ivman's blague rotating header image loading ... please wait....

Posts Tagged ‘children’

How Simple Are Crayons?

Over Christmas break, Becka and our grandson Drew watched an online video from Mister Rogers Neighborhood on PBS's site about how crayons are made. It's amazing to see how many steps are involved in the process. If you'd rather see a newer, shorter video on the process, you can view it on the How Stuff Works site. You need to scroll down halfway and, for whatever reason, you have to manually unmute the video. The videos reminded me of pictures in my files. After a bit of web researching, I came up with a lot of neat info.

This month the Chinese New Year begins on January 23. The Chinese have a twelve-year rotation, based on the Chinese zodiac. We will be entering the year of the Dragon. Below is a chart telling which animal corresponds to which year for quite a few years back (if you want to see what year you were born in) and more years yet to come.

Below is a picture of crayons carved by Diem Chau — one crayon for each of the twelve animals.
Click here to continue reading this post ⇒

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Etch A Sketch

picture of Etch A Sketch

Did you know that the Etch A Sketch is 50 years old? It was invented by a Frenchman in the late 1950's. It was licensed to the Ohio Art Company and debuted as Etch A Sketch in July 1960. I had one as a child and spent many happy, frustrating hours playing with it, but I could never produce anything astounding. If you have ever had one, were you ever able to draw amazing things or even write legibly?

According to Wikipedia:

An Etch A Sketch is a thick, flat gray screen in a plastic frame. There are two knobs on the front of the frame in the lower corners. Twisting the knobs moves a stylus that displaces aluminum powder on the back of the screen, leaving a solid line. The knobs create lineographic images. The left control moves the stylus horizontally, and the right one moves it vertically.

As I researched for this blog post, I was surprised that there are actual Etch A Sketch artists out there. Here are some pictures I found online of the creations I could never have done. I was unable to find attribution for some of them. If I've posted yours and you would like credit and a link, let me know.

I read that a young child did this map of the United States!

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

Someone was able to do an optical illusion with the Etch A Sketch.

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

Here's the Golden Gate Bridge.

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

Here's some ancient Egyptian artistry done by Etch A Sketch artist Kevin Davis.

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

Here's the Mona Lisa by Etch A Sketch artist Jeff Gagliardi.

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

Here's "Starry Night" by VanGogh, and Jeff Gagliardi.

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

This one was done by Etch A Sketch artist George Vlosich. The drawing looks too perfect to be real! This guy takes Etch A Sketch art to a whole new level!

picture of Etch A Sketch artwork

There are different products that are spin-offs of the Etch A Sketch. Here's a pocket Etch A Sketch.

picture of a pocket Etch A Sketch

Here's an Etch A Sketch pen that might offer some competition for students' attention.

picture of Etch A Sketch pen

There's an app for it...?

picture of Etch A Sketch for iPod

Now here's one I have a hard time believing.

picture of an Etch A Sketch with Windows

I'm a little nostalgic since my 40 year high school reunion was this past weekend up in Ohio. I was not able to attend, but I have heard that those who did enjoyed it. Since I'm on this nostalgia kick, I'm remembering that 10 years ago there was a lot of hype about the y2k bug. Below is a solution proposed by one company (in jest, of course).

Our goal is to remove all computers from the desktop by Jan 1, 1999. In place of the current computer, everyone will be provided with an Etch A Sketch. There are several benefits to this move:

1. No y2k problems

2. No technical glitches keeping work from being done.

3. No more wasted time reading and writing e-mails.

4. Better development of upper body strength.

In anticipation of your questions, an FAQ (Frequently Asked Question) has been provided:

Q: My Etch A Sketch has all of these funny little lines all over the screen.
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: How do I turn my Etch A Sketch off?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: What's the shortcut for Undo?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: How do I create a New Document window?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: How do I set the background and foreground to the same color?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: What is the proper procedure for rebooting my Etch A Sketch?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: How do I delete a document on my Etch A Sketch?
A: Pick it up and shake it.

Q: How do I save my Etch A Sketch document?
A: Don't shake it.


If this has got you itching to try your hand at an Etch A Sketch, Ohio Arts offers an online virtual Etch A Sketch.

What are your memories of Etch A Sketches? Are they good ones?

I'll end this post with a comic I found online that is reminiscent of the Far Side.

picture of an Etch A Sketch comic


"At salvation your spiritual DNA changes" - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=

The future will be sketched with what we've drawn from the past.

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

“M” is for – – – ?

picture of letter M

Are you ready yet for Mother's Day? With Mother's Day coming up in less than two weeks, I thought I'd do a post about moms that might serve as a reminder to some readers to get that card, gift, or whatever you plan to give your mom. I'm posting three short pieces on the theme of moms.

"M" is for - - -?

Miss Jones had been giving her students in second grade a lesson on science. She had explained about magnets and showed how they would pick up nails and other bits of iron. Afterwards it was review time and she asked, "My name begins with the letter 'M' and I pick up things. What am I?"

A little boy on the front row said, "You're a mom!"


Here's a little different twist on the "M" is for mom theme:

A little boy walked up to the librarian to check out a book called Comprehensive Guide for Mothers.

When the librarian asked him if it was for his mom, he answered, "No, it's for me!"

"Why would you be checking this book out? You're a little boy."

"Because," said the boy, beaming from ear to ear, "I just became a moth collector last month!"


It's interesting to see the evolution that mothers undergo through the course of their children's lives.

4 years of age: My mommy can do anything!

8 years of age: My mom knows a lot! A whole lot!

12 years of age: My mother doesn't really know quite everything.

14 years of age: Naturally, Mom doesn't know that either.

16 years of age: Mom? She's hopelessly old-fashioned.

18 years of age: That old woman? She's way out of date!

25 years of age: Well, Mom might know a little bit about it.

35 years of age: Before we decide, let's get Mom's opinion.

45 years of age: I wonder what Mom would have thought about it?

65 years of age: I wish I could talk it over again with Mom....

Do you have any comments you'd like to share on moms or Mother's Day?


(edited 29 April 2009):
When I had to blow away my blog because it had been hacked into, I lost some of the pictures that I hadn't saved on my computer. There were two in particular that I could not replace in the post nice bathroom humor - the sign in a restroom in the Philippines and the sign in the upscale restroom. Thanks to several readers, those images are now restored.


"There's no reason to boast in your human pedigree." - Dr. Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=

As I thought about how mothers feed their babies with little tiny spoons and forks, I wondered what Chinese mothers use. Toothpicks?

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook


picture of will

What have you inherited? Inheritance is far more than what can be listed in a "last will and testament." Some of what makes up our "inheritance" becomes crystal clear when we, as parents, look at our children and see ourselves, our parents, and/or our grandparents in our children's appearance, mannerisms, interests, and personalities. For instance, I've inherited my dad's bizarre sense of humor and have passed it on to my own children. I have also inherited from both of my parents a body with the annoying ability to extract every calorie and every fat gram from every ounce of food that passes through my lips! Some of what we pass on to our children is not fully realized until our children are well into adulthood. Read on....

This past week I was strongly reminded of several other physical traits that get passed on from generation to generation in our family. Our son Mark has given blood frequently over the past ten years. His blood is highly sought after by the blood-letters since he is a universal donor, O-negative. He is fortunate not to have inherited my tendency to vasovagal episodes when giving blood, unlike our daughter Nora who shares the same issues that dear old dad grapples with. However, this past Monday, for the first time, Mark had a reaction to the chlorhexidine gluconate that is now being used to clean the arm before the needle is inserted. His was the same reaction I described in my post medical faux pas, and his arm looks every bit as bad as mine did. The doctor put him on Prednisone for a week to try to throw off the ill effects of the reaction. Poor guy!

For most of my life I have known that type 2 diabetes does not run in my family – it gallops! My great-grandmother had diabetes, as did my grandfather and his nine siblings, as does my mother whose younger sister is officially prediabetic. My extended family is far-flung and has not kept in close contact, and therefore I do not know what is happening in many of their lives. However, last week I heard about the first person I know of in my generation of my great-grandma's family who has now been diagnosed with diabetes. I figure that it's just a matter of time until I become diabetic, but I've been doing everything I can to delay the onset for as long as possible.

These two bits of news got me to thinking about what we inherit. The following jokes poke fun at different aspects of inheritances and heritage.

Inheritance jokes...

A little boy came home from school one day and handed his father his grade card, with nothing but D's and F's on it. Before the father had time to react, the boy asked him, "So tell me, Dad, is it heredity or environment?"


A man died with $30,000 to his name. He wanted to be remembered after he was gone, and his last request was that his wife be sure to buy a nice memorial stone. After everything was done at the funeral home and cemetery, she told her closest friend that there was none of the $30,000 left.

The friend exclaimed, "How can that be?!"

The widow said, "Well, the funeral cost me $6,500. And of course I made a donation to the church. That was $500 in my husband's honor, and I spent another $500, you know, for the wake, the food, etc. The rest went for the memorial stone he insisted on."

The friend asked, "$22,500 for the memorial stone? My word, how big is it?!"

The widow replied, "Three carats."


A math teacher posed this problem, "A wealthy man dies and leaves ten million dollars. One fifth is to go to his wife, one fifth is to go to his son, one sixth to his butler, and the rest to charity. Now, what does each one get?"

The savvy student answered, "A lawyer!"


A woman asks her husband, "Do you love me only because my father died and left me a fortune?"

"Of course not," he says. "I'd love you no matter who left you the money."


Two friends meet in the street. One looked forlorn and almost on the verge of tears. The other man said, "Hey, how come you look like your whole world caved in?"

The sad fellow said, "Well, let me tell you. Three weeks ago, an uncle died and left me forty thousand dollars."

"Well, that's sad about your uncle, but all that money is not bad either."

"Hold on, I'm just getting started. Two weeks ago, a cousin I never knew died and left me eighty-five thousand, free and clear."

"Wow, I'd like that!"

"Last week my grandfather passed away. I inherited almost a quarter of a million from him."

"Then, how come you look so glum?!"

"This week ... nothing yet!"


A highly successful business man wrote in his last will and testament: To my high school teacher, who always told me I'd never amount to anything and whom I promised to mention in my will, "Hi, Mrs. Matthews!"


Besides various physical conditions and the "stuff" found in our last will and testament, there are other important bits of heritage we pass on to our children. What are you seeking to pass on to your children that cannot be quantified in a will? Some people concentrate more on inherited conditions over which they don't have control or on a large inheritance which we've seen lately can take wings and fly away. What values and ideals are you seeking to pass on to your children? It is undeniable that more is caught than is taught.


"Do you ever daydream about what God could do with your life? ... We need Christian dreamers." - Rob Campbell

=^..^= =^..^=

"Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the national debt." - Herbert Hoover

Apparently the national debt has been around for quite a while if Hoover was talking about it. He would probably be shocked to know what it has become and to what dizzying heights (or depths) our current leaders are trying to send it!

picture of national debt cartoon

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Kids on Love

picture of kids

Everyone has his own perspective on things. The description of this blog right under the blog name reads "one French professor’s humorous and serious perspectives on life…." While I definitely share my perspectives on life, I'm very interested in what others think too – that's why I invite people to make comments on my blog.

Of all the perspectives out there, children have some of the best things to say about many issues of life, some of which they don't fully understand and others that they understand surprisingly well. Today's instant vacation is some thoughts kids have about love. I don't know the source of these – obviously someone who is around children a lot.

Kids' thoughts on love

"When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That's Love."

"Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."

"Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My mommy and daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss."

"Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well."

"Love is when mommy gives daddy the best piece of chicken."

"Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day."

"I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones."

"One of the people has freckles and so he finds somebody else who has freckles too." Andrew, age 6

"No one is sure why it happens, but I heard it has something to do with how you smell ... that's why perfume and deodorant is so popular." Mae, age 9

"It isn't always just how you look. Look at me, I'm handsome as anything and I haven't got anybody to marry me yet." Brian, age 7

Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough. Lynnette, age 8

"They want to make sure their rings don't fall off because they paid good money for them." Gavin, age 8

"They are just practicing for when they might have to walk down the aisle someday and do the holy matchimony thing." John, age 9

When they're rich. Pam, age 7

The law says you have to be eighteen, so I wouldn't want to mess with that. Curt, age 6

"Yell out that you love them at the top of your lungs ... and don't worry if their parents are right there." Manuel, age 8

"Don't do things like have smelly, green sneakers. You might get attention, but attention ain't the same thing as love." Alonzo, age 9

"Lovers will just be staring at each other and their food will get cold ... other people care more about their food." Bart, age 9

"It's love if they order one of those desserts that's on fire. They like to order those because it's just like how their hearts are - on fire." Christine, age 9

"Be a good kisser. It might make your wife forget that you never take out the trash." Dave, age 8

"Don't forget your wife's name..that will mess up the love." Erin, age 8

"Love will find you. Even if you hide from it. I have been trying to hide from it since I was five, but the girls keep finding me." Dave, age 8

"I'm not rushing into being in love. I'm finding the fourth grade hard enough." Regina, age 10

It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them. Anita, age 9

You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming. Alan, age 10

No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with. Kirsten, age 10

Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then. Camille, age 10

You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids. Derrick, age 8

There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there? Kelvin, age 9

Tell your wife that she looks pretty even if she looks like a truck. Ricky, age 10


Do you have any quotations on this subject from kids in your life?


"The problem with man is not the lack of evidence, but the suppression of evidence." - Dr. Ravi Zacharias

=^..^= =^..^=

After a quarrel, a wife said to her husband, "You know, I was a fool when I married you." The husband replied, "Yes, dear, but I was in love and didn't notice."

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Page 2 of 7123...Last »