Archive for December 31, 2016

Eleven (yes, 11) Ways to Get rid of your Christmas Tree

This also works for Hanukkah bushes, of course.

You know you can cut it up and put it by the curb.  Here, from the National Christmas Tree Association, are ten more ways to dispose of it without it’s ending up in the landfill: “Recycling your Tree.”

Leaf 6

[For more easy, money-saving, Earth-friendly tips, download a FREE copy of Green Riches: Help the Earth & Your Budget. Go to www.Smashwords.com/books/view/7000 or your favorite e-book seller and download to your computer or e-book device. Totally free, with no strings attached.]

Words to Avoid in 2017

In case you missed it, the Marist Institute for Public Opinion came out with its list of what, according to their poll, were the most annoying words and phrases of 2016.  They are

  • Whatever [THE most irritating by far, the poll says]
  • No offence, but
  • You know, right
  • I  can’t even
  • Huge [I wonder where that came from…]

No offence, but I can’t even imagine people thinking certain words and phrases make any huge difference in our lives, you know, right?  Whatever.

 

A Simple New Year’s Resolution

Today’s Thursday Thought quote heads us in the right direction for 2017.

“Let our New Year’s resolution be this: we will be there for one another as fellow members of humanity, in the finest sense of the word.” — Goran Persson

Grannies Fight Back

You’re an older lady who, sometime in your life, has suffered domestic violence or elder abuse.  What do you do?

A group of these women in Charleston WV joined the police department to help fight violence.  Their weapon: hugs.

The “Grandma Unit” is still new, their matching “G-Unit” tee shirts still crisp.  But they’re making plans and devising strategies to go out into their community and use hugs and love to fight crime and violence.

Watch the short video.

I’m wondering, if these women can do it, why not all of us?

 

Proposal for a New Cabinet Post

I propose a new cabinet post: Secretary of Tweets.

I’m serious.

I thought that, once the election was over, Donald Trump wouldn’t find it necessary to tweet as much.  It’s not the number of tweets, though, it’s the fact that Mr. Trump is, like many people, not careful with his word choice and tone.

With all due respect, I would suggest to him that he’s going to be very busy as President and, therefore, have even less time to choose the wording of his tweets.  At the same time,  what he says and how he says it is important to Americans as well as to foreigners, like heads of state and world-wide military leaders.  So often he has to backtrack on what he tweets, because  he meant it as a joke, for example, or came across in a troublesome way.

Mr. Trump will want to take advantage of every tool possible to accomplish the good he intends.  But what if one of those tools insults an important world-stage player he’s trying to make a deal with or creates misunderstanding, animosity, or mistrust among people or countries he needs to work with?  He minimizes his chance of success.

Think how much work this would save poor Kellyanne Conway, who is showing visible signs of exhaustion from trying to interpret Trump’s  tweets for us and make the message more palatable on camera.

Here’s where the Secretary of Tweets comes in.  Trump could tweet all he likes, but only to  the Secretary, who might be his favorite retired English teacher  or writer. The Secretary, a word-smith who knows the President well, can “translate” those tweets into ones that make the important point but do no harm, then send them out.

I think it’s a good idea.  But, no, I WILL NOT apply for the position!

THREE Reasons to Celebrate

For only the 4th time in 100 years, Hanukkah (which starts at sunset tomorrow night) and Christmas both land on the same day.  It has to do with the fact that the Jewish calendar is lunar and the Christian calendar Gregorian.  But who cares why?

Let’s just enjoy the double celebration.  After all, there are similarities.  It’s the focus and viewpoint: To Jews, Hanukkah is the Festival of Lights, celebrating the re-dedication of the new Holy Temple; to Christians  Christmas is when Light came into the world in the form of the embodied Holy Temple.

Sounds like a good time for our world to unite and celebrate peace and harmony.  And THAT would be a third, marvelous celebration!

 

          

 

 

Fruitful Love

Many people consider this a season of love.  In today’s Thursday Thought, St. Teresa of Calcutta expands this idea.

 

To Do List for Winter

Today is the first day of winter.  Time to change some habits.  Here’s a helpful list.

  1. Check and turn on your heater & be sure your outside animals have warmth and protection from the cold.
  2. Dig out heavy coats and sweaters for your family & set aside those in good condition that no longer fit or you don’t use and drop them off at a charity or shelter for the homeless.
  3. Buy more groceries at one time so you don’t need to go out into the cold so often & donate some non-perishable food items to a local food bank to help hungry families.
  4. Cook heartier meals for your family & dedicate some hours to a soup kitchen to help feed the hungry.
  5. Lay in a supply of board games to play with your kids when it’s too cold to go out to play & call to chat with someone who is alone and not able to go out even when it’s warm.

This winter, think of both your immediate and your extended family.

Why MEN Should Have a Baby Every Two Years

Did you hear about the European study showing that pregnancy altars a woman’s mind for at least two years?  No, not making her crazy, as you might expect.

“The results showed a clear distinction between the first-time mothers and all the other participants – including the new fathers – with a reduction in the mothers’ grey matter volume in the medial frontal and posterior cortex, in addition to the prefrontal and temporal cortex.

“As the researchers explain, these regions of the brain are all involved with social processes such as feelings of empathy and the ability to understand others – what is sometimes referred to as the ‘theory of mind‘.”  (Science Alert article)

The “theory of mind” is a philosophical and psychological term relating to a person’s being able to understand other people’s emotions and mental state, recognizing that each individual is unique in their outlooks, perspectives, and motives.  It’s how we recognize others as human beings and learn to get along with them.

Follow my logic here:  It’s mostly men who run the world as heads of state and military organizations.  If they experienced pregnancy every two years, could world peace be within our grasp?

 

Painting the National Anthem

I just HAD to share this one with you (thanks to Jim Knudsen for sending it to me).  It’s our National Anthem, but presented in a new, impressive, imaginative, “wow” way.

If you don’t make it to the end of the 1:40 minutes, you’re really missing out!