Archive for January 31, 2019

Celtic Wisdom

Today’s Thursday Thought quote dispenses some Irish wisdom about stopping and  taking a breath.

Are You Donating $162,000 a Year? has added up the monetary worth of a parent who stays at home to care for his or her child: $162,000.  That’s $5,000 more that last year.  If you are in that position (although not getting the money), you know the myriad of jobs being a stay-at-home parent entails.  And next time you’re asked, “Do you work?” you should reply, “Yes. I earn $162,000 a year but I donate it all.”

Let It Never Happen Again–to Anyone

The ultimate example of man’s inhumanity to man was put to an end 74 years ago, on January 27, 1945, when Auschwitz, the Nazi concentration camp, was liberated.  It imprisoned people who were torn from their families and lives simply because they were Jewish.  It was a place of unspeakable conditions, torture, and death.  It used human beings for ghastly experiments because, after all, these weren’t people  in the Nazi mind but sub-humans, so it didn’t matter if they suffered.  Some 200,000 people were able to leave the camp, but not without physical, emotional, and spiritual damage that has lasted even to today for those thousands of survivors still alive.

Auschwitz is still fresh in our minds on this anniversary and, to many, every day.  As it should be–so that we never allow that to happen to any group of people ever again.

Personal Note: Goodbye, Riley

This weekend my companion for 15 years passed away. Riley was a devoted companion who kept herding us, family and guests alike (she was a Border Collie). She helped me care for my husband, Frank, for a couple of years, watching that I did his infusions and medications right, nuzzled up to him as he struggled to breath, which made him smile, and comforted me these last two years without him.

Today I’m very lonely, having lost Riley and, with her, my last daily connection with my husband. Eventually, I will honor her by rescuing a dog that won’t replace her but will be a loving part of my life.

If you’re a dog-lover–or ever had a pet that was part of your family–you understand.

Frank and Riley

New GMO Label Rules Don’t Use the Term GMO

Remember this word: Bioengineered.

It’s the term the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has settled on for food labels that will indicate the presence of genetically modified organisms or GMOs in our food. In a final rule published earlier this month, the Agricultural Marketing Service arm of the USDA spelled out the new national mandatory food disclosure standard for bioengineered or BE foods.

It will require “food manufacturers, importers, and other entities that label foods for retail sale to disclose information about BE food and BE food ingredients. This rule is intended to provide…. [Continue to rest of article.]

Peanuts–An Oldie but True

Charles Schultz was a wise man whose cartoon -character children presented his wisdom in ways that adults could accept.  Like today’s Thursday Thought:

En-Abling Theatre

Here’s an interesting new concept for the Arts–theatre with performers exclusively from the disabled community. There’s a lot of talent among them, but Hollywood casts what I call the “temporarily non-disabled”* into roles of characters with disabilities. That’s the case with live theater, as well.

The National Disability Theatre, created by a group of theater artists, will offer opportunities for talented individuals with disabilities to perform in major productions. In the process, they’ll be showing the world that the disability isn’t the person–and educate, say, potential hiring people to the fact that brains, creativity, work ethic, and other valuable employee-assets can NOT be determined by focusing on a person’s limitations.

Read more about this new venture at Disabled Artists Launch National Disability Theatre.

  • “Temporarily non-disabled” because all of us will, sometime in our lives, experience either a short-term or permanent disability.

Movie Recommendation

I don’t go to many movies, mainly because I get tired of shallow characters and plots driven by alternating scenes of shooting, car-chases, explosions, and sex. But I just saw one I highly recommend–On the Basis of Sex. It doesn’t try to cover a whole bunch of Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s life, as the TV documentaries do. Instead, it focuses on her as a young woman, long before she became a Supreme Court Justice. It depicts her experiences at Harvard, including discrimination against her, a woman, despite the fact that she was well into the top 10% of her class. And how she used those experiences and revelations as a lawyer just starting out–much more timid than the RBG we know today. That period in her life explains this current Justice’s motivations, ideals, drive, and determination to work for justice and equality for all people.

She personifies the line that sticks with me most from the movie (paraphrased here): Talking about an issue is a support group, not a movement; doing something about it is a movement.

MLK Day–for Children

Today is Martin Luther King., Jr. Day. What’s important is to focus on what he stood for: peace, equality, and justice.

Let’s start with our children. Encourage them to talk instead of fighting when they find themselves in uncomfortable situations. Ask if they’ve been picked on or have seen other children being picked on, and explore the topic of bullying. When a child does something that physically or emotionally harms another child, get him to put himself in that child’s place to experience what she feels, and decide together what positive action, not punishment, is appropriate to heal the situation.

Read children’s books together featuring a person of another culture and talk about the similarities between the character’s life and their life. Engage them in a game that involves taking turns and sharing, adding a penalty rule for arguing and bonus points for compromising and working out differences.

n short, help your kids think and act in ways that help bring about the world MLK worked toward–one of peace and compassion.

What if there were iPhones in Biblical Days?

If you have even a little familiarity with Bible stories, you’ll get a chuckle out of this video.  I lifted it off of Fr. Matt Stanley’s Facebook–he’s my previous pastor.