31 July 2008

Going Camping

I'll be gone all weekend camping at the beach with family. Have a great weekend everyone and I'll see you on the flip side!

28 July 2008

The Faceless Zoo

So the last few months I've been knitting. I got kind of bored with blankets and scarves so I decided to try something a little different. I decided I wanted to do animals.

I found a pattern for a bunny and thought that should be easy enough so I tried it. For the life of me I can't find the first pink bunny I made but here are the others I've made since then. If you can't tell they are another bunny, a penguin and an elephant. I haven't put faces on them yet and to be honest I'm not sure I want to. I kind of like the faceless look. Tell me your honest opinion.

This last one is penguin, bunny and the sock monkey bythelbs gave to me in their natural habitat

And just for fun I found this button on Facebook Flair. It makes me and T-bone laugh every time. He wants a t-shirt with this one it.

25 July 2008

Full Circle

Since T-Bone and I have been married--almost 6 years--we have lived in 5 apartments. We are about to make it 6. When we moved to the town we live in we moved to brand new apartments. We were the first residents and we were pretty happy to be there. They are income based apartments and we were paying the same amount in rent for a two bedroom as we were paying for the one bedroom we were living in. We had Boogers who was about 5 months old at the time we moved in. It was a wonderful apartment and we had great friends around us.

Then we heard of a new complex opening up a couple miles away. T-Bone was looking to start going to school full time and working part time instead of the other way around so we were looking for any opportunity to lower expenses again. Luckily we were able to get into where we live paying less for a three bedroom than we were for a two bedroom because of our income. We couldn't pass it up. We've lived here for two years and I enjoy it. The apartment buildings are close together but with the exception of some crazy neighbors that don't live here anymore it's been a good place to live...not to mention having three bedrooms. Last summer we were preparing to sign our lease by submitting all the paperwork that we need to. Our manager said that there was a rule that they had overlooked when we moved in that applied to us.

There must be 4 residents in a 3 bedroom.

At the time we were trying to get pregnant but were unsuccessful. We didn't know what we were going to do. They were holding a two bedroom in the complex for us if we didn't get pregnant. Luckily I did. I miscarried that baby 3 days after the date of our lease so technically we fulfilled the requirements and bought us another year. This year we're not that lucky. Our lease is up again in September and while the manager says that they are going to help us through this I don't know how long that can last.

A few months ago we decided that we wanted to keep our options open and sent in applications to the apartment complex that we used to live in and another one close by. We didn't think that anything would happen but we were hoping that we would be able to secure something in a lower bracket before T-Bone started working full time again. We have accumulated quite the student loan debt over the past couple years and can't afford an expensive place. Plus we didn't know how long we were going to be able to stay here. On Thursday July 10th we got a letter saying the complex had an opening.

At first we didn't want to take it because it was a two bedroom and we thought we could hold out for a three. But then we started feeling uneasy about the decision and decided to go for it. In all of our years applying and re-certifying in these income based apartments we have never had all our paperwork come back in less than a month.

This time it was back in less than a week.

It truly was an answer to many prayers that we gave. We needed the cheapest rent we could find and we pretty much got it. We have to sacrifice a room, but there are worse things than living in a two bedroom apartment. I mean seriously, we were so spoiled living here. Pretty much all my friends live in that complex; I'm there every single day walking with Lacey or playing at the pool or just hanging out with mine and Boogers' friends. It is such a blessing to know that we are being looked after, that Heavenly Father is mindful of us and our needs.

And that's not the half of it. We will not only be able to pay off T-Bone's loans but still have a little to put aside. We have not saved anything for a couple years while we've lived off student loans. I'm looking forward to saving now. Where we live now there was the fear that if T-Bone made too much then our rent would go up (I know it doesn't sound logical for this type of program. It almost makes it so we don't want to try to get a better job for fear of getting kicked out of your apartment) Where we will live our rent will stay what it is no matter what we make. There is a cap on income where they will kick you out but it gives us a much better chance at saving money to eventually buy a house. That's our goal. We want to be successful, contributing members of society and without moving we would have had much less of a chance than we do.

So here we are, moving one more time. Our 6th apartment in 6 years (we pretty much will be moving right around our anniversary). Coming full circle back to where we came from--literally. We will be living in the same building as we did before. I'm not looking forward to the actual moving, but I'm looking forward to what moving will give us.

Flip Flop Search Term Friday

So I was checking outmy Google Analytics this morning and a search term I got yesterday inspired me to do a Flip Flop Search Term Friday. So here is what people have been searching for lately.

Jumbo booty--yeah this is the one from yesterday. I hope they found some.

how to leave your spouse or how to get your spouse to leave or some other version of that--this one I find kind of depressing. I get a lot of them

yelling and screaming in the middle of the night--this one is just intriguing

horseflies jersey weddings--It seems like there is a horsefly problem in New Jersey. Anyone ever been there?

is nordstrom owned my a mormon family--I don't know, is it? I highly doubt it.

pictuer of young grils who loves flip flops--This one just creeps me out.

And this one is just gross and sad: husband so addicted to video games he pees in a cup

What's come up on your searches lately?

24 July 2008

Memory Meme

There's a new meme going around these days and it's a lot of fun, so I thought I'd get into the action to! It's all about memories that you have of me, your dear old flip flop mama. If you knew me before I was called that consider yourself privileged. Okay most of you--if not all--probably did. Here's how to play:

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I have had together. It doesn’t matter if you knew me a little or a lot—anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. If you leave a memory about me, I’ll assume you’re playing the game and I’ll come to your blog and leave one about you.

Have fun!

23 July 2008

Hooray a Give-a-way!

No sadly not from me...but from someone totally awesome so that counts! My friend Bythelbs is hosting a giveaway for $25 bucks to another friend, Hollywood's Flaky Friends store (and yes that is a Flaky Friend in the picture). Go on over to Bythelbs and do what she tells you to enter. Oh and if you do go over there, please, please please mention you came from me cuz that means I get an extra entry. Hooray!

21 July 2008

Competent Supervision

The other day I was examining the "Caution" writing on the floaties that Boogers uses in the pool. At first glance it was all the same stuff...don't leave your kid unattended, these are not lifesaving devices, blah, blah, blah. Yeah we get the drill. But then I looked closer.

Anyone know what withints means? or cupervision? or what a chld is? I love how they also made wornonupper and andunder one word. I'm not sure whoever made these was under competent supervision...or is is cupervision?

17 July 2008

In the right place

It's been a long time since I've been to the Temple. I mean I can't accurately remember when I went--I fairly sure I went sometime in February though. Now before your imaginations run wild with sins or infractions I could have committed let me put that to rest. I was just lazy. I let other things get in the way. It would be Ward Temple Night and T-Bone wouldn't be able to go with me or just got home too late, so I would stay home. Then there was the time I really wanted to go but that was the week that gas prices jumped like $0.30 cents in two days. Then there were other times I was just too dang tired--read lazy.

Well last Thursday it was Ward Temple Night again and I was faced with a dilemma. Go to the Temple or stay home? T-Bone had a meeting to go to that night so I would have to find a babysitter for Boogers. I was chatting with my friend Lacey in the morning and she asked me if I had planned to go. I told her the usual, "I want to but...." As I thought about it that day I realized that there was no reason I couldn't go, I just didn't want to put forth the effort to make it work. So I pulled myself together and called my Dad to see if he could watch Boogers. He was free and Lacey and I went together.

For those that are not of my faith the Temple is a beautiful place where we do sacred ordinances for people who have passed on. We don't talk about what we do there but not because they are secret; they are just very sacred to us. As I was sitting in the temple I was overwhelmed with a feeling of peace. I had that burning in the bosom feeling that tells you that something is right. I felt the Spirit so strongly "tell" me that I was in the right place; that I had made the right decision in coming to the Temple. I needed that reminder that night and I was so grateful to have received it.

Don't put off going to the Temple. I know that I won't always receive these feelings and have experiences like this but at least I can remember that that is the place that Heavenly Father wants me to be.

15 July 2008

My nephew hates me...and other happenings from the last couple days

My brother-in-law (my sister's husband) had a business trip in Alabama this week so instead of trying to keep two little boys occupied by herself my sister came down for a few days. She's been here since Saturday night and will be here until tomorrow when Tyler comes home.

Boogers and her cousin Caden have been having fun playing together and have done really well actually. Emily also has an almost one year old too who absolutely despises me. I have no idea why and neither does Emily but Tanner wants nothing to do with me. At first we thought he was just having a rough couple days but when he went happily to my father-in-law who he has never even met we knew something was up. Then when we were driving home from the beach and I sat in the back with him and Boogers he screamed the whole way home. I tried to give him things that he liked--his mom's cell phone, a book or a toy--but he would just turn his head away and scream louder. It was like my very presence in his world was toxic. I'm not sure what I did to be on the receiving end of such hatred but I hope he realizes that I'm not all that bad. This morning he waved at me with a smile on his face so that's progress.

Yesterday we went to the zoo. Here are a few pictures:

The hippos were sleeping right up against the glass so it looks like they are touching their faces

I'd never seen baby flamingos. There were a whole bunch of them and then the mama's were sitting on their nests.

My Dad bought the kids binoculars so they could see all the animals real close. Caden kept calling them octiclators.

After we came home from the zoo, we had the kids rest for a little while then we went to the beach for the evening. I had too many pictures so here's a slideshow. I would have gotten more pictures of Tanner but he was sitting in the sand with Emily. Plus one of the kids was throwing wet sand and it got in my zoom of my camera. Hopefully I can get it out. I don't think I can listen to that grinding sound for too much longer every time I open or close my camera.

13 July 2008

Do me a favor

Please go to my friend Jen's blog and read this post. She has struggled with infertility for some time and has had to pay out of pocket for treatment--as most of those who have this disease have to. It is an undue burden that has been borne by way too many couples. She has a wonderful letter that we can send to our local senator/representative to change the law regarding insurance coverage for infertility treatments. Please do me a favor and call, email, or mail a form of this letter--you may change it to personalize it--so that we can get the word out.

12 July 2008

Do you like it? Do you like it?

Okay so tell me what you think. There are a few tiny kinks to work out--only because I'm so annoyingly picky but didn't Summer do a fantastic job??

(Oh and to be even more annoying I'm changing my name again...flip flop mama just makes more sense)

10 July 2008

Changes coming soon!

I don't think I ever posted this but I won a free blog design from Summer when she had her Birthday Bash! She's working on it right now and I'm so excited! It was such a surprise to win something and I'm looking forward to a new, customized look!

Oh and did you see me on the Price is Right? No? I'm not surprised...If you pause and then play the tape really slow you can see me jumping up and down when one of our group members got called up but only if you know it's me. Oh well...

07 July 2008

You don't like it, you love it

After dinner I was chugging down what was left of my milk. Because of that I let out a series of burps that were less than ladylike--sorry Mom. T-Bone said "Oh that's real nice Jumbo. You're not going to get anything special tonight." I countered with one of my new favorite lines from Weezer's song The Greatest Man That Ever Lived, "If you don't like it, you can shove it. But you don't like it, you love it!"

T-Bone, the quick-witted man that he is said, "Well then I love it."

This is where Boogers piped in and said, "No, Dad you can shove it."

Good thing she has no idea what she's saying! Oh and while we're on the subject of Weezer, go buy the new CD. It is their best ever!

06 July 2008

Selfish, me? I don't think so

Go read this article and then come back. I'll wait...(If you can't read it all don't worry, I'll summarize it for you)

Okay did you read it all? It you couldn't stomach it or just didn't have time to read it I'll sum it up for you. (First I have to give credit to Mormon Mommy Wars for bringing it to my attention) It is about two separate couples who have taken sterilization measures to make sure that they will never have children. I'm okay with that--no everyone has what it takes to be a parent. Only bring children into this world if you want them. But that's not the reason they don't want to have children. They claim that children are a negative impact on the environment, that every child born on this earth is a danger to the future of the planet. One woman even went to great lengths to have an abortion because she "mistakenly" got pregnant. Sorry, don't have sex then! That is what sex is for, ya know? (Okay for a few other reasons but when you get down to the nitty gritty of it, that's what it's for.) In fact just after I read this article T-Bone and I were watching a nature documentary about wild horses in Montana. It was eye-opening to watch these horses in action. They chose families and stayed together. They mourned together and they reproduced. Why? Because they knew that they needed to reproduce to survive.

Anyway, enough on the sex thing, back to the couples...They call having children "selfish" because all it's for is to carry on our own gene pools. I have to say from the one kid I did make I'm pretty darn happy about carrying on my gene pool. That kid is wonderful if I do say so myself! I must be the most selfish person in the world according to them. What about all the animals in the world reproducing? No one tells them what to do. Are they selfish because they want to carry on their gene pool? It's just innate. Once again they do it because they know their species cannot survive without it.

I want to know what their answer to the question "What would happen to the planet if everyone believed as you do and stopped having children for the sake of the planet?" I'm sure they would be thrilled that there was no more carbon footprints left by anyone. Seriously though? As a member of my church I know that the earth was created for our use. Now, I'm all about conservation and recycling. We all can do our part to keep our Earth healthy. Moderation in all things. But I also know that it is not only necessary for children to come to this earth but we have a divine responsibility to bring children here.

As a woman who has one child and desperately wants to hold another in her arms but is having trouble achieving that goal, this is heartbreaking. I'm almost glad that these women are not having children so that they can't pollute them with this nonsense. I can tell you that bringing children into this world is one of the most selfless things any person can do. Now tell me who's selfish?

05 July 2008

A Day at the Fair

On Monday we took Boogers to the Del Mar Fair (yes, the Del Mar Fair, not the San Diego County Fair...it will never be called that by me). We had planned on going because Weird Al was doing his concert but at the last minute we decided we would go to just have fun in the afternoon so we could get Boogers home in bed at a decent hour. We bought a value pack ticket thing at Costco and we had no idea how much we saved. The pack was 4 Fair tickets, a parking pass and 50 ride tickets for about $50 bucks. We figured out that we pretty much got $30 dollars of ride tickets for free so we were totally stoked! My Dad and Karen came with us so that made it fun.

Boogers had a blast! We took her to the Kiddie Land so that she could ride the rides her size and she couldn't get enough. After every ride she would point and say, "I want to go on that one!" Hardly any pausing. She was having the time of her life and it was so fun to live through her excitement. We ended up going on quite a few rides-way more than we expected-and most of them Boogers went on herself. When we were out of tickets, Boogers kept saying, "I want to go ride more rides." It was tough explaining we were all out of tickets!

This car ride was so fun because it "drifted" you around the corners. The kids were loving it!

In one of the barns they had a place to hold baby chicks

This is Boogers reading her "scriptures". The Gideons gave her one of their Bibles and she was in heaven. This kid loves books with all the fiber of her being and to have her very own orange Bible was pure heaven for her. She has been carrying this around all week and sleeping with it. She loves to just turn the pages and pretend she's reading.

The Goliath Slide. Boogers went on this herself. I was scared for her but she had a good time!

A few more ride pictures and of course the obligatory family picture

We ended up staying for a few of Weird Al's songs, but Boogers-and us for that matter-was so tired that we just took off for home. All in all fun day at the fair!

03 July 2008

Our Lives, Our Fortunes, Our Sacred Honor

This is the "official" unabridged version of the famous speech given by Rush Limbaugh's father. It was obtained from the Rush Limbaugh website.

I posted this last 4th of July, but thought it fitting again. Hope you enjoy a little history today.

It was a glorious morning. The sun was shining and the wind was from the southeast. Up especially early, a tall bony, redheaded young Virginian found time to buy a new thermometer, for which he paid three pounds, fifteen shillings. He also bought gloves for Martha, his wife, who has ill at home.

Thomas Jefferson arrived early at the statehouse. The temperature was 72.5 degrees and the horseflies weren't nearly so bad at that hour. It was a lovely room, very large, with gleaming white walls. The chairs were comfortable. Facing the single door were two brass fireplaces, but they would not be used today.

The moment the door was shut, and it was always kept locked, the room became an oven. The tall windows were shut, so that loud quarreling voices could not be heard by passersby. Small openings atop the windows allowed a slight stir of air, and also a large number of horseflies. Jefferson records that "the horseflies were dexterous in finding necks, and the silk of stocking was nothing to them." All discussion was punctuated by the slap of hands on necks.

On the wall at the back, facing the President's desk, was a panoply-consisting of a drum, swords, and banners seized from Fort Ticonderoga the previous year. Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold had captured the place, shouting that they were taking it "in the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress!"

Now Congress got to work, promptly taking up an emergency measure about which there was discussion but no dissention. "Resolved: That an application be made to the Committee of Safety of Pennsylvania for a supply of flints for the troops at New York."

Then Congress transformed itself into a committee of the whole. The Declaration of Independence was read aloud once more, and debate resumed. Though Jefferson was the best writer of all of them, he had been somewhat verbose. Congress hacked the excess away. They did a good job, as a side-by-side comparison of the rough draft and the final text shows. They cut the phrase "by a self-assumed power." "Climb" was replaced by "must read," then "must" was eliminated, then the whole sentence, and soon the whole paragraph was cut. Jefferson groaned as they continued what he later called "their depredations." "Inherent and inalienable rights" came out "certain unalienable rights," and to this day no one knows who suggested the elegant change.

A total of 86 alterations were made. Almost 500 words were eliminated, leaving 1,337. At last, after three days of wrangling, the document was put to a vote.

Here in this hall Patrick Henry had once thundered: " I am no longer a Virginian, Sir, but an American." But today the loud, sometimes bitter argument stilled, and without fanfare the vote was taken from north to south by colonies, as was the custom. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted.

There were no trumpets blown. No one stood on his chair and cheered. The afternoon was waning and Congress had no thought of delaying the full calendar of routine business on its hands. For several hours they worked on many other problems before adjourning for the day.

Much To Lose

What kind of men were the 56 signers who adopted the Declaration of Independence and who, by their signing, committed an act of treason against the crown? To each of you the names Franklin, Adams, Hancock, and Jefferson are almost as familiar as household words. Most of us, however, know nothing of the other signers. Who were they? What happened to them?

I imagine that many of you are somewhat surprised at the names not there: George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Patrick Henry. All were elsewhere.

Ben Franklin was the only really old man. Eighteen were under 40; three were in their 20s. Of the 56 almost half -24- were judges and lawyers. Eleven were merchants, 9 were landowners and farmers, and the remaining 12 were doctors, ministers, and politicians.

With only a few exceptions, such as Samuel Adams of Massachusetts, these were men of substantial property. All but two had families. The vast majority were men of education and standing in their communities. They had economic security as few men had in the 18th century.

Each had more to lose from revolution than he had to gain by it. John Hancock, one of the richest men in America, already had a price of 500 pounds on his head. He signed in enormous letters so "that his Majesty could now read his name without glasses and could now double the reward." Ben Franklin wryly noted: "Indeed we must all hang together, otherwise we shall most assuredly hang separately." Fat Benjamin Harrison of Virginia told tiny Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts: "With me it will all be over in a minute, but you, you will be dancing on air an hour after I am gone.

These men knew what they risked. The penalty for treason was death by hanging. And remember: a great British fleet was already at anchor in New York Harbor.

They were sober men. There were no dreamy-eyed intellectuals or draft card burners here. They were far from hot-eyed fanatics, yammering for an explosion. They simply asked for the status quo. It was change they resisted. It was equality with the mother country they desired. It was taxation with representation they sought. They were all conservatives, yet they rebelled.

It was principle, not property, that had brought these men to Philadelphia. Two of them became presidents of the United States. Seven of them became state governors. One died in office as vice president of the United States. Several would go on to be U.S. Senators. One, the richest man in America, in 1828 founded the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. One, a delegate from Philadelphia, was the only real poet, musician and philosopher of the signers (it was he, Francis Hopkinson – not Betsy Ross – who designed the United States flag).

Richard Henry Lee, a delegate from Virginia, had introduced the resolution to adopt the Declaration of Independence in June of 1776. He was prophetic in his concluding remarks:
"Why then sir, why do we longer delay? Why still deliberate? Let this happy day give birth to an American Republic. Let her arise not to devastate and to conquer but to reestablish the reign of peace and law. The eyes of Europe are fixed upon us. She demands of us a living example of freedom that may exhibit a contrast in the felicity of the citizen to the ever increasing tyranny which desolates her polluted shores. She invites us to prepare an asylum where the unhappy may find solace, and the persecuted repost. If we are not this day wanting in our duty, the names of the American Legislatures of 1776 will be placed by posterity at the side of all of those whose memory has been and ever will be dear to virtuous men and good citizens."

Though the resolution was formally adopted July 4, it was not until July 8 that two of the states authorized their delegates to sign, and it was not until August 2 that the signers met at Philadelphia to actually put their names to the Declaration.

William Ellery, delegate from Rhode Island, was curious to see the signers' faces as they committed this supreme act of personal courage. He saw some men sign quickly, "but in no face was he able to discern real fear." Stephan Hopkins, Ellery's colleague from Rhode Island, was a man past 60. As he signed with a shaking pen, he declared: "My hand trembles, but my heart does not."
Most glorious service

Even before the list was published, the British marked down every member of Congress suspected of having put his name to treason. All of them became the objects of vicious manhunts. Some were taken. Some, like Jefferson, had narrow escapes. All who had property or families near British strongholds suffered.

**Francis Lewis, New York delegate saw his home plundered and his estates in what is now Harlem, completely destroyed by British soldiers. Mrs. Lewis was captured and treated with great brutality. Though she was later exchanged for two British prisoners though the efforts of Congress she died from the effects of her abuse.

**William Floyd, another New York delegate, was able to escape with his wife and children across Long Island Sound to Connecticut, where they lived as refugees without income for seven years. When they came home they found a devastated ruin.

**Philips Livingstone had all his great holdings in New York confiscated and his family driven out of their home. Livingstone died in 1778 still working in Congress for the cause.

**Louis Morris, the fourth New York delegate, saw all his timber, crops, and livestock taken. For seven years he was barred from his home and family.

**John Hart of Trenton, New Jersey, risked his life to return home to see his dying wife. Hessian soldiers rode after him, and he escaped in the woods. While his wife lay on her deathbed, the soldiers ruined his farm and wrecked his homestead. Hart, 65, slept in caves and woods as he was hunted across the countryside. When at long last, emaciated by hardship, he was able to sneak home, he found his wife had already been buried, and his 13 children taken away. He never saw them again. He died a broken man in 1779, without ever finding his family.

**Dr. John Witherspoon, signer, was president of the College of New Jersey, later called Princeton. The British occupied the town of Princeton, and billeted troops in the college. They trampled and burned the finest college library in the country.

**Judge Richard Stockton, another New Jersey delegate signer, had rushed back to his estate in an effort to evacuate his wife and children. The family found refuge with friends, but a Tory sympathizer betrayed them. Judge Stockton was pulled from bed in the night and brutally beaten by the arresting soldiers. Thrown into a common jail, he was deliberately starved. Congress finally arranged for Stockton's parole, but his health was ruined. The judge was released as an invalid, when he could no longer harm the British cause. He returned home to find his estate looted and did not live to see the triumph of the revolution. His family was forced to live off charity.

**Robert Morris, merchant prince of Philadelphia, delegate and signer, met Washington's appeals and pleas for money year after year. He made and raised arms and provisions which made it possible for Washington to cross the Delaware at Trenton. In the process he lost 150 ships at sea, bleeding his own fortune and credit almost dry.

**George Clymer, Pennsylvania signer, escaped with his family from their home, but their property was completely destroyed by the British in the Germantown and Brandywine campaigns.

**Dr. Benjamin Rush, also from Pennsylvania, was forced to flee to Maryland. As a heroic surgeon with the army, Rush had several narrow escapes.

**John Martin, a Tory in his views previous to the debate, lived in a strongly loyalist area of Pennsylvania. When he came out for independence, most of his neighbors and even some of his relatives ostracized him. He was a sensitive and troubled man, and many believed this action killed him. When he died in 1777, his last words to his tormentors were: "Tell them that they will live to see the hour when they shall acknowledge it [the signing] to have been the most glorious service that I have ever rendered to my country."

**William Ellery, Rhode Island delegate, saw his property and home burned to the ground.

**Thomas Lynch, Jr., South Carolina delegate, had his health broken from privation and exposures while serving as a company commander in the military. His doctors ordered him to seek a cure in the West Indies and on the voyage he and his young bride were drowned at sea.

**Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton, and Thomas Heyward, Jr., the other three South Carolina signers, were taken by the British in the siege of Charleston. They were carried as prisoners of war to St. Augustine, Florida, where they were singled out for indignities. They were exchanged at the end of the war, the British in the meantime having completely devastated their large landholdings and estates.

**Thomas Nelson, signer of Virginia, was at the front in command of the Virginia military forces with British General Charles Cornwallis in Yorktown. Fire from 70 heavy American guns began to destroy Yorktown piece by piece. Lord Cornwallis and his staff moved their headquarters into Nelson's palatial home. While American cannonballs were making a shambles of the town, the house of Governor Nelson remained untouched. Nelson turned in rage to the American gunners and asked, "Why do you spare my home?" They replied, "Sir, out of respect to you." Nelson cried, "Give me the cannon!" and fired on his magnificent home himself, smashing it to bits. But Nelson's sacrifice was not quite over. He had raised $2 million for the Revolutionary cause by pledging his own estates. When the loans came due, a newer peacetime Congress refused to honor them, and Nelson's property was forfeited. He was never reimbursed. He died, impoverished, a few years later at the age of 50.

Lives, fortunes, honor

Of those 56 who signed the Declaration of Independence, nine died of wounds or hardships during the war. Five were captured and imprisoned, in each case with brutal treatment. Several lost wives, sons or entire families. One lost his 13 children. Two wives were brutally treated. All were at one time or another the victims of manhunts and driven from their homes. Twelve signers had their homes completely burned. Seventeen lost everything they owned. Yet not one defected or went back on his pledged word. Their honor, and the nation they sacrificed so much to create is still intact.

And, finally, there is the New Jersey Signer, Abraham Clark.

He gave two sons to the officer corps in the Revolutionary Army. They were captured and sent to that infamous British prison hulk afloat in New York Harbor known as the hell ship "Jersey," where 11,000 American captives were to die. The younger Clarks were treated with a special brutality because of their father. One was put in solitary and given no food. With the end almost in sight with the war almost won, no one could have blamed Abraham Clark for acceding to the British request when they offered him his sons' lives if he would recant and come out for the King and Parliament. The utter despair in this man's heart, the anguish in his very soul, must reach out to each and one of us down through 200 years with the answer: "No."

The 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence proved by their every deed that they made no idle boast when they composed the most magnificent curtain line in history. "And for the support of this Declaration with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."
— Rush H. Limbaugh, Jr.

My friends, I know you have a copy of the Declaration of Independence somewhere around the house — in an old history book (newer ones may well omit it), an encyclopedia, or one of those artificially aged "parchments" we all got in school years ago. I suggest that each of you take the time this month to read through the text of the declaration, one of the most noble and beautiful political documents in human history.

There is no more profound sentence than this:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness?"

These are far more than mere poetic words. The underlying ideas that infuse every sentence of this treatise have sustained this nation for more than two centuries. They were forged in the crucible of great sacrifice. They are living words that spring from and satisfy the deepest cries for liberty in the human spirit.

"Sacred honor" isn't a phrase we use much these days, but every America Life is touched by the bounty of this, the Founders' legacy. It is freedom, tested by blood, and watered with tears. — Rush Limbaugh
-As published in "The Limbaugh Letter" July 1996 edition