Thursday, October 8, 2015

Thursday Thoughts - back with a bang

1. October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. It thrives on silence. Don't let it.

2. We had an unwelcome guest last week. There was a mouse in the house. I guess it didn't like all of the backyard construction either. I put all of our shit on lockdown and MFD set some humane traps. My Beezelbub came out and I was all screw humane I can't coexist with a Fievel that leaves a trail of turds in its wake. While we were both out Saturday morning the dogs got the mouse traps out of the freaking pantry and went whole hog on them, eating everything in them, destroying them, and leaving the pieces all over the living room. The mouse has not been seen or heard from since, so I can only hope if they did manage to liberate a trapped mouse that the mouse was like fuck these crazy assholes, I'm out.
3. Thanks to the Humans of New York Facebook page for putting a face on the migrant crisis and the situation in Syria. It's easy to say it's a political problem and that we don't have enough resources. And maybe both of those things are true. But it is also a heartbreaking human problem. Who among us doesn't desire safety and security for ourselves and our families? I feel lucky that my ancestors came to America when the door was open and there wasn't an overwhelming chorus of we don't have room or money for you. Given the origins of this country, it's crazy that we are violently opposed to immigrants. Not like all of our ancestors came here legally or became citizens. All of us here in America should be counting our lucky stars our people got here when they did.

4. My lucky dogs got to try out some pumpkin treats for free thanks to our friends at Chewy.com. Do you order from Chewy? I love not having to lug huge bags of dog food at the pet store. They have a great selection. ANYWAY these treats...The Nutro Ultra Oatmeal and Pumpkin Biscuits Healthy Digestion Blend Dog Treats have no corn, gluten, soy, artificial flavors/colors/fillers. They're a little bit for the pugs so I break them up for Geege since he's picky about treat size. They also have antioxidants and are good for dogs with sensitive stomachs. The Grandma Lucy's Organic Pumpkin Oven Baked Dog Treats are so freaking cute, little teddy bears. Perfectly sized for pug mouths, made in the USA, and have no by-products, artificial sweeteners, colors, or flavors. As always, my dogs eat better than I do.
5. I unearthed the first of many things my Mom Mom made for me that will go to my niece, this little afghan. I'll be doling out the other prizes such as the coat I'm wearing in this photo with my Pop as she gets bigger. I know Mom Mom would love that things she made with love have been passed down to her great great granddaughter.

6. Now onto another strong woman I grew up around - my family found a Pancreatic Cancer walk and formed a team to honor my Grandmom, who lost her battle to this quick and painful killer in December 2012. If you are so inclined, donations can be made via my personal page by clicking here. Madeline's Marchers will be walking in the PurpleStride Philadelphia walk on November 7 to raise money for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. 

7. Thank God The Affair is back. I was interested to see Helen's perspective in episode 1. One of the best shows on TV...perspective and memory are so personal and so wildly different for each individual. I love how this show explores that.

8. I can't get into the guns and mass shootings today. You can all probably surmise where I come in on this. I don't want to take your goddamn guns...but I don't see how other advanced countries with strict gun laws do not have these problems and yet we still hang on to it not being about guns. Those other countries have mental illness, crazy motherfuckers, violence, drugs, gangs, crime, criminals, bad people who have guns - ALL the things we blame our mass shootings on instead of guns...but they don't have mass shootings because it's not easier for them to buy guns than it is to buy a pack of cigarettes. People in other countries don't get our love of our guns above the love of our children - they think we are insane because we will not do anything except point fingers and yell at each other. I have to agree with them. I also don't get wishing there was someone else in these mass shootings who was armed to take the crazy shooter down. Now we just want civilians to gun it out in the street? What the fuck? Every time I voice these opinions around people who disagree with me, they patronize me like I'm a wittle wady who has no idea what I'm talking about. I'm an intelligent woman and I've thought it through. We just think differently. I don't respond well to being patronized.

I will second Momastery's words on this: "We've got BOOKS banned in this country to 'keep our kids safe' but we won't ban assault weapons to keep them safe. Lord, have mercy. And please let us not use tired arguments like "Bad guys will get guns anyway." Yes, bad guys will also run red lights. We still have traffic laws. Bad guys will still rape.We still have laws against rape. Let us not be ridiculous while our babies are dying." -Glennon Melton

Welp. I guess I got into guns.

9. Let's see...I addressed violence against women in a roundabout way with domestic violence awareness, said I'm open to accepting refugees from war torn countries, and talked about gun reform. I'll just round it out by saying I believe in people having bodily autonomy, I make regular quarterly donations to Planned Parenthood that increase with size as the social conservatives increase in craziness, and I support gay marriage. Waiting for the Tea Party to break down my door and shit on my head in five...four...three...two...

10. E-card of the week...

Whenever I take a few weeks off, Thursday Thoughts always gotta come back with a bang. 
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Linking up with Kristin and Joey for Stuff & Things

Stuff, Things, etc.

47 comments:

  1. Steph, Steph, Stephhhhhhhhhh...there are just too many thoughts and things for me to comment. I read your #1 and I think "it is also breast cancer awareness month...why do we have things in our world like breast cancer and domestic violence??" sigh

    Re: your second thought - one time, I lived in a house with two roommates, and we had rodent problems. I came home one night to my male roommate trying to let a mouse go into the woods. That fucker kept running in the back door. I joined the efforts by grabbing a bucket and trapping him. I tried to scoot the bucket to the door, lifted the bucket so my roommate could use the broom to sweep him outside. Fucker ran back inside again. Tried again, and roommate whacked him with the broom. He seemed to be writhing in pain. My roommate nor I wanted that to happen. I ran away while he disposed of the mouse. We got drunk that night.

    Lovely pic with your Grandmom.

    Guns. I don't understand. From the age of zero to 17, I did not live with a gun in my home. But. I return to Texas, and my dad (an educated, retired professional) has a sawed-off shotgun; my mom has lived with a guy since I was 18 and no longer in the home who has more guns than we can count; my aunt & uncle (who are successful, educated entrepreneurs) have everything from handguns to assault rifles; my cousins have guns, my best friends have guns, etc. etc. I truly feel like the last 10 years (8 of those I've lived in Australia), the gun ownership by people in my life has increased significantly. And, I don't understand. And, these gun owner family members and friends of mine are so vocal about their "need" for these guns. I don't understand. I'm viewed as the woman who moved away and am losing some of my American-membership card privileges by not understanding it.

    I moved to a country that had a mass-shooting in 1996...immediately, a conservative Prime Minister led the way for initiatives to have much more stringent gun laws. There has not been a mass shooting since. Yes, the population is lower. Yes, the crime rate in general is lower. But, you know what I notice (more so than the lack of mass shootings)? There is not a news report every single night in my city telling the story of an armed robbery gone wrong with a service station attendant shot dead, or a employee of a fast food restaurant, or an owner of a cleaners, or whatever business of the day had an armed robbery and murder. In Houston, it seemed like every other day, there was a clerk at a convenience store or liquor store or food establishment getting shot during a robbery. And that was only Houston. Not the entire state of Texas. Not the entire US.

    Can you imagine if there were less of these crimes across the nation and less mass shootings too? No. Unfortunately, many Americans can't imagine less gun crime, so they've convinced themselves they need guns too.

    Hmmm...Maybe I should have written my own post about guns. Oops.

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  2. Loving this post, and all of the amazingly witty comments and thoughts here! I found your blog through another blog and I'm so glad that I did!
    My uncle died of pancreatic cancer and my mom has since been involved in several of the Pancreatic Cancer organizations. I think it's wonderful that you're doing a walk in honor of your grandma!
    Looking forward to following along!

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  3. Girrrrl. I could reply with my own post back to this! Ugh, we had a mouse once. I'd like to tell you we took care of it humanely, but we did not :(. I'm not sure how I feel about gun control....either way. But I also agree with all you said, so there's that.

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  4. I'm obsessed with those dog treats that look like Teddy Grahams! :) Also, why not come out with guns blazing on your first TT post back. (pun not intended, but left in...HA!)

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  5. I'm glad you wrote this. Gun control isn't something I've thought very much about and these people make some really good points. And our country's distaste for "foreigners" is utterly ridiculous considering our origins. A friend of mine was complaining the other day that her child's school does announcements in English and then in Spanish. She said they "shouldn't have to" do that and the kids should all speak English. But... what's the big deal exactly? Having an extra language is in no way harming her child's education - if anything, they might learn something extra. I do understand that having a child in school who doesn't understand the material could be problematic, but that's an issue for that child's family to deal with. If anything, we should get with the program and teach multiple languages in school like pretty much every other country in the world (something a little more extensive than a couple years of Spanish in high school).

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  6. I absolutely snorted at Fievel's evident demise due to the pugs. Hilarious but probably so true. Those three sasspots? I'm getting out of their way too... especially after they eat my food. I'm SO TIRED of the refugee debate. These people have witnessed horrors we cannot even imagine. People don't FLEE THEIR HOMES BECAUSE LIFE IS GOOD. We need to have a little compassion and quit thinking that everyone is going to make life hard for us. Newsflash: it's not and it won't. PARTICULARLY COMPARED TO THE ATROCITIES GOING ON IN THESE COUNTRIES. Wtf. I just can't with the debate. I can't even really talk about it. I have friends who work in refugee camps in Jordan, and I work with kids who have *finally* won the immigration lottery and arrived here from refugee camps... and no one can EVEN IMAGINE. NO ONE. And yet, our local media refuses to tell the amazing stories of these kids because "they don't buy papers".... so no one will ever REALLY know.... because we aren't reporting news anymore, we're pushing political agendas that fit narratives that allow people to continue being comfortable in their ignorance. And... you already know how I feel about guns. Off the soapbox for today...

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  7. that's the one thing i never understood about the US - the gun laws. why are they so lax when clearly, there's a problem?

    canada has some pretty stringent gun laws and i wouldn't even know where someone would even buy a gun/ammo. i dont even know a single person who owns a gun "for protection"; in fact, ask any canadian citizen (who isn't a hunter) if they feel more protected/safe with guns around them and i guarantee 100% of them would say ARE YOU FUCKING CRAZY??

    don't get me wrong, canada has some fucked up people too - we've had mass shootings here (last one i heard about was at a party about 10yrs ago in alberta but that was more of an accident since the guy went after one other person who happened to be at a party but other people got involved trying to stop the shooter hence others got shot in the crossfire) and people getting shot (but this is mainly concentrated in the known bad areas and basically robbers or drug dealers having it out) but the things i hear about the states on the news with the amount of innocent shootings because some guy went postal is astounding. the government needs to wake up and get a handle on that shit!

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  8. I see both sides of the gun issue & I haven't finished enough of my coffee yet to get into writing coherent thoughts. Proof: I read humane traps as human traps (& typed it as mumane...) at first which made me make a weird face & then giggle. I love the humans of New York page. I don't follow it but I love when people share/like certain ones & then I'll go in & scan through them for awhile.

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  9. LOVE that tweet about gun control - sometimes I read things like that and it's just so obvious how insane the anti-gun-control argument is, especially when a lot of those people have such STRONG VIEWS on everything else. Trevor Noah (new Daily Show host) had a great segment on this and how Republicans are often pro-life, well...except when it comes to mass shootings. Also...sorry about the mouse. :::shudders:::

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  10. SC is the number one state in the nations for women who die because of domestic abuse, such a sad fact but it amazes me every time. I'm always on the look out for signs of abuse.

    I can't give K my baby blanket made by my great grandmother because I still use it as a lap blanket at my desk. MY BLANKET!! :)

    Guns, ugh. I love having a gun for my own protection when Tyson is not home BUT I hate that I have to teach my child what to do if someone shoots up her school. I'd be willing to give my gun up to save my child any day of the week, I have other objects I can protect myself with if necessary.

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  11. Canada isn't perfect....but I sure am glad we have gun laws, marriage equality and a host of other things that seem to cause a lot of controversy south of the border!

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  12. Gotta share this one.

    And Fievel??? hahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

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  13. Pancreatic cancer took my grandmother too... hate that stupid cancer so much!!!!
    Yeah - I don't remember Fievil pooping everywhere he went in the cartoon :)

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  14. Laughing so hard at the end of this post. You little rebel, you. And #3...YES. You put into words how I feel about the whole situation.

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  15. Love that you called the mouse intruder Fievel - amazing!

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  16. Oh my god the mouse. I don't even know what I would do. I have the most useless dog and cat in the world, they wouldn't go near it.
    I don't even know what to comment on all the rest, so many things! Love what you do for your family - the walks, the donations, the blanket - you're a good person :)
    Something needs to be done about guns but I have no idea what. We have the strictest laws here in Chicago, and yet, we have the highest violent gun related deaths. (All gang related on the south side though, not school shootings, not that it's different but it's definitely a gang/poverty thing as well as a gun thing here.) No idea what the answer is.

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  17. You had me laughing with the crazy dogs scaring away the mouse. And then nodding in silent praise with EVERYTHING ELSE. I don't articulate my thoughts on these tough topics well and I admire you for doing so.

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  18. I saw a meme on FB recently about how there are sooo many laws regarding women's health/rights, but absolutely zero towards men about birth control or vasectomies. I'm so completely against defunding PP. It's sad to me that politicians are using it to prevent the budget passing, mostly because I'm a govt contractor and if there's no budget, there's no paycheck.

    Part of me wants a gun, just to have one and because I enjoy target shooting, but I haven't owned or needed one for 30 years. What's the point now?

    I had a mouse in the house once and the first time I saw it I was on the phone with my Dad and I started SCREAMING. I did NOT put down humane traps (because we had some at work and free stuff is the best), which was worse for me than the mouse because I was home and HEARD the mouse go into the trap. It's not a loud clap like people anticipate.. No no no. just a quiet little thud.. then the sound of feet scratching on the floor, then another softer thud as the mouse... perishes. You better believe I left that rodent for my BF-at-the-time to dispose of. Nope, nope, nope.

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  19. After seeing The Good Lie I was heartbroken with how difficult and hard it was to seek refuge. If someone is willing to work and can get shelter here legally I am all for it. We should all have a way to be safe. The ease in which people can get assault rifles is ridiculous. I am not a gun person and if someone wants a handgun for their protection fine but assault rifles have no place in the streets.

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  20. My cat has been the best thing ever for mouse prevention.

    Guns. This is a huge soapbox issue for me which is why I've refrained from writing about it. I went ballistic on Friday to Scott. It involved laws and the Constitution (specifically, the picking and choosing of which rights we stand up for and which ones we're okay to trample on) and how there are three places people should feel safe (home, school, places of worship) and that's been stripped away and blaming mental health issues and a whole host of other topics. I have to stop now or this will turn into that post.

    I love the idea of family heirlooms.

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  21. Spot on today. I often times want to rant about current events but I'm not as politically eloquent or nearly as educated about the matters as you are. Good thing you do it so well.

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  22. I will never understand the argument against an inclusive immigration policy and cmprehensive immigration reform. Any point someone against making it easier for people to come into and become citizens of this country makes sounds to me like a child throwing a fit that they don't want to invite the whole class to their birthday party.

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  23. My old line of work had me watching people die of pancreatic cancer by the masses - tough stuff there. Mice, ugh gross. Social issues today suck....quite frankly the world we live in is pretty sucky too.

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  24. I don't feel like I have what I need to comment on everything here, but I do so love that you put a voice to the things I'm thinking and feeling about the state of our world and society so often. Thank you for doing that.

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  25. yes to #3. seriously, people in Oz are like that and I'm just like do you know how this country started?! Convicts, immigrants, the lot of us. People tend to forget they (or their ancestors) went through the same thing when they are safe and sound, you know? like just because it doesn't apply to you anymore doesn't mean it doesn't apply at all. how would they feel if something happened to America and the world needed to find a place for all the americans? surely you would expect and hope another country would take you in.

    Guns. I just don't understand it. Basically everything that Erin said about Oz and our gun laws. I agree with everything you said. It just doesn't make any sense. I thought for sure the gun laws would change after the school shootings.. the movie theatre shootings.. nope. nope. nope. WHAT WILL IT TAKE?!

    I just hate shit like this. I don't understand it.

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  26. man, there is so much goodness in this post! first, domestic violence needs a voice, it's just not talked about enough.

    #8. i was just talking to my husband about this at lunch today. i honestly don't know what to do. but there needs to be something done about mental health. i feel like it's something we aren't addressing in a proactive way.

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  27. That pink coat is tremendous...it is like you are a frosted cupcake!

    I can't even with all of the PP, immigration, guns, etc. shit going on lately. It makes me want to slam my head against my desk repeatedly. I love the HONY Facebook page; somedays it is hilariously entertaining and other days just makes me so sad.

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  28. I feel like domestic violence is an issue that gets overlooked by so many. And sadly, we don't even know the real number on how many victims of domestic violence there are because most people that go through it don't even report it. I was laughing through the incident with the dogs and the mouse. I just cant do critters. Not even a little!!!

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  29. Agh the mouse situation freaks me out! "fuck these crazy assholes. I'm out" has me cracking up. Hopefully it has removed itself from the house and backyard.

    Lola got the same pumpkin and oatmeal biscuits. I was so impressed with the size of the bag. Those will last a while for just one dog.

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  30. I had a conversation with a senior client where he explained how all the problems in our country (every single one) was due to immigrants. Errr.... What now?! And I couldn't disagree too strongly on account of him being a client. It made me so cross. Here in the UK we're all from all over the place too, some of us just a bit longer ago than others, and I love living in such a multicultural society. Nobody becomes a refugee just for a laugh. It's not actually a very funny situation to put yourself in.

    As for guns... I continue to be baffled at gun laws and gun crime in the US. I just don't get it, and I don't get how more people don't see the obvious correlation between mass shootings and the availability of guns? Or they do see it but don't want to act? Baffled. The things absolutely terrify me, and I couldn't imagine going to a shop where they're sold, let alone owning one myself.

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  31. As a first generation American, I get incensed about immigration. At one point we were all immigrants unless your Native American and I am sure they are not the ones arguing immigration.

    The protesters outside of Planned Parenthood locations make me want to turn into the hulk and hurt somebody. Especially the women, we have fought too hard for too long to have this still be an issue. Get your laws off my body.

    Lastly, Chewy is awesome and if you have an American Express they have a special offer if you spend $50 you get $15 back - pretty awesome.

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  32. My dogs eat better than me and also get more regular hair cuts.

    As for the gun violence, so so so sad. So sad. You're right. We ban stupid stuff in this country and yet guns, we can't because of some special people who have lots of money to throw at their representatives in office.

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  33. My grandfather passed away from pancreatic cancer too. All I remember is he was diagnosed, we were able to see him a couple of weeks later (they lived upstate), then I got the call one day at work from my dad that he had passed. It's such an awful cancer (not that any other type is better). I love what your passing down to your niece. My mother in law is an amazing knitter and I love the stuff she has made for my daughter. Blankets, sweaters, knit dresses...so many nice things. The gun violence is just so disheartening. There has to be a resolution. I don't think when the Constitution was written the founding fathers could have imagined what we're dealing with today. It's like no place is safe...schools, movie theaters, colleges, shopping malls. It's just sad.

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  34. Helen's perspective completely caught me off guard this week. I loved that. Have you seen The Leftovers? There was a major does of WTF in Sunday's season 2 premiere.

    I built an outdoor water bucket mouse trap (my own water bucket challenge if you will ha ha) and it was incredibly inhumane. Oh well. They damage our outdoor property.

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  35. Thanks for mentioning domestic violence awareness month. Even though the NFL is all about Breast Cancer Awareness in October (and that's great too!) we do annual training on domestic violence annually as well. Sadly, because of things that have come out re: NFL players in the past handful of years, but I'm glad we get the training and people are at least talking about it more.

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  36. I love this post so much. The ridiculous things people say about immigration and gun laws (well, and women's reproductive rights, for that matter) just piss me off. I wanted to leave a much more eloquent comment than this, but my brain isn't cooperating tonight. I agree with everything you said, though, and that quote you shared from Momastery is pretty much perfect.

    On a lighter note, the mousetrap debacle with the pugs cracked me up. I also love that you're passing on some special items to your niece, and the picture of you in that adorable pink fluffy coat!

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  37. Love the pictures of your Grandparents. I was open mouthed shocked at the pug mouse trap incident.

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  38. Thanks for sharing, for #8 especially. It hits close to home and it's so disheartening knowing we keep having mass shootings and we keep doing nothing about them. The quote you posted with it is so true. I don't think anyone advocating for gun control is so delusional to think that stricter laws will mean we never have to deal with this ever again. I don't know what the exact solution is, I just know that our current practice of essentially allowing it to continue to happen isn't working so...maybe we try something else?

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  39. I love that you're passing down your blanket... so sweet and such a good memory! :)

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  40. Just reading this now Friday at 1 PM. Lola and Lexie took up my day yesterday. Lola happy, Lexie, not a happy thing. This entire blog is awesome, as usual and you are spot on about everything. The gun thing is so horrible. And the female and gay things, too. Taking our minds off of how the 1% are raping our bank accounts along with our rights. And not giving a damn about domestic violence- they love women barefoot and pregnant F---kers!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God and Goddess speed to eliminating and lessening all of the evil. End greed for power and money. Love, your MOMMA

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  41. HANDS IN THE AIR EMOJI!! Steph for president!!! YES, YES, AND MORE YESSSSS!!
    Okay, I'm done. Congrats on your new niece :)
    XOXO

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  42. I have to say that I love everything that you have said here and I feel the exact same way. I actually have a post publishing tomorrow that touches on both domestic violence and guns, but not like this, and has to do with my own personal experiences. I cannot agree with you more. I don are as often as I can to Planned Parenthood, am pro-choice because whatever I personally would do doesn't matter - women should choose themselves, I would also gladly accept refugees and am proud of the countries that have. Preach on!

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  43. Great post and words Steph!!!! Well said. I don't know why it's so difficult to admit it's a problem of guns + mental health. Both things, but they are just unwilling. Grrr.

    In other news, the mouse story was really funny. I hope the little guy got out!

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  44. Love all your thoughts about gun laws and I 100% agree with all of it. I get so tired of the "I need to protect myself" reasoning for why gun laws should remain as they are and why people need a gun. It's like don't you see you probably wouldn't feel as strong a need to protect yourself if the law were more strict. I just DO NOT understand their reason at all.
    Also, the mouse in the house thing is so much more tragic than you could ever expect. There was a mouse in my house a while ago. I even wrote a post about it somewhere in the archives that basically makes fun of the insanity it induced. It was ridiculous!

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    1. Your mouse experience made me go back into my archives and OMG if I wasn't in the same frame of mind as you! There's a Mouse In My House

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