Suggestions > Turn Off Your TV

TV is really not that interesting. Yes, some channels are informative and really entertaining, but most of it is just trash.

Think of all of the things you could be doing instead of TV! Here's just a small list:

  • Talking
  • Going for a walk
  • Biking
  • Rollerskating
  • Running
  • Swimming
  • Other sports
  • Playing an athletic game outside
  • Playing a board or card game
  • Playing music and singing
  • Writing a story
  • Writing a poem
  • Pondering deep thoughts
...and on and on it goes. There are so many things one can do instead of watching TV, and most of the time they are all more fun anyway.

Now, why not to watch TV:
  • Studies have shown that kids who watch too much TV are more likely to have ADD
  • It's bad for the eyes
  • It discourages imagination
  • Commercials on TV manipulate viewers
  • The content on TV is not worth watching
  • Kids who watch violence on TV are more likely to be violent when they are adults

So, instead of sitting down for a four-hour TV viewing, turn it off and have some real fun! I barely ever watch TV nowadays, and you can too!


Rants > Ads/Commercials

You know what I hate? I hate ads and commercials. They control your mind. They make you buy things. And they also give the rich advantages.

I know, I know, it makes money, but still, it's too much!

You can protest ads by simply turning off the TV or radio when they come on. I always do this. You should try it some time. It's really a relief. And you can talk to the people that are next to you if they are.

Ads are nothing but marketing, so why in the world would anyone listen to them?


Stories > SF > Alliance -- Book I: Discovery


A lonely woman stands on a mountain path, an alien of the planet. She is stranded here. Her wild hair blows in the cold night wind as she looks down at a town nestled in the valley of four mountains. She sees a medley of houses, a few with lights, welcoming her. But will the people inside be welcoming? This is the question she needs to know the answer to.

She has no choice but to descend down from the mountains, to the civilization she knows nothing of. She is hungry, and needs lodging. She follows a path not traversed by many.

Late one autumn night Ernie Fleisher was watching a Sunday night movie with his wife. “Oh look, this is my favorite part!” he exclaimed, pointing to a lady on the TV who seemed very frightened indeed.

The doorbell rang.

“I’ll get it,” Ernie sighed when his wife, who was a beautiful but very lazy woman, made no motion to get up. He strode towards the door, grumbling.

When he opened the door, he saw a frightening woman with tangled hair and outlandish dress.

“What do you want?” he asked, raising an eyebrow.

The woman, in a shaky, desperate voice, said, “Has le malen an has’ena deten-ende. Ene haner lah-ten has?”

“And what, may I ask, is that supposed to mean?” He growled. “Get off of my property now or I’ll call the police!” He slammed the door and went back to the TV.

“Sometimes those tourists can be really strange, you know? Barging onto my doorstep with that costume on and talking nonsense! And in the middle of the night! How outrageous can you get? And look,” he said, pointing to the screen again, “I missed the best part!”

The woman looks up at a sky dotted with stars in a pattern unfamiliar to her. It isn’t working. She must persist, however, or else she will starve.

She reaches the third door, and says, to a man with curiosity on his face, once more, “Je’le malen an jel’ena deten-ende! Ene jen lahen jel?” She is not acknowledged.

She sighs a bitter sigh, and as a last effort, tries using her hands to explain her plight. But she is so tired that she faints. The man catches her fall and brings her inside.

• • •

The woman has no choice but to stay. Where else would she go? She tells the man her story, making signs with her hands, pointing to things, and drawing pictures. They like each other, but eventually, this friendship turns into love. Then, the man proposes, and the woman has to be explained the concept of earth-marriage. When she understands she says yes, and they do get married, in a small ceremony with just a few guests.

Some months pass, and the woman bears a child. At the hospital, the woman speaks. She has learned the English language a little bit after living with the man. She says, “I have a name for him....”

This is just the prologue of the very long novel I am trying to write. Please comment about it.

Reviews > Web Sites > Play Free Online Games

Great, easy to use web site. Browse their large selection of online games quickly and easily, even with dialup (the site is simple with no more than two images per page).

Many of the games listed here are good games, considering they're free.

Check it out HERE.

My rating
(out of 6)

Reviews > Software > Mozilla Firefox

What an excellent web browser! Firefox includes features to block spyware and pop-up ads, comes with an integrated search bar which allows you to search many different sites (including Google, Yahoo, and Amazon.com), and lets you download different Themes to change its look. It also lets you install Extensions such as Forcastfox, StumbleUpon, and Adblock. These Extensions appear on the toolbars of the browser and let you see and do various things.

Of the extensions I downloaded, I liked Adblock and StumbleUpon the most. Adblock lets you get rid of annoying ads on various web pages by simply right-clicking (you hold the mouse button down or Ctrl-click on a Mac) on it and choosing "Adblock Image" from the pop-up menu. The ad simply disappears and never reappears with the same link again (you can also Adblock iframes). If the ad is a Flash movie, the pop-up menu doesn't work and instead you click on a small tab above or below the movie to block it. You can also block entire sites from sending ads (such as ad.doubleclick.net) so that you never get ads from them.

StumbleUpon is like channel-surfing for the web. You click a button and it sends you to a site that, based on your interests, you should like. Most of the time you do like it, and, if so, you click "I like it" on the toolbar (if you don't like it you click "Not-for-me"). You can also write comments on the site.

The ONLY thing I didn't like about Firefox was that when viewing java applets it often froze, but this may just be my computer acting up.

Firefox, as well as all of the Extensions and Themes, are FREE. Firefox is available for download HERE.

My rating:
(out of 6)


My Violin > Music Camp > First Day

The pieces I'm playing at music camp are the following:

  • Fughetta by J. S. Bach
  • Molto Allegro from W. A. Mozart's Quartet in D Major
  • Bachinanas Brasilieras No. 5 ARIA by Heitor Villa-Lobos
  • Concertino for Small Hands by Koh-Ichi Hattori
I have to learn these in the two weeks before the concert.

Today was my first day, and it was very tiring! First I went to singing class (I still don't know what I'm singing yet), then practiced Fughetta for an hour, then Molto Allegro. Then after lunch two very good ping-pong players came in and showed us how to really do ping-pong. They were on one volley for two whole minutes without stopping!

Then came the string orchestra class, lasting for two hours, where we practiced the last two pieces.

And I'm going to do this every day. Boy!

Reviews > Software > Taco HTML Edit

(glshorts.net does not exist)

This is a great HTML-editing program. You can add tags by using the menu, and the tags are color-coded by type. It also has Preview and Live Preview modes.

Preview opens the default browser with the html you wrote (saved or unsaved) and Live Preview opens a new window with both the source code and what the web page actually looks like, and as you type the code above the text appears below (you can't edit the web page section directly, only the code, although you can use the text for the clipboard.

It also includes a handy color selector that automatically adds the color code into the html code (so you don't have to memorize things like "75c075" to get THIS color, etc.

As an added bonus, it's available for FREE download HERE!


My Violin > Music Camp

Tomorrow I'm going to music camp. It's quite fun, but it's also a workout. All you do the whole day is music, music, then lunch, then an activity, then more music. And it's every day for two whole weeks not counting the weekends!

But I like playing the violin, and so it's fun for me. More about music camp later.

Musings > Putta Buttas

So, what is a putta butta, you wonder. Well, I don't really know myself. It all started in school, you see.

My friend and I just coined it one school day, saying "You little putta butta!" That's how it started. Pretty random, eh? Weird, too? Well, weird is what I am, and that's just the way it is.

You can also just call it a "thing of annoyance."


KidsNews > Vol 2 Num 1 -- March 2005

The Origin of the Easter Egg

Of all the symbols associated with Easter, the egg, the symbol of fertility and new life, is the most identifiable. The customs and traditions of using eggs have been associated with Easter for centuries.

Originally, Easter eggs were painted with bright colors to represent the sunlight of spring and were used in Easter-egg rolling contests or given as gifts. Later, they were colored and etched with various designs. The eggs were exchanged by lovers and romantic admirers, much the same as valentines. In medieval times eggs were traditionally given at Easter to the servants. In Germany eggs were given to children, along with other Easter gifts.

Different cultures have developed their own ways of decorating Easter eggs. Crimson eggs, to honor the blood of Christ, are exchanged in Greece. In parts of Germany and Austria, green eggs are used on Maundy Thursday (Holy Thursday). Slavic peoples decorate their eggs in special patterns of gold and silver.

Austrian artists design patterns by fastening ferns and tiny plants around the eggs, which are then boiled. The plants are then removed revealing a striking white pattern. The Poles and Ukrainians decorate eggs with simple designs and colors. A number of eggs are made in the distinctive manner called pysanki (to design, to write). Pysanki eggs are a masterpiece of skill and workmanship. Melted beeswax is applied to the fresh white egg. It is then dipped in successive baths of dye. After each dip, wax is painted over the area where the preceding color is to remain. Eventually a complex pattern of lines and colors emerges into a work of art.

In Germany and other countries, eggs used for cooking were not broken, but the contents were removed by piercing the end of each egg with a needle and blowing the contents into a bowl. The hollow eggs were then dyed, and hung from shrubs and trees during the Easter Week. The Armenians would decorate hollow eggs with pictures of Christ, the Virgin Mary, and other religious designs.

>From www.holidays.net/easter/eggs.htm

Favorite Web Sites

Free online games: www.playfreeonlinegames.co.uk

History: www.hyperhistory.com/online_n2/History_n2/a.html

To be continued...

Pet Corner

Bella-- dog
Age: 1
Eye color: Brown
Hair: Long, wavy, white-and-black
Personality: Playful
Loves to: Play, and look out the window

The Big Escape -- by Elizabeth, Owner

Bella loves to play in our yard, running back and forth until she’s exhausted. Well, one day she found an opening in the backyard and ran out. Mom and I were trying to catch her, but she was having way too much fun, free at last! Finally, I said the magic words: “You want a little something?” Bella stopped in her tracks and ran right to the door.

Thank goodness for treats!

What is KidsNews?

KidsNews is a free newsletter that I publish for my community. This post is here for the members the community to view.