December 30, 2009

Photo Contest

There are some awesome photos in this article.

This is just one of the amazing photographs in the National Geographic International Photography Contest 2009. I would so love to be doing this. I could be Jane and Hubby could by my Tarzan!

About this photograph:

Nazroo, a mahout (elephant driver), poses for a portrait while taking his elephant, Rajan, out for a swim in front of Radha Nagar Beach in Havelock, Andaman Islands. Rajan is one of the few elephants in Havelock that can swim, so when he is not dragging timber in the forest he is used as a tourist attraction. The relationship between the mahout and his elephant usually lasts for their entire lives, creating an extremely strong tie between the animal and the human being. (Photo and caption by Cesare Naldi)

December 27, 2009

Two Fer

There was no way we could keep up with the snow here the past few weeks. Hubby has a cracked rib that is taking its time to heal and trying to shovel snow even carefully is not helping. I would do as much as I could. The snow shovel is about as big as I am and looking down the driveway with two to three feet of snow with 5 foot drifts here and there, the driveway looks as long as a football field. At least that is the impression I have as I feel so intimidated by the overwhelming job of trying to get enough snow out of the way to get the car out of the garage. I think everyone who knows me is by now tired of the snow stories, especially my family in warm sunny southern California.

Hubby suggested we look on craigslist for someone to do the heavy work, enough so we could get to the library and get groceries. We found several ads right away and called one and arranged for someone to come here today around noon. We got a two for the price of one, two very nice young men with two machines. Until today I never cared to hear machines roaring, but I so liked those rip snorting snow eating machines here today.

Yay, we were able to get out of the garage, get down the driveway, take care of the errands, and neither one of us has a sprained back. I have a big grin on my face and I am going to make myself a cup of hot green tea. Yeah.

December 26, 2009

Shadows Of The Dancing Leaves

I have something to quiet me during the winter months. This isn't the exact picture of our windows but close enough.

Sitting in the bedroom during the other three seasons I can see the leaves dancing in the breeze through the drapes. The two huge trees in the front yard are bare now, and the snow and naked branches have a beauty of their own. There are aesthetic qualities to the quiet of nature in winter, which I am learning to appreciate. There are chores to be done in winter that are not needed any other time. During the harsh winter storms I look at pictures of the leaves with fondness. I am still adjusting to the change in weather and the winds and snow. It is invigorating to go outside in cold temperatures, and then it is cozy to come inside and cook and bake and make huge pots of coffee while padding around the house in my UGGs.

We enjoyed our white Christmas. The snow is almost covering the mail box and the black wrought iron chairs are almost covered. My daughter sent me a Snuggie so now I can join the online Snuggie Club!!

December 25, 2009

Big Hearts, Lots Of Love

With hearts full of love and gratitude, we wish everyone a wonderful Christmas!!

December 24, 2009

Any Way You Say It, Say It With Heart

Merry Christmas!
Happy Holidays!
Seasons Greetings!
Happy Christmas!
Happy Hanukah!
Happy Kwanzaa!
Yay Winter Solstice!
Yule Tide Greetings!
Feliz Navidad!

December 22, 2009

My Gift To You

Last year a very kind lady gifted me with a bookmark. Since I read many hours every day, I handle this bookmark several times a day. Occasionally I glance at the words, and often I take the time to read the words, really seeing them and reaching out and embracing them.

If it were possible for me to duplicate the bookmark and send it to each of you over the internet, I would gladly do it. Instead, it is my pleasure to share the words with you in this post.

I wish you enough sun
to keep your attitude bright.

I wish you enough rain
to appreciate the sun more.

I wish you enough happiness
to keep your spirit alive.

I wish you enough pain
so that the smallest joys in
life appear much bigger.

I wish you enough gain
to satisfy your wanting.

I wish you enough loss
to appreciate all that you possess.

I wish you enough hellos
to get you through
the final good-bye.

December 20, 2009

A Kiss Is Still A Kiss, A Sigh ....

(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)About this photo:
Punk lovers kiss on the Central Pier as rebels from across the world arrived for the Rebellion Festival on August 7, 2009 in Blackpool, England. Thousands of punks descended on Blackpool seaside resort for the annual Rebellion festival, featuring bands from the heyday of the rebel punk rock movement.

A post by Janeywan on her blog "Life In Westcliffe" relates to this post, don't you think?

December 19, 2009

Donkey Business

Young Chuck moved to Texas and bought a donkey from a farmer for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey the next day. The next day the farmer drove up and said, 'Sorry Chuck, but I have some bad news, the donkey died.'

Chuck replied, 'Well, then just give me my money back.'

The farmer said, 'Can't do that. I went and spent it already.'

Chuck said, 'OK, then, just bring me the dead donkey.'

The farmer asked, 'What ya gonna do with a dead donkey?'

Chuck said, 'I'm going to raffle him off.'

The farmer said 'You can't raffle off a dead donkey!'

Chuck said, 'Sure I can. Watch me. I just won't tell anybody he's dead.'

A month later, the farmer met up with Chuck and asked, 'What happened with that dead donkey?'

Chuck said, 'I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at two dollars apiece and made a profit of $898.00.'

The farmer said, 'Didn't anyone complain?'

Chuck said, 'Just the guy who won. So I gave him his two dollars back.'

Chuck now works for JP Morgan.

Note: A reader sent this in to The Daily Dish.

December 18, 2009

The Spirit Of The Season

It begins long before the first frost -

Somewhere between memory and reality.

It touches us with compassion

and whispers to us of hope.

It tiptoes into our hearts with elation

and opens our souls to faith.

Its name is Christmas and we have yet to learn

How to keep it close for more than

this one brief, shining moment.

Someday, perhaps...with love.

~~Written by Judith A. Lindberg

December 17, 2009

Prick Or Treat Train Rides

This article in BBC News is titled Anti-groping Cameras Set For Tokyo Train Lines.

"Train gropers - or chikan - are common characters in Japanese popular culture. A railway company in Japan is to install special cameras on its Tokyo commuter trains to help deal with the problem of groping on public transport. In a survey, four in five women report being molested on public transport."

If I lived in Japan, I would be selling big giant old fashioned hat pins to women as they arrived at the train stations. Instead of Bag Lady, I would be known as Prick Lady and proud of it. I could hold classes to teach the timid Japanese ladies exactly where to aim the hat pins!

December 13, 2009

My First Time

This is the first time for me.

The first time I don't have house plants.

The first time to not have a pet.

The first time to not be married to a guy who has a motorcycle.

The first time to be married to a guy with freckles.

The first time to be married to a composer/lead guitar player.

The first time to be happily married.

The first time to live in Nebraska (been living here over one year now).

The first time to not be working at a job.

The first time to shovel snow. It is hard work!!

The driveway looked like the length of a football field, at least when it had snow on it. The snow came up higher than my knees in some places. Our house is the third house in the curve at the end of the cul-de-sac. There were so many different machines coming around clearing out the snow off the street. Little riding lawnmowers with blades on front, trucks with the huge snow shovels in front, and some gigantic John Deere machines that were almost too large for the cul-de-sac. I didn't know the snow caused so much activity but it is good to know this little town is prepared. We didn't go anywhere the first few days of the snow storm, and then we looked in the frig and decided we needed to get to the store and as long as we were going there we would go out to lunch and to the library. It was two degrees in the morning, so we wore tee shirts with sweats over that and snow boots and two pairs of gloves and down jackets with hoods. I practically had to roll out the door just to get out there and pick up the snow shovel. We worked a couple hours to get enough of the height down so I could drive out of the garage over the snow, and we made two tracks for the tires. By the time we finished I was so tired I had to sit awhile until I could use my hands again and my legs stopped feeling like rubber. I showered and dressed and then the garage door wouldn't work. It was too cold. Tried the remote several times and got the garage door to open, and the opening in the driveway was just enough to get out with the car doors against snow banks. We had a new adventure and we worked together and accomplished plenty for one day for a couple of oldies but goodies!

Note: This picture is of the garage taken from the back porch.

December 11, 2009

Online Party Nothing Like The Old Party Line

Cyberspace: Love Online is an article in Psychology Today.

Aaron Ben-Ze'ev, a philosopher who is now president of Haifa University in Israel, does not think intimate Internet relationships, and even cyber sex, are all bad. But he does think they could have an impact on the way we conduct offline life and even change our view of infidelity. The subtle but important ways it influences "real" life, is the subject of a fascinating book, Love Online: Emotions on the Internet.

Ze'ev calls cyberspace a kind of "mentally nude commune," where people often strip off their masks. What nudity leaves undone, imagination finishes. Imagination, which paints cyberspace in more intense and seductive colors, also helps people satisfy some of their most profound desires.

What's so ironic about using the internet is that it's a solitary activity that leads to social contact-while it isolates users from their own families, the people in the very next room. One reason it does this is that Internet use is almost addictive; the rewards of contact are so immediate and so pleasurable. And while cyber relationships can be more sincere and open than offline relationships, they also leave a great deal of room for deception, although online relationships are marked more by dreams than deception.

There are times when chatting is cheating. And there's a very simple way to know when you've crossed the line: There's deception.

If you engage in an Internet relationship that you keep secret from your real-life mate, you're engaging in deception. "Chatting is not cheating when the significant other knows about it," says Ze'ev. The trouble with deception is that it kills intimacy and ruptures trust in the primary relationship.

I found this article interesting enough to include it in my blog. I don't know anyone personally who engages in deceptive online behavior, but I believe there are some people, some men and some women, who find a little titillating behavior invigorating. Nothing against them or their behavior, I'm just saying I wouldn't be comfortable expending any of my Luv Energy anywhere but toward my hubby. That's just me.

December 10, 2009

Welcome To The Award Ceremony

Yousei Hime, the mastermind behind the enchanting blog Shiteki Na Usagi, is sharing an award with this blog. It really warms the cackles of my heart (we're talking delighted cackling here folks), particularly because I truly believe this little blog is not in the same league with most of the blogs I read. But it is exactly what I like it to be, evolving slowly, growing up gradually, like me. I am a grandmother of four and I am learning how to be an adult in a grown-up world at last.

Back to the award. Thank you, Yousei, sincerely. I will put the award up on the sidebar very soon. Without duplicating the blogs Yousei is awarding, I am charged with the auspicious task of presenting this award to blogs I admire and appreciate. The award is what you want it to be for you. You have already done an outstanding job so there are no requirements in receiving the award. Pass the award along to deserving blogs if you so choose.

Here we go, the big wheel is spinning around and around and lands on:

Everyone Needs Therapy

Far Side Of Fifty

What I Should Have Said

Ina In Alaska


Ronda's Wonderland

I appreciate these blogs and all the blogs I read regularly. Thank you for sharing in my blogland adventure.

December 08, 2009

What A Waste

It didn't take hubby long to understand the way of the food distribution in our house when we first moved in together. We buy what we need, we use all of it. Simple.

In our house there is no waste. When we cook chicken or turkey, the bones are in the crock pot immediately for broth. Small amounts of leftovers are packaged and placed in the freezer for a later homemade soup or fried rice or rice pilaf. You get the picture.

It must come from my childhood uncertainty of the source of the next meal. My brother has the same need to fill cupboards and freezer although I don't think he is as obsessed with not wasting like I am.

This article is probably more disturbing to someone with my background than to lots of readers.

December 06, 2009

Lily Warning Lily Warning Lily Warning

When I read this story about the danger of lilies around cats, I sent the link to the cat owners I know to help spread the information.

According to the article, petals, stems or leaves of Easter lilies, stargazer lilies, lots of lilies, can kill cats. Find the whole list of toxic plants on the ASPCA's poison control site.

December 04, 2009

Not A Log Cabin, But A Log Radio To Put In A Log Cabin

Why am I so interested in solar energy? Maybe because I am old enough to remember the science projects and alternative energy discussions throughout school. Maybe because I have witnessed the escalating costs of electricity while the demand and need for electricity keep increasing. Maybe the thought of living a simple life and being able to be self-sustaining is appealing. An article in Scientific American says that solar energy costs 50% less than less year. This is so encouraging. Hubby and I share a desire to some day build a geodesic dome home.

Simple things like this log radio are appealing to me. The full description is on Design Boom.
This log radio doesn't use batteries or electricity, just solar energy.

December 02, 2009

The Smaller Dinner Plate

We started using smaller plates, thus fooling our stomachs into thinking they are receiving the regular amount of food. Why look, the plate is full so we must be getting ready for another feast. I can't say gourmet feast because the way we eat is definitely not gourmet. But it is nourishing. You know how someone says "Is he cute?" and to be honest you can only come up with "He has such a good personality". Same sort of diversion. Enter the small plate.

It is funny how my brain can be led down the garden path so easily. Now when I bring out the regular size dinner plates they look like the must be dinner platters, they are HUGE now that I have gotten used to the smaller plates. Actually the plates we use are salad/dessert plates. I always heard that as people mature (ahem, attention all seniors) we don't need to eat as much as we did when we were younger. I am here to attest to the fact that I do NOT need to eat like I used to and I feel better when I eat less and when I stay away from FF&K. I try not to say it out loud because my stomach really likes this and if it hears FF&K out loud or smells it there are rumblings and growlings that are hard to speak over. Let me whisper: frenchfriesandketchup. Did you hear that? Anyway, my friend at Fragrant Liar has inspired me to diligently watch what and how much I eat between now and Christmas. I think she jump started a few of us with her post about food. Hip Hip Hooray, let the games begin. Everyone in their places. Ready Set Go.

November 30, 2009

Nuts Online

Ah nuts!! I admit it. I'm a nut. I'm also a nut lover. Not the kind of nuts I meet online, my fellow bloggers. Although I do love my fellow bloggers to bits!!

There are at least two kinds of nuts here in our house (not hubby and me) at any given time. Pecans, almonds, peanuts are the favorites. We put them in salads, toss them into homemade fried rice dishes as well as other casseroles. We even chop peanuts in the coffee bean grinder and roll boneless chicken breasts in the ground peanuts for the best chicken fingers!

Did you know there is a difference between assorted nuts and mixed nuts??? Yep, who knew!!

After several attempts to keep enough nuts in house, I ordered nuts and dried fruit online from Just thought I would pass that along to the other nuts out there, oh I mean nut lovers.

November 27, 2009

Red Hair and Freckles

In 2004, Nicole Giladi gave birth to twins, a daughter with brown hair and a son with copper-colored hair.

When her son started walking, "I couldn't believe how much attention he got," she says.

But there were no books available that could explain to her son how special he was, she says. So she decided to write a book, "so that he can understand why he has red hair, why he has freckles, why he burns in the sun," she says. "Little Redheads Across America", 88 pages of kid-friendly facts about red-haired children (littleredheadsacrossamerica .com.

In "The Redhead Encyclopedia", Stephen Douglas estimates that 1% to 2% of the world's population has red hair.

This information is in an article in USA Today. What I found interesting was that the parents of the little red haired delights were teaching them to think of themselves as special instead of feeling odd or freakish. Unfortunately, I was unable to meet my hubby's mother, but I would have so many questions for her if I could meet her. My husband was the only one is his family of mother, father and two siblings with blazing red hair and freckles over his entire body. There weren't any others like him in the town he grew up in and it affected him negatively. Instead of feeling special or unique, he spent his childhood trying ways to be someone else. One of the ways was drugs. He discovered at a young age that drugs would transport him to a different place and he could be someone else and not a freak.

In a related CNN story, a twelve year old red headed boy was beaten up by a group of seventh and eight graders when encouraged by a Facebook page stating that Friday was Kick a Ginger Day referring to redheads and possibly inspired by an episode of the "South Park" series.

Fortunately, over the past few years he has been able to come to accept who he was at birth, accept the life he has led for most of his life, and let go of the disappointment he felt as a child feeling so different and isolated. So reading how parents are equipping their red headed children with a strong inner acceptance and ability to view themselves as unique and special filled me with delight. These children are given a chance for self esteem and acceptance. I look at the red headed kids here in the midwest and I think what a different life it would have been for my hubby if he had grown up here where there would have lots of children who looked like him. But that wasn't the way it was and it is what it is and things are good now. I think I will get that new book about red heads for hubby though. Smile. It is funny that I ended up with him, and when I was growing up I would wish I had read hair and freckles! Now I have them, just not on me!!!

November 26, 2009


Photo by John Moore/AP

Count your blessings and be grateful.

Many hugs to those in need.

Happy Thanksgiving.

November 24, 2009

Thanks, Pilgrim (In My John Wayne Accent)

In the United States, Thanksgiving is always celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November. Thanksgiving Day is associated with elaborate parades, turkey dinners with all the trimmings, family and friends gathering together in celebration, football, golf, and other sports all day long.

I'm not a bah humbug person, but I have always been a practical person. Raising three kids and working full time left me with little energy or enthusiasm on lots of holidays. My kids grew up with our very own traditions that were initiated for my benefit. I knew I could do a better job of cooking and participating in the games and cheer if I was feeling good. So in our house when my kids were quite young we watched the parade on TV and had a quiet day the Thursday that was the actual Thanksgiving Day. On Friday we shopped for groceries. Saturday morning I was sufficiently rested to get up early and tackle the big Tom Turkey. Their friends were invited to have a second Thanksgiving dinner with us on Saturday and we celebrated.

As the kids got older, I encouraged them to accept invitations to Thanksgiving dinner at friends houses and to invite their friends to enjoy our dinner and games on the Saturday. That seemed to work out for everyone.

This year is my first Thanksgiving to be unemployed. It hasn't been a month since I left my job, said goodbye to my favorite boss ever, and am adjusting to a life of retirement. And this year I am going to fry chicken instead of the traditional turkey. Hubby will make his dressing and put it on a cookie sheet to put into the oven to get his just right crunchy dressing. I will fix mashed potatoes and gravy and of course the green bean casserole. Not huge amounts, but there will be leftovers for a few days. We will take a walk and play darts and listen to music and read and call our siblings and children.

I have a full and grateful heart. Thanksgiving usually brings thoughts of abundance; plenty of food, lots of friends, caring and sharing the overflowing love.

It is a pleasure to hear other plans for Thanksgiving. I would welcome any and all comments describing your anticipated holiday.

November 21, 2009

Unfit, Uneducated, Criminal

According to an article in the Boston Herald, "An alarming 75 percent of Americans ages 17 to 24 would not qualify for military service today because they are physically unfit, failed to finish high school or have criminal records.

While some experts voiced doubt that obesity and other societal ills would keep three out of four young adults out of the ranks, the report titled "Ready, Willing and Unable to Serve" was endorsed by U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan, former NATO commander Gen. Wesley Clark and top retired admirals and generals.

Retired Rear Adm. James Barnett said "Our national security in the year 2030 is absolutely dependent on what’s going on in kindergarten today."

Increasingly, applicants are disqualified for having asthma or for taking pills for depression or attention disorders. Nearly one-third of all young adults have health issues other than weight that could keep them from serving, according to the report of the group Mission: Readiness.

Mission: Readiness organizers, including Education Secretary Duncan, are pressing Congress to approve the Early Learning Challenge Fund, which would provide $1 billion annually in grants to states for 10 years to improve childhood development programs.

Even after signing up, 7 to 15 percent of enlistees return home for not meeting all that basic training demands."

November 18, 2009

A Thankful Heart

My Grateful List is kept handy on my desktop, clicked on and viewed and revised often.

The list is not my screensaver. I don't want to become so used to seeing it that I become indifferent to it.

Here's a big Thank You to hubby for advising me to begin a Grateful List four years ago. My list has grown and dwindled and been revised many times since then. But it has remained an important mooring line in my recovery.

I am going to share my actual list here. This is my Grateful List:


My new relationship with God
My Recovery
My children
The Calm Times
Sincere Amends
Understanding Boundaries
A Good Night’s Sleep
Second Chances
My Sponsor
Each Day
My Girlie Side
Sunny, Cool Days
Days I Can Concentrate
My Past
A Good Cup Of Coffee
A Simple Life
Hearing With Ears And Heart
My Inner Child
A roof over my head
Income to live on
Sincere People
My Therapist
My growth

I would like to see my online blogger friends share a list of what they are grateful for. We share so many personal things in our blogs, happy and sad, good and bad. For me, a Grateful List is positive and rock solid. Thanks for letting me share.

November 16, 2009

The Shame And Blame Game

Her: You were snoring again last night.

Him: I'm sorry, did I wake you?

Her: I'm not getting enough sleep.

Him: I'm sorry, are you tired today?

Her: This isn't working for me.

Him: I'm sorry.

November 13, 2009

$10,000 Boob Job

"WACO, Texas - She claimed she had breast cancer, but now cops say it was all a big lie - she just wanted bigger breasts!

Police have accused a Texas woman of lying about having breast cancer and spending $10,000 raised at a benefit to have her breasts enlarged.

McLennan County sheriff’s investigator James Pack said in court records that 24-year-old Trista Joy Lathern shaved her head to look like a cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy.

But the plastic surgeon she went to knew about the benefit and called the cops."

When I read articles like this I have to pinch myself and remind myself that this is a true story. Someone actually shaved her head and arranged to attend a benefit in her honor under false pretenses. How sad is that! Someone wanted breast enhancement so desperately that she sold her honor to get it. This is fraud! Hey, I would like a tummy tuck and breast lift surgery (gravity has taken its toll), but I would not lie and cheat and steal to get that done. I don't know if that means I am not vain enough or if I believe in truth, justice, and hanging loose.

Friday The Thirteenth

Today is Friday, the thirteenth day of November. Everyone knows that thirteen is an unlucky number, right? Did you know that any month's 13th day will fall on a Friday if the month starts on a Sunday? That's all it is.

It used to be such a mystery to me as a young person and my fellow students and I carried on the superstitious nature of this phenomenon. Because it didn't happen every month, we enjoyed the sensation of power that this unique day held to bring bad luck to anyone who wasn't careful.

Worse than stepping on a crack in the sidewalk or walking under a ladder! In a way, this superstition perpetuated a fear that was a tickler and a teaser so much so that when I got through the day without a major mishap I then knew I was lucky. There is a name for the fear of Friday the thirteenth: Paraskevidekatriaphobia. Betcha can't say that three times quickly.

I wasn't lucky enough to waltz through each and every Friday the thirteenth unscathed. The day I broke my finger playing volleyball at school was a Friday the thirteenth. The day my old clunker car died permanently was a Friday the thirteenth. The day a girl in my brother's class hit him in the head with her square wooden purse and split his head open was a Friday the thirteenth. I wasn't injured but she was when I found her and I was suspended from school for the unprovoked attack. Of course the way I looked at it was I just defending my brother.

According to experts it's the most widespread superstition in the United States today. Have you ever seen a thirteenth floor in a hotel? Some people refuse to go to work on Friday the 13th; some won't eat in restaurants; many wouldn't think of setting a wedding on the date.

How many Americans actually suffer from this condition? According to Dr. Donald Dossey, a psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of phobias, the figure may be as high as 21 million. If he's right, at least eight percent of Americans are still in the grips of a very old superstition.

I have been set free from the fears that have inhabited my life throughout my childhood. This Friday is just another weekday. I am no longer held captive by a tradition not based in fact.

So enjoy your Friday everyone. Oh, and good luck!

November 10, 2009


"Jack is looking at Anne, but Anne is looking at George. Jack is married, but George is not. Is a married person looking at an unmarried person?

A) Yes.

B) No.

C) Cannot be determined.

Go to Cosmic Variance for the answer.

While you are there, take the time to read some of the many comments. I am not usually one to take time to read other people's comments, but in this case the comments were as entertaining as the post.

November 08, 2009

Jane Austen Exhibition

This picture is Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy and Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth Bennet in the movie "Pride and Prejudice". I think I have seen every Colin Firth movie.

I am a huge fan of Jane Austen. New York is too far to travel to see this exhibition. But I will continue to investigate everything about it.

"A major Jane Austen exhibition, which has opened in New York, is creating a huge stir among fans and cultural commentators. More than 100 items, including rare manuscripts and letters written by the British author to her family, have gone on display at the Morgan Library and Museum in Manhattan.

The letters - which is the largest collection in the world - are full of the author's famous stinging wit and her spirited sense of humour.

A highlight of the exhibition is the only surviving and complete handwritten manuscript of one of Austen's novels, Lady Susan."

November 06, 2009

Good Writing, Great Post, Grrrrr Anger

This is such a good post that I asked Louisey at Letting Go if she would mind my linking to it here.

These are some quotes from the post:

"Getting strong or reprehensible emotions out of me was like trying to pry an oyster shell open with a plastic spoon."

"Do you realise that if men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament?"

"‘Well you’re not particularly masculine, so that makes us quits. Plus, you’re bald and I always associate balding with erectile dysfunction."

"What would you feel like if your wife carried a gun around with her all the time and pointed it in your direction each time you tried to say something? Would she need to pull the trigger to keep you in your place?"

Whew. I am always assured of great writing on the Letting Go blog, and sometimes like this particular one there are a myriad of personal reactions that zing my nerve impulses.

November 04, 2009

Remember Hollywood Squares?

These great questions and answers are from the days when ' Hollywood Squares' game show responses were spontaneous, not scripted, as they are now. Peter Marshall was the host asking the questions, of course..

Q. Do female frogs croak?
A. Paul Lynde: If you hold their little heads under water long enough.

Q. According to Cosmopolitan, if you meet a stranger at a party and you think that he is attractive, is it okay to come out and ask him if he's married?
A. Rose Marie: No wait until morning.

Q. Which of your five senses tends to diminish as you get older?
A. Charley Weaver: My sense of decency.

Q. What are 'Do It,' 'I Can Help,' and 'I Can't Get Enough'?
A. George Gobel: I don't know, but it's coming from the next apartment.

Q. Paul, why do Hell's Angels wear leather?
A. Paul Lynde: Because chiffon wrinkles too easily.

Q. Charley, you've just decided to grow strawberries. Are you going to get any during the first year?
A. Charley Weaver: Of course not, I'm too busy growing strawberries.

Q. It is considered in bad taste to discuss two subjects at nudist camps. One is politics, what is the other?
A. Paul Lynde: Tape measures.

Q. Can boys join the Camp Fire Girls?
A. Marty Allen: Only after lights out.

Q. When you pat a dog on its head he will wag his tail. What will a goose do?
A. Paul Lynde: Make him bark?

Q. It is the most abused and neglected part of your body, what is it?
A. Paul Lynde: Mine may be abused, but it certainly isn't neglected.

Q. When a couple have a baby, who is responsible for its sex?
A. Charley Weaver: I'll lend him the car, the rest is up to him.

Q. According to Ann Landers, what are two things you should never do in bed?
A. Paul Lynde: Point and laugh.

Pretty risque'! Peter Marshall hosted the show 1966 - 1981. Fifteen years on a live game show!

November 01, 2009

Hot Fudge Sundae

I am a fan of hot fudge sundaes. This is a recipe that sounds so good to me, so I am going to make it this week. It is a hot fudge sundae cake recipe and it is made in a slow cooker. I know this is something my grand kids would appreciate. Since I live 1500 miles from them, I emailed this recipe to my daughter.


1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking cocoa
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped nuts
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup baking cocoa
1 1/2 cup hot water


Spray inside of 2 to 3 1/2-quart slow cooker with cooking spray.

Mix flour, sugar, 2 tablespoons cocoa, the baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in milk, oil and vanilla until smooth. Stir in nuts. Spread batter evenly in the slow cooker.

Mix brown sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa in a small bowl. Stir in hot water until smooth. Pour evenly over the batter in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Turn off the slow cooker. Let cake stand uncovered 30 to 40 minutes to cool slightly before serving.

Spoon warm cake into dessert dishes. Spoon sauce over top.

SIX Servings.

October 31, 2009

The Welcome Mat

I think I need to get a refund on my plastic surgery!!!!

How about a hug???

October 30, 2009

Birthday Hugs And Kisses

This is a special day.

It is Halloween eve.

It is Henry Winkler's birthday, and Otis Williams, and Ruth Gordon (we just watched her in the old movie Harold and Maude).

What makes this day special for me is that my hubby is sixty years old today. He is still young thinking. A cool dude. His body is showing signs of wear and tear but after the thirty-something years on drugs and alcohol it isn't any wonder. His nine years clean and sober are something to celebrate.

So today we celebrate his sixtieth birthday with a special emphasis on his recovery.

October 27, 2009

Marc Playle, An Inspriation

Strat-O-Blogster Guitar Blog had this video on his blog. Isn't this amazing?

October 26, 2009

Don't Be Foolish

“Only the most foolish of mice would hide in a cat's ear, but only the wisest of cats would think to look there”

-- Andrew Mercer

After daily reminders the past couple weeks, this story is an example of foolish parents. Teaching children to lie for attention. Using the media for attention. Making false reports to authorities that eventually caused a major airport to temporarily shut down for attention. Very Foolish.

October 24, 2009

Finders Keepers

I will seek and find you.. I shall take you to bed and have my way with you. I will make you ache, shake & sweat until you moan & groan.I will make you beg for mercy, beg for me to stop. I will exhaust you to the point that you will be relieved when I'm finished with you. And, when I am finished, you will be weak for days.
All my love, The Flu

I found this at Tales From The Serenity Now Hospital.

Hubby and I are still fighting the flu bug, feeling so much better but can't shake it. So it was a relief to read this and be able to laugh at something that doesn't want to let us go!!!

October 22, 2009

One Brick At A Time

If something is to last it needs to be built right.
Fundamental design.
Reliable foundation.
The strongest materials.
Dedication to completion.

Like the construction industry, life needs structure. Balance. Planning. Strength.

Building a healthy, happy life takes work and dedication. Persistence but not obstinance. Stamina and determination.

When I think of my life today, I picture myself building a structure, one brick at a time. Able to withstand negative forces. Heavy-duty. Strong.

October 20, 2009

Rock - It Energy

Murakami Chair on Design Boom.

Check it out.

I wonder if I would get nauseous if I tried to read while rocking, or if I would have to rock to build up energy for the light and stop rocking to read. Hmmmm.

October 19, 2009

They Always Need More Firefighters In California

"CHESTER CITY, Pa. — A Chester City firefighter was suspended without pay Thursday for refusing to remove an American flag sticker from his locker. Story here.

Firefighters can post personal items inside the lockers, but the outside must remain "free of alteration," according to the directive.

Some firefighters didn’t think the American flag was included in the ban. The flag is stitched on their uniforms, hangs on their trucks, and flies on a pole out front."

People who live in southern California live with an increased awareness of dry plants near the house and shingles on the roof. Big no-no's.

El Nino country. Wind. Brush fires. Homes at risk.

If the Pennsylvania firefighter loses his job, he should contact any of the larger southern California fire departments for an application!

Just sayin'.

October 18, 2009

Teach Little Boys To Wash Their Hands

Men are less likely to wash their hands properly than women, according to a new study.
" While the majority of women use soap and water on their hands after using the bathroom, men often need blunt reminders to lather up, according to research on hygiene habits conducted by London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

The study, released on Global Hand Washing Day, October 15, used online sensors to record how much soap was used by 250,000 people after they had used the toilet.

The results revealed a large discrepancy between the sexes: only 32 percent of men used soap compared with 64 percent of women. Some of the men that were included in the study were only urinating, that's probably why they think they don't need to wash their hands even if they should.

While women responded to gentle reminders like "Water doesn't kill germs, soap does," men often only washed their hands after reading explicit signs like "Soap it off or eat it later," researchers observed. If they think other people are watching them, then they are more likely to wash hands."

October 16, 2009

At What Price?

One of the blogs I have followed for awhile is called Tranquility Cove. Isn't that a lovely name? Just the name is calming. Not all the posts are calming, however. This post is thought provoking at a minimum and soul stirring for anyone who has a conscience.

Chriss is a good writer and a wonderful photographer.
Please read the post on Tranquility Cove and let me know what you think.

People who have lived on this planet over fifty years can testify to the changes that cannot be denied. Being a responsible citizen of this earth is not political or religious.

Another blog I have followed for as long as I have been blogging is The Alternative Consumer. I have found some great items and information there.

October 15, 2009

It's A Free World

Each blogger has an online personality similar to each of our finger prints. Ours alone. Our own style. Our own color scheme. Our own choices: Ads or no ads, awards or not, continuity or constant change, theme(s), anonymous or open, word verification for commenting or not, subscribing to the blog to leave comments.

Today I learned a new one. Some bloggers actually charge people to leave a comment. Pay Pal is available for their convenience. So if you want to leave a comment on some blogs you pay for the privilege.

I know that some bloggers view their blogs as a business. They have learned the ins and outs of earning money from the ads that take up space on their blogs. I would like to see a post by a really good writer about the ads on blogs. Some of them are so annoying, appearing again and again when someone is trying to read a post.

This is me giving a big giant sigh of relief. Sigh.

Because I blog for the pleasure of it. All of it. I choose to read other blogs and I choose when and if to comment. I choose my format and colors. Maybe I haven't had enough choices in my life because having the freedom in blogging is the main reason for my doing it. Free being the key word.

October 14, 2009

Showing Luuuv

Me: If you really loved me, you would rub my feet and slather lotion all over them.

Hubby: Hmm what?

Me: When we sit on the couch and I sit sideways with my feet in your lap I am giving you a chance to show Luuuuuv!

Hubby: WTF. Okay. Hand me the damn bottle of lotion.

Me: Mmmmmmm.

Later in the evening.

Hubby: If you really loved me, you would rub my neck.

Me: Not tonight, babe, I am all relaxed from my foot rub. I really love you though.

Life isn't always fair. I thought I had a cold about three weeks ago but it was very minor. Yesterday I really came down with a cold. Hubby has a cold and so do I. Who is the designated person to make hot tea or soup or wash clothes when we are both sick? Around four in the morning my coughing woke me and I came out to the living room to find hubby sitting up reading and trying to stop coughing too. He took some cough medicine that apparently helped because he returned to bed and slept till eight thirty. We are running out of tissues. I hope one of us feels like going to the pharmacy today for some things. I have some beef stock in the frig so I am going to make some vegetable beef soup in the slow cooker today. That's it, then I won't do another thing today. Read and sleep.

October 13, 2009

Heavy Equipment In Precision

Go visit Wizard of Otin if you want to be entertained.

October 11, 2009

Sharing The Fruit Of Life

There is much to be experienced in this life. How we meet challenges can be cause for praise or condemnation. Usually self denunciation if we are disappointed in ourselves.

One way that helps me work through struggle is to share. Not in a codependent way by looking for gratification or recognition. In fact, many times I am able to share anonymously.

I have had many different lifestyles throughout the years. Since money rules in this world, sometimes there was plenty and sometimes not. When money was plenty, I was able to help people I didn't know or sometimes people I met but really didn't know. When money was in short supply, there were always ways to share, either my energy or knowledge or household goods. I read several blogs that show me that the writers share my belief that material things aren't on the same level as taking a breath or being able to think and speak. The things of this universe are for all of us. For as long as I have lived I have never felt that what is mine is mine alone. Yes, maybe I worked hard to earn money to get something that would enhance my life. But I could not wrap my arms around that material thing and hang on and guard it so no one else would try to take it away. In my heart I have always been content with just enough to meet my basic needs. My children would have preferred that I would have striven to a higher standard. I am grateful that they too believe in sharing as a way of life; however, they prefer to live on a much grander scale than I do. Perhaps it was my meager beginnings that set the course for me. Most of my childhood was very poor. But since that is all we knew, my brother and I accepted it and learned that hunger was just how it was. When other kids ridiculed my clothes I let them know how unkind that was, sometimes by being unkind myself. That is something I had to work on for a long time, not retaliating. We were one of the families that would benefit from a box brought to our house with Thanksgiving food and also one at Christmas. Otherwise there would be no extras on those holidays. Upon reaching adulthood I am somehow involved in sharing with families like I grew up with, even sometimes putting together packages and delivering to families myself.

What started me thinking about writing a post on sharing is that I am in the process of moving back into the house with hubby. Instead of ads on craigslist to sell the furniture in the apartment, hubby and I are giving the furniture to some people who need it. We have all been the ones in need of something here and there. Why should the almighty dollar rule over everything? Like I said, things are for all of us to use. This is sharing. Finding someone who has a need and sharing what I have. No strings attached. Hoping this person will be in a position to help someone else some day. With some thing or their time. No strings attached. Giving. Sharing.

October 10, 2009

First Snow

This is the view from the kitchen window into the back yard this morning.

When I plodded into the kitchen to start the coffee, I pulled up the blind on the back door, and this was what I saw. For an hour I walked around and made noise, hoping hubby would wake up. I put a couple leftover tacos in the microwave (yep, my favorite breakfast is leftovers, especially tacos!), and the microwave turned off and so did the lights. Uh oh. I put on slippers and trudged outside to the side of the house and could not figure out how to open the circuit breaker box. Dang. So when hubby got up I had two surprises for him. Snow. Circit breaker emergency. It was an emergency by then because I now had cold coffee.

Hubby remedied the electrical delay and we have been enjoying hot coffee and blogging while we watch the snow still fluttering outside. Warm and cozy inside.

October 09, 2009

Yo Taxi! Taxi!

Tegucigalpa, Honduras: People queue for taxis
Photograph: Rodrigo Abd/AP

I haven't waited in line for a taxi except on the day cruises got into port, and the passengers disembarked. There was a long line of taxis ready to whisk the passengers off to airports or whatever destination, so it all moved along surprisingly quickly.

The people in this line look like they are there for awhile, slowly step by step making their way to the front of the line to get the next taxi. Maybe they need a couple more taxis here. Competing with the the taxis there now. Or bus service. Anyway, this picture speaks to me of the many many people around the world at the mercy of someone else to get from one place to another, and where I live we take for granted we can drive somewhere when we want to go somewhere. I am grateful for my situation but I care about the people waiting in lines all over the world.

October 07, 2009

Girl Flu or Swine Flu Alert

Found on Cute Overload:

Attention all pigs! There is an elevated risk of a deadly strain of “girl flu.” If not treated early, girl flu can lead to death, or in extreme cases, cooties. Pigs are urged to avoid prolonged contact with girls, and also avoid activities which may weaken the immune system, such as shopping or watching romantic comedies.

October 05, 2009

Gas Mask Bra

See my new bra? Works great a couple hours after a meal of refried beans.

Victoria Gill, Science reporter for BBC News, writes that "Designers of a bra that turns into gas masks and a team who found that named cows produce more milk were among the winners of the 2009 Ig Nobel prizes. The aim of the awards is to honor achievements that "first make people laugh and then make them think. Dr Elena Bodnar won the public health prize for the bra that, in an emergency, can be converted into two gas masks. She demonstrated her invention and gave one to each of the Nobel laureates as a gift. The bra can be converted into one mask for the wearer and one for a needy bystander."

Seriously, congratulations to all the winners of the Ig Nobel prizes. The Ig Nobel Prizes were presented to the winners by genuine Nobel laureates.

A special congratulations to the winner of the Ig Nobel prize winner in the category of medicine, Donald L Unger of Thousand Oaks, California, US, for investigating a possible cause of arthritis of the fingers, by diligently cracking the knuckles of his left hand but not his right hand every day for more than 60 years. That shows a dedication I would like to see in other areas, maybe in a future post.

October 04, 2009

Will The Virtual Libraries Of The Future Fill My Needs?

This article shakes my world. The library is my second home. The traditional room with rows of stacked books and videos and DVD's and CD's and some PC's.

I am so comfortable in a library. I might have mentioned in previous posts that I have moved many times in my life, about a hundred times actually, and lived in six states as an adult. Within a week of moving into a new place, I would find the local library. If the library was close enough, I would toss a back pack on my back, walk to the library, spend hours there getting to know the new layout. After checking out books with my new library card I would hike back to the new place and unpack the treasures I found at the library.

Because I have always been a voracious reader, it is not possible for me to own many books. For one thing, I move so much and books are heavy and costly to move, and for another, I would need to live in a mansion to fit all the books I have read. So the library has been my "best friend" all my life.

I have seen several articles lately like this one discussing the future of libraries and the trend toward digital. I can see myself some day sliding a disk into my computer and reading a book on the monitor. Not nearly as cozy as curling up with a book on the couch with my feet in hubby's lap while sipping a cup of coffee.

October 02, 2009

Responsible Teen

There is a good story in the Detroit Free Press. Hopefully it will have a good ending too.

"..teen turns in cash. Investigators are hoping to find the rightful owner of a stash of cash an 18-year-old Howell resident found while picking up pop cans along the side of a Livingston County road. The amount is less than $1,000 but enough for the Michigan State Police to try to find out who lost it."

Evidently, some parents are teaching their children to act responsibly and in consideration of other people. The story in the newspaper tells of an eighteen year old young man who found some money, talked it over with his dad, and decided to turn the money over to the police.

If no one claims the money in six months, the young man will be presented the money, which is less than one thousand dollars. What if the amount he found was much more? What if his dad encouraged him to keep it and not tell anyone? What if. What if. But it is what is is, and this teen may be receiving a reward for following his conscience and not his empty wallet. He should be allowed to put this story in his applications to college and in his resume in the future when he applies for jobs.

September 30, 2009

Bicycle Diaries

This could be my husband! Well, the man in this article could be my husband. Well, not exactly like that. The man in this article is a musician. So is my hubby. The man in this article writes. So does my husband. The man in this article rides a bike. So does my hubby. Lots of people know this man by name and appearance and his music. Not so much my hubby. I get all of him. I am his biggest fan. His bipolar disorder and all his addictions conflicted with his success. That is a good way of saying it, huh. He has been clean and sober nine years but the bipolar disorder cannot be left behind like the addictions. My hubby has more talent in his baby finger than I could ever hope to have.

Musician, writer, and artist, David Byrne is going to ride a bicycle ..."around Detroit, Istanbul, London, San Francisco, Manila, New York -- you name it. He cycles through cities bike-friendly and bike-hostile, musing on the myriad advantages (and disadvantages) of getting around on two wheels in places where, often, a man on a bike (a famous man, with shockingly white hair, no less) is a strange sight indeed. He muses on everything from urban planning to bike helmets to art criticism to Latin music, often on his bike (but not always). Even if you don't own a bike and have no plans to mount one, you'll pedal through the pages of "Bicycle Diaries" in no time; the book is full of musings by a compelling eccentric."

This post is a preview of a book review of "Bicycle Diaries" by David Byrne, because I am going to buy this book for my hubby's 60th birthday next month. That means I will get to read it too!

My hubby rides his bike at least twenty mornings each month. When I met him he rode his bike every day. At least once. The new meds the doctors have him taking this year have caused him to gain some weight and have affected his thyroid. But my hubby is determined to stay as balanced as possible and not have another manic episode. The exercise regimen of riding the bike shows his determination to be consistent and be as healthy as he can be.

For more information about David Byrne's bicycle tours check his website.