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None of my girls are old enough to play with real, hard baseballs or softballs let alone tooth cracking aluminum bats. However, there are enough children in my neighborhood that are enjoying softball season at the moment that my kids are noticing. The little girl next door got a new pair of cleats and my oldest girl completely feminine love with the shoes with the "bumps" on the bottom.

After an inpromptu playtime in the side yard, she came in asking what the "bumps" on the bottom of the cleats were for. I explained (as best I could) that the plastic bumps made the little girl be able to run faster and not to fall down as much when playing ball. This explanation was all it took to make the case for buying a set of cleats for everyone in our family. After all, what's not to love about being able to run at record speeds and not to trip and fall while you are in the process?

I could see that even more explanation was going to be necessary and I followed up my previous remarks with the fact that cleats were for girls who actually were involved in softball. After the information that cleats are for girls who are playing sports and as little girls didn't play ball, they didn't come in little girl sizes.

The disappointment in her eyes was sad enough but the pitiful sight of her watching through the glass in the door while the neighborhood kids piled in the cars to go to their ballgames was especially painful to watch. It just so happened that I was having a conversation over the back fence with our ball playing neighbor girl's mom about this sad scenario when a brainstorm struck.

Practically in mid sentence a lightbulb lit up over her head and into the house she ran. I went back to pinning my rugs on the line and in a moment she returned carrying not only a pair of tiny, worn looking cleats, but a pair of those baggy knee length nylon shorts that girls wear to play ball.

I cleaned the red clay off the baseball shoes up as best I could and had them and her shorts waiting when she came back from the pool with her dad. You would have thought that I had given her a new car! The shoes are too big as are the shorts which are pulled up under her armpits at this very minute, but this is one happy little girl!


Race and Gender in the 2008 Presidential Election - Are We Idiots or What?

It should come as no surprise that I have been among the millions of American citizens watching the presidential race with interest. Those of you who visit this blog regularly should be amazed that I have bitten my tongue and kept quiet this long. I'm actually pretty shocked at myself. I almost broke training yesterday after catching a few minutes of the View's opening dialogue.

I have never considered myself and Whoopi Goldberg to be like minded; not that I DISagreed with her, I just didn't pay much attention other than I liked her in the movie, Sister Act. But I could have hugged her neck yesterday because gave my frustration a voice on national television. She and I both seem to wonder why in this day of enlightenment and such public need are race and gender in the 2008 Presidential Election an issue?

Why should anybody with half a brain give a rip how dark or light a candidate's skin might be? Even less important to me is whether they sit or stand to pee. Haven't we sunk as low as we can go by letting these idiotic worries dictate how we vote? We have bigger fish to fry here than sex or lineage. Why can't people understand that it's much more productive to study voting records than pantsuits?

I haven't decided yet who will get my vote, but when I do it won't be determined by gender or race. I'm going to look at how the states these candidates served did under their direction. Forget promises, these people have track records that can be used as indicators of their performance as public servants.

I consider the Presidential race a job interview. We, the citizens of the USA, are the employers. It's up to us to choose who will do the best job and we can't do this to the best of our ability if we allow ourselves to be side tracked by
irrelevant facts such as skin color, race or gender. You don't even have to like the person you vote for. Some of the most successful companies that I know of are run by efficient CEOs that would come in last place in a popularity contest. It's not about how personable a person might be or that they look like us, the person we put in the oval office needs to be capable, experienced and willing to get the job done of putting our country back into a position of greatness.


Travel With Kids

I love looking at homes especially in the springtime when the flowers are in bloom and everything's fresh and pretty without the inevitable layer of dust that dirt roads and dry weather tends to distribute all over everything in its path.

We had had several days of gloomy, stormy weather and just missed being hit by a tornado that touched down way too close for comfort. Being cooped up for several days with three hellions made me want to get out of the house. In my desperation to change my surroundings, I made the grave error of thinking that a road trip to enjoy the local architecture might be in order.

Right out of the box, the oldest one cried, pouted and when that didn't work; screamed that she didn't want to ride anywhere. She wanted to play some stuff! Her words, not mine. Then the car seat pinched the littlest one's leg and gave her an excellent reason to cry for a bit. Amazingly, the middle one out of fear or lack of reason didn't squeak, but early in the ride said that her stomach hurt. Knowing that meant she was car sick and about to vomit up her lunch, I gave up and turned the car around and headed for home. Not the first example of early Greek Revival did I see, but I do have a plan for next time. A baby sitter.