Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Beware the danger of....

Famous meat market in Rome. Nutella candies can be purchased at the checkout
Last year 2019--although it seems like a decade ago--we took an old people bus trip to Rome. Had a grand time, and realized how important Nutella is to their economy. 

Walking along ancient streets, we discovered that Nutella in one form or another can be purchased just about everywhere. At the Vatican Official Gifts store, we could have bought Nutella that had been blessed by a priest. Not really, but it had a possibility of being true.

The question is: Who likes Nutella? My granddaughters do, in a major way.

Me after church on fast Sunday!!! Hahaha so true. I don't really go for the Nutella though more like chips

I love memes Click on the picture to see hundreds more!

This is enough for one person if they are a nuttella addict

My mom realized when she was making a grocery list today, my dad has 5 jars of Nutella in the pantry. FIVE!!

That's not Nutella... - meme
Where are these guys and how can I find them?
Advertising can be so misleading at times  |  NUTELLA; HOW IT'S ADVERTISED; HOW PEOPLE ACTUALLY EAT IT | image tagged in nutella,memes,funny,really fat girl | made w/ Imgflip meme maker
It happens.
 Having said this, let it be known that I have an unopened jar of Nutella in my cabinet. It will find its way to their house, very very soon.

10 best nutella recipes
Good stuff

Go out and buy some for yourself. Be sure to have a spoon at home on the counter, ready scoop up the food of the gods.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

I will wait upon the Lord.

Soar on wings of an eagle
Chris had never been known to be a “waiter”; instead he always threw himself headlong into many diverse adventures…here, there, here...He loved the adrenalin rush, the way it drove him. After that rush came his pride and carelessness.

Who and what Chris was then changed radically when he became a man whose greatest desire in life was to wait upon the Lord.  

Be intensediligent… …taking on the most mundane of tasks.  Wait upon the Lord…were the words running through his mind when the alarm bell rang.

“Take it, Chris!” cried out a fellow fireman.  At the clunk sound of hose thrown to him, adrenaline surged. Gripping the heavy hose tightly, Chris reminded himself ”Time to serve!”  as he raced into the blazing house.  

YouTube from movie "Fireproof". Video is about 4 min. long.

These underlined words above were provided by Delores every Wednesday as challenge to  bloggers who enjoy writing flash fiction, poems, prose, vignettes... Words are now being tossed at us by Elephant's Child  and River

The is a repost from May 15, 2015

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Memories bring back you.

In a time where it is too easy to forget the voices that sing to us, all of us absolutely must listen to the songs. 

Listen and let them sweep you away. Being swept away is a good thing.

How was this done? Check out this site: cut and paste  If you are a geeky computer guy who will understand what is being said, absolutely go there. Even if you aren't geeky, you will be amazed by  the process. So, there you go.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

What Their Eyes Saw

Nestlé Food advertisement, 1915.jpg
baby feeding
Available Dog Training Facility #dogged #TrainDogObedience

The time period for these children was early 1900s.

For a small amount of perspective at this moment, imagine you were born in 1900. When you are 14, World War I starts and ends on your 18th birthday with 22 million people killed. 

Later in the year, a Spanish Flu epidemic hits the planet and runs until you are 20. Fifty million people die from it in those two years. Yes, 50 million.

When you're 29, the Great Depression begins. Unemployment hits 25%, global GDP drops 27%. That runs until you are 33. The country nearly collapses along with the world economy. When you turn 39, World War II starts. You aren’t even over the hill yet.

When you're 41, the United States is fully pulled into WWII. Between your 39th and 45th birthday, 75 million people perish in the war and the Holocaust kills six million. 

At 52, the Korean War starts, and five million perish.

Approaching your 62nd birthday you have the Cuban Missile Crisis, a tipping point in the Cold War. Life on our planet, as we know it, could well have ended. Great leaders prevented that from happening.

At 64 the Vietnam War begins, and it doesn’t end for many years. Four million people die in that conflict.

As you turn 75, the Vietnam War finally ends. Think of everyone on the planet born in 1900. How do you survive all of that? A kid in 1985 didn’t think their 85-year-old grandparent understood how hard school was. Yet those grandparents (and now great grandparents) survived through everything listed above.

Perspective is an amazing art. Let’s try and keep things in perspective. Let’s be smart, help each other out, and we will get through all of this. In the history of the world, there has never been a storm that lasted. This too shall pass. - Author Unknown

What was your reaction when you read this? Did you know any brave people who experienced and survived such a large section of the 20th century?

My grandparents were part of all above. I did not ask them enough questions.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

He Ain't Heavy

I never really gave this song much thought, but could remember the first few words and then hum along with the rest. It was first sung by Neil Diamond. That basically how I do all songs.  Being a young adult and seeing nothing but the hopes, love and life ahead, this song didn't mean much to me.

I know this song has been done in different ways, by different artists. The recording and video below means more to me, at this stage of my life.

The lyrics? Can you hear them?  Understand them?  Here they are:

The road is long/ with many a winding turn
That leads us to who knows where/who knows when.
But I’m strong/strong enough to carry him.
He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother.

So on we go/his welfare is of my concern.
No burden is he to bear/we’ll get there.
For I know/he would not encumber me.
He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother.

If I’m laden at all/I’m laden with sadness
That everyone’s heart/isn’t filled with gladness
Of love for one another.

It’s a long, long road/from which there is no return
While we’re on the way to there/why not share
And the load/doesn’t weigh me down at all.
He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother

He’s my brother…He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother...

What do you remember of the 70s or 80s, when this song was making the rounds? Did you know the lyrics then? Did this speak to you? 

Addendum:  This was a song for many when it was released in 1970. Vietnam took many of our local boys from small farming communities where I grew up. Some came back, some didn't. When I hear this, the senior HS  pictures come to mind of those boys, their names. My cousin Billy didn't return.

Repost from 2014

Thursday, June 25, 2020

When Summer Ends

Amazon: $999

“This vegetarian lifestyle is against man,” Dina sighed, tugging at the weeds surrounding peas, tomatoes, and beans. Hot pain had formed in her lower back two tomato rows ago.

Dewy leaves now were dried in midday sun. Dina stretched, arching her back, standing to look around fields. People and friends just like her hard at work on summer harvest.  What life had been when all of this began…

Oh, the times Dina relished when she had whirled around nightly fires, sparks rising up into a black sky.  Fairies had danced upon her fingertips and elves had woven rainbows through her hair. Dina had laughed, swirling and loving all in a colorful world.

Now hippy life and love appeared less and less meaningful after three years. Totalitarianism ruled her world now, all black and white, with fires less,  and fairies gone.  Dropping the clumps of weeds to the ground and raising her chin high, Dina strode over the damp earth. I'm outta here.

All things come to an end.

This is a post from Summer 2015. Delores provided strange but challenging and fun words.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Who really cares?

A powerhouse
Eleanor Roosevelt was a powerhouse during FDR’s presidency. Her commitment to providing contributions to the military, their soldiers, their families should never be forgotten. 

She was active in securing in Women's Rights. She was an active part in working with League of Women Voters and the Women’s Trade Union League. She surrounded herself with politically astute women such as Molly Dewson.

You would not worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.  Eleanor Roosevelt

Each person, at some time or another, believe that people are looking at them with negative thoughts.  Not for sure, but they have been examined and judged, maybe.

It works like this: the 20-40-60 rule.

When at age 20, you worry about everything.  Am I too fat? Am I wearing the right clothes? Am I scrawny and weak? What about my acne? ….

I sure had those thoughts.  And then, at age 40, you do not care about what others think about you.

Okay, I wasn’t all that sure. 

But when at age 60, a big revelation dawns on you: Nobody was thinking about you in the first place.

Well, it took me long enough.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Reel 'er in.

Need something to happen that brings joy into your life? God gives us children. including teenagers, but this little fisherman?  Joy abounds. Joy leaps. 

Find joy in the smallest of places, for there is where the greatest treasures lie (along with a fish).

“Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough.”
― Emily Dickinson

“To get the full value of joy you must have someone to divide it with.”
Mark Twain

“Pan, who and what art thou?" he cried huskily.
"I'm youth, I'm joy," Peter answered at a venture, "I'm a little bird that has broken out of the egg.”
― J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

“Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song.”
― Pope John Paul II (Karol Wojtyła)

Where joy is found... site where thoughts about joy may be discovered.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Facing Down Evil

Dietrich Bonhoffer
Dietrich Bonhoffer
Face of Evil…those words present differently to everyone.

For a four year old? What does a four year old see as evil?  Maybe, just scary, which is plenty.

For teens?  Evil?  Would they recognize true evil beyond “American Horror Story”?

Ah, but for adults…adults see evil in its many forms. Evil comes in the form of amoral, sociopaths, psychopaths, and every other “path” in the world. Adults have the ability to sense evil coursing about them. Some adults choose to shake it off while others turn to face evil in its face. 

This is a time of great evil. 

Watching the sincere protests in the streets following the horrific murder of a man pleading for his life raises anger, no, rage at the death of this man . 

And then to see the following senseless destruction of property and people livelihoods tarnishes and displaces the righteous anger all should be experiencing.  These have distinctly different goals. Confusion remains.

Confusion can't be disregarded, but it can be pushed aside to recognize the most important evil of all: ignoring the value of each life

Lives matter. All lives. Lives of Black, Mexican, Native American, Asian, White, and, especially, Blue--no matter the race, each life changes history in some undefinable way.

The lives that were taken, lives that have been ignored, lives that are discounted or seen as useless---these lives cross race lines and mix into the soup of injustice.

Face evil. See it for what it is. Face it down.

"He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it." Martin Luther King, Jr.

Monday, June 15, 2020

Potluck in Old Walderren

potluck dinner
Potluck dinner in  some church, some where.

moratorium  now outlawed church potlucks in Old Walderren. The last one caused a flash fire when the Barbeque Pit exploded, sending miscellaneous pork bits and ribs, along with Bob’s Secret Ingredient (lots of whiskey) flaming sauce, flying over to Ol' Miz Guthrie’s tiny old house.

Ol' Miz Guthrie heard screaming coming her way, and then smelled the barbeque fire on her roof.  “Oh, Lordy, Lordy!  My house ‘s afire!”  As fast as a squirrel on a live wire, she scampered out the door, wringing her hands while the fire department extinguished the barbeque flickers of flame.

No damage done,  Ol' Miz Guthrie thanked everyone, shushing them away, and hurried back inside.  Looking around at her immaculate, nicely decorated home, she raced down the steps to her basement, which was packed with a fireproof chest of jewelry (oh, how she love nice expensive jewelry), and packs of one-hundred bills. 

Unbeknownst to the community, Ol' Miz Guthrie was quite a spendthrift made possible by her late husband’s last bank robbery in 1955 in Chicago.  I gotta out of this town.

The next day her brother Ralf showed up at night with a big van and they moved everything from the basement during the big school dance.  Just before she closed the front door, Old Miz Guthrie turned the old gas cooker on high, and tossed a burning dish towel through the door.
The town mourned for her. Damned BBQ sauce.

This is a repost from March 2015, Wednesday Words. Oh, Lordy, they are fun.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Time. Time. Time..

Passing Time
During these past almost three months, time seems to stretch from breakfast to dinner. Not that those two meals are just fine in themselves, but something to stimulate the sleepy, food-numbed mind would be nice.

Time. Time. Time.  That has a good rhythm and rhyme. Rhyme.

Robert Frost, e.e. cummings, WB Yeats, Maya Angelou, Carl Sandburg....and many other poets can provide creative thought during anything.

A poet's words can capture time and hold onto it just a bit. 

Time is the coin of your Life.

It is the only coin you have,
and only you can determine
how it will be spent.
Be careful
lest you let other people spend it for you. And when you spend it, spend it wisely so that you get the most for 
your expenditure.

Carl Sandburg

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. 

Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen. 
Mark Twain

Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment. 

As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death.
Leonardo da Vinci

The quality, not the longevity, of one's life is what is important.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

I've got a magic charm
That I keep up my sleeve
I can walk the ocean floor
And never have to breathe.

Life doesn't frighten me at all
Not at all
Not at all.

Life doesn't frighten me at all.

Maya Angelou

Do not think that I am so brilliant and creative enough to hunt for all these and compile them. Heck, no. I just happened on to this site. Good thing to pass on.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Heading to Las Vegas

Old Time Religion by Ernest Watson

I will be kind…I will smile…were Brenda’s thoughts, as she sat in the family pew, hands folded in her lap, back straight, and eyes focused on Pastor Ben.  No one will know my thoughts.  No one will suspect what I am thinking.

On her left side, her father was ‘amening’ almost in a rhythm, and Brenda had to force her feet from tapping 1…2…3 and hold…1…2…  Her grandmother was waving her hankie in a show of agreement.

Show?  Brenda pondered that word, looking around at other old ladies with their gray hair and dressy hats.  They too were waving their hankies, and some even dabbed at their eyes.

All the other young people were sitting in the back, passing notes, and giggling.  Their heads were bowed, but Brenda knew what they were doing. She was not allowed to sit there, per Grandma's suggestion. The young families were in the middle of the church, with their children.  Brenda could smell the Cheerios and Fruit Loops.

Her mother sat, quietly folding and unfolding the church bulletin.  Fold...2...3..  Mom's hands were red and worn; she had to prepare another dinner for the pastor and family, as well as her seven children. Every Sunday, it was dinner for someone. 

Her mother smiled at her, and briefly made eye contact. Mom never looks anyone in the eye.

That was when Brenda knew.  Her mother wanted to blast out of this church just as badly as Brenda. To escape.

What’ll we do?  Mom, what will we do? 

Her mother wrote a note to her father, which read about checking on the roast and get dinner ready for the pastor, and Brenda had to help.   Her father nodded, not breaking rhythm one bit.

They tore out of the parking lot.  As they drove past their house, Brenda turned to her mother.  Mom?  Mom?

Her mother smiled, lit up a cigarette, and sped up.  “We’re goin’ to Vegas, girl. I am done fixing dinners every single Sunday for each and every preacher passin' through town.”  Then they headed to the West, the whole 1,000 mile trip. 

Luggage in the back and radio cranked high with Janis Joplin, Brenda and Mom felt happy for the first Sunday in a long long time.

Dad would be at church for another two hours. Praise God.

I wrote this in 2013. This is pretty much the way Mom and I spent every single Sunday. With no help with cooking or cleaning up, she and I would gladly have done this. The memories repeated Sunday after Sunday are fresh, even 50 years later.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

The Journey to the South

Science is amazing, life is amazing. God, who created them all and set things in motion, is beyond amazing.

Snake migrating: A yearly gathering in Southern Illinois

Common names of some of the species you might encounter on or near Snake Road include:

Spiny Softshell
Northern Red-Bellied Snake
Spotted Salamander
Chorus Frog
Slimy Salamander

Broadheaded Skink
Eastern Hognose Snake
Red Milk Snake
Midland Water Snake
Western Ribbon Snake

Eastern Rough Green Snake
Eastern Garter Snake
Western Lesser Siren
Marbled Salamander
Small-Mouthed Salamander

Midwest Worm Snake
Central Newt
Zigzag salamander
Long-Tailed Salamander
Black Rat Snake
Cave Salamander

American Toad
Fowler's Toad
Blanchard's Cricket Frog
Northern Spring Peeper
Eastern Grey Treefrog

Black Racer
Green Frog
Southern Leopard Frog
Midland Brown Snake
Common Snapping Turtle

Stinkpot Turtle
Eastern Box Turtle
Ringneck Snake
Eastern Painted Turtle
Red-Eared Turtle

Northern Fence Lizard
 King Snake
Ground Skink
Western Cottonmouth
Five-Lined Skink

Western Earth Snake
Western Mud Snake
Diamond-Backed Water Snake

Notice that lizards and turtles are there as well, to snack on the baby snakes. Also, they would be lunch for snakes. 

My son is an entomologist who did his graduate work at University of Illinois, Champaign Urbana. One event he arranged for undergrads was to take them to view the "Annual Snake Migration in Southern Illinois". 

Sprout experience itenirary
I had never heard of the migration, thought it was something made-up. He described this with great enthusiasm and their one overnight campout went without any mishaps. 

He spoke of making another trip where hunters nailed dead squirrels on to  trees in this forest. This is now considered to be an urban myth, thankfully.

White oak snake, not poisonous

Snake migration is common in warmer seasons

Each of these videos is about 1 min and less. I hope you will take the time to see some slithering about.

Not every person shares an enthusiasm for such creatures. Fortunately, my son does and has taught us to appreciate them.  His primary focus is insects. He had two tarantulas which remained at our house for a few years. 

If a snake of any sort is within a few yards of me, I definitely would scamper away from it. Admire, appreciate, and wonder at snakes, I do. See them close up and personal, I do not.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Samuel through the Open Door

Nyce ZigBee Contact Sensor
The door swung open to Samuel's home, where his parents also lived. The Mommy dropped the groceries on the table and tossed Samuel into the playpen. “Be right back!” Mommy whisked out the door.

Samuel waited, listened. He had the time, the strength, and he could do this. Throwing the blue pacifier over the railing, Samuel hoisted his shwweet whittle weggies over the railing and did a practiced roll. With his hands up for balance, Samuel began the newly discovered walking power: stagger-stagger-wobble

‘Focus, man, focus!’ The words hammered in his 14 month brain. ‘Ignore the Cheerios under the couch!”

Samuel reached the spot where he nailed Grammie with projectile vomit. She was  saying, “Gwamma wuvs dose shwweeet whittle legees…” Blaaaagh, and she stopped. Good times.

Almost there, Samuel pictured the freedom:  chase the kitty, taste the flowers, squish mud. Such fine adventures, and he was almost there.

The Mommy swooped through the door and knocked over Samuel. She swept him up. “Mommy wuvs dose pwessus whittle laygees…”

Samuel tried to say, “Dammit woman! Can’t you speak the King’s English?” All that came out was a cry and some spit-up. The door swung shut.

Written 2012. Chronicles of Samuel blog site. 

Oh, how I love writing the unexpected.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Sand under Glass

Talent comes in many forms, in many mediums. In thinking about the artists over so many centuries, we must come to appreciate, admire them and their work. Music? Architecture? Painting?  So much talent.

This was the work of Kseniya Simonova in a Tribute to Princess Diana in Britain's Got Talent from October 2019. Her creations are so unusual and striking there is no description adequate enough.

As art and talent blend, we are privileged to be a part of their world.

Be surprised and enjoy.   After all, surprise and enjoyment is awfully important now.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

What the hell do you want now?

Prison Privatization Bill Locked Up By House Inaction – Michigan ...
I didn't do it.

Day 1---I Can Do This! Got enough food and wine to last a month.

Day 2---Opening my eighth bottle of wine. I fear wine supplies might not last.

Day 3---Strawberries: Some have 210 seeds, some have 235 seeds. Who knew??

Day 4---8:00 PM. Removed my day pajamas and put on my night pajamas.

Day 5---Today I tried to make hand sanitizer. It came out as Jell-O shots!

Day 6---I get to take the garbage out. I am SO excited. I can't decide what to wear.

Day 7---Laughing way too much at my own jokes!!

Day 8---Went to a new restaurant called "The Kitchen". You have to gather all the ingredients and make your own meal. I have no clue how this place is still in business.

Day 9---I put liquor bottles in every room. Tonight, I'm getting all dressed up and going bar hopping.

Day 10---Struck an conversation with a spider today. Seems nice. He's a web designer.

Day 11---Isolation is hard. I swear my fridge just said, "What the hell do you want now?"

Day 12---I realized why dogs get so excited about something moving outside, going for walks or car rides. I swear I barked at a squirrel. He laughed.

Day 13---If you keep a glass of wine in each hand, you can't accidently touch your face.

Day 14---Watched the birds fight over random bird seeds. The Cardinals led the Blue Jays, 3-1.

Day 15---Repeat.

Written by some clever people. 

Monday, May 25, 2020

So young. They were so young.

Hump Halsey flight crew, part of the 58th division,

This blurred photo showed a cluster of airmen, awfully young guys. But then, 1941 needed all the young guys that could be gathered. 
They are leaning on each other, arms draped over their shoulders. The eleven were a team of their own brothers.

But really look at them. What do you see? Who has a different expression?

My dad is in the back row on the right. He and his best buddy John were then and for the rest of their lives close friends. All of the eleven were about twenty-one years old.

Nose art on B-29 Superfortress "Little Gem"
Their plane was a B-29 Super Fortress, Organ Annie was its moniker, its sexy girl nose art. All B-29s had their own seductive, sensual lady draped across the nose. Sometimes, crews jumped up and slapped whatever part that could be reached. Those parts were mighty faded over time.

Enola Gay - Smithsonian Institute Archives
Museum  Enola Gay
Organ Annie and crew were based on the Mariana Islands at Tinian, along with hundreds or more of other B-29 Super Fortresses. They flew the CBI, China-Burma-India hump.

Dad spoke of one particular B-29 that was parked a distance from others and their crew and pilots had been sequestered from others. Their pilots were Paul W. Tibbets and co-pilot Robert Lewis, both of whom were in their late 20s when they flew the Enola Gay to drop the first atomic bomb.

The nose art was standard sexy women, but had been painted over with the words "Enola Gay". 

Look at the photo at the top, again. Ten of the crew were together, friends. One is is different. Notice the man on the middle row, far left. Captain Zeb was their pilot; he is looking down. All pilots wore aviator sunglasses.  

Like many pilots, Captain Zeb kept himself isolated, removed from his crew. Getting too friendly clouded their judgment. After all, he was an old guy, being twenty-two.

Video is about 20 minutes long.  I watched it twice, thinking about the men who flew in it, like my father.
About 7 minutes is worth watching.

Their missions changed history. Dad was a bay gunner in their plane. They flew 12 hours to drop incendiary bombs on industrial sites. Then it turned around to fly another 12 hours, stopping to refuel in China. The B-29 was credited with stopping the war. What they and Enola Gay did was to shorten and then end the war. (It is estimated that since the Japanese would not surrender and that the civilian population would be called to defend Japan, nearly 1 million in all would die.)

They were so young, all the men and women who fought in WW2.  

What do you think of my dad's crew of men? What about Captain Zeb?  

Oh, dear Lord, they were babies.


Friday, May 22, 2020

Remembering our Brave

Ye have slept on the ground before,

And started to your feet
At the cannon's sudden roar,
Or the drum's redoubling beat.The Day of Memories!—Remembering what?

The cannon's roar, the hissing of the shot?
The weary hospital, the prison pen?

The widow's tears, the groans of stalwart men?
The bitterness of fratricidal strife?
The pangs of death, the sharper pangs of life?

Nay, let us quite forget the whole of these

Upon our sacred Day of Memories.

by Amos Russel Wells

Downunder20 — More awesome pics of Klein Barfield... Source:...