June 28, 2006

Happy 15th Simon!

June 14, 2006 a very special young man in our household turned fifteen years old. Your hard working, enthusiastic attitude, and determination are an example and blessing to all of us, Simon.

We love you!

June 23, 2006

"You're Only As Old As You Feel"

A very special birthday arrived June 4, 2006 when Great-Grandma Lucille McAllister turned 90 years old! That day was a special one as most of my Dad's family gathered together at our home to celebrate 90 years of love. Grandma Lucille is Dad's grandma, my great-grandma, and Jaelynn's great-great-grandma! She has left us a legacy of love that has been passed down through generations. Proving the quote in the title above to be true, she moves about freely without the use of a cane, walker, or wheelchair. Grandma is a spirited woman with a kind word and smile for everyone . . . except when you try to gas up her car for her without using her money. Dad learned his lesson on that one! :-)

Some of my favorite things are Grandma's tight, warm hugs. Her smile and sparkling eye shine with a love that time will never dim.

Throughout the day, Grandma was serenaded with numerous songs. Some causing giggles, others tears. A poem was read, a speech was given, all to honor this beloved and remarkable woman. The matriarch of the Parish Clan!

June 19, 2006

Fathers Day

To my wonderful Father~ Thank-you for laying down your life for us, for teaching us about the Father of all, our Lord and Saviour. Thank-you for your example in Godly manhood and fatherhood. The impact of your sacrifice reaches farther than you'll ever know.

WE LOVE YOU DAD!!!!!!!!!!

Loving us, and spiritually leading us,

We have enjoyed many special times!

Passing on words of wisdom from 23 years of wedded life,

Teaching us how to work,

And how to play!

June 12, 2006

Intermittent Explosive Disorder II

As a follow up to Sally's post below giving the link to the article "'Road rage' gets a medical diagnosis" http://msnbc.msn.com/id/13152708/from/ET/, I would like to make some observations about what this article presents.

First, note that a single study is used to establish a basis for taking a common occurence and making it a full-blown mental illness. Licensed professionals are then quoted to show that this single study is being used to support the latest up-to-the-minute diagnoses. Then, by extrapolation, this single study is used to assert that as many as 16 million Americans are affected by this mental illness. This is astounding.

Dr. Emil Coccaro, a study co-author, is quoted as saying that this "disorder" is more than just "bad behaviour", but it includes biology and cognitive science. Wow, what had we missed before? If we cloak our problems of living with scientific terms, we can say that adrenaline rushes and thoughts flying back and forth across the synaspes of our brains are really mental illnesses.

When a person goes to a basketball game, sees an exciting play, leaps off his seat and yells out loud...what is happening? Well...biology and cognitive science is what is happening. It is well known that during such excitement, brain chemicals are present that are not normally there in more sedate settings. But the question is, did the chemicals cause the excitement, or did the excitement cause the chemicals?

It is okay to yell at a tense basketball game, but not to yell in a tense traffic situation. The potential of danger makes one a mental illness and the other a part of normal life. Is it not the same chemical reaction?

Dr. Coccaro makes the assertion that the disorder involves "...inadequate production or functioning of serotonin...." How is it that such an assertion can be made from a survey that is reported to be a "face-to-face survey...[using] diagnostic questionnaires...." How is it that a cause and affect relationship can be established between brain chemicals and behavior based on subjective answers to a subjective questionnaire and not based on objective scientific testing of the chemical / behavior process?

Hmmm...perhaps the basketball game involves adequate production or functioning of serotonin and the traffic situation does not. Take your pill for traffic, but not for basketball games.

Admittedly, temper outbursts that are way out of proportion to the situtation are not a good thing and are a common occurence. And I would suggest that they are much more common than this article suggests. Let us dispense with statistical analysis and make a giant leap, using common sense and common observation and boldy assert that every living human being has had such outbursts at some time in life...at least during those first months and years of life. Thank God for parents who promptly meet those outbursts with loving discipline.

But notice that such infantile outbursts are not included in the study and the more juvenile type are mentioned as the onset of this dreaded mental affliction. That provides more interesting rabbit trails to investigate...but also allows the entrance of more body chemicals as a causation - hormones.

Think of it...face to face surveys...people talking to people. Both the questioners and and questionees affected by honesty, morality, pride, depression, happiness, inattentiveness, poor memory, indigestion, full stomach after lunch, apathy, enthusiasm, etc., ad infinitum. And here we are, relying on memory, in the middle of this sea of human subjectivity, to establish frequency of occurence and extent of property damage.

I'm afraid that I don't remember how much it cost to replace the bedroom window that I broke when I threw my baseball mitt at my older brother. But I do remember that he ducked, and I had poor aim, and that neither I nor my parents had the money to replace the glass. I learned the hard way that throwing things was not a good way to go.

And then we read that the existence of such a disorder is actually breaking news to mental health specialists. What??? Where have they been all these years?

How many attacks does it take to determine that a person has this mental illness? Do the same cognitive and biological processes take place in all explosive anger situations? Or is there a class of afflicted which experience a different and truly explosion which could be labeled as a mental illness?

And why is it that we need licensed professionals to tell us that inappropriate outbursts of anger have a "profound and ongoing impact on a person's life"? When have we not known that?

We get to the real heart of the matter when we read that the problem is "treated" with a combination of antidepressants and behavior therapy. Of course, this is why the words "biology" and "cognitive science" were used...they establish the foundation for the "treatment". Yes, drugs to mask (not cure) the emotions, and behavior therapy to address the...well...bad behavior. But wait a minute, that is the very same treatment given for depression! What is going on?

Psychologist Jennifer Hartstein is quoted as saying that "many people are not aware of the disorder." This is ludicrous. What she really means is that people are not aware that the psychological industry has slipped another one into the bag, making yet another category of helpless sufferers, assuring itself of additional patients on which to practice, sucking in insurance payments, and prescribing yet more antidepressants.

It is significant that every one of the sins listed in the New Testament is now classified as some kind of mental illness, disease, disorder, etc., in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fourth Edition (DSM - IV), the current edition of the catalog of psychological disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association. This manual is compiled by consensus voting, meaning that if the majority of association members VOTE to make some behavior a mental illness, it goes into the book. So much for the rigorous and critical scientific examination of proposed theories which is the foundation for all good medical practice and scientific understanding. So much for protection from charlatans and quacks. So much for the real science.

A few years ago, I was startled to read, from a highly respected psychiatrist, about the reality of these psychological pronouncements. He said that most of today's mental illness are not diseases at all and are diagnosed only by subjective lists of symptoms. These symptoms are grouped into packages in order to fit the diagnostic manual, even though these groupings have no scientific foundation or validity. So in effect, these things have no known cause, no predictable course of illness, no specific and reliable treatment, and no reliable response to treatment. Their diagnoses by therapists is not based on blood chemistry, scientific testing, or any objective observation. Diagnosis is strictly based on the subjective judgment of a "trained" individual applying "experience" in the use of arbitrarily composed lists of symptoms.

A few years ago the newspaper recorded that the US Congress was debating whether to allow full Medicare coverage for every disorder listed in the DSM - IV or to continue limited coverage (limited to the most serious). The article listed jet lag, caffeine addiction, and religious problems among the "diseases" which might now be funded by Medicare (by default, this would extend to many insurance programs). It concerns me that you and I are considered mentally ill by these professionals because they would say that we have "religious problems". Are jet lag and caffeine addiction really mental illnesses? The extent to which psychological thinking has enveloped our culture and even percolated among us is astounding.

Scott Parish

June 09, 2006


Warning to all ladies who are visiting the Parish Ranch!!!

If, when you are visiting, you happen to make biscuits, the Dough Snatcher may appear. Do not be alarmed and resist the urge to scream. The best defense is keep watchful eyes on your dough at all times. These pictures were caught by a hidden camera.

The Dough Snatcher uses many disguises, so beware.

June 06, 2006

Oh My . . .

Dad read this at the dinner table tonight. Check it out!


Is this really the world we live in?

June 01, 2006

"We've Found Gold!"

If you are a resident of California, the history of the Great Gold Rush is of great importance,and will at some time in your life be drilled into your brain. :-) Consequently, you'll find yourself visiting the famed Columbia State Park, which is an old Gold Mining town, walking in the little candy shop, the one with the little jingly bell on the door, panning for gold (or in our case, watching others pan for gold) and smelling the musky scent of tools, cabins, and equipment that are centuries old. The opportunity for the Parish Family to do just that arrived a few weeks ago.

Because of some classes in Sacramento that my Uncle Scott was taking, his wife, Aunt Cindy and family, Heidi (16), Frank,(13) Miranda, (9) and Emily,(7) from Bend, Oregon decided to come along and do some sight/ family seeing. We were able to stay in a condo all together in the tiny town of Angels Camp. Somewhere I definitely want to go again! The quaint shops downtime begged you to step in, and I'd gladly go back to oblige them if I ever have the opportunity!

The days we spent to together there in Angels Camp were few, so visiting was taking place almost non-stop. Of course, we spent much time sightseeing as well. The older I get, the more I understand the reason why 'older people' (which is anyone above your age when you're eight years old.) spend so much time enjoying each sight. I used to get so impatient to move on, but now I find that I'm the one others are impatient at! Sometimes gardens and locations are simply too beautiful to rush through. They demand a wandering gait . . . a meander that allows you to take in all the sensory details.

Okay, okay, I can hear you sighing "There she goes again!!!" so on to the most important part of a post. Pictures! :-)

Here's Simon, checkin' out the condo. It was a fun experience for us; staying in what felt like a house inside, and outside, like a hotel with the pool, recreation room, etc.

The below photos were taken when we visited the beautiful garden paradise of Ironstone Vinyards. We originally planned to go here because of their 'gold mining' museum and beautiful gardens, but we ended up taking a tour of the winery itself! This expansive estate hosts up to 75 weddings a year . . . which is a testamony to their exquisite gardens.

Here we are posing with a miner. He was quite the character! ;-)

This piano, in the wine-tasting room (No, we didn't taste any! ;-) was more than a century old! I wonder what stories it could tell if it could talk.

Above is an enormous gold piece that weighed 44 pounds! It was found recently, in 1992. Anyone up for some mining??? ;-)

Our tour was quite fascinating! It did smell a little sour though. ;-)

~Columbia State Park~ We . . .

Visited the candle dipping shop,

Rode in the car quite a bit,
Visited the Merchants,

And of course, the candy shop!

Last, but NOT least, we hiked down to an AMAZING natural bridge! It was quite wide and mossy in the front, with water dripping down off it. As you waded deeper in, the cavern narrowed into a tall, narrow cave, with amazing rock formations inside. The water was icy, but we were able to swim all the way through the cave and out the other side where the stream flowed in.

God's handiwork is incredible!

Here is Mama' enjoying herself!