Monday, February 9, 2009

A whiff of Spring!

What a weekend! The sun was out. The mercury climbed. It was WARM - well, we at least hit the 50s on Saturday and the 60s on Sunday! It was rejuvenating. I know winter's not over but it was a fantastic break for most of us.

Those weeks and weeks of cold had bred a little distrust. When we woke to comfortable weather on Saturday we were a little leery. The phrase, "this must be a trick," lurked in our minds. We did the usual winter thing and went to the movies. (Okay, we are motivated by cash flow to some extent. Weekend morning movies in our neighborhood are really cheap so we saw the 10 a.m. showing.) When we emerged from the theater at noon, the sun was shining. People were out and smiling. It felt good. Saturday turned out to be a great day!

Sunday was even brighter, considerably warmer and really invigorating. We got out and walked in the sunshine. There were no splotches of ice to worry about. We had company in the evening and everyone was happy and in a great mood. I think we all needed this little shot of Spring!!

Movie Review: Taken

The movie choice this week was "Taken" starring Liam Neeson as a former government (CIA-type spy) "preventer." You're left to your own definition of what a "preventer" keeps from occurring but it appears he and his colleagues knew of worldwide threats and terrors that the masses are quietly protected from. He is torn between keeping his most prized possession, his teen-aged daughter, safe where he can see her or being the benevolent parent she wants who allows her to see the world on her terms. When, against his better judgment, he goes with the latter he audibly witnesses her kidnapping via a transatlantic phone call and his almost super-hero skills kick in to save his little girl. The action is riveting and fast moving. The premise of two young pretty girls traveling alone in a foreign country with limited language skills being kidnapped by powerful men who wish to sell them to the highest bidder is believable. It does happen in part of today's real world. Most of us can identify with Neeson's parental need to "save his baby at all costs." We can only wish we would have his "specialized skills" should such a situation ever arise in our lives. This one gets a full five stars.


As expected, there is constant news coming in concerning the CPSIA. As previously announced, the CPSC has issued a 1-year stay regarding enforcement of some portions of the new law. While products must meet the new lead and phthalate levels as of tomorrow, the certification and 3rd party testing requirements have been delayed. Basically, we can only market children's merchandise that we know or can reasonably deduce meet those standards. In my personal case, I believe my products are safe as they are made using only previously tested components. I have not introduced any unsafe or non-tested materials in the act of embellishing these commercially manufactured and marketed garments. Those garments had to be tested by that manufacturer before being sold to me on the retail market. The paints I use have been tested by their manufacturer. At this time, I will continue to produce and market the safe, quality merchandise I am known for.

On Friday, the Commission issued a lengthy press release which further clarified a number of items that they are now deeming "SAFE" as those products are extremely unlikely to contain any hazardous levels of either lead or phthalates. There will be further clarifications forthcoming as more products and components are reviewed and analyzed. There was a bill introduced in Congress last week suggesting revisions to the law as passed this past year. That bill has been referred to Committee for review at this time. One of the suggested revisions pertains to the use of previously tested and certified components.

I will try to keep my readers updated as information becomes available. I am also trying to only convey information issued directly by the CPSC or Congress so as to avoid all of the confusion and speculation circulating at this time.

So, until next time, enjoy the sunshine and live creatively.

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