The Dread Pirate Grasshopper Needs To Work On Subtle

gumdropsI have a grandma cupboard in my bedroom where I put a few books or little toys that I think the grandbabies would like, but might miss. I don’t buy extra stuff, it’s just things I already have. This week while cleaning a bookcase I found a little King Arthur sticker book that used to be our FYB’s. The Dread Pirate found it in the Grandma cupboard and was pleased. I told him somebody put it there because somebody thought he might like it.

“Oh, I do!” he said. “But Grandma? Did you know I also like gumdrops and lollipops?”


 Actually, as it happens, Grandma did know that. And Grandma has a stash of Yummy Earth Organic Lollipops with ingredients like Organic evaporated cane juice, organic brown rice syrup, non-gmo citric acid (from beet sugar – not corn), natural flavors, organic black carrots, organic black currant, organic apple, organic carrot, organic pumpkin, ascorbic acid.

It’s not strictly healthy, thanks to the cane juice and rice syrup, but it’s better than red dye and a stick in the eye.;-D

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Happy Valentine’s Day

vintage valentine


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Snowbal Warning


All this extra snow is now just more proof of climate change as a political talking point by people who have incredibly short memories.  Or perhaps they only  hope that you do.

It’s not just an academic discussion, either. Climate scientists turned this into a political issue when they began lobbying for draconian restrictions on the rest of us.  In fact, the UN Climate Chief longs for communist dictatorships for a more effective way to control global warming, er, climate change- i.e. you and me.

What makes it even more appalling is that there is no evidence that there is anything we can actually do that would make any sort of significant difference anyway.

Scientist Joe Vining once said that snow was a thing of the past.


Why do I not find the claims that all this snow is further evidence of man-made global warming which requires us to spend massive amounts of funding and pass laws and regulations imposing vast restrictions on all of us? Well, it’s a strange sort of scientific theory where, no matter what happens, that’s just more proof of said theory. And then there’s this:

“Milder winter temperatures will decrease heavy snowstorms but could cause an increase in freezing rain if average daily temperatures fluctuate about the freezing point.”
IPCC Climate Change, 2001
“Snowlines are going up in altitude all over the world. The idea that we will get less snow is absolutely in line with what we expect from global warming.”
WalesOnline, Sir John Houghton – atmospheric physicist,
Former IPCC author, helped set up the IPCC 30 June 2007
“Warm Winters Result From Greenhouse Effect, Columbia Scientists Find, Using NASA Model …
Despite appearing as part of a natural climate oscillation, the large increases in wintertime surface temperatures over the continents may therefore be attributable in large part to human activities,”
Science Daily, Dr. Drew Shindell, NASA, 4 June 1999
The rise in temperature associated with climate change leads to a general reduction in the proportion of precipitation falling as snow, and a consequent reduction in many areas in the duration of snow cover.”
Global Environmental Change, Nigel W. Arnell, Geographer, 1 Oct 1999
“Computer models predict that the temperature rise will continue at that accelerated pace if emissions of heat-trapping gases are not reduced, and also predict that warming will be especially pronounced in the wintertime.”
Star News, William K. Stevens, New York Times, 11 Mar 2000
“In a warmer world, less winter precipitation falls as snow and the melting of winter snow occurs earlier in spring. Even without any changes in precipitation intensity, both of these effects lead to a shift in peak river runoff to winter and early spring, away from summer and autumn.”
Nature, T. P. Barnett et. al., 17 Nov 2005

More fun stuff here.

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The Least Confessed Sin


flyA fly landed on a nice strip of gooey, sweet-smelling flypaper, Not seeing a challenger in sight, he happily announced, “My flypaper!”  Sinking his nose in the syrupy stuff, he dined sumptuously.   Then, deciding to leave, he began hopelessly beating his wings against the air- and the paper announced, “My fly!”

That’s often the way it is with a man and his possessions.  Surveying his accumulations, he proudly says, “My possessions!”  The possessions knowingly announce, “Our human!”

Francis de Sales, reputed to ave heard more confessions than any other Catholic priest said that the sin of covetousness was never one time confessed to him.  We wonder how often it is confessed to God.  This is the problem with covetousness.  It is seldom recognized by the guilty.

Covetousness is easily camouflaged. Most of those who are guilty refuse to face it.  Jesus preached about it.  ”And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all things: and they derided him” Luke 16:14

Lovers of money scoff (or at least shut out) the preacher who warns them of their sin.

Covetousness is Satan’s home field. In this park he has won the most stunning victories. Covetous is to the soul what cancer is to the body.  No wonder Jesus said: “Take heed, and beware of covetousness.” Luke 12:15

The Least Confessed Sin
By Joe R Barnett

Exodus 20:17 –  “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that [is] thy neighbour’s.”

Psalms 119:36 “Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness.”

Habakkuk 2:6b “…., Woe to him that increaseth [that which is] not his!….”

Luke 12:15 “And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”

Hebrews 13:5 “[Let your] conversation [be] without covetousness; [and be] content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”

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Home-made dishwasher soap

vintage dishwasherA friend shared the following recipe for home-made soap for the Dishwasher-  She has a large family, and she says for a bit of extra grease cutting, she puts just a squirt of hand dishwashing soap inside the door of the dishwasher as a pre-wash.

4c water
½-3/4c washing soda
1/2c borax
4T liquid castile soap
1/2  c citric acid
Boil 4c water and remove from heat. Dissolve all ingredients. Add slowly- it will bubble up a lot. Allow to cool. Will be gel-like– for more liquid consistency add up to 4c more water (and adjust to up to 2T per load).
Use 1T per load (adjust as needed)


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Random Thoughts on Marriage

Faltering Marriages: Outside of issues of abuse (which I don’t take lightly at all), it doesn’t matter whose ‘fault’ it is. Each person has the responsibility to do the right thing and love the other unconditionally, and like it or not (and a lot of patriarchal men do not like it), in a truly biblically based marriage if the man is really the leader, he needs to take the lead here, too. That’s kind of what leadership is all about. It’s not about saying, “You are acting like a whore so I don’t have to act like a Hosea and love my wife no matter what.”

On the other hand: I really hate today’s message that every divorce is caused by two people. It’s not. In a no-fault divorce society, one selfish person can destroy a marriage with no fault or incentive from the second, and the behavior of the other party is not an excuse for the leader to be less loving than God calls for all of us to be.

On Feminist Men:  I have close relatives who are strong and active feminists of the extreme left sort. Something that has puzzled me since I was a teen (when they married) is that the allegedly feminist husband in that relationship would say things to his wife in front of us that my own father, who was a total jerk, would NEVER have said to my mother, let alone in public (‘Ive told you I don’t like that shirt. It makes you look fat’, spoken to a wife who was and is a twig because if she puts on half a pound he makes her take to the gymn or jog). Then I started reading Reclusive Leftist and found that there is this huge divide between second and third wave feminists, and the second wave feminists have noted, quite accurately I believe, that progressive males just do not like women and their feminism is largely one of convenience (in a tawdry way) for themselves in most cases, and in some others just because voicing feminist sentiments is the ‘in’ thing with their peer group.  So they express feminist sentiments and they vote feminist (I assume), but  acting on those feminist sentiments is not required (this would be my own relative, who isn’t a womanizer, just a control freak in a way that would give *my* alleged ‘patriarchal overlord’ hives).





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Living wage

Not all labor merits a living wage, does it? Seriously? Flipping hamburgers merits the same pay as working in a nursing home? Some jobs are entry level jobs that are suitable for teens and unskilled laborers to get a food in the door in the job market so they have the opportunity to learn better job skills.

Minimum wage really doesn’t do what people think it does, either. As the pay scale goes up, it has to go up all over. Raise the pay to fifteen dollars an hour for hamburger flipping, and what do you think will happen to the jobs where laborers with better job skills and more complex jobs currently make fifteen dollars an hour. Will they continue to be satisfied to work just as hard for the same pay as they could get flipping burgers or putting books on the self as a page at the local library? Will others be interested in expending the effort to raise their employability if there is not any benefit to having a better set of job skills and a better work ethic?

At the grocery store where my husband used to work, not all employees made minimum wage. Clerks and stockers who had proved their worth by their excellent work ethic and people skills were rewarded with raises.  When minimum wage went up, that made their pay raise negligible, or even worthless, so they needed raises, too.

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Do what you are doing

Do what you are doing

Cradle to grave, preschool, daycare, eldercare

Hidden costs of public school: We had traded adequacy for beauty and joy, and did not even know it. That is a cost I am glad we ceased to pay years ago.

More on the costs of public education and the high cost of so-called standards:

Part IV

Part III

Here is part II
Here is part I

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Country Scenes


Looking out the kitchen window on a clearish day- the treeline at the back is several miles away, and if I enlarge the picture, you can see the cars on the highway one mile away.




Looking out the kitchen window in the beginning of one of our recent blizzards.




Looking out the backdoor on a clear day- the animal in the upper left quadrant of the picture is a fox.  I had the great pleasure of looking out the window and calling to the kids in the room with me, “Look!  A fox!” and then listening to my oh-so-superior-woodsman-son saying as he walked over to the window, “Oh, mom, that isn’t a fox it’s probably just a local- um fox.  Hey, everybody, look at the fox I jut spotted out the window!”  The Mop Top sniggered at The Boy quite gratifyingly.


I cannot tell you how much I am longing for a view with some color- green grass and leaf buds, some blue scilla, purple and yellow crocuses.  Even the red fox wasn’t reall that red this late in the season.

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Goodies from Germany





A friend who lives in Germany was in the states recently and so we received some delicious, wonderful, fabulous goodies.

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