Saturday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

Laurie Puhn at the Expecting Words blog wrote a thoughtful column on having boys and secretly wanting a girl. She made, what sounds like, a great book recommendation on raising boys.

This is disappointing: Virginia’s newly elected Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell just reinstated “Confederate History Month” for April 2010, according to the Washington Post. On the upside, both the Washington Post’s poll and its commenters deemed the move racist. Go WaPo readers!  

Hybrid Mom magazine doled out tips on how to manage your time when you work from home.

Here is yet another study I dug up, this one on trans fats, which are commonly found in fried and processed foods. According to an article on MSNBC, women with coronary heart disease who consume trans fats are three times more likely than other women to die of a heart attack.  

The number of babies born to teenagers has dropped 2 percent from 2007 to 2008, according to the Washington Post. As the article pointed out, this is welcome news after two years of steady rises in the teen birth rate.

In related news, ABC News ran a profile on Bristol Palin, how she is handling teen motherhood and what is she doing on the advocacy front.

Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar’s 19th child is home from the hospital after being born three months early, according to Reality TV World.

This is a surprising and kind of sad celebrity split. Jim Carrey and Jenny McCarthy just ended their five-year relationship, according to People magazine.

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


Midday Coffee Break

What’s up?

First of all, there was a lot of questions and confusion yesterday as to how the Senate will pass a healthcare reform bill, which President Obama said is “on the precipice” of passing. In order to get the bill to a final vote, the Democrats need 60 votes, including that of two Independent senators, according to CNN. Right now, Independent Joe Lieberman has said he will not vote for any bill that has a public option or Medicare buy-in for people 55 and up. He is literally the hold-up. Once this bill is up for a final vote, it only needs a simple majority of 51 votes to pass the Senate. Anyways, this story cleared a lot of things up for me.  

Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, is Time Person of the Year.

In an 11-2 vote, the Washington D.C. Council passed a bill to legalize same-sex marriage, according to the Washington Post. If the bill survives a 30-day congressional review period, it will become law in the spring.

Here is an actual example of good corporate behavior. General Mills, the maker of Lucky Charms, Trix and Cocoa Puffs, plans to reduce the amount of sugar to single-digit grams of sugar per serving in its cereals marketed to children, according to the Associated Press. However, the company gave no timeline as to when the sugar reductions will happen.

The Mamasource newsletter had a good thread on homemade gifts for teachers.

A writer at Open Salon recommended anthologies and other book ideas as gifts for writers.

The life of Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar’s 19th baby hangs in the balance, according to People magazine. Josie Brooklyn was born three months early on December 10 and weighs only 1 lb., 6 oz..

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


Tuesday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

Remember my 8-year-old cousin who recently lost her mother to a heart attack? I am happy to report that I have remained in touch with her and her 13-year-old brother. The other day I received a letter from her and my uncle — thank you, Suzanne for the tip! — and an e-mail from my 13-year-old cousin. We are now corresponding via e-mail and looking forward to my next visit to Pennsylvania, probably next summer. This time I plan to stay for two weeks to take the kids to Hershey Park, Dorney Park and some of my favorite childhood hangouts.

Mothers at GreatSchools are debating half-day versus full-day kindergarten. Do you have a preference?

The Sarah Jane Brain Foundation is having an online auction with some really cool prizes, including a Nicole Miller dress and Martha Stewart gift basket. The higher end items are a day at Howard Stern’s studio or dinner with former New York Governors George Pataki and Hugh Carey.

Salon’s Katharine Mieszkowski had an intense and beautiful question and answer session with a mom who delivered severely premature twins who then died. One was a special needs son who died at the age of 8.

Here was some surprising news to this American Idol fan. Alexis Cohen, a memorable two-time tryout from Allentown, Pennsylvania, was struck by a car and killed, according to the Associated Press.

Speaking of reality shows, Salon’s Heather Havrilesky wrote an hilarious review of the dating reality shows More To Love and Dating in the Dark. Have you caught any of them?

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