Horn Happenings

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Location: San Antonio, Texas, United States

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Free Stuff at Vision Forum!!

Vision Forum has just announced to its affiliates an absolutely stupendous sale. For 48 hours beginning tomorrow, Black Friday, buy two items get any third item (of same or lesser value) free! This deal works for multiple combinations, so if you want to buy four items, you get two free. Wow! This is no mean sale! There's a lot of good stuff this year, so let's get shopping! Below are a couple recommendations I have for things to get.


The Princess Adelina is a story of Christian bravery in pagan Bohemia, eighth century A.D. When Adelina is whisked away from simple peasant life to queen of a blatantly pagan empire, she faces many temptations and trials, added to which are ambitious men bent on her destruction.

This inspiring story gives 21st century girls a look at life
in the 8th century. Adelina is an honorable example of courage, nobility,
perseverance, and faith in God. —Beall Phillips


This series of lectures given by William Potter, military historian, is an instructive look into twenty pivotal battles of history. Just a couple of those covered are:

Cannae — 216 B.C. — Romans vs. Carthaginians
Crécy — 1346 — England vs. France
Waterloo — 1815 — England vs. France
Britain — 1940 — England vs. Germany


The Monstrous Regiment of Women was directed by Colin Gunn, a Christian Scottish filmmaker, and won the Best of Festival Award for the 2007 San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival. A thoughtful insight into the modern feminist movement, the film also explores the harmfulness of the Planned Parenthood organization, and how our generation is being affected.


Vision Forum has entered the techno-gadget world with pre-loaded iPod® Nano's. Instead of cracked and missing Cd's, just buy an iPod® ! Easy to use, already programmed with five albums of the Jonathan Park Creation Drama Series, this is a great gift idea, for a reasonable price.


Here comes the tank! Heavy-duty wheels allow this amphibious vehicle to travel on all hard surfaces such as grass, carpet, and gravel. Or head for the pool as the wheels fold in and enable propellers to speed it away. Watch out army men as air soft pellets skim the water! A one-of-a-kind treasure!

Grandfather's Classic Toys

Grandfather's Classic Toys is a little-publicized portion of the Vision Forum store. They have vintage toys such as scooters, rocking horses, and this pedal fire engine. Seeing this old-fashioned new product brought back memories for my mom, who had one just like this when she was young. It's a great Christmas gift for any little wanna-be firefighter.

Enjoy the sale!


Monday, November 24, 2008

Musings On Gift-giving

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Little ones have a way of reminding us of the important things in life. A few days ago I was presented with a petite gift bag stuffed with brightly colored tissue paper. My generous friend, a young girl of 5, beamed from ear to ear and I removed the tissue paper and found her little treasure inside.

In an instant I became the proud recipient of a necklace strung with deep blue plastic beads. After hugs and thanks were exchanged, I wore the beads for the remainder of the day. Every time I fingered the string of blue plastic beads draped around my neck, I was reminded of this little girl's love and the true spirit of gift-giving.

As the holiday season approaches, my mind often turns to picking out that perfect present for family and friends. While there is nothing wrong with searching for that special something, my blue beads remind me that gifts are to be symbols of our love and friendship. Gifts are meaningful because of what they represent.

Now, I adore my blue beads and cherish them as a precious possession, but honestly, if I passed them in a store I probably would resist the temptation to buy them. :) The true value of this gift in not found in its monetary worth, but in the love-inspired generosity of a little girl. To me, every bead feels wrapped in love like the way my little friend often flings her arms around my neck in a mighty embrace. Without that, this necklace would not be so prized.

As I enter this time of planning and scheming over gifts to purchase for loved ones, this is a lesson I do not wish to forget: It matters little if the gift is purchased at Brook's Brothers or the dollar store, its true value is the love and friendship behind the symbolic token.

And that is why I love my new blue beads.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Search and Win!

Search & Win

A few days ago we found out about a great new site from MoneySavingMom.com. It's called Swagbucks, and it incorporates the Google and Ask.com search engines into a search that you can earn free stuff from! This is how it works:

You sign up on the website, all they need is a name and email address, no credit card or anything like that, and you get credited with three "swagbucks". Then, you can download a toolbar and type your searches in, just like google.

As you search for whatever-you-normally-search for, you get credited with more swagbucks, which can be redeemed in their store for all kinds of things, such as gift cards, etc. They also participate with a large number of stores in giving you one "swagbuck" for every five dollars you spend at the store.

The best part about the site is the referral part (what I'm doing right now!). When a friend clicks through your special referral link, you get a dollar for every dollar they earn! So, go ahead, check it out, and, yes, you can go through our referral link. Just click right here.


Thursday, November 13, 2008


What is a pseudonym, and why is it used? Is it proper to use a pseudonym? These are some questions which I'd like to consider in this post, as I've been thinking about the issue a bit. I'm not an expert, and I don't understand it all, but I'd like to give my opinions upon the subject.

According to the dictionary, pseudonym means

a fictitious name used by an author to conceal his or her identity; pen name.

Why are pen names used? Throughout the years, pen names have been used in many different cases, for many different reasons. Usually they were to conceal the identity of the author, protecting him from possible harm, while enabling him to express his views. In American history, pseudonyms were extensively used by newspaper writers before, during, and after the Revolution. The authors of The Federalist Papers, a voluminous series of newspaper articles eventually published in book form, were written under the pen name Publius. They were actually written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay.

In that time period, most pseudonyms were of two aspects. One, a name denoting the general interest of the author, such as Publius, and most often of Latin or Greek descent. Second, a generalized author such as Letters from a Pennsylvania Farmer.

Pen names have also been used to popularize the author's work. When the writer of Silas Marner, a female, decided that the book would have better success if it appeared to be written by a man, she took the pen name George Elliott. The work turned out to be a great seller, although she had to deal with frauds who said they were the real George Elliott.

So, is using a pseudonym the right way to go? Well, let's look at the advantages and disadvantages of a pen name. Most notably, there can be no verification of the author's authenticity, and if he uses improper subjects, no correction can be given him. Pen names can also cause great mischief when a work is incorrectly assigned to another who had no hand in the writing. This can easily happen, and can cause great problems between friends.

Another disadvantage is that of general labels. Going back to Revolutionary times, a supposed "Letter from a New England Ship-maker" could actually be written by a wealthy Virginian, thus implying a set of views to one set of people different than what they believe in. The blogosphere's antonymous button has enabled many to post what they would never otherwise have done.

However, there are advantages. If a person does not want his name to be subject to public ridicule, or perhaps he could be subject to bodily harm by the opposing side, a pseudonym is a great way to publish opinions and argue the point without risking life and limb. Another example is this: say a newspaper publisher asks an employee to find a poem on a particular subject for the newspaper. Suppose that the employee then writes a poem, and submits this to his boss, attributing it to a pen name. He can then find out fully what his supervisor thinks of it, without having to worry that his boss's judgement was affected by a desire to not hurt his employee's feelings.

Although I am definitely not an expert on the matter, and don't fully understand all the facets, I would say that it can be proper to use pseudonyms as long as we are cautious about the proceeding.


Monday, November 10, 2008

The Philosophy of a True Patriot

"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study paintings, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain."

~John Adams

Sunday, November 02, 2008

"The March of Death"

The study of history is one of my favorite pastimes. I love to bury my nose in a well-written biography of influential men and women of the past or read accounts of famous battles, events and ideas that have shaped society. In short, I love history.

One of the greatest delights, privileges and challenges I have experienced these past few years is the opportunity to instruct John in the subject of history. It has been a growing experience for both of us as I seek to impart my love for the study of the past and its effect on our future, while he bears with my faltering attempts at teaching. Poor guy, he's had to be my guinea pig in many areas, but I think he'll manage to survive. At least I hope he will . . .

Recently, after studying the French and Indian War, John wrote a poem about the defeat of the British under General Braddock during the first major battle of the war. I thought I would share it with you as it gives a poetic picture of the challenges and crushing defeat of the conflict, while remembering George Washington's heroic leadership amidst the death and destruction.


The March of Death

By: John Horn

Well I was there in '55,
When Braddock took his little march,
Across the wooded mountain tops,
Into the land of forest pines.

I said good-bye to friend and foe,
When our long column wound away,
from human life, the last dark fort,
That barred the French from colonies.

And after that, I didn't think,
About the step our general took,
Or all the risks that 'bout us were,
Because all day I felled those trees.

All day, all day, we labored there,
In coats and jackets brilliant red,
As scarlet as good Rahab's thread,
With sweat a-pouring down our backs.

For us 'twas chop and chop and crash,
Another tree down o'er the road,
Another giant felled at last,
That barred us from the Frenchman foe.

And so we struggled through the wild,
And cut through it a merry path,
Of rotting trees, and rotten leaves,
And graves they too were there.

And then one day it all happened,
The day that I will ne'er forget,
The day that all of Satan's realm
Broke loose on earth in one foul storm.

The bullets cut the twigs in two,
They cut our hats from off our heads,
And cut so many a soldier too,
Like he had cut a giant tree.

The war-whoop broke from every bush,
The Frenchman's gun sent bullets close,
Our officers as well as men,
Fell to the shower of burning lead.

How did I get away from there?
From fiends holding guns?
I followed good old Washington,
Not then as old as he is now.

Who led those who still were alive,
Away from Duquesne’s cruel demons,
And back to life, to human life,
A thing which fled from many a man.

But let us think of those dear men,
Who fought for king, for human life,
And lost their own, my fellow friends,
The men who died in Braddock's march.