Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Friday, October 15, 2010

Grandma's Hands

Grandma, some ninety plus years,
sat feebly on the patio bench.
She didn't move,
just sat with her head down staring at her hands.

When I sat down beside her
she didn't acknowledge my presence
and the longer I sat I wondered if she was OK

not really wanting to disturb her
but wanting to check on her at the same time,
I asked her if she was OK.

She raised her head and looked at me and smiled.
"Yes, I'm fine, thank you for asking,"
she said in a clear voice strong.

"I didn't mean to disturb you, Grandma,
but you were just sitting here staring at your hands
and I wanted to make sure you were OK,"
I explained to her.

"Have you ever looked at your hands," she asked..
"I mean really looked at your hands?"

I slowly opened my hands and stared down at them. I turned them over, palms up and then palms down. No, I guess I had never really looked at my hands as I tried to figure out the point she was making.

smiled and related this story:

"Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they have served you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled shriveled and weak have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and grab and embrace life.

"They braced and caught my fall when as a toddler I crashed upon the floor.

They put food in my mouth and clothes on my back. As a child, my mother taught me to fold them in prayer. They tied my shoes and pulled on my boots. They held my husband and wiped my tears when he went off to war.

"They have been dirty, scraped and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. Decorated with my wedding band they showed the world that I was married and loved someone special.

They wrote my letters to him and trembled and shook when I buried my parents and spouse.

"They have held my children and grandchildren, consoled neighbors, and shook in fists of anger when I didn't understand.

They have covered my face, combed my hair, and washed and cleansed the rest of my body. They have been sticky and wet, bent and broken, dried and raw. And to this day when not much of anything else of me works real well these hands hold me up, lay me down, and again continue to fold in prayer.

"These hands are the mark of where I've been and the ruggedness of life. But more importantly it will be these hands that God will reach out and take when he leads me home. And with my hands He will lift me to His side and there I will use these hands to touch the face of Christ."

I will never look at my hands the same again. But I remember God reached out and took my Grandma's hands and led her home.

When my hands are hurt or sore or when I stroke the face of my children and husband I think of Grandma.
I know she has been stroked
and caressed
and held by the hands of God.

I, too, want to touch the face of God
and feel His hands upon my face.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

man-boy don't need instructions?

Me: J9, you doing okay in the shower.

J9: Yep.

Me: You almost done.

J9: Nope,
it took me like five minutes
just to figure out the shampoo* today.

[*new bottle of shampoo in the shower]


Me: Everything okay?

J9: Yep, just still have to wash my body.

Me: What happened?

"It took so long just to figure out the shampooing today
I read the back of the bottle
and it said:

Wet hair.
Wash thoroughly.
Rinse thoroughly .

I decided not to use that one.
I didn't want to mess it up.

Too many directions."

I am trying to decide
if he could have
just fine with that
if he had not
read the

He is of the guy gender after all!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

God's Cake

Sometimes we wonder,
'What did I do to deserve this?'
'Why did God have to do this to me?'
Here is a wonderful explanation!
A daughter is telling her Mother how everything is going wrong, she's failing algebra, her boyfriend broke up with her and her best friend is moving away.
Meanwhile, her Mother is baking a cake and asks her daughter if she would like a snack, and the daughter says, 'Absolutely Mom, I love your cake.'
'Here, have some cooking oil,' her Mother offers.
'Yuck' says her daughter.
'How about a couple raw eggs?'
'Gross, Mom!'
'Would you like some flour then? Or maybe baking soda?'
'Mom, those are all yucky!'
To which the mother replies:
'Yes , all those things seem bad all by themselves.
But when they are put together in the right way,
they make a wonderfully delicious cake!
God works the same way.
Many times we wonder why
He would let us go through such bad and difficult times.
But God knows that when
He puts these things all in His order,
they always work for good!
We just have to trust Him
and eventually,
they will all make something wonderful!
God is crazy about you.
He sends you flowers every spring
and a sunrise every morning.
Whenever you want to talk, He'll listen.
He can live anywhere in the universe,
and He chose your heart.

Monday, May 17, 2010

i am NOT a morning person

i am not a morning person*.

*unless i am fishing
or have a camera
a perfectly painted sky

first to admit that i am a lousy cranky mess most mornings.

even the word morning...sounds like mourning....therefore it is grief to me. i have to wake up on my own, or at least be allowed to believe that i woke up on my own, even if such waking was nudged a little by someone poking me until i began to stir. at that point....let me be to stretch, yawn, and awaken. then i am bliss. i don't mind the sun shining in.

[heaven forbid i wake up to darkness,
that might warrant
wearing a caution sign
around my neck!]

this morning Mr. B cheerfully brings me prune juice. 6:30 am and he feels it necessary to be the bearer of bad fruit.

Seriously. so i am up.

...and i react. i make the bed, angerly.

i head into the bathroom and brush my teeth....which mistake i will pay for later....drinking prune juice is bad enough, drinking it with morning breath is better than a fresh palate expecting something delectable.

prune juice is NOT delectable.

and so I am grumpy,

and i have spent the morning pouting and reacting.
choosing an attitude
my own misery.

could i have just thanked him?

could i have just fallen back to slumber after smiling peacefully up at my best friend and BEST advocate for my health?

i mean really,
he was just doing what he feels is
best for my healing and my health.

he loves me....loves me not is NOT an option. now I regret.

i got up.

i asked him in about 12 different ways why he was so bent on me being awake.

did he need something?
did he just want me to stay in the habit of waking early?

was he upset that i was still lounging while he was making the lunches?

is my healing taking to long....?

finally he just looked at me,
took the glass of prune juice and drank it himself.

he wasn't trying to torture me.
he was just trying to be nice.

to make sure i had something beside my bed
when i woke up
something healthy
because he loves me
and for some weird reason
he wants to wake up next to me
for many many more mornings

mornings.....i may hate them....
but i hate WORSE
the thought of him waking up without me,
or me without him.

and so i poured myself another glass of prune juice,
drank it
and hugged him,
before heading back to bed.

GOOD morning????
yep, i suppose it was.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

sUndAy smilEs

Me: Hey Cece, have you been practicing your piano?
Cece: Yep, everyday,

on my ipod touch!

Me: ummmm....seriously???

Cece: Yeah,
I downloaded an app for that!

Wanna hear...?
seems there are new ways of doing
everything these days...
i wish i had an app for laundry....

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Hospital Humor starring Mr. B

Me: Could you take one more???[copies of my hospital handcuff,
for lab stickers,
they took SIX,
an EVEN number,
i just wanted the lab tech
to make it SEVEN for LUCK!!!]

Lab tech: seriously???

Mr. B: Oh, she is serious.
LT: okay???

Mr. B to Lt: [aka small talk giant]
You married?

LT: yeah

mR. b: good luck with that.
we are going on near 20 years...

Me: ...of BLISS!

Mr. B: [choking] yeah,

When we were getting married,
I called Stacie to tell her our Phone Number,

So excited, days from our wedding...
I tell her: 582-4119

and SHE on the other line says:
"Can you get it changed???

I prefer odd numbers,
one with more
3's and 7's?"
the silence spoke chapters.

She was serious.

The phone lady
asked me if I was already married to THIS girl.
I had time to back out, she warned.

I married her anyway and it has been
well.....we are still married!

Dont worry,
I always get the LAST LAUGH!

While I was in the operating room
Mr. B sat patiently in the waiting room.
He is always good for a laugh,
no matter the circumstances.
I am pretty sure he was the only one
laughing at this one however.

Lullabies playing....babies being born,
people quietly and somberly waiting
for their loved ones to come out of surgery.
An older woman looks up,
hearing the lullaby she asks Mr. B:
Why do they keep playing that lullaby?
Mr. B responds:
They play that every time
a baby is born.
Haven't you heard,
they play
Another One Bites the Dust
when they lose one too!
That was the end of ANY
waiting room conversation for Mr. B.
[poor woman, looked down with disgust.]

He's a Keeper!

Last Laugh!
On the day to check out the Doctor
came in and said,
"well, i have never seen this before!"
He continued, "I have never seen
a patient
write 'for now' after
their spouses declaration of

Well, I like to keep my options open!
He was bugging me in pre-op,
I figured we would see how recovery went!!!
Dr.: And????
I think I will KEEP him.
He's a KEEPER!
Love you Mr. B!

Friday, May 14, 2010

are YOU on my BLOGROLL???

I am updating my blog roll
and would love to add you

if you are reading
and don't see yourself on mine!!!

Let me know!

I will stop by sometime! Thanks!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

she cries

new journal; usually i enjoy the beginning of a new journal; the potential, the fresh, new beginning.
today, however, is different. everything is changed now.
as i wrote in a new book today the process was poignant, bittersweet. this is a new book/chapter, for me and my family, in our lives.

i am recovering from having a hysterectomy.
[there, i said it].
wednesday was the day, 5/5/10. 11:11 AM was the time when they came to tell me it was time.
and i began to weep.
i had been so strong going into this; so brave.
in an instant, a moment, everything about that changed. my brave face wore off and i had to discover if i really had courage.
as they wheeled me back, i knew that nothing would soothe the empty ache i was about to face.
i really had done all i could to be prepared for this; prayers, blessings, coming to terms with facts, and acceptence. acceptence in body, mind, and spirit.
i forgot raw emotion.
i was okay until the charge nurse came in to go over everything, the papers, the details. i had asked questions,signed papers, put on the hospital handcuff in a statement that i would stay. i agreed with everything that was asked of me, i felt calm and peaceful
the blow that came next knocked the wind out of me and i have yet to catch my breath.
the nurse handed me one final paper. 'this one' she states 'clarifies that you of your own free will are choosing sterilization.'
i must have looked confused, i didn't take the paper from her like i had the others. she saw my
hesitation and further explained, 'it states that you are here by your own account and opting to have a surgery that will leave you unable to bare children.'
i said to her, 'are you serious?'
she put the paper on a clipboard in my lap.
i looked at B. this was a cruel joke.
'what?' i asked.
she simply said, 'in order to have the surgery you need to sign it stating you understand it is elective surgery. it is your choice.'
at this point tears are welling up in my eyes.
i don't get it.
all this time i have been advised to have the surgery, it is not something i picked.
the policy, she continues to explain, is that a woman has the choice no matter her condition and that signing the form makes it clear that i understand i will no longer be able to concieve and carry a child.
inside i feel like i am writhing, i try to look at B through my tears, i can not bring myself to put my signiture, my name, on that piece of paper.
'WHY', i ask her, i don't get why i have to sign it.
i didn't choose this, to suffer pains and growths and other symptoms that make daily life difficult at best. this surgery is to alleviate all that. to make my quality of life, of motherhood, better.
it is not optional, or elective. i came willingly, isn't that enough.
i can't bring myself to sign it. suddenly all the courage i had is used up and i feel completely out of control in pain, agony, confusion.
simply the hospital requires a patient to acknowledge awareness of the choice and the understanding that it would make me sterile. such horrible words, and thoughts, zapping the strength i had stored to endure this peaceably.
NO, my head and heart were screaming, children, unborn, those hoped for, prayed for, pleaded and ached for that place within me. oh, the sorrow that i was feeling.
'Do i really have to sign it?' i hear myself ask her.
suddenly i feel the finality of the decision become mine. B says, "no, you dont, we can leave", he sits nearer to me, and i feel myself signing, without even looking. as if in denial. it is done.
a weeping begins, which weeping of heart will never cease.
it becomes blurry to me, suddenly i am no longer crying in b's arms,but weeping on the gurney.
i found interesting metaphore that they put me into a bed, carefully lifting the sides, tucking me in, a warm blanket, under the covers so soothing, brians hand on my head, i feel like an infant in a crib, like the babies i will not have, the bed becomes a womb for me, my only piece of physical security left in that moment, all other stripped away from me as we walk away from the waiting room where B was left behind.
one kiss, one caress of my forehead, a look of love, concern and sorrow as our eyes met, the last time we are together while i am whole.
the further we go the more it feels like a suicide to my motherhood, i can't get it out of my mind that i chose this. the confusion, my heart wont hear what my head can't make sense of.
i weep harder the closer we get the more sterile the environment.
sterile, like i will be.
people are walking like robots. going through the motions. i become a number, a room number, a patient number. no longer a being, heart and soul. i look like everyone else, in my cap and gown, yet so different, i am still weeping.
the orderly parks me in patient parking. it is quiet. it strikes me that now i really am a stranger in a territory whose customs are unfamiliar to me. their ways don't align with mine today.
then i don't feel with me anymore.
people are asking this poor weeping woman if she is okay, i feel so seperated from who i am. and then i hear it, the lullaby; a sound i will dread hearing over the next few days. each time a new baby is born in the hospital they will play it.
now people are asking me if i am sure i want this surgery. did i sign the paper?
'this paper' they say as they show it to me. i see my signature. i do not respond right away.
a woman asks, 'are you sure you don't want any more children?'
all the wrong questions. she explains if i am feeling apprehensive maybe i should reconsider, it can not be reversed.
i feel so helpless, i know they don't mean harm but i feel like they are bullies on the playground. they have found my weakness and keep taunting me.
i could be ninety,would they ask me the same things. i know i can't have more children, it has been 9 long years of wishing, of praying, of hoping....that somehow it would just happen because that was God's will for me. i know it is not, i know that nothing would change if i said no today, we still would not have more children. i recognize my blessings, all four of them. i want to live for them, for me. not just alive, but LIVE with quality and patience, healthy and pain free.
i look at the anesthesiologist and beg him. 'i am ready, please just get me to sleep.' i don't want to feel what i am feeling anymore, please. from the darkness of this moment will come light, i need it to move forward.
i wake up, sort of. i hear someone crying, wailing really. people are trying to soothe her. she is inconsolable. she is writhing in pain, truly wailing. oh, how i want to comfort her. to tell her it will all be okay. she sounds so desperate, if loss were a sound she is making it. the crying is so disturbing and it is hard for me to relax. i hear people saying that she needs to be taken to a room. i think no, bring her to me. i will hold her. and then i see brian, and he is telling her it will all be okay...then i realize the sounds of anquish are coming from me. from my emptyness, a pit of despair.
there goes that song again, why do they have to keep playing it. i continue to cry, calming each time to be reawakened in grief by a lullaby.
i find comfort in Mr B's voice, his hand, the look of desperation on his face for me to be okay. i find peace in his patience. allowing me to feel the grief, and caring about where it came from. i am made whole because he loves me...even when pieces of me are missing, even when i am broken. even when i lack courage, lose a brave face, always when i cry, when i cry at night.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tell it Thursday!

J upon discovering this
in Mr. B's cache of stuff
from his childhood!

"Mom, is this what cell phones were
like in the Olden Days???"

Try to put THAT in your pocket! LOL

Friday, April 30, 2010

whaT HE sAid!





You say: 'It's impossible'

God says: All things are possible

( Luke 18:27)

You say: 'I'm too tired'

God says: I will give you rest

( Matthew 11:28-30)

You say: 'Nobody really loves me'

God says: I love you

( John 3:1 6 & John 3:34 )

You say: 'I can't go on'

God says: My grace is sufficient

(II Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)

You say: 'I can't figure things out'

God says: I will direct your steps

(Proverbs 3:5- 6)

You say: 'I can't do it'

God says: You can do all things

( Philippians 4:13)

You say: 'I'm not able'

God says: I am able

(II Corinthians 9:8)

You say:'It's not worth it'

God says: It will be worth it

(Roman 8:28 )

You say: 'I can't forgive myself'

God says: I Forgive you

(I John 1:9 & Romans 8:1)

You say: 'I can't manage'

God says: I will supply all your needs

( Philippians 4:19)

You say: 'I'm afraid'

God says: I have not given you a spirit of fear

( II Timothy 1:7)

You say: 'I'm always worried and frustrated'

God says: Cast all your cares on ME

(I Peter 5:7)

You say: 'I'm not smart enough'

God says: I give you wisdom

(I Corinthians 1:30)

You say: 'I feel all alone'

God says: I will never leave you or forsake you

(Hebrews 13:5)

Friday, March 19, 2010

order of BE YOURSELF to go, please!

I was sitting at a stoplight, minding my own business, finishing up a Snickers bar for breakfast, and on my way home from taking the kids to school this morning when suddenly the car next to me began to go. Of course all my instincts were to follow, LUNGE and move forward with the car next to me.
I was so busy in my Snickers Bar that I failed to look for myself.

After an abrupt stop partially into the intersection I looked behind me and to both my sides.
The car behind me had followed me....and
seeing my MISTAKE
he was snickering with the car next to him....

"look at THAT driver", I imagined him thinking.
Probably on the phone...painting her nails,
putting on mascara, eating a SNICKERS!!!!

I was sure that he was just picking me apart for my mistake.
In that moment the whole world could see me
in my underwear as far as I was concerned.

Thankful that it wasn't a worse scenario I decided to suck it up and just let him laugh....likely he wasn't thinking any of the things that I was thinking about myself.
I am so good at that.
...thinking the worst of myself,
and thinking that others
are thinking the worst of me well.

It is common for me to see what others are doing and think,
"okay, so that is what I SHOULD be doing, right?"

Then typically I remember that I have never done what I think others think I should be doing, and I really have generally cared less if others think I am right or I am wrong.
I live by the live and let live motto.
I know that 90% cases I would be absolutely miserable to force myself to be LIKE that person, or to have their LIFE.

I enjoy mine, I am satisfied with being ME,
and I make my decisions from the gut.
Generally and most often I am very content with the decisions I make,
they don't always turn out for the best,
but they are my decisions...
thus, happiness,
thus, peace,
thus, continue moving forward...

And that goes well for today's thought.
Today I had an epiphany.
Another epiphany,
a new realization....a very physical one.

Had I moved completely forward further into the intersection the outcome of my mistake in following the person next to me would have and could have been tragic. It was a BUSY BUSY intersection. People are scurrying to work and to school, and I would have been IN THEIR WAY.

The outcome would have been: Mother of four, seriously maimed this morning while eating a snickers bar. She chose to follow the person next to her and it wasn't her path, wasn't her right of way, and she is suffering devastating consequences, consequences that now effect those lovely children she had just delivered to school.

Had I followed the person next to me I would have had to turn RIGHT. That person was headed in a DIFFERENT direction then I needed to go. The right direction for them but NOT the RIGHT direction for ME. Their path did not lead to my home.

My Home Sweet Home.

Where I WANT to BE!

I am just thinking....but what I am thinking is this is bigger than just looking for yourself and choosing for yourself when you are driving.

This is looking for the right things in your life, not your neighbors, not your best friend, your sister, your brother, your mom/dad/grandpa...

This is choosing for yourself after seeing all the choices and knowing in your gut that what you are choosing is right for you.

Today, I want a

I don't want to lose my life
trying to live someone elses ways.

I want to have
good ideas
and direction,
and momentum,
and GUT instincts
that what I choose for myself is okay FOR ME!!!

I want my own satisfaction...
not someone else's!

I don't want to be in a four alarm disaster ...
i don't want to BE A

a consequence of thinking it was time to go
and right for me
because the person next to me did.

I want to be me.

Live and LET Live,
and cEleBrATe our differences.

If God wanted one personality he would have stopped with Adam. Obviously he had a better idea...and created EVE!
And the up to [me] and you!

Yes...being ME Satisfies!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

it's BOX ELDER BUG season!!!

J arrived home from school
before the rest of the children today.

a bit of mommy alone time on the agenda

The weather is perfect and so we
hung outside a bit...

kids are so amazing
they always notice the
LITTLE big THINGS in life!

Like the Crocus in bloom!
Happy early Spring Day!

[i would have to say this is MUCH more
exciting than MARCH MADNESS!]

..."and the Bumble Bees are back to make us some honey!"

i am hanging on to his youth,
so i don't lose mine!

TeLL mE ThuRsDAy about WoRdLEsS WeDnEsDaY

wordLESS wednesDAY!!!

At my sisters house for Sunday Family Dinner

Seriously Unfortunate Question

Mr. B: When did they start making
Pregnancy Tests?

and SILENCE! fell upon the room.

The End!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

wordLESS wednesDAY!!!

wAy-bAck whEnDsdAy - happy birthdy LUCKY Lucy!

See her Lucky Clover neckercheif ☺

We got our kitty
Lew Lew
about 7 ish...years ago.

I wanted another baby,
instead Mr. B got me a kitty!

We adopted her around St. Patrick's Day
and have since celebrated her
Birthday on St. Paddys Day!

She is a bit spoiled,

[will only drink fresh water
from the faucet...]

and purely sweet.

For her Birthday celebration
she gets a bowl of milk
with Temptation treats!


That's about as GOOD as it gets!

top 'o th' morning...Happy St. Patricks Day!!!

Silly Leprechaun...
leaving such a MESS!

kiss me...i'm irish!

Monday, March 15, 2010

There ARE trick questions!

there are trick questions
...including the ones your kids ask you after school.

J--almost 9: does soap have wine alcohol in it?

Me: no, it has rubbing alcohol ...sometimes

J: is it the same that you can get drunk from?

Me: no, it is not

J: is it poisonous?

Me: yes, and you should never drink rubbing alcohol

J: so you could die from it?

Me: I suppose.

J: Mom, remember when you use to put soap in our mouths.

Me: ummmmm...Jeremy, you know I wasn't trying to kill you.

J---ALMOST 9: sure Mom

[at least he doesn't know enough to turn me in to DCFS yet,
...or does he?]

If you can't say something nice...

[...and other lessons learned!]


DISCLAIMER: generally writer is not affected by DST*,...
[hence attitude]

*which truth causes reaction to be an
intensely bitter and harsher diatribe than
to be expected from thus writer.
please read at own risk.
i wrote it that way...

PS: I am officially IN TIME OUT for the day...I have gone to my room under direct orders from the head of the house: ME.
And I will stay there
until I can change my attitude
and filter my commentary.
This could take a while.

blessings everyone ♥



and other lessons learned.

This morning I am not sure I have a nice thought in my thunder. I CANNOT believe it is almost noon and I am sitting in my holiest pants...

Mr B to me about 4 hours ago:
You realize you have
holes in your jeans?

Of course I only answered him
with: 'the look'.

Yes, I have holes in my jeans, and I am rebelling against the morning hours by wearing them. If you want me up, take me as I am. I have business under the covers to attend to otherwise.

Sleep is still calling my name today.

Daylight Savings Time.
I am sure it was a grand idea, but if the farmers want to get up an hour earlier, or go to bed an hour later, or work longer...why can't they do that without involving a CLOCK!
[truth: i am so confused at this point
I don't know

When the sun is up, the sun is UP!
Does it really need to be anymore complicated than that?

[No farmers have been harmed here,
all farmers have been taking a bad rap for this
long enough,
they are tough skinned,
and I am certain they can handle it.

PS: I come from a long line of farmers
so I do feel I can speak for the breed.]

I suppose I could sound like a picky complicated ranting maniac today...but WOW. What a MOURNING!!!!
[PUN totally intended.]


A beloved hour.
An hour that had
so much potential
that I am certain nothing
in this world can fulfill it.

At first I went into this years DST with an attitude that needed some major adjustment.

Couldn't afford the adjustment,
so I am just left with the attitude.

I know that when you expect trouble, you beckon it.
I suppose that is why I am still stuck with the attitude.

It started out all in fun:

until they change the time back!!!

Sounds simple and harmless!!!

Like everything simple
and harmless


and in the form of my
further heightened
BAD attitude

My comments are caustic and poisonous and surely not G-rated!
I feel like I went to bed last night and woke up this morning violated....An hour was STOLEN from me during the night....was it last night...the night before...I am so tired I can't even figure that out for sure.

I have a solution for DST:

If we have to lose an hour
why can't it be on MONDAY
during the middle of the WORK DAY!!!!

This morning as I was mourning my loss, OUR loss....I cracked open a can of DP to my husbands comment...."BREAKFAST IS SERVED! "

after the pants comment
his head was about to be served

Served a dish of
get the kids up
and fed
and off to school
by yourself today!!!
I am going back to bed.

I suppose that I have gotten to my point:

"If you can't say something nice about the weather!"

So....How is the weather???

I said what I meant when I meant what I said. I am rebelling!

on marriage

'Will you, um, marry me?' I haven't seen you in weeks! You don't look happy or excited about the prospect of our marriage! You're asking me to give up my - my freedom, my joie de vivre for an institution that fails as often as it succeeds? And why should I marry you anyway? I mean, why do you wanna marry me? Besides some bourgeois desire to fulfill an ideal that society embeds in us from an early age to promote a consumer capitalist agenda?