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Thursday, December 31, 2009

On a more personal note...

2009 has been a better year for me than 2008 was. I have been on a personal healing journey and have seen relationships restored and friendships renewed. It's taken me awhile but I've finally realized the simple message the angel (below) carries is true. True for me and true for all of us.

I'd like to say thank you to everyone who has had a positive impact on my life these past twelve months. I'm feeling more hopeful about the future than I have for a long time.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Best of 2009 Speak Up Librarian

Best Pop Art

Best Amazing Race for recaps

Luke Adams is the first deaf contestant to run the Amazing Race.
He and his mom, Margie, finished 3rd.

Best Video posted from YouTube

Best Poem

Tinnitus is
No one else ever hears. An
Inner ear
Tingling that rings
Unceasing. The
Secret soundtrack of my life.

Creative Commons License
Tinnitus is by speakuplibrarian is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

Best HOH Funny
What I heard at a golf outing: Did you know Paris Hilton is in Scotland? What was actually said: Did you know the British Open is in Scotland?

Best Photo

My 2009 Blog Mantra: "To Live Out Loud and Not Fall Silent"
I lived up to this with 188 posts throughout the year.

Speak Up Librarian Blog Visitor Stats:
January 2009 - 10,000+
December 2009 - 33,000+

Avatars Have More Fun

I hate to admit this but.... my avatar is younger looking than me, MUCH thinner, and has a fabulous wardrobe to show off her figure. She gets to pose in front of interesting backgrounds and look pretty on my blog sidebar. No dark circles, acne breakouts, bad hair days, migraine headaches or tired feet for her.

Do I sound a little jealous? Perhaps....but I've been thinking for quite awhile now that she needs to have a disclaimer posted above her, something like the message on my side view car mirrors, to let you all know that she's not a true reflection of me. If she ever saw me, I'm sure she would definitely want you to know that, heh.

Last week I saw the new film Avatar. I wasn't expecting to like it much from what I'd seen of the trailer, but it had a very good storyline and I did like it. In the movie, the Avatars are actually more like clones and are not restricted to computer generated worlds. They are free to move around in a real world environment on an alien planet. To control the Avatars, their owners lie down in coffin like pods and connect their brains up to the machines' wiring. While the Avatars are awake, they consume all of their owners' time. Once the Avatars fall asleep, their owners can experience life in their real bodies again. At one point in the movie, the main character says his life has gotten all backwards, so that the Avatar life seems real and the real life seems a dream.

Have you seen the film? What did you think of it?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Beware of Loud Toys Underneath the Christmas Tree

Originally uploaded by 1001things

Did you know that playing with loud toys poses a risk to a child's hearing? If not, here's some facts you may want to know.

  • Almost 15% of children ages 6-17 show signs of hearing loss.

  • The acoustic standard for toys adopted by the American Society for Testing and Materials is 85 db for most toys and 65 db for toys held close to the ear.

  • Not all toys currently available on store shelves are within these decibel ranges.

    The Pennsylvania Public Interest Group recently released their 24th annual report outlining toy safety guidelines for parents and citing examples of currently available toys that may pose potential safety hazards. They offer these common sense recommendations for parents when in comes to loud toys.

  • If a toy seems too loud for you, then it is probably too loud for your child.

  • You can put tape over the speakers of any toys you already own that are too loud or remove the batteries.

    Specifically, the report cites the following toys as being louder than recommended when tested by their organization.

  • Mattel Secret Saturdays Cryptid Claw

  • Playskool Kota and Pals Stompers Triceratops

  • Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Learning Phone

  • Vtech Bright Lights Phone

    The complete report entitled Trouble in Toyland can be downloaded here.
  • Sunday, December 20, 2009

    Hotels and the ADA: Information for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Travelers

    If you are traveling this holiday season and will be staying in a hotel, you may want to be aware of what services a hotel is required to provide you by law. According to the U.S. Department of Justice,

    "Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), hotels and motels must provide effective means of communications for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing to ensure that they have an equal opportunity to enjoy the goods, services, accomodations, and amenities offered."
    • TTY: A hotel must provide a TTY on request for use in guest rooms. Per the U.S. Department of Justice guidelines, a hotel needs to have a TTY at the front desk and have trained desk staff in handling TTY equipment.

    • Closed Captioning: These guidelines also specifically mention having closed captioning available for guest room televisions. But be aware that they don't specify a need for staff to be trained on accessing this equipment feature.

    • Visual alarms connected to the building's emergency alarm system: Only required to be present in a certain percentage of guest rooms. Be sure to ask for this when placing your reservation.

    • Visual notification devices for alerting deaf and hard of hearing guests to incoming telephone calls and door knocks/doorbells. Again this is required only for a certain percentage of guest rooms. Presumably they would be available in the rooms with the visual alarms, but it would be a good idea to discuss this as well when placing your reservation.

    The information in this blog post comes from the ADA Business Brief: Communicating with Guests who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing in Hotels, Motels, and Other Places of Transient Lodging which can be accessed on the web through this link. Further information on the ADA is available at the U.S. Government's ADA website.

    If you find yourself not accomodated at any hotel, you have the right to file a formal complaint following the guidelines stated here.

    Thank you to Danielle who provided me with this information so I could be a more informed and better accomodated traveler.

    Wishing all of you safe travels this holiday season!

    Saturday, December 19, 2009

    Unabated Baking

    Gingerbread Men

    I've continued baking. I was halfway through making these gingerbread cookies when I noticed I didn't have enough ginger. Oops. I made a quick run to a local shop for this vital ingredient. The cost was an outrageous $5 for a small jar of the spice. But what could I do?

    That wasn't my only baking mistake. As I mentioned in a recent post, I had planned to try out my mother's and grandmother's cinnamon roll recipe this week. Fortunately, the recipe needs to be baked in two separate batches. Here's why.... My husband and I were sampling the first batch fresh out of the oven and realizing they didn't taste quite the way mom's do. While eating my fourth bun, I wondered aloud if she uses more brown sugar. Then it hit me, I had forgotten to add the cinnamon. When my husband heard that, he pointed out to my embarassment that cinnamon would have to be a main ingredient considering the name and all. Needless to say, I made sure to add cinnamon to the second batch and they tasted closer to mom's. But hers are still the best!
    Sugar Cookies

    Last night my son and I made up some dough to use in our cookie press. It's practically an antique handed down to me from my late mother-in-law. To our disappointment the cookie press no longer works. So we rolled out the dough and cut out these sugar cookies instead. I'm planning to give these bell shaped cookies to a friend of mine who collects bells. I think she'll enjoy them. I had fun decorating them for her.

    Sugar Cookies

    These Christmas tree shaped cookies are decorated with cinnamon candies. Some of them melted during the baking process. My son and I decided those were the ones we'd eat. Mmmm.
    Tonight we plan to make chocolate covered pretzels. Yum!

    Wednesday, December 16, 2009

    Window Wednesday

    Photo of my window's reflection of our Christmas tree.
    [Taken from inside the house]

    Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    Been Busy Baking

    What's making Rusty's mouth water?
    The wonderful smells in the kitchen.
    I took a week off of work and I've been
    busy baking. Here's what I've made so far...

    White Chip Chocolate Cookies
    [recipe from Hersheys]
    We call this the reverse chocolate chip at our
    house. It's very rich, almost like a brownie.

    Pumpkin Cookies
    I had some leftover canned pumpkin from baking pumpkin
    bread and I decided to try my hand at these cookies.
    They are delicious and aromatic.

    [recipe from my trusty Better Homes and Gardens
    cookbook] These classic cookies are easy to make
    and there are no unusual ingredients to buy.

    Tomorrow I'm going to try my hand at a cinnamon bun recipe that's been handed down from my grandmother to my mother and now to me. I was surprised when I asked my mom for the recipe that she had the ingredients and directions completely in her head. She doesn't have them written down anywhere! It's a two day project which explains why I've never gotten around to making them myself. Not to mention that my mother spoils us by bringing them when she visits and regularly serving them at her house.

    Then it's on to making more traditional Christmas cookies: gingerbread men, cookie press cookies, and sugar cookie cutouts. We also like to make chocolate covered pretzels for Christmas too. Fortunately, this year my teenage son has shown a great interest in helping me bake and has been willing to help clean up afterwards. Of course he (like me) enjoys sampling the goodies. Cookies taste best hot out of the oven.

    Friday, December 11, 2009

    Photo Fun for Friday: First Snow of the Season

    Left out in the cold.

    Not an inviting seat tonight.

    Outdoor Christmas light closeup.

    Don't the Christmas tree lights look nice
    with the snow on the branches?

    One of our bushes alight in the night.

    Our Christmas tree Advent Calendar
    is getting more decorated by the day.

    Last weekend my husband got our outdoor wreaths and lights up. Tomorrow we will put up our Christmas tree and decorate it as a family. The school Christmas concert is this weekend. I've got most of my Christmas shopping and writing of Christmas cards completed. Next up - baking Christmas cookies.

    Thursday, December 10, 2009

    Beautiful Blogger Award

    Thank you Jelly for choosing me for this award. Now it's my turn to nominate 7 other bloggers for the award. The envelope please.... [sound of envelope being opened.] Leaning into the microphone [picture the stage of the Academy Awards] "My nominees for Beautiful Blogger Award are..."
    Liz A blogger buddy who I consider a friend even though we live an ocean apart. She's creative and pursuing her dream of writing a children's book. She's also the new owner of an adorable hamster named Bubbles.
    Glenice Author of beautiful poetry. She has a cochlear implant and revels in the sounds she is now able to hear.
    Deafinitely Girly Most definitely! She is a prolific and honest blogger with an amusing way of referring to her friends in her writing by pet names.
    AmyKay I hope this award might motivate you to blog more frequently. I've missed your voice in the blogosphere.
    Danielle Someone I've only connected with online recently. I'm interested to know more of your story.
    DebAnn and Kim - who were both previously nominated by Jelly but who have been such a part of my blogging journey that I couldn't overlook them.
    My final duty is to tell you 7 "interesting" things about me. Frankly, I can't think of anything, so I'm just going to write the first 7 experiences I love that come into my head:
    1) going to the beach (a warm sunny day sounds so good on this cold night)
    2) discovering a new "favorite" author - particularly one who writes series so I can gorge on book after book
    3) falling asleep on the couch while my family watches tv (can you tell I'm feeling sleepy about now?)
    4) sharing a friend's good news (it's so nice to be happy for someone else and be a part of their joy)
    5) taking a photo I can be proud of (I'm still experimenting and learning so my standards may be lower than yours)
    6) sleeping in on Saturday mornings (did I mention I'm a bit tired?)
    7) falling into the oblivion of sleep (my eyes just won't stay open any longer)
    ....zzzz.... Good night, everyone!

    Monday, December 7, 2009

    Meghan and Cheyne Win: Amazing Race Finale

    I've been thinking it over and I've concluded that Meghan and Cheyne were the ideal Amazing Race team. Not just for this season, but of all the seasons I've watched. Meghan was a strong athlete who held her own with the male contestants. Her partner Cheyne was sharp. He always seemed to figure out what needed to be done to give them the competitive edge. For example, in last night's episode, he figured out in two tries how to assist his partner in completing the task. Something that Brian and Ericka who had a substantial headstart could not emulate. Coming in last to the task of counting out $1 million in poker chips, Cheyne kept a cool head and immediately sized up what needed to be done. He and Meghan were the perfect partners, always patient and encouraging to each other. That's especially impressive as they are a dating couple. If I had the chance to speak directly to them, I would say, "Meghan, Cheyne is a keeper. If you decide to make a lifetime commitment, I wish you both all the happiness in the world. For now enjoy the money and spend it wisely."

    For those who missed the episode, despite an early lead, Brian and Ericka ran in 3rd. The brothers came in 2nd. To my disappointment there was no final challenge that required any recall of events that took place during the course of the race. I hope the producers will bring that back for future seasons.

    Monday, November 30, 2009

    Finally We Have the Final Three Teams: Amazing Race Episode 11

    At the beginning of the show an announcement was made that one of the teams had incurred a "game-changing penalty". Then the producers showed us still photos of each team during the episode to leave us wondering who did it and how it happened. That was different. And the answer is...the Globetrotters. They incurred a 4 hour penalty for not completing a Roadblock task. Basically Big Easy gave up when all the other teams had figured out the solution and he was left behind clueless. His challenge was to rearrange the letters F, N, Z, A, R to spell Franz. One of the brothers had even told him the word's first letter was F. Surely it would not have taken 4 hours to try various combinations until hitting upon the solution! I was so disappointed in Big Easy. He and Flight Time waited out the time but by the time they got to the next cluebox the other 3 teams had made it to the Pit Stop. Never, give up.

    Cheyne & Megan finished 1st and won TVs.
    Sam & Dan finished 2nd.
    Brian & Ericka to their utter amazement and relief finished 3rd.

    Who do you predict will win the million dollars? I'm staying with my early pick of Cheyne and Meghan. In that blog post I wondered what the dating couple's racing dynamic would be like when they landed in the back of the pack. Well, that never happened. They've consistently been front runners. They have also been a refreshing change from the usual dating couple who go on the race to test their relationship. I've enjoyed their sweet interaction and will be cheering them to the finish line.

    Friday, November 27, 2009

    Photo Fun for Friday: Thanksgiving Feast

    Roast Turkey

    Cranberry Jello Mold
    Apple Pie
    Pumpkin Pie

    Kids table place setting

    Tuesday, November 24, 2009

    Pumpkin Bread

    This is one of my favorite recipes my mother taught me. It's moist and delicious.

    Pumpkin Bread
    3 cups flour
    1 1/4 cups oil
    2 cups pumpkin (I use Libby's in the can)
    1 tsp baking soda
    2 cups sugar
    1 tsp salt
    3 tsp cinnamon
    1 tsp nutmeg or ginger
    4 eggs
    Mix together all ingredients and bake for 1 hour at 350. Makes 2 loaves.

    This year, I'm hosting a Thanksgiving gathering for 10 at my house. I'm looking forward to it very much so that's where I'll be putting my effort this week, cleaning and cooking. See you around the blogosphere after the holiday.

    Sunday, November 22, 2009

    It's Down to the Final 3 Teams Or Is It? Amazing Race Episode 10

    I was all excited to find out tonight which of the teams would make it to the final 3. But it didn't work out that way as it turned out to be a nonelimination leg. Nice for Brian and Ericka who came in fourth but frustrating for me as a viewer.

    Megan and Cheyne came in first winning a trip to Hawaii. The brothers came in 2nd and the Globetrotters came in 3rd. There was tension between the dating couple and the Globetrotters when Megan made an offer for the teams to work together and Cheyne ditched them soon afterwards. Hey, this late in the game, it's every team for themselves. However, Sam and Dan risked attracting some bad karma by bribing Erika and Brian's taxi's driver to take them instead of waiting for the married couple to finish their detour task.

    Overall the show wasn't too exciting tonight. The best part was watching the brothers try to navigate a kayak through a whitewater course, arguing all the way, and inevitably tipping over into the water. That was laugh out loud entertaining.

    Do you think married couple Brian and Ericka have any chance of catching up to the other teams? Will Sam and Dan pay for their dirty play?

    Saturday, November 21, 2009

    Christmas Gift Ideas for the Hard of Hearing

    Have you started your Christmas shopping yet? I have. I wanted to remind everyone that my Speak Up Librarian Shop has lots of fun items that would make a great Christmas gift for yourself, a family member, or a friend. I now have coffee mugs, water bottles, tote bags, and BBQ aprons in addition to the t-shirts and sweatshirts. I have reduced the price on all the basic style t-shirts featured in the flyer below. White t-shirts now start as low as $17.99 for styles printed on the front only and $20.99 for styles printed on the front and back. Coffee mugs in these same designs are $12.99.

    Friday, November 20, 2009

    Photo Fun for Friday: Fall Yard Cleanup

    Look what's been hiding around our yard!

    Time to get out the rake.

    My town offers leaf pickup service twice each fall
    for residents who rake their leaves to the curb.

    In the backyard, we cover the flowerbeds with leaves.

    Leafless Lila Tree - It reminds me
    of Charlie Brown's Christmas tree.

    Faded Glory

    Another surprise find - a still vibrant violet.

    Last look at lovely autumn.

    Rusty closes his eyes against the cold wind.
    Can you tell he's lost weight?

    I'll be watching the sky now for signs
    of the first snow of the season.

    Thursday, November 19, 2009

    I Heart Blogging

    This month I get to teach two library workshops on blogging. It's always fun for me to talk about this topic with those who are new to the blogging concept. I share the following words from Antonella Pavese with my audience because they resonate with me on why blogging is wonderful. [Note: the bolding is mine and doesn't appear on her website that way.]

    Typically, people get into blogging by reading blogs. Most blog readers are not bloggers, they just enjoy visiting and reading/listening/viewing content that others create. And this is great: blogs need readers. Some people, after lurking for while, start contributing to the discussion by writing comments to other people’s posts. This is even better: blogging requires participation. Some blogs becomes like coffee shops: nice places to visit and hang out, where one can listen to stories and chat with friend.

    But best of all is having your own blog, because you have the chance to create something that is yours, on which you have complete creative control, and at the same time is public. This is the true power and beauty of blogging: a blog is something you create and take care of, like a garden, and other people from all over the world can visit and enjoy. Antonella Pavese

    I love her image of a blog as a garden, don't you?

    Wednesday, November 18, 2009

    My Encounters With the Amish

    Lately I've been reading Christian fiction author Beverly Lewis' series Abram's Daughters about a Lancaster County, Pennsylvania Amish family. These entertaining stories are filled with faith and family and storylines dramatic enough to rival a soap opera. I highly recommend them to you.

    By chance, I happened across a charming children's book in my library last week about two Amish girls and a peacock called Just Plain Fancy by Patricia Polacco. I highly recommend it to you as well. You can learn more about this book and related learning activities about the Amish at the author's website.

    Where I grew up in the Midwest, encounters with the Amish were not unusual. I remember during my school days being outside at recess time and seeing horse and buggy carriages pass by with their cautionary orange triangle symbols attached at the back. Family names of Troyer, Yoder, Miller, Schlabaugh, etc were common in the area. Reading these books brought back these memories to me. They also reminded me of two humorous encounters I have had with the Amish.

    One time when I was a young girl my family went to an Amish restaurant. I was hungry and ordered a hamburger. When it was served to me, I reached out for the condiment bottle on the table and poured what I thought was ketchup onto my burger. Then I noticed the Amish waitress's surprised look. "That's apple butter, miss." Oops. I hurriedly scraped it off as my sister laughed at me.

    Several years later when I was in college and working as a substitute teller during the summers, I was assigned for a day to a bank branch frequented by the Amish. Since, the bank had trained me to ask for identification every time I cashed a check for someone I didn't know personally, when an Amish man handed me a check to cash, I automatically asked him for his driver's license. The man just stared back at me wordlessly until the light dawned on me. You don't need a driver's license for a horse and buggy! Oops - major faux pas. Fortunately the teller next to me rescued me and approved the check for cashing.

    Have you had any encounters with the Amish? My British readers may be interested to know that the Amish refer to anyone outside of their community as the "English".

    Tuesday, November 17, 2009

    Sprint WebCapTel: Have You Tried It Yet?

    I learned about Sprint's free WebCapTel service at a recent hearing loss support group meeting. As I tend to avoid telephone calls as much as possible, I was intrigued by the idea of being able to hear a caller's voice and access a captioned version of what the caller said on my PC.

    I had never tried a relay service before. Instead I've relied upon turning my telephone volume all the way up which I'm sure is not good for my ears. It's been a long time since I enjoyed a nice relaxing chat on the phone.

    The Sprint representatives at the meeting suggested trying out the service by calling someone "safe". So I started by calling my husband. I was amused when at first the captioner came back with [speaker unclear]. Yes, that's been my experience too! I felt validated. After that first "speech bump", the rest of our brief conversation went fine. There seemed to be a three second delay between the finish of what he said and the start of the captioning. Not bad.

    Then I tried calling my friend, Linda. She is someone I have missed talking to by phone. Before my hearing loss was identified, we used to have hours long conversations to the delight of the long distance companies. She admitted that she'd avoided calling me knowing how difficult it is for me now. We did pretty well using WebCapTel. Lately we've been instant messaging each other so we were used to having a delay between our replies. We got quite a few chuckles out of the captioning mistakes. The captioner prints what he/she heard and then analyzes it. If he/she comes up with a better answer, it prints those words in brackets like this: ... woman irking at the library [working].
    My third call was to my mom. We had trouble getting the timing to work for us. I think if she could have seen the captioning as it appeared on my screen, it might have gone better. When I called my sister next, I made sure to keep her informed of where the captioning was at. To her credit she made a huge effort to speak slowly and clearly and the captioning was very accurate as a result. But it seemed to me as if this was perhaps too much to ask of someone. It felt intrusive and awkward conversing this way.

    As a hard of hearing resident of Illinois, I'm eligible to receive a free captioned telephone for my home. It will caption all the outgoing calls I make. It will caption incoming calls that are directed through a relay service. Sprint also offers a $99 telephone model that will caption both incoming and outgoing calls automatically. I think that is the one I would like to eventually purchase. For now, I am going to keep using WebCapTel until my family, friends, and I are more comfortable with captioned phone service.

    What are your thoughts on WebCapTel?
    Note: This blog post has been edited since it was originally posted. A reader commented that the service works through human captioners not voice recognition software. I have edited the post to reflect that. If I had known it was a human captioning the call, I wouldn't have laughed at the captioning mistakes. My apologies.

    I've just been corrected once again by a reader. The system uses both a human captioner and voice recognition software. See the comments section for more details.

    Monday, November 16, 2009

    Don't Sweat the Small Stuff: Amazing Race Episode Nine

    At the beginning of the episode, a ferry's departure time brought all the teams back together, even Gary and Matt who had fallen way behind last week. Their Speed Bump task turned out to be possibly the easiest one ever - sitting in a sauna for five minutes! This sauna was located on an Estonian Saunabus - an interesting concept. In the US we have bookmobiles, why not mobile saunas? On second thought...Anyways, Gary and Matt enjoyed the task immensely. Lucky Matt was seated beside a gorgeous young blonde during their sauna session with a group of locals. His dad Gary socialized by talking about his Finnish heritage and sauna experiences in Minnesota.

    Meanwhile the other teams were solving a mystery at the headquarters of the Blackheads society. They had to locate a candleabra with a numbered tag which gave them a room number where they would receive a scroll. The trick was the scroll turned out to be blank. Teams quickly figured out they needed to hold the scroll up to their candle to reveal their next destination. Well all the teams except the Globetrotters. Flight Time thought the trick was to rub a crayon on the scroll to reveal the message. Pretty soon he figured out he needed to use heat instead. With their trouble on this task and their difficulty deciphering the briefcase code, I am wondering how they will cope with the final challenge that usually requires puzzle solving ability.

    When Gary and Matt finished their sauna speed bump, Matt took the task. He struggled a bit since he didn't know what a candleabra was. During the commercial break my family switched to a different channel and we missed seeing how he figured that one out. Hopefully by recognizing the word candle inside of candleabra.

    At the Detour teams had a choice of playing mud volleyball or using a slingshot to hit a target. Megan and Cheyne, the Globetrotters, and the brothers all chose mud volleyball. Brian and Ericka were forced to choose the slingshots when no more volleyball courts were available. Matt and Gary also chose target shooting when they arrived later.

    On the way to the Pit Stop there was a scuffle between the brothers Sam and Dan and the Globetrotters. The bad feeling between the teams seems to have escalated. Their encounter reminded me of Jen and Luke's clashes last season.

    Final standings
    1st place: Cheyne and Megan
    2nd place: Sam and Dan
    3rd place: Flight Time and Big Easy (Globetrotters)
    4th place: Brian and Ericka

    Sadly, father/son team Gary and Matt were eliminated. I will miss seeing them as they were one of my favorite teams.

    Next week's elimination will lead to the final three teams. Predictions, anyone?

    Friday, November 13, 2009

    Photo Fun for Friday: Butterfly Garden

    In this photo you can see the blur of this
    butterfly's wings in motion. Butterflies
    are tricky subjects to photograph.

    Watch your step!

    I visited this butterfly garden with the specific purpose of obtaining the answer to the question, "Are butterflies deaf?" I have seen websites online that say they are and some that say they aren't, but I haven't gotten a definitive word from my web research. Unfortunately, I was unable to get the answer from the staff at the butterfly exhibit either. I was promised my question would be referred to an expert but I never received any reply to my query even after I sent followup emails. At any rate with your indulgence, I'd like to share my own "butterfly logic".
    If butterflies are deaf and butterflies are beautiful, then deaf can be beautiful!