Thursday, February 01, 2007


Here's Jilli's 8th birthday party. There was cake for the people and kibble for the dogs.

I met a friend for lunch yesterday. On the way home I picked up a cake from the local supermarket.

Grace arranged the candles on the cake. We sang Happy Birthday to Jilli who could have cared less: She was still wet (as you can see) from having a bath. Jilli was only interested in keeping warm.

Grace blew the candles out. We kind of thought that Jilli made a wish.

Grace loved the cake. It was right up her alley: Chocolate center, chocolate frosting with candy sprinkles on the side.

The next birthday in the family belongs to Candace. There's a family dinner planned.

Candace is off to Sacramento this morning for an appointment. The duty of picking Grace up from preschool goes to me. Grace loves riding in the truck. It has a DVD player in the backseat. As far as Grace is concerned, a DVD player in any vehicle is completely over the top.

Grace is looking forward to this afternoons pickup. I think we'll stop on the way home and get a milkshake. That will top off her day and mine. There's nothing like a cold milkshake on a cold February day.

Apparently a lot of parents play movies for their kids on their in car DVD players. If their kids are like Grace, they have to turn into total zombies once the movies begin. There's no getting through to our girl once she's focused on what's playing. We can do without the movies.

Wasn't the essence of traveling any distance in the family car the conversations we had, the games we played and the fun of checking out the points of interest?

Now all kids will remember (if they're lucky) from start to finish on any trip is what they watched on the DVD player.

The player in the truck also has plug-ins for a video game console. Holy cow! There's a whole other ball of wax.

No doubt, the face of the American family is changing. What yesterday's family held as values is no comparison to what the values of today's family are. I don't think that this is a good thing. Evolution in this example has not improved the culture but has worked against it.

With a few exceptions, the family of today is raising a bunch of brats who exhibit poor manners and behavior, who openly defy authority and who feel "entitled" to get what they get without raising a finger to work for it.

We're doing our best to see that Grace is not one of those kids.

I often feel that the American culture is going to hell in a hand basket. Maybe we are.

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Whiskeytown Lake, Very Northern California, United States