Guess what You’ve Won?!

635107935778714956This Yahoo! article came across my feed today:

Pakistani Game Show’s Baby Giveaway Sparks Controversy

Orphaned infants are being given away as prizes on a TV game show in Pakistan, prompting both condemnation and praise of the show and the organization behind the scheme.

Apparently the show, Aman Ramazan, is like Pakistan’s Price is Right, a TV game show where contestants answer questions about the Quran to win various prizes, stuff like motorcycles and dryers and … babies. The show, which broadcasts for seven hours a day during Ramadan, has given away two infant children to be adopted by the winners.

My initial gut reaction:  How can you possibly argue that giving a baby, a child, a human being made in the image and likeness of God as a prize upholds the dignity of the human person?

Dignity of babies

Well, the director of the welfare organization that provides (donates?) the babies for the game show answered my question:

Chhipa Welfare Association, which takes in abandoned babies and provides a safe haven for parents to drop off those they are unable or unwilling to care for, said it receives up to 15 infants a month.

“Our team finds babies abandoned on the street, in garbage bins—some of them dead, others mauled by animals. So why not ensure the baby is kept alive and gets a good home?” director Ramzan Chhipa told CNN. “We didn’t just give the baby away. We have our own vetting procedure. This couple was already registered with us and had four or five sessions with us.”

Hussain said the drive for ratings is not what’s behind the idea, and also said he disagrees with critics who feel the show is trivializing the issue of abandoned children. “These are the disenfranchised babies that grow up to be street kids and used for suicide bombing attacks. We have tried to show an alternative,” he told CNN. “Telling people to take these kids off the rubbish on the streets, raise them and make them a responsible citizen, not to destroy society through terrorism.”

He added, “We’ve created a symbol of peace and love, that’s our show’s theme—to spread love. I’m setting an example, giving a childless couple an abandoned child.”

What do you think?

The Baby Name Game

Choosing the name for a child is, in my opinion, sort of a big deal.  When we were thinking about what we wanted to name our son (our first), I got really stressed about it. What if we choose the wrong name?  What if it seems fine, but then once we get home and start using it, we hate it?

This is how your child who then becomes a youth then a teen, young adult, and then adult will be identified FOREVER.


I want to be friends with this person.

A name can say so much about you and can end up defining parts of your life based on how it is used or nicknamed.  You’re stuck with it (at least until your 18) and you can’t do anything about it.

Yeah, no pressure.

Yet, here we are, playing the name game again with our 2nd child, a little girl.

In my family, we have a tradition unintentionally started by my sister who had the first grandbaby to not reveal the name we choose until the baby is born.  This is a good thing for a couple of reasons. Read More

Case of the Mondays

Beating the crap out of the fax machine (or maybe phone) sometimes feels like the right option...

Some days just get you.

Today is one of those days for me.  As I type, I can hear my son, who has been laid down for a nap (due to his non-stop fussiness this ENTIRE.FREAKIN’.DAY), throwing various items out of his crib and across the room.  And, I continue to type.

The phone hasn’t stopped ringing.  E-mails haven’t stopped coming in.  The list of things I need to get done this week keeps growing.  The stress of upcoming life-changes seems to be sitting directly on top of my eyebrows.  Deadlines are bearing down on me.  And, I can’t get the doggone blog homepage to look right. Read More

Slow Down, You’re Moving Too Fast!

In the past couple of weeks, my 14 month old finally got off his lazy crawling knees and began walking around. Feel free to scoff at us and pat yourself on the back about how advanced your child was to be walking before he/she was 1.  I’m not jealous.  Because, as anyone who has children will tell you, once they start walking, everything changes.

The first big change, of course, is that my son doesn’t like riding in a cart, being held, or being relegated to a seat or stroller nearly as much.  He wants to have those two little feet on the ground so he can practice walking.  Even at home, though he still plays with his toys, he’s been more interested in carrying them as he does laps around the kitchen and living room.

Even these guys move faster than my son...

I know there will come a time when I don’t think the walking, nay running away, isn’t cute anymore.  But, for now, I love watching my little  “drunken sailor”.  You know, the wide legged, arms up for balance, wobbling around walk. It’s just the cutest thing.

But, the best thing about my son learning to walk?  He has slowed me down.

Contrary to the Southern stereotype, I actually have never been very good at “moseying about”.  Yes, life moves slower in the South and compared to my Northern friends and relatives, I don’t move fast.  But, walking with a 14 month old is even slower than moseying – it’s a snail’s pace.

It’s tough for this fast walker to slow down.  But, I have to say, I’m really enjoying it.  I’m enjoying taking in the world in a different way.  I like noticing things that I wouldn’t have noticed before.  I love seeing what my son is discovering about the world as he touches, smells, licks (yes, licks), and looks at new and exciting things that he couldn’t see when he was crawling on his belly.

How quickly we tend to rush through life!  Half of the time, we don’t even notice other cars on the road when we’re driving our regular routes because it’s become practically robotic movements for us.  How can we notice the blooming trees or beauty of people when we don’t even really see the road?  How can we be polite and generous to others around us in stores and restaurants or at work when we can’t be bothered to notice them?

Not my child, but he does the same thing - taste the flowers.

People are right – every stage of your child’s life is interesting and exciting.  But, contrary to everyone’s opinions, I like this walking stage.  It’s a big change for the little guy that’s giving him a new lease on life.  And, it’s a welcome change for me, as he teaches me to slow down and smell (and, sometimes even lick!) the roses.

Cry Room Evangelists

There’s a space in every church, hidden away in corners and behind pews.  It’s the place where tiny little Catholics get taken because they are too noisy or distracting.  It’s a room of pure chaos, noise, snacks, and understanding looks.  You may know it as The Cry Room, The Quieting Room, The Parents & Toddlers Room…

But, I know it as “My Own Personal Hell.”

That's probably not how the babies feel...but, you never know!

I seriously hate the cry room with a burning passion.  During this first year of my son’s life, my husband and I have had an ongoing discussion about what to do with our son during Mass.  Because of my position as youth minister, we sit in the very front row of the church with the teens, directly in front of Father and the rest of the congregation.  Not exactly a convenient location for “easy escapes” with an overly active child.

Initially, having him at Mass was no problem – he mostly slept.  Then, he began getting mobile…and noisy.  Trips to the back of the church or the cry room became more frequent.  Now, at 14 months, one of us has to sit in the cry room with him because he can’t even make it through the processional hymn without trying to dive from our arms onto the floor. Read More