Baby news and other stuff.

Ok, for those not on my FaceBook or Twitter, or I don’t have ANY way of contacting you, I have a baby update: IT’S GONNA BE A GIRL! Yes, we were hoping for a boy since all we have is girls, but as long as it’s healthy and makes it to full term, we’re happy. We went for the ultrasound this morning to find out. And so far so good, baby looks healthy, and she was moving all over the place. During the part where it counted (as far as gender is concerned) she was still and we got a good look. Twice.

Baby is due the end of August and we can’t wait. Still tons to do before she gets here, but we’re working on it. Some things are done, and many are in progress.

Oh, and for those asking- I do not want a baby shower before the baby is born, if you are so inclined to throw me one. I will not stop anyone that wants to. But, please, respect my wishes on this one. The last one was born the day of hers, and there have been quite a few among family and friends that have had similar things happen. And this does not mean you can’t send any gifts or anything for baby, if you want to. I just don’t want a gathering or get together till after the fact. Plus, if a certain child the Hubby had is any indication, even with the increases of technology, it’s NEVER a guarantee.

Ok, other stuff. Earth Day is coming up, and though I’m all for saving the planet, I have to wonder about how a lot of people go about doing it. I scratch my head a lot and have to think real hard about just how “Earth Friendly” is what it is you are using/doing? A lot of times I can’t think of any way it really is. And that’s the sad part.

One of those things is Earth Hour. On paper, a wonderful idea, and even the founders have said that its main purpose is to raise awareness and get people more active in switching their lifestyles. That’s good. By all means I am not against that, as long as people follow-up on those changes in said lifestyle and make sure they really are good/better for the environment. Sadly there is one thing that my little pea brain cannot wrap itself around, and perhaps there is someone out there who can help me see that this, in fact, does not happen. When you run a business that has A LOT of electrical items (computers, kitchen items, etc) and they are considered to be electric HOGS (ie, uses a lot of electricity), one of the last things any business owner wants it’s everything to be TURNED ON AT THE SAME TIME. Shut off at the same time, fine. That’s no problem. What the problem and concern is the power surge that occurs as you are turning all these things on. It can run up the electric bill greatly and in some cases, dangerous. Granted the power grid and most electrical things are built better and can compensate for this, but not EVERY building out there can afford or whatever, the new fangled stuff they need. And here is my fear with Earth Hour.

Thinking about what I just said about Power Surges, and think about this. Take a small town that DOES not have the greatest running power plant. The area is too small to justify spending all the money needed right now to upgrade it, to make it more efficient. Chances are, if the population of said town is small enough that there won’t be much hoopla after they TURN their lights back on. But it could cause problems. Remember, the place is old and not upgraded. And yes, those places do exist.

Now think about a city. Maybe New York city, with one of the largest city populations in the USA. Granted, they have a lot of power plants and I imagine a lot of them are in better shape than the last one I mentioned. It has, as of the last census, 8,274,527 people living in it. If ALL of them, or the majority of them, turned off their lights at the same time, no problem. It’d just be really dark. But can you imagine the stress and strain it would have on the Power Grid? That scares me. It could cause major problems within one of the old apartment buildings (not all of them are like you see on Selling New York), and possibly a fire or a longer term blackout. I don’t even want to venture the worst case scenario for the power plants. Plus depending on how the electric companies charge, you could see a higher bill.

Now, there is another concern I have here. Do the people who start things like this actually research a lot of the things that are involved? Is it really more environmentally safe to use candles over lightbulbs? Would they be willing to give up their precious cell phones that are made from oil products? Do they really believe that if we went totally over to solar panels and windmills that we’ll be able to keep up any kind of quality of life?

A company recently decided to change the packaging of some of their cookies to try to help the environment. They went from cardboard to a plastic cover. They had been using recycled cardboard to begin with. Plastic is made from oil. The same oil that we had to deal with the huge oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The same oil used to make gasoline that creates a lot of emissions bad for the air. The same oil, that when you make something out of it, is not biodegradable. And depending on what kind of methods you use, etc, it may not be recyclable. Tell me how smart that was.

Honestly, it feels like people are trying to hard, and several in the wrong direction. And just like with many things, the general public will automatically deem it as fact without researching it for themselves to make sure. That’s honestly the scariest part of all of this. We do need to make sure we take care of the environment. We really do only have one planet and things aren’t looking the greatest for her right now (but I doubt it’s as bad as the media says. The same media that like to sensationalize everything), and we should raise awareness.

But don’t be stupid. Ask questions. If you don’t feel like you’ve gotten a good enough answer, or you know it to be wrong, keep asking, and keep searching. And as I’ve said, if there is anyone out there who can verify or disprove what I have said about the power grids, I would love to hear from you. It is something that I am genuinely curious about, and wonder about the exact impact it would have.

Next time: Vacation update, Dragon Age II review and a bunch of craziness :).

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