Archive for July 24, 2021

Don’t Toss that Banana Peel Yet

Get the most out of that banana. After eating it, shine your shoes with the inside of the peel or make a more tender roast by putting the peel into the roasting pan when cooking the meat.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is leaf.gif

For more easy, money-saving, Eco-friendly tips, download a FREE copy of Green Riches: Help the Earth & Your Budget. Go to, choose a format, and download to your computer or e-book device. For a description of the book go to My Free Books).

Seeing and Saying

Often, someone says or does something that radiates beauty. We tend to absorb and enjoy it but not otherwise respond to it. Today’s Thursday Thought quote addresses that.

Kids and Tattoos

Gangs take their toll in violence, promote anti-social behavior, and alienate young people from their families and their non-gang member friends.  Part of that life is tattoos, proudly advertising the youngster’s affiliation with their gang, as well as crimes they have committed or words and signs that others find offensive.  Unfortunately, those tattoos remain forever, interfering with the youth’s ability to re-enter non-gang society or get a job.  They mark him as someone to avoid.  Do you know a 14 to 25-year old with gang or prison tattoos on his face, hands, neck, or wrists?  And is he no longer part of a gang but trying to move into a meaningful, productive adulthood?  Give him the Homeboy Industries web address ( to get his tattoos removed for free. Help him apply for the program and encourage his progress through it.  It will take only a little of your time but help one young person regain his future.  

Betrayed by a “Friend”

I have an urgent request. Please, please, if you haven’t been Covid-vaccinated, don’t pretend otherwise. Whether or not I agree, it’s your choice not to get the shots, but it’s my choice to protect myself. I went to breakfast recently with a group of women who, we all thought, were all vaccinated. We were mask-less but outside. One talked to me up close. Now I see she’s spreading anti-vax messages and hasn’t been vaccinated. I deserved the choice of distancing and masking to protect myself, but she denied me that. I’m older and vulnerable to a Covid break-through, especially with Delta. So, please, if you choose not to be vaccinated, at least distance yourselves from EVERYONE and wear a mask to protect others from disease and fear. And don’t lie about it. Thank you!

Living Out the Ritual

“PEACE BE WITH YOU.”  When we say this to those around us in many of our churches each Sunday, we’re following the Biblical command (Matthew 5:24) to “be reconciled with your brother” before approaching the altar.  We are told to make peace with people, and to mean it.  Let’s expand the circle—stretching out beyond those right next to us at church.  Plan ahead and choose a seat close to someone we dislike, find unpleasant, are angry toward, or whose forgiveness we need.  At the Sign of Peace, we’ll be close enough to reach out to them, bringing about reconciliation within God’s family.  In fact, let’s take this attitude of harmony with us as we exit the church and interact in the rest of the world.   Might that not be what the passage calls us to do, to make a world in which we all try to spread peace?  If so, it seems like believing in and living out that Biblical ritual is a good place to start.

Righting a Personal Wrong

It happens, within families and friendships, acquaintances and strangers. Today’s Thursday Thought quote offers some reflection on how we handle it.

Avoid Harming Kids

A thought-provoking article appeared on my phone’s newsfeed from HuffPost:  6 Psychologically Damaging Things Parents Say to their Kids Without Realizing It.  We hear (and say?) them often.  This article explains why they’re damaging and what we can say instead.  Click on the title to link to it. To sum up, though, here they are.

  1. “It’s not a big deal.”

2. “You never” or “You always do XYZ.”

3. “You make me sad when you do that.”

4. “You should know better.”

5. “Just let me do it.”

6. “You’re a [insert label here].”

Apple Pie is Un-American

I’m no longer saying “As American as apple pie,” because I’ve learned that apple pie ISN’T so American!  The first apple pie recipe (1381) appeared in an English cookbook, and apple tarts and pies were common late 14th century in England.   English poets wrote about them.  In the 1600s, those pies became popular in France, Italy, and Germany.  But apple trees didn’t come to America until later, making our apples not even native to our land.  Then it took extensive pollination, which was only accomplished after a length of time, when European honey bees were introduced to America.  If it hadn’t been for the legend of Johnny Appleseed spreading seeds, that phrase probably would never have been coined.  By the way, his mission was to grow crabapples to make into hard cider, not apples for food.

Eventually, Swedish, Dutch, and English immigrants introduced apple pies to their new home.  During off-growing season, pies could be baked thanks to Pennsylvania Dutch women, who, in the 1700s, devised a way to preserve apples.  At that point, Americans declared that apple pie was a unique product of American ingenuity.

Obviously, we know a good thing when we steal, er, see it.

917 Hate Groups in the U.S.–Do You Donate?

Do you unwittingly donate to a hate group?  You can’t always tell by their names. Examples: Christian Revival Center, Free American, Israel United in Christ, Vineland Clothing, Family Research Council, and Insight USA.  These are among the 917 Hate Groups identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as currently active in our country.

To find out which ones operate in your state, look at the list of hate groups by state.

Identifying them is the first step. Not supporting them is the second step.  Eradicating them and all they stand for is the ultimate step.

A Chancy Way to Live?

Today’s Thursday Thought quote, although from the famous “Anonymous,” just struck me as a good way to live. Yes, it’s chance-taking, probably making us a little more vulnerable. Or is it just getting away from acting based mostly on what other people think? If enough people lived this way — imagine!

“Care more than others think necessary. Trust more than others think wise. Serve more than others think practical. Expect more than others think possible.”