you, and you think twice about doing something nice for them again... or we measure who is deserving (ill children) and who isn't (non-working -by choice- healthy person with big screen TV). The government doesn't always have that concern. They want to shower everyone with money. Well, that's nice until you realize it's YOUR money getting showered on big-screen-tv man.
There are other things that upset people lately. The fear that Christianity is being driven out of our country. I got an email today about "in God we trust" not being on the presidential dollar coins. Ok, it's NOT on the coin face but it IS on the edge. Squeezing "God" onto the edge of the money doesn't seem very nice to some... it does look like the next step is OFF. It's a small thing.... but a change that looks ominous. But get real people! If you want to be scared, start reading up on what the value of the dollar is doing and what will happen if we go to the Amero and share currency with Mexico and Canada. If you want to be scared, look at the amount of debt China is holding.
Not to be completely depressing, and I am not a financial advice giver by any means, but there are a few things you can do to try to keep America from becoming something you don't recognize.
1. Read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Keep reading all the other amendments that have been put on the books.
2. Read some books by founding fathers and try to discover the intent they had to found our country on solid ground.
3. Start reading legislation. It looks like Chinese at first but try to muddle through and educate yourself. Pick a subject that is important to you or an amendment that stirs you and see what's being proposed that violates the spirit of the amendment... become educated and try to learn why the legislation is being proposed - and who will be hurt, and who will be helped by it.
4. Attend local government meetings. It won't always make sense at first but eventually you start to see the reasons why people do the things they do. Call them when you think they're wrong. At Public Forum time, ask your questions.
5. Look around at websites, news sites, and forums, you-tube etc. but remember it's not always factual.
6. Quit believing all the stupid emails gaged to make the masses terrified, and don't pass them along unless you are certain they are valid.
7. Writing your congressman may seem futile, but every letter counts. Some local leaders get a lot less mail than you might think. Go ahead and write. Please write in such a way that they want to respond to you and won't dismiss you as a "nut".
8. If you do get involved, be persistent and try to see it through. It takes time to figure out how to make legislation happen. It's different everywhere and in every level.

In the meantime I am still collecting dollar coins and watching the news on the value of our money. We've already been working at lowering our debt. It's always a good idea in any economy.