I miss you Sam!!

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

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!!!!

Grand-Kitties

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!


 
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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!




 


 


 


 
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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

PEACE ON EARTH!

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!

Sylvia

Monday, December 22, 2008

Ruby Tuesday

 
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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.

Fun in the Snow!

A friend took pictures of Adam and I. Here we had just discovered the Leif Erikkson statue along with the names of all the Nordic people who have immigrated to Washington. It was a fun morning in spite of being very cold.







Ice in the harbor! Not a sight you see here often -- even in winter time.



Trees in snow overload!




Adam and me again.

Christmas Around the World #4



Against a backdrop of tall, shadowy firs, a rainbow trio of Christmas trees lights up the night (location unknown).



Drink a glass of gluhwein from the holiday market at the Romer Frankfurt's city hall since 1405 and enjoy a taste of Christmas past.





A token of gratitude for Britain's aid during World War II, the Christmas tree in London's Trafalgar Square has been the annual gift of the people of Norway since 1947

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Monochrome Maniacs

 

A cold, snowy, icy day in Seattle at the harbor.
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A Valuable Lesson!

This is all that I will post for this day and it comes from the blog of an incredible young man. It is a lesson for all of us, each and every day.

Peace and love to you all -- and visit Maithri's blog.


Everything is energy.

Science tells us that the physical universe is merely a mask for the dynamic and tireless dance of energy.

It also tells us that energy is never created or destroyed it just changes shape.

This has profound implications for the way we live our lives...

When I was about 10 or 11 years old. A hormonal preteen who was just discovering the effects that testosterone has on a body ;), I remember rummaging through the books in my house for anything which had any vague reference to 'sex'.

I ended up finding a book in my fathers bookcase called "Your Erroneous Zones" by Wayne Dyer.

To my fledgeling libidos discontent it had absolutely nothing to do with sex. But as the cosmos would have it, 'finding Wayne Dyers words would be a defining moment in my life.

He has been one of my greatest teachers.... Throughout my life i've eagerly devoured every book he's written. His tapes. His CD's.

And one great lesson which I have learnt from him is this:

Every thought has an energy.

My friend Shimmerings and I were discussing this idea the other day. Have you met Shimmerings? She's one of those authentic, soulful, tender human beings who in my humble opinion, everyone should have a special place for on their blogroll....

http://taleoftwosouls.blogspot.com/

We were discussing a principle which Wayne often talks about. And which a doctor named David Hawkins has written beautifully about in his book "Power vs Force".

It says this:

"What you are FOR empowers you. What you are AGAINST weakens you."

Let me explain.

When Mother Teresa was asked to march against the Vietnam War, she refused.

Her response was "Have a march for Peace and I'll be there."

It may seem like semantics, but there is a huge energy difference between fighting against something and fighting for something.

Let me tell you another story....

During the time immediately following the September 11th bombings, there was a sea of hatred that surged towards the muslim community.

I remember speaking to my dear and beautiful friend Susan on the phone one day. She had been telling me about a pregnant muslim woman who had been raped while waiting for a bus.

And I said to her "Susan, doesnt it just make you want to scream?" and she said

"Maithri, there is a saying "Theres no use cursing the darkness, when you're holding a candle."


When we focus our attention on that which we are for then we draw energy towards us. We become magnetized and the power of the universe flows like lightning into our hands.

So i dont fight against poverty. I fight for food and clothing and housing for all people. I search for creative ways of finding solutions.

I dont fight against HIV/AIDS or malaria or TB. I fight for free medicines and compassionate care and the breaking down of stigma for those who are suffering.

I dont fight against prejudice. I fight for love and tolerance and the celebration
of diversity.

There is a difference.

And to me it is the difference between a life lived in anger, and a life lived in peace.

I believe that we cannot break down concepts of "us vs them" if we have the same mentality. If every day we create a new "them", a new evil to fight.

If the world is truly one... One body... One river.... one ocean.... Then it moves not backwards... Not against itself.... But forwards - towards the higher energies of love and peace and light.

"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness will not put it out"

We are the light.

Jean Houston says "We are divine enzymes sent to catalyze the world".

And she's right.... An enzyme speeds up a chemical reaction. Without it, the reaction would take far too long.

We are the mediators of change.

There are 5 words which have become my signature of sorts ;)....

5 words which I believe in with all my heart.

It has been my experience that when I love the world. Something changes. Maybe its the object of my love that changes... or perhaps its really me who is doing the changing...

So this Christmas I want to leave you with these words.

Let them remind you that in the presence of darkness, we are called to be the light.

Not because we are special. But because we are one....


Love the world into change,

Maithri.

Christmas Around the World #3



The Christmas tree that greets revelers at the Puerta del Sol is dressed for a party. Madrid's two-week celebration makes millionaires along with merrymakers. On Dec. 22, a lucky citizen will win El Gordo (the fat one), the world's biggest lottery.




In addition to the Vatican's heavenly evergreen, St. Peter's Square in Rome hosts a larger-than-life nativity scene in front of the obelisk




Ooh la la Galeries Lafayette! In Paris, even the Christmas trees are chic.
With its monumental, baroque dome, plus 10 stories of lights and high fashion, it's no surprise this show-stopping department store draws more visitors than the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower.

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