Back in time

April 4th. My daughter made her debut on Earth. A tribute will follow soon.  Her birthstone is the diamond and I chose this year to give her my diamond earrings.  It’s a win/win.  Continue reading



What happens when I don’t post an entry for over a week?  I have so much to write I don’t know where to begin.  Over that amount of time I hear things that make me mad, things that make me laugh or make me think of things that, if not written down, are gone.  As a matter of fact, I do write notes.  Where did I put them?  So I ramble.  Chronological order is out the window.

Friday after work I went to the Feast of Tabernacles celebration put on by my Messianic congregation friends. By the time I got off work and found them at the retreat’s A-frame log lodge, the leftovers were just under warm but still tasty.  The feast started last Wednesday and will end this Wednesday.  Hopefully, I will get back there for the last day.  It’s an 8 day week, and in the opinion of many Jewish/Christian researchers, the actual birth week of Jesus aka Yeshua.

I have completed one week of 5 workouts and started the second week this morning.  Honey has instructions to pull me out of bed at 6am.  So far, none of the bruises show or impair movement.

A local news item from the town just 10 miles east of us was the report of a 4 month old baby at Noah’s Ark daycare who was found whimpering on the bathroom floor, packing tape over his mouth holding his pacifyer in place.  It occured to me that had he been a dog, the outrage and fallout would be deafening.  But since he’s only a human……….

In the national news, another husband has come home to find his children drowned in the family bath tub. Andrea Yates and this poor overstressed mommy have one thing in common — bad timing.  I predict a new phrase in the ongoing slaughter of our babies.  Since the Roe v. Wade decision, the process has progressed from First Term (tissue) to Mid Term (inviability) to Anytime Before Labor (my doctor told me I could wave away my son anytime I wanted, the jerk) all the way to Partial Birth, a brutal excrutiating death in the name of convenience.  Choice.  Custodial privilege.  The next phrase is Post-birth Abortion.  A time frame will be given to determine if a child’s future appears to afford him a desirable quality of life.  If not, we’ll issue a FedEx call tag ……….. Planned Parenthood will have to add on rooms.  Buy stock in Home Depot now while you have the chance.

If I offended you, it’s because certain compromises slipped into our society have slid the body parts of over 35 million unborn children down the proverbial slippery slope literally into the sewers; compromises that have become outrageously offensive to my very soul and spirit.  I don’t apologize.  Neither do I blow up clinics.  Nor do I refuse to forgive anyone who was sucked into the psyche of choice-at-any-cost if she wants forgiveness.  Again, if it were 35 million dogs ……………

(deep breath).  The summer heat is finally history.  We are enjoying this week’s daytime highs in the low 80’s and overnights in cool 60’s.  (But then, the 60’s defined cool).  The fall colors might not happen.  So far, already in October, we are still green.  However, our trees appear to be drying rather than turning.  Not enough rain in August, I’m told.  The good news is that the windows are open, the fans are on and the AC is not devouring electricity.

One more random thought.  Today marks the first day of a statewide ban prohibiting smoking in public places.  In Tennessee, of all places on the plannit, to ban smokin’!! Our local talk show host, Phil Williams, spent the better part of his 3 hours taking calls from people, smokers and non-smokers alike, who did not rejoice over the fresh air without tobacco, but instead complained about the government’s intervention in our private lives.  There just hasn’t been enough proof in enough numbers to declare as an absolute truth that random second hand smoke kills nearly as many people as smokers.  It’s even been stated that it takes 10 times as much time exposure to second hand smoke to cause the same health problem as in the smoker.  But intervene they did.  What next?  If a smoker is outside on his own porch and the smoke drifts to the windows of the neighbors, does Big Brother step in?  “Everybody” smoked when I was a kid.  Make the adjustment.  One caller pointed out something I hadn’t heard before:  When was the last time every non-smoker in a restaurant bent over their plates choking? I wonder if we’ll see an increase in chew’n’ too-bakkie.

On a giggle note, praise team was free-fun Sunday morning.  No more music stands!  And the choir special was fun too, all because of the new screen on the back wall.  No more books, no more director’s dirty looks.  Ok, that was soley for the sake of rhyme.  She doesn’t do that.  An eyeroll or two maybe, but that’s it… and she smiles at the same time.  One of these days, I’m going to show up in a robe. 

Well, wasn’t that all over the place?  That’s what happens after 8 or 9 days of silence. I’ll report in sooner … soon.  Choir’s tomorrow, going to Sukkot Wednesday …. Thursday? See ya Thursday.

Little peeves and boredom

When I was in school, there were typewriters.  When I took Typing I in high school, there were two rows of nail ripping manual typewriters and one brand new IBM Selectric with the miraculous interchangeable bouncing brass ball eliminating the need for a movable carriage.  It was great fun to watch those trained on the manual to constantly slap the left side of the IBM and the IBM trained students to typeover that last letter making a black hole in the paper until he realized he didn’t hit the carriage return.  The instructor sounded a lot like my piano teacher in regard to my nails.  Cut them.  Period.  Anybody remember carbon paper?  Some things about the good old days were not good by anyone’s definition.

Few people owned a typewriter at home.  Huh? They did?  Well, the Murphys didn’t.

In Typing I adn Typing II classs, error fre speed was teh gol.  Of cours during any tests or dayly wok and error was a error was error, circled adn Caculated euqally against a perfict scor.

In all other classes, any work handed in whether daily, tests, essays, whatever, errors in grammar and spelling as well as penmanship, margins, ink blotches (must be ink, no pencil), cross-outs, and overall poor appearance were considered errors and reduced the overall grade in some way.  Content and comprehension were only part of the grade.  No typing.  You were given your paper back and received an incomplete for typing — unacceptable.  The room for Typing I and II was for teaching typing not for use for other classes’ papers even if the room was empty.  Period.  It’s as if the staff conspired in the smoke filled break room to beat those lessons in communicating properly in the King’s English into our little mush filled heads whether the paper was in biology, math, or social studies.

As it is in any situation in which one is working for approval — the students’ perspective of education — one fails from time to time to understand why these people are being so flippin’ (there’s a g on the end of that, young lady!) picky!!  Grade my english in English class and leave it alone in Biology!  Sorry.

Maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea after all if indeed learning is by repetition.  The spoken word hides many errors which are glaring on the page.  People whose educations included not just phonics in the elementary grades, but relentless grammar and spelling correction throughout all 12 grade levels are sharply aware of the consistent misuse by various multiply degreed people such as those know-it-all-I’m-too-good-to-talk-to-you engineers upstairs at HTI and doctors, from whom we expect more.  To make excuses on the basis of one’s main function vs. the trivia of details misses the point.  As for HR people reading an application, they want to be able to not only read it but in most cases, to see that the applicant can spell and formulate a coherent thought on paper.  Let me share some common examples made by the aforementioned professionals whose Lotus Notes I regularly corrected, not only spelling but language comprehension that should have been ingrained prior to post high school education.

There, their, they’re/ its or it’s / your and you’re / crisis vs. crises / to, too, two / hear, here / bare, bear / be, bee/  raise, raze / who’s, whose /and the list can go longer.  You get my point.  They’re not typos all the time and spellcheck does not catch them.

Another that I hear from the media, including anchors who are reading what they or some other professional has written and should have had proofed before the broadcast is the confusion with pronouns — he and I versus him and me.  I was taught a simple trick.  How do I contact newspaper editors, scriptwriters and otherwise self proclaimed and highly paid communicators on international satellite with this easy solution?

Pop out one of the pronouns and restate.  Example:

He and I went for a ride.  (correct)  "Him and I" sounds silly when you pop out the I and say: Him went for a ride.  Sam went for a ride with he and I.  (popular amongst the media but incorrect)  Pop out one of the pronouns and say it this way:  Sam went for a ride with I.  Sam went for a ride with he.  Instead say Sam went for a ride with him or with me.  "Him and me" is correct.  A more natural expression is that Sam went for a ride with "us" unless using "him" clarifies which him I’m talking about.  In that case, using his proper name is smoother and eliminates a natural need to point. 

Somehow the use of  "he" or "I" sounds more proper and sophisticated.  "I" is correct on the end of a sentence instead of "me" only when a verb would follow it if the sentence were extended.  Example:  "She plays piano better than I (do)" is correct.  "She plays piano better than me" is incorrect.  If you extend it with the implied verb you end up with "me do" or "me does."  Pretty simple.

One other misuse is of the word "only."  The word applies to whatever it’s in closest proximity with.  Oops, I just ended a sentence with a preposition.  I never liked the clunky alternative.  Neither did Winston Churchill.  So maybe that one is a sign of progress since my handy-dandy dictionary declares it an acceptable natural order.  (Whew)

Did we have fun?  Okay, okay, it’s raining, the Buick is making a funny sound and is grounded so I can’t run around and cold call with resumes on $2.59 for a gallon of gas and I am bored.  I don’t lack for things to do.  I have to make a few trade decisions with my Scottrade account, organize papers and notes, and start another blanket.  I have an interview tomorrow and hopefully at least a test with another company which already has my application and is holding a job fair.

Last week was mostly dull, depressing, and stressful.  I chose this banality rather than vent on new developments in the media sabatoge of the war on terror causing even more stress.  I most certainly do not have a right to know the war department’s every move.  Just get the buggars, I have enough to worry about.

SO! …. have a great few days.  I’ll let y’all know more job search news when I know more unless something just has to be said.

Abandoned for the weekend

Once in a while, Honey goes out of town to a trade show.  I get the queen bed all to myself.  He isn’t pleased that I tell him it will take a good 36 hours to miss him.  He knows I’m teasing.  That lower lip is just for effect.

We’ve been married 33 years this May, longer than we were single by almost 50%.  Time away from each other is therapeutic when you live and work together.  But I will miss him.

So he asked me what I plan to do with all that alone time.  Finish up Anna’s blanket, start Jody’s blanket, clean out a closet maybe (snort. like that’s gonna happen), return the Christmas gifts that didn’t work–I promise I won’t shop, or move some brush out of the woods, or…blog.

Yes, I have a new passtime.  I needed something to wean me off of Spider Solitaire.  I’ve been exploring, adding new friends in the blog-sphere.  What I really need to do is organize the tax stuff and investigate Turbo Tax.  Or I could balance the checkbook.  Or……. clean.  Or………

I’ll let the spirit move me.  A new friend, that is, one who assumes I will be lost without Honey for 4 days, wanted to know if I needed to go to dinner with her and her Honey, if I would be ok.  Ok? Does she mean, like, would I be rolled in a fetal position with my thumb in my mouth?  Not since 1976 to the best of my recollection.

One event is locked in.  I am going to see Madam Butterfly with Donna on Sunday afternoon.  Greta gave me some pretty clothes.  So now I may have something in the stack to wear.  This is the second opera I have ever gone to.  See?  Do you see that I need some refinement?  I end my sentences in prepositions for crying out loud!  Donna has her work cut out for her.

Tag, I’m apparently It

Is there a pop quiz tomorrow?

4 jobs you have had in your

1. Human Resource Manager, Dept.of One
2. Accounts Receivable clerk
3. Third shift trainer, most fun allowed on a paying job
4. Bookkeeper at the family furniture store

4 Movies You Could Watch
  Over and Over

1. The Quiet Man, John Wayne and Maureen O’hara.  Go get it.  Now. Watch.
2. The Music Man, timeless music that follows me for weeks at a time (Madam Librarrrrrrrrrrr…………ian)
3. Young Frankenstein, trying to set a viewing record
4. The Last of the Mohicans, Daniel Day Lewis is such a hu…… great actor.

4 Places You Have Lived

  1. East Tennessee
  2. Litchfield, MN
  3. Minneapolis-St.Paul area, at least 5 addresses
  4. Cameron, Illinois

4 TV Shows You Love To Watch

1. CSI
2. Monk
3. Fox News Channel
4. 24, just getting into it

4 Places You Have Been On Vacation

1. The Soo (if you have to ask, you haven’t been there)
2. San Francisco
3. wherever my kids are
4. Mackinac Island

4 Websites You Visit Daily

1. Jules’
2. FOX News
3. WND
4. Rush Limbaugh

4 Of Your Favorite Foods

1. Steak, ok, beef in general
2. Potatoes, I’m Irish
3. Cheesecake
4. Most veggies, cooked and/or raw

4 Places You Would Rather Be Right Now

1. Playing with Drew
2. Seattle
3. Rochester
4. Globe hopping with my family like some super rich person

4 people I’d like to see answer this
I think I’m the end of the blog line.

The Swirl of Snow

No, we’re not going to be buried in snow.  People have their noses pressed against windows in six counties wishing with all their might for The Big One.  Goin’ home now, snow’s a-comin’!  The announcer on 100.3 this morning called it a Car Hood snowfall.  Nothing accumulating anywhere but on car hoods, grass tips, maybe a dusting on the porch roof.  But the prediction of snowfall, even the possibility of small amounts in the "higher elevations" has the airwaves all abuzz.  Schools shut down before the clouds move in and don’t re-open until the last dirty little grey ice smear disappears from the last remote back road.  And outsiders wonder why Tennessee schools are a blazing 48th in edjukashun.  Where I grew up schools were open to whomever could get there.  That was west central Illinois and we got all the winter weather.

Would it not be more reasonable for southern states to run the school year March through November?  Somebody told me there’s a district nearby that runs year round with several 2 week breaks.  They love it.

It didn’t take a month after we moved here to hear the snow legends.   My parents talked about Bank Runs when the Great Depression hit in ’29.  Here we have Food Runs.  Sometimes I think the forecasters purposely shout SNOW and send out the camera crews to catch people dashing and buggies bashing, plowing their way through the aisles to stock up on bread and milk.  The radio talk show host asked the announcer about the bread and milk thing this morning.  He said it’s really bread, milk, cigarettes, and toilet paper — a Snow Casserole.  The toilet paper is the pan liner.

We were told of power outages that lasted for days.  I come home on a sunny summer day and find all the clocks flashing.   Did it snow?

Watch out for the trees!  Trees?  We have mostly pines which are notorious for having a shallow root system.  So when it rains too many days in a row followed by any kind of wind and snow, they can literally detach and slide down slopes many of which are located adjacent to roadways, very adjacent to roadways.  We don’t have ditches or shoulders on a large number of roads here.  Some of them don’t have yellow lines down the center because if they did, there wouldn’t be room for two vehicles.

And that brings me back to why schools close at the threat of snow.  I’ve seen too many curly, hilly, narrow back roads.  I wouldn’t want a child of mine in a school bus with no seat belts tipping and sliding down an embankment.

Anyway, we’re waiting for snow but there’s no celebration, no gleeful rubbing of the hands.  Like, who wants to be snowbound on a Saturday, for cryin’ out loud?

Medical Insurance for computers

That sounds like a great idea!  Office visit copays for support calls, transplant deductible and coinsurance for new motherboards or power supplies, copays for diagnostic services such as virus scans, and a wellness program for preventive maintenance like upgrades and additional memory.  I need to investigate this.  I think I could make a bundle.  Remember, you read it here first.

My plans after I get the Christmas decorations up are to dig out all the Christmas photos I can find and post the best ones with the best stories on a daily or as available basis.  Those plans were dashed last night when, after our friend Darrell discovered why certain processes were slower than the first pong game from the ’70’s, I tried to log onto the internet and saw an error message telling me my internet connection software was corrupted.  ARRGH!!  It was working yesterday!!  The computer is now upstairs in the IT department as I type.  I’m dreading the verdict of …… virus, a five letter word that strikes panic in the heart of every computer owner who hasn’t backed up onto stacks of discs weekly.

So, tune in again for another exciting adventure in the continuing saga of Why Won’t This Stupid Thing Work.  See Jane cry.  See Jane with sledge hammer in hand "hit any key."  See Stan roll his eyes. Again.