Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Art of Senyphine

The Art of Senyphine
Click here to see more!! 

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Myth of the Poop Fairy

Like the Loch Ness Monster or Bigfoot, the fabled Poop Fairy has been the stuff of legend. Flying undetected in parks, neighborhoods and schoolyards, she was said to follow close behind dogs and their owners — picking up what the dog left behind, before flying off to the next canine creation. A widespread belief that she existed seemed to reassure some that cleaning up after one’s dog was sort of … optional. 
However, in response to a growing number of poop piles, and a growing number of citizen complaints, the Jefferson County (Colorado) Animal Control office has partnered with local park districts and homeowner associations to bring you this public service announcement:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Touch of Humanity

 * * * I'll warn you now, this post is a bit wordy * * *

I hadn't planned a post for today. But something happened last night that really touched me and softened the hard core that had begun to form inside. I wanted to share this something with you.

Let me begin ........   I am a member of an online discussion forum for the town in which I live. It can be a lively place with discussions ranging from sun spots to wild hogs to politics. It's a great place to keep up on what's happening in the county, advertise items for sale, place a notice for a lost dog, or share recipes. I'm not necessarily a frequent contributor but will sometimes join discussions when I feel the need. And with the impending move, I have listed many items for sale.

One of these items was a 1950s style dining table set with matching hutch. I had tried to sell it for months and finally a lovely Lady called me to purchase it. This woman and her husband live in Galveston, Texas but had recently purchased a local commercial building for a future venture. She had the table set moved to this building. I never thought I would hear from this woman again. This took place about two weeks ago.

Let's fast forward to yesterday morning. Someone had posted on the forum the news about how some employers who place ads on the many online employment websites, state in their ads that the unemployed need not apply. This seems to be the growing trend. And it is perfectly legal. This struck a nerve with me because of my Hubby's recent encounter with being unemployed. I wanted to see what thoughts people had on this subject. All too often the people who are on the forum will only see things one way, never stopping to look at all angles of a situation. In this case the thread was degenerating into a bashing of those people who had drawn unemployment for the full 99 weeks - or 99ers as they are called. My Hubby was a 99er and this 'name calling' did not set well with me.

I would like for you to read my post.....
I wasn't going to join this discussion, but feel I must before folks start bashing the 99ers
Firstly, not all 99ers are leeches of the Gov't. Yes, there are some that choose to stay on unemployment rather than get a job but NOT ALL!

My husband was employed at the Mena airport and was laid off late in the year of 2008. He looked and looked for work around here. I looked for work. My skills were limited while his were not. Yet, neither of us could find a job. It was not financially possible for us to take a job in Ft. Smith or Hot Springs - it would cost us more in gas to commute than what either of us would make in wages. Believe me, neither of us WANTED to live off unemployment but yet that was our only option if we were to stay in the area.

So Hubby went to school to learn a new skill while continuing to draw unemployment. He felt that by doing this he would better his chances of getting a job, thus supporting his family and not being a "Leech" on The System. Sorry to say the education he received only enabled him to qualify for minimum wage jobs - he had neither the education nor the experience required for many of the better paying jobs in his new chosen field. So Hubby went back to applying for positions in fields where he had worked previously - auto body tech and motorcycle mechanic. He could make 3x to 4x the amount of money doing manual labor vs. a job that he had received an education for.

Hubby submitted resumes and applications - an average of 3 a day (for a period of 2 1/2 months) before he was finally hired. One place he went, a manager looked at his application and told him that they weren't accepting applications from the unemployed. Hubby told them he had been attending school. Hubby went to another place about 4 hrs after the job was posted on Craig's list. The manager already had a stack of at least a dozen applications and they were going to continue to take applications for two more days. The job market is extremely tough!!

I'm happy to say that Hubby started a new job just this past Monday. 

A member responded with an attempt to placate me on 'how well things turned out' but never once admitting that the 99ers weren't all lazy, slouches wanting to live off the Government. This was the same member who had begun the name calling. I know it is hard to admit to being wrong, but .....
This same member then went on to write about how lucky we were to have found work in the area and how 'easy' it is to receive public assistance (back to the lazy, slouches who live off the Gov't.)

My responses were.....
Actually Hubby didn't find work here. There are still not enough jobs to go around in this part of the country. Hubby found work in Denver. And that is where he had put in all of his applications for employment. We both knew that he wasn't going to get a good paying job around here, if he got a job at all. And the only "cost of living" that is higher there is rent and the cost of homes. Food, utilities, gas are all cheaper than here in Mena. I know this because I have three children who live in the Denver Metro area. I have compared utility bills (yes, down to the price per kilowatt or cost per gallon of water) and the cost of food. 
Maybe for some it is easy. But for others in need it is near impossible to receive any sort of assistance. When Hubby was on unemployment, we applied for food stamps. We didn't qualify because we owned our own home and our vehicles. According to the Gov't. we didn't qualify because we had too much in the way of assets. We felt like we were being punished...There were many times we borrowed from our kids to help make ends meet.
As far as I know, welfare checks are a thing of the past. My daughter who is pregnant and has three small children only qualifies for food stamps and WIC. (Due to a twist of events, my Son-in-law can no longer provide for his family) No monetary assistance from the Gov't. is available. If it wasn't for family, she and the kids would be living in a shelter.

There were only a few response after mine. And they all wrote about what a 'flawed' system the Gov't. has in determining who is eligible for public assistance. I figured that was the end of that. I was a bit disappointed that no members wished us well but I wasn't surprised. The people of this area have become quite self-centered and selfish.

And then I received an email notice that a forum member had sent me a personal message. It was from the Lady who had bought the table from me a couple weeks back. This email took me totally by surprise.....

Hi Jeanne; I read a little of what you and your husband have been going through. I think there are many people now who are standing in the shoes you've been in, many more so than I can remember at any other time in my life. I now know the reason you will be moving, and I'm glad that things turned out well for you, even though it's too bad it means you'll be leaving the Mena area. I would like to have met you. We'll be spending the first two weeks of Sept. in Mena, getting a little work done on the building, and also just enjoying the beautiful scenery. If you happen to be still living there then, and find yourself out and about, I hope you'll stop by and say hello. I warn you we'll be dressed in our work clothes! My best wishes to you and your family. 

I was brought to tears when I read her short note. There really are people out there in the world who care about others. I know the Blogging World is filled with caring, generous people but knowing that this one woman who didn't know me could reach out like she did  really softened the rock which had begun to form in my heart. Not one member of the community we live in - some who knew my Hubby quite well - had bothered to check to see how we were doing after he was laid off.

So, please, DO NOT hesitate to reach out to someone. Take a moment to send someone a letter or an email. Even if it's just to say, "Hey, I'm thinking about you".  Smile at more people - even if you don't feel like smiling.  Remember it's these little things that can brighten someone's day more than you'll ever know.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Impossible Gears

Mind Boggling.......

Monday, July 25, 2011

Cat Tales ~ Catnip Harvest

Me has a 'medical scrip' for Catnip and Mommy is my Catnip Provider.
These are just a few of the Catnip plants that Mommy grows. She has lots. 

Me likes to savor my catnip. First Me rubs it on my lips and cheeks. 

Then Me nibbles on the leaves. If Daddy's around, he will pick a leaf or two and rub it all over me. He knows I like my cologne to be Eau de Catnip.

This is part of the Catnip after harvest. 

Mommy puts it in this big round thing to dry it out. If she dries it, then Me always has Catnip available for Mes medical condition. This is a photo of Me inspecting the drying process.

Catnip is is good for frazzled nerves and upset tummys. Even Humans can take it! But Me don't understand why they don't roll around in it. They'd probably feel better if they'd just get down on the rug and roll back and forth in Catnip leaves!

Purz and Catnip Dreams ... Gomez

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sleeping House Studio

The Art of Alexander Jansson

Friday, July 22, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Legend of Bigfoot

I ran across this story while packing up some of our books. And I thought I would share it with you, my faithful readers. My Mother wrote this story while living in the Pacific Northwest prior to the eruption of Mt. St. Helens.

The Legend of Bigfoot 
Donna Turnbull

     Etherton waved goodbye to the guides who were to set up camp here and let him proceed alone.  This was Bigfoot Country, a few miles from Vancouver on the slopes of Mt. St. Helens in the Cascades.  Here the sightings of Bigfoot had been many.  Not every man had nerve enough to climb the slopes in search of one.    
     But Etherton was a brave man.     He was there to attempt the rescue of one Alina Smith.  She had disappeared less than a month ago after the filming of her last picture was completed.  She had come here for a vacation and to join a group who were viewing the splendor of the cone shaped mountain.  The rest of the party had returned.  Alina had not.  One of them had testified that he had seen her, at a distance, picked up and carried off screaming by an eight foot man-like creature - a Bigfoot.  A party had searched for her for several days to no avail.  Everyone agreed that she would not now be found alive.
     Everyone except Etherton.
     He struggled on through the deep snow of the mountain slope.  In addition to his heavy clothing and mountain climbing equipment, he carried a high-powered rifle.  Snow swirled around him as he neared the cloud line.  Suddenly he caught a glimpse of a large hairy creature with humanoid features.  He raised his gun and fired.  The figure fell - it had been on a ledge with hundreds of feet of nothingness below.
     At the moment of the shot, thick hairy arms had closed around Etherton from behind.  One huge hand took the rifle from his nerveless hands and bent it into a figure eight shape, then tossed it away.
A soft voice spoke from two feet above his head, "Be quiet, you will not be harmed".  A squeak was the only sound that Etherton made in reply.  He was being held so tightly that he could not look upward and backward to see what held him.
     "Let me explain," said the voice. "We, whom you call Bigfoot, are human, but transmuted.  A great many years ago we chanced to discover a drug that let us change physically.  Letting us adapt physically to survive on the snowy slopes of this mountain where others cannot survive.  We now live in other areas of the globe.  Do you understand?"
     Etherton, beginning to feel a return of hope of his survival, answered with a 'yes'.
     "I shall explain further.  Our numbers are small and we are lessening.  When necessary we occasionally capture a human who ventures on the mountain slopes.  We give the transmuting drug then the person undergoes a change and becomes one of us.  By that means we keep up our number".
     Etherton explained that he was looking for Alina, "Is she now eight feet tall and hairy?"
     "She was.  You just shot her.  One of our number had taken her for his mate.  Now you must take her place".
     "I, I am a man!"
     "No matter", said the voice above him.  He was turned around and his face was buried against huge hairy breasts.  "I am a Bigfoot Woman".  Etherton was picked up and carried away by his mate.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Lazarus Species

“They’re called “Lazarus species” — creatures that have disappeared, sometimes for millions of years, only to miraculously be rediscovered again in modern times. Just as Lazarus was raised from the dead by Jesus in the Gospel of John, so these species manage to survive.”

A Lazarus Species is a creature that has disappeared from fossil records and thought to be extinct. Only to be 'rediscovered' in fairly modern times, alive and well and breathing. A good example of a Lazarus Species is the Coelacanth - a fish that was thought to have become extinct 65 million years ago. Only to be 'rediscovered' in 1938.
 Lazarus Species are not to be confused with Living Fossils. Living Fossils are creatures that have survived for thousands, sometimes even millions of years unchanged. Their species can be traced back through the millennium through fossil records. The cockroach is a good example of a Living Fossil.
Why is there no record - fossil or otherwise - of Lazarus Species? Where have they been hiding out all these millennium? 
Your thoughts......

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Earth's Axis and the Weather

Not sure if you are aware of the fact that the Japanese earthquake in March sped up the Earth's spin by a microsecond and tilted the axis by several inches.

 Could this account for the strange weather patterns we've all experienced? 

 Could this explain why people are acting so wonky?  

Monday, July 18, 2011

Cat Tales ~ Sylvester

Today Me is going to introduce you to the last of the clowder. His name is Sylvester.

He joined the group just a little over a year ago. He had been hanging around outside for awhile - never coming very close to the house. And then one day he found an open window and just came right on in!

Mommy found him all curled up by Daddy's 'puter. And Sylvester has been bestest buds with Daddy ever since.

Sylvester is a unique kitty 'cause he's got thumbs! Kitties with thumbs are also known as 'Hemingway Cats' or Polydactyl Cats.

Once he gets over his teenage "I Know It All" phase, Me's going to teach him how to use those thumbs!
Can Opener here We come!

Purz and Catnip Dreams ... Gomez

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Of String and.....

The Art of Chiharu Shiota

Friday, July 15, 2011

What do you see?

You can click on the photo to enlarge it!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Grandmother of All Oak Trees

The Angel Oak is a Southern Live Oak tree located in Angel Oak Park, in Charleston, South Carolina, on Johns Island, one of South Carolina's Sea Islands. 

The Angel Oak is thought to be one of the oldest living organisms east of the Mississippi River ~ It is estimated to be in excess of 1500 years old. 

The Tree stands 65 ft tall, measures 28 ft in circumference, and shades with its crown an area of 17,000 square feet. Its widest crown spread point-to-point is 180 ft, which is longer than any other live oak in the country. Its longest limb is 105 feet in length. 

This is going to be a "MUST SEE" in our not too distant future!

And here for more! 

*** I came across info on this glorious tree not long after I read a book by Piers Anthony, The Shade of the Tree. The book is about a gigantic Live Oak in Florida that has the capability of conscious thought and is able to communicate with humans via telepathy. (Now wouldn't that be fun?!) I can see this tree with that kind of capability! ***

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Spider Alert!!!

Just trying out my new camera .... Yep! You can see the hair on his legs! Remember, you can click on the photo to enlarge it!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Cat Tales ~ Fur Season...

Is OFFICIALLY underway!

Mommy mutters a lot under her breath about the dratted Dust Bunny herd. Me's a little confused cause Me don't see no Bunnies dusting in the house....

Purz and Catnip Dreams ... Gomez

Sunday, July 10, 2011