Archive for the 'Public Duty' Category

Mail Call!

Monday, April 25th, 2011

Here’s the mail it never fails, it makes me want to wag my tail and yell MAIL!

I no longer have a preschooler, and I only watched that show when I was at my parents, because we don’t have cable, but it was my favorite thing. I loved that show. (Blues Clues just in case you don’t know the song.)

Well, checking the mail is a fun thing in our house. The girls love to check the mail, and a couple years ago we think Lilah left Jon’s house keys in the mail box, which caused me to be really freaked out as I waited for a locksmith to come change our lock that afternoon. So now we’re pretty careful and make sure we get the keys back in our hands.


On Saturday Lilah checked our mail. As she came back into the house she was so excited. “There was only one piece of mail and it’s for me!” Receiving mail is few and far between for our children, so I thought it interesting and checked the return address. It was only the address, no business name, and it had “Return Service Requested.” Odd I thought, and Jon and I both gave each other questioning looks like, “Who is soliciting our kid?”.

Lilah teared it open with glee and Eden patiently looked on and asked what it was. “Hey, there’s another envelope,” which she promptly threw to the floor as she tried to get to the letter’s contents. Then she looked at the letter with a puzzled face, and I hopped over to read it.

It started off:

Las Vegas- Clark County Library

Total Due: $220.26

We have made attempts to contact you about the lost materials and/or outstanding fines on your library account and have received no response.

“Oh, crap!” I think. The library books that we checked out earlier in the year, and I had just thought a couple weeks earlier, that I needed to return, had finally come to haunt me.

The letter went on, if we returned them, the fees would be removed, but we’d have to pay a $10 collection agency fee.

So I jumped in my car and went straight to the library with the 8 books.

I joked that I had received the “letter of shame” and one of the clerks responded, “Oh you received one of our death threats.” I returned the books and paid the fee on Lilah’s account. Supposedly everything is taken care of, but I can’t help but fear that I’ve really ruined something for her. Like there will be a note that this person has a tendency to not return books on time. Or as Jon pointed out, the collection agency’s fee will be on someone’s record. Just what a momma wants to hear.

Anyways, I’ve never been so happy to pay a fee at the library and will never hold onto books for so long, or better yet will return or renew them so they’re not late. It’s true that there is no late fee on children’s books, but that doesn’t mean you can keep them forever.

They will come after you.

2010 Census

Monday, March 8th, 2010

Today in the mail I saw that we had received something from the 2010 Census and I was a little excited.

This would be the first year I’d be the one filling out the information and noting myself and my family on the Census and I thought it was exciting.

We would be a part of those White Caucasian statics, who are married, with children, have a college education, make x amount of money, own a home, are not veterans, are employed, and whatever other information the Census takes note of.

Then I opened the envelope and it was just a letter telling me to look for the upcoming packet.

What a buzz kill.

But we will be one of those White Caucasian statics, who are married, with children, have a college education, make x amount of money, own a home, are not veterans, are employed and whatever other information the Census takes note of.

I feel like I’m a full fledged adult, that is once I fill out my Census, I’ll be a full fledged adult.

I look forward to that packet and the dull uninteresting questions that count me as a person in my city, in my country.

Bring on the 2010 Census!


Thursday, December 31st, 2009

Eden loves dress-up. She loves to wear every item of dress-up clothing, though she has toned down a little, depending on the day. One night she fell asleep on Jon still dressed up and I just had to take a picture, plus Jon was asleep too so it was an added bonus.
She always wears her Sunday shoes for dress-up.


We also made cookies at Carolyn’s house one weekend for the Monday we fed the homeless in November. This is something we started doing with Carolyn’s work a few months back and I think is really good for the girls. Lilah loves it, while Eden mostly just stays attached to my side but there are times where she is ready and willing to hand out cookies and that makes it worth it to me. We bought the girls the heavy coats so they could be nice and warm on the nights we feed the homeless during the winter and possibly make a visit to the snow, but that has yet to be determined.


Lilah helped with each batch and was wanting to be apart of the entire process. She’s by some of the chocolate chip cookies we made.



Lilah with our tub of chocolate chip pumpkin cookies. I think we made around 75 total, or three batches.



Eden with the cookies. She liked bagging the cookies the best.

Moms getting a degree

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Recently a thread was started in my uschooling group about Obama wanting to add more time to the school day and school year. I whole heartedly disagree with this, but that’s also why I homeschool.

The thread got sidetracked at one point and one of the members mentioned the ads for Obama wanting mothers to get an education.

Have you noticed all the ads going around about encouraging moms to go back to school and get a degree? The government will take care of the kids! Have they lost the “strong families make strong countries”?
“Dr. X.” – insert name here, PhD/ND-CTN/CBT
Doctor in Natural and Holistic Health – Quantum Naturopathy / EFT-BSFF /EPFX-QXCI

Being a homeschooling mom with a degree I couldn’t help but respond. I’ve just posted so the discussion is just getting started. I also think it’s interesting that someone with a PhD, or some sort of education in her field, is so against educating mothers.

I’m not going to use quotes for the following because they’re kinda long. I’m also not going to post all the discussion, but just some that I think are valid.

My response:

My response to encouraging moms to go to school.

I think higher education is something to be valued. Education should be valued, and things taught in a college setting are not always easily acquired in the real world and through life learning, though with my degree you could learn a lot in real life and just through text books.

I know the ads are there to encourage people to get a degree so they can work and pay more taxes, but I think they’re really trying to help families who are in lower incomes so they can get a degree and pull themselves up from poverty.

I hope we can all agree that those in poor circumstance who rely heavily upon the government would be better off if they were able to provide for their own families. Most who rely on the government for food and assistance already have their children in the public education system and taking them out is not an option. If they become educated then it helps their children to value education by mere example and it’s shown that children with mothers who have a degree are more likely to get a degree, and then you have a generation who is more capable to take charge of their child’s education and teach from home. I know education does not equal wealth and there are many occupations where a higher education is not needed, and that is fine, but their target audience is not people who are able to make it on their own, but those who are using help and already rely on the government.

I have a degree yet I stay home and teach my children. Having a degree doesn’t mean you’re automatically going to abandon your children to the public education system. It’s about enriching your life and learning more. I also am not alone in having a degree and being a stay at home mom and homeschooling mother.

I know have have a more traditional view towards homeschooling than others in the group, but we’re still trying to instil an ‘always learning’ type thinking, one area I think we agree on.


A response from Ms. A:

But most of the poverty-stricken people wouldn’t be able to afford higher education anyway. And I disagree that the most important thing to poverty-stricken families is more education.
The key is tighter family units. In a tight family unit, where trust and love are primary, kids have the best likelihood of thriving as adults. Happy, loving families produce happy, interested and secure children who grow up able to choose their own paths easily and with courage – with or without money. You can’t do that as well when you come from a background of stress or unhappiness.
Encouraging women to pursue an education, devalues their role as mothers. It says “you’re not important unless you go to work”. Shouldn’t we be supporting woman who are raising children? Can’t those same women still encourage their kids to make good choices – whether or not that includes college?
We were pretty dirt poor for most of my childhood, only getting to a stable (but still below middle class) level when I was a teen. I didn’t finish high school. But my mom was sure to empower me that only I was in control of my success. Without a high school diploma and without a business course, I owned my own business. I know lots of others who did the same.
I’m not saying education is bad or shouldn’t be supported, if it’s the persons choice. But I do feel the motivations behind it most times are unrealistic or unnecessary. And I do feel the government has its own agenda. As do the universities themselves. So many people choose college because they feel it is the only way to be successful. That’s a lie.
I don’t feel higher education should be valued more than any person choosing a life path that best suits them. I think it should be seen as one option among many to creating successful people. Sometimes the best choice. And sometimes inferior. I can’t tell you the number of professionals with a college degree in one thing and a career in something completely different. People that feel they wasted four years of their life and thousands of dollars. Why? Because they falsely thought they had to.
College CAN be great. College can ALSO be a total sham. I don’t think it holds any more value than life itself.
And I don’t think it is as important to raising happy, healthy children, interested in the world and confident in themselves and empowered in their choices.
Those in poverty areas may not be able to afford going to school, but part of the program is to help those women be able to go to college. Right after I posted this I thought about how the target audience might be single mothers who are in lower income situations who would like to provide more for their families and education might be that key for them.

I respectfully disagree that telling anyone they need a degree devalues them and whatever role they have, but I see a degree as a pathway to more information and not necessary as a pathway to more money.

I know that there are many amazing successful and intelligent people out there who have not finished college or even high school and that college can be a total sham if you thought you were going there for one reason and then figured out they couldn’t deliver what they promised. There were many classes I was required to take for my degree and I thought, why the heck am I taking this, then there were classes I was required to take and would not have on my own, but learned so much. I went knowing I was just receiving my education because I wanted to learn and not because I was going to use it to get a job. In fact if I ever work, my degree would probably be useless since I don’t “use” it as a mother. I don’t find that my role has been belittled by me wanting a degree.

I think any woman who is a wonderful, caring mother deserves my respect, whether she has a degree of any sort or not.

I think the key is being well learned in whatever you choose to do so you can succeed, and well learned can easily be replaced by well educated. I know a higher education is not for everyone, but learning is and we should all be learning whether we chose to learn through life or through a more formal setting.

I agree a strong family is needed to help children grow into amazing and secure adults. There are strong families in both lower and high incomes, there are weak families in both high and low incomes, but children in a lower income have a less stable home life due to financial stresses or other stresses in the home and thus are less able to grow into an empowered adult.

I do think the government is becoming all knowing and butting in where they shouldn’t. It would rather have the children in school and teach that money is success than to teach parents on how to be a good parent, but what if it offered classes on being a good parent? It would meet the same, if not a lot more, opposition because everyone has their own opinion on being a good parent and how a good family unit is created.

The problem you introduce is how do we provide a good stable family environment to every child so they can become whatever their potential is?

So how?

I don’t know because I know a lot of idiots out there who don’t care about their kids, none of which are in this group. 😉

How I’m doing and what’s on my mind.

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

Somehow we got a bug at Pine Valley. Sam’s daughters have had runny or stuffy noses, and Lilah and I have sore throats and Eden’s developed a fever today. 🙁

Today is my errand day, but since we’re all a little under the weather the television has been on a lot. I am trying to keep it educational, like we’re watching our The Best of The Electric Company and later it will be PBS, but like Word Girl and other educational shows, not the ones on feelings and how to treat people, though those are useful too I guess.

Today Lilah and I watched the President’s address to students. I’m not sure what all the craziness was about and why I’ve seen parents compare the speech to sex education. Such as, “Talk to my kids in my presence. They have to have a signed permission slip to show a movie or talk about sex in class, but not for this? Whatever! My children will not be present.”  This comment is a total fallacy and I can’t list all the things wrong with it.

We aren’t in our children’s presence constantly so we can’t monitor everything that is said to them, but hey it’s a recorded speech and if a parent was worried about the president indoctrinating their child and making them a socialist then they can discuss the speech with them, not shield them from every kind of thinking that is against their own. I saw it as a very positive motivational speech that any person might give to our students and most would aggree with on the whole.

I do agree that we are entitled to having a say in what our children are taught or exposed to, one reason I homeschool, but sometimes I think opposing something positive that someone has to say just because we do not agree with other areas of thought they have is ridiculous. Are they afraid Obama might become a role model and their child might emulate him by working hard at school and going to great colleges?

Anyways, I thought it was a wonderful speech and I hope that those who don’t agree with the presidents politics can agree that going to school and getting an education is a good thing for both the individual and the country.


Monday, July 13th, 2009

Jon and I recently got the recycling bins provided by our local recycling plant. We’ve had them for about two months and our trash output has dropped dramatically. It helps us feel good that we’re able to recycle the annoying weekly adds we get, and all the plastic containers we use, if they’re able to be recycled by our local plant.

You see, our local plant only takes things with the recycling number 1 or 2. Anything higher has to go to the dump. It’s nice to see all we can recycle, but sometimes I feel bad that my individual yogurt cups are a 5 and cannot be recycled. Jon’s taken to making his own yogurt, and that has helped us be more green since he’s uses mason jars, and those are washable, instead of us having to throw away a plastic container every week. (He decided to make his own yogurt because he thought it would be cool, and it saves us a lot of money, but mostly because he thought it would be cool.)

Anyways, we have to clean the containers which held food before we put them out to be recycled. I think this is required by the plant, but more importantly it helps keeps away bugs and strong odors.

Today as I emptied our peanut butter jar, really plastic container, I found myself hoping that it had a 3 or higher on the bottom so I wouldn’t have to wash it out.

No such luck.

Sometimes I wish recycling was a little less sticky.

My letter

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

Dear (enter legislator’s name here),

As a born Nevadan and a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Governor Gibbons proposed budget cuts to the higher education system worries me.

My husband currently is attending UNLV and is studying towards his Masters degree. If the proposed budget cuts go through our future will be greatly diminished in the opportunities that he is able to have in the workplace, for who knows if his program will survive the proposed cuts and if he will be able to graduate in 2011.

I also have two children that I am raising here in Nevada and plan on sending to state universities, if we see ourselves here for that long. Even if we do not live in Nevada long enough to send our two daughters to the universities here, I know preserving Nevada’s higher education system is worth it to whatever students who are fortunate enough, and have the drive,  to attend college here in the future.

Please know that I am willing to pay for higher education as a citizen of Nevada.

Governor Gibbons said “Nevada government should meet the needs of the people; people should not meet the needs of Nevada government.”

That makes no sense because the government and the people are the same, and the needs of the people must be met by the people.

We pay for state services because they are needed, not always personally needed, but as a whole are needed to help our state and the people herein.

The education system is needed to help the future of Nevadans stay bright. Without an educated population the state will eventually shrivel and die. By cutting costs now we will lose teachers and professors and those who are needed to teach our population and they will not come back once the money comes back, they will be lost forever and possibly never replaced.

My husband also works for UNLV and if he loses his job we will be forced to leave our home state and build our future elsewhere and invest in another state’s future.

Governor Gibbons has promised no new taxes, but the proposed 6% income decrease is a tax, and though we do not live paycheck to paycheck and can weather  a 6% decrease many of our teachers cannot, nor should. The state employees who provide the services to the people should not be the only people fighting to keep the services and the only ones “taxed.”

Please know that education is important to Nevadans and that we know now is a time to invest in our future. Please do not support Governor Gibbons proposed cuts and know that the time to tax is now, so we can save our childrens future and the future of Nevada.

Thank you,

Lacey ********

The Future

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

With the recession going on and life as my generation knows it changing, lots of economic turmoil is to be found.

Right now Nevada is facing it’s highest unemployment rate since 1983 at 9.1%, well above the national average of 7.2%.

With unemployment and business being down for downtown, the state of Nevada’s income has plummeted and the state budget has changed dramatically.

The Governor, whom I greatly disagree with, proposed his budget to the legislative earlier this month and the legislative will begin voting and deciding what to do come February.

Governor Gibbons wants to kill education for K-16 because he promised no new taxes, but he’s willing to “tax” state workers by proposing a 6% income decrease. This includes teachers, state employees, college employees, university employees, legislators, and himself, though I could care less for him.

Of course his proposed income decrease would affect us, but also his cut to higher education which would also mean a 50% cut to the higher education system that my husband works for.

Governor Gibbons wants to kill higher education in the state of Nevada.

But I am so thankful for a democracy and that he is not solely in charge of Nevada’s future.

Of course the fact that Jon works and is attending a public university greatly concerns me. Since he’s not yet finished with his master’s, but his program could be cut and he might not finish his masters concerns me. The fact that he may not have a job in a year and a half concerns me, but what mostly concerns me is that the Governor was not willing to step up and say, even though now we are facing a hardship we need to step up and continue to help the government so the government can help you. We need to tax the people, or some of the big businesses who have come here because of our tax breaks and grow up as a state and say yes we want a bright future for our children not, I promised no tax increase so I’m suggesting we do nothing and just kill education. I want our state to be less educated and kill our future.

The state services and education services are not businesses. Cutting costs won’t help us if it kills the opportunities for others.

The following is somewhat harsh speech given by Chancellor Rogers on the State of the System. I encourage all to read it or listen, at least those who live in Nevada, and I encourage all to write to their legislators to tell them we are willing to spend on our children.

The time is difficult and I’m not saying this just because I want my husband to stay employed, I’m saying this because I want my husband to continue his education, and still be allowed that opportunity in this hard time.

I’m saying this because what we need is more support for our education system,  our children’s future, and our future. For without an educated population we will fail and just become buildings in the desert.

Mail Lady

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

We have a pretty nice mail lady, and mailman for that matter, but this post is mostly about our mail lady.

I’m not sure how long she’s been our mail lady, but I only really remember her from sometime last year. I think before that we hadn’t had much interaction with her because most of our packages were delivered through UPS, and we just never saw her. Last year we began getting a lot of packages from Amazon through the USPS, and we saw her, even if it was just waving thank you as she pulled away in her truck or seeing her as we came or left our house. She also delivered the doll house we got from Conrad, and mentioned to Lilah that she could not open it till Christmas, since it was addressed to Lilah and it said not to open till Christmas.

Ever since last year we wave to her each time we see her and if she happens to be at the mailbox the girls go over to get our mail from her. They were wary of her the first few times, but now they seem to be a little more comfortable with her, though still wary if I just watch from the driveway.

(The mailbox is in our connecting duplex’s yard, so if it were just one house, it would be in our yard.)

She’s a very nice woman but she has an always busy or needs to be moving type personality. We see her dancing and singing to her i-tunes and when we’ve spoken it’s always been very quick.

Today we got another package and instead of just leaving it on the door and waving goodbye as I got it and she pulled away, she waited at the doorstep and also gave us our mail.

I had been taking a nap so she had rang the doorbell and knocked by the time I got there. She said, “Why so slow, slowpoke?” I replied I was taking a nap and she apologized for waking me and asked if the girls were sleeping too. I replied it was just me and the younger one as Lilah emerged and she commented on her being so quiet for me and then she was gone as quickly as she had appeared.

I really like our mail lady and her little quirkiness. With living in an apartment you got minimum interaction with the mailman and now with living right by the mailbox and receiving packages we see them on average once a week and they know who we are.  Our mailman also directly gave me a package and our mail the other day when I was out doing lights on Monday.

I wonder what it’s like to remember people and their addresses.  I wonder if they first know me by my address or by the name on the package. I wonder if seeing my girls ever brightens their day. In fact I know it brightened the mailman’s day on Monday. He handed me a package and Lilah asked what it was as I handed it to her. I told her it was a Christmas present for Daddy and she immediately replied, “Lets go wrap it right now.” Our mailman chuckled and replied how cute it was that she knew exactly what to do with it.

I wonder if I’m allowed to give gifts to our mail people, and I plan on trying to give them some of the truffles I make to show thanks for being such nice mail people.  I think interacting with them as given me teaching experiences with the girls on friendliness and being polite to those who serve us.


Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

I wanted to vote on election day this year. Early voting was appealing, but voting on November 4, 2008 seemed  more meaningful to me, plus I just forgot to early vote.

So I just voted and I had zero wait.

It helps to go during the day.

I’m happy to cast my ballot, and I’m happy to have Lilah and Eden somewhat aware of what’s happening. Lilah thinks McCain will win, but I think it’s because his name is easier to pronounce, she says Ovama, and McCain was the first name she associated with the election.  Lilah was just one year old in the last election, and ironically that was my first presidential election too.

I’m not sure who will win, but I guess all we can do is wait, unless you haven’t voted, then you need to vote.

I know this is an important election and I hope whoever is elected will be the best man for the country.