Drink Water And Like It!

Would you  believe that in the future you will be asked to restrict your consumption of canned beverag

Reducing the consumption of soda and other sugary drinks will be the focus of a new campaign to reduce diet-related disease announced today by health departments in several major cities as well as the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, and other groups.

The campaign, Life’s Sweeter with Fewer Sugary Drinks, will seek to decrease average consumption of sugary drinks to roughly 3 cans per person per week by 2020. Health officials in Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, San Antonio, and Seattle say that reducing soda consumption is one of their top strategies for reducing rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other health problems. All of those cities, plus 110 local and national health organizations, have embraced the Life’s Sweeter campaign.

es with sweeteners to THREE CANS A WEEK.

When I read that I almost died.  I know sodas are bad for me.  I try regularly to delete them entirely from my diet but I can’t imagine only drinking 3 cans a week.  I wonder how many other people are ready to make that kind of change?

Here is a little bit about a program called Make Life Sweeter.



Suspicious Parcel Sends OJR Kids Home

Everything is fine.  The package was just old homework and assorted papers that a former student left behind and a new student removed from their locker.  Pheww!

Earlier when we had no idea of the seriousness  I wrote this….I made a couple of “dirty  guesses’  and in hindsight it’s a little silly.  Should we ease up a bit?  Or should we maintain our vigor in protecting children?  What do you think?


What a world.  Today the high school students at OJR were sent home after a one hour administrative lockdown because a suspicious parcel was found in the gym locker area.

My kids said that the person who planted the suspicious device might have known that Wednesday’s don’t have scheduled gym classes.  Which means that unless someone was in there to do a makeup class which isn’t likely since this is the first days of school, or elective which would make it a smaller group of kids

My girls also mentioned that yesterday at an assembly they were each told different things.  My freshman was  told that there are over a hundred cameras in the school.  14 in the lunchroom so they can tell if the kids make messes and none in the lockers or the bathrooms for obvious reasons.    That was the spiel for the younger grades,

For the juniors and seniors they reminded the students that stealing happened but that it was more hassle than it’s worth because the students at OJR were above it and they mentioned that they shouldn’t bring valuables to school, but if they had them they were to keep them in the main locker or give them to the gym teacher because there weren’t cameras in the locker rooms and they couldn’t prevent thefts as easily. So the older kids got told that there weren’t cameras in the locker areas but it wasn’t as specific.

So someone knew about no cameras in the locker area and no gym classes to worry about. Or they just had a lot of dumb luck.

I’m frustrated that someone would either do something with the intent to harm kids, or that someone would threaten kids even with a “joke” package.

Thanks to Dr. Soeder for handling this awful situation professionally and I’m glad that the teachers and staff at OJR were supportive and considerate of the student’s feelings because the kids had to hear ” This is NOT a drill, there is a potentially dangerous situation that we have under control, this is an administrative lockdown.”

I hope everything gets figured out and I hope that we hear more.




Kids are Heading Back to School!

Everyone keep your eyes open and  abide by the law when it comes to crosswalks and school zones and make sure you keep your eyes open for school buses!

Give yourself a little more time and please remind yourself that the children in our neighborhoods are precious and we need to look out for them in order to keep them safe!

Happy Back to School!





Hoarding for the Apocalypse!

TLC had some crazy shows on last night.  I tuned in to watch “living for the Apocalypse” which was a show about some folks who have devoted their lives to preparing for the end of times.  Some of the families seemed perfectly normal at first glance and then we got invited through the magic of television into their homes where things weren’t exactly “normal”.

Now I’m not going to try to tell anyone that being normal is all it’s cracked up to be.  I admired some of the skills that those worry warts were adopting.  I think it’s smart to be prepared for emergencies- but I do worry about their cult like devotion to the idea that they can somehow stand alone if the world ends in a disaster.  Preparation is good.  Worrying about zombies?  Not so good.

The first family that the show featured was the Layton family from Utah.  Mrs. Peggy Layton seemed like a lovely lady who has a lot of energy and a lot of talent.  She grew up in a community that teaches that people should prepare and the impetus for that preparation is biblical.  It is there that you’ll find advice to prepare yourself as if against a thief in the night.  Or prepare as bridesmaids should by keeping the wick of your lamps trimmed in order to guide a married couple.  Preparation then  is part celebration and part protection based.  But when you see that they have several underground bunkers built into their home and Peggy’s work space and they also have a bug out place in the mountains where they’ll be able to look down on the rest of the world with their weapons and food- well, it’s a little creepy.

Peggy said the difference between hoarding and preparing is organization!

Are you prepared?  Have you really thought about what you and your family needs if there are problems with the weather?  Or problems with the economy? Or problems with food distribution or production networks?  Or God forbid, problems due to man-made disasters?

These people sound a little crazy but maybe they are just exaggerated examples of forward thinkers?!








Flooding Still A Worry!

Remember folks that when a storm as big as Irene moves through the area we are going to have potential for flooding after the storm passes.  All the creeks, streams and tributaries are going to be full and all of that water is headed to the ocean which seems incredible but that is all part of the water cycle.  Our water moves into the Delaware or Chesapeake and into the ocean!

So keep an eye out for local flooding today!  Don’t fool around with flooded areas.  Stay out of them!

Be safe.




Aram Ecker Can Be Bought! :)

I have my own opinion on fluoride in water.  Well, heck my opinion is we don’t need it added.  Now I know it protects teeth from cavities but my concern is that it does it by “protecting the enamel” and that protection isn’t always surefire.  As a matter of fact some children develop something that pits their teeth and my concern is that if it is pitting teeth and causing spotting on the enamel there is there any other problems with the rest of the body?  Since there aren’t any easy answers to that question I’m going to stand on the side of caution.

But this post isn’t about what I think about fluoride in local water supplies this is about what Pottstown is doing with local water.  I liked what Ron Downie said when he said the concerns aren’t new.  Pottstown is not ahead of the trend, but following it.

I also thought it was kind of funny that Aram Ecker said he was willing to be bought.  In otherwords he’d give up his insistence that Pottstown keep fluoridating water if not adding fluoride meant that other towns would find Pottstown’s water more palatable.  That might make them more willing to buy it!

Here is an excerpt from Philly.com-

Pottstown’s decision offers yet another explanation for fluoridation’s waning popularity here – money.

The move will save the authority about $40,000 a year, a drop in the bucket compared with the agency’s $5 million operating budget. But there is real money to be made in water sales.

For years, the authority ran Montgomery County’s only fluoridated water system. Downie hopes the change will allow it to begin selling its four-million-gallon daily surplus to neighboring suppliers who do not use fluoride.

It’s an argument that even Aram Ecker, a Pottstown plumber and the lone authority member to vote for continued fluoridation, can get behind.

Ecker argued vehemently with his fellow authority members, offering his own children as examples of fluoride’s benefits. “It’s ridiculous the silver that’s in my mouth,” he said. “I have seven kids. They’ve all got perfect teeth as far as cavities. I know it’s because of the little bit of fluoride in my water.”

Weeks later, he still believes residents will lose a tremendous health benefit. But if outside sales mean lower water bills, he said, he is willing to get his fluoride elsewhere.

“If it means we can lower rates,” he said, “you’re damn right I can be bought.”






The Sicilian Pizza Special That Wasn’t!

I’ve talked about a place on 422 that I recommended called Island Pizza.  I never talk about the fact that I have a blog when I go out so when I recommend a place it’s straight from the heart.  I get no perks for mentioning my having gone there, and I don’t expect any special treatment.  However, when I highlight a place and then go back and get lousy service I have a tendency to want to complain a little.

This isn’t a poison pen complaint.  Don’t get excited.  This is just a real event that just happened to me and I feel a little miffed.  Why don’t I just spit it out huh?

This  is the last day before school starts. It was also the end of a hurricane.  My husband offered to take the family out for a pizza to celebrate.  Sounds great right?

I said,” hey I like Island Pizza, let’s go there”.  We all got into the car and we got there and we were told that their special for Sunday was a Sicilian pizza for only 11.99.  That sounded wonderful so we ordered it but my girls wanted spaghetti- one chose the veal parmesan and the other chicken parmesan.  The girls also  got salads with their meals and we all ordered drinks.

Less than 10 minutes later the girls salads came out.  Then about  5 minutes later their meals came.  Remember the Sicilian pizza  was their specialty for Sundays.  But we waited…and waited…and waited.  I mentioned to the waitress that I wasn’t thrilled that the girls meals were almost done before we got any sign of a pizza.  She said it would only be a few more minutes.

We waited another ten minutes.  Finally my girls were almost done and I was done too.  I said you know what?  This is ridiculous.  So my husband said he agreed and he said he’d go pay for what we already got.

He went up to pay for it and I saw one of the pizza guys giving him crap.  He was telling him that Sicilian pizzas take 35 minutes, and we had to wait  because the bread has to rise.

I couldn’t believe they were giving us trouble.  We were there for an hour! Remember I mentioned going out to eat at Union Jack’s the other night we were there for an hour and a half total!  They weren’t rushing us but in that time  we had a full meal.

While I don’t want to pretend I know how long a pizza should take, I think the real problem with our visit to Island Pizza was lack of service.  If someone had taken the time to tell us how long it would take, or had asked if we wanted the girls meals before the pizza, or even if we wanted parmesan with the “chicken and veal  parmesan”  then I might not have felt so bummed out.

Maybe the problem was simply due to the storm, like maybe they didn’t have a lot of staff because of the storm.  Maybe they have a new system that everyone working there isn’t up to snuff on.  Maybe they forgot to put our pizza in the oven and they didn’t realize that it’s a lot more customer friendly to admit you forgot to bake a pizza than to pretend that your customers don’t understand the concept of pizza baking!

That is it!  That is my big complaint.  It’s a pizza complaint.  Tough life I’ve got huh?  I’ll probably get over it quick.  Plus the chicken and veal dinners were delicious.  I’m just not going to hurry back there to grab their specials any time soon.

I’m going to have to sign off as an unhappy sicilian pizza lover,





Pottstown’s Amazing Cleanup After Irene

There was evidence of brush all over and lots of puddles around town but it was nice to see that people were out right away cleaning up the mess that mother nature made this weekend with Hurricane Irene.

Overall I think we dodged a bullet!

I know that some people may have some flooding to deal with and I don’t mean to minimize their grief because I know all too well that a flood is a terrible thing!  But overall I think we did okay this time and I’m certainly relieved.

I’d like to say thanks to all the road crew folks in all of our local towns.  I saw lots of people out there both during the storm and prior to the storm working on making sure things like storm drains were cleared and barriers were stowed so that they could be brought out if neccessary.

Let’s hope we don’t have to worry about any more hurricanes this season.

If anyone has anything they want to share, please feel free to comment we’ll post it here!