Thursday, May 16, 2013


It has become obvious to me, myself, and I that this blog is not inspiring me as much as I thought it would. Mainly, I read too much to go into great detail about any book I have digested- at least, in order to spare boredom, I keep it minimal. Not to mention that there is always something else going on in the real world that refuses to step aside.

I need suggestions, I guess. I feel that adding silly, completely off-topic anecdotes about my personal life is just not spicy enough. Possibly because I try not to go into great detail about that either... sigh...

I am going on a very important trip tomorrow through Sunday. I do this twice a year, skip a couple of times that kept me. This little excursion of mine will be to a place called Winter Park, which is about as beautiful Colorado-isque as you can get. Lots of skiing, snowboarding, playing in snow, snow this, snow that, etc etc etc. Haha, no. I will no be partaking in any of the mentioned activitites. I go to Winter Park for something MUCH MUCH more fun- scrapbooking. with the girls. for the entire weekend. No boys, no kids, no chores (eh, barely any), no alarm clocks... basically, the perfect weekend. I always bring up at least a couple of projects to work on. This spring will include stuff to make my daughter's birthday party invitations (she's going Outer Space this year) and a project I will not mention atm (its a surprise).

I have decided that I am going to show my creative side a little by sharing with all y'all a hobby that I actually turn in to something to be proud of. Every year, I make the invitations for my girls' birthday parties along with as much of their party decor as possible. I have made flamingoes, bees, dinosaurs, pirates, and more. I am also lucky to have a creative family that likes to help, too. Here is a picture of my amazing cousin's flamingo pinata:
And here is an equally stunning picture of a homemade cake made by my gorgeous sister-ish friend:
We have played Pin the Stinger on the Bee:

I LOVE being so involved in the girls' birthdays. There is never anything generic or dull. They give me a theme about a month ahead of time and I execute to the best of my abilities.
So, anyway, what I am getting at here is that I am going to make things spicy this weekend. Instead of writing about Time Longa' Dan Twine, I am going to show off a little with my creative gene.
I am, btw, 165 pages into this fabulous book, though. I don't want to sell it short of the awesomeness that it deserves. It is a great read; the language flows and the book is actually a collection of short essays done by the author so it keeps you interested by not staying on the same subject for long periods of time.
It also makes me a little antsy to get back to this:

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The REAL Castro

Hi, remember me? I know, I have been a bad blog writter lately. Here is why:

1. I got a job! I am going to be a guide for historical tours in Fort Collins with the Magis Bus Tours. I am super excited about it, it is a great way for me to learn some more Colorado history.

2. My oldest daughter, Anya, was in the Special Olympics today. She won 2nd place in a walking race and a wheelchair race and she won 1st place in a throwing competition. Here are some pictures of her being amazing!

Not only was she awesome, but the entire elementary school was just as cool:
The entire 1st Grade came, all wearing their t-shirts supporting Anya and her best buddy Logan in their races. We were the best organized, most enthusiastically supported group there. We caught the eye of the Greeley Tribune and there will be an entire Sunday article, section even, talking about Anya, Logan, Milliken Elementary, and our stellar community.
3. Turns out that the reason I have been so tired lately is that I am expecting my third child!
We are due in December, which is great... especially because our youngest is a December baby and of course there is Christmas. (That was meant to be a little sarcastic.) However, we are super excited and now I have an excuse to want to sleep instead of read. lol
Anyway, back to Cuba and Castro. This is my first post about The Prison Letters of Fidel Castro even though I am actually already done! Yes, it is true, I enjoyed the series of letters so much that I read it all, introduction and epilogue included. I do have to admit that there is still more in the book, but it is the letters written in Spanish. Even though I am able to read and speak Spanish fairly well, I decided to pass on re-reading everything I had already read.
These letters are specifically from Castro's time spent in the Isle of Pines in 1954-55 after the Moncada Assault. Most of them do not have much in them to help me further my increasing interest into Castro and Cuba. I only dog-eared 10 pages.
So, I decided to learn more about this man whom I had been taught to hate all my life. This is a perfect example of the type of history that the United States chooses to use to promote our ideological beliefs and to demonize those that go against us. There is much more to Castro than I had ever known, which basically boiled down to nothing more than a cruel dictator. I highly suggest you read up on him if you don't already know a more rounded biography. I know that this short book has sparked my interest in such a way that I am now searching for a more thorough historical book on Cuba.
In the meantime, I have started another book. Time Longa' Dan Twine is by Arnold R. Highfield (you have to pronounce it "Time Longer Than Twine" in a Carribean accent). I bought it in 2011 when we were in St. Croix, Virgin Islands. It is a complete history of the Carribean Islands, focusing on St. Croix. I am loving it already and it makes me yearn to head back to paradise where this is what I woke up to every morning...

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Heated Dog-Ears

I don't want to say that it was a waste of my time reading the appendix of critiques in The Heat Is On, it really isn't that I wasted my time... it is more that the entire context of the last 40 pages were WAY above my head. I do not suggest reading this particular appendix for others like myself who are no where near fluent in scientific methodology.

Over all, I am glad that I read/finished The Heat Is On. It was outdated but still important- just as a pro-civil rights pamphlet from the 1950s might be. It is always good to rediscover arguments/debates that are now in hind sight. At least for me, it is.

So time for the dog ears! I had quite a few in this book and am actually going to write a little synopsis of why I tagged each one and what I found out from further research.

pg. 34-Toxic Sludge is Good For You  by John Stauber. I want to add this to my list of books to read. It is a hit on the public relations industry (PRI).

pg. 36- The Greening of Planet Earth is a video (the link takes you to YouTube) narrated by the skeptic Sherwood Idso. At the time of publishing, Gelbspan names Idso as a main skeptic of global warming. In my recent research, I have found that not only is he still a proud supporter of CO2 (sorry don't know how to make that look right) but he now has his sons, Keith and Craig on board. Here is a more current example of their work with the Marshall Institute.

pg. 45- The Heated Debate by Robert Balling. The link actually takes you to an article written for an Arizona Publication, but I found what I was looking for, which is where he stands in more modern times on the issue.

pg. 49- Richard Linzden is an interesting character who I am going to look more into. Yes, this is a link to wikipedia. No, I don't believe using this site is always inappropriate, but rather a good starting point for further research in many instances.

pg. 90- ICCP (International Climate Change Partnership). Good thing this acronym was not used frequently, as it would have confused me continuously with the IPCC (International Panel of Climate Control). These groups are not the same! Although Gelbspan does not seem too fond of the former, it did and still does believe industry is the answer to promoting greener energy. I can't see this as a bad thing...

pg. 109- AOSIS (Alliance of Smalle Island States). I wanted to see how much this group has grown, and it sppears that it is a force growing stronger and stronger.

pg. 153- Dr. Henry Kendall. I have mentioned this man in the previous post, he is the 1990 Nobel Prize winner for physics who marks the death of democracy as eminent. Unfortunately, I have learned that he passed away in 1999 (while scuba diving- if you're gonna go, might as well do it right). RIP Dr. Kendall. I am still enamored with learning more about him, and thus I will!

pg. 165- Norman Myers. I have to include a nice little prediction by this man, coninciding with some of Kendalls' predictions of democratic collapse. "The United States, like any open society, is vulnerable to terrorism. A significant surge in terrorism is the likeliest result of the desperation that is overtaking many people in evironmentally disrupted coutries. ' The World Trade Center was easy,' Norman Myers says. 'The next time a nuclear device is set off, it most likely will not be by a government. It will probably be set off by some group of people who are so frustrated at being consigned to desperation that they will be driven to potentially outrageous acts of terrorism.'" Well, well, well... this has been the newest trend in terrorism since the 1990s, hasn't it?

pg. 175- The Beak of the Finch by Johnathon Weiner. REALLY want to read this book, which talks about Darwin's theory of evolution by referring to the change of finch populations on the Galapagos Island Daphne Major due to a catastrophic El Nino season (1982-83).

pg. 198- Dr. Patrick Michaels is a constant punching bag for Gelbspan. He is still a well-known skeptic and I do plan on reading his books.

These were not the only dog-ears of the book, but they were the most significant. I know this was a long post. Hopefully it wasn't boring...

On another note, I have already begun my next book. The Prison Letters of Fidel Castro will bring me into Cuban revolution, a topic I am not familiar with at all. I am already enjoying it.