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Monday, October 26, 2009

How to Stop Bullying Others in 4 Simple Steps

By Raz Chan

Most of the articles that you read in regards to bullying deal with how to stop a bully from victimizing you. However, there is a need for those which deal with teaching an individual how to stop bullying others. If you have made the decision to turn away from a life of bullying others, then the information within this article can help you do just that. The four simple steps below can help you turn away from a life of violence and make up for the things that you have done in your past.

1. Let Others Know You Are Done

The first thing that you must do if you want to stop bullying is to let others around you know that you are done harming others. Chances are that if you have been a bully for any length of time, others around you know you by your reputation for being mean. In order to move forward with a new way of life, it is important to ensure that everyone around you knows of your new intentions. Often your actions can speak louder than words. Try doing something nice for others, and people will begin to see the truth.

2. Find a New Set of Friends

It is a pretty safe bet that once you turn away from your previous actions and stop bullying, your so called friends will begin to drift away. These same friends may even turn on you and begin bullying you in return. Even if your friends stick by your side, it may be best to look for a new set of friends who do not have violence and humiliation in mind. By associating with those who are kind and peaceful in nature, you ensure that you are not tempted to turn back to your old ways.

3. Earn Respect Don't Command It

Now that you have stopped bullying others, you have lost your way of making others respect you. You will find that in order to get respect now, you will have to earn it. This is done by doing things that command respect through actions, kind words, or accomplishments; you can quickly regain the respect that you lost when you stopped bullying it out of others. It may even surprise you that respect that is earned is much more rewarding than that which is forced.

4. Make Amends

One of the hardest things you will have to do when you decide to stop bullying others is to make amends for all of the mean things that you have done. If you were a bully for any length of time, you probably hurt a lot of people in a variety of different ways. To truly turn over a new leaf and start over, you must ask forgiveness from these individuals, and try to make up for the pain that you caused.

If you have decided that you want to stop bullying and become a better person, there are several steps that will need to be taken. The four steps above can set you on the right path to making amends for your past and moving towards a new and peaceful life.

Raz Chan is a professional martial arts instructor specializing in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, civilian self-defense, and women's cardio kickboxing, . To find out more tips on how to stop bullying you can follow his blog at: How To Stop Bullying Today For a limited time you can get a FREE copy of his report "Stop Bullying & Build Child Confidence: Perspectives of a Bullying Victim" by visiting Stop Bullying Report

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Japanese Writing System

Of the writing systems in use in the world today, the Japanese writing
system is among the most complex. It consists of Chinese characters as well
as two phonetic alphabets. This is how the system evolved and works.

At its core, Japanese uses Chinese characters called kanji in Japanese.
Because of this, it is a common misconception that the Japanese and Chinese
languages are closely related. In fact, they are quite different and not
even of the same language family. However, Chinese had an influence on
Japanese somewhat like the influence Latin and French had on English.

The first writing in Japan was in Chinese since Japanese did not have a
written form when Chinese characters were first introduced to Japan.
Gradually though, different steps were taken to create a Japanese writing
system built upon the Chinese model.

In many cases, both the Chinese characters and words were introduced into
Japanese. These kanji were read with a Japanese approximation of the Chinese
sounds called the on-yomi or on-reading.

Other kanji were assigned to Japanese words so they had purely Japanese
readings. These kanji, and those kanji invented in Japan, are read with what
is called the kun-yomi or kun-reading.

Unfortunately for those studying Japanese, many kanji have both types of
readings and more than one of each. All together, roughly 2000 kanji
characters are in use in Japanese today.

In addition, two syllable based writing systems, each containing 46 basic
syllable characters, were also developed. These are called hiragana and

Hiragana is used to write native Japanese words that have not been assigned
kanji, particles, auxiliary verbs as well as inflected parts of nouns,
verbs, and adjectives.

The other, katakana, is used to write foreign-derived words and names that
do not come from Chinese (these are usually written in kanji). It is also
used to bring attention to certain words such as in advertising.

While it is possible to write Japanese entirely in hiragana, katakana or
even the Latin alphabet, tradition and culture keep written Japanese the
more complex system it has evolved into.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Baby High Chair Buying Guide

By Theodore Satou

Once your little one starts to sit up, you may consider to choose on what
type of high chair you would like to have. You can wait until the baby
starts eating solid foods, around eight months. The high chair is a place to
park baby when he enjoy his meals. A comfortable chair seems like a simple
piece of equipment, but the options could be confusing. Today, they come in
a variety of different designs, materials, and colors. Tips below can help
you to learn about what to look for when buying one for your baby.

The high chairs usually come with two removable trays, which each has a cup
holder. The convertible high chairs can be used as baby chair and toddler
seat. They usually cost more, but their features presents a great value to
the parents. For those who live in limited spaces, the folding chair
provides compact storage, and saves on storage space. The adjustable chair
ensures maximum comfort as the baby grows and gets bigger. Currently many
providers selling adjustable chairs that can be converted to toddler booster
chairs, and then convert to youth seats.

Another practical tip is to buy a reclining high chair if the baby falls
asleep after meal times. Some high chair can be converted as booster seats,
which can be set on your dining room chair. Some high chair could be
fastened onto the table.

There are a wide variety of both wood and plastic convertible high chairs.
Currently plastic high chairs are available in the same style as wooden high
chairs. Wooden high chairs are heavier than plastic models, and they blend
well with a home interior. The wooden high chairs require a bit more effort
to clean. When you are deciding to buy wooden high chair, consider to add
pads to make sitting more comfortably and versatile. You could then buy
cushions with your favorite pattern and color.

Always keep the safety tips on this guide in mind. It should have a waist
strap and a strap that runs between the legs. If it does not have adequate
safety straps, contact the manufacturer soon for replacement. Buckle the
baby into his chair using both the waist strap, and the strap that runs
between his legs. For a folding chair, make sure the locking device is
locked each time you set it up. The locking mechanism on a chair that folds
must be locked in place before you place your baby inside. The high chair
should have a post between his legs to prevent him from slipping down and
becoming trapped under the tray. If you currently have an old model or if
you receive the chair as a gift, make sure it is safe for your baby.

Keep an eye on your baby while she is in the high chair. Do not let the
older kids to stand near the chair while the baby is sitting in it, to
prevent them from pushing it over. Keep it far enough away from a table,
wall, or other surface so that your little one can not use them to push off.
Never allow the kids play around, and climb into it, or hang onto the high
chair. Do not let a baby to stand up in a high chair. Always keep your eyes
from the chair, especially if the baby has shown an ability to unfasten
safety straps.

Theodore Satou is a family man. He is a husband and dad, who works
mostly in front of computer, as a graphic designer and web developer. He is
passionate about reading and blogging. You can also check out his latest
website on Baby Bedding Crib Sets which reviews the best pink and brown baby

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Friday, October 16, 2009

The Playpen Question - To Use Or Not to Use?

By Ursula Ansbach

The Playpen Question: to use or not to use?

There is a pro and con to everything and the playpen is being re-considered
as a handy tool to help out struggling and very busy parents. Easy solution:
pop the toddler into the pen, provide a few toys, stay nearby and you can do
your laundry, write your article, or chat with visiting friends.

So what's not to like about the playpen? Baby is safe, and learning to be
independent by entertaining herself. She can practice pulling herself up and
crawl about and, really what's all this nonsense about it delaying motor
development or stunting creativity?

Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects of parenting and/or child care of
any sort whether it be babysitting, grandchild sitting, professional child
care, et al, is to really understand that the decision of what to do with
baby should be based primarily on what is in the best interests of the
child. Yes, the adults needs must be considered as well, because child care
is a partnership between the two of us. What's important to understand ,
however, is that our part of that partnership is to facilitate the baby's
needs. And, I'm sure we would all agree that those needs go beyond safety
and feeding to include providing an environment that is interesting so that
baby will be happy and will develop to the best of her ability.

Having established this , let's look at the playpen from the child's point
of view. To gain a clear perspective let me suggest that you think of your
favorite hobby or pastime and then place it in an eighth of the space
usually allotted to it with a small percentage of the usual materials
involved. My favorite pastime happens to be hiking. Now let me imagine that
instead of being able to hike the five to ten or so miles through a beloved
state park, I am forced to "hike" around a quarter mile track, with nothing
to look at but some snow fences and a couple trees.

Or, to make matters worse, I'm forced to "hike" in a racquetball court.
Wouldn't make me happy. Wouldn't give me the workout I'm used to. Would bore
me to tears. And even if I were only restricted to this horrid alternative
one out of every three hikes, I would still be miserable each time it was
forced on me. So, too, the child in the playpen.

Let's consider the argument that playpens make children independent. I
counter with the question: what choice do they have? They are plopped into a
confining space with no-one else in it and one or two toys. Baby can either
cry and scream (which does happen often) or compromise and become placid.
It's really much better when that independence is baby's choice - when baby
sits quietly on a soft pillow "reading a book by himself while having the
option to crawl about and roll balls, etc. Then he is showing me he's truly
enjoying his independence rather than being co-erced into playing alone.

Once baby is crawling and/or walking, the playpen is downright depressing
because of its limitations. At that point it truly can cause physical and
emotional damage, much as we don't want to admit it.

In answer to the argument that playpens support creativity let's look at the
advantages of letting baby explore a safe area freely. We will see that
there is no contest between which approach allows the most creativity to
develop. In a playpen there may be one, two or several toys. The amount must
be limited due to safety and not overcrowding the small space. Once those
are explored and the baby has pulled herself up and/or crawled around a
while, it's over.
In a safe environment baby can crawl as much as she wants. There is a
variety of materials to play with and a variety of ways to practice pulling
up. There are also people in that environment. YOU are part of that
environment and you are what makes baby feel safe enough to explore the

The question seems to become one of how to set up a safe and stimulating
environment, where table lamps will not fall on baby's head, etc. I will
discuss how to set up a safe and stimulating environment in my next article.

As for the time element...the argument that we do not have time to always be
with baby and to entertain him or her, let me go out on a limb and say that
when this safe area is well planned you will not need to interact and
entertain every moment. Your baby will be so interested in her environment
that you may not need to supply much more supervision than you would if she
were in a playpen that was used responsibly.

I didn't use a playpen when my boys were little. I did my "important" adult
things when they were napping or so focused on their play that I could keep
a watchful eye and still make that phone call.

Having said all this I may agree that there may be a time when a playpen
could be handy. Definitely for napping while travelling or for short
"emergency" times. Perhaps an older child has a nose bleed that needs
attending and you are the only adult available. At times like this the
playpen would be most appreciated.

But let's be careful to advise them too quickly. It is all too easy to
overuse them without even realizing how long baby has been in there! It is
also too easy to choose them with our needs rather than our baby's needs in

Ursula Ansbach, owner My Baby Furniture Plus, baby furniture;
Educator, Teacher, Parent.

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Friday, October 9, 2009

A Man Who Changed the World

By Rich Bordner

Albert McMakin, a 24 year old farmer, had just given his life to Christ the year before. He heard Dr. Mordecai Ham was coming to speak at a tent meeting. He was so exited that he invited countless friends and family members. Many of them agreed to come...except Billy.

Billy was the handsome, big-man-on-campus at the local high school. He didn't have much interest or time for Jesus. Albert, though, was smarter than your average bear. He borrowed a truck from a friend and asked Billy to drive it. "You don't even need to stay for the meeting," said Albert, "just drive me to and from." Since Billy didn't have a vehicle of his own and desperately wanted to drive, he agreed to Albert's proposition.

Billy stayed outside in the truck during the whole time, but he listened to Ham's words. By the end of the tent meeting, though, Jesus had his hooks in him; young Billy Graham walked forward during the alter call and gave his life to Jesus Christ.

Yes, Billy Graham is a man who has changed the world; but that's not who I'm referring to in the title of this post.

You've probably heard of Billy Graham, but have any of you heard of Albert McMakin? Chances are, the answer is no. However, his is no obscure name in the ledgers of heaven, for his enthusiasm and willingness to share the Good News of Christ to anyone willing to listen (and some, like Billy, who weren't willing to listen) has rippled through eternity in a grandiose way.

How different would the world be had McMakin kept the Good News to himself?

Do you have an Albert McMakin in your life? I do. I actually have several, and if you take even one of them out of my life, the trajectory of my steps goes in a very different direction. I am eternally grateful for each one of them: Mr. Wenger, Travis, Steve, Matt, Yohan, and Darwin (Isn't that ironic that one of the men who helped lead me to Christ is named "Darwin"! Ha! Take that, Richard Dawkins.).

Though sometimes fear and apathy get the best of me, It is men like these and stories like McMakin's that keep me intent on speaking of Jesus whenever I can. May you be encouraged by his story in the same direction.

Rich Bordner authors "The Pugnacious Irishman," a blog on the intersection of spirituality, ethics, and politics in the public square of ideas. He holds a B.A in English and Philosophy from THE Ohio State University (go Bucks!), and is in the process of earning a M.A in Philosophy from Biola University. Check out his blog at

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Seeking A New Normal

By Tim Tuohy

This is the foundation, a foreword if you will, for a series of articles that I have written. I've compiled these into a book and submitted them to a publisher. I hope you will find them encouraging and helpful in your life.

"In the beginning God" ... so begins the greatest book in the history of the world. Writers universally hope to begin their book as well as this book's beginning. Charles Dickens also had a great beginning that most writers envy. He began one of the greatest works of English literature, "A Tale of Two Cities", with "It was the best of times; it was the worst of times". Truly, every time, in every era, in every life, is the best of times and is the worst of times. As you read through this gospel it's my hope you will learn to see the best of times all around you and learn to believe in spite of the fact that the worst of times are occurring simultaneously.

I'm Timothy these articles contain my gospel:

I'm Timothy. Not the one from the Bible. The articles you are about to read are written not because I want to win you over to some religion or get you to understand the concept of "the Christ." I have written them that I may introduce you to the Jesus that I have come to know and having made that introduction he will draw you to himself if that is what is to be.

I was raised in a cult called "The Move" that was founded by a man who fraudulently used the name of God to prosper himself and provide for his own wealth. It is said that he died when his small plane was flown into a mountain side in Honduras, but I suspect he lived among the population until he reached a fine old age. It was he who, in the upheaval and fear of the American 1960's, perpetrated the myth on countless believers that God Himself had called them to sell everything they had and move to wilderness communes.

My parents moved to one of these 'farms' where we lived in a three room slab wood shack. The entire building was less than two hundred square feet. My parents, my three sisters, one of my two brothers and I all lived in that tiny hovel. We had neither electricity nor running water. A shared access to the outhouse served as the restroom for all the two hundred plus residents of the commune. To the exterior of the shack a ladder of scrap wood was nailed. This provided access through an opening covered by a blanket fragment to a space the size of a pup tent that served as my 'bed room'. The commune (one of many located all over North America) was located on an eight hundred acre farm outside a small town named Governor, near Macomb, straddling Hurst Road, in upstate New York.

To further complicate my escape from this life, I was involuntarily relocated a few months before my eighteenth birthday. The founder's sister took me to another commune near Grand Marais, Minnesota. So it was that on the morning of my eighteenth birthday, I walked down the hill from the commune into the town of Grand Marais and purchased a bus ticket to Dallas, Texas. After the purchase I was left with only five dollars and the clothes on my back for possessions. I waited all day for the bus to finally arrive. With only five dollars to my name and no home to return to, I climbed on board a bus and was on my way.

In my life I've been hungry, wet, and cold. I've gone days without food. I've been outside with nowhere to go when it was freezing cold. I've slept under bridges in the winter rain, under the stars and in alleys. I've hitch-hiked around the country and traveled to all fifty states. I have been discouraged to the point of contemplating suicide and been frightened so badly that I couldn't move. Through it all God was with me to help me to get where I am today so that I could share what is in these articles with you.

The purpose of these articles:

These articles are not intended to be a treatise on the religion of Christianity nor a version of Christology; it's intended to be a glimpse of Jesus. Who is this man, this God, this singularity in history whom we call 'King of Kings' and 'Lord of Lords'?

I am writing to introduce you to Jesus, as I know him. Maybe you too can experience his friendship as I have. In writing this book it is my objective to fulfill the commission given by Jesus when He said, "tell this gospel to the whole world." It's my hope that this book will reach others who have found themselves awakened in the darkness and are searching for a light to lead them out.

Do know that more detailed literature is written and published on the subject of Jesus and Christianity than I can read or quote in this book. Many works have been written and published by learned theologians. Many lives have been committed to the study of the religious and spiritual concepts of theology. If you are so inclined, I encourage you to search for the answers as I have. There are many things to be learned by reading the myriad inspired and encouraging works of these talented authors.

Foundations of these articles:

Before I begin allow me to lay a foundation of fundamentals that are 'key' to all the things I will write herein. These three 'keys' that follow are essential to all understanding of success in life.

First: God is not a technology. You can't learn to push the right button that will control his actions. There is no code that changes his program. Nor is there a program to run that will cause Him to process your will.

Second: Love God with all that you are. What is love but the act of consecrating one's self and committing one's self to something or someone outside one's self? In this context love is both desire and commitment. To love God with all that you are is to be committed to bringing your will in complete alignment with his.

Third: Love others as you love yourself. They too are God's creatures and though you may detest their actions, remember they too are bound to evil.

Spiritual salvation and the carnal harvest:

Salvation is being returned to full communication with God. The only way to acquire this is the way God provided. Only the sacrifice of Jesus can pay for your salvation. You can't behave well enough to deserve it. It's not compensation for your efforts. Once received, you can't hold onto it securely enough to keep it from slipping away. The only way to succeed in having a relationship with God is the grace provided through the blood of the lamb. You can't get to God without it and you can't get it without God drawing you to it. It's all God, we contribute only belief, and that too is a gift provided by God. Eternal life is found only in knowing God.

I'm not saying there is no consequence for our actions. There are consequences for everything we do. In an extreme example I may have committed murder, been tried, convicted, and sentenced to death. Accepting the gracious gift of God that is salvation for my spirit must not be confused with the harvest I must necessarily reap for the seeds I sowed with murder. This was illustrated in Arkansas after (then) Governor Huckabee commuted sentences of prisoners who appeared 'converted'. At least one of these was released back into the population only to return to his heinous ways and commit the same types of crimes he had been convicted of earlier. Had he truly been converted? I think not.

We may not judge the spirit, for that is the domain of God. We may only judge the actions of the individual. If the actions of the individual have been judged under the law then the consequences of the law must never be waived until the full portion of the judgment is met.

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

Don't be distracted that I write as if it is wrong to seek a more blessed and fulfilled life. It isn't. I'm not saying that you must endure pain, suffering, discomfort, or mental anguish either. You will not become righteous by virtue of your suffering. People will speak poorly about you whether you are rich or poor; whether you are successful and a lesson in failure.

Don't be afraid! God won't lose a single one of his elect. None will be lost. None will be left behind.


By way of summarization, I'm going to close each of these articles with three things; a promise from God, a key to success and a lyric from a song. The promise and the key should be incorporated into your soul and kept in your memory. The lyric may be substituted for any lyric of any song you find encouraging, what's important is to keep a song in your heart, because songs bring joy and joy is the ultimate success.

So if you've been looking for the messiah to deliver you from the mess you're in; you've found him! The gospel will reveal him to you.

God's promise: God loves you and has great plans for you. "For I know the plans I have for you," Declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Success Key: God has plans for you and they are good plans!

Sing out! "God is good, all the time ..." Don Moen