Monday, July 28, 2008

BGS Headed for the Big Apple

Sorry i have been M.I.A. lately; work has been beyond hectic, and there is not enough time in my day for everything! A girl needs her sleep :) I will be headed for NYC this week, and will not be able to post until next week....but don't worry, my journey will provide some wonderful feed :) It's a work function that brings me there, so everything is pretty much free :) I Love NY!!! Chow!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Janitor reads historical book on KKK...

This was an interesting story out of Indiana University. A 58 year 0ld white janitor who is majoring in Communications was accused of racial harassment over reading a historical book entitled "Notre Dame vs. the Klan: How the Fighting Irish Defeated the Ku Klux Klan." ...."The book's cover features white-robed Klansman and burning crosses against a backdrop of Notre Dame's campus. It recounts a 1924 riot between Notre Dame students and the Klan in which the students from the Catholic university prevailed."

Kevin Sampson said he tried to explain that the book was a historical account.
"I have an interest in American history," Sampson said. "I was trying to educate myself." The school's officials compared his bringing this book to work as the likes of bringing pornography to work. "You used extremely poor judgment by insisting on openly reading the book related to a historically and racially abhorrent subject in the presence of your black co-workers," Lillian Charleston wrote in a letter to Sampson.

Civil liberties groups and bloggers who took up his cause said Sampson had been wrongly cited for reading a book that is carried by the school's library. "I am sure you see the absurdity of a university threatening an employee with discipline for reading a scholarly work that deals with the efforts of Notre Dame students in the 1920s to fight the KKK," American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana attorney Ken Falk said in a letter to a university lawyer.

The university responded with an April letter to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and the ACLU, in which Chancellor Bantz said that he regretted what had happened and that the letters written to Sampson were not in his personnel file.
But Bantz didn't apologize to Sampson until last week, after a column in The Wall Street Journal sparked renewed criticism. Bantz also wrote to the others involved in the incident, including the co-worker who filed the complaint, said university spokesman Rich Schneider.

Sampson, who still works for the school, said that he accepts the university's apology but that he was hurt by the allegations and has not enjoyed being in the spotlight.
"It's really frustrating for me because I am not the kind of person that they were painting me as," he said.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Books featuring Biracial Kids and Families

I am always on the search for books, magazines or movies that feature biracial children or families. It's hard to find dolls, let alone books that represent a biracial or multiracial background. I have recently stumbled upon several that are wonderful and deserve some recognition! Enjoy!
The pattern on a young girl's quilt comes to life at night and becomes the backdrop for her dream. Although the artist rarely depicts adults in her picture books, she most likely used her own biracial (African-American/white) daughters as models for the children in her books (all published by Greenwillow) which include: Holes and Peeks (1984), The Trek (1985), Now We Can Go (1986) and Where Can It Be? (1985).

A small boy and his sister like it when Daddy's adult sister comes to live with them. The aunt (who is white) finds a place in this happy biracial family: she plays the trumpet and gives the boy and girl lessons. She splashes with them in the biggest puddles. Daddy paints her picture. She helps Mama with her weaving, and they laugh together and listen to the radio. But sometimes the aunt is sad and stares out the window all day. She misses her home, Mama says. Soman's pictures in watercolor and pastel are fresh with the summer greens and flowers of this comfortable house in the country. Words and portraits of the casual, funny young woman are affectionate and poignant, true to the child's viewpoint. Many kids will relate to the story of an adult they love but whose sadness they can't fully understand.

The middle child in a interracial (black/white) English family compares herself to her siblings, speaking matter-of-factly about differences in skin color.

There are two Mrs. Gibsons in this young girl's life, and she remembers both of them lovingly.The older Mrs. Gibson has skin the color of chocolate, big hands, and a big voice, and she gives big, fat hugs. The younger Mrs. Gibson has skin the color of vanilla, writes Japanese, and cooks the family food from her homeland. It is not until the end of the book that readers discover that the first Mrs. Gibson is the girl's grandmother, while the second is her mother. This probably will be a surprise to those too young to figure out the relationship, but even without that pertinent bit of information, children should enjoy getting to know these women. The story does get repetitious at times; however, sturdy, detail-filled paintings will help hold attention. An author's note tells readers that this is Igus' personal story.

A biracial (African-American/white) girl helps out in her family's bakery on Christmas Eve.

The narrator enumerates qualities inherited from her parents--a face that's ``a little dark, a little light,'' somewhere between Mama's ``chestnut brown'' and Papa's fair skin; hair that's ``halfway in-between'' blond and black A mixed-race child celebrates the rich inclusiveness of her life in a joyful picture book. "Just right!" Each double-page-spread shows how members of the family are individuals with likes and dislikes, hobbies and habits that move beyond stereotype. Mom orders vegetarian; Dad orders ribs and bagels; the child likes it all. Mom does ballet; Dad dances to rap. Mom likes African masks; Dad goes for modern art; the child loves the Egyptian part of the museum. Each page has a rhyming refrain that ends, "just right". In keeping with the upbeat text, Trivas' energetic illustrations are full of movement and affection.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ethnically "Diverse" Show

Ok, so it looks like FOX has tired of the constant criticism for its lack of diversity in its line-up of TV shows and cartoons. Not to worry, we will be getting a spin-off of the Family Guy, (which I have yet to view, not particularly my forte) to debut in 2009. It does feature an all star cast set to play the character's voices: Sanaa Lathan, Nia Long and Kevin Michael Richardson. However, the real debacle is the voice of the lead character: Cleveland Brown, whose voiced by a white actor. It will also feature what they consider to be a "colorblind role" which will feature Kevin Michael Richardson as a "redneck." Hmm...not sure where they are headed with all of this? Our only hope is that this particular satire doesn't miss the mark as the New Yorker did with's only funny when the underlying theme is understood as a whole by a majority of the people, not just a handful.

Friday, July 11, 2008

It's our Anniversary!

If I wasn't so tired right now, I would make this a tad bit longer. But I can barely keep my eyes open, and my couch is calling me for a nap; such is the life of a pregnant woman :) Today is our wedding anniversary...5 years married, although we have been together for16 years. We met at the young age of 18, and well...I'm sure you can do the math. He truly is my better half, and I feel blessed to have such a wonderful man to walk through life beside me. My desk calendar features a quote that seems appropriate for today: "When two people choose to become one, you become something even greater than that if you ask God into the circle,"for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer." Because when times are better, God blesses you, and when times area worse, God will bless you even more.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Biracial Best Friends

I have spent a lot of time pondering how our daughter will respond to her first day of kindergarten. She seems to get the general understanding of what lies ahead...but I can't help but be a little skeptical. Her very best friend in the world is a little girl in her class that is also biracial. Our daughter and her act as though they are old lost souls. I always wondered what drew them together. They have a large class filled with many diverse kids, but they have a connection that is unbreakable. Lately, our daughter has been wondering why her friend will not be coming along on the journey to her "new school." Her eyes fill up with tears, and she seems lost when I try and explain to her that she will be able to make new friends. While I know that we will always stay in touch with her best friend; I am praying that her new class will be just as diverse as her preschool, and that there will be at least another little girl who our daughter will be able to relate to. As we watch her grow, a new sense of reality is starting to set in and realize soon enough the challenges of what lies ahead.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Baller on a Budget

It seems that unless your Oprah or Bill Gates, the rising cost of gas, food, and other commidities will have you re-thinking your budget. In our family, we try and watch our spending by eating out with our Entertainment Book, which will typically give you 50% off one entree, or buy an entree and get one free. We go to movies at the local dollar theater, and subscribe to Netflix, where we get a great rate for unlimited movie rentals per month. We also make frequent trips to the local library, which is a great resource for books, cd's and movies, all for free!

Check out these sites for a few extra ways to save your money! coupons, tips and ideas on how to save money at the store! start keeping track of your coupons it's one big garage sale...and a whole lot more i only shop the's 75% off, and a great way to update your home without breaking the bank they have a great assortment of everything, plus shipping is always cheap if you have a teen that was born to shop...fab consignment store Once Upon a Child stores carry everything from baby gear, kids clothes, and maternity i cherish our membership and if you plan on traveling, they have wonderful deals on family vacations.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Cocoa Babies...

I stumbled upon the cutest baby and kids gear last night, and want to share with everyone! The website is: ; and they are very reasonably priced. Here is a sample of some of my favorite picks

Monday, July 7, 2008

Skin Color in the World of Modeling

I just finished reading a not so surprising yet still disturbing article out of Newsweek on Sunday. It focused on the latest edition of Italian Vogue. This month's edition featured all black models, which is supposed to give impetus to other magazines and modeling agencies to hire more diverse models, other than the standard iconic Barbie type. This article is a must-read. I know how important building self-esteem is in young girls, and we have to get past this steroeptyped beauty that is only blond hair and blue eyes. Just when it seems like we take one step forward....

Please click here to read full article...

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Congrats to Venus!!

We always like a good match at Wimbledon...But when the Williams sisters take center court, we pay attention! They are nothing short of phenomenal, and they are always on point when it comes to this dynamic duo match-up. They are great role models on and off the court, and for that: we say thank-you and Congrats Venus!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Backyard BBQ & Desserts

Rocket Pops:
Firecracker Cupcakes:
Midwestern Style Brats:

BBQ Spareribs:

Individual Fruit Pies:

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Jacquelyn Johnson...BGS Girl of the Month

A big congrats to our first BGS Girl of the Month.

Name: Jacquelyn Johnson

Brief Bio: A four time NCAA heptathlon champion from Arizona State University; she has qualified to go to Bejing on this year's 2008 Olympic Track & Field Team.

Fun Fact: She loves chicken parmesan from the Olive Garden; and eats it at least one time during the week of her meet.