Tuesday, December 29, 2009


A bouquet of flowers and your favorite snack on your doorstep are enough to chase away the blues. Thanks, Elf Ears!:)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Dear Sir,

I hope on this cloudy day you find some sunshine.
The latter I someday hope to be.

with love darling,
your Sabrina Danielle

Thursday, December 17, 2009

My Fine Feathered Friend

Let me tell you a wonderful story about a chicken I named Ralphie(after the little boy in A Christmas Story. I know chickens are girls. Stop trying to ruin my story). After I finished my very last class at Dixie State college I drove to my sisters house so we could go to lunch and run some errands together. On my way to her house it started to snow. Not heavy and definitely not the kind that sticks, just a a little wispy snow. I pulled up to my sisters house and noticed a little figure moving close to a tree. At first I was pretty certain it was a little orange cat. Not so! It was indeed a chicken! Lost in a STG snowstorm. I told my sister I had something to show her and yanked her out in the snow to show her Ralphie huddled under a bush. Poor Ralphie. My sister tried to beckon Ralphie into her garage to no avail. Not even when she said "Come here, Chicken." She probably thought we were going to put her in my sisters oven.
So, back inside we went to get her ward directory to see if anyone knew who Ralphie belonged to. No one. So I called my friend Patrick who has some experience with these chicken-y situations. And I'm pretty sure he thought I was joking when I said "Hey how do you catch a chicken?" He said we were going to need a towel or a sheet to sneak attack and chicken-nap Ralphie. And then I realized there was no way my sister or I were going to be able to capture Ralphie in a towel. Treats! Of course! I then asked "What do chickens eat?" To which he replied "Is that a real question?" Apparently chickens like fruit and vegetables. I asked if chicken soup was out and he didn't think I was too funny. Then he told me it would be a terrible idea to try to lure Ralphie into the garage with treats because my sister would have chicken feathers and poop all over her garage.
"But what if he dies!" I protested.
"Then he dies. Don't you know how much a chicken costs? About as much as a carton of eggs!" To which I mumbled something about him being heartless. Poor, poor, Ralphie. After his grinchy heart grew three sizes, Patrick agreed to come rescue Ralphie if she was still outside after he got off work. Off we went to run errands, Ralphie huddled under the bush like a little orange rock. When my sister got home there was no Ralphie. No one knows where our little featherball has gone. I hope she's warm.

Post Edit: Patrick said that she probably got eaten by a dog. I said that Ralphie was too smart to get eaten by a dog "she was hiding under a bush for protection! Would you think of that?" He said "If I hid under a bush for protection you'd think I was retarded!" He has a point. But he's not a chicken. Nor does he care for them apparently.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

What I'm going to be when I grow up...

For as long as I can remember my parents have encouraged me to think about what I want to be when I grow up. In kindergarten I told my teacher I wanted to be a concert violinist, even though I didn’t play the violin. In third grade I was going to be a lawyer, a model, run an orphanage, and have my own family. When you’re little it seems there’s no bounds to what you can become. Of course by the time I reached middle school it seemed like anything I wanted to be was so far beyond me. But I quietly pursued dreams of being a photographer, an interior decorator, a dance teacher, a mom, a wife, a writer, and even owning my own boutique.
As the end of high school loomed I began to feel pressure to pick something to be. Before I knew it I was telling everyone I was going to be an English major. Not exactly my dream, but it was responsible. I had the option of teaching if it was absolutely necessary later on in life. But I wasn’t excited for the future. In my first semester of college I signed up for an intro to American Lit class, to test the waters. I’m grateful that I was able to quickly confirm that an English major was not for me. After three semesters at Dixie, I realized for reasons more social than academic, I wanted to move to BYU. I was grateful to be accepted, but there was the fear of not getting into the right program that hung over me like a rain cloud. I changed my major on nearly a weekly basis until one day I got the best advice I’ve ever been given. “Do what you love. Do what you think about when you don’t have too, “ was the advice given to me by my spectacled hero. The advice was simple, but true.
My heart knew I didn’t swoon over grading English papers, or translating documents into Spanish, dissecting animals, or performing in front of masses of people. As I thought about what it is I truly love, who I love, and where I love to be. My major manifested itself to me. My love of family, sewing, baking, organizing, and all things related to the home were obvious indicators that I needed to pursue a Home and Family Living major. It’s not a degree that will catapult me into a lavish lifestyle and it’s definitely not a degree that I get a standing ovation for. Most of the time when I tell people my major they stare at me blankly and ask what kind of job I could do with that. But that’s another component of this major that I’m so excited about. I feel like I’m in third grade again telling my mom things like “I’m going to be an interior decorator, a wedding dress designer, a journalist for the Martha Stewart Magazine, a mom, a children’s clothing designer, a wife.”
I guess there isn’t one thing in particular that I’m planning on becoming but a combination of many things. But if I had to sum up exactly what it is I want to be I would say that when I grow up I want to be a creative person, ever creating. Whether it’s cookies for a fifth grade Valentines party, a pinecone garland, copying a dress I saw in a magazine, Halloween costumes, birthday cakes, “Get Well Soon” cards, a place called home, or whatever the occasion calls for I want to be able to create something beautiful.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Nervous Nanny

Life is funny. We ask for things and then when we get them, we realize how much change actually scares us. This has been my pattern my whole life. I wanted so badly to be a middle schooler and nearly passed out from fear on my first day. Couldn't wait to leave behind the salmon and teal walls of SCMS to go on to be a high schooler. Almost faked sick on my first day of high school. Wished I could leave behind all of the drama of high school, only to cry the night before I started my first semester at Dixie. Now I'm being faced with what I feel is a mammoth change. BYU. Wait. Did I say I wanted to move to the freezing cold, away from my family, friends, and everything I've grown so accustomed to? It's true. I'm the one who applied. It was me who signed up for classes. I'm also the one who searched high and low for a dwelling. It was me. The same me who is now second guessing myself.

The bright side is this. I survived middle school and maybe even enjoyed portions. I met some amazing friends in high school, of whom I'll love forever. College wasn't nearly as scary as I imagined. Something (and not just my mom) tells me I'm in for a surprise at the Y. Hopefully my nervous nanny-ness wears off soon.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Twisting My Arm

Those of you who know me best know I kicked and screamed and refused upon all refusals to ever, ever, EVER be a facebookie. And I resisted for quite some time. Then after some arm twisting from a very adorable friend I joined the 21st century and became a facebookie. It was a year long affair of never changing my profile picture, changing my status 12 times, and ignoring every blasted game request anyone sent me.
Then one morning I woke up and said "Goodbye facebookie self." For nearly five months I was facebookless. I can tell you it had it's pros and it's cons. I no longer watched people's statuses switch from "single" to "in a relationship" like stocks on the Nasdaq, but I did feel ever so slightly disconnected. I missed mission calls, budding romances, all my childrenesque break-ups, and many other necessary evils of being 20 and single. There were days I said to myself "Maybe I could be a less uninteresting version of my former facebookie self? Perhaps?"
This Tuesday at yoga a lovely friend said "We need to be facebook friends. So, when you move we can still talk." I told her I was no facebookie and she was very sad. And finally I thought, "Gee, I suppose I will miss all my little dearlings from STG." So once again a charming friend coaxed me into coming back to the 21st century. Thank you friends who are constantly pulling me back into the modern world. Huzzah for facebookies!

Monday, November 9, 2009


I must confess... I have an crush on Zac Efron. Don't look too deeply into those eyes! Because no matter how hard you try (speaking from experience) you will fall in love with him. I can't wait to see him in this. He's so dreamy.

Bad day? I blame the buttonhole.

Thursday was one of those days. You know the kind I'm talking about. One of those days when you want to watch reruns of the Cosby show and down a pint of Ben and Jerry's. Instead I had to go to work and then school. Boo! For my beginner sewing class we had an assignment to sew a machine buttonhole. This seems simple enough, right? Well, it was for everyone but myself.
You see it was one of those days.
I went to my machine threaded it, and sewed two pieces of a jersey knit together, fused interfacing to the back of one of them and finally sat down to sew the buttonhole. My machine insisted on a sewing a lumpy mess of thread. Again I attempted. This time I could see the beginnings of a buttonhole, until once again disaster struck and another lumpy mess appeared on my swatch of pink jersey. This went on for 5 more attempts. 5! By this time my classmates were already working on their other projects. And I'm pretty sure steam was gushing from my ears. I decided this required the help of a professional so I asked my instructor to show me exactly why my machine thought buttonhole meant loopy, lumpy mess. She came over and attempted to sew a buttonhole, and you know what? It worked! Apparently I didn't have the bottom swatch in place. But by this time my interfacing was far from usable so I needed to fuse a new piece on.... There was no interfacing in sight, however. Again my ears began to steam like a choo-choo. And by this time there was a line with girls waiting to ask the instructor questions about their projects.
There I stood thinking about the stupidity of buttonholes. And then something caught my eye there sitting in all it's beautiful splendor was a lovely four inch square of fusible interfacing. It looked like manna from the heavens themselves.I snatched it up and fused it to my jersey swatch, sat down at my machine and sewed a nearly perfect buttonhole.
I wish I could thank whoever it was that dropped that interfacing. So, I'm sending this out into the universe in hopes that it gets to you, interfacing-dropper, Thank you for making my day!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Who says an old blog can't learn new tricks?

This blog was started for an English class and served me dutifully for a whole semester. However, once the semester ended I abandoned this little blog and it has since sat lonely and sad waiting to be a bloggin' again. I have recently decided that I miss having this little corner of the world to air out my thoughts. It's necessary to air out one's thoughts. Like laundry, or your car after someone eats a burrito in it. Anyway, this little blog has been officially revived. Huzzah!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Summer Reading

Now that we're nearing the end of the semester I know you guys are going to have a lot of spare time, so I composed an awesome reading list for you:)

1. How to Avoid Huge Ships by John W. Trimmer 
2. Scouts in Bondage by Michael Bell 
3. Be Bold with Bananas by Crescent Books 
4. Fancy Coffins to Make Yourself by Dale L. Power 
5. The Flat-Footed Flies of Europe by Peter J. Chandler 
6. 101 Uses for an Old Farm Tractor by Michael Dregni 
7. Across Europe by Kangaroo by Joseph R. Barry 
8. 101 Super Uses for Tampon Applicators by Lori Katz and Barbara Meyer 
9. The Making of a Moron by Niall Brennan  
10. Underwater Acoustics Handbook by Vernon Martin Albers 
11. Superfluous Hair and Its Removal by A. F. Niemoeller 
12. Lightweight Sandwich Construction by J. M. Davies 
13. The Devil's Cloth: A History of Stripes by Michel Pastoureaut 
14. How to Be a Pope: What to Do and Where to Go Once You're in the Vatican by Piers Marchant 
15. How to Read a Book by Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Van Doren

Happy Summer Reading!:D

Monday, April 20, 2009

Grammar: Passive Verbs

I write in passive voice without knowing it. It's a passive thing. But I'm going to be better. Maybe. 

In passive voice the subject receives the action expressed in the verb and the subjected is acted upon. The English translation is something like this: The boy was bitten by the dog. The correct way to write this would be to say: The dog bit the boy. Yah! Active Voice!

For more on passive voice click here

America the Beautiful

America the Beautiful: What We're Fighting For by Dinesh D'Souza could easily be my favorite piece of writing we have read this semester. D'Souza flawlessly combines a serious topic with satire, making this an enjoyable read. 

D'Souza made so many interesting points, things I've never thought of. The first thing that jumped out at me was on pg. 769 where he wrote about how Americans can't win something if they have no idea why they're fighting. And later on he mentions that Americans cannot succeed if they don't believe they are fighting for good. The only thing I would add to that is to say that not only do we have to know what we're fighting for, we have to be united in what we're fighting for. 

 Another thing he wrote about that I found fascinating is why the fundamental Islamic world hates western culture. He wrote that American culture "allows for the shaping of your own life" and in contrast Islam relies heavily upon Allah to predict the path their life takes. Fundamentalists believe that western culture is perverting the ways of Islam. They hope that by removing American troops they'll be able to eliminate western influence and hold true to the Koran. 

I really enjoyed this piece. I enjoyed it so much I made my parents read it. They loved it too:)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Research Modes

 Proposition/opposition pieces allow the write to write both views of what is usually a controversial issue. The first half is usually written for argument A and the second portion is usually to argue point B. In the conclusion the writer expresses what viewpoint they take. 

A descriptive piece should create a vivid image of a person, place or an idea. This form of writing relies more heavily on detail that draws on all of the senses. This enables the reader to tap into the writers sense. 

Click here for more modes of writing.

After talking with Chelsea, I decided I'll most likely write my research paper in the descriptive mode of writing

Monday, March 23, 2009

Constitution Research


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

50 Questions About the Constitution

1. Why was it written?
2. How long did it take to write it?
3. Where was it written?
4. Who wrote the actual document?
5. Who approved it?
6. Who signed it?
7. Was it debated?
8. Which country was the first to recognize it?
9. Is this the oldest/youngest constitution?
10. How many Americans have actually read it?
11. Do we still uphold what it?
12. What influenced it?
13. How many languages has it been translated into?
14. Why is it important?
15. Why is it unimportant?
16. Who does it affect?
17. Is it effective?
18. Is it still relevant to modern society?
19. What kind of pen was it written with?
20. Did the writer get writer's cramp?
21. How many drafts were written?
22. Is it the most famous document in the world?
23. Are there any spelling mistakes?
24. What was omitted?
25. Why was it omitted?
26. Did the founding father's regret omitting anything?
27. Which other countries have been affected by it?
28. How is it being preserved?
29. Is there a map on the back?
30. How many presidents actually knew what it said?
31. Is it overlooked in today's government?
32. Where is it today?
33. Did the founding fathers know the change it would bring worldwide?
34. How would they react to what we've done with it today?
35. How big is it?
36. How many words does it have?
37. Monetarily, how much is it worth?
38. Are there any urban legends about it?
39. Has it ever been stolen?
40. Who was the oldest person to sign it?
41. How specific is it?
42. Was it meant for open interpretation?
43. How were the signers chosen?
44. Who was the youngest person to sign it?
45. Could it have been generated in any other land?
46. Which building was it signed in?
47. Did any of the signers return to live in Europe?
48. Did John Locke's ideology have an impact on it?
49. How many signers were there?
50. How long did it take England to find out it was written?

Grammar: Thesaurus

A thesaurus is not a dinosaur. If it was it would be a pretty conceded dinosaur. THEsaurus. I think thesaurus usage is overlooked by most students especially in academic writing. I have found that writing with the use of a thesaurus has immensely affected my writing. I now find that I can't even write a paper without a thesaurus, because I'm constantly trying to think of ways to jazz up my papers. The simplest way to lure a reader is through interesting word choice.

If you're still convinced the thesaurus is a dinosaur click here.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Breather Assignment Topic

I picked a song by, the eccentric musical mastermind, Sufjan Stevens entitled the "The Upper Peninsula" off of his album Greetings from Michigan. 

Serving in Florida and Framing Class

I never cease to be amazed by the content of this text book. Wow. The readings this week were amazing! Both authors brought light to issues that are usually acknowledged with a shrug and a sigh of "That's life." I think sometimes we take our liberties for granted and don't fully understand the capacity we are endowed with as American citizens. 

The first piece entitled Serving in Florida by Barbara Ehrenreich gave the reader amazing insight into the life of someone trying to attain the American dream under seemingly impossible conditions. I think the reason this piece is so effective is because of the mass amount of imagery Ehrenreich uses to describe virtually everything. I could actually visualize myself in every setting she described. I thought this was an interesting experiment. One that I personally would not want to embark on. I think the reason Ehrenreich decided to conduct such a ludicrous experiment was because she could. Nearing the end of the piece Ehrenreich says "I had gone into this venture in the spirit of science[...]but somewhere along the line, in the tunnel vision imposed by long shifts and relentless concentration, it became a test of myself, and clearly I have failed." The most important thing Ehrenreich accomplished through writing this piece is to allow the reader to question the remains (if any) of someone who has spent their life chasing the dollar. 

The second piece, Framing Class, Vicarious Living, and Conspicuous Consumption by Diana Kendall was genius in it's purest form. Research has actually proven that TV is an excellent form of mind programming, which is just an ornate way of saying mind control. TV is effective because of the hypnotic state it lulls us into, this causes our right brain to take over, completely diminishing our cognitive and analytical thinking. It's no surprise that class framing has been found lurking in media, we were so mesmerized by Ryan Seacrests dazzling smile to even notice, or care. Kendall nicely summarizes her thoughts in the last paragraph by saying "Some analysts believe that the media amuse and lull  audiences rather than stimulating them to think, but we must not become complacent, thinking that everthing is all right as our society and world become increasingly divided between the 'haves' and 'have nots.'" The frightening reality is we are complacent.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Grammar: And I quote....

I've found that I'm losing steam with these grammar posts. Anyhow, in my political analysis assignment I found that I would punctuate after quotation marks instead of in the quotation marks. So, I thought it'd be a good idea to go over those rules.

There are two instances when it is appropriate to use quotation marks:

1. To enclose direct quotes.
ex. Jim said, "Never bring your purple belt to work, because somebody might steal it."
2. To indicate if a word is used in an ironic fashion. (This is where most people over do it. Less is more folks!)
ex. The great march of  "progress" has left millions impoverished and hungry.

For more tips on quotation punctuation click here.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Grammar: Subject Verb Agreement

Subject verb agreement is one of those grammar issues that silently creeps up on a conversation or in a term paper.  You tend to feel like a goober when you realize you've just said something like "They is right!" Oh no...am I going to have to live down by the river in a van? Wait there is hope!
Subject verb agreement is quite simple(maybe that's why we feel stupid when we misuse it?). Ironically, you only need to make sure that subject agrees with the verb in number. Hooray!

Here are some common subject verb agreement mistakes:

Incorrect: Here is wealth and beauty.
Correct: Here are wealth and beauty.

Incorrect: There is no books.
Correct: There are no books.

Incorrect: There are a variety of ice cream flavors.
Correct: There is a variety of ice cream flavors. 

Agree or disagree? If you agree to disagree click here for more:)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Roots of Debate in Education and the Hope of Dialogue

The essay "The Roots of Debate in Education and the Hope of Dialogue" by Deborah Tannen discusses our debate centered society we live in, as well as the effects it's wrought on our education system. 

Tannen writes that our society spends too much time trying to prove others wrong instead of accepting that there may be multiple ways to solve a problem. In contrast there are some cases once a point is proven we hold tightly to that point and are too scared to debate it. Tannen wrote about  an Australian resident who debated that ulcers are caused by bacteria, even though it was believed that the stomach was too sterile to support a bacteria. This is an example of when debate can be "constructive".

Tannen suggests that to go beyond dualism we must be able to catch ourselves in thinking there are only two sides of an issue. Instead we need to try to keep in mind all sides of the issue. She also suggests that we ask what's right with an opposing point. Tannen says to avoid trying to fit "ideas into any particular camp" because it "requires you to oversimplify".  This narrow-mindedness also implies that only one solution is applicable to every problem.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Grammar: Than or Then?

I've always had a hard time with the proper usage of than and then. Since, I didn't know how to use them I usually just stuck with then all the time. I know that's not smart but I figured I'd be right at least half the time.  

So, when do you use than, or even then? To put it simplistically then is used to denote time. 
ex: Will you be home at noon? I'll call you then.
On the flip side, than is used in comparisons. 
ex. Tom is smarter than Bill.

Monkey see, monkey do, monkey click here for more:)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Gatto & Rose

The two essays this week were very intriguing. I thought both offered interesting insight and opinions on the structure and validity of the a school system. 

Against School by John Taylor Gatto was an interesting piece because it came from someone who had firsthand experience working in the public school system. I thought Gatto made an interesting point when he noted that we could get rid of the school "system" and "help kids take an education rather than merely receive schooling." He suggests that students would more likely discover their genius if only the curriculum was more flexible. I'm not sure If I'm on board with his idea that the public school system is a conspiracy. However, I think his points on the structure of the system are valid. I think elementary and secondary education should give students more options in how and what they are learning. I think the most beneficial thing I learned from this essay is how to oppose becoming a product of the public school system. Gatto wrote, "I've concluded that genius is as common as dirt. We suppress our genius only because we haven't yet figured out how to manage a population of educated men and women. The solution, I think, is simple and glorious. Let them manage themselves."

The second piece, "I Just Wanna Be average"  by Mike Rose illustrated the great divide that occurs when we use testing to determine student's capabilities. I think the reliance we have on testing is one of the greatest fallacies of the American education system. Rose writes about what can happen when a teacher imposes a stricter curriculum and forces students to dig deep into the western literature. I think if more teachers taught the way Mr. Jack MacFarland taught, students would be more willing to engage themselves in finding their genius. I think the most powerful statement Rose makes is in his last paragraph where he writes, "Knowledge was becoming a bonding agent." I think this is his point in a nutshell. Knowledge is what brings us together or even what separates us. What we know is so critical to who we become.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Grammar: Verb Tense Consistency

Verb tense consistency is one thing I struggle with in writing as well as speaking. I tend to start speaking or writing in one tense and finish the sentence in an opposite tense. That probably makes me seem a little crazy. So, I decided this would be a really good thing to brush up on, because who likes to look crazy?

Here are some examples:
Incorrect: The ocean contains rich minerals that washed down from rivers and streams.
Corrected: The ocean contains rich minerals that wash down from rivers and streams. 
Incorrect: Yesterday we had walked to school but later rode the bus home.
Corrected: Yesterday we walked to school but later rode the bus home.

For more on verb tense consistency click here!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Idiot Nation

Surprisingly, I agreed with Moore's views of the American public school system. The government gives schools an inch of funding and expects students to exceed a mile. I think it's impossible to be academically successful without full access to an updated library. I also think it's a ludicrous idea to believe that testing is the solution to our problems. I remember my stomach instantaneously tightening as I heard my teacher utter the phrase "state testing". After 12 years of state testing I can honestly say I never once took a state exam that coincided with what I learned in the classroom. Not only did state testing hinder the teachers ability to teach creatively, it hindered my ability to give an answer that wasn't listed as A, B, or C. From a young age we are taught to regurgitate everything our teachers teach. Can you say monkey see monkey do? 

 I recently had a conversation with an exchange student from Brazil. She told me about the vast differences between American high schools and the ones she attended in Brazil. She explained that in Brazil you don't have the option of failing a class. If you fail one class you retake the whole year. I sat with my mouth gaping open as I realized under those circumstances my graduating class would've  been  30 instead of 350. I think that our public schools stress the importance of sports rather than the importance of academics. In most high schools if you participate on any team you have to maintain about a "C" average. My junior year of high school the administration decided it was indefinitely important to put in a custom turf field. In order to do so they pulled funding from school clubs and teacher funds. 

Wow. Was anyone else shocked by the fact that corporate America is trying to buy the souls of students through their lunch money? Coke Day? You've got to be kidding! I think the reason administrators have allowed the invasion of corporate America into public schools goes back to a lack of funding. If they can't get it from the government or from making kids go door-to-door guilt tripping people into buying cookie dough, where can it come from? From box tops and pop cans of course! 

I don't think we need another big business bailout, but rather, an education bailout.

Grammar: Reflecting on Reflexive Pronouns

Ironically I didn't actually learn what a reflexive pronoun was until I started learning Spanish. In other words I had to learn another language to actually understand my native tongue. 

Reflexive pronouns are pretty easily understood. However, the reflexive pronoun "myself" gets abused every now and again. I like hearing people say things like, "I took the dog with myself,"or  "You can call Larry, Moe,  or myself."  Ok. Great. I think sometimes we add "myself" in hopes that we'll sound more eloquent. Maybe in the same regard that some people raise their pinky as they drink out of a plastic cup. Yes, it seems more regal, but really doesn't make much sense. 

Some basic rules in using reflexive pronouns are:

1. When the subject and object are the same.
ex. The band calls themselves "U2".
2. As the object of a preposition, referring to the subject.
ex. That man is talking to himself.
3. When you want to emphasize the subject.
ex. They ate all the pie themselves. 

Raise your right pinky. Do you solemnly swear that you will not misuse reflexive pronouns?
Ok, you can click here:)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Grammar: Avoiding Apostrophe Catastrophe

At times the apostrophe is  treated like the comma(maybe because they look so much alike?). I think the misconception is that when something's plural you add an apostrophe. Or maybe because it's so small we figure it's better to tag it on there. 

We see this all the time in our grocery stores. "Banana's $1.50." Oh so the banana's own $1.50! Not exactly. 

Here are the three cases for apostrophe usage:
1. to show possession
ex. the boy's hat
2. to show the omission of letters
ex. should+not=shouldn't
3. to indicate plurals of lowercase letters
ex. Nita's mother constantly stressed minding one's  p's and q's. 

Friends don't let friends overuse apostrophe's. If you love you're friends click here.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

"Looking For Work" & "What We Really Miss About the 1950's"

The two pieces assigned to read this week were vastly different. The first "Looking for Work" by Gary Soto was a narrative of a hispanic boy growing up in a predominately white 1950's United States. The second piece by Stephanie Coontz entitled "What We Really Miss About the 1950's" is about the misleadings of the nostalgia producing era. 

Soto's piece was easy to follow and engaged the reader from the beginning. He created familiarity that allowed the reader to see things unfolding almost as if it was happening on the pages themselves. Coontz's piece was much more difficult to be engaged by. Nearly every other line was filled with statistics and numbers. This made it hard to concentrate on the actual content of the piece, I found myself trying to process all of the data and make sense of all the facts being shot at me. 

I think Soto was trying to convey that everyone in the 1950's was trying to create the homes they saw on television. I don't think much has changed in modern times. We are still driven by what sitcoms and reality t.v. show tells us is "normal", or rather, happiness. From what I could gather I think Coontz was trying to make the statement that the 1950's weren't really about tight knit families who learned life lessons on a daily basis, but more so about putting on a happy facade and sweeping problems under the rug. 

In my opinion Soto's piece does challenge the American family ideal. I think it humanizes it. The narrative projects how a real family would go about daily tasks. Soto's family might not ideal, but it is certainly realistic. I would say Coontz piece also certainly challenges the American family ideal of the 1950's. Her statistics proved that even after inhaling all of the Aqua Net in the world we can't deny that the media displayed the American family under the most ideal standards.

I think the thing I find the most interesting after reading both of these pieces is that I still feel a great deal of nostalgia for the 1950's.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Political Cartoons

Friday, January 16, 2009

Grammar: H-y-p-h-e-n-s

In my mind hyphens are a somewhat superfluous punctuation. They've probably only seemed that way because I've never really learned when it's necessary to use said superfluity. I've found that I mostly use hyphens to be facetious, I never have a very sincere intent when using them. Sometimes when other people use hyphens it makes me feel like they're undermining my intelligence. For example: It's a one-way street. 
Ok, I know it's not a one street or a way street. For the love!

All hyphen animosity aside, I found out some instances when hyphens actually make sense. 
1. Compound Numbers 
ex. sixty-five
2. With prefixes 
ex. mid-September
 3.  At the end of a line
ex. The cars were mass-

Let's raise the roof for the hyphen, because it's not useless! Click HERE  if you love hyphens!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Writing Prompt: America the Beautiful...

This post for my 2010 English class is to be directed toward what it means to me to be an American citizen. As well as how the text of this class (Rereading America) might challenge my opinion.

For me being an American citizen is hard to put into words. The first thing that comes to mind is blessings...this country is so immensely blessed. A major component of America is diversity. Therefore, America's citizen are also diverse. This country thrives on individualism. Even the idea of the "American Dream" is formed by  and tailored to the dreamer. Individualism is key to the American because this country was founded by individualists. There is no mold to what the American citizen is to fill. We just are. 

I have a pretty good feeling that Rereading America will indefinitely challenge my views and opinions. I love this country. I love the idea of an attainable American dream. I truly believe in the traditional family. Do I live in a fantasy world? Maybe. I agree that we should challenge the norm, branch out, and make old things new. However, I also believe in holding on to the fundamentals of what this country was founded upon, and for what purposes it was founded upon. 

Grammar: The Dreaded Semicolon

At some point each writer is faced with the inevitable semicolon. When do you use it? Why do you use it? These are questions I ask myself whenever faced with the perplexing matter of "To semicolon, or not to semicolon?" 
I find that I struggle the most with the artistic use of a semicolon vs. grammatical use. I think in some cases a semicolon can be used to denote a longer pause. However, some people think you're only supposed to use a semicolon to connect an elliptical clause to an independent clause. 
I found a website that says not only can it be used for artistic use (yay!) but also to connect elliptical and independent clauses. 

An example of artistic use with a semicolon: 
"In books I find the dead as if they were alive; from books come forth the laws of peace." 
An example of the connection between elliptical and independent clauses:
"We were not careless; just the opposite."

So, here's to all the semicolon scaredy cats.... Click here:)