Merry Christmas And Happy New Year Everyone!

Last night I got to attend a wonderful Christmas concert at Owen J. Roberts.  Two of my daughters are in the choir and one of them is in the band as well.  It was such a lovely evening.  Those children are so darned talented and their parents and band directors and choral instructors have a right to be very proud.  I know I am!

I don’t expect to be doing much blogging for the next few days.  I’ve made some chocolate chips and I have to make some cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning.  I’ve got family coming Christmas day and I have a date with my own crew for this evening- just all of us together around our holiday tree!  ( although one of us has gone south for a couple of days and we’ll certainly miss him!)

I hope you have a wonderful holiday.  Take some time to do something special just for you.  It’s been my pleasure to talk with you this past year and I wish you all the best in the coming year!




What a Breezy Evening We Had Last Night

Wasn’t it odd to hear the thunder last night?  I was sitting in the living room with my daughter when we heard what sounded like thunder and I asked her what the temperature was since she had been out a few hours earlier.

She told me it was chilly so I said then that can’t be thunder.  Now I wasn’t relying on any science facts to make that statement, it was more personal experience.  I feel like thunder happens when mild air clashes with cold air…Right?

We stepped outside.  My daughter had bare feet and she said the ground was icy but the air was spring like.  I smiled at her and said ” it’s thunder!”  Then the sky lit up and another crack filled the air.  My daughter grinned up at the sky and told me how much she loved seeing storms.

We came inside but left the front door open.  I didn’t change the screen to a glass panel so the wind was able to breeze into the room we were in.  Then there was a strong whipping sound and a huge train like noise which was a very strong wind moving through the “hollow” we live in.

By that time my other daughter had wandered down since she heard the thunder in her room and she wondered what was up.  We all sat in the living room in the light of the multicolored twinkling tree and listened to the sound of the storm blowing through.

I’d like to thank God for letting me live with my beautiful young daughters who   remind me of the thrill in experiencing an evening storm.  I’m sure I’d have noticed the weather even if they hadn’t been there with me, but there is something incredibly delightful in sitting in a dark space waiting for lightning to crack and thunder to boom especially when you are sharing that with people you love.






Kmart Angels?

It’s quite a phenomenon isn’t it?  Kmart’s parent company Sears Holdings is saying that this is not company driven.  The company seems to be saying that the money to pay off layaway accounts has come from big hearted St. Nick’s who want to make the holidays happier for families that might be struggling just to make lay-away payments.

While this is possible….it’s also a little odd.  Why would generous benefactors go hang out in Kmarts?  Kmart had a pretty poor showing this past year.  Their executive officers are saying that they aren’t pleased with their performance.  But they are rallying the troops and hiring a new leader.  And coincidentally they also have recorded 412 thousand dollars in ” Kmart Layaway Angel” giving.

Christmas is a big ticket holiday for retaliers.  I read something that said that they made over 30 billion in 2008.  I wonder how much a nationwide ad costs to run for 30 seconds?  Or for 60 seconds?

And how much did I say Sears Holdings is registering as layaway angel donations?  So far it’s 412,000 bucks?

Seems like a cheap marketing ploy….unless it’s a real genuine phenomenon…

Personally I  like Kmart, but you don’t see a lot of well heeled shoppers in their stores do you?  Their buildings, at least around here  are older in style.  Their staff has been sliced to the bone.  They sell everything but the kitchen sink, and I might even be wrong about that!    Their toy section isn’t as big as Walmarts.  Their electronics section is not as big and they have odd name brands.  So why are they attracting all this good will from rich benefactors?

It’s a nice story and I would love the world to be bubbling over with nice stories, but I can’t help but be a little suspicious.

Remember Lowes pissed off some people in the Muslim community for dropping sponsorship of a television program featuring American Muslims?  Remember all the grief they got for that?  And now we have almost the opposite, in a time where businesses pretend that Happy Holidays has the same generic meaning as Merry Christmas…we have a company happy to have angels dropping gifts on families.

Get ready for some made for television movies about angels who hang out around Kmarts!  Soon the big red K will stand for Kris Kringle!

I don’t want to be, but I am suspicious.




Cookies With Dolce con Leche

I made cookies today.  I cut out cookie shapes after making the “dolce con leche” or sweet milk.  Remember I’ve been talking about sweetened condensed milk? Well, if you pour it into a pie pan and you set the pie pan in a water bath, which could be a roasting pan or a sturdy cookie tray with water half way up the pie pan.

Add a little bit of salt and pop it in a 425 degree oven for an hour and a half or so.  Keep adding water to the water bath and remove when it gets a nice carmel color.  When it cools it will be a  spread like consistency that you can put between two cookies then dust with confectioners sugar!

It’s delicious.




What Do You Love?

Have you checked out the google search What do you love?  Just type in wdyl.com and you’ll find a search box with a tiny heart.  You can type in whatever you are thinking of and bingo!  You’ll get a selection of images and polls and blogs and statistics and, well, a lot more all in one click.

Someone found me through there!

What do you love?




It’s Healthy To Hate Ferrets!

Are you a ferret lover?  Well, if you are then you aren’t  going to be thrilled with this next story.  Luckily, I hate ferrets, so this story doesn’t bother me, well, not as much as it would have if I liked ferrets.

Maybe I should launch the story, eh?

Scientists have bred ferrets who can spread the bird  flu or Avian virus H5n1.  That means that they can catch it from each other simply by being in the same space.  In otherwords it’s “airborne”.  While it might be a little darkly  amusing to think about  national defense scientists worrying about bird flu being airborne…the fact is it’s a really scary proposition since humans are not immune to it.  In otherwords, if it spreads from human to human like it is spreading among the ferrets at Erasmus University then we are all up the proverbial creek without a paddle.

It is a pandemic’s dream flu.  It will tear through societies wiping out a third if not more of us.  We will become infected and we’ll spread it by breathing or by touching things and like just like in the horrifying movie “Contagion” it will murderize us, just like it’s killing the ferrets.

Okay, to sum up,watch out for infected birds.  But seriously, you must avoid infected ferrets  at all costs!  I don’t know why scientists chose poor defenseless ferrets, but with this virus everyone is defenseless. ( Even a ferret hater like me can feel bad for snuffly sneezing, ferrets that succumb to  massive organ failure.)

Let’s not worry about the scarier scenario about  scientists who are being paid by Governments to find viruses that will kill any life forms it contacts.  That is something we should have expected in this brave new world. If you didn’t expect it you are an idiot.

No, what we really should be worrying about is  some crazed  terrorist group that gets it’s hands on the virus because they could   infect some species like…um… tea cup pomeranians!  Zoiks!   If they set them loose on city  streets  then all the little girls in America as well as  some of their relatives could be infected within hours.

Tips for the day:

Don’t go near birds.

Don’t go to foreign countries that are having  outbreaks of bird flu.

Don’t worry about Government paid evil scientists.

Stay away from sneezing ferrets!

And last  but not  least,  if you see dozens of cute tiny little puppies running around loose then really,  back away slowly and call the authorities!







Bonus At Work! Why it’s Better Than a Stick in the Eye!

The other day my boss handed me two pay stubs.  That was new so I guess maybe I hesitated, or maybe she was prepared to explain immediately anyhow.

She said that one stub was the evidence of a bonus, but she quickly added that it was based on hours worked, which I guess meant  that I shouldn’t be offended that it wasn’t a million dollars which is surely what I’d have gotten if it was a bonus based on my brilliant work.  I thanked her and said that “it was better than a stick in the eye!”  And she looked at me with her head tilted to the side, she was being quite kind but I could  tell that she didn’t quiet get my inference.

I grabbed the  paycheck stubs, mumbled a quick thanks  and dashed out of her office.  I didn’t want her to call the company headquarters and ask them to retract the bonus because I’m weird.  ( just kidding boss :))

After that I thought about my response.  ” It’s better than a stick in the eye.”  I say that a lot.  It’s my instant response when I’m handling  things that could be better but that aren’t.  Like if I  get an envelope that I think is a bill and instead it’s an offer for increasing my credit balance then I say to myself ” Wow, that is better than a stick in the eye.”  If I buy a product and I think I’m going to get a refund, but I only get a partial refund  because I didn’t complete all the terms of the original agreement, well, that too is “better than a stick in the eye.”  Or I’ll say  it if someone says ” I ate the rest, but here is a bit of the crust if you really want it.” And you know what I’ll say!  I’ll say ” sure,  a little  bit is better than a stick in the eye!”

When I think about it, I can see it’s a really stupid  thing to say.  That settles it!  I’m trademarking it!