I miss you Sam!!

I miss you Sam!!
I miss you Sam!!

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I'm Back -- With a Lovely Poem

It's been a frustrating, expensive day getting my computer repaired, but I'm back online so beware!

I found this beautiful winter poem and thought it might be a comfort to you. It was to me, and it's very well written.

I felt it really captured my own feelings about winter.


A poem by
Abigail Elizabeth McIntyre

SHIT, It's Cold !

The End

My Wish for You -- for Us in 2009

May peace break into your house and may thieves come to steal your
debts. May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet for $100 bills.
May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault
your lips! May your clothes smell of success like smoking tires and
may happiness slap you across the face. And may your tears be that of
joy. May the problems you had forget your home address! In simple
words ............

May 2009 be the best year of your life!!! May it be so, not only for each of us individually, but for our country as well. May anger and hatred and bitterness get buried by a snowy avalanche of beauty, of joy, of love, generosity and kindness.

My thanks to all of you who have welcomed me into the blogging community with your good wishes, your comments, your encouragement, your understanding. You have helped me move past a very difficult period in my life and enabled me to find a new joy and excitement in each and every day. You've accepted the fact that I have a big mouth and don't hesitate to express the things that I feel. That in itself is no small gift! I thank you for being a part of my life and allowing me in some small way to be a part of yours, to offer me a chance to see and understand your world - both near and far. There is no greater gift than that. That is what makes it possible for us, to at least initiate change, one friend at a time, one place after another, one change at a time.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

An Attitude Adjustment

After being such a wuss earlier this afternoon with my "tired of winter already" attitude, I ran across this, I had seen it before, but today it gave me a whole new look at the day. You've probably seen these before, I had, but it is beautiful!

In a zoo in California, a mother tiger gave birth to a rare set of triplet tiger cubs. Unfortunately, due to complications in the pregnancy, the cubs were born prematurely and due to their tiny size, they died shortly after birth.

The mother tiger after recovering from the delivery, suddenly started to decline in health, although physically she was fine. The veterinarians felt that the loss of her litter had caused the tigress to fall into a depression. The doctors decided that if the tigress could surrogate another mother's cubs, perhaps she would improve.

After checking with many other zoos across the country, the depressing news was that there were no tiger cubs of the right age to introduce to the mourning mother.

The veterinarians decided to try something that had never been tried in a zoo environment.

Sometimes a mother of one species will take on the care of a different species. The only orphans that could be found quickly, were a litter of weanling pigs. The zoo keepers and vets wrapped the piglets in tiger skin and placed the babies around the mother tiger. Would they become cubs or pork chops?

Now, please tell me one more time...

Why can't the rest of the world get along?

'Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass,

it's about learning to dance in the rain.'

I'm practicing now!

Prevention First!

I haven't checked 'snopes.com' to see if this actually works or not; but they say, if you ever get the sudden urge to run around naked, you should drink some Windex first.

It'll keep you from streaking.

What can I say? It's been a long, cold, damp, gray, generally yucky day and I've gotten desperate enough to do most anything! And by the way, the Windex tastes terrible!!

When is a Photo Not Just a Photo?

I didn't take this, but thought it was intriguing! A friend sent me several that she had stumbled across. Some were kind of dumb, but others truly beautiful!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Ruby Tuesday

Happy Ruby Tuesday! Click on the picture to join us and share the fun!!

Posted by Picasa

Now this is not what you usually think of as material for Ruby Tuesday, but as I looked across the street the other morning, the first thing I saw in all the snow was the red door of our neighbors mail box! Cheery looking, sure the postman will have no trouble seeing it -- if he can get up the street at all. We've had a couple of days with no mail delivery! What was that they use to say about the postman????
Scroll down for photos of My World!

My World

We had lots of snow last week. We had snow and sun, snow and fog, snow and gray skies. This much snow -- the kind that hangs around for days, is rare in Seattle. I've been told that this hasn't happened in thirty years! Click on the icon to join us every week to share your world with us!



This grove of trees is down by the harbor where I frequently take photos.


This is what that same grove of trees looked like six weeks ago! Not much time, a whole lot of difference!

Posted by Picasa

Monochrome Monday

My son, David, in Dallas was experimenting with a new type lens for his camera and sent me these pictures of leaves from his yard, so I'm using them as my contribution for today.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

This Says It All

Time passes.
Life happens.
Distance separates.
Children grow up.

Jobs come and go.
Love waxes and wanes.
Men don't do what they're supposed to do.

Hearts break.
Parents die.
Colleagues forget favors.
Careers end.

Sisters are there,
no matter how much time and how
many miles are between you.
A girl friend is never farther away
than needing her can reach.

When you have to walk that lonesome valley and you
have to walk it by yourself, the women in your life
will be on the valley's rim, cheering you on,
praying for you, pulling for you, intervening on
your behalf, and waiting with open arms at the
valley's end.

Sometimes, they will even break the rules and walk
beside you...Or come in and carry you out.
Girlfriends, daughters, granddaughters,

daughters-in-law, sisters, sisters-in-law, Mothers,
Grandmothers, aunties, nieces, cousins, and extended
family, all bless our life!

The world wouldn't be the same without women, and
neither would I. When we began this adventure called
womanhood, we had no idea of the incredible joys or
sorrows that lay ahead. Nor did we know how much we
would need each other.
Every day, we need each other still.

Let all the women who help make your life meaningful know.
I just did.
Short and very sweet:
There are more than twenty angels in this world.
Ten are peacefully sleeping on clouds.
Nine are playing.
And one is reading this post at this moment.

Laughter Keeps Me Warm

1. Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggert have written an impressive new book. It's called .........

'Ministers Do More Than Lay People'

2. Transvestite: A guy who likes to eat, drink
And be Mary.

3. The difference between the Pope and your boss,the Pope only expects you to kiss his ring.

4. My mind works like lightning, one brilliant flash and it is gone.

5. The only time the world beats a path to your door is if you're in the bathroom.

6. I hate sex in the movies. Tried it once. The seat folded up, the drink spilled and
that ice, well, it really chilled the mood.

7. It used to be only death and taxes. Now, of course, there's shipping and handling, too.

8. A husband is someone who, after taking the trash out, gives the impression that
he just cleaned the whole house.

9. My next house will have no kitchen - just vending machines and a large trash can.

10. Definition of a teenager? God's punishment...for enjoying sex.

11. As you slide down the banister of life, may the splinters never point the wrong way.

Why Women Shouldn't Take Their Husbands Shopping

This is why women should not take men shopping against their will.

After I retired, my wife insisted that I accompany her on her trips to Wal-Mart . Unfortunately, like most men, I found shopping boring and preferred to get in and get out. Equally unfortunately, my wife is like most women - she loved to browse. Yesterday my dear wife received the following letter from the local Wal-Mart:

Dear Mrs. Samsel,

Over the past six months, your husband has been causing quite a commotion in our store. We cannot tolerate this behavior and have been forced to ban both of you from the store. Our complaints against Mr. Samsel are listed below and are documented by our video surveillance cameras.

1. June 15: Took 24 boxes of condoms and randomly put them in people's carts when they weren't looking.

2 . July 2: Set all the alarm clocks in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals.

3. July 7: Made a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the women's restroom.

4. July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in an official voice, 'Code 3 in Housewares. Get on it right away.'

5. August 4: Went to the Service Desk and tried to put a bag of M&M's on layaway.

6. August 14: Moved a 'CAUTION - WET FLOOR' sign to a carpeted area.

7. August 15: Set up a tent in the camping department and told other shoppers he'd invite them in if they would bring pillows and blankets from the bedding department.

8. August 23: When a clerk asked if they could help him he began crying and screamed, 'Why can't you people just leave me alone?'

9. September 4: Looked right into the security camera and used it as a mirror while he picked his nose.

10. September 10: While handling guns in the hunting department, he asked the clerk where the antidepressants were.

11. October 3: Darted around the store suspiciously while loudly humming the ' Mission Impossible' theme.

12. October 6: In the auto department, he practiced his 'Madonna look' by using different sizes of funnels.

13. October 18 : Hid in a clothing rack and when people browsed through, yelled 'PICK ME! PICK ME!'

14. October 21 : When an announcement came over the loud speaker, he assumed a fetal position and screamed 'OH NO! IT'S THOSE VOICES AGAIN!' And last, but not least ..

15. October 23 : Went into a fitting room, shut the door, waited awhile, then yelled very loudly, 'Hey! There's no toilet paper in here!'

You do get the picture, huh?

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Help with Understanding the Bail Out

To help you understand the government bailout plan, here are some photos that will explain better than I can!

Greener Grass...

Its important in life to reach out, to strive for greater achievements, to go for that greener grass that is on the other side of the fence..
But one must also be careful

Sometimes you can reach too far !

But when you find yourself over-extended and you're stuck in a situation that you can't get out of,
There is one thing you should always remember.......

Your Government.....
Is there to help you!!!!


My oldest daughter, Robyn, sent pictures of the latest addition -- two kittens who are now six months old. And, of course, I had to share them! And, yes, those are snow flakes! They live in Michigan, so snow isn't the surprise it was here in Seattle.

Shadow Shot Sunday #32

Last week in the middle of all the snow and storms, we suddenly had a beautiful, sunny day. After taking some snow pictures I turned to go into the house and there was my shadow on a table on the deck!

Posted by Picasa

A "Goo-Goo" ???

I learned that term this morning from Paul Krugman's excellent OpEd column and is a century-old term for "good government" types, reformers opposed to corruption and patronage. And according to Krugman, Franklin Roosevelt was a goo-goo extraordinaire. He simultaneously made government much bigger and much cleaner. I think we all have hopes the Obama will do the same thing.

Krugman also points out that the Bush Administration offers a spectacular example of non-goo-gooism, because the Bushies didn't have to worry about governing well and honestly. Even when they failed on the job (as they did and continue to do so often), they could claim that very failure as vindication of their anti-government ideology, a demonstration that the public sector can't do anything right.

Obama and his administration, on the other hand, will find itself in a position very much like that facing the New Deal in the 1930s.

Like the New Deal, the incoming administration must greatly expand the role of government to rescue an ailing economy. But also like the New Deal, Obama team faces political opponents who will seize on any signs of corruption or abuse -- or invent them, if necessary, in an attempt to discredit the administration's program.

Roosevelt managed to navigate these treacherous political waters safely, greatly improving government's reputation even as he vastly expanded it. As a recently published study by the National Bureau of Economic Research puts it "Before 1932, the administration of public relief was widely regarded as politically corrupt," and the New Deal's huge relief programs "offered and opportunity for corruption unique in the nation's history." Yet "by 1940, charges of corruption and political manipulation had diminished considerably."

So, how did Roosevelt manage to make big government so clean?

A large part of it is that oversight was built into New Deal programs from the beginning. The WPA, in particular, had a powerful, independent "division of progress investigation" devoted to investigating complaints of fraud. This division was so diligent that in 1940, when a Congressional subcommittee investigated the WPA, it couldn't find a single serious irregularity that the division had missed.

But the Obama administration and Democrats in general, according to Mr. Krugman, need to do everything they can to build an FDR-like bond with the public. Obama has a high standing in polls based on public hopes that he'll succeed. He will need that even more when things aren't going well.

The Democrats need to pay attention, the push for Caroline Kennedy as senator is just more fuel for the 40 years of conservative propaganda denouncing "liberal elites". And you can be sure that those same critics will be making a really big thing out of Obama's rented Christmas vacation beach home in Hawaii. Isn't it a little strange for those same conservatives who have supported Bush and all the other big spenders and who are responsible for the mess we find ourselves in now are so quick to point these things out?

Fixing the economy is going to take time and, yes, these are the early days, but as Krugman points out, that's precisely the point. The Obama team needs to be thinking now, when hopes are high, about how to accumulate and preserve enough political capital to see the job through.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Some Good News for a Change!

I had great computer guy in Portland who would come to my house to work on my computer whenever I needed work done. I emailed him to see if he knew anyone he could recommend here in Seattle. He didn't, but he did tell me about Angies list. So, I went online, found her list, joined, specified what I needed and promptly recieved two and a half pages of recommended, A rating computer people and how many miles they were from our house. I called the one at the top of the list whose place is just over three miles away. But that's just the beginning -- I called her, got her on the line, answered all her questions about what was needed and I asked her how much she charged. It all came down to this: she's coming to the house at 10 AM on New Years Day! I guess sometimes a crappy economy can work in our favor! Anyway, I liked the way she sounded and hopefully I'll get everything taken care of and someone I can call again if I have a need.

So,I'm set! The New Year is looking better already!

What a Way to Start the New Year!

First of all the bad weather here forced my son and daughter to have to cancel their trip here for Christmas -- Adam and I will be eating a LOT of turkey over the next week! They're planning now on being here for Mother's Day so I'll start crossing my fingers right away!

Secondly, my computer seems to have acquired a virus and it is a real pain to try and do anything. So, today -- if they're open! I'll be taking it in to get fixed. Of course this means I may be without a computer for several days -- hopefully, no longer, but then my luck hasn't been the best lately!

I've prepared a Ruby Tuesday to post automatically and if I can get the computer's cooperation, I hope to do a My World post as well -- we'll see.

So, until then I hope you're getting ready to welcome the New Year!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Sky Watch

Always changing, always beautiful, always take my breath away! Merry Christmas, everyone! Join us every week and share your beautiful skies!




Posted by Picasa

Ordinary Miracles

Today ... I wish you a day of ordinary miracles.

A fresh pot of coffee you didn't have to make yourself.
An unexpected phone call from an old friend.
Green stoplights on your way to work or shop.

I wish you a day of little things to rejoice in ...

The fastest line at the grocery store.
A good sing along song on the radio.
Your keys right where you look.

I wish you a day of happiness and perfection-little bite-size pieces of perfection because you are someone special and rare.

I wish You a day of Peace, Happiness and Joy.

Wishing you a very merry Christmas and the best in 2009 AND


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas at Arlington National Cemetary

Rest easy, sleep well my brothers.
Know the line has held, your job is done.
Rest easy, sleep well.
Others have taken up where you fell, the line has held.
Peace, peace, and farewell...

You may be interested to know that these wreaths -- some 5,000 -- are donated by the Worcester Wreath Co. of Harrington, Maine. The owner, Merrill Worcester, not only provides the wreaths, but covers the trucking expense as well. He's done this since 1992. A wonderful guy. Also, most years, groups of Maine school kids combine an educational trip to DC with this event to help out. Making this even more remarkable is the fact that Harrington is in one the poorest parts of the state.

Facts checked on Snopes.

We hear too much about the bad things people do. Everyone should hear about this.

A Christmas Wish for You All

I would just like to take this opportunity to wish each and everyone in this wonderful blogging world a Joyous, Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Everything and the Happiest of New Years!

Since I began blogging in July of this year I have come to realize not only how much it has changed my life, how much it has added to my life, but that it has probably saved my life. I'm not trying to be overly dramatic, it's just that I had reached a place in my life where I never thought that I would be, and yes, I know, we all get old and probably none of us ever thought we would find ourselves where we are today. But blogging has not only brought the world to me, it has brought me to the world! I find that not only do I receive beautiful and marvelous blessings from people all over the world, but I am able to offer some of the same. It has brought excitement, knowledge, beauty and a better understanding of the world and its people.

So, to all of you out there in cyberspace, enjoy your holiday, make the most of every day -- be it a holiday or not. Lets celebrate the wonder of the world, of love, of friends, of ourselves.

Peace and love to you all!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Ruby Tuesday

Posted by Picasa

Well, it's not really "Ruby Red", but it is a Christmas Cactus and seemed appropriate for this issue of Ruby Tuesday!

My World #10

We have had unusally heavy snowfall over the past few days here in Seattle. My son, Adam, and I set out this morning to get some pictures I could share here on My World. We went down to park in the harbor area where I took photos last fall. It surely did not look the same this morning as it did then. The snow weighed heavily on the branches as you can see.

This grove of trees was so beautiful and green just a few weeks ago -- I almost didn't recognize them.

This bare tree with the deserted nest I had also photographed earlier -- it didn't look the same either.

The seagulls have been very confused and upset with all the snow -- where's the food! they seem to be asking. We got another picture earlier this week when the snow first started to fall. The one we got a photo of that day looked totally out of sorts, with feathers fluffed out and definitely interested in finding food. A fellow blogger from Australia saw the photo and wrote new lyrics to "Winter Wonderland" to go with the picture which she put on her blog. They were really funny!

There is a very large Nordic population in the Seattle area and this statue is of Leif Erikkson, who supposedly landed on the North American continent 500 years before Christopher Columbus. The statue is located near the harbor and overlooking the water. There are stone slabs surrounding the statue that contain the names of all Nordic people who came to Washington -- Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finland, Denmark -- their names and the year they arrived. There is still a strong Nordic community here, Swedish Hospital, names of streets and communities. It was interesting to see this statue in the snow, looking out to sea.

This last photo is of Adam and the three doggies sharing a "snow/ice stick". They have all been totally puzzled by their new white world. Sam with his short legs, had to literally leap from spot to spot.

What Can I Say?

What Can I Say?
I'm interested in almost everything. Use to like to travel, but it's too expensive now. I take Tai Chi classes, swim, volunteer in a Jump-start program for pre-schoolers. I'm an avid reader and like nearly everyone these days I follow politics avidly. I'm a former teacher and Special Projects Coordinator for a Telecommunications company, Assistant to the President of a Japanese silicon wafer manufacturing company. Am now enjoying retirement -- most of the time. I have two daughters, one son-in-law and two sons scattered all over the country. No grandchildren.

Portland Time