I miss you Sam!!

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

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Good Wishes











Friday, January 9, 2009

Questions, Questions and More Questions

Remain calm, even when it seems hopeless

It seems to me that as I grow older I find myself going through as many changes as I did as a teenager and that in itself is puzzling. Oh, I can accept – reluctantly, the physical changes. I knew they were inevitable, damnit! But haven’t I learned anything over the years? Why can’t one just transition smoothly through the various stages of life? Can’t I just grow old gracefully without all the ups and downs, emotional highs and lows? Does this happen to everyone or is it just me? As you can see, I have lots of questions and apparently few answers.

When I started blogging six months ago I wrote about some of those ups and downs, the fears, the insecurities, but I was at a rather crucial point in my life and writing things down helped me to see those things more clearly and I began to move past them. Then it was all just fun, fun to be able to write and share things with others; to find that I wasn’t the only one who had had problems of one kind or another over the years. And it’s been such fun getting into photography and sharing my pictures. At last! I thought I have transitioned to being an “elder”.

Then recently I began to notice that I wasn’t writing about things that I felt or didn’t feel. Oh, I found all kinds of things to post – funny, naughty, politics, weather, but what I wasn’t writing about was where I was emotionally on any given day. I was back to hiding that gal behind the funny stuff, the ugly stuff, politics, and photos. I have to admit however, I’ve begun to get so discouraged with the politics and the frightful conditions of our economy, our country that I don’t even know what to write about them anymore. Maybe that’s part of my problem these days; that and worrying about my kids, how they are going to survive this mess.

So, I find myself asking the reflection in the mirror, what’s going on with you now? And when in the hell are you going to accept that you are seventy-five and a half years old? Stop acting like a teenager and deal with reality. Maybe it’s the weather, just the winter blues. And of course, all the computer problems haven’t helped. I am getting a new one and that, of course, gave me another reason to feel guilty??? Should I be spending that money right now???

Well, I don’t have any answers. The politics are still lousy as is the economy, everyone’s love affair with Obama is beginning to tremble as we have to deal with the fact that he’s not going to be able to solve all the problems we have immediately and that whatever he does or doesn’t do there will be plenty of people out there to complain that he should have done it this way or that way. And the beat goes on!

So, now that I’ve pissed and moaned for paragraph after paragraph, what have I accomplished? Nothing, but for whatever reason I suddenly feel better. Guess it’s the sick fun of passing on your aches and complaints. Whatever, but if any of you feel like pissing moaning please feel free to email me or leave them in a comment.

Well, time for me to get off my butt and figure how quickly I can get to the bank with some coins to cover that new computer.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

"Life is too short to wake up with regrets..."

There comes a point in your life when you realize:
Who matters,
Who never did,
Who won't anymore...
And who always will.
So, don't worry about people from your past,
There's a reason why they didn't make it to your future.
Give these flowers to everyone you don't want to lose in 2009,

Be kinder than necessary
because everyone you meet is fighting
some kind of battle.

Gems of Wisdom/Humor/Sarcasm - Take Your Pick

You may have seen these before, maybe many times, but they're still funny and still true in many cases.
Sometimes, when I look at my children, I say to myself, 'Lillian, you should have remained a virgin.'
- Lillian Carter (mother of Jimmy Carter)
I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalog: - 'No good in a bed, but fine against a wall.'
- Eleanor Roosevelt
Last week, I stated this woman was the ugliest woman I had ever seen. I have since been visited by her sister, and now wish to withdraw that statement.
- Mark Twain
The secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending; and to have the two as close together as possible.
- George Burns
Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people only once a year.
- Victor Borge
Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.
- Mark Twain
By all means, marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher.
- Socrates
I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.
- Groucho Marx
My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe.
- Jimmy Durante
I have never hated a man enough to give his diamonds back.
- Zsa Zsa Gabor
Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar and fat.
- Alex Levine
My luck is so bad that if I bought a cemetery, people would stop dying.
- Rodney Dangerfield
Money can't buy you happiness .. But it does bring you a more pleasant form of misery.
- Spike Milligan
Until I was thirteen, I thought my name was SHUT UP.
- Joe Namath
I don't feel old. I don't feel anything until noon. Then it's time for my nap.
- Bob Hope
I never drink water because of the disgusting things that fish do in it.
- W. C. Fields
We could certainly slow the aging process down if it had to work its way through Congress.
- Will Rogers
Don't worry about avoiding temptation. As you grow older, it will avoid you.
- Winston Churchill
Maybe it's true that life begins at fifty .. But everything else starts to wear out, fall out, or spread out.
- Phyllis Diller
By the time a man is wise enough to watch his step, he's too old to go anywhere.
- Billy Crystal

Sky Watch #20

Join us and share your skies!

There was something almost "other worldly" about our skies a few weeks ago. These were spaced out over a couple of weeks.

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Ya gotta meet Molly...

Meet Molly.She's a grey speckled pony who was abandoned by her owners when Hurricane Katrina hit southern Louisiana. She spent weeks on her own before finally being rescued and taken to a farm where abandoned animals were stockpiled. While there, she was attacked by a pit bull terrier and almost died. Her gnawed right front leg became infected, and her vet went to LSU for help, but LSU was overwhelmed, and this pony was a welfare case. You know how that goes.

But after surgeon Rustin Moore met Molly, he changed his mind.He saw how the pony was careful to lie down on different sides so she didn't seem to get sores, and how she allowed people to handle her.She protected her injured leg. She constantly shifted her weight and didn't overload her good leg. She was a smart pony with a serious survival ethic.

Moore agreed to remove her leg below the knee, and a temporary artificial limb was built. Molly walked out of the clinic and her story really begins

'This was the right horse and the right owner,' Moore insists. Molly happened to be a one-in-a-million patient. She's tough as nails, but sweet, and she was willing to cope with pain. She made it obvious she understood that she was in trouble.The other important factor, according to Moore , is having a truly committed and compliant owner who is dedicated to providing the daily care required over the lifetime of the horse.

Molly's story turns into a parable for life in post-Katrina Louisiana .The little pony gained weight, and her mane finally felt a comb. A human prosthesis designer built her a leg.

The prosthetic has given Molly a whole new life, Allison Barca DVM, Molly's regular vet, reports.

And she asks for it. She will put her little limb out, and come to you and let you know that she wants you to put it on. Sometimes she wants you to take
it off too. And sometimes, Molly gets away from Barca. 'It can be pretty bad when you can't catch a three-legged horse,' she laughs.

Most important of all, Molly has a job now. Kay, the rescue farm owner, started taking Molly to shelters, hospitals, nursing homes, and rehabilitation
centers. Anywhere she thought that people needed hope. Wherever Molly went, she showed people her pluck. She inspired people, and she had a good time doing it.

'It's obvious to me that Molly had a bigger role to play in life, Moore said. She survived the hurricane, she survived a horrible injury, and now she is giving hope to others.'

Barca concluded, 'She's not back to normal, but she's going to be better.To me, she could be a symbol for New Orleans itself.'

This is Molly's most recent prosthesis. The bottom photo shows the ground surface that she stands on, which has a smiley face embossed in it. Wherever Molly goes, she leaves a smiley hoof print behind.

Monastery Life

A young monk arrives at the monastery. He is assigned to helping the other monks in copying the old canons and laws of the church by hand.

He notices, however, that all of the monks are copying from copies, not from the original manuscript. So, the new monk goes to the head abbot to question this, pointing out that if someone made even a small error in the first copy, it would never be picked up! In fact, that error would be continued in all of the subsequent copies

The head monk, says, 'We have been copying from the copies for centuries, but you make a good point, my son.'

He goes down into the dark caves underneath the monastery where the original manuscripts are held as archives in a locked vault that hasn't been opened for hundreds of years. Hours go by and nobody sees the old abbot.

So, the young monk gets worried and goes down to look for him.

He sees him banging his head against the wall and wailing.

"We missed the R !
We missed the R !
We missed the R !"

His forehead is all bloody and bruised and he is crying uncontrollably. The young monk asks the old abbot, 'What's wrong, father?'

With A choking voice, the old abbot replies,

'The word was...


The Helping Hand Award

I have been honored with another award from The Busy Mind of a Quiet Man who passed this on to me today. And like him I find the recognition humbling and I, too, am happy to share my stories and whatever with the hope that perhaps it does touch someone, makes someone laugh, encourages or gives someone hope. It is my feeling that that is what we are all here to do for one another. The Helping Hand site is a moving site to visit.

This has caught me at a very busy time and I, too, am going to have to bend the rules of acceptance and shorten the list so that I can pass it on.

All the people that I follow give me so many wonderful, inspiring, humorous moments, but there are four that have continued to make a difference in my life with the things they write and they are:

Maithri whose compassion and love for all people has been and is moving and inspiring to me.

Lilly who makes me laugh, makes me feel good and we can't have too many of those in our lives!

Dianne another one who makes me laugh, shares my passion and concern for our world and speaks with much eloquence.

mom/caryn who has a delightful post and speaks so lovingly of her family and her life.

Here are the rules so they can follow them -- also unlike me and my busy mind friend! if they accept the award.

The Rules:
1. Select 10 bloggers: 5 you consider your blogging Helping Hand then "Pay it Forward" by extending your "Helping Hand" to 5 additional bloggers in support and encouragement for their efforts.
2. In passing on the Emblem, each recipient must provide the name of blog or blog author with a link for others to visit. Each recipient must show the Emblem and put the name and link to the blog that has given it to her or him.
3. Link the Emblem to this post: Helping Hand: Much Obliged and Paying it Forward so that others will know its origin and impetus.
4. If you have not already done so, show your recipients some love by adding them to your blog roll, Technorati Favorite list, or in any other way to further let them know that their blog voice is important to you and being heard.
5. Add your name to The Helping Hand meme and don't forget to leave a comment as a permanent record of all Helping Hand recipients.
6. Display the rules.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

An Interesting Social Experiment

From The Effective Club

A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the violin; it was a cold January morning. He played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour, it was calculated that thousand of people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

Three minutes went by and a middle aged man noticed there was musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried up to meet his schedule.

A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw the money in the till and without stopping continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late for work.

The one who paid the most attention was a 3 year old boy. His mother tagged him along, hurried but the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. All the parents, without exception, forced them to move on.

In the 45 minutes the musician played, only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money but continued to walk their normal pace. He collected $32. When he finished playing and silence took over, no one noticed it. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the best musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written with a violin worth 3.5 million dollars.

Two days before his playing in the subway, Joshua Bell sold out at a theater in Boston and the seats average $100.

This is a real story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of an social experiment about perception, taste and priorities of people. The outlines were: in a commonplace environment at an inappropriate hour: Do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize the talent in an unexpected context?

One of the possible conclusions from this experience could be:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world playing the best music ever written, how many other things are we missing?

How many indeed, seems it might be time to stop and not only smell the roses, but listen to the music that is all around us every day in so many ways, in the laughter of children, in the voices of friends. Take a moment today, stop for a moment and listen to the music.

Lesson for the Morning

A man boarded an airplane in New Orleans, with a box of crabs. A female crew member took the box and promised to put it in the crew's refrigerator, which she did.

The man firmly advised her that he was holding her personally responsible for the crabs staying frozen, and proceeded to rant and rave about what would happen if she let the crabs thaw out.

Shortly before landing in New York , she announced to the entire cabin, "Would the gentleman who gave me the crabs in New Orleans , please raise your hand?"

Not one hand went up..so she took them home and ate them herself . . . Lesson here?

Watch what you say and to who -- I won't restrict this to men!

New Wine for Seniors

California vintners in the Napa Valley area, which primarily produce Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir and Pinot Grigio wines, have developed a new hybrid grape that acts as an anti-diuretic.

It is expected to reduce the number of trips older people have to make to the bathroom during the night.

The new wine will be marketed as


I hope you all realize that from time to time I have to take a break and post something totally silly. There is so much pain and anguish in this world that sometimes the only way to catch your breath is to find something -- however silly or foolish to move you beyond to that place where you can breathe again. That is what the occasionally silly, crazy things are for -- for me and hopefully for you -- just a little laugh therapy can work wonders. We still have work to do.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Ruby Tuesday

Welcome to Ruby Tuesday! Hope you'll join us!
This week was supposed to be red signs, but due to the weather I haven't been able to get out to look for some. So, I thought each of these were signs in their own way.

A Ruby Red Christmas tribute to the men who have given their lives for our country. A friend of mine sent me this photo. I thought it was a good time/place to share it.

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...

My World

This is my world without snow and one I am so looking forward to seeing again!

Brilliant sunsets over the harbor!

Sail boats out on the Sound.

Beautiful flowers and colors everywhere!

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Monochrome Monday

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This is the beach near the harbor, the sand looked gray, the fog was gray, the water was gray, the sky was gray. It was almost like standing in a void where there was nothing. Very eerie in it's own way.

Happily, He's Almost Gone!

Frank Rich has an excellent OpEd piece this morning and I urge you to read it. This is just a glimpse.

"We like our failed presidents to be Shakespearean, or at least large enough to inspire Oscar-worthy performances from magnificent tragedians like Frank Langella. So here, too, George W. Bush has let us down. Even the banality of evil is too grandiose a concept for 43. He is not a memorable villain so much as a sometimes affable second banana whom Josh Brolin and Will Ferrell can nail without breaking a sweat. He's the reckless Yalie Tom Buchanan, not Gatsby. He is smaller than life.

The last NBC/Wall Street Journal poll on Bush's presidency found that 79 percent of Americans will not miss him after he leaves the White House. He is being forgotten already, even if he's not yet gone. You start to pity him until you remember how vast the wreckage is. It stretches from the Middle East to Wall Street and even into the heavesn, which have been a saafe haven for toxins under his passive stewardship. The discrepancy between the grandeur of the failure and the stature of the man is a puzzlement. We are still trying to compute it."

The whole article is worth reading. It just makes me wonder all over again how this man was ever elected president -- but then he wasn't really, was he? More squirrelly politics and too many people not paying attention, too much shoulder shrugging. I do hope we've learned the lesson to be learned here. And I hope somewhere along the line we get an improved voting system.

More Photo Fun

We could all use this kind of protection!

You have a question???

Watch that hand!

How about this for a basketball?

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Ah, How Time Flies -- Like it or Not!

Last night I watched a really old movie starring Julie Andrews and Rock Hudson titled Darling Lili, from 1970. She was so young and so beautiful! And then I remembered that sometime ago, to commemorate her birthday, she made a special appearance at Manhattan’s Radio City Music Hall for the benefit of the AARP.

One of the musical numbers she performed was 'My Favorite Things' from the legendary movie 'Sound Of Music'. I'm sure you've heard it, but the lyrics she used are still a hoot and fun to hear again. I thought I'd pass them around to share an "all too true" look at aging. Damn! just why I can find humor in that I'm not sure, but I am sure it's better to laugh about it than cry!

(Sing It!) - If you sing it, it’s especially hysterical!!!

Botox and nose drops and needles for knitting,
Walkers and handrails and new dental fittings,
Bundles of magazines tied up in string,
These are a few of my favorite things.

Cadillacs and cataracts, hearing aids and glasses,
Polident and Fixodent and false teeth in glasses,
Pacemakers, golf carts and porches with swings,
These are a few of my favorite things.

When the pipes leak, When the bones creak,
When the knees go bad,
I simply remember my favorite things,
And then I don't feel so bad.

Hot tea and crumpets and corn pads for bunions,
No spicy hot food or food cooked with onions,
Bathrobes and heating pads and hot meals they bring,
These are a few of my favorite things.

Back pain, confused brains and no need for sinnin',
Thin bones and fractures and hair that is thinnin',
And we won't mention our short shrunken frames,
When we remember our favorite things.

When the joints ache, When the hips break,
When the eyes grow dim,
Then I remember the great life I've had,
And then I don't feel so bad.

A New Award!

Inspiration for the Van Gogh's Ear Award

You may know the story of Vincent Van Gogh a well known artist in history. Although a brilliant painter in his later years went quite insane he received the nickname of fou roux ("the redheaded madman"). The most bazaar of Vincent's behavior is when he cut off the lower part of his own left ear lobe, which he wrapped in newspaper and gave to a prostitute named Rachel in the local brothel, asking her to "keep this object carefully. After this he suffered recurrent bouts of mental illness, which led to his suicide July 29, 1890 he was 37 years old. His works of art are priceless.

The point of this award.

We are all artist in are own way be it art, photography, writing, philosophy, comedy, blogging and we all go a little crazy sometimes. But if you ever feel so crazy to cut off your ear and give it to a prostitute "Seek Help"!

Always remember you're unique.
Just like everyone else.

Roger passed the award to so many wonderful people but there are a few that I would like to pass the award to...

And I was one! And so very honored this morning to receive this Van Gogh award from Mary at Work of the Poet, who has such an inspiring website. I've certainly been encouraged to use my camera (actually Adams) more and more and it's just added to the fun of blogging.

I would like to pass this on to those who have also inspired me -- you don't have to do a thing but accept the praise of your work and share it with others if you like.

CR at Little Bang Theory
Deborah at Notes from the Cloud Messenger
Rob at Inukshuk Adventure
Susan at This Irish Photographer
Thank you to Mary and to all of you!

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