Day After Thanksgiving

The day after Thanksgiving or Black Friday is popular for the shopping gobble that drives many shoppers into fuzziness. The mad rush to the door busters in the wee hours may or may not give a good deal to customers but sends the businesses from red to black.

This year businesses and retailers decided to offer sales on thanksgiving night itself. Stores opening at 9pm and 10pm kept shoppers running around for deals and bargains. Further, the stores planned their timings such that the shoppers could line up at the stores one after other.

Kmart and Walgreens opened stores on Thanksgiving itself. Walmart and Toys r us opened at 10 pm and 9 pm. Next, Best Buy, Kohls, and Target opened their stores at midnight. The deals and long queues made the shoppers spend night in these stores itself. Last, JCPenney, Sears, Gamestop and other retailers open at 4 am in the morning so that the shoppers could continue shopping. (phew…)

The shoppers were confused and got in to the trap and spent heavily on Black Friday. Some of the door busters on Electronics such as televisions and Xbox were good in deed. Toys and basic clothing were on sale for considerable difference. Many new board games and kitchen gadgets were on sale offering mail in rebates.  Price matching and comparing continued before and after door busters where shoppers could buy online.

Mostly customers end up buying beyond their shopping lists and Christmas shopping. People who were jobless or about to lose their jobs did not even refrain from shopping. The credit cards and some websites got down due to the sudden surge and could not operate.

Finally, shoppers end with huge debts and retailers in huge profits. The returns and exchanges were expected as customers want to get best out of the deals. No wonder the sales this year have surpassed last year’s. 🙂

John Deere Pavillion

The famous attraction in Moline has changed its layout to set up its ‘can do’ look. Visit John Deere Pavillion to see the sculpture made with 320,000 food cans!

John Deere Pavillion launched its latest tractor S690 by creating a sculpture of food cans. Around 320,000 food cans were used this morning. 10,000 bags of rice and pasta were used in addition to the cans. The sculpture weighs around 170 tons and is 80 feet wide and17 feet height.

An architecture firm from Chicago designed and supervised the sculpture. The colors of the cans were chosen and arranged in order to represent the natural colors.

The sculpture is free for public viewing until December 11. Later, the the food will be donated to Riverbend foodbank. It seems that this donated food can serve 150 families for an year! Further, there is a talk about Guiness world record. Let’s wait and see.

John Deere must be appreciated for all the support they offer to the community. 🙂

Annual Holiday Events

Do not miss the annual holiday parade, festival of trees, and lighting on the commons this weekend. Quad city is gearing up for the holiday season with the annual events. Before the Thanksgiving celebration and Black Friday shopping, it is time for the annual celebrations.

  1. Holiday Parade – The parade in Davenport will  feature local businesses and organizations with colorful platoons. Helium balloons, dance shows will entertain the local people in downtown Davenport at 11 am.
  2. Festival of Trees – Festival of trees will feature different Christmas trees decorated and fun events for all ages.
  3. Lighting on the Commons – The annual lighting on the commons at the John Deere Pavilion will feature festivities, wagon rides, cookies, hot chocolate, music, and of course fire works. The event is from 3.30 pm to 8pm and is free to general public.

As Thanksgiving approaches businesses are attracting shoppers with numerous discounts and coupons even before Black Friday. To avoid long queues most stores are offering online sales during the special timings.

The annual events in Quad cities will kickoff the holiday season despite the weakening economy. 🙂




Gifted Child

Every parent feels that their child is exceptional and gifted. There is no other star in the world than your own child. But, gifted children have a different kinds of capabilities and requirements which must be identified and hence can enhance the child’s learning and performance.

In the highly competitive world, is it just enough if your child gets good grades, or do you think they have to work hard to shine and exceed expectations in the standardized tests and teacher expectations. It is easier said than done. How are the gifted children identified and what are the parameters.

The Elementary and Secondary Education Act defines a gifted child as – ” Students, children, or youth who give evidence of high achievement capability in areas such as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services and activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities”.


Here are some of the characteristics of gifted children:

  1. Ability to read at an early age and develop independent learning
  2. Asking why and how rather than taking granted
  3. Having large vocabulary and expression of the ideas
  4. High energy levels in academics
  5. Exceptional skill in music, art, sports, or any other activity
  6. Extremely curious about objects and topics
  7. Breaking complex material and systematic analysis
  8. Elaborate thinking and thrive on problem solving
  9. Handle tasks in efficient manner
  10. Understand their own abilities and capabilities
The National Association For Gifted Children (NAGC) defines gifted children as -“Gifted individuals are those who demonstrate outstanding levels of aptitude (defined as an exceptional ability to reason and learn) or competence (documented performance or achievement in top 10% or rarer) in one or more domains.  Domains include any structured area of activity with its own symbol system ( mathematics, music, language) and/or set of sensorimotor skills ( painting, dance, sports).”

Schools use standardized testing to determine the gifted children apart from classroom assessment. Students scoring 90 percentile in the tests or exceeds expectations in the state wide or nation wide tests. NUMATS is also used to determine students with exceptional abilities and achievements.


Once the gifted child is identified, the child must be treated with extra care and special attention. They my feel bored easily in class rooms if they are not challenged accordingly. They may also feel left out and are vulnerable. Here are some strategies that can be used with gifted children:

  1. Challenge them to achieve more
  2. Let them know that it is ok to perform above standards
  3. Put them in to special programs which have curriculum prepared to suit them
  4. Promote positive environment and encourage learning
  5. Set up high standards and appropriate coaching so they can achieve the goals

Parents and teachers can work with the gifted children and challenge their minds for a better performance. Appropriate training and counselling is required to make them successful. Underachievement is also a common trend in gifted children due to lack of proper identification and training.

Note that the government does not provide any additional funding for the public schools to nurture the gifted children. Schools formulate funds to take care of the special programs.

Is your child gifted? What steps have you taken to meet your child’s learning demands.

Add the Magic

Feel stagnant and neglected in a relationship. Not getting much attention from life partner. A common feeling among busy couples and increasingly cluttered life styles. Add little magic and spruce up the relationship to enjoy and have more fun.

With busy life and work schedules, many couples do not appreciate the better half in their lives. The silent supporter and secret admirer can be neglected and left out in some cases. Expression of love does not harm and will not let you down after all the time you have spent together in the life.

Ego and misunderstandings dominate the underlying passion and result in conflicts many a times. Every couple have their own way of getting back to normalcy.  Sometimes even subtle hints would not work and explicit expression might be necessary. Here are the top ten ways to rekindle the life:

  1. Say what is on your mind rather than indicating
  2. View the partner as you were during the initial years
  3. Forget all the problems and think about pleasant times spent
  4. Plan outings and get together with family and friends
  5. Movie or other public events may reduce the tension
  6. Nice words and being respectful always helps
  7. Gifting on important occasions demonstrates affection
  8. Being specific on your expectations might clear out some air
  9. Positive talk and behavior are important in all circumstances
  10. Be nice and show respect however lenient your partner is
As family grows and responsibilities increase, couples tend to misjudge the partner. Ego and misunderstanding can ruin any relationship. It is crucial to get back to the basic rules and expressing. Finally, it is you who can help you and responsible for having a good life. 🙂

Vizio Tablet

The eight inch tablet from Vizio has good display and widgets but is limited in audio and browsing capabilities. The WiFi tablet costs around $200 and has all the basic requirements of a tablet with many android apps.

Here are the good aspects of VTAB1008:

  1. 8 inch LED LCD display with capacitative touch buttons and screen resolution of 1024×768
  2. Front facing camera for chatting and taking pictures
  3. Inbuilt television remote and bluetooth
  4. 32GB maximum storage with 4GB built in storage
  5. Can be connected to a TV, headset, SD Card, and USB
  6. Weighs 1.5 pounds
  7. Battery life up to 10hours
  8. Bottom menu bar

Here are the not so good aspects I observed:

  1. Heavy and bulky appearance
  2. No horizontal panning
  3. Maximum volume is low
  4. Sensitive buttons get pressed unnecessarily
  5. Browser closes abruptly
  6. Camera is not good for pictures
  7. Web browsing is not that comfortable
With affordable cost, the Vizio tablet provides basic requirements of a portable device. It is a good choice for starters. You need to download additional apps to reduce the lag. 🙂