Goalie – It’s a Keeper

My son Daniel has released a new iPhone app called Goalie.

Updates coming soon.

Goalie Day View

Goalie Day View

All-in-One

Goalie combines features from to-do apps, reminder apps, and goal achieving apps and puts them all in one place. Goalie will remind and track your progress on your way to develop those habits you’ve always wanted. It will also help you cruise through those items on your to-do list.

Repeatable Reminders

Goalie’s built-in reminders uses the device’s notifications center so you’ll never forget a thing. Set unlimited reminders easily for any day of the week with the quick add or custom time menus. Being reminded to do something has never been so fast!

After Jack got Goalie, he has never missed fetching a pail of water. I love how I can see all my goals on one screen. It motivates me to keep going. — Jill

Goalie Multiple Reminders View

Goalie Multiple Reminders View

Track your Progress

You should not have to painfully view the progress of your goals one at a time. Goalie allows you to see all of your goals progress in one spot with its week view.

Customizable

Easily change the colors of each of your goals. With Goalie’s color menu choosing a color has never been easier. Don’t care much for choosing colors? Enable rainbow colors in settings that will automatically assign a color to each of your goals.

Features

  • Keeps track of daily to-dos or tasks
  • High, Medium, and Low priorities
  • Todos carry over to the next day or until you complete them
  • Fully customizable reminders for any time or day of the week
  • Unlimited repeatable reminder
  • See weekly progress easily with the tap of one button
  • Multiple reminders for any task, goal, or habit
  • Set your own colors
  • Sort by title, priority, completion status, and type

App Store

The Goalie Story

I found it very frustrating to use the habit/goal tracker apps from the app store. The main reason was they didn’t remind me to do the goal or habit I was working on at specific times. They would mainly just remind me to enter in information once a day and by the time it finally reminded me, it was already too late to do the task.

Goalie makes it easy to set multiple reminders for goals or tasks on the specific day of week and time you want. The reminders repeat forever, or until you complete the task. For example, I have it remind me to make my bed at 8:30 am, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and at 7:50 am Tuesday and Thursday.

Another frustration with to-do and task apps is that you cannot have them repeat on a daily basis. Goalie allows for tasks to repeat daily, and plans to have goals repeat on specific days. That way your tasks for the day are there every week, when you need them.

Goalie allows for progress of ALL your goals to been seen at once. With the touch of one button you can see how you are doing on your goals from week to week. Goalie also allows for a “Goal amount” to be set. So if my goal was to meet two new people, I could set my goal as two. Then my goal would not be marked as completed until I had recorded it twice.

Extra Fizzy Homemade Carbonated Beverages

Have you ever been disappointed with how flat your homemade rootbeer or soda is? After spending an hour watching rootbeer and dry ice bubble in a cooler you would expect something fizzy, sadly the concoction never lives up to expectations.

In order have carbonation strong enough to spray soda everywhere you need three things:

  1. Cold temperatures
  2. CO2
  3. High pressure

The drink cooler plus dry ice method provides both CO2 and cold temperatures but is missing the crucial third ingredient, high pressure, and therefore makes flat soda.

Commercially, high pressure CO2 is provided by a CO2 tank and regulator setup as seen here. Unfortunately the equipment is somewhat expensive.

Another method of obtaining pressurized CO2 is yeast, sugar, and a sealed bottle. The drawback to this method is it takes 3-4 days.

Finally, and this is the extra fizzy quick cheap method, using a safety valve, sealed bottle, and dry ice. Now you probably know that a tightly sealed bottle and dry ice combine to make a powerful dry ice bomb. This is due to the dry ice building enormous CO2 pressure until the bottle ruptures. To harness this high pressure CO2 without creating an explosion, a soda bottle is fitted with a pressure relief valve.

The pressure now rises until it reaches the set point of the relief valve. The valve then continuously and safely vents the excess CO2, always keeping the bottle at the perfect carbonating pressure. This results in deliciously fizzy carbonated beverages in about ten minutes.

Here is a recipe I tried:

  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 10 cups cold water
  • 1/4 (2 ounce) bottle root beer extract

Mix well, pour into carbonator bottle, add several chunks of dry ice, screw cap on tightly, allow 10 minutes to carbonate then enjoy.

This is how I attached the safety valve to the bottle cap:

Drill a hole in the soda bottle cap

Fit the safety valve to the cap

Secure valve with the locknut

Valve and bottle

The valve and locknut can be ordered from mcmaster.com:

  • $5.26 48435K71 Extend-Life ASME Pop-Safety Valve W/Test Ring Brass, Medium Flow, 1/8 NPT Male, 60 PSI
  • $1.67 50785K141 Med-Pressure Brass Threaded Pipe Fitting 1/8 Pipe Size, Locknut

Be aware that carbonated water (carbonic acid) can corrode the brass valve. Keep soda off of your safety valve and store soda capped with a regular cap.

Avast!

Pirate Rick

After me eye surgery Friday, t’ first thin’ I wanted t’ do was buy me a pirate patch. I already owned t’ cutlas and t’ shirt.

Caucus

Caucus meeting

For Them That Honour Me

Keeping The Sabbath Day HolyWhen Jill and I were raising our children we taught them that Sunday was the Sabbath Day, a day when our family refrains from recreation and focuses our attention on God.

Well, that was the theory. In practice it must have seemed to the children to be a list of shalt nots stretching into the eternities.

For example, on a Sunday there was no shopping, no television, no video games, and no newspaper (parents were included). When we went on vacation, it was usually from early Monday to late Saturday.

Around twenty-five years ago a pamphlet published by the Church was distributed to families. Today I don’t recall anything about the pamphlet except that it had a list of could dos on one of its pages. I cut out the list, pinned it to the bulletin board, and implemented many of the suggestions.

No doubt my children appreciated the Church’s diligence.

  1. Read the scriptures, conference reports, and Church publications.
  2. Study the lives and teachings of the prophets.
  3. Prepare Church lessons and other Church assignments.
  4. Write in journals.
  5. Pray and meditate.
  6. Write to or visit relatives and friends.
  7. Write to missionaries.
  8. Enjoy uplifting music.
  9. Have family gospel instruction.
  10. Hold family council meetings.
  11. Build husband-wife relationships.
  12. Read with a child.
  13. Do genealogical research, including the four generation program and family or personal histories.
  14. Sing Church hymns.
  15. Read uplifting literature.
  16. Develop appreciation for the cultural arts.
  17. Plan family home evening study and activities.
  18. Plan other family activities.
  19. Friendship nonmembers.
  20. Fellowship neighbors.
  21. Visit the sick, the aged, and the lonely.
  22. Hold interviews with family members.

The list is still there on the bulletin board. I may add number 23: “Blog about the Gospel.”

Hat tip Chariots of Fire

From Muslim To Mormon

GwenGwen, who adopted the name Khadijah as a Muslim, is retired and lives in Portland, Oregon, devoting as much of her time as possible to volunteer work and writing youth and young adult Science Fiction. Gwen publishes on line, but wants to shift to self-publishing in her next book.

It all seems so surreal at times, my how the years have flown past me. From the time I was about 12, I wanted to know how we all got here. I wanted to know how things happened; how all this complexity around us came to be. Somehow, despite the abusive home life, and the darkness about me, I just knew that the beauty and complexity about us all is not an accident, and later I would begin to see that unifying intelligence could easily be called God.

I wouldn’t really address the idea of God again until my late 20’s, when I began to realize that certain things around me could not be random. I also felt that someone had helped me at several points in my life and the feelings became so strong that I began to really want to thank whoever was doing these things for me. So, in a series of what I consider to be God driven incidents I read the Bible and realized that the help must have been coming from God.

Those who are accustomed to the Holy Spirit working in their lives won’t find this surprising and years later it is very clear that Heavenly Father was pursuing me long before I knew it. In one series of events in 1974, one evening I had stood on the porch and marvelled at the astonishingly beautiful sunset; feeling extremely fascinated with how it happened.

Later that night, I watched a program that reviewed the book, “Late Great Planet Earth”, and the very next day, I saw the book laying on my boss’s desk. I borrowed it and spent the next two weekends reading it and comparing the passages quoted with the various versions of the Bible in the house. At the time none of us were Christians and I still do not know how the Bibles came to be there.

Me wearing a traditional hijab

Me wearing a traditional hijab

At the end of the second week end, I was on my knees, praying to God to bring me wisdom, and forgive my sins. After all, I had tiny children and knew that I was not a good parent. I was very worried about damaging them.

Interestingly, in the next 30 plus years, I’d find several different churches, but always felt as if something was lacking. After 9/11, my search for the one true God would even lead me into Islam for several years. I didn’t want to casually worship God, the only one who loved me, but I wanted to do it with devotion and obedience.

Along the way in life were many blessings and heart breaking hardships, yet I kept searching for the true God. In my early experiences with Christianity, many seemed to preach about Jesus on Sunday, but then be against the power there in. In several churches, it all seemed to be a surface experience and I’d repeatedly find that I felt too evil, too lost to ever be a real part of it all. Ever conscious of my own faults and being hated by those around me, I entered Islam.

For a few years, I loved the praying, highly organised and involving absolute prostration before God, I felt as if this was best for me. The problem is that Islam is a very closed society, and if you are not Middle Eastern and speak Arabic you are never really accepted. I loved Allah SWT1 and worshipping him, but was very hurt by the way that some Muslims treated me. No matter how hard I tried, it felt like I was failing God.

So it was, on March 13th, 2011 I found myself in Ohio driving back toward the apartment I shared with two other women in Painesville. I’d been out doing research on the Amish because I’d endured a harsh childhood at the hands of an Amish step father, and wanted to make sense of what I’d experienced.

Kirtland Temple

The Kirtland Temple is a National Historic Landmark, now owned and operated by the Community of Christ

So, this day, in the afternoon, I was driving north and began to pass through the tiny community of Kirtland, Ohio. As I drove, I saw a strange looking building in the distance and gradually realised that it looked like a church.

Something in my heart leapt, and I felt compelled to pull over and look at the structure. I looked Kirtland up on my Android and realised that the structure before me was the first Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints! Over the years, I’d had several brief encounters with various types of Mormons, but I never got involved.

I was very fascinated with early American history, and knew that I had to see that building; go inside. Well, it was all locked up and the visitor’s center for that church was too; I would have to return another day. Getting back in my car, I started home, realising that I had no idea when it would be open.

Then I passed an LDS church and knowing that they had to be connected, pulled in when I saw cars there. Surely they would not object to just one question from me? At the time I was still Muslim, and dressed appropriately for a Muslim woman to include the abaya and hijab2. I worried that they would be mean and reject me as a terrorist as a few had done.

To my utter astonishment, the missionary sisters warmly received me, even after I said that I was just interested in American History and not becoming Mormon. After all, I was Muslim. One visit became two; two became four and soon I was attending the Mosque on Friday and Mormon Church on Sunday.

It did not take long for the differences and similarities between my two faith experiences to begin to become troublesome. I was certainly sure that the LDS I met were much friendlier than the Muslims I knew, and they spoke my language. In Islam, the way that Jesus Christ was handled always troubled me, and speaking of it, got me in trouble.

The baptism of Jesus Christ

Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him

The missionary sisters and church members in the Kirtland area, gradually won my heart and helped me to believe that Christians could be loving and accepting, though I still have reservations about the LDS calling themselves Christian, because the Christian denominations I had previously experienced were certainly not as loving and supportive.

We jokingly settled on the idea that the LDS were version 1.0 and everyone else were version 8.1. It would take me some time to appreciate that the LDS do not speak harshly of other faiths, and that is one of the key issues that attracted me to them. I felt I was ready for baptism, but in reality, I had much to learn.

Almost three months passed, and when it was time to return to my home city of Portland, Oregon, I was convinced that I wanted to become a member of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints. It was difficult to think about giving up my Muslim faith, but no one pressured me, and I am convinced that if I wanted to attend church in my abaya and hijab, no one would say a thing.

I was comfortable with Muslim prayer, my abaya and hijab, and the modesty and devoutness of my life, and still miss the security I feel in my hijab. It is difficult for some to understand; perhaps part of my soul will always be Muslim.

Finally on January 29th, 2012 I was baptised and there were lots of well-wishers there. Two of the sister missionaries who’d been my teachers in Kirtland were now at Provo and they drove up to Portland, Oregon. I was somehow uncomfortable with being baptised in pants, so they allowed me to find a white dress for it. I think that perhaps most of the church attended, including my roommates who are not Christian. It all flew by in a blur for me. I was overwhelmed.

Rainbow that appeared the day of my baptism

Rainbow that appeared in Portland on the day of my baptism


For the first time in my life, I felt loved, really loved for me, not who others wanted me to be. Early on, there had been questions about my believing in the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith as a Prophet and the standard things that the LDS believe.

I kept telling them that for me those things were not difficult because I believed in Allah SWT, the prophet Muhammad PBUH3, and the Qur’an, so the step on to the rest of the truth was not difficult. I believe that Heavenly Father still talks to us through the prophet, Thomas S Monson. And, I believe that Muhammad PBUH was one of the prophets.

I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Notes

  1. SWT is Subhanahu Wa tala and that means “glorified and exalted is he”, it’s an honorific that is seen as required respect when they use the word Allah. Muslims believe in one God, and Allah is merely the word God in Arabic. We worship the same God.
  2. I still believe in the practice of Hijab, but mostly don’t do it nowadays to blend into American culture. This Youtube video provides a great explanation into the real reason for Hijab.
  3. PBUH is another honorific and is used after the name of any of the prophets. It means, “Peace be upon him”. Muslims recognise the same prophets as Christians.

Credits

Raising a Creative Child

Ada
My guest writer today is Ada, a stay-at-home mother of two rambunctious preschoolers. Ada enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and reading when she’s not playing Mommy and blogging about it at Ada Shot Me.

Creativity is used every day, in every aspect of our lives. When we think of creativity, we usually think of it in the context of art, but according to Wikipedia, creativity is “the phenomenon whereby a person creates something new (a product, a solution, a work of art, a novel, a joke, etc.) that has some kind of value.”

What does this mean to me? It means that if I want to raise a child who can solve her own problems, she needs to be creative. I feel that creativity is a necessary component of a child’s education, but how do we raise a creative child?

Foster Exploration

In the dryer - fostering exploratioSome children may seem to be born more creative than others; however, their creative tendencies are likely due to an environment that is open to creative expression, rather than stifling the child’s explorations.

In our home, we foster an atmosphere of stimulation. If my three-year-old wants to color the grass pink, because it’s her favorite color, I don’t say, “grass is green, not pink.” This would stifle her creative exploration.

And instead of having a long list of items within reach that they can’t touch, we set out items that they can touch, feel, sense – in essence, explore.

Fun in Exercise

Fun in exerciseJust as a child needs to exercise her muscles to help them grow, creative “muscles” need stretching and exercising.

Exercising our muscles can either be a grueling, hard and painful experience or a fun and enjoyable experience.

Likewise, exercising our child’s mind can either be tedious or joyful.

Have fun with your child – play games that will provoke thought and imagination, let them explore, or give them a bunch of objects and just let them create.

Reading, Writing, and a Rhythm

Several studies have indicated that reading to children before preschool-aged will help them do well in all facets of formal education, as well as helping them to have basic speech skills.

The other night my 3-year-old came up to me and said, “Mommy, I’m not feeling well. I can’t eat my dinner.” Really she just wanted dessert, but I was impressed with her proper use of grammar, her sentence structure, as well as her solution.

Reading writing and a rhythmWhen reading with a child, try the following:

  • Ask questions. “Where’s the bird?”, “What is that man doing?”, or “What is going to happen next?”
  • Let the child fill in the blanks. “Itsy Bitsy Spider went up the water ______.” (Pause and let the child say “spout”.)
  • Let them “read” to you. Even if the child can’t read words, they can make up their own story using the pictures. You’d be amazed with how much of the story they pick up from listening to you read it to them.
  • Have toddlers and preschoolers act out the story or draw it.

What are some other ways to promote creativity in our children?

Ron Paul Stuffed Pasta Shells

Ron Paul Quick'n Easy Stuffed Pasta Shells

Ron Paul Quick'n Easy Stuffed Pasta Shells


Since receiving a copy of The Ron Paul Family Cookbook, Adelaide has made Oreo Cake, Original Chocolate Chip Cookies, Banana Nut Bread, Orange Rolls, and now Ron Paul Quick’n Easy Stuffed Pasta Shells. If you have the cookbook, the recipe is found on page 5.

Adelaide says:

Ron Paul Stuffed Pasta ShellsI halved the recipe, and still had half of them left over. They were really rich and filling. I paired it with breadsticks and a salad, and it made for a fairly quick and delicious dinner.

I especially liked the part in the recipe that gave directions for making this as a freezer meal. I think I’ll freeze half of them the next time I make it.

Photo Credit: Adelaide of Ada Shot Me
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The Atonement

The Death of Jesus

The Death of Jesus by James Tissot


The Atonement of Jesus Christ, according to The Guide to the Scriptures, means “To reconcile man to God.” Also:

To atone is to suffer the penalty for an act of sin, thereby removing the effects of sin from the repentant sinner and allowing him to be reconciled to God. Jesus Christ was the only one capable of making a perfect atonement for all mankind … the only one able to do so. His atonement included his suffering for the sins of mankind in the Garden of Gethsemane, the shedding of his blood, and his death and subsequent resurrection from the grave.

Because of the Atonement, all people will rise from the dead with immortal bodies. The Atonement also provides the way for us to be forgiven of our sins and live forever with God. But a person who has reached the age of accountability and received the law can receive these blessings only if he has faith in Jesus Christ, repents of his sins, receives the ordinances of salvation, and obeys the commandments of God.

The scriptures clearly teach that if Christ had not atoned for our sins, no law, ordinance, or sacrifice would satisfy the demands of justice, and man could never regain God’s presence. (The Guide to the Scriptures, Atone, Atonement)

This week the atonement is the subject of the Gospel Doctrine class in Sunday School. I have been asked to substitute and an assignment like this can be quite intimidating. Not that the experience of teaching Gospel Doctrine is new to me, for I have often taught about the Old Testament. But still, it has been a while and I never have got used to teaching and keeping the attention of 100 members for 40 minutes.

When teaching, I stay on topic but like to vary how part of the lesson is presented. To that end, it would be helpful to read to the class a few thoughts from you, dear reader, if you are up to it.

Below are the images I will show at the beginning of class, as suggested by the lesson outline. Click on the links below to see images of Christ’s ministry. Look at the pictures and think about what Jesus Christ has done for you.

Sermon on the Mount
Christ Healing The Blind Man
Stilling the Storm
Jesus Blessing Jairus’s Daughter
Christ with the Children
Jesus Praying in Gethsemane
The Crucifixion

Notes

The Death of Jesus courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum.

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Ron Paul Oreo Cake

Ron Paul Oreo Cake

Ron Paul Oreo Cake


Since giving a copy of The Ron Paul Family Cookbook to Adelaide, she has made Original Chocolate Chip Cookies, Banana Nut Bread, Orange Rolls, and now Ron Paul Oreo Cake. If you have the cookbook, the recipe for Oreo Cake is found on page 1.

Adelaide says:

Ron Paul Oreo Cake ready to serveI made the Oreo Cake for the treat for Family Home Evening. I actually halved the recipe because I only had one container of Cool Whip, then I divided that in half to take over with dinner to a neighbor who just had a baby. So I ultimately made a quarter of the recipe for us. It was very tasty, reminding me of mud pie. It was a fun change from just plain pudding, and was the perfect size for our small family.

Photo Credit: Adelaide of Ada Shot Me
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