Category Archives: News

October Is Domestic Violence Awareness Month


Rice
Ray and Janay Rice on May 1, 2014 arriving at the Atlantic County Criminal Courthouse. (photographer: Mel Evens-AP photo)

In the wake of the domestic violence reports with Ray Rice, former NFL player for the Baltimore Ravens, DomesticViolence Month is just around the corner starting in October. It is sad to see that domestic violence still a common occurrence, and that many are so surprised by the violent act.

Janay Rice has released an apology for her part in the “cringe” worthy scene caught on the elevator surveillance video released by TMZ. In hindsight it cannot be easy for the abused  to leave  an abuser. Knowing this, I was still shocked she should defend her man so adamantly to the point of being upset with the media, NFL, and the horrified public who sympathized with her plight. I must admit that I became angry, and suddenly became unsympathetic. However, after thinking about it, and seeing some images of Janay Rice walking eyes down I realized I had no room to judge. Then there was the article published by Huffington Post titled, #WhyIStayed Stories Reveal Why Domestic Violence Survivors Can’t ‘Just leave’, which explains why the abused tend to stay or seemingly support their partner’s behavior.

For many, domestic violence is behavior hard to accept, and hearing an abused person downplaying it and attacking others for punishing the abuser is even more confusing. Domestic violence leaves emotional and psychological scars along with physical reminders of abuse. According to the National Network To End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), a 24 hour study in 2009 showed that domestic violence programs served around 65,000 daily along 23,000 phones calls answered by crisis hotlines daily. Imagine these are the incidents reported and acknowledged. NNEDV has a FAQ to help people understand what occurs in a relationship filled with domestic violence, and the stigma that still exists with it today.

Domestic violence touches everyone regardless of sex, class, education, or race. A 2001 study by the US Bureau of Justice Statistics showed, that while 85% were female victims at least 15% included gay and lesbians relationships and men who were abused by female partners. In many cases there are signs leading to an abusive relationship, but they can be so subtle a person may not realize it until it’s too late. The best way to avoid an abusive relationship is to be aware of the signs. Some examples from NNEDV are:

  • They insist on moving too quickly into a relationship.

  • They can be very charming and may seem too good to be true.

  • They insist that you stop participating in leisure activities or spending time with family and friends.

  • They are extremely jealous or controlling.

  • They do not take responsibility for their actions and blame others for everything that goes wrong.

  • They criticize their partner’s appearance and make frequent put-downs.

  • Their words and actions don’t match.

Domestic violence does not have to be a part of your life. If you or anyone you know is in a domestic violent relationship call for help. Give yourself a voice again.

For help and assistance call the U.S. National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.

  • Hotline advocates are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year to provide confidential crisis intervention, safety planning, information and referrals to agencies in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Assistance is available in English and Spanish, with access to more than 170 languages through interpreter services.

Finally Jumping on the Twitter Bandwagon


Continue reading Finally Jumping on the Twitter Bandwagon

Dallas Star Larry Hagman, Dead Of Cancer, 81


 

Dallas Star Larry Hagman, Dead Of Cancer, 81.

Another great icon has passed, RIP Larry Hagman. Larry Hagman played the infamous schemer of all schemers, J.R. Ewing. See how TNT will handle his loss with the second season première airing on TNT network January 28th.

One Hundred and One Nights- Book Review


Author Benjamin Buchholz weaves a touching story, with twists and turns, in One Hundred And One Nights. You can feel the anguish coming through Abu Saheeh, the book’s main character.

His return to his homeland Iraq gives Abu cause to review his life past and future. Abu’s story tells heart-wrenching stories of the different people in his new place of residence in Iraq bordering on Kuwait.

Abu feels like a foreigner among his own people. It doesn’t help that he is new to the a city that is stuck in limbo.

With the Americans still using their roads to continue a war in the distance, yet so close. Abu’s days are disrupted unexpectedly by a young girl, whose penchant for all things American, borders on blasphemy in their Muslim world.

But as the story unfolds we wonder if people are right to be skeptical of Abu. Abu’s is a stranger with secrets and a mission. The question is whose side is he on?

Commemorate The Lives Of Those Lost In The Tragedy For All Nations


 

9/11 Memorial
9/11 Memorial (Photo credit: Wade Brooks)

 

It is  9/11 and my thoughts and prayers are with the friends and families who have been left without the ones they cherishes the most. Regardless who caused the tragedy the outcome remains the same. The tragedy was not prejudice in who it took only that it did. Remember their lives and celebrate it.

Our dead are never dead to us, until we have forgotten them.
George Eliot

 

 

To Ring Or Not To Ring? That is the question.


Wedding ring, Byzantium, 7th c. AD, nielloed gold.
Wedding ring, Byzantium, 7th c. AD, nielloed gold. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Weddings, marriage, and babies are the things that many people look forward to in life. Regardless if male or female eventually a good percentage of people go on to marry sometime in their life. Oh, the feeling of bliss, of upcoming nuptials. There is a symbolic gesture from the beginning with the gift of the engagement ring which eventually becomes the wedding ring. The ring worn by both people in the marriage tells the world, “I belong to someone and they to me”. Sigh.

Then comes my 19 year-old teen saying that when he marries he will NOT where a ring. Gasp! My mind was blown away, when he continued his diatribe to marriage by insisting he would not wear a ring, but his wife would. Oh the shock of it all was almost too much to bare. I couldn’t believe that the one child of mine whose sensitivity was so palpable at times would make such a statement. After I got over the initial shock I asked him why he didn’t want to wear his wedding ring. His statement was as simple as his announcement, why? He and his wife knew they were married and that was all that counted.

Well, I suppose his statement was true enough. Wedding ring or no wedding ring  a couple was still married, right? Why did we even have wedding rings in the first place? Wedding rings have been in existence since Egyptian times. Whenever I meet someone my eyes usually falls first to their ring fingers. Are they married or are they single. Why? Because, encroaching on someone else’s person is not the thing to do. I believe that both parties should wear a wedding ring. The wedding ring symbolizes a couples love for each other. Of course, some people don’t feel that they need to announce to the world they are married and I suppose this should be okay too, right? To each his own?

Sigh, to ring or not to ring? A traditional symbolic thing which tells the world you are loved. Are there women out there that would rather not wear a wedding ring? Are the old traditions becoming stale? My son told me that wearing a ring would not change the love he felt for his wife and that his love for her is more important than a piece of metal. He makes a good point as children often do and as parents we are quick to dismiss. It is the love and bond between a man and women that is the most important thing, and even the best ring cannot change a true love bonding. Maybe todays world is too focused on the ring and not enough on the actual marriage. Maybe the divorce rate could be lowered if tradition was not the main issue of a marriage proposal, but instead with thoughts of spending a life time together.

Marriage contract
Marriage contract (Photo credit: Center for Jewish History, NYC)

 

“So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s going to be really hard; we’re gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me… everyday.”
― Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook

 

TODAY Moms – TIME’s breast-feeding toddler cover spurs shock, talk


WPA poster promoting breast feeding and proper...
WPA poster promoting breast feeding and proper child care, showing mother nursing baby. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

TODAY Moms – TIME’s breast-feeding toddler cover spurs shock, talk.

Time Magazine’s new cover is causing a stir among mothers everywhere although breastfeeding has been around forever. Noblewomen hired wet-nurses to breast feed their babies and many women in capable of breastfeeding have done the same long before the invention of the baby bottle. Why has breastfeeding become the “ugly” word in child care? What are you’re feelings on this subject? Do you agree with Dr. Bill Sears and his wife’s idea on attachment parenting, which they explain in their book, The Baby Book?  As a mother myself, I don’t feel a mother needs to breastfeed into the toddler years to form a strong bond. On the other hand, I did let my children sleep in my bed with me and did not even bother buying a crib. In fact, at 14 and 15 years of age my daughters still like to climb into bed with me and my husband on a Saturday morning.

I posted this article on my Facebook page and a friend of mine put down her own thoughts about the Time Magazine’s breastfeeding cover. Here is what she said.

“The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that the world average for breastfeeding is 4.2 years and they recommend that all children be breastfed for at least two years. Would it be better to give your 3-year-old a cheeseburger and milk shake? The act of breastfeeding can be seen as a type of meditation and relaxation. I wish we could be all more open about it! I support every mother that decides to nurse their children longer than average. Every mother knows what is best for their child. I nursed my 1st son for one year. And my 2nd son for 3 years. Nobody can tell you when it is best to stop. When my son got really sick when he was 2 1/2 years old, he had to be hospitalized. The only thing that stayed in his little body was breast milk. And his recovery was very good. It just proved to me again, that there is nothing better than nursing.” Y. Reyna

What are your thoughts about attachment parenting and Time Magazine’s cover? Start a discussion and leave your comments in the, “Speak out, let’s hear your voice” box.

National Museum
National Museum (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Related Articles:

http://www.breastfeedingmomsunite.com/2009/04/wet-nursing-history/

http://www.attachmentparenting.org/

http://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/

What Killed Soldier In Afghanistan Who Died While Skyping With His Wife? : The Two-Way : NPR


Soldier in Afghanistan with M224
Soldier in Afghanistan with M224 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What Killed Soldier In Afghanistan Who Died While Skyping With His Wife? : The Two-Way : NPR. By Mark Memmott

Beauty is in the eye of the Disorder


Celebrity news, reality TV, and Toddler & Tiaras. Wait, did I just add toddler to this list? Yes, the need to be the fairest of them all begins with toddlers. There really is a reality show Toddlers and Tiaras, which shows pageant mom and dads dressing up their children and encouraging the tots to be the best of best. But this is not a post to attack the show; just the message it sends to young girls and the population in general. Everyday the media bombards the general public with images of celebrity photos which have been either airbrushed or photo shopped to perfection. These perfect images are then shown to impressionable teens and young adults, who wish to emulate the people they are seeing in the photos. Reality shows such as Jersey Shore, projecting image as it’s main focus adds to the burden of being beautiful in today’s world. Unfortunately, some young people and even older people may fall into the trap of trying to keep up with these unattainable images.

According to an article from the Academic Psychiatry Journal 2006 in a 1994 survey 40% of nine year olds have been on a diet. A diet at nine years old? To me that’s unbelievable and sad. The National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders states,”47% of girls in 5th-12th grade reported wanting to lose weight because of magazine pictures, 69% of girls in 5th-12th grade reported that magazine pictures influenced their idea of a perfect body shape, and eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.” This means that more than half of young teen girls are trying to emulate the images they see in the magazine and other media.

What prompted me to write this blog was an MSN Now: What’s Trending article titled, Pic of actress without make up reveals blemishes, real beauty. The article shows actress AnnaLynne McCord of the popular show “90210” with her makeup on and without makeup; blemishes and all. The difference is astounding and empowering. McCord states how she woke up one morning and was over Hollywood’s perfection requirement. I say, Bravo to AnnaLynne McCord for helping to turn the tide and working to empower men and women to love themselves as they are. Kudos should also be given to Vogue which announced it would not feature underaged girls or girls with eating disorders. The website thechive.com in a post titled, The Louis Vuitton models pose without makeup.Still hot?, shows 40 images of Louis Vuitton models without makeup.

Checking out the pictures, the models look like any other young girl out on the street, except some of the model looked as if they tried getting their lips plumped up. I could only envision actress Lisa Rinna before her lip reduction surgery. Also, many of the models looked dis-proportioned with large heads and small thin bodies. I believe when actors, actress, models, and others in the entertainment business speak out against unnatural body images it means taking a step towards eliminating eating disorders. I too have fallen into the “fat trap”, and caused myself much suffering trying to keep up with images put out by the media by fad dieting and excessive exercise. Recently while driving to work a song came on the radio by a boy band called, One Direction. Ever heard of them? I love their song, What Makes You Beautiful. The lyrics are simply put:

If only you saw what I can see
You’ll understand why I want you so desperately
Right now I’m looking at you and I can’t believe
You don’t know
Oh oh
You don’t know you’re beautiful
Oh oh
That’s what makes you beautiful

So it seems that  wisdom can comes out of the mouth of babes. It is my deepest hope that AnnaLynne McCord’s efforts are not in vain. There are too many young lives that need to know the truth about body image, and that is no one is perfect, not even celebrities.

Image
Kim Kardashian. Image from http://www.safm.com.au/

Here more entertainers who have embraced the natural look during a photo shoot and websites about eating disorders.

Paula Patton Poses With No Make Up For People’s Most Beautiful Women Issue

Jaime Lee Curtis Hates Hollywood’s “conspiracy” Against Women

Eating Disorder Coalition- Facts About Eating Disorders: What Research Shows

Eating Disorders in a Disordered Culture: Stories Told

Asian/Pacific Islander American Heritage Month


May is designated for Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month. I am happy to be a part of US ARMY Garrison Hohenfels event on Thursday May 24, 2012. I cannot wait for everyone to taste my Pad Thai.

           Over the years Asian American and Pacific Islanders have contributed to shaping United States history. Many Asian/Pacific Islander Americans fought in wars against oppression and have been loyal allies through many of America‘s long hard years. Click on this link to find out more about Asian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

         At the API event anyone who attends can experience the culture and values of the Asian/Pacific Islander lifestyle. The event displays the cultures of each country participating, as well as having samples of food and cultural entertainment. Check your local area newspapers or google where an API event is happening near you.