Bloggers: Apple or PC?

August 31, 2010

I would love opinions from any of you who visit here on whether you have or would buy an Apple or PC.

But I especially would like to hear from others who write a blog because you may have reasons for or against one because of specific blogging applications.

My sister-in-law and I just visited a large computer store and the salesman we talked to was all about Apple.  He couldn’t say enough good things about it.  But that seems like it would be a big move for us PC people.

So, I’m soliciting opinions about Apple/Mac versus PC’s.  Which do you have?  Or, when you get ready to buy a new computer, which would you buy and what are your reasons?

I’d appreciate any opinions or experiences any of you can share with me.

A Boatload of Good Advice

August 30, 2010

Noah’s Ark

Everything I need to know, I learned from Noah’s Ark.
ONE: Don’t miss the boat.

TWO: Remember that we are all in the same boat!

THREE: Plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the Ark.

FOUR: Stay fit. When you’re 60 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.

FIVE: Don’t listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.

SIX: Build your future on high ground.

SEVEN: For safety’s sake, travel in pairs.

EIGHT: Speed isn’t always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.

NINE: When you’re stressed, float awhile.

TEN: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.

ELEVEN: No matter the storm, when you are with God, there’s always a rainbow waiting.

A sweet sight!

August 29, 2010

When we were coming out of a restaurant not too long ago the porch where there are many rockers for sale was empty, except for one man.

It struck me how seldom I have seen a man feeding a tiny baby in public … and I was charmed by the sight.

I just asked the man if I could take a picture, nothing else, so I don’t know if he was the father or grandfather.  But either way, he was sending a great message to everyone who saw him … a manly man can be nurturing too.

God bless men who demonstrate that message … not just to their families but in public too.

A diet for dogs that works!

August 27, 2010

Our beloved Akela died almost three years ago.  If you’d like to know a little more about her “talents” and maybe just a few tiny flaws, here is a post I did then.

And, if you happen to have a dog that needs to lose weight, you might want to try the diet I told about in that post:

About 6 years ago, the Vet told us that Akela Jane needed to lose a little weight (actually about 10 lbs.).  (It runs in the family!)  So, a friend told me the trick of replacing a cup of a dog’s dry dog food with canned green beans, to cut down on their calories.  We did it and it worked!  The Vet was amazed.  And, after she had lost the weight we continued to replace a half cup of her food with beans, because she liked them so much.  She thought they were a treat!  Go figure.

If you try this diet for your dog, I hope it works as well for you as it did for us.

By the way, if you happen to have recently lost a pet and are grieving for them, take heart.  We loved and adored Akela like no other pet we had ever had.  But there does come a time, as it is now for us, when the pain of loss fades and you are just left with wonderful memories.

Mama Remembered: Uncle Gene’s Glass Eye

August 26, 2010

When I look at this picture of my uncle and great-grandma several things cross my mind.  Was this before you were “required” to smile for a picture?  What a couple of “sad sacks”.  I didn’t know Uncle Gene when he was young so I’m a little surprised that even looking so somber, he was a fairly attractive young man.  I do remember him smoking a pipe when I knew him as an old man, so since he’s holding a pipe in this picture of him at 23, I assume he must have been a life-long pipe smoker.  I had totally forgotten that he had a glass eye when I found this picture to put with another of Mama’s stories that I posted recently.  In Mama’s story that follows she says it was his right eye, but I think it’s hard to tell in this picture.

Anyway, here from Mama’s book I Remember, is her story of Uncle Gene’s glass eye:

When Gene was only six years old he and a playmate opened Dad’s truck and found a shotgun shell.  They took it out in the back yard and put it in a tin can and built a fire on top of it.  Then they ran behind the barn and waited for it to explode.  They waited a long time and when nothing happened they went back to the can to see why it didn’t explode.  Just as Gene leaaned over to look at it, it exploded.  It shattered his right eyeball.  They called Dad at work and then took Gene to the hospital where they had to remove the shattered eyeball.  They must not have kept him in the hospital because Dad talked about walking the floor with him all night.  The pain must have been terrible.

After Gene grew up, he wore a glass eye.  When we would visit him he would tell our kids he left his eye on the chest of drawers when he wasn’t there, to watch them.  They believed him.  He had several glass eyes and kept them in a little velvet case.

I remember Mama, Daddy and I visiting Uncle Gene and Aunt Peggy in Colorado Springs one time when I was about 11 years old.  They all went next door to play cards one evening and left me home alone.  And, true to Mama’s story, before they left, Uncle Gene told me his glass eye would keep an eye on me.  I was old enough to get the “joke” but I do remember being fascinated by his extra eye that resided in a special little box that looked kind of like a ring box on top of a chest.

By the way, I’ll make another little confession here.  While I was there alone I was looking at a collection of key rings in a bowl on a table and one of them was a little pipe just like Uncle Gene smoked.  Uncle Gene was the only person I had ever known who smoked a pipe so that little tiny pipe (I would guess about 3 inches long) was of particular fascination to me.  Annnnd I wondered “How would it taste to smoke a pipe?”  so “Miss Inquisitive” went to an ash tray, disassembled a cigarette butt, put the tobacco from the butt into the bowl of the little pipe, and then used matches laying on an end table to light the tobacco!  I don’t remember ever putting that little pipe to my lips because, the way I remember it, it immediately became realllly hot, and I ran to the sink to shake the hot tobacco out of it.  But before I could get that done, the varnish on the outside of the lit pipe (which, of course, had never been intended to be used) had bubbled up.  I finally got the tobacco out of it and assessed the damage in horror.  There was no doubt about it that what had been a pretty little polished pipe was now a mess.  I washed it and cleaned it up as well as I could but it was absolutely obvious that it had been “used”.  I was so embarrassed by what I had done, and I dreaded the return of the adults when I would have to confess my “crime”.  But the longer I thought about it, a little voice in my mind said, “If you tell them that it is really going to spoil this visit for everyone … Mama and Daddy will be mad at you and Uncle Gene and Aunt Peggy will be disappointed.  And, after all, there’s no benefit that can come from anyone knowing this.  You’ve certainly learned your lesson!”  So, I took the clean-as-possible, now cool little key chain pipe and put it in the bottom of the bowl of key chains, hidden under all the rest. And then I sat down to read the library book I had told the adults I would be reading during my time alone.

I never heard any more about that key chain.  Bless his heart, when Uncle Gene eventually found it he must have decided that I had surely learned my lesson and so he didn’t feel like he had to report me to Mama!  No wonder I always liked Uncle Gene.  (But I bet he did wish I had believed his extra eye was watching me, because then I might have just read my book, like a good little girl!)

Free Medical Advice in Aisle Ten!

August 25, 2010

When I was at the grocery store last week, I ran into Maryanne who attends our church and is a friendly, but mostly “Hi, how are you.”  acquaintance.  There are many times that “Hi, how are you.” would have been the extent of this encounter too, but I think this time I was meant to hear some things Maryanne had to say.

So for whatever reason, we stopped to chat.  And the conversation came around to the fact that she used to have a noticeable limp, but doesn’t now.  This was of particular interest to me because I have been having trouble with my knees for several years now (and I do limp sometimes, but so far usually just for a short time after having sat for an extended period of time — never as badly as I had seen Maryanne limp) and I wondered if her knees had been her problem too.  Yes, in fact that was her problem and as she described how her knees had acted (or not acted), they sounded like my current knee problems only worse — where they might be heading.  She said now that she feels so great and has no pain, she wishes she had addressed the problem sooner and saved herself needless years of discomfort.  She also said that these days a specialist can very quickly determine if you need knee surgery because they take x-rays while you are in the office, so can make a diagnosis right away.  She concluded by telling me that if and when I did see a specialist, she would suggest a certain doctor who her daughter, an RN, said she considers the best knee specialist in the area.

My knee problems have been in the back of my mind for quite a while.  But you know how that goes — when it’s you, you have trouble standing back and looking at the problem, any problem, objectively and determining how serious it really is.  So I was glad that Maryanne had shared so much info about her knee surgery and what symptoms had lead up to it.  Her experience confirmed to me that I actually did have a problem that was going to have to be fixed eventually.  So I filed the information she had given me away in the back of my mind … little knowing how soon I would be using it!

Last Friday, just a couple days after this conversation, I was playing golf and on my chip shot up onto (luckily) the last green, I turned my right knee wrong and was suddenly in excruciating pain!  I managed to finish and hobble to the car and then drive home.  And when I got home I did what I have talked about doing for at least a year, i.e., made an appointment with a “knee Doc” — and, predictably, I called the doctor who had been recommended to me just a few days earlier.

Realistically, if I hadn’t just run into Maryanne, I’m not sure I would have made that call so quickly.  After all, later, after I had put an ace bandage around the knee, it stopped hurting and frankly that made me wonder if this was really just a non-event and didn’t require further attention.  But, because of that conversation earlier in the week, I knew that my symptoms were in line with those of at least one person who had had knee replacement, and also because of that conversation, I even knew the name of a good doctor to see.  So since I had already made the appointment, I decided to go anyway just to see what the doctor would say about my knees.

Bottom line … I saw the doctor yesterday … x-rays were taken showing the dreaded bone-on-bone knees … and in the next few days, surgery will be set up for sometime in November for both knees.

Thanks so much for the very well-timed “medical advice” Maryanne.  You just never know when you might pick up something free but of great value at the grocery store along with your cereal and bananas!

Keeping the Boogey Man Away!

August 23, 2010

When I was a little kid if I was afraid after I had been put to bed of what might be lurking in my dark bedroom, under the bed or in the closet … the unknown bad thing that we generically called “the boogey man” … Mama would come back in and reassure me and then sometimes leave the light on “to keep the boogey man away”.  I don’t know if it was Mama’s calm, loving reassurances or the light that was left on, but I was usually able to go to sleep after that.

Fast forward lo these many years and I’ve just noticed another possible instance of the light keeping the boogey man away.

There was a during-the-night break-in at our neighbor’s two doors down last week.  The thief/thieves didn’t get alot … they mainly ransacked the cars in the garage and went into the kitchen and took the wife’s purse.  We are so thankful that our neighbors were asleep and didn’t know anything was wrong until they got up the next morning … a face-to-face confrontation with intruders is always dangerous.

Needless to say, this incident is a real wake-up call for all of us in our up-until-now very safe-feeling neighborhood.  Especially since it’s believed that entrance was gained by using an electronic device that opens garage doors.

But when I went out to get the paper this morning, I happened to glance toward the neighbor’s house that was broken into and what I noticed was the difference in illumination between them and that of the house between us and our house.  Both our next door neighbor and we have lots of lights on the outside of our houses, but this neighbor’s house is relatively dark in comparison.  Is that the reason they were targeted?  Obviously, that isn’t the total reason because there are many houses in our neighborhood which don’t have alot of outdoor lighting , but it may have been a contributing factor.

I have heard it said that burglars are usually pretty lazy people, and tend to “pick the low fruit”, i.e., look for the easiest place to break into.  So, any deterrent we create at our home just might be the reason that a burglar doesn’t see us as “easy” and moves on … besides outdoor lighting, a yappy dog, no big evergreens right against the house that provide hiding places, dead bolts on exterior doors, motion sensors on some outdoor lights so that the thief can’t tell if they have awakened someone who has just turned on a light, signs that show you have a security system, and even if they do get into the garage, a locked door into the house may keep them from going further.

This has made me re-think where I regularly drop my purse when I enter the house — in plain view on the desk in the kitchen — an easy thing to snatch when it’s in plain sight like that.  And it’s made me think we probably should start leaving lights on in our back yard also.  One of Hubby’s brothers just installed a light sensor on his yard light so that it is always on when it is dark.  A great idea, especially for when you are away from home.  Our outdoor lights are controlled by a timer that has to be set for when you want them to go on and off — a constant aggravation for Hubby because as the season’s change, he has to constantly be changing the “on” and “off” times.

Anyway, this recent incident in our neighborhood has reminded Hubby and me to not be complacent about our home’s security, and I would like it if hearing this story might make you take a second look at your security too.

And, one more thing.  Maybe we should all take a minute to say a quick prayer for the “boogey men” in this world.  What’s it like to support yourself by stealing from others?  I don’t think any little child ever says, “I want to be the boogey man when I grow up.”

It’s THAT Personal!

August 22, 2010

A pastor said something one time that makes my salvation feel very personal.  He said, “Christ would have died on the cross if you were the only one who was saved by His sacrifice.”

Because God’s mind is infinite, and can do anything, in any amount of time, Christ could have thought of each person who ever did or ever will live on Earth in the time He was on the cross, and maybe even said a prayer for each of us!  That’s kind of awesome to think about, isn’t it?  To think that He might have thought of you personally, by name, while He was making that sacrifice?

That is how personal I believe God wants our relationship to be with Him.

A surprise message!

August 21, 2010

After doing a book review of A Waist is a Terrible Thing to Mind a couple days ago, the author Karen Scalf Linamen commented and thanked me for my review.  What a nice surprise!

She also invited me to visit her blog, aptly titled Wit and Wellness.  I did just that and enjoyed reading wry little snippets of advice and insights from an author I have come to admire.

So, I’ve added Wit and Wellness to my Blog Roll and recommend it to you for a frequent dose of wit and wisdom from one who I’m coming to understand possesses alot of both of those!

My Little Secret about Dirty Laundry

August 20, 2010

When we were moving to this house, I was trying to think “outside the box” and tried to make processes and the location of things easier.  I was in a bath and bedding store one day and saw this cool divided laundry hamper that even had wheels!  It was love at first sight and I immediately bought it and brought it home to be our own.

Believe it or not, these are the only pictures I could find of that original hamper.  Wouldn’t you think I would have at least taken the top layer of dirty clothes off before I took a picture?  I tell you, we’re going to have to fire that laundress — she really lets that stuff get out of hand sometimes!  (There were three sections and, in theory, we sorted the clothes as we put them in.  But, obviously when it got this full, that sorting-as-we-went became an inexact science!)

As is obvious in the previous pictures, we sometimes “somewhat” overloaded that hamper and its frame just wasn’t built for heavy duty use, so its frail little rods and wheels gave out after a couple years and it needed to be replaced.  In stepped Hubby who said, “Don’t buy another one of those hampers with the flimsy frame, I’ll build a heavy duty frame for the linen dividers you already have!”  So he built this one.  It was much sturdier, but it was also much heavier to push to the other end of the house to the laundry room, and it squeaked and moaned to high heaven every time it made the trip.  It became a joke between us that you could forget about hearing anything like TV when it was passing through, and we nicknamed it the “glory wagon”.

But, just between you and me, even though I really appreciated Hubby building the “glory wagon”, I never really liked it.  So I did use it for a while, because I didn’t want him to feel all his work was wasted, but after a while I came up with another idea and he (gladly, I think, because he wasn’t crazy about how this one turned out either) liked it too.

So, this is what we use now.

These wonderful mesh hampers fit perfectly where the “combo” hampers resided but now I don’t have to take the whole set to the laundry room at the same time.  When one fills up, I just take it!

These hampers are so lightweight and the handles make them very easy to carry.  If I need to, I can easily carry all three to the laundry room.

So instead of having, as they say, a dirty little secret, I have now shared with you my secret about my dirty little laundry … except for the little part.  Wasn’t there supposed to be alot less laundry when it was just the two of us?

My laundry  baskets that I use to put clean laundry in are made out of this mesh and have the strap handles too.  What a great invention!