Monday, June 30, 2008

Who do you hate?

Political frustration
Who do YOU hate?

McCain or Obama or both?

Newsflash! You don't have to hate one candidate just because you "love" another candidate. We're not in grammar school any more.

Please, if you do hate one of them, I do NOT really want to know.

I'm so frustrated from reading posts by bloggers, who rather than discussing actual political issues have instead decided to jump on every tiny little fault or mistake of the candidate they "hate" and proceed to "trash" them defiantly and with great delight.

Why do people feel they have to hate the "other" candidate?

I'm beginning to worry and wonder about the mental and emotional stability of our citizens when hatred becomes the motivation to campaign for your candidate of choice.

ALL candidates deserve our respect. It certainly is not easy to run for office these days.

Think I'll browse some calmer blog categories for awhile.

All this hatred is depressing.

Manic Monday

Manic Monday
Remember that song "Manic Monday" by the Bangles? The year was 1986 and the Bangles were an all female band. It's still one of my favorite songs and so I've decided to devote today and maybe future Mondays to Manic Monday - fun things to go along with my frazzled, manic mind on Mondays.

You can read the lyrics at http://www.lyrics007.com/The%20Bangles%20Lyrics/Manic%20Monday%20Lyrics.html

I stumbled across this one over at The Esoterical Journey.

List your top six fears, necessities or hardships...

What better way to spend Monday than analyzing what I fear? Hopefully during the analysis I can get rid of the fears, or at least minimize them by replacing them with better more postive thoughts.

First you'll see my fears, then in quotes you will see my replacement strategy.


  1. Homelessness - Yes, I am at times afraid of becoming homeless.
    Then again, sometimes I think it would be a relief to not have to worry about utility bills, lot rent, etc. Maybe living in the car for a few weeks would be good for me.

  2. Lightning - My former homes have been struck by lightning a few times, and so I have a more than healthy respect for lightning. I can actually "feel" the electricity sometimes during a storm.
    Lightning brings me to a place of prayer... which is a good thing. Lightning reminds me that no structure or material thing is ever completely safe and secure. It can all be gone in a flash (pun intended). Appreciate what you have while you have it. Give thanks at all times.

  3. Snakes - I hate snakes. The only good snake is a dead snake.
    Okay, I haven't come face to face with a snake since maybe the year 2000, which was my fourth time. My cats killed that one. I have never been bitten, so what am I worried about? If one does mysteriously appear in my home as has happened to friends of mine, I would just leave and call someone to come take care of the snake, a snake hitman. Plus, I have a cat and I trust him to protect me from snakes.

  4. Driving at night in the rain - I can't see and the stress level is phenomenal. I have a couple of medical conditions that are worsened by stress, and it can take a full two days to recover completely.
    I really should get a cellphone so I could stop and call someone while I wait for the storm to pass. I could also just pullover and pray, but believe me, I am already praying in this situation. I try to avoid driving at night during the rain, but sometimes it's inevitable. Hmmm, still working on this one. I'll just have to drive at 35mph and let the 20/20 visioned drivers pass me, ignoring their horn blowing.

  5. Making a huge mistake as a parent - my daughter will be a senior this year, in high school. I am now at the place of guiding her to make decisions regarding her future. I am also at a place where I need to let go a little more... aaaaaagh.
    I will trust her more. She has made pretty good decisions thus far, and I will continue to trust her and support her. I will try to remember to place her in God's hands once my job is done.

  6. Lack of future income
    I saved this one for last, not because of importance, but because I already knew that I have no idea how to combat this fear. So, if you are a person of faith, please pray for me. Be sure to let me know so I can pray for you too.



Consider yourself tagged - go blog about your fears, and how you intend to fight them.

Have a Happy Manic Monday!

Word Association

Idea supplied by Unconscious Mutterings at
http://subliminal.lunanina.com/

I say ... and you think ... ?

  1. Loneliness :: sadness
  2. Luckily, I'm not lonely. Too few people, especailly our young people, don't enjoy spending time alone. How can you know who you are if you are never alone with your thoughts?
  3. Traffic :: idiots
  4. I live in a resort area, but the idiots often times are the locals. You have to drive slower during the summer to accomodate the tourists who aren't sure where they're going. Oh wait, some of the motorcyclists are idiots who think we are all in their way and that they shouldn't have to tolerate those of us who drive in "real" cars.
  5. Chaos :: noise
  6. Too much noise equates to chaos, in my mind.
  7. Burp :: rude
  8. If you're not family, keep it to yourself.
  9. 500 :: dollars
  10. That would pay the rest of my bills this month.
  11. Movie :: drama
  12. I usually wait until they come on TV.
  13. Coma :: lost
  14. Where are they? Hopefully, those in comas are being entertained by angels.
  15. Bark :: tree
  16. Hmmm, no comment.
  17. Stare :: wierd
  18. Ever run into one of those people who NEVER stops looking you in the eye? Wierd. My oldest daughter who is a nurse, believes these wierd starers may have used a few too many drugs and thus have this wild eyed stare that they can't control.
  19. Angelina :: cool
  20. Jolie, that is. Great actress, great activist.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Entrecard Inbox Feed

How to place an Entrecard Inbox feed into your blog's sidebar.

Several sites are offering use of their widgets to create a "you drop, I link" feature for entrecard droppers.

I have found a site that does it free, without forcing you to link to their site.

I am using the "classic" wordpress theme, so these instructions are for actually editing the html of my template. If you are using the new blogger, you can just follow the directions on adding a javascript widget after you get the code.


The "You drop, I link" feature of this can be misleading, because the links in the feed are coming directly from your inbox at Entrecard and will change according to droppers each day.

Here's how to do it...

First, go to Feed2JS... This link will open in a new window...
http://itde.vccs.edu/rss2js/build.php

Now, go to your Entrecard website and click on "Dashboard."

At the top of the page you will see images of the websites in your inbox. To the right, you should see the little rss image. Hover over that image with your mouse pointer, right-click, and then click on "copy the url address."

Now go back to Feed2JS and "paste" the url into the first URL box: web address of the rss feed. *You can also paste content by pressing the "ctrl" button and the letter "v" on your keyboard - at the same time.

That's basically it, you're done. You can also change some of the parameters of the feed by changing the default values.

Mine is set to:

  • show channel "title"

  • number of items to display "0" (shows all available - did not change)

  • show item descriptions "30" shows the first 30 characters of description

  • show item posting date "no"

  • open links in new window "yes" (this makes it easier to reciprocate the droppers



Now click on "Preview" to make sure it looks okay, then click on "Generate Javascript." Copy the code and then paste it into your sidebar - as a widget on the new blogger, or as pasted into your template under the "sidebar" division.

Now, back to dropping I must go...

Gold Rush turns to Oil Rush

Arctic Map

The modern day "gold rush" is the "oil rush" because it is believed that 25% of the world's oil is beneath the ice in the Arctic Ocean, and it is also believed that the North Pole could melt very soon leaving access to the oil wide open.

Several countries are trying to stake their claim.

Last September, the Northwest Passage was actually clear briefly, due to the big melt.

Scientists now agree that there is a 50/50 chance that it open again this year, much quicker than the original natural global warming trend forecast.

It is also believed that the human contribution to global warming has sped up the process.

There is a division of the United Nations which controls what can happen in this territory. It belongs to no single nation because it is beyond the 200 mile mark of jurisdiction.

The Arctic Ocean's seabed may hold billions of gallons of oil and natural gas—up to 25 percent of the world's undiscovered reserves, according to U.S. Geological Survey estimates—leading some experts to call the region the next Saudi Arabia.

* National Geographic

Last summer (2007), the Russians actually used a minisub to plant their flag on the ocean floor, about 2 1/2 miles beneath the North Pole.

Canada has opened a new military base there.

Denmark and the USA are researching to see if the seabed is an extension linked to their lands.

Flag planting doesn't work today and land extension claims may not work either.

It will be interesting to see what happens next.

* Learn more at the United Nations Environment Program

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Dobson attacks Obama

I found out the real reason James Dobson attacked Obama's speech...

and I quote from that speech by Obama...

Even if we did have only Christians in our midst, if we expelled every non-Christian from the United States of America, whose Christianity would we teach in the schools? Would it be James Dobson's or Al Sharpton's?


From WashingtonMonthly.com

Obama certainly is proving his wisdom regarding faith and government.

I haven't declared my support for either candidate yet. Still waiting...

James Dobson Doesn't Speak for Me .com

James Dobson

How long will Christians continue to listen to utter nonsense voiced by self-professed leaders such as James Dobson?

Apparently, and HOPEFULLY, not much longer.

This week, James Dobson attacked a speech made by Obama in 2006. Dobson claimed that Obama "deliberately" distorted the Bible "to fit his own worldview -- his own confused theology."

HOGWASH!

Frank Schaeffer, a former "partner" of Dobson's who believed in the "cause," believes that Dobson's attack on Obama will actually "HELP" him.

Dobson is one of the Evangelical religious right old guard. He's to the right what Nader is to the left. ...Many evangelicals still fear him and so won't denounce his posturing power-plays but they also despise him. ... they say unequivocally that Dobson's time has passed.


Schaeffer's editorial...

The church, which to Christians means the "body of Christ" is NOT following the teachings of Christ.

The church, at least the "evangelical" church, has tunnel visioned their focus onto just two issues, abortion and homosexuality, while allowing the numbers of homeless people to rise, allowing the hungry to be even more hungry, allowing countless numbers of children to go to bed at night without hope - some of them simply hoping that their one pair of shoes will make it through another rainy day.

I'm tired of it. So tired that I'm not even angry any more, just terribly, terribly sad.

When will we start taking care of the less fortunate in America as Jesus taught us to do?

When will we start taking care of the planet as good stewards of this magnificent world?

When will we help usher in an administration who actually "cares" about its citizenry?

If you are a church-going Christian Protestant, and your pastor starts quoting James Dobson and defending him from the pulpit, you had better start searching your soul and the Bible for guidance in this matter. If you can't help enlighten your pastor, then you should take whatever action is necessary to be in a true fellowship of believers AND followers of Christ.

Jesus' words alone should be enough for us to know how we are to behave, and what we are to be busy doing... unless we want to hear these words below when we answer for our actions...

Matthew 25:41-46 (Young's Literal Translation Bible)

Then shall he say also to those on the left hand, Go ye from me, the cursed, to the fire, the age-during, that hath been prepared for the Devil and his messengers; for I did hunger, and ye gave me not to eat; I did thirst, and ye gave me not to drink; a stranger I was, and ye did not receive me; naked, and ye put not around me; infirm, and in prison, and ye did not look after me. `Then shall they answer, they also, saying, Lord, when did we see thee hungering, or thirsting, or a stranger, or naked, or infirm, or in prison, and we did not minister to thee? `Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say to you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of these, the least, ye did it not to me. And these shall go away to punishment age-during, but the righteous to life age-during.'

Monday, June 23, 2008

McCain Waking Up

Finally, McCain shows not only some interest in the economy, specifically the high price of gas, but he is actually coming up with some incentives to help move us out of this horrible era in the history of oil...

PHOENIX (Reuters) - John McCain will push on Monday for car makers to build more environmentally friendly vehicles, threatening new legislation if they do not comply and proposing tax breaks to encourage consumers to buy "cleaner" cars.


Read the Full Story here.

Free Antivirus Software

First off, regarding AVG Free Edition...

Those of you who use AVG free may have noticed that they want you to pay for the upgrade to version 8. However, there is a way around it. You must uninstall the old version before downloading the new free version.

But wait...

I stumbled onto a great blogger who has covered literally ALL of the ups and downs, and pros and cons, of using AVG.

You might want to look at his blog before deciding what to do.

He also has listed options for other free antivirus software programs.

Needless to say, I have bookmarked this great blog!

Grand Stream Dreams - written by Claus Valca - Windows sysadmin and project manager.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Ignorance scares me?

Ignorance scares me?
The other day as I was driving, I tuned into Neal Boortz' radio show - for a few minutes. That's all I could take of him.

Boortz, a libertarian who doesn't believe in global warming, has a call-in show. A listener called in to ask Boortz what was wrong with people believing in global warming? In other words, what harm does it do even if Boortz and those who think it's a scam, are right?

Boortz' reply was simply - "Because ignorance scares me."

Hmmm. Let's try that again. The listener asked again and got the same reply, which was not an answer to his question.

Too often these days, when you "get" a egotistical, always right, know-it-all person with a question they actually have no rational response to, they just insult someone or make a totally childish comment delivered quite profoundly to hopefully shut up the non-thinking world of listeners who form their opinions based on what they hear on the radio or through other media. Boortz is good at that.

What harm indeed?

We are to be good stewards of this planet. Whether you believe in God and the laws of the universe He set forth, or whether you believe in karma, most of us know that we reap what we sow.

How terrible is it that we cannot drink the water without treating it chemically?

How sad are the unbelievable numbers of asthma sufferers?

How devastating are the number of cancer deaths?

If you plant a garden in your yard, do you not nurture it and protect it from outside perils that would take away your harvest? Of course you do!

Is this planet not the garden of humans? I say it is.

Let's take care of it, in spite of people like Boortz.

By the way, ignorance scares me too, especially when their ignorance is being broadcast for millions to hear.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Girls need love

Teen girls today seem to be dangerously lacking in self-esteem and love.

Here's proof..

Gloucester, Massachusetts reports that several girls aged 16 and under have made a pact to get pregnant and raise their babies together.

Normally, the high school has about 4 pregnancies a year.

Now they have 17 according to Principal Sullivan.

Some of the girls reacted to the news they were pregnant with high fives and plans for baby showers, Sullivan said. One of the fathers "is a 24-year-old homeless guy," Sullivan told the magazine.


Personally, I advocate smaller schools to create a sense of community and accountability, obviously something these girls have created for themselves. They feel unloved and lost, and they decided to do something about it.

Why are we surprised?

They are children. They do not have the wisdom to see the folly of their decisions. I am not surprised by their actions.

Teachers are so overwhelmed with red tape and paperwork that they don't have time to create relationships with all of their students. Think about the sheer outrageous number of students a high school teacher has each day.

Teacher's pets are the only ones prospering from the current public education system.

Today's technology can offer high schools everything they need without the extremely large schools we have become accustomed to. The large schools are not working. Dropout figures support this.

How do we fight the government?

How do we get small community schools for our children?

How do we do it??!!??

Full Story at CNN

Force Oil Companies to Drill

Press Release from the congress' global warming website announcing the new bill to FORCE oil companies to drill or pay.

GlobalWarming.House.Gov...

Friday, June 20, 2008
Two pieces of legislation to achieve this goal were introduced today: the Responsible Ownership of Public Lands Act and The Responsible Federal Oil and Gas Lease Act of 2008.

Democratic Caucus, view the bill...


The Responsible Ownership of Public Lands Act would assess a fee on land energy companies have leased but are not using for production. This fee will escalate if leases go unused over the course of several years.

Exerpts:

WASHINGTON – House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel, Rep. Maurice Hinchey, Chairman Edward J. Markey and Chairman Nick Rahall today announced plans to introduce legislation that will help lower gas prices by compelling oil companies to utilize the 68 million acres onshore and offshore that are being leased by big oil companies, but not used to produce energy. The members were also joined by Reps. John Yarmuth and Peter Welch.


Currently, oil companies are not producing oil or gas on the nearly 68 million acres of federal land already under their control. Offshore, big oil is producing on only about 20 percent of the acres they hold, while onshore, companies are producing on less than 30 percent of the acres they hold. These unused areas could produce an additional 4.8 million barrels of oil and 44.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas each day, nearly double current domestic oil production.


“... By stalling energy production, these major energy corporations are cheating the American people out of a domestic oil and natural gas supply, causing prices to unfairly and unnecessarily soar at the pump. The federal government has made tens of millions of acres available for oil and gas development. It's the energy companies that are refusing to produce and now we will make them pay if they continue to refuse to increase our domestic supply.”



“Big Oil seems more concerned with pumping up prices than pumping more oil,” said Markey. “When Big Oil already has tens of millions of acres available to them right now, it’s cynical of them to come to Congress and ask for more drilling territory. This is a drilling decoy. With gas prices increasing by the day, it’s time for Big Oil to produce or pay.”


“It's time for oil companies to use it or lose it,” added Emanuel. “These companies have access to millions of acres and there is nothing stopping Big Oil from using this land to produce energy.”


The House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming was formed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to increase the visibility and priority given to America's oil dependence and global warming challenges. It is chaired by Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-MA) and will actively explore the solutions, science and progress on these pressing issues during the 110th Congress.

Drilling for oil

Here's the propaganda pitch..

Everyone is talking about drilling for more oil in North America. Most people seem to think that more land needs to be released, but that's not the whole truth.


Here's the truth...

The problem is that the oil companies already have leases on federal land and are NOT drilling on them.


According to a hearing aired on c-span last week, and a briefly covered spot by CNN a couple of days ago, only 4,000 out of 17,000 previously released "grids" are actually being utilized in the gulf coast.

Why aren't they drilling?

Apparently, the oil companies want to be able to buy up the leases, and then not use them. Why should they?

They're the ones benefitting from these high gas prices.

Apparently, the government needs to add some conditions to these land leases before the big US oil companies are allowed to lease them. The leased land MUST be drilled for oil.

Their argument is that not every "grid" will produce oil, but how will we know if we don't even try? They cite the cost of exploration as another reason they haven't chosen to USE the land grids. Certainly they can afford to explore and research these grids.

So why did they lease them if they weren't planning to utilize them?

It's time we start a grassroots bipartisan effort to get to the TRUTH about the oil prices, the US oil resources, and the big oil companies.

Frankly, I'm tired of hearing one party blame the other party.

Here's where my party loyalties lie - I'm an AMERICAN. Plain and simple.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Flirting

I just joined MyLot.com the other day and I have found it quite fun to answer some of the questions over there. You can even earn a little money if you participate regularly. You earn from referrals too. Plus, it's a good way to discover new topics for blogging.

I answered a question about flirting and thought I would share it here...

QUESTION:
Flirt flirt flirt.... why do people flirt?? Is it because you're attracted to someone or its just being friendly?


ANSWER:

If a person is actually flirting, then it's because they're interested or want you to think they are. Since I'm a female, I can only respond as to how a female might flirt. Everybody is different though.

Flirting is a combination of things, not just one.

A smile and a wink can be flirting.

Conversation is usually just being friendly unless they "enter your space."

Hanging around you for no apparent reason is a clear sign they want your attention - they're flirting.

Asking you silly questions just to get you to talk to them is another clear sign of flirting. A simple response to your question or comment is not necessarily flirting, it depends on the answer and how they act during the response.

Sometimes flirting happens just because a person wants or needs the attention that flirting can bring. A stroke of the ego, especially when someone else has just made them feel inadequate in some way.

When it comes to women, flirting can be an attack on your girlfriend and not really flirting with you at all! Yep, we can be mean.

Join us at MyLot.com

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Indian Prayer for Earth

To The Great Spirit,

Give us hearts to understand;

Never to take from creation's beauty more than we give;
never to destroy wantonly for the furtherance of greed;

Never to deny to give our hands for the building of earth's beauty;
never to take from her what we cannot use.

Give us hearts to understand

That to destroy earth's music is to create confusion;
that to wreck her appearance is to blind us to beauty;

That to callously pollute her fragrance is to make a house of stench;
that as we care for her she will care for us.

We have forgotten who we are.
We have sought only our own security.
We have exploited simply for our own ends.
We have distorted our knowledge.
We have abused our power.

Great Spirit, whose dry lands thirst,
Help us to find the way to refresh your lands.

Great Spirit, whose waters are choked with debris and pollution,
help us to find the way to cleanse your waters.

Great Spirit, whose beautiful earth grows ugly with misuse,
help us to find the way to restore beauty to your handiwork.

Great Spirit, whose creatures are being destroyed,
help us to find a way to replenish them.

Great Spirit, whose gifts to us are being lost in selfishness and corruption,
help us to find the way to restore our humanity.

Oh, Great Spirit,
whose voice I hear in the wind,
whose breath gives life to the world,
hear me;
I need your strength and wisdom.

May I walk in Beauty.

From The Peoples' Paths

Monday, June 16, 2008

Divided we Fail

Divided We Fail
"A house divided against itself cannot stand."

Do you know who spoke of this idea - "divided we fail" - 150 years ago today?

It was Abraham Lincoln on June 16, 1858.

As of today, 300 members of Congress – far more than half – have signed the Divided We Fail pledge to work together in a bipartisan manner to deliver affordable health care and long-term economic security to all Americans.

End partisan gridlock in Washington.

See if your legislator has signed the pledge...
Click Here.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Vision Weeps

Shhh
An alphabet poem isn't really a poem, but I enjoy doing them for some reason. Each word in the poem starts with the next letter of the alphabet.

Alphabet poem on the negative effects of TV and movie violence on our children...


anger breeds complacent deranged evil foes
going hopelessly into jail
keeping love marooned
never organizing peaceful quests
robbing starved teens until vision weeps
x-rated youthful zealots

Free Blogger Templates

Discovered a blog today that offers some really cool free blogger templates. Most of them are on the feminine side, but a couple of them are generic.

She also has a few for sale at quite unbelievably low prices, plus she will customize for only a couple of bucks, literally.

She's a new blogger, so be sure to check her out and make her feel welcomed.

http://grumpy-cow.com/

Friday, June 13, 2008

Tim Russert, American Hero

Tim Russert
Who knew the death of a journalist could affect me so profoundly?

I have always admired Tim Russert, mainly because I felt I could trust him. I always sought out his opinion on everything that was making the headlines. He never let me down.

Hearing more about him and his life, I am just awestruck that we still have, or had, men like him in these United States.

His Father, now retired, was a sanitation worker in Buffalo, New York, who worked two shifts to provide for his family.

Tim Russert never forgot his roots or his God. That's part of what made him special. But more importantly, he remained objective and simply delivered the information we needed to make responsible judgments.

Even though he was my age, he was so much like my Father... a man of honor, integrity and true patriotism. So close to Father's Day too. How sad for us newsaholics. I will miss his face.

Who will take his place? The only other journalist who has my trust is Charlie Gibson on the ABC news, unless you count Walter Cronkite and Tom Brokaw, both retired.

Hopefully new and rising young journalists will follow Russert's lead and bring objective reporting and respect back to the forefront of the news.

Rest in Peace, Tim Russert, and thank you for being an American hero.

God bless Tim Russert's family.

Ultimate Tea Diet

Wulong Tea or oolong tea - have you heard of it?

Apparently I'm out of the loop on this one, but supposedly it can help you lose weight. It's been covered on Good Morning America and other TV shows, but I missed it.

According to Angela Chang at ColonZone.com, who suggests you start with 7 to 10 cups of this healthy tea per week, studies have shown that WuLong tea can help:

- Diabetes
- Acne and Eczema
- Allergies
- Infections
- Cavities
- Weight Gain and Obesity
- Reducing the effects of smoking
- Increasing metabolism
- Helping digestion
- Reduce risk of heart disease

According to Gary Gause of
DragonWaterTea.com,
A study was conducted by the University of Tokushima School of Medicine along with several other Japanese universities involving 11 Japanese women who consumed either water, green matcha tea, or oolong tea after a meal. Oolong tea appeared to increase energy expenditure by 10%, green tea by 4%, and water not at all.

So while green tea is still best for fighting cancer, it does seem that oolong tea can help us lose weight.

Obviously you need to eat healthy and exercise, there is no magic pill or tea that works all by itself! (If only there was!)

Luckily, I've found a place that sells Formosa Oolong tea (also known as Wulong tea) along with many other healthy teas and things... right here.


There's also a book: "The Ultimate Tea Diet"
How Tea Can Boost Your Metabolism, Shrink Your Appetite, and Kick-Start Remarkable Weight Loss, By Mark Ukra, who was on ABC's "The View" today. You can visit his website here.

Lucky Friday the 13th

Good Luck
I'm not superstitious at all, and maybe even a little rebellious when it comes to Friday the 13th. I am determined to have good luck today.

No one knows for sure where the bad luck day originated. Here are a few of the legends.

There were 13 steps to the guillotine.

There were 13 people at the Lord's Last Supper (Judas being number 13).

Jesus was killed on a Friday (some say Friday the 13th).


Whatever the reason, until recent years, hotels have renamed the 13th floor either by skipping the number altogether or by using the 13th floor for something other than hotel guests. Other large buildings have done the same.

Considering the bad luck weather the world has had recently, today is just another day and couldn't be any worse than what has just transpired, especially this past week in the US where the weather has claimed lives.

There have been floods from Missouri to Wisconsin, California and North Carolina fires, and snow in Washington state.

More than 50 tornadoes were reported on Wednesday across Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota, some accompanied by baseball-sized hail.

The heat wave from Georgia to New York which has also caused death.

Hopefully today will pass quietly with no extreme weather.

Happy Friday the 13th!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Maybe I am the circus

lake
Today I was browsing through some of my old blog posts and realized how totally unrelated most of my topics are. I have so many labels - it's ridiculous!

So I guess I may be the one to blame for feeling like I live in a circus. Yeah, the world of politics, religion and media certainly facilitates this premise, but my mind seems to throw down on almost every topic in the world!

Occasionally I write a post just because I have found something interesting online and I want an easy way to find it again, such as the garden in a bottle post. Bookmarks are great, but they don't let you actually post your own commentary on the bookmark. Besides, I have accumulated so many bookmarks that I rarely even look at them.

I have to admit though, re-reading old posts also shows me where my mind was at the time. I like to remind myself of things that I feel passionate about, and that's an easy thing to do after blogging a couple of years.

Well, back to the circus!

The photo is of the lake across the street from my home. The serenity of the lake and the fowl that frequent it are things that nurture my serenity when the circus is too chaotic.

Grow a Garden in a Bottle - wikiHow


How to Grow a Garden in a Bottle


from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

A bottle can be recycled to function as a miniature greenhouse. This is a great project for class or a home craft during vacation time. It is creative, easy and fun to make. The result can make for a unique decoration and a way to keep your green thumb busy through the wintertime.

Steps


  1. Select a good bottle or a jar. The bottle should be large enough to allow room for plants to grow. Clean it and allow the bottle to dry thoroughly before using it. The larger the opening, the easier it'll be to maintain the garden.
  2. Turn the bottle onto its side. This will form the base of the bottle garden.
    • If the jar or container has a large enough opening or is not stable on its side, you can keep it facing up.

  3. Place pebbles and sand on the base of the bottle. You can use a small spoon through the mouth of the bottle to add the pebbles and sand and move them around. This will provide a good drainage base for the plants. Wet the sand before putting it in place. Do not underestimate the importance of good drainage, as the bottle does not have drainage holes and wet substrate can lead to fungus issues.
    • Adding a thin layer of activated charcoal on top of the drainage layer will minimize any smell caused by decomposition within the bottle.[1]
    • An additional thin layer of sphagnum moss will prevent the soil from settling into the drainage layer.[2]

  4. Cover the sand and pebbles with soil. The soil should be good quality and pre-dampened. If you accidentally get soil on the sides of the bottle, obscuring the view, you can tie gauze or cotton to the end of a pencil and reach in to wipe off the soil.
  5. Plant the garden. Choose seeds of small indoor plants. Place the seeds in the soil using tweezers, a long, thin stick (if you have a steady hand) or chopsticks. Put the seeds in different spots to make it an interesting arrangement.
    • Bottle gardening lends itself well to plants which require a good deal of humidity (e.g. tropical plants) because the bottle will trap moisture.[3]
    • Do not mix plants with different requirements, especially in terms of water. Growing a thirsty plant next to a cactus will make for difficult maintenance.
    • You can also make an aquatic bottle garden (shown in a previous step).

  6. Watch the plants grow. Tend to them as they mature. The plants will need air and moisture. Be sure to perforate the lid or cap of the bottle or jar, or don't put it on at all. Use a water sprayer to put moisture into the bottle. Only water when no condensation is observed on the glass--it's always better to under water than over water to prevent the growth of fungus or mold.[4]


Tips


  • You may choose to cover the bottle or jar to prevent evaporation. If you are doing this as a class project, test what happens to bottles that are covered and bottles that are uncovered.


Warnings


  • Do not place the bottle in full sun. This miniature ecosystem can heat up too quickly and burn the plants or your fingers! (Don't leave it in the dark all the time either.)
  • Be careful what sorts of bottles or jars you use. Be mindful of the environment that you get them from. A discarded bottle (i.e. one you find on the side of the road) may be toxic, poisonous, or otherwise harmful to you. Always exercise prudence and caution with waste materials. Be sure to clean reused materials thoroughly, and sanitize anything the bottle or jar may have come into contact with, including yourself.


Things You'll Need


  • Bottle or jar; decent size to allow the miniature garden to grow
  • Sand and/or pebbles
  • Rich soil
  • Seeds
  • Tweezers or a long, thin stick
  • Sprayer


Related wikiHows




Sources and Citations


  • Adapted from Marguerite Ickis, Handicrafts and Hobbies: For Pleasure and Profit, (1948); text in the public domain.

  1. http://www.thegardenhelper.com/terrarium.html

  2. http://www.thegardenhelper.com/terrarium.html

  3. http://www.thegardenhelper.com/terrarium.html

  4. http://www.thegardenhelper.com/terrarium.html



Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Grow a Garden in a Bottle. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

Grow a Garden in a Bottle - wikiHow

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Life is Colourful Contest

I find many contests offered by some of the coolest bloggers with really great prizes, but this new one at Life is Colourful surpasses them all. (See the list of prizes below.)

If you're interested in blogging and making money online, you should take a look at this site. Monthly earnings are posted so we can actually see which money making venture is paying off and how frequently it pays.

There are also many webmaster tips which cover all sites, not just blogs.

Take a look, and while you're there, don't forget to enter the latest contest!

LINK: Contest Page

LINK: Life is Colourful Home Page

Here are the prizes...

Colourful Blog Anniversary Contest - Win Over $3000 in Cash and Prizes
Blogging Tools & Products, Webmaster Resources, Memberships

- A product to help you making money: Super Affiliate Blogger and Wordpress Adsense Theme by Easywordpress ($194 value - 2 x $97)
- Two-year subscription to GoStats Pro [One of the web’s leading traffic stats providers] by GoStats ($180 value - 2 x $90)
- Five One-Year VIP Memberships to CreateBanner.com by Xavier Media ($175 value - 5 x $35)
- 100,000 [One hundred thousand] Tnx points by Tnx.net ($125 value)
- Two One-Hour Consultation Sessions by TheUniversiryKid ($100 value - 2 x $50)
- "Building An Internet Business From Scratch - Making $1,000 After 24 Hours" DVD by Marcus Hochstadt ($100 value)
- Two copies of Direct Response Templates for Salesletters and Salesstickies by Carl "Kidblogger" ($74 - 2 x $37)
- Two Copies of "TO DO List Software" by Fruitfultime ($60 value - 2 x $30)
- One 30 minutes of blog consultation by The Net Fool ($40 value)
- Blog Bundle Pack 2 [Specially designed for Bloggers] by 1 Cool File ($20 value)

Cash Prizes

- $30 cash prize by Capitalist Guide ($30 value)
- $25 cash prize by Autoline Reviews ($25 value)
- $25 cash prize by Health and Fitness Center ($25 value)
- $20 cash prize by Leisa Watkins ($20 value)
- $20 cash prize by Travel Tips ($20 value)
- $20 cash prize by New Homes Section ($20 value)
- $20 cash prize by Social Networking Sites ($20 value)
- $20 cash prize by Quality Vista ($20 value)

All prizes shall be given through Paypal

Books and eBooks

- Three copies of "Work Smart, Get Rich!" eBook Donated by The Net Fool ($45 value - 3 x $15)
- Autographed Copy of "The 5 Lessons a Millionaire Taught Me About Life and Wealth" book by Leisa Watkins

Each participant of this contest will get dollar eBook from TheUniversiryKid along with his consultation time.

Advertising Space

- Four 3-months textlink at Life is Colourful ($360 value - 4 x $90)
- Four 3-months textlink at Finance Blog ($180 value - 4 x $45)
- One Greenland Country Ad Space at Buy a Nation ($125 value)
- Full Set of Advertising Space by Roman Dock ($125 value)
Two 125 x 125 ($20 value - 2 x $10)
Three 468x60 ($30 value - 3 x $10)
Five Textlinks ($50 value - 5 x $10)
One Full Review ($25 value)
- Four 3-months 125 x 125 banner slots at Article Rewrite ($120 value)
- Ten Featured Links at Piggy Web Directory ($100 value)
- Ten Textlinks worth $10 bid each at BYDY Link Bid Directory ($100 value)
- Four Express Link Submissions Forever at Mad Mouse Directory ($51.80 value - 4 x $12.95)
- Two Featured Link Submissions for One year at Mad Mouse Directory ($49.90 value - 2 x $24.95)
- One 125 x 125 at Winning the Web by Gyutae Park ($50 value)
- One Full Blog Review at Life is Colourful ($50 value)
- Five Featured Links at Directories.bz ($50 value) * These apply to directory submissions only, Flippable.
- Three Featured Links for Six Months at Massive Net Links Directory ($30 value)
- Three Featured Links for Six Months at Internet Stromer Directory ($30 value)
- Three Featured Links for Six Months at Internet Ahead Directory ($30 value)
- One 125 x 125 at Blogging Fingers ($30 value)
- One 125 x 125 at New Homes Section ($30 value)
- One 125 x 125 at Sueblimely ($30 value)
- One 125 x 125 at Life is Colourful ($30 value)
- One Full Blog Review at Finance Blog ($30 value) * These apply to Finance service reviews, Flippable.
- One 125 x 125 at Dot Com Mogul ($25 value)
- Two 125 x 125 at Vincent ($20 value)
- One Full Blog Review at Lightnings Blog World (value $20)
- One 125 x 125 at The WWW Blog ($15 value)

Entrecard Credits

- 2500 Entrecard Credits by Life is Colourful
- 2000 Entrecard Credits by Sueblimely
- 1000 Entrecard Credits by Lightning Blog World
- 500 Entrecard Credits by Vincent

Total: 6,000

Unicorn seen in Italy

unicorn
Do you believe in unicorns?

Now we possibly know the source behind the legends of the mythical unicorn.

It could have been as simple as a deer with the anomaly of a horn in the center of his head, such as the one shown in the picture.

ROME — A deer with a single horn in the center of its head — much like the fabled, mythical unicorn — has been spotted in a nature preserve in Italy, park officials said Wednesday.


Full Story at Fox News

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Aborted baby says NO

Finley, aborted baby
A couple whose children are born with kidney disease decided to abort after having one child die shortly after birth, and another child seriously ill.

But the baby did not go gentle into that good night.

He survived the abortion.

Fortunately, his parents are overjoyed at his survival and excited that even though one of his kidneys is damaged, he should live a normal life.

Talk about being called into being!

This little man will definitely survive the circus of life.

God Bless little Finley!

Mother's anger turns to delight after her baby survives an abortion | Mail Online

Called into being

Today is the last day of this year - for me, as tomorrow is my birthday. Actually, if I were in Australia, today would be my birthday. I will force myself to celebrate the day that I entered this world, because for so long I have not really thought much about birthdays. That doesn't mean I have to go out for dinner or anything, I will just remember to be in awe that the Creator called me into being for a specific purpose and I will celebrate life as a tribute to the Creator - because He doesn't make mistakes.

So far today I have had to confront my limitations as a perfectionist, thanks to a very insightful blog post by Meg on perfectionism... (Perfectionists Anonymous)

Funny how the universe sends you what you need sometimes. I needed to re-evaluate my recovery process, which is ever constant, and to focus on helping my daughter who has the same tendency.

Then I read Mel's post which asked
What is your idea of God? Do you believe that there is a God who created everything and who watches over all His creations? How do you relate to Him?
(Do You Believe In God?)

I haven't answered that one yet, because it is difficult to express my answer with just a few words. Actually, I am rarely a person of few words, at least when it comes to writing them down.

I am thankful to have found these two posts today, a fitting reminder to "think" and not just exist. This new year will be my best year yet, I'm sure of it. I have much to be thankful for and I look forward to experiencing all that God has for me.

I will learn to ask, then seek the answer, and then knock on the door so that I may enter into the blessing. Previously, I thought that any one of these things was all I needed to do, but lately I have come to realize that you must do all three things: ask, seek, knock.

Luke 11:9-10 and I say to you, Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you; for every one who is asking doth receive; and he who is seeking doth find; and to him who is knocking it shall be opened.


God bless and have a great June 9th!

Friday, June 06, 2008

Surges, Spikes and Sinks

It's 4pm Eastern time and yet today has already proven to be a day of shocking extremes that have negative effects on our already declining economic situation.

Oil has surged another $11

May's jobless rate spiked to 5.5%, the largest monthly spike in 20 years.

Once Wall Street heard the news, the Dow sank 300 points.

One very good thing happened to me today. It was the last day of school, a small high school for students throughout our county, who are planning on pursuing a degree in medicine, engineering, law, education, theatre, dance, art, or digital arts. My daughter has one of those coveted spots, but there is no bus transportation and we have been buying gas to the tune of over $100 a week. We live on child support, my seasonal part-time job, my home business of web design (sometimes), and her part-time paycheck. Obviously, we are happy for the summer break.

Now we'll give that money to the light company because our heat pump has been running non-stop for nearly 48 hours due to the extreme heat (South Carolina), and the temp inside is still hovering at 88 degrees. My little tin can is old, not much insulation, and no trees for shade. Thank God for cold water and fans!

But we are among the fortunate. Our car is paid for and we have a roof over our heads. We are blessed.

Living in a tourist area I see homeless men often with their signs and pleas for work or help. I see people walking down the street with their bags of groceries because they have no car, or can't afford to use it. It is a sad situation.

Yes, I am blessed.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Neil Young - Changing the World

Neil Young
Neil Young, of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, has correctly admitted that songs don't change the world.

Young, now 62, is still singing and touring and hopefully still inspiring young minds. He had hoped to change the world with his music, but has since realized that music may inspire a few people, but it will certainly not change the world.

Young has partnered with Jonathan Goodwin to convert his 1959 car to operate on an electric battery.

"We're going to change the world; we're going to create a car that will allow us to stop giving our wealth to other countries for petroleum."


"The technology to make a practical and affordable electric car has been around for a long time," Goodwin said. "There are all sorts of ways of doing it and all sorts of ways to work out how to make it work on a national scale."


Hopefully, Young's mission to change the world will be furthered by the successful conversion of his car from gasoline fuel to power by electric battery.

Hopefully, one day soon, we can be a self-sufficient nation without dependency on governments that are not on the same page, and sometimes not even in the same book.

Full Story at CNN.com

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