Thursday, October 29, 2009

Another Award

My cup overflows!  Lisa at Retro Housewife Goes Green gave me this award!  Thanks so much!

Here are the rules . . .

1.) Thank and post URL to the blog that gave the award.

2.) Pass the award along to 6 brilliantly over the top blogs (blogs you love!) Alert them so they know to receive the award.

I’m nominating these 6 blogs:

Posted from Home
This Vintage Chica
Power to the Peaceful
The Frugal Girl
Ecology of a Woman

3.) Copy and paste this quiz… Change the answers, ONE word only!!

1-Your cell phone? Old
2- Your hair? Brown
3-Your mother? Southern
4-Your father? Southern
5-Your favorite food? Vegetarian
6-Your favorite drink? IcedTea
7-Your dream last night? Scary
8-Your dream/goal? Peace
9-What room are you in? Family
10-Your hobby? Reading
11-Your fear? Pain
12-Where do you want to be in 6 years? Traveling
13-Where were you last night? Home
14-Something that you aren’t? Superhero
15-Muffin? Blueberry
16-Wish list item? Nothing
17-Where did you grow up? California
18-Last thing you did? Cleaned
19-What are you wearing? Jeans
20-Your TV? CSI
21-Your pets? Many
22-Friends? Yes
23- Your life? Complicated
24-Your mood? Relaxed
25-Missing someone? Yes
26-Vehicle? Honda
27-Something you aren’t wearing? Shoes
28-Your favorite store? Amazon
29-Favorite color? All
30-When was the last time you laughed? Today
31-Last time you cried? Haiti
32-Your best friend? Bill
33-One place you go to over and over? Barnes/and/Noble
34-One person who emails you regularly? Bill
35-Favorite place to eat? Out

Advent Conspiracy

A better way to celebrate Christmas.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Factory Farms, Global Warming, and Disease

This morning, my hubby sent me a link to an article that I had to share with my readers as I know many of you are concerned about environmental and health issues.  Author Jonathan Safran Foer began doing research into the food industry, specifically the meat business, after becoming a father.  What he found shocked him.  According to Foer, the factory meat industry is "arguably the No. 1 cause of global warming: The United Nations reports the livestock business generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all forms of transportation combined."  In addition, it is "a decisive factor in the creation of zoonotic diseases like bird and swine flu, and the list goes on."  Not only does the meat industry inflict unspeakable pain and suffering on farm animals, it is killing us and our planet.  It seems that in this country, we want to pretend we have no control over the causes of what ails us; we're too busy looking for "cures."  Read more about Foer's findings on CNN's web site.


Once again, I've been neglecting my blog.  Life has been busy lately what with two college-age children coming and going (and bringing their friends with them).  I'm not complaining - it's wonderful to see them and know they love their home so much they have to bring their friends along as well.  Plus I've gotten to go visit them at their universities - our son is 1 1/2 hours away and our daughter is almost 4 1/2 hours away.  Hubby and I went to see our daughter a couple of weeks ago and made a very nice weekend of it.  We had lunch with her and took her book shopping afterwards.  Then we had dinner and spent the night with some friends in the area.  The next day they took us to Little Saigon in the Washington, DC suburbs where we had a traditional Vietnamese breakfast.  We then drove to Charlottesville where we poked around the great used bookstores downtown, had a nice dinner, and then attended a great concert at the Charlottesville Pavillion.  It was hard to return home after such a great weekend.

Now we're fully entrenched in promoting a concert at our church.  For anyone in the Danville, Virginia area, the concert is November 5 at 7:00 at New Life Community Church.  It's a concert with contemporary Christian music with Robbie Seay Band, Bethany Dillon, and Caleb (featuring the sons of Michael Curtis Chapman).  All ticket sales go to benefit the orphanage in Haiti that we visited over the summer.  It should be a great concert and a blessing to the children that live at the orphanage and/or attend the school (76 children live there and over 500 children from the community attend the school).

After the concert, I expect to get back to my usual blogging ways - for better or worse. ;)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Quote for the Day

"Use what talents you possess:  the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." 

~Henry Van Dyke

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award

Thanks so much to Deanna at Tea with Dee for giving me this award.

The 'rules' for the award are listed below:

1. Thank the person who gave this to you.
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3. Link the person who nominated you.
4. Name seven things about yourself that no one would really know.
5. Nominate seven "Kreativ Bloggers."
6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know you nominated them

Now, here goes with the seven things you might not know about me:

1. I think I'm the only woman on earth who loves The Three Stooges.
2. I wanted to be a spy when I was growing up or at least a detective.
3. I'm a hardcore vegetarian, except when it comes to Caesar salads - those pesky anchovies!
4. As a teenager, I was obsessed with the L.A. Dodgers because I thought they were cute.
5. I'm a closet sunflower seed eater.
6. Even when it wasn't cool, I liked disco music.
7. I once sang with Buckwheat Zydeco.

I'm passing on this award to the following bloggers:

1. The Conscious Shopper
2. La Bella Figura
3. Suburban Turmoil
4. Eco Yogini
5. Miss Pink Ponsonby's Swell Soiree
6. Country Pleasures
7. Une Vie Chic

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Blog Action Day - Global Climate Change

Today has been chosen as blog action day and  bloggers around the world are joining together to bring awareness to the very serious issue of global climate change.  I'm far from an expert on the subject but am very concerned about it. 

One of my pet peeves is individuals who deny that humans have a part in the changes we've been seeing in weather and climate.  Many say the changes are natural and the actions of humans have no effect whatsoever.  I have two things to say about that.  First of all, anyone who grew up in Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s knows how bad the air pollution got.  It's almost surreal when I tell people that there were days when children were not allowed outside for recess or to play in back yards.  The air was too filthy.  The entire Los Angeles basin was filled with polluted air.  The cause:  human actions.  Luckily, citizens realized this problem was human made and steps were taken to cut back on car emissions.  Now, the air in Los Angeles is much cleaner than when I was a child.  As the industrialized world grows, so do the number of cars and factories spewing pollutants into the air.  Imagine what this is doing to the globe.  If we take steps now, we might be able to see a global turnaround just as Los Angeles has seen.  If not, the earth can change in unforseen ways, threatening our health, our crops, and other creatures on the planet.

Secondly, for those who deny that humans are causing the climate change crisis, what is the down side to taking steps to clean up the earth?  Limiting how we use resources and keeping a check on pollutants are good things in themselves.  Our health will benefit thus lowering health care costs.  Wise utilization of resources will ensure that all the world can share in prosperity.   Who can be against that?

Scientists have shown that we are definitely going through climate change.  It's a shame that individuals are taking sides against the health of the globe based on what politicians say and which politicians they support.  Having an open mind and taking steps to reduce our carbon footprint is a win/win situation.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Widow's Mite

Ever since I returned from Haiti, I've been sharing my story with everyone who will listen.  The plight of the Haitians has gotten under my skin and I feel it my mission to spread their story.  Recently, a woman who has heard the story and seen the slide shows approached me about helping the children at Danita's Children.  She doesn't have internet access so was unable to donate online.  I told her to give me her check and I'd mail it to the orphanage for her.  Seems she's on a very low, fixed income and has been wanting to help the children at the orphanage as their story really touched her heart.  She recently received an extra bit of money and wanted to use it to help the orphans in Haiti.  This beautiful woman, who has so little, wanted to share it with those who had even less.  Yesterday, as I tucked the check into an envelope, it dawned on me:  this woman is giving the widow's mite.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Monday, October 5, 2009

Happy Belated St. Francis of Assisi Day

"Preach the Gospel always. Use words if necessary." - St. Francis of Assisi

Yesterday was St. Francis of Assisi Day.  He's one of my heroes so I thought I'd share a little piece of his wisdom here.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Helping Others

This past week I had the good fortune to be able to hear Pulitzer Prize winning author Tracy Kidder speak at North Carolina State University.  Among other things, he discussed his recent book, Strength in What Remains, an incredible story about Deo, a man who escaped from war-torn Burundi, spent time as a homeless man in New York City, graduated from Columbia University, and eventually returned to his homeland to build medical clinics.  Tracy Kidder also wrote a book entitled Mountains Beyond Mountains about Dr. Paul Farmer, a man who has devoted his life to fighting infectious diseases, first in Haiti and then around the world. 

In the meantime, I picked up a book at the library - Be the Change by Lisa Endlich.  This book profiled several individuals who made fortunes and were in a position to spend the rest of their lives in extreme luxury.  Instead, they chose to give back to their communities and to the world.  These individuals included people like Bill and Melinda Gates, and Donna and Philip Berber.

All of the individuals featured in the above-named books are such an inspiration to me.  Although most of us could never fund a large program, we can do small things in big ways.  After all, Mother Teresa said you have to begin with the first person.  Several things I got from Endlich's book were:  you need to have passion about what you do; you need to research the organizations you support to see where the money is going and what impact you can make;  you need to ask benefactors "what do you need?" rather than deciding what you will give; and you need to realize that you will make mistakes - it's part of the learning process.

My experiences this week have made me more committed than ever to helping others, even in small ways.  The old cliche is true:  I feel I get much more out of it than I give.