Starfish Story

My sister-in-law, Mary Lou, emailed me the Starfish Story. It is definitely food for thought, so I’m happy to post it here –

A young girl was walking along a beach upon which thousands of starfish had been washed up during a terrible storm. When she came to each starfish, she would pick it up, and throw it back into the ocean. People watched her with amusement.

She had been doing this for some time when a man approached her and said, “Little girl, why are you doing this? Look at this beach! You can’t save all these starfish. You can’t begin to make a difference!”

The girl seemed crushed, suddenly deflated. But after a few moments, she bent down, picked up another starfish, and hurled it as far as she could into the ocean. Then she looked up at the man and replied, “Well, I made a difference to that one!”

The old man looked at the girl inquisitively and thought about what she had done and said. Inspired, he joined the little girl in throwing starfish back into the sea. Soon others joined, and all the starfish were saved.

— Adapted from The Star Thrower
by Loren C. Eiseley


Filed under Attitude, Encouragement, Food for Thought, making a difference

I Love Fall

“Autumn Sonnet” – Paul Militaru Photography

“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.” ~ Stanley Horowitz


“Leaves Dried Between Lights and Shadows” – Paul Militaru Photography

“The leaves fall, the wind blows, and the farm country slowly changes from the summer cottons into its winter wools.” ~ Henry Beston


“November” – Paul Militaru Photography

“No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds – November!” – Thomas Hood


“Red and Rusty” – Paul Militaru Photography

“Fiery colors begin their yearly conquest of the hills, propelled by the autumn winds. Fall is the artist.” ~ Takayuki Ikkaku


“Red Branches” – Paul Militaru Photography

“A woodland in full color is awesome as a forest fire, in magnitude at least, but a single tree is like a dancing tongue of flame to warm the heart.” ~ Hal Borland


“Red Leaves 1” – Paul Militaru Photography

“Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower” ~ Albert Camus


“Rusty Leaves” – Paul Militaru Photography

“For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together. For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad.” ~Edwin Way Teale


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Filed under Favorite Quotes, Mother Nature, Paul Militaru Photography, Seasons

Before and After – 11/12/2018 Project






As usual, I found a bunch of things I didn’t know I had. I threw out a bunch of stuff, relocated other things, then cleaned up the rest. I also cleaned out the basket above and to the right of this that holds the cleaners I use on a daily basis.

I found a mystery ‘thingie’ that neither my husband nor I had a clue what it was, so I pitched it. I had bought supplies I didn’t need because things were such a mess. I now have a bin in the pantry that holds replenishment for the things we use most often.

Now I’m going to go put my feet up for a while – drinking coffee, reading more of my current book, and patting myself on the head before I dig in again on processing our DVD collection.

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When Wood Comes Alive – Take 29

Sculptures by Kim Jotuni

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Playing with your Food – Take 30  (for a baby shower)



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“First Lesson”

“First Lesson” – Graham Colthorpe – LinkedIn

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Project for Today – 11/12/2018

World Arts Me


I’m in the middle of “PHASE 2” of going through our house with a fresh eye, trying to purge, donate, give away, clean, and reorganize things room by room, one cabinet or drawer at a time so as not to be completely overwhelmed.

I made it through PHASE 1 – and we have made lots of donations to the Disabled Vets Thrift Store and to our local library to use for fundraising. Our house is better for it – better than it’s been in years. I’ve made a pact with myself that I will do this at least once every 30 years or so…. :0)

Today’s project is the double cabinet under the sink in the kitchen. I have stashed as much as I can in there now, and it’s to the point where I can’t get anything out without several other things coming with whatever I’m looking for.


As you can see, it’s been time for a clean-out for quite a while. Last time I did this, I added the two storage bins to help a bit, but they are overflowing.

I have everything out of the cabinet now. My husband awoke from a nap in his chair, going into the kitchen to heat water for some hot apple cider. He asked, “What’s happening?” seeing all the ‘stuff’ on the kitchen counters. I assured him that it would all be ‘healed’ sometime during the day….

I’ll try to post a pic later, and hopefully, you’ll be able to see a difference.


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Filed under Challenges, Changes, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob, Organizing/DeCluttering

Roy Beck’s Explanation of Immigration – Interesting

Immigration, World Poverty and Gumballs –


“Immigration – Global humanitarian reasons for current U.S. immigration are tested in this updated version of immigration author and journalist Roy Beck’s colorful presentation of data from the World Bank and U.S. Census Bureau. The 1996 version of this immigration gumballs presentation.”

My friend, Marsha, sent this to me. I thought this was a very clear, effective, short presentation that made me look at things in a different way. I hope you find it worth your time.

If the link above doesn’t work for you, here is the url to paste into your browser –

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“The History of Glue”

Kathleen L. Hawkins, – Tim Vine via SlideShare

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Lion Love

Jeff Jett – LinkedIn



Jeff Jett – LinkedIn



Jeff Jett – LinkedIn

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“Warm Autumn Colors”

“Warm Autumn Colors” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“The Thrill of It All”

Rachealgrace Adams – “The Thrill of it All” – LinkedIn

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Joe Ganech Art

Pont Alexandre III, Paris – Joe Ganech – Artgalleys – – via Graham Colthorpe

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What Makes a Relationship Successful? via


Filed under Attitude, Challenges, Encouragement, Family

“I’m Flying!”

Mehmet Tayfun Dur – LinkedIn

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Making “Lemonade…”

I’m sad that all our flowers and most everything else died overnight due to the cold snap and sudden hard freeze.

Deciding to try to ‘make lemonade’ from the carnage, I just finished cleaning out the tomato plants in the two brick planters close to the house that we converted into ‘square foot garden’ planters, taking out all the soil and replacing it with Mel’s Mix. (combo of peat moss, vermiculite, and three kinds of compost: mushroom, barnyard, and cotton seed).

As you can see, we had several tomatoes that hadn’t had a chance to ripen.

I’m going to wrap them in newspaper and put them in the pantry, hoping that they might still ripen.  I was successful with this one year, and a dismal failure another year, but I love to try. :0)

The sun is shining brightly, but it’s cold out there, with a good breeze, so I’m doing short sessions outside and then coming in to warm up in-between. I don’t know how much I can get cleaned out today, but hopefully I can get two or three sessions in.

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“Bess” – Niki Firmin – Pet Portraits

“Bess” – Niki Firmin – Pet Portrait Artist LinkedIn

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“A Happy Lady”

“A Happy Lady” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Cold Snap :0(

It’s a good thing that I took pics of the remaining flowers and shared them with you because we had a cold snap last night and all is gone now. These were the black elephant ear and impatiens.


Not sure yet about the roses. We may have Indian Summer here and may still get some blooms, but the impatiens are definitely gone.


The tomato plants are also gone.


I lucked out, mostly, in the greenhouse. I lost all the tomato sucker plants, but the lettuce and celery plants are still with us. My husband agreed that we could bring whatever was still alive in the greenhouse inside. I set up a card table in the dining area and used the wheelbarrow to bring all the plants in. I cleaned up the greenhouse and it will be quiet out there until I start thinking about starting seeds and plants out there to hopefully get a jump on my spring square foot garden.

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Filed under Gardening, greenhouse, Mother Nature, Starting - Growing in a Greenhouse


Yesterday I received my new month’s worth of Nutrisystem AND my 30-pounds-off-bear-reward!

I’ve already admitted to you that I’m immature and respond really well to childish forms of pats-on-the-head, and it’s really the truth. I give myself a gold star on my desk calendar each day when I do either my yoga and exercises or my elliptical trainer. I look at my sweet lineup of bears and smile, feeling a definite pat on the head for my lardage loss thus far. It also motivates me to go for the next one!

My husband and I decided that we would split the cash-back reward on our credit card. He immediately ordered a pistol he’s been drooling over for a LONG time. I told him that I would spend my share slowly, indulging in some new clothes – one size down from what I’m currently wearing – as further motivation to continue losing the lard.

Since one of the parts of me that won’t change is my FEET, I ordered some really colorful “happy” shoes from China from a place called, “Yes, We Vibe.”





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Filed under DIET!, exercise, getting the lard off, Healthy Eating, motivators, quality of life, taking care of yourself

Lofoten Islands, Norway

Iahsen Haddou – Lofoten Islands Norway – LinkedIn

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“Bronze Dragonfly”

Gerrit van Emous – Bronze Dragonfly

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Brief Window!

Great Performers Academy

I seem to have a brief window where I can actually communicate a bit!

I hope all of you are doing well. We’re doing fine, except for me tearing my hair out that I can’t do my normal stuff on my computer. I have to admit I’m getting more cleaning done, since I can’t access the Internet most of the time.

My husband ordered a card that we HOPE will solve my problem. Otherwise, you may be able to hear me complaining from here!


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Only have flashes of intermittent Internet. Part coming that we HOPE will fix me tomorrow. Until then, I’m having withdrawal about not being able to write on my blog. Hope everyone is well.


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Getting the Lard Off Progress Report – 11/8/2018

Pets World

The short answer is 30.6 pounds down, and 28.3 inches off.

The longer answer is that we are feeling more ‘at home’ with our new eating style. My husband and I are both on Nutrisystem, but they encourage flex meals – meals where you cook, or eat out, or branch out in some way from the Nutrisystem meals – one breakfast, one lunch, one dinner, and one snack per week.

We are actually doing more flex meals than that -opting for a heartier dinner salad some nights, or similar things. An example, even though we’re only supposed to eat one flex dinner per week, we had a cold snap and the idea of homemade beef stew with some bread sounded really good. We ended up eating this combo for three nights straight, and then my husband was sad we didn’t have more :0)  The best news was that we not only kept our weight, but actually lost some.  So, we’re feeling more in control of our eating, our program, our goals.

We’re both exercising now. My husband spent four years in the Marine Corps, doing 50 sit-ups at the drop of a hat, or at a superior’s whim, with ease. Then, 55 years past. He tried to do a sit up about 6 weeks ago, while I was visiting a much beloved relative in Thibodaux, and was shocked that he couldn’t do ANY. (I was also amazed that he actually told me about his trial and shock, but told him that I was proud of him for trying, and that I knew if he kept at it, he would get stronger.)  He now is doing 5 strongly, and 2 or 3 more with great effort. I can’t tell you how pleased I am that he’s giving it his best shot every day. The doc told him to do cardio, but I’m not pushing it yet.

I have a stupid motivator in my own efforts to exercise daily – gold stars – like we used to get a million years ago for good work in school. My attitude is, “It it works, RUN IT!” I feel a bit silly, but it really works for me. I’m trying to do 35 minutes on my elliptical trainer one day, and about half an hour of yoga stretches and regular exercises the next. Yesterday was really busy, and it was late afternoon before I knew it. I thought, “oh, well, I’ll just do the elliptical tomorrow. One day won’t hurt.”  Then, as I sat there, I thought about not getting my gold star for the day. At 6:00 in the evening, I got up, went out to the garage, and put in my time. :0)

My husband often ‘isn’t hungry.” I NEVER have that problem. I have an appetite that would kill a horse. I get HUNGRY and if I don’t eat something, I get SNIPPY, CRANKY, and “MEAN AS A SNAKE,” according to my husband. The other silly motivator is the Nutrisystem bears you can get for each 10 pounds you lose. (My 30 pound bear is on its way!) I line them up on a shelf beside my computer chair in the office. When I’m tempted to go in and stuff my face at the wrong time, I think about getting the next bear…

Halfway to my goal now on lardage!


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Filed under Challenges, Changes, DIET!, exercise, getting the lard off, Healthy Eating, opportunities, quality of life, taking care of yourself

Saverio Scoleri Art

Saverio Scoleri – LinkedIn

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Takes Your Breath Away

Sonja A – LinkedIn

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When Wood Comes Alive – Take 28

Tikhonovsskiy Yuriy – via

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“The Curve of the Lake”

“The Curve of the Lake” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Cherishing Blooms


Our weather forecast is for cold waves and lower temperatures, some down near, or to, freezing starting Friday, so I went around the yard taking pics of what will probably be our last blooms of the season. I’m sad because the rose buds I took pics of yesterday may not have time to bloom.


I love impatiens, and they really seem to like it on the north side of our house. I’m especially pleased that they like sun, too, so we can plant them in several places around the yard.



My friend, Kay, gave me this black elephant ear plant for my birthday this year. I just love it, and it seems to like it beside the front door. It’s also a bit protected from the wind we get up here on top of our ridge line.



I made my husband come outside to see his clematis. He thought they were finished for the year several weeks ago. He was really happy to see this!


A last bloom on a second clematis plant.



Wave petunias


And more wave petunias. By Friday or so, all of these will probably be gone. We sure enjoyed the nice display.

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Filed under Favorite Things, Gardening, Mother Nature

Sand/Water Blasting and Bulldozing…

Sun Sentinel

Actually, although I DO sandblasting on glassware and tools in the shop, and water blasting on the deck, concrete, and more, I am using the kitchen sink and cleaners for today’s project of scrubbing out all our trash containers, putting in trashcan liners (as I SHOULD have long ago) and putting things back together.

I’m getting several messages from this project –

  • I’m spending much of the day doing something I COULD have avoided if I had put trashcan liners in all the containers when they were clean, umpteen years ago
  • Scrubbing out trash cans is a LOT of work
  • Putting the clean trash cans with fresh liners back gives me good exercise – particularly the ones that belong upstairs
  • We have a LOT of trash cans! Since I’m scrubbing them all, I’m counting – and we have 21 trash cans inside this house!

I have SIX remaining to scrub, line, and put back.

If I still have energy, I’m planning to clean out the double cabinet area under the kitchen sink. (Can you imagine – things tend to fall out of there whenever I try to get something!)  :0(

With these two projects for the day and my 35 minutes on my elliptical trainer, I can feel good about my activity level today.

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Filed under exercise, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob, Lewis projects