Campaign 2016

 Constitution_Pg1of4_AC

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

 – Preamble to the United States Constitution

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

– Declaration of Independence

With Ted Cruz’s presidential announcement on Monday (watch the speech here), the campaign season has officially begun. I love it. I love to watch the speeches, the analysis, the debates (I have been known to DVR debates); and I am jealous of Campaign Carl (Carl Cameron of Fox News) as he gets to travel to all the political hot spots.

However, putting a damper on my excitement is the tendency of candidates to avoid any topics of substance and reduce their message to political clichés, sound bites, and what they think a particular group wants to hear. I have a startling piece of advice for any candidate – BE HONEST. Tell us what you really think, not what you think we want to hear. Don’t tell us what you stand for when you are visiting Group A, and what you stand for when visiting Group B, and so on. Courageously tell us what you really stand for and stand firm.

Both parties do it, they pander to the voters. Stop it! I have more respect for someone who tells me what they really think – even if I don’t agree with them – than someone who is pretending because they want a vote. We have lost the ability of a good debate. You can discuss opposing issues and have a good discussion. Sadly, debates have turned into spouting the party line and vilifying your opponent. We (the candidates and us regular people) need to be able to have a good debate and productive discussions. Everyone seems to get so bent out of shape and offended about everything that there is no debate. Guess what? You are going to be offended sometimes. Get over it and move on. We will probably never agree 100% with anyone, but we should be willing to listen to each other and discuss issues without becoming hysterical.

Dear candidates, have a decent debate. Talk about actual things in your stump speeches, don’t just fill your campaign stops with political fluff and clichés. Stop altering your position for each group you visit. Stop the incessant labeling! I hate the labeling! People are individuals. “Well, he’s speaking to the evangelicals so he will need to address blah, blah, blah . . .” I can’t stand this. Just tell me your true positions and why I should let you represent me; whether I am an evangelical, a woman, white, black, Hispanic, from the Deep South, from the North or West, from a rural area or a big city, etc. As an individual, why should I vote for you? Why would you be a good leader? Our forefathers risked their lives to create this country, today’s politicians are afraid of losing their cushy lifestyle or a place on a committee.

I think most voters would appreciate straightforwardness in the upcoming campaign season. Just give us the reasons why you would make a good president, senator, representative, and don’t back down. If you can be swayed by a little criticism, you are not leader material. And please, just BE HONEST.

Signed,

(No label needed)

A Voter

(Editorial note: My political leanings are decidedly conservative. I welcome constructive debate only. Of course, I don’t know who I am going to vote for yet, but I enjoyed Ted Cruz’s speech on Monday. I felt he really spoke what he believes. He walked around the stage as he talked sans podium and teleprompter.)

Be you and be salty!

photoI have been beyond excited to be a part of the launch team for Jen Hatmaker’s new book, For the Love. It has only been a week and the lessons from the book and the discussions within the launch team have been awesome. The full title of the book is, For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards. I can’t say much about the book yet, but let me share this quote: “You are good at something for a reason. God designed you this way, on purpose. It isn’t fake or a fluke or small. These are the mind and heart and hands and voice you’ve been given, so use them.” So I have been encouraged to use my gifts, and to support others to using theirs. Go us!

The sermon given by Dr. John Bryan at church on Sunday just built on this lesson. The sermon was titled “Step Out . . . of the Salt Shaker.”  The verse from Matthew tells us that we are the salt of the earth. What does that mean? Dr. Bryan encouraged us to look at what salt is used for – to preserve and to flavor. Spiritually salty people preserve God’s Word and make a difference, they spread the saltiness, they flavor the world. Salt is useless just sitting in its container. Get out of the salt shaker!

So I was challenged. I had already been reading about being myself and using my gifts – now I was shown I needed to apply these lessons. So I am trying to apply them. Using my own special set of gifts. I don’t have to be like that other mom to be a good mom; I don’t have to be like that other teacher to be a good teacher; I don’t have to be like that other Christian to be a good Christian. I just have to serve God with my gifts the best way I can.matt513

Simple, yet profound lessons. Be you. Embrace your gifts. Share Jesus. Be salty!

Col. 3:23

Back in the (blogging) saddle again

forthelovecover

Here I go again. Trying to start my blog. I love to write, and it has always been my dream to write. Of course, I have had the opportunity to write for newspapers – a while ago – and now I am writing excellent discussions boards and papers while working on my master’s degree – yay (why is there not a sarcasm font?). I have been trying to work up the nerve to post, and I have been racking my brain to come up with a “post-worthy” topic. Still nothing.

However, I got an email the other night that showed me it was time to pursue my dream. I just began following author Jen Hatmaker – on facebook (not in a creepy, stalkery way)- and she recently posted about looking for members for a launch team for her new book, For the Love. I was so excited! I love books! This team sounded awesome! So I applied, and the next day Jen posted again saying 5,000 people applied for 500 spots. I thought, “Well, there is no way I will get a spot.” However, that email proved me wrong. I got a spot on the team! The book comes out in August (you can pre-order it now), but me and my 499 new best friends get to read it now. (It is a great book, y’all!)

Through this opportunity, I have been able to connect with many women just like me – and they have been so encouraging. So thanks to them and Jen (whose blog post about writing brought my writing dreams to the forefront of my mind again) I am trying my hand at blogging again.

I hope you will follow my blog – I have no set theme. I plan to write about whatever strikes my fancy at the moment. If you like it, please let me know. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to tell me.

Daily Prompt: Let’s Go Crazy

Daily Prompt: Let’s Go Crazy.

I am racking my brain to think of something truly crazy I have done, and I can’t think of anything. I am not really a “Let’s go crazy!” type of person. I am way too much of an introvert and Type A for that. (Now around family I have been known to be a little crazier, but only in a karaoke, Wii Smurf Dance kind of way.)

This blog is somewhat of me being crazy. I have dreamed since I was little of being a writer, maybe one day writing a book. I have written some, but mostly news/feature type stories. So this blog is a move out of my comfort zone for me. The minute I hit that publish button my heart pounds slightly because I am putting my own personal thoughts out there for all to read. But I am doing it anyway.

If I had to pick a crazy dream, it would be to travel all over the world. I would love to homeschool the kids and just travel. My dream is to go and experience life in different places. Of course this dream involves have the funds to accomplish worldwide travel and have none of the daily drudgery that comes with real life.

I want to go out West and experience life on a ranch. I want to visit Europe and tour places where history was made. I want to see Australia. I have always been fascinated with that country. Life there seems so unique. I want to go to Israel, to walk where heroes of the Bible walked. To be in the places Jesus was when he was on the earth.

One day maybe we will go and live the dream. For now I will keep writing and just try sometimes to do something that my usual self might not do, but my crazy dream self would.

via Daily Prompt: Let’s Go Crazy.

Daily Prompt: Back on the Chain Gang

Daily Prompt: Back on the Chain Gang.

Where to find the time?

I am not a fan of cleaning. I am a fan of a clean house, but I am just not thrilled about what is required to get there. The main problem is maintaining it; cleaning is NEVER done! I think that is what bothers me the most. I will clean and clean and be so proud at my sparkly, shiny kitchen and what seems like two seconds later, messy again! I know a family of five is going to make a mess, but a day or two of a clean house would be nice. I would also say the majority of the five people who live here aren’t as concerned with cleanliness as I am.

So last weekend our house was clean. Every room! I was all excited, it will be so easy to keep the house clean during our busy week, now that we are starting with a clean slate. Well . . . here I sit at a dining room table that needs to be cleaned off, dishes in the sink, and laundry that needs to be done.

I guess I just need to learn to let it go. The house will probably not be perfect while the kids are young. (Maybe not even after that.) There are more important things in life than a perfect house. But I do need to go do laundry, because clean underwear is pretty important.

via Daily Prompt: Back on the Chain Gang.

My Pinterest Summer

I love Pinterest. There I admitted it. I am slightly addicted. Especially since I have the Pinterest app on my phone. I can scroll and pin so easily on my phone. I decided on my summer off to have a Pinterest summer. I thought I will start doing all these things I am pinning. Yes, I have tried many recipes on Pinterest, but I wanted to get down to the nitty gritty and do all the home decor/crafty stuff. Yeah, we were going in hardcore. I was so serious about it, when people asked my kids what we were doing this summer they said, “Pinterest summer!” Well, we are more than halfway through summer and I am sad to say that a lot of projects have not been completed. We have made ice chalk and chalk paint for the kids to use outside. Those were fun and relatively simple. I have also done a nice display of trophies and medals for my son. Aside from failed Pinterest projects, we have had a fun summer playing outside, going to the lake, and visiting the mountains. Not only that but I have been able to pin even more exciting projects on Pinterest. 🙂

My Kids Are Supermodels

I have come to a stunning revelation–my children are secret fashion models. That is the only rational explanation I have for the mounds of laundry they have every week. They wear uniforms to school, so I really can’t understand the piles and piles of laundry I am sorting through all the time. They must have a major fashion show after we have all gone to bed that requires their entire wardrobe to be modeled and then dumped in the hamper to be freshly laundered for their next show. I mean really this must be what happens, right?

Pushing the fashion envelope

Back-to-School

Today was my last weekday of wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and a ball cap for a while. My “leisurely” days of summer are over. Has it really been 9 weeks already?
It is time to go back to school. Even as a teacher, I cringe when the summer fun commercials turn into school supply commercials. It seems like it wasn’t so long ago I was putting up my Happy Summer bulletin board decorated with my students’ drawings of big-time summer plans. Monday I will return to my classroom and take down our summer dreams. I will put up something to welcome in school aspirations.
While my summer did mainly
consist of entertaining my three
children and a lot of cleaning and organizing, I am a tad bit sad to let it go – I did get to sleep in most days. However, there is an excitement that comes with a new year. I am looking forward to what I will teach my new group of kids, and to what they will teach me.

No TSPLOST!

Judgment Day for TSPLOST | www.wsbradio.com.

Vote no on TSPLOST! Do we really need another tax, especially one that is intended to last for 10 years. The government really ought to be required to budget its money just like everyone else and not tax the people every time they want something new. This article said that supporters of the TSPLOST raised over $6 million, why not donate that money to transportation projects instead of taxing the people? Also, I am not convinced these projects will improve traffic in Atlanta – the road work for the next ten years will definitely make it worse.

 

“For example. If the system be established on basis of Income, and his just proportion on that scale has been already drawn from every one, to step into the field of Consumption, and tax special articles in that, as broadcloth or homespun, wine or whiskey, a coach or a wagon, is doubly taxing the same article. For that portion of Income with which these articles are purchased, having already paid its tax as Income, to pay another tax on the thing it purchased, is paying twice for the same thing; it is an aggrievance on the citizens who use these articles in exoneration of those who do not, contrary to the most sacred of the duties of a government, to do equal and impartial justice to all its citizens.” – Thomas Jefferson

Read more: Tax Quotes from American History http://www.american-history-fun-facts.com/tax-quotes.html#ixzz22DCQTvK3
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“The government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.” – Ronald Reagan

Read more: Tax Quotes from American History http://www.american-history-fun-facts.com/tax-quotes.html#ixzz22DCdxjpf
Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Share Alike

An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy.

DANIEL WEBSTER, McCulloch v. Maryland, 1819

My New Blog

I have been wanting to start blogging for a while now, but to be quite honest I was a little nervous. I like to write and I like to share my opinion, but the idea of making it public . . . I wasn’t excited about that. Well, now I’ve decided to go for it. I explained in the About section that this blog doesn’t have a specific subject. I plan to blog what is on my mind. Part of the reason I think I was nervous is because a lot of things I like to write about, such as politics, people have strong opinions on and I did not want to be a party to online arguments. Some of the comments I see on political blogs make me very sad. It is a shame that people can not rationally debate issues.  But that sounds like a blog for another time. 🙂

So here it goes, my try at blogging. I hope you enjoy it.

(If you don’t, don’t tell me – ha, ha!)