Sunday, November 15, 2009

My Friend, the Scientist

When we lived in Pomona we used to go to Dr. Milton Penner, who was our family optometrist. He and his wife, Ina were our friends, not just professionals who saw to our physical needs. Tony had been seeing Dr. Penner for years, as he was his family's eye doctor for many years before I married him.

One day on a visit for an eye exam he and I started talking politics and he told me something very interesting. He said when he and Ina were in their last year of school in Chicago at Northwestern University he was approached by some government officials and asked to take part in a very important project that would end WW II. It turns out Dr. Penner originally was a nuclear physicist and they were asking him to be part of the "Manhattan Project". Well, the upshot was that Dr. Penner worked on the project for a few months until he found out they were going to actually go through with dropping the bomb on Japan. Dr. Penner told them he refused to continue on with the project, and when he did his superiors told him that would be fine, except he would have to be stripped of his degree as a physicist and start over in another profession, and that his name would never be known as one who had worked on the project. Since he was a conscientious objector (he was also Jewish, isn't that interesting?) he agreed. Then he and Ina went back to the University and he became an optometrist and went on with his life.

When I asked him if he felt resentment toward the U.S. Government for what they did to him he said, "No." He said he knew it had to be done to protect all Americans, but that he just couldn't continue on the work of the destruction of his fellow men.

I was proud to know Dr. Penner. I could not have personally done what he did without kicking and screaming all the way, but he was a real man and took his lumps and went on. He was a good husband and father, and had a most wonderful hobby - he made Grandfather clocks.

When he and Ina retired they moved down to San Clemente, CA. Although we never saw them again (they are now both deceased) I have fond memories of them.

His wife, Ina was a fantastic artist and had a wonderful hobby. She created wood-burned portraits - landscapes and people. They were beautiful, and she hung them on the walls of the lobby of Dr. Penner's office. She used to be paid well by her clients for creating them, and I'm certain many of her creations hang in the finest homes still.

These are certainly two of THE most interesting people we've ever known. What is also interesting is that Dr. Penner never told Tony this story at all and I've often wondered why he told me. He was also very concerned about Tony's war injuries, especially in the loss of the vision in his right eye. He guided Tony with his eye health for years after Tony came back from Viet Nam, even though Tony could have gone to the VA for his medical care he chose to see Dr. Penner.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Foibles of Facebook

I'm amazed how this jerk can keep compromising my Facebook account. My friend says he's coming in the back door of Facebook - not through my account. It seems to be the truth, because I have so much security on both my computers. But it really makes me mad that I have to give up so much time on my page to suit this geek. I don't understand why Facebook doesn't have more security for such occurrences for it's users.

I've re-opened my other account and am going to go to it permanently once I get the other one back. I'm going to snag all my pictures and other usables and put them on my alternative page and then delete my old page.

I have adjusted to wearing my upper plate now, I still hate it with a passion, but I will have to deal with it 'til I can find a way to get the money to get replace the darned thing with dental implants. Believe me when I say you do NOT want plates at all!

We are still in a quandry as to where to move when we retire. If anyone has any suggestions, please - tell me. Right now Southern Utah is in the primary running spot. We want a three bedroom home with two baths and everything needs to be updated, no more repair work for us! Also, a location with LOW property taxes, preferrably no state tax and just a little land, so we can keep a veggie garden in the Summer. If possible, near a VA Hospital and other medical services. Any ideas?

Tony and I are certainly worried about what the new U.S. Healthcare Plan will do to our medical concerns after we retire. Since the bill is slated to cut $80 billion dollars from Medicare we are VERY concerned. Those of you reading this really ought to be concerned too, since it will carry over to you and your children as well.

Do not think you will escape the Socialist/Marxist policies rendered by the Obama administration, it won't just go away.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Real Deal

Don and Helen Peery left yesterday and we had such a wonderful visit! We spent all our time reminiscing about all our old friends, our children and grandchildren. Life has certainly taken us all in such different directions. Yet we are all still faithful in the church, happy in spite of our trials and tribulations.

Today ended quite badly. We began to have gale force winds this afternoon and when a particularly high wind blew across our neighborhood this afternoon at about 4:30 PM it blew pipes off the North side of our house. Then immediately after that we heard a very LOUD crack, and when it was done we saw that our old jasmine tree had been literally lifted out of the ground and came crashing down on the neighbor's back staircase to their second story. It crushed both the bottom landing and stairs of the staircase and the fence between our yards. But the worst of it was that the tree ripped all the electrical lines out of their house. It is 7:30 PM and the DWP has still not come to remove the live wires and re-connect the neighbor's electrical lines.

I'm very frustrated and angry and don't have any way to make this all go away. I hate being at the mercy of the utility company and I KNOW our neighbor and she will sue us over this. I could just scream!

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Spent the day getting ready for the Peery' visit. I'm really excited to see my dear friends (and cousin, Helen) Don and Helen Peery. We have been friends for more than 35 years. We will be going to their daughter Samantha's grave while they are here. Samantha died of cancer about 3 years ago - very sad. We will also be attending the children's sacrament program at church on Sunday and then in the evening we will be going to the Betty Stevenson fireside. It will be a very busy, but happy weekend. I have already planned our menus so we can enjoy dining together on some really great dishes, including catfish and hushpuppies.

I am alarmed at how many of our friends and their children have been suffering from Swine Flu - it is really enveloping the USA.

Tomorrow we say goodbye to our long-time friend, Dee Todd. She passed away from the effects of myrsa, and suffered terribly for the past year. Dee was a sweet, unassuming soul, she leaves her children to survive her.

I remain significantly concerned about the passage of a healthcare bill in the U.S. Senate. We inch closer and closer to absolute socialism. It's intriguing to me how the majority of Americans are not at all concerned about this.

I'm terribly worried that soon we will no longer have the power of the U.S. Constitution to protect us at all.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wondering Wanderings

Today I'm wondering why I never wrote that book, traveled to far away places, saw the movie because the title fascinated me and so on and so on . . .

As I round the bend to full retirement I begin to wonder what on earth do I do to finish my work here? Maybe I am finished already. I married twice had 7 children by four different men, adopted a daughter, endured all that was required of me as a parent and am now a grandparent and great-grandparent.

I found eternal happiness in my second marriage and look forward to spending my last years on earth with the love of my life, Tony. The focus of our lives has changed drastically in the past two years. Until then we were content taking care of children, grandchildren and friends and other family. Now we are foot-loose and fancy free. Well, almost. We have a huge mortgage on a monstrously huge home - debt that is crippling and the desire to continue to serve in our church here. Now we probably won't have anything to look forward to except selling our home for next to nothing, retaining only enough to pay it off and our bills and to rent an apartment to live in for the next twenty years. What a life!

We planned so carefully for our retirement, financially that is. We have enough to live on, but no nest egg to fall back on, no extra money to buy the 'rose covered cottage' in the dale. That was what the equity in our home was to provide. But now the economy has collapsed, and there are not enough years to recoup our losses.

I know this has happened to other people in the past - but it wasn't supposed to happen to us. In 1929 my paternal grandparents lost all their savings in a bank that collapsed in the 'crash'. Oh, well I remember them telling us to be so careful about our savings, not to trust the banks. So we decided to invest in property, you know, the land will always be there, etc. Beside that, the FDIC doesn't insure moneys more than $100,000, and now I heard on the news yesterday that many banks are about to default on their FDIC insurance for their investors.

Here's where I really whine! Tony and I have always been at the airport when our ship came in. We've missed out on three huge real estate investment deals in our lifetime, both of which would provide us with a very good living to the end of our days. We forwent the profit bearing deals because we wanted to keep our home(s) in order to keep our family safe. We should have sold our homes and moved on, our choice of family first always trumped doing that because we believed our homes would save us financially - they never did. In fact every time we've sold our homes we've lost money. Okay, whining done.

So now the next era of our lives is tainted with a home that won't save us financially - again. Partly I am publishing this because I'm hopping mad at being caught in this web of financially insecurity, the other reason is that hopefully you, the readers can learn something from this to use in your lives.

I want my children to know they were always worth more than anything else in the whole world to me, so I'm not really sorry for anything we did in trying to get ahead in this life for them and ourselves. Just never put all your eggs in one basket like we did.

Don't think we don't have enough money to live on in our retirement, we do. We will just not have our hearts' desires, i.e., travel and other perks.

Thank goodness we have each other. Ha! I think of a funny line we always use in regard to money --

We started out with nothing and still have most of it left!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Really, Really Good Hamburgers

Tomorrow (Monday) I'm going to make hamburgers and fries for dinner, and I have invited Miguel and Greg to come. I'm going to make some gorgeous gourmet burgers I saw made on the Food Network. I can't wait to try the recipes. I hope everyone enjoys the food. It's still going to be warm enough to cook outdoors tomorrow, we'll have to eat indoors though.

Here's the recipe -

* 2 1/2 pounds ground beef
* 1 small shallot, finely chopped
* 2 clove garlic, finely chopped
* 1 teaspoon Neely's Dry Rub seasoning
* 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
* 2 teaspoons salt
* Freshly ground black pepper
* Butter
* 6 brioche buns
* 6 slices pepper jack cheese
* 12 slices smoked apple wood bacon, fried crisp
* 1/2 cup Neely's "Secret Sauce", recipe follows
* 1 pint cole slaw (recommended: Neely's Cole Slaw)
* 2 beef steak tomatoes, sliced

Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.

In a large mixing bowl, break up the meat with your hands. Add the chopped shallot, garlic, Neely's Dry Rub, Worcestershire sauce, and salt and pepper, to taste. Mix with a wooden spoon until thoroughly incorporated. Using your hands, divide the meat into 6 equal balls. Flatten them into patties and use your thumb to create an indent in the center of each burger. Cook's Note: This indent will help the burgers from puffing up while you grill them.

Grill the burgers, uncovered, for 3 minutes on the first side. Flip and continue cooking for another 3 minutes for medium-rare, and 4 minutes for medium. Remove from grill and immediately top with the cheese.

Butter the buns and place on the grill. Toast for about 1 minute and remove from grill.

Build your burgers by topping with the bacon, Secret Sauce, coleslaw, and tomatoes. Add onion rings if desired.

I hope you'll try the recipe for your family, because this recipe has a five star rating.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Time Marches On

I thought today I would continue my ramblings about myself in regard to age. I will be 65 on January 13, 2010. I am amazed to have gotten this ripe! I kept thinking I would always be hale and hearty, but age kept creeping up on me. Let me tell you why I am blogging about this. Yesterday I had to have all my upper teeth surgically removed because all the enamel was gone and the teeth kept breaking off into my food bites, etc. I am quite miserable today. The swelling is so uncomfortable, and I have pain because the stitches are constantly being pulled and rubbed by my new upper plate. I was advised by a friend of mine who is a dentist, and lives in another state, to get my dentist to place two implants in and then insert a permanent full upper set of teeth. Lovely thought, except our dental insurance doesn't pay for such work. But after today I can tell you I will be finding a way to earn the money to have the implants placed! The roof of my mouth is completely covered by the plate and I cannot taste my food, nor can I feel the food either. This is barbaric! People have been losing their teeth since Adam and Eve, for Heaven's sake, why can't implants be available to everyone? It would be so much more cost effective and esthetically correct. That is why I hate dentistry! It is still in the Dark Ages for the majority of people; and whoever thought of creating dentures should be SHOT! I HATE mine! I've avoided getting my teeth fixed for years because it is so painful, embarrassing and the dentists and their assistants are so rude and un-caring. With something being so personal why is it still so hard to deal with? I could write a book on the reasons I hate dentistry! I did everything they ever told me to do - even to getting my teeth cleaned and scaled every six months and I still lost them. I do have my lower teeth, but that is little consolation.

You see, now I have to tell you how I now look - because of the loss of teeth you end up with no lips! All the contour of my face has been completely distorted. I hate both how I look and how I feel. That's why I put off getting the work done for so long. We constantly pay the premiums on our insurance and this is what we get for it. Because most all medical care is rendered to people after the age of 65. Maybe I ought to be happy about "Death Panels"! NOT!!!!

To end this horrible banter, I want all of you who read this to save up your money so you can get implants when the time comes to lose your teeth. Currently it cost's more than $26,000 to replace all 32 teeth. That's at the rate of $825 per tooth, and you are not given any breaks - that's considered very reasonable. You need to mortgage your home to get teeth that look and feel real and are useful.

Good luck to you when the time comes for your teeth to be replaced. Perhaps by then there will only be implants and no false teeth.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Prophetic Warnings

In lieu of the Scriptures and the information therein I am declaring the current California situation with the fires as fulfillment of prophecy! Ha! How hard was that to figure out? It's 8:44 AM and it's all dark and yellow outside and I've been smelling the smoke for so many days now that I hardly notice it any longer.

Oh, and not to forget my current Obama rants, please note - our Constitution is now "hanging by a thread." This means only the Priesthood can save our dear Constitution - does that mean Mitt Romney will become the U.S. President in 2012? I certainly hope so.

Now, I want to show you the newest Rainbow Coalition staff member, who has been appointed by Jesse Jackson. If this doesn't worry you I don't know what does:

After you read this, click on the snopes link at the bottom of the email. It does confirm it and has some added facts. Unbelievable. What's next?!!

Where is Nancy Pelosi screaming about the culture of corruption? Mute, eh!

Jesse Jackson's Newest Staff Member

You can't make up stuff better than this!

Isn't politics grand?


Jesse Jackson's Newest Staff Member

Mel Reynolds

Jesse Jackson has added former Chicago Democrat

Congressman Mel to Rainbow/PUSH Coalition's payroll.

Reynolds was among the 176 criminals excused in President Clinton's last-minute forgiveness spree. Reynolds received a commutation of his six-and-a-half-year
federal sentence for 15 convictions of wire fraud, bank fraud, and lies to the Federal Election Commission. He is more notorious, however, for concurrently serving
five years for sleeping with an underage campaign volunteer.This is a first in American politics:

An ex-congressman who had sex with a subordinate...won clemency from a president who had sex with a subordinate...then was hired by a clergyman who had sex with a subordinate!

His new job?

Ready for this??




Wednesday, August 5, 2009

American Capitalism Gone With A Whimper

Subject: Pravda: American Capitalism Gone With A Whimper



Snopes website confirms this article is authentic and appeared on the editorial page of the English language version of the Pravda website in Russia this last April.

PS….The Author’s website “Mat Rodina” literally translates to “Mother Russia”

American capitalism gone with a whimper

27.04.2009 Source: Pravda.Ru
URL: http://english.pravda.ru/opinion/columnists/107459-american_capitalism-0

It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.

True, the situation has been well prepared on and off for the past century, especially the past twenty years. The initial testing grounds was conducted upon our Holy Russia and a bloody test it was. But we Russians would not just roll over and give up our freedoms and our souls, no matter how much money Wall Street poured into the fists of the Marxists.

Those lessons were taken and used to properly prepare the American populace for the surrender of their freedoms and souls, to the whims of their elites and betters.
First, the population was dumbed down through a politicized and substandard education system based on pop culture, rather then the classics. Americans know more about their favorite TV dramas then the drama in DC that directly affects their lives. They care more for their "right" to choke down a McDonalds burger or a BurgerKing burger than for their constitutional rights. Then they turn around and lecture us about our rights and about our "democracy". Pride blinds the foolish.
Then their faith in God was destroyed, until their churches, all tens of thousands of different "branches and denominations" were for the most part little more then Sunday circuses and their televangelists and top protestant mega preachers were more then happy to sell out their souls and flocks to be on the "winning" side of one pseudo Marxist politician or another. Their flocks may complain, but when explained that they would be on the "winning" side, their flocks were ever so quick to reject Christ in hopes for earthly power. Even our Holy Orthodox churches are scandalously liberalized in America.

The final collapse has come with the election of Barack Obama. His speed in the past three months has been truly impressive. His spending and money printing has been a record setting, not just in America's short history but in the world. If this keeps up for more then another year, and there is no sign that it will not, America at best will resemble the Wiemar Republic and at worst Zimbabwe.

These past two weeks have been the most breath taking of all. First came the announcement of a planned redesign of the American Byzantine tax system, by the very thieves who used it to bankroll their thefts, loses and swindles of hundreds of billions of dollars. These make our Russian oligarchs look little more then ordinary street thugs, in comparison. Yes, the Americans have beat our own thieves in the shear volumes. Should we congratulate them?

These men, of course, are not an elected panel but made up of appointees picked from the very financial oligarchs and their henchmen who are now gorging themselves on trillions of American dollars, in one bailout after another. They are also usurping the rights, duties and powers of the American congress (parliament). Again, congress has put up little more then a whimper to their masters.

Then came Barack Obama's command that GM's (General Motor) president step down from leadership of his company. That is correct, dear reader, in the land of "pure" free markets, the American president now has the power, the self given power, to fire CEOs and we can assume other employees of private companies, at will. Come hither, go dither, the centurion commands his minions.

So it should be no surprise, that the American president has followed this up with a "bold" move of declaring that he and another group of unelected, chosen stooges will now redesign the entire automotive industry and will even be the guarantee of automobile policies. I am sure that if given the chance, they would happily try and redesign it for the whole of the world, too. Prime Minister Putin, less then two months ago, warned Obama and UK's Blair, not to follow the path to Marxism, it only leads to disaster. Apparently, even though we suffered 70 years of this Western sponsored horror show, we know nothing, as foolish, drunken Russians, so let our "wise" Anglo-Saxon fools find out the folly of their own pride.
Again, the American public has taken this with barely a whimper...but a "freeman" whimper.

So, should it be any surprise to discover that the Democratically controlled Congress of America is working on passing a new regulation that would give the American Treasury department the power to set "fair" maximum salaries, evaluate performance and control how private companies give out pay raises and bonuses? Senator Barney Franks, a social pervert basking in his homosexuality (of course, amongst the modern, enlightened American societal norm, as well as that of the general West, homosexuality is not only not a looked down upon life choice, but is often praised as a virtue) and his Marxist enlightenment, has led this effort. He stresses that this only affects companies that receive government monies, but it is retroactive and taken to a logical extreme, this would include any company or industry that has ever received a tax break or incentive.

The Russian owners of American companies and industries should look thoughtfully at this and the option of closing their facilities down and fleeing the land of the Red as fast as possible. In other words, divest while there is still value left.
The proud American will go down into his slavery with out a fight, beating his chest and proclaiming to the world, how free he really is. The world will only snicker.

Stanislav Mishin

The article has been reprinted with the kind permission from the author and originally appears on his blog, Mat Rodina

© 1999-2009. «PRAVDA.Ru». When reproducing our materials in whole or in part, hyperlink to PRAVDA.Ru should be made. The opinions and views of the authors do not always coincide with the point of view of PRAVDA.Ru's editors.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

When Will We Believe

We always think.... "that will never happen in America"

1. What if I had told you in October 2008, before the last
presidential election, that before Barack Obama's first 100 days in
office, the federal government would be in control of both the
mortgage and the banking industries? That 19 of America's largest bank would be forced to undergo "stress tests" by the federal government which would determine that they were "insufficiently capitalized" so they must be supervised by the government?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

2. What if I had told you that within Barack Obama's first 100 days in office the federal government would be the largest shareholder in two of the US Big Three automakers - GM, and Chrysler? That the government would kick out the CEO's of these companies and appoint hand-picked executives with zero experience in the auto industry and that executive compensation would be determined not by a Board of Directors but by the government?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

3. What if I had told you that Barack Obama would appoint 32
"Czars", without congressional approval, accountable only to him - not to the voters - who would have control over a wide range of US policy decisions? That there would be a Stimulus Accountability Czar, an Urban Czar, a Compensation Czar, an Iran Czar, an Auto Industry Czar, a Cyber Security Czar, an Energy Czar, a Bank Bailout Czar, and more than
a 20 other government bureaucrats with unchecked regulatory powers over US domestic and foreign policy? And that the “Regulatory Czar” (The new gatekeeper between the President and HIS CABINET) believes that it is ok to “abort” children up to the AGE OF TWO (or until they understand that “a tomorrow” existed)? Or that Animals should be given the right to appear in court and that a well trained BORDER COLLIE is more valuable to the country than a retarded child (Read his book

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

4. What if I had told you that the federal deficit would be $915
billion in the first six months of the Obama presidency - with a
projected annual deficit of $1.75 trillion - triple the $454.8 billion
in 2008, for which the previous administration was highly criticized by Obama and his fellow Democrats? That congress would pass Obama's $3.53 trillion federal budget for fiscal 2010? That the projected deficit over the next ten years would be greater than $10 trillion? Or that if all the promises made in the stimulus packages were to come due at once, we would be in
hock to the tune of $23.7 TRILLION Instantly?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

5. What if I had told you that the Obama Justice Department would order FBI agents to read Miranda rights to high-value detainees captured on the battlefield and held at US military detention facilities in Afghanistan? That Obama would order the closing of the Guantanamo detention facility with no plan for the disposition of the 200-plus individuals held there? That several of the suspected terrorists at Guantanamo would be sent to live in freedom in Bermuda at the expense of the US government?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

6. What if I had told you that the federal government would seek powers to seize key companies whose failures could "jeopardize he financial system"? That a new regulatory agency would be proposed by Obama to control loans, credit cards, mortgage-backed securities, and other financial products offered to the public?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

7. What if I had told you that Obama would travel to the Middle
East, bow before the Saudi king, and repeatedly apologize for America's past actions? That he would travel to Latin America where he would warmly greet Venezuela's strongman Hugo Chavez and sit passively in the audience while Nicaraguan Marxist thug Daniel Ortega charged America with terrorist aggression in Central America? That he would diss Israel and not make a fuss over Iran building nukes, killing freedom fightersor N Korea blowing up missile after missile? Or that Hillary Clinton
would go to India this week and tell them that “global warming” was all our fault?

Would you have said, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

8. What if I were to tell you that the Supreme Court threw away your Miranda Rights in May of this year?

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

9. What if I were to tell you that the Cap and Trade Bill passed in
Congress says that in order for you to sell your house, you must
upgrade anything that is not energy starred to the current standards and that you would have to have a government employee enter your home for inspection, and certification to sell your home? What if I told you these upgrades can include your roof, your appliances, your windows and your plumbing and that they MUST be done BEFORE you put your house on
the market? A buyer would not be able to accept your house "as is."

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

10. What if I were to tell you that the Healthcare Reform bill now in committee says on Pg 22 that the Government will audit books of ALL EMPLOYERS that self insure, that on PG 50 Section 152, Health Care will be provided to ALL non-US residents, illegal or otherwise and that on Pg170 Lines 1-3 it states that any NONRESIDENT Alien is exempt from individual taxes (Americans will pay)? Or that on Pg 239 Line 14-24 it
says that government will reduce physician services for Medicaid
(Seniors, low income, poor affected) or that on Pg 354 Sec 1177 – it says they will RESTRICT enrollment of Special needs persons and that on PG 427 Lines 15-24 it says they have even the right to mandate programs on orders to end your life. The Government has a say in how and when your life ends. Or that on Pg 59 HC Bill lines 21-24 it states the Government will have direct access to your banks accounts for funds transfers?
Here's the full Health Care bill that sits in the House.

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

11. Okay, now what if I were to tell you that Obama wants to
dismantle conservative talk radio through the imposition of a new
"Fairness Doctrine"? That he wants to curtail the First Amendment rights of those who may disagree with his policies via internet blogs, cable news networks, or advocacy ads?

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

12. What if I were to tell you that the Obama Justice Department wants to limit your Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms? That the federal government wants to reinstate the so-called "assault weapons" ban which would prohibit the sale of any type of firearm that doesn't require the shooter to pull the trigger every time a round is fired? That Obama's Attorney General also wants to eliminate the sale of virtually all handguns, which most citizens choose for self-defense?

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

13.. What if I were to tell you that the Obama plan is to eliminate states' rights guaranteed by the Tenth Amendment and give the federal government sweeping new powers over policies currently under the province of local and state governments and voted on by the people? That Obama plans to control the schools, energy production, the environment, health care, and the wealth of every US citizen?

Would you say, "C'mon, that will never happen in America"?

14. What if I were to tell you that the president, the courts, and
the federal government have ignored the US Constitution and have seized powers which the founders of our country fought to restrict? That the last presidential election may have been our last truly free election for some time to come? That our next presidential election may look similar to the one recently held in Iran?

I know, I know what you say, "That will never happen in America".

15. What if I told you that there will be even more of this to come in the next few years?

I know what you'd say, "That will never happen in America”.

Well, I’ve got some really bad news for you: It did happen and more of it will happen!!

Please wake up America! Please start now and realize that although it might be too late, we still have a fighting chance if we all get involved! Write and Call your representatives. Go to tea parties. Join a group. Cry out from the rooftops! The camps are next and if we do not believe that, we did
not learn our history very well.

Gentlemen, it appears we are out of time and money. Now we shall have to think." - Winston Churchill

“If you spent a million dollars a day going back to the birth of
Christ, that wouldn’t even come close to just one trillion dollars –
$23.7 trillion is a staggering figure.” – Rep. Issa (R-CA) on exact
spending totals of the 2008/09 Stimulus Packages and they tell us it is not enough.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Facebook Fiasco

I'm so ticked off. Someone hacked my Facebook account and started asking all my friends for money, telling them via the Chat tool that I was in London, England and had been mugged at gun-point. Then someone told Facebook what happened and they disabled my account. I've been in touch with Facebook and did everything they asked me to do. Now it's been more than a week and I still can't log on. I am very angry about this and cannot do anything about it. Arggghhh!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Remembering the Fourth of July

Sent to me by LuAnn Heacock.

And now some history:

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence ?

Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.

Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.

Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.

Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.

They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

What kind of men were they?

Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated, but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.

Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.

Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.

Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.

At the battle of Yorktown , Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.

John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.

So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday and silently thank these patriots. It's not much to ask for the price they paid.

Remember: freedom is never free!

Patriotism is NOT a sin, and the Fourth of July has more to it than beer, picnics, and baseball games.

A Little Football Wisdom

Whoever says football is just a game is - well - not spiritual or patriotic! Here's A Little Football Wisdom: (USC - Fight On!) Another great contribution from my cousin, John Labeots.

#1. 'Football is only a game. Spiritual things are eternal. Nevertheless, Beat Texas '
Seen on a church sign in Arkansas prior to the 1969 game.
#2. 'After you retire, there's only one big event left... and I ain't ready for that.' Bobby Bowden / Florida State
#3. 'The man who complains about the way the ball bounces is likely to be the one who dropped it.' Lou Holtz / Arkansas
#4. 'When you win, nothing hurts.' Joe Namath / Alabama
#5. 'Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated.' Lou Holtz / Arkansas
#6. 'If you want to walk the heavenly streets of gold, you gotta know the password, 'Roll, tide, roll!' Bear Bryant / Alabama
#7. 'A school without football is in danger of deteriorating into a medieval study hall.' Frank Leahy / Notre Dame
#8. 'There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you.' Woody Hayes / Ohio State
#9. 'I don't expect to win enough games to be put on NCAA probation. I just want to win enough to warrant an investigation.' Bob Devaney / Nebraska
#10. 'In Alabama , an atheist is someone who doesn't believe in Bear Bryant.' Wally Butts / Georgia
#11. 'You can learn more character on the two-yard line than anywhere else in life.' Paul Dietzel / LSU
#12. 'It's kind of hard to rally around a math class.' Bear Bryant / Alabama
#13. When asked if Fayetteville was the end of the world. 'No, but you can see it from here.' Lou Holtz / Arkansas ...
#14. 'I make my practices real hard because if a player is a quitter, I want him to quit in practice, not in a game.' Bear Bryant / Alabama
#15. 'There's one sure way to stop us from scoring-give us the ball near the goal line.' Matty Bell / SMU
#16. 'Lads, you're not to miss practice unless your parents died or you died.' Frank Leahy / Notre Dame
#17. 'I never graduated from Iowa , but I was only there for two terms - Truman's and Eisenhower's.' Alex Karras / Iowa
#18. 'My advice to defensive players: Take the shortest route to the ball and arrive in a bad humor.' Bowden Wyatt / Tennessee
#19. 'I could have been a Rhodes Scholar, except for my grades.' Duffy Daugherty / Michigan State
#20. 'Always remember... Goliath was a 40 point favorite over David.' Shug Jordan / Auburn
#21. 'They cut us up like boarding house pie. And that's real small pieces.' Darrell Royal / Texas
#22. 'Show me a good and gracious loser, and I'll show you a failure.' Knute Rockne / Notre Dame
#23. 'They whipped us like a tied up goat.' Spike Dykes / Texas Tech
#24. 'I asked Darrell Royal, the coach of the Texas Longhorns, why he didn't recruit me and he said: 'Well, Walt, we took a look at you and you weren't any good.' Walt Garrison / Oklahoma State
#25. 'Son, you've got a good engine, but your hands aren't on the steering wheel.' Bobby Bowden / Florida State
#26. 'Football is not a contact sport - it is a collision sport. Dancing is a contact sport.' Duffy Daugherty / Michigan State
#27. After USC lost 51-0 to Notre Dame, his postgame message to his team: 'All those who need showers, take them.' John McKay / USC
#28. 'If lessons are learned in defeat, our team is getting a great education.' Murray Warmath / Minnesota
#29. 'The only qualifications for a lineman are to be big and dumb. To be a back, you only have to be dumb.' Knute Rockne / Notre Dame
#30. 'Oh, we played about like three tons of buzzard puke this afternoon.' Spike Dykes / Texas Tech
#31. 'It isn't necessary to see a good tackle. You can hear it.' Knute Rockne / Notre Dame
#32. 'We live one day at a time and scratch where it itches.' Darrell Royal / Texas
#33. 'We didn't tackle well today but we made up for it by not blocking.' Wilson Matthews / Little Rock Central High School
#34. 'Three things can happen when you throw the ball, and two of them are bad. Darrell Royal / University of Texas
#35. 'I've found that prayers work best when you have big players.' Knute Rockne / Notre Dame
#36. 'Gentlemen, it is better to have died a small boy than to fumble this football.' John Heisman

Good Advice From a 90 Year Old Woman

(This was sent to me by my cousin, John Labeots - really, really well said.)

Live well, Laugh often, & Love with all of your heart!

Written By Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written."

My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.

3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.

5. Pay off your credit cards every month.

6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.

8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.

10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.

13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.

15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.

16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.

19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.

20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.

21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.

22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.

23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.

24. The most important sex organ is the brain.

25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will this matter?'

27. Always choose life.

28. Forgive everyone everything.

29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.

31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

33. Believe in miracles.

34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.

35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.

36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.

37. Your children get only one childhood.

38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's,we'd grab ours back.

41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

42. The best is yet to come.

43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

44. Yield.

45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift."

The Hurrier I Go the Behinder I Get!

As the old saying goes. I've not added anything to my blog for a month. It's not that our lives have been boring - just busy. For one thing Ramona and Dan added a new baby boy (Benjamin) to our larger family.

He's adorable, all sweet and with long dark hair and skin that is olive toned. He wasn't tiny, rather 9 lbs 11 oz and 22 1/2 inches long. I don't know where Ramona stuffed all of that inside her tiny body! Yikes! We're so glad he has arrived and that both mom and baby are well. He had a couple of problems after being born - he was jaundiced and wasn't gaining any weight. Both of these have been addressed and he is fit as a fiddle now and we are thankful.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Our New Chronis Grand Child

We welcome our newest grandchild into our family.

Benjamin Lloyd Chronis
Born at 10:14 AM on May 27, 2009
9 pounds 11 ounces - 22 inches

We are sooo proud of Ramona for all her sacrifice that brought this little boy into our family. We know she suffered not only through her labor and delivery, but also in carrying this very large child inside her. Ramona is the finest mother I know and is an example of patience, long suffering and grace. I am her mother and I know most women fit this description, but I want everyone who reads this to recognize her character as do I.

Ramona received more than 1300 text messages of congratulations in less than one hour after Benjamin's birth. She is so beloved by so many.

You gain a better perspective of Benjamin's size when seeing him in the arms of his nine year old brother, Elias.

Ewa-Solange is so happy to have her new little brother in her arms. She will be a very sweet big sister for Benjamin.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Choose Your Ward (Mormon Humor)

I got this from my friend Gail - too darned cute to leave behind.

Choose your ward Find your niche in specialty wards
Robert Kirby Tribune columnist - Salt Lake Tribune

Most Sunday mornings, you'll find me on a pew in the Rosecrest 1st Ward chapel. It's where I'm supposed to go to church. Lucky for me, it's also where I want to go. Technically, Mormons don't have a choice. For church, we're bound by the geography of the ward boundary. We worship where we live.

The only time Mormons can switch wards without also contacting a Realtor is when we attend specialty wards. For example, I went to a Spanish-speaking ward in West Jordan for a while. Specialty wards allow members with specific common needs to worship together and support each other in their exclusive part of the Lord's vineyard. There are (or have been) lots of LDS specialty wards, including singles wards, college wards, deaf wards, ethnic wards and nudist wards.

OK, I made up that last one. There are even seasonal "snowbird wards" in places where Mormon RV owners congregate.

I talked it over with my friend (despite a restraining order) Ken Wallentine. We think the specialty-ward idea needs to be improved on in our ever-changing and increasingly divided culture.

For example, there needs to be a late ward, a ward Mormons who are perpetually late for church could attend and not feel bad about dragging their herd in 15 minutes late. The only problem with a late ward would be showing up late for a meeting that was supposed to start late in the first place. Eventually, you would end up with a ward that ran out of
time before it started. "Welcome to the Tardy 3rd Ward, brothers and sisters. We will close now by singing hymn No.. 145."

Given the high birthrate among Mormons, I thought about the need for maternity wards. Except that we already have those. They're called married student wards.

A Star Trek ward might do well. The bishop would preside from "the bridge" instead of the stand. High-council Sunday would be referred to as a "Klingon Sunday."

Harley riders congregate to the exclusion of just about everyone else. Why not an LDS biker ward? White shirts and neckties go well with black leather.

Ken really wants to attend a concealed-weapons ward. He says church would be a lot more interesting if real personal risks were involved in disagreeing with a lesson.

There could be a texting ward for teenagers. Bear your testimony with your thumb. In 25 years, they'll all belong to carpal-tunnel wards.

At the less-active ward, maybe there'll be a meeting and maybe there won't.

Testimony meeting in an anger-management ward might be interesting. Nobody's going to sleep through, "HEY! I KNOW THE CHURCH IS TRUE, STUPID!"

A big hit would be the Multi Level Marketing ward, also known as a "Gadianton robber ward." With all the financial scamming that goes on in this culture, it would be nice to have them all in one place for a three-hour block weekly.

I think a Democrat wa rd is a good idea, although in Utah the best we could probably hope for is a Democrat branch.

Monday, May 11, 2009

I Have the Answers

You can always rely on good old Maxine to have the Answers!

My cousin, Betty Wontorek sent this to me - it is thought provoking and very funny. What makes it funny is that it is so simplistic! Okay Washington! Why can't you come up with such easy answers? Hmmmmmm. . . ? (So all laughing out loud!)

Everyone concentrates on the problems we're having in this country lately -- illegal immigration, hurricane recovery, alligators attacking people in Florida.

...... not me -- I concentrate on solutions for the problems -- it's a win-win situation.

* Dig a moat the length of the Mexican border.
* Send the dirt to New Orleans to raise the level of the levees.
* Put the Florida alligators in the moat along the Mexican border.

Any other problems you would like for me to solve today?

Think about this:
1. Cows
2. The Constitution
3. The Ten Commandments

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Canada almost three years ago, right to the stall where she slept in the state of Washington? And, they tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 11 million illegal aliens wandering around our country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow..

They keep talking about drafting a Constitution for Iraq .... why don't we just give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, it has worked for over 200 years, and we're not using it anymore.

The real reason that we can't have the Ten Commandments posted in a courthouse is this -- you cannot post 'Thou Shalt Not Steal' 'Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery' and 'Thou Shall Not Lie' in a building full of lawyers, judges and politicians ... it creates a hostile work environment.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Brother Walt Lingren

I had not seen my older brother, Walt for more than 13 years. So imagine how happy I was to get a call from him a few weeks ago. He said he and his wife Janice were coming to LA to go on a cruise and wanted to know if they could visit us for a couple of days. I was ecstatic and of course told them yes. So on the appointed day I picked them up at LAX and brought them to our home. They were so pleased to come to our home, and we were so glad to have them. You see, in all my adult lifetime Walt has NEVER been to my home. I was glad to have him see how we live and what our lives are like. He found out we are VERY busy, all the time.

I took them to a concert at USC the night they flew in. The concert was really special because Lauren (our granddaughter) was playing in the symphony orchestra. Lauren is currently second chair cellist and this is only her sophomore year at USC, which tells you what kind of skills she has.

The concert was fabulous and we went to Gladstones for ice cream afterward and Lauren got to know them better, and they got to talk quite a bit with her.

The next day I took them sight-seeing. We went to The Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax and we got to go to the shop where Percia (another of our granddaughters) works.

We stayed for lunch and then I took them to Rodeo Drive so they could see the 'beautiful' people.

Then in the afternoon I took them to visit our church and I played the organ for them. Neither one of them ever knew I play the piano and the organ, so they were extremely surprised. That tickled me so much. I was very proud to play our lovely pipe organ we have at the Wilshire Building for them.

The next morning (Saturday - sailing day) I made a huge breakfast for us all, we devoured everything and really enjoyed ourselves. We left the house a 11 AM and got to the Port of Los Angeles at noon.

We stayed until they got their luggage taken and then we left. I wish we could have gone on the cruise with them, because Tony and I adore cruising. So we made a promise we will take one together the next time.

I was able to re-connect Walt with his former high school sweetheart, Janice a few months ago and they have been inseparable ever since. Janice has always been my dear friend and although we had not seen one another in 49 years we picked up our friendship right where we left it off. This was truly such a fantastic reunion and I'm so happy they made us part of it. I can't wait to see them again.

Friday, April 3, 2009

The Saga of the Vengeance of the Flu - 2009

On March 23rd we picked up Elias, Katie and Justin (three of our grandchildren) and brought them home for the week while their parents and sister travelled across Europe as part of a Junior High School group from Lancaster, CA. That evening while watching TV poor Justin (only 5)hurled clear across the room - and the games began. He vomited all night and into the night as well. He wore a path from his bed to the bathroom several times, never quite making it each time. Poor kid. By the morning he was exhausted and slept off and on most of the following day.

By late afternoon the next day Elias began the same ritual. So Tony was hauling clothes and bedding back and forth from the laundry room - several times. He ended up washing all the boys clothes from their dresser drawers. Then Katie got it and on it went.

The next day I went down and spend more than 22 hours in bed, trying to keep from hurling and unable to move more than a finger. Tony was chief cook and bottle washer trying to keep us together body and soul. I barely made it out of the bed the next day and it was time to take Justin and Katie back to Lancaster to take them home so their mother could pick them up for the weekend.

Tony held on until we got home from dropping them off and then hit the toilet with his head in a vengeance! I was not good for anything, barely walking around like a zombie. Elias was recovering but still not able to eat well. None of us could eat a meal for about three days because of the constant nausea.

So - comes Monday morning and we had to take Elias to the airport to fly to Arizona to visit for the next week with his other grandparents. We saw him off and headed to Miguel and Greg's and had a delicious lunch of breaded filet of sole with refried beans and Greg's especially delicious rice. It tasted sooooo good. We hadn't been able to eat a complete meal for the whole week, so what a treat! Thank goodness for Miguel and Greg.

Then Ramona, Dan and Ewa returned from Europe. Two days later Dan promptly hit the bed with a bucket beside him and Ramona and Ewa are awaiting their turn. I pray they will be alright, especially Ramona because she's entering the 8th month of her pregnancy and I'm not certain what effect the flu would have on her and her unborn son. Such a terrible present for Ramona and her crew upon returning home from a whirlwind tour of Europe. They all have severe jet lag as it is, they don't need this as well. God bless them all.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Purpose of Mormon Temples

Take a look at this wonderful video - it explains the reason we build and use our temples. Remember, to click on the title of this article to take you to the web site and video.

Purpose of Mormon Temples From The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has created a short video that explains the purpose of Mormon temples.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Father's Day Shirt and Tie Card

You know the drill, cick on the title of this post and it will take you to the instructions for making this great Father's Day Shirt and Tie card. Enjoy the craft, do it with or without children.

Father's Day Bookmarks

I love these and have made the card that goes with them. I will post the card instructions separately. To access this web site just click on the title of this post, it will take you directly to Martha's page. Have fun!

Friday, March 6, 2009

French Bread Pizza

I've been asked several times to post this recipe, so here it is.

This is an all-time family favorite in our house.

1 Loaf French Bread, sliced lengthwise
1 Small jar Prego Spaghetti Sauce
1 lb bulk sausage crumbled, fried and drained
1 Small pkg sliced pepperoni
1 Med Onion
1 Bell Pepper
1 Small Can Olives (sliced)
2 C Mozarella Cheese
1/2 C Parmesan Cheese
Margarine for spreading on French Bread

Slice onion into rings and pepper into narrow strips; saute veggies in oil until onions are translucent and pepper is wilted but still crisp. Drain on paper towel or paper bag and prepare sausage or lay rings of pepperoni on top of Prego.

Cover cookie sheet with foil, lay both halves of French Bread on cookie sheet. Spread margarine on both halves, then 1/2 jar Prego on each half of loaf. Divide prepared sausage or lay rings of pepperoni atop Prego. Sprinkle 1/2 Mozarella on each half of French Bread, then sprinkle each half generously with Parmesan cheese. Bake in oven at 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes. Serves 4-6 generously.

You can add/subtract whatever your family likes on pizza.

*Note - you must spread the bread with margarine or the sauce will drain down into the bread, olive oil will not do.

This is my own original recipe and you can adjust it to you own taste. You can also re-constitute the veggies from dried food storage as well as use TVP in place of the meat.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Don't Mess With Old Ladies!

An older lady gets pulled over for speeding...

Older Woman: Is there a problem, Officer?

Officer: Ma'am, you were speeding.

Older Woman: Oh, I see.

Officer: Can I see your license please?

Older Woman: I'd give it to you but I don't have one.

Officer: Don't have one?

Older Woman: Lost it, 4 years ago for drunk driving.

Officer: I see... Can I see your vehicle registration papers please.

Older Woman: I can't do that.

Officer: Why not?

Older Woman: I stole this car.

Officer: Stole it?

Older Woman: Yes, and I killed and hacked up the owner.

Officer: You what?

Older Woman: His body parts are in plastic bags in the trunk if you want to see them.

The Officer looks at the woman and slowly backs away to his car and calls for back up.

Within minutes 5 police cars circle the car. A senior officer slowly approaches the car, clasping his half drawn gun.

Officer 2: Ma'am, could you step out of your vehicle please! The woman steps out of her vehicle.

Older woman: Is there a problem sir?

Officer 2: One of my officers told me that you have stolen this car and murdered the owner.

Older Woman: Murdered the owner?

Officer 2: Yes, could you please open the trunk of your car, please.

The woman opens the trunk, revealing nothing but an empty trunk.

Officer 2: Is this your car, ma'am?

Older Woman: Yes, here are the registration papers.
The officer is quite stunned.

Officer 2: One of my officers claims that you do not have a driving license.

The woman digs into her handbag and pulls out a clutch purse and hands it to the officer.

The officer examines the license. He looks quite puzzled.

Officer 2: Thank you ma'am, one of my officers told me you didn't have a license, that you stole this car, and that you murdered and hacked up the owner.

Older Woman: Bet the liar told you I was speeding, too.

Don't Mess With Old Ladies!!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

"W" - the Magic Letter

Okay Roxy - here's my "W" Offering.


- Something I try hard to avoid, and it is so hard because we live in Los Angeles, CA. I suppose it’s hard no matter where you live anymore. I love all the ‘things’ we have, but I am most happy when they are used to make others happy. You know, I have so many kitchen toys and I love to cook and serve others - and all my craft stuff, well I share them with anyone who is interested, but I do wish I could find someone who loves to play crafter as much as do I. The dictionary meaning of worldly is:

world•ly (w├╗rld
adj. world•li•er, world•li•est
1. Of, relating to, or devoted to the temporal world.
2. Experienced in human affairs; sophisticated or worldly-wise: "an experienced and worldly man who had been almost everywhere" Willa Cather.
In a worldly manner.

Worldly Wisdom
from 'The Historie of the World' by Sir Walter Raleigh (1614)
IF Fortune and Chance were not sometimes the causes of good and evil in men, but an idle voice, whereby we express success, how comes it then, that so many worthy and wise men depend upon so many unworthy and empty headed fools; that riches and honour are given to external men, and without kernel: and so many learned, virtuous, and valiant men wear out their lives in poor and dejected estates?
In a word there is no other inferior, or apparent cause, beside the partiality of mans affection, but the fashioning and not fashioning of our selves according to the nature of the time wherein we live, for whosoever is most able, and best sufficient to discern, and hath withall an honest and open heart and loving truth. If Princes, or those that govern, endure no other discourse then their own flatteries, then I say such an one, whose virtue and courage forbiddeth him to be base and a dissembler, shall evermore hang under the wheel, which kind of deserving well and receiving ill, we always falsely charge Fortune withall. For whosoever shall tell any great man or Magistrate, that he is not just, the General of an Army, that he is not valiant, and great Ladies that they are not fair, shall never be made a Counselor, a Captain, or a Courtier. Neither is it sufficient to be wise with a wise Prince, valiant with a valiant, and just with him that is just, for such a one hath no estate in his prosperity; but he must also change with the successor, if he be of contrary qualities, sail with the tide of the time, and alter form and condition, as the Estate or the Estates Master changeth: Otherwise how were it possible, that the most base men, and separate from all imitable qualities, could so often attain to honour and riches, but by such an observant slavish course? These men having nothing else to value themselves by, but a counterfeit kind of wondering at other men, and by making them believe that all their vices are virtues, and all their dusty actions crystalline, have yet in all ages prospered equally with the most virtuous, if not exceeded them. For according to Menander, Omnis insipiens arrogantia et plausibus capitur, Every fool is won with his own pride and others flattering applause: so as whosoever will live altogether out of himself, and study other men's humours, and observe them, shall never be unfortunate; and on the contrary, that man which prizes truth and virtue (except the season wherein he lives be of all these, and of all sorts of goodness fruitfull) shall never prosper by the possession or profession thereof. It is also a token of a worldly wise man, not to wait or contend in vain against the nature of times wherein he lives: for such a one is often the author of his own misery, but best it were to follow the advice, which the Pope gave the Bishops of that age, out of Ovid, while the Arian Heresy raged:


Boy! Do we ever have windows in our home - really important for me. (This picture shows our bedroom, which is currently under rennovation, to be completed this week) I want a daily perspective on my surroundings and I like to watch what’s going on around me. I guess what I’m saying is WINDOWS are for WATCHING!

When thinking about my childhood I love to remember the wonderful times I used to have at a lake in Washington State called Wandermere.

My Dad used to be a lifeguard there when he was a young man, so he used to take us there to swim and boat and have lots of family fun. When we would go there everyone knew him, we couldn’t walk ten feet without running into someone who recognized him. Those days were wonderful.


How I love them. I like to go to the seaside and watch them when they are in season here, when they have come down to feed and play, they are stately and beautiful. I really like the Prudential Insurance Company’s TV commercials that show the blue whale.

World Conference

of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Probably the most wonderful time of the year, and we are so blessed because it happens twice a year. When we listen to the prophets speak we are uplifted and blessed in ways unspeakable. I remember a story about a man who was not a member of the church who was very prosperous and lived in Utah. When all his neighbors crops failed around him but his didn’t he was asked by them what he attributed his good fortune to - he said he listened to the prophet twice a year at conference time and did what he said to do. Isn’t that an amazing story? A Prophet is without honor in his own country - the Savior said.

“When you Wish Upon a Star” is a famous song sung by a cartoon figure by Walt Disney.

Jiminy Cricket

I wish for the best in all situations for each and everyone of us.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

86 Year Old Lady's Letter to Her Bank

Shown below, is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by an 86 year old woman. The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in the New York Times.

Dear Sir:

I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I endeavored to pay my plumber last month.
By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have elapsed between his presenting the check and the arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it. I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my entire pension, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only eight years. You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty for the inconvenience caused to your bank. My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways.
I noticed that whereas I personally answer your telephone calls and letters, --- when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the impersonal, overcharging, prerecorded, faceless entity which your bank has become.

From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a flesh-and-blood person. My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and hereafter no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check,addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you must nominate.

Be aware that it is an offense under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope. Please find attached an Application Contact which I require your chosen employee to complete. I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no alternative. Please note that all copies of his or her medical history must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof. In due course, at MY convenience, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me. I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of button presses required of me to access my account balance on your phone bank service. As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Let me level the playing field even further. When you call me, press buttons as follows:


#1. To make an appointment to see me

#2. To query a missing payment.

#3. To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
#4 To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping

#5. To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.

#6. To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home

#7. To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required. Password will be communicated to you at a later date to that Authorized Contact mentioned earlier.

#8. To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 7..
#9. To make a general complaint or inquiry. The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service.

#10. This is a second reminder to press* for English. While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.

Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement. May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous New Year?
Your Humble Client

(Remember: This was written by an 86 year old woman -'YA JUST GOTTA LOVE " US SENIORS" !!!!! )

And remember: Don't make old People mad. We don't like being old in the first place, so it doesn't take much to set us off.

The Trouble With Socialism

"The trouble with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money"
–Margaret Thatcher.

The Invisible Mother

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response,
the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the
phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't
you see I'm on the phone?' Obviously, not.

No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the
floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can
see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am
only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie
this? & can you open this?

Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm
a clock to ask, 'What time is it?'; I'm a satellite guide to
answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order,
'Right around 5:30, please.'

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return
of a friend from England .. Janice had just gotten back from a
fabulous trip, and she was going
on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there,
looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard
not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty
pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped
package, and said, 'I brought you this.' It was a book on the great
cathedrals of Europe . I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to
me until I read her inscription:

'To Charlotte , with admiration for the greatness of what you are
building when no one sees.'

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would
discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after
which I could pattern my work: No one can say who built the great
cathedrals - we have no record of their names. These builders gave
their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the
eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit
the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving
a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the
man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a
beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.'
And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It
was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you, Charlotte.

I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you

does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no

cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You

are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.'

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a
disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of
my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn
pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great
builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will
never see finished, to work on something that their name will never
be on.

When I really think about it, I don't want my daughter to tell the
friend she's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, 'My Mom
gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she
hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for
the table.' That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to
myself. I just want her to want to come home. And then, if there is
anything more to say to her friend, to add, 'you're gonna love it

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot see if we're
doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will
marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has
been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Great Barnyard

I got this e-mail from my friend Gail and just had to share it with you all.

The Little Red Hen called all of her neighbors together and said, 'If we plant this wheat, we shall have bread to eat. Who will help me plant it?'
'Not I,' said the cow.
'Not I,' said the duck.
'Not I,' said the pig.
'Not I,' said the goose.
'Then I will do it by myself,' said the little red hen, and so she did. The wheat grew very tall and ripened into golden grain.

'Who will help me reap my wheat?' asked the little red hen.
'Not I,' said the duck..
'Out of my classification,' said the pig.
'I'd lose my seniority,' said the cow.
'I'd lose my unemployment compensation,' said the goose.
'Then I will do it by myself,' said the little red hen, and so she did.

At last it came time to bake the bread.
'Who will help me bake the bread?' asked the little red hen.
'That would be overtime for me,' said the cow.
'I'd lose my welfare benefits,' said the duck.
'I'm a dropout and never learned how,' said the pig.
'If I'm to be the only helper, that's discrimination,' said the goose.

'Then I will do it by myself,' said the little red hen.
She baked five loaves and held them up for all of her neighbors to see. They wanted some and, in fact, demanded a share. But the little red hen said, 'No, I shall eat all five loaves.'

'Excess profits!' cried the cow. (Nancy Pelosi)
'Capitalist leech!' screamed the duck. (Barbara Boxer)
'I demand equal rights!' yelled the goose. (Jesse Jackson)
The pig just grunted in disdain. (Ted Kennedy) And they all painted 'Unfair!' picket signs and marched around and around the little red hen, shouting obscenities.

Then the farmer (Obama) came. He said to the little red hen, 'You must not be so greedy!
'But I earned the bread,' said the little red hen.

'Exactly,' said Barack the farmer. 'That is what makes our free enterprise system so wonderful. Anyone in the barnyard can earn as much as he wants. But under our modern government regulations, the productive workers must divide the fruits of their labor with those who are lazy and idle.'

And they all lived happily ever after, including the little red hen, who smiled and clucked, 'I am grateful, for now I truly understand.'

But her neighbors became quite disappointed in her. She never again baked bread because she joined the 'party' and got her bread free. And all the Democrats smiled. 'Fairness' had been established.

Individual initiative had died, but nobody noticed; perhaps no one cared...so long as there was free bread that 'the rich' were paying for.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Doing The Laundry Without a Washer/Dryer

Clothes Washing Kit

A way to do your laundry in an emergency. You can easily put this together yourself.

5-gallon bucket with lid (cut hole in middle of lid for plunger handle to fit through)
Toilet plunger (brand-new, clean)
Store in bucket:
Liquid laundry detergent
Stain remover/stain stick
Vinegar (add 1/2 cup to rinse water) helps remove soap
Rope (for clothes line)
Clothes pins

To Use:
Empty contents of bucket.
Place water, small amount of detergent, and clothes in bucket.
Move plunger up and down for a few minutes or until clothes are clean.
Remove soapy clothes and ring them out.
Dump out soapy water (on your garden or lawn.)
Place soapy clothes in bucket and fill with clear, clean water.
Add 1/2 cup vinegar to rinse water.
Move plunger up and down to rinse clothing.
Wring out clothes and hang to dry.
Conserve water - use rinse water for next load of laundry.

NOTE: You could store two 5-gallon buckets, stack one inside of the other. Use one bucket for the soapy water and the other for the rinse water. You may be able to wash and rinse a couple of batches of clothes without changing the soapy water depending on how dirty the clothes are.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Valentine's Day

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I want to wish everyone a Happy Valentine's Day, I love giving Valentine's and receiving them too. I think it's a great holiday even if others think it's too commercial. I even like giving/receiving those little school style Valentine cards - they are so clever. Enjoy the day, it's easy to make and send a Valentine. Go to marthastewart.com for ideas if you like. . . I like.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Our New Chronis Grand Child

We are so excited about Ramona and Dan expecting their new baby in the Spring. We can hardly wait to meet our new grandson. Right now we are in a naming war - I can't even imagine what it's like in Dan and Mona's home when the subject of naming the little guy comes up. With six other children already in the house there will definitely be some strong opinions as to a name for the little guy.
I don't really care what they name him, I just hope he comes to Earth safe, sound and healthy! This may be our last grand child so we are truly invested in this coming event. It's been nine years since we've had a new grandchild, so this is really exciting for everyone. Thank you Dan and Ramona for bringing a new child into our family. You are very brave.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

I Can't Wrap My Head Around It . . .

The days pass so quickly and I am overwhelmed when I look around the house and know I MUST get rid of almost everything within the next year and a half. I know we will do it, but it's painful and scary and impossible at the moment. After nearly 39 years together and all the homes we've enjoyed this one ends up being the last one. My friend told me tonight when she looked in my craft closet, "you can't move, look at all this stuff. Where will you put it?" And I just don't know. See - I don't intend on giving up my crafting hobbies at all, and I need all that 'stuff'. And I'll miss our lovely veggie garden so much, not to mention all the bulbs, bushes and flowers. My roses, oh my lovely roses. Oh - and the fruit trees that have provided shade, beauty and delicious fruits. I think I am beginning the mourning phase of the great loss that not living here will bring. I know we can be happy anywhere we are as long as we're together, but that's not the point. This home has sheltered so many people. Not just our family and grandchildren, but friends and acquaintances. Famous folks and regular every day people. I truly regret that it has become a burden to us now. I can only pray a nice family will be able to move here and have lots of fun with their children and grandchildren, just like us. Did I mention I'll miss George? Oh, you don't know him. He's our very fine and well-mannered ghost. I named him George years ago until I found out who he was. He is Marceline Eyraud, the man who built this home for his family more than a hundred years ago. He was born in 1869 in France. He came to the United States in the 1880's knowing the wine producing business. He didn't become a vintner though, he opened two large saloons in the old old city of Los Angeles, near 7th and Alameda. He and his wife built this house for their family and enjoyed it until they passed away in the 1940's. Their influence is all throughout this house. From the fabulous French kitchen to the spacious third floor great room. Mrs. Eyraud was a very religious woman, a devout Catholic. She had all the cupboards in the house built with a cross motif in each one. When we first moved here the children named the linen closets on the mezzanine 'the confessional'. They are crafted to look like the doors on a confessional, this theme is repeated in the big kitchen and the butler's pantry. I have felt the influence of this remarkable, strong and valiant woman who crossed the pond to rear her children in the greatest country in all the world. Her two youngest daughters lived together here until their deaths. The other children all moved out and built their own homes. There are no living descendants of the Eyraud family that are known. I have researched them all and have not found any. I truly wish some of them were still around. I'd have lots of questions for them. Perhaps in another time and place we will join with them and discuss "our home".

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Eli's Blessing Day

When we are young we are so busy being parents we forget to take in the blessings of family on a daily basis. I really believe that's why we're allowed to be grand parents and great-grandparents.

As I watched Tony bless and name Eli (our sixth great-grandchild) descriptive words of the moment failed me, because my heart was full to bursting.

That was November 3, 2008. Two months have passed and I've been able to put things more in perspective. At the time I was very ill and was to have had major surgery that very weekend, but because we had scheduled the blessing for that weekend I had to postpone it - not that I was excited about having the surgery either, but because that was the only day everyone in the family could come for the blessing.

The ceremony at church was beautiful and the words Tony spoke over the baby were unforgetable. The Spirit was so strong. After church we all went to our home for a post-blessing family dinner. I had prepared ham (a HUGE one), potato, macaroni and green salads. And Elisa had provided the cake, which was gorgeous. I'll try and post pictures of the food later. We had invited some very special, important people to our family and were enjoying ourselves immensely, catching up on everyone's life, when through the front door came our daughter Audrey and her daughters Jackie and Joscelyn and Jackie's two small boys (two of our great-grandchildren). You could have knocked everyone in the house over with a feather. We had not seen Audrey for 16 years. Jackie and found me on the internet via Classmates.com. She said she was looking for anyone who knew her mother in high school. I answered her back and told her I was her grandmother and had been looking for them for years. Then I told our daughter, Elisa that I had found Audrey - and she came to California from Utah to bring Lauren back to USC for the school year. Then Elisa and Lauren went out to Valencia and found Audrey and told her about the upcoming blessing and that we wanted them to come. And they did. We had a wonderful re-union and I cannot tell you how grateful I am for the internet and for Classmates.com! Hopefully we will remain connected from now on. I will never take my children for granted again. When I think that after my surgery I came close to leaving this old world then I am so dedicated to keeping my family together from now on. May God bless us all in that effort.

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