Tuesday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

The recession is having an impact even on Wal-Mart. According to MSN Money, foot traffic at U.S. stores fell slightly as customers grappled with unemployment and less money to make purchases.

Attention Bay Area moms: a Chilean friend of mine — our Poppygirl’s husband — just created a website to help Chileans in the aftermath of the earthquake. It is a place for people in the Bay Area to host events to help the people of Chile.  

Laurie Puhn over at the Expecting Words blog doled out tips on how to save money on maternity clothes. Where did you buy or acquire your maternity wardrobe?

US News & World Report ran a profile of a mother and sociologist who doled out these two tips to increase parents’ happiness: eat dinner together as a family and change your morning routine to avoid conflict.

As our Katy over at Non-Toxic Kids pointed out, the Senate and House will be holding hearings to possibly reform the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), which regulates the introduction of new or already existing chemicals. The law has not been updated since 1976.

In case you missed it, D.C. now allows same-sex marriage, according to CNN.

In disappointing news: the Catholic Archdiocese in Denver just barred the child of lesbian parents from attending a Catholic school, according to Pam’s House Blend blog. I was heartened to read of the many Catholic protesters on the ground in Denver and Boulder condemning this decision, which was clearly motivated by prejudice. After all, the church is not expelling the students whose parents have fornicated, been divorced, practiced birth control, committed adultery — all which go against church teachings, too. I pray the progressive Catholics on the ground keep the heat on Father Bill and the archdiocese.

In somewhat related news: the moms over at Mamapedia recently doled out tips on how to get your 6-year-old to sit still in church, or at least “enrich” the experience for her. Of course, many of the moms said there is no way to get a 6-year-old to sit through a sermon. What do you think?

Also, did any of you catch movie critic Roger Ebert on the Oprah Winfrey Show last week? My husband and I were in awe at how technology has evolved to help him sound like himself. Ebert had his thyroid, salivary glands and jaw removed due to cancer four years ago. He hasn’t been able to speak without the aid of a computer. A company in Scotland developed a program that helps him speak — and sound — like his old self. Amazing.

Alice in Wonderland, starring Johnny Depp, earned a $116.3 million in its opening weekend — a record for a movie in 3-D, according to the Associated Press. Will you watch it?

Hybrid Mom magazine had a video trailer of the upcoming movie Motherhood, starring Uma Thurman and Minnie Driver, that made me smile.  

What else is in the news? What’s up with you

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Friday Open Thread

IN ENTERTAINMENT NEWS:

Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland will be released on March 5th, and I. Can’t. Wait. Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter? YUM!! However, there is a lot of negative press surrounding the release of the movie. It seems that theater owners are mad about Disney’s decision to shorten the period between the film’s opening and its release on DVD from over four months to three months, in an effort to squeeze every dime from merchandising, DVD sales, and everything associated with it. As a result of the news, many theater chains have threatened to boycott the movie. What do you think? Has Disney jumped the shark? Will Johnny Depp’s movie suffer as a result? Are you going to watch in a theater, or are you going to wait for the DVD release?

IN HEALTH NEWS:

Doctor’s in Cambridge are working on a cure for peanut allergies. The trial will involve increasing doses of peanut flour to 104 British children to build up their tolerance. Do you or anyone you know suffer from peanut allergies? What do you think of this potential cure?

If you’re interested in cutting your cholesteral, this article offers 10 easy food swaps that can help. Suggestions include sprinkling walnuts on your salad and skipping the croutons, sipping red wine instead of cocktails, and using ground turkey instead of ground beef.

FROM THE “WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?!?” FILES:

When I heard about the two teachers at Churchill High School, located in Winnipeg, who got suspended after a “lap dance” performance in front of students, I thought – PLEASE! Just more parents overreacting over something that I’m sure is innocent. Until I saw the video. Yikes. What were they thinking?!?!? Here’s the video, what do you think?

Of course this is an open thread and you are free to discuss whatever you wish. What else is going on?

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