Tuesday, December 31, 2013


After watching the news this week, I learned of the Ohio Department of Safety's new Habitual Offender Registry. Those individuals with five or more drunk driving offenses are now listed for the public to view.

I decided to check it out. I went to the website, put Fayette County in the search box and learned that 14 people in this county are offenders, only one a woman. It lists their last known address, birth date, and dates of the offenses.

Driving after drinking in any amount is NOT a good choice. There are so many other options available: call a friend to pick you up, call a relative; take a cab, etc.

New Years is a nice time to celebrate, but do it responsibly – like toast with Eggnog not alcohol.

I have always supported MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and in 1999 I received a framed Certificate of Special Appreciation, which hangs on a wall with other awards and certificates.


Monday, December 30, 2013


Much has been said in public and on the news about the recent Duck Dynasty curfuffle. The Robertson family made millions with their invention and now have a reality show making more money. I don't fault A&E for suspending Phil Robertson for his malicious comments, it's their business. But, Robertson didn't make his awful comment ON the air or ON his TV show. However, people in the public eye should NOT make comments like that without some kind of repercussion (large or small). Or, keep their mouth shut! His suspension has been lifted and he now back on the show.

As a God-fearing family, Bible believing group, Phil Robertson is NOT a good representative of his family if he makes homophobic or racial comments in public. Jesus healed the sick, fed the poor, and walked with leapers. Jesus treated ALL men equal. So should Mr. Robertson.

I don't like BIGOTS and I don't like RACISIM. My best advice would be to STOP WATCHING DUCK DYNASTY unless you don't mind rich people flaunting themselves and being racists and bigots. I never watched the show to begin with - and I DON'T plan to start now!

Note: A local cop made similar comments on social media recently (which is NOT his job) and will probably get his hand slapped and get back to work, the same as Mr. Robertson did.

Sunday, December 29, 2013


If you've watched the news this past week, you've seen the stories about the busy package workers at UPS. So many people and companies like Amazon used their services, they were overwhelmed with deliveries.

I became unintentionally acquainted with this quagmire. The UPS man showed up at my door yesterday and I was not expecting any packages. UPS markets their usual delivery time as three days for most United States deliveries.

The first thing I did was to look at the return address part of the label and saw it was from my niece in Tulsa, OK. That was a surprise, because she was the only family member I heard from this holiday.

She sent me a NASCAR calendar; she knows how much I love NASCAR. It was so nice of her to think of me at this time of year.

I don't think UPS was the only entity with slow delivery services this year. Today I got a Christmas card from my niece too. Both the postmark and shipping date were prior to the 25th. I just think so many people were using mailing/shipping services this year that the businesses got overloaded.

I didn't mind at all. I think it was great to get an unexpected surprise after the 25th, since that day was a quiet one for me. Because I had no expectations at all, it was a pleasant pick-me-up to receive both. The UPS delivery man and my mailman received big smiles from me for their work. They both work hard and get little praise sometimes from people who expect so much more.

Friday, December 27, 2013


Red sky in the morning – sailors take warning, (a storm is coming)
Red sky at night – sailors' delight. (the storm has passed)

The rhyme is a rule of thumb for weather forecasting, dating back over 2000 years, based on the reddish glow of the sky, related to storms in the area. Due to the rotation of the earth, storm systems travel from west to east.

I have very quiet neighbors – for the most part. I live on a cul-de-sac with only 10 homes. I know 90% of my neighbors. The ones I don't know are the quietest.

My backyard is the quietest area of all. There is a small cemetery behind me. I am not superstitious nor believe in ghosts. Obviously, I'm not into feng shui because those who are will not live near  a cemetery. Living behind a cemetery also insures there won't be any big development near the site and it will be well maintained.

Cemeteries are full of history. Sometimes there is a beautiful view out my backdoor (as you can see in the photo). In the last two years, I really got interested in genealogy and have researched my family back many generations.

I checked a real estate website and found that homes close to cemeteries sell for more than others, because of the “quiet neighbors” issue. They compared the $162 per square foot to the $145 of homes further from cemeteries.

Some people who love living near a cemetery like the idea that they are near history. Just like living in an antique house gives some people a sense of the past and continuity, living near a cemetery — especially one of the very old and historical ones — can provide that same sense of continuity and grounding. 

Living here has grown my interest in history, and I do feel grounded here. And I love the QUIET atmosphere.

Thursday, December 26, 2013


It was a quiet day at my house for Christmas.

I had five snowmen decorations in a box in the guest room, so I got them out and put them up in the living room. I even wore red slacks and red Santa socks today.

Two of my friends said they were stopping by this afternoon. He and his wife sang three Christmas songs while she played the accordion. (I didn't even know she played accordion.) He said he plays the accordion too. I learn something new every day.

They came in for some hot chocolate and cookies and visited for a few minutes. When they left, they went across the street to serenade my neighbor who also lives alone.

When they left, I took the snowmen down and put them away. I'm ready to get on with the week now. I have too many sad memories related to Christmas.

I am looking forward to a better New Year. This year was unusually sad for me, financially devastating, and had some heartbreaking events. Its got to get better!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013


A touching Christmas song that brings memories to some.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013


Please watch one of my favorites:

Friday, December 20, 2013

Thursday, December 19, 2013


It's not wrong to be different. A friend told me my choices of holiday music were not "Christmasy" yet after some Internet searches, I found that I am not alone in my choices.

Christmas songs are an important part of the season, but it's easy to become tired of the same ole songs. There are different genres of music. There are uniquely funny or crazy Christmas songs (check out YouTube) with many albums sold by different artists to prove it. (See this link or this link.) There's also an album entitled Funny Christmas Songs (see here) on which you will find I Don't Want "Nuttin For Christmas."

I'm just not the SILENT NIGHT kinda gal, I like the alternative or different genres that make me smile and remember my youth. Sometimes favorite songs remind you of certain things of the past, happy times, or special memories. As long as it makes me happy, I don't mind being "different" (liking the normal "Come All Ye Faithful" kind of songs).

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


I love this one! I have been to a Jeff Dunham concert and he is great! Peanut and Achmed are my favorites. Having most all his DVDs, I can watch him anytime.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Another favorite!

Monday, December 16, 2013


Watch these videos - they will make you smile!

Sunday, December 15, 2013


I love a Charlie Brown Christmas!

Saturday, December 14, 2013


I'm going to share some of my favorites in the next few blogs. This song has been a favorite of mine for years and I play it over and over before Christmas. Then the popular Grinch, those who try to take the spirit out of the holidays.

Friday, December 13, 2013


A new twist on an old classic:

Thursday, December 12, 2013


Bob Hill and his new wife Betty were vacationing in Europe, as it happens, near Transylvania. They were driving in a rental car along a rather deserted highway. It was late, and raining very hard. Bob could barely see 20 feet in front of the car.

Suddenly the car skids out of control! Bob attempts to control the car, but to no avail! The car swerves and smashes into a tree. Moments later, Bob shakes his head to clear the fog. Dazed, he looks over at the passenger seat and sees his wife unconscious, with her head bleeding! Despite the rain and unfamiliar countryside, Bob knows he has to carry her to the nearest help.

Bob carefully picks his wife up and begins trudging down the road. After a short while, he sees a light. He heads towards the light, which is coming from an old, large house. He approaches the door and knocks. A minute passes. A small, hunched man opens the door. Bob immediately blurts, "Hello, my name is Bob Hill, and this is my wife Betty. We've been in a terrible accident, and my wife has been seriously hurt. Can I please use your phone?"

"I'm sorry," replied the hunchback, "but we don't have a phone. My master is a doctor; come in and I will get him!"

Bob brings his wife in. An elegant man comes down the stairs. "I'm afraid my assistant may have misled you. I am not a medical doctor; I am a scientist. However, it is many miles to the nearest clinic, and I have had a basic medical training. I will see what I can do. Igor, bring them down to the laboratory."

With that, Igor picks up Betty and carries her downstairs, with Bob following closely. Igor places Betty on a table in the lab. Bob collapses from exhaustion and his own injuries, so Igor places Bob on an adjoining table. After a brief examination, Igor's master looks worried.

"Things are serious, Igor. Prepare a transfusion." Igor and his master work feverishly, but to no avail. Bob and Betty Hill are no more.

The Hills' deaths upset Igor's master greatly. Wearily, he climbs the steps to his conservatory, which houses his grand piano. For it is here that he has always found solace. He begins to play, and a stirring, almost haunting, melody fills the house.

Meanwhile, Igor is still in the lab tidying up. His eyes catch movement, and he notices the fingers on Betty's hand twitch, keeping time to the haunting piano music. Stunned, he watches as Bob's arm begins to rise, marking the beat! He is further amazed as Betty sits straight up! Unable to contain himself, he dashes up the stairs to the conservatory. He bursts in and shouts to his master: "Master, Master! The Hills are alive with the sound of music!!!!"

Now - SMILE ya'all!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


According to the dictionary, the word "incite" means to provoke or urge on.

A religious quote I found said: "Do not let your hatred of [a person] or people incite you to aggression."

"Hatred is often associated with feelings of anger and a disposition towards hostility. Commonly held moral rules, such as the Golden Rule, oppose universal hatred towards another."

Romans 12:19: Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

1 Thessalonians 5:15: See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone.

I am reminded of the story of How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary says a Grinch is an “unpleasant person who spoils other people's fun or enjoyment”. "We all know that the real reason he hated Christmas was that his heart was too small." Let your heart be open for the holidays.

""The last thing he took was the log for their fire!" To ruin Christmas, the Grinch knew he had to get EVERYTHING, every last speck from the Whos’ houses. But guess what? They didn't care that everything was missing because they knew that material things are not the point of Christmas. Christmas may but come once a year but the essentials of the season, like coming together as community and giving back to those in need, stay with us all year long."

No presents doesn't mean no Christmas. Good food and good company makes everything better. In the end, the Grinch made it up to the Whos and sat down to a meal with them.

The moral of this is: grow your heart bigger; don't incite people against another; do not seek vengeance or repay evil with hatred.

Do not let a Grinch steal your happiness or Christmas; we need more peace and love in this world.

Sunday, December 8, 2013


While taking a routine vandalism report at an elementary school, the policeman was interrupted by a 6 year-old looking up and down his uniform.

He asked, “Are you a policeman? “Yes,” he answered, and continued writing the report.

“My mother said if I ever needed help I should ask the police. Is that right?”

“Yes, that’s right, the policeman told him. “Well, then,” the little boy said as he extended his foot toward him, “would you please tie my shoe?”

Saturday, December 7, 2013


Remember to purchase your Forever Stamps or pre-stamped envelopes now.

I was in the post office a couple days ago and learned that postage is going up AGAIN. Because of the DO NOTHING CONGRESS!

Now it will cost 49 cents to mail a regular first class letter and 34 cents to mail a post card. It is no wonder a lot of people pay their bills online, have automatic withdrawals for payments, or pay in person when they can.

If Congress would have done their job (which they are getting paid quite well for), a Bill could have been passed to lower their annual advance payment plan (which takes billions out of their operating expenses). Congress takes more time off than working, or caring about the American people.

Therefore, the postal service has had to take steps to boost revenue. They are also offering a new Priority Mail Express mailing service for an additional $5.00. Here are the new announcements:

Friday, December 6, 2013


Tim Russert was an American television journalist and lawyer who appeared for more than 16 years as the longest running host of Meet The Press. He was born in Buffalo, New York in 1950; attended Cleveland State University, and Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. Being from Cleveland, I admired him and his education. Tim also had German and Irish ancestry as I do.

He wrote two books before he died in June 2008 and I have been fortunate to have recently acquired a copy of each. He died of a heart attack while at work, doing what he loved to do. I have missed him on TV, his devotion to the Buffalo Bills, and his great prediction on a whiteboard of FLORIDA FLORIDA FLORIDA during the 2000 presidential election. His second similar prediction of OHIO OHIO OHIO during the 2004 election was also right on target. I look forward to reading my new books.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


My Nascar wall is the introduction to the room with mementos from Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr and Sr.

My collection is displayed on three book shelves.

I have so many Earnhardt Senior and Junior items, I need two shelves to display them.

My Nascar collection ranks among the top five things in my life.

Then there are the hats, bags, belt, key chains, clocks, and other items that put the final touches on the collection.

The third shelf for Jimmie Johnson was in yesterday's blog article.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Jimmie Johnson won another championship. He is seen here with car/team owner Rick Hendrick (left) (Hendrick Motor Sports) and his Crew Chief Chad Knaus (right).

I have been a NASCAR fan for many years. I began to like Jimmie Johnson when he was a rookie. Now he is a SIX TIME CHAMP. He has won the Sprint Cup Series Championship six times. He won championships in 2006 through 2010; he finished sixth in 2011 and third in 2012. He now has one less championships than the two top champs who have seven each: Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt, Sr. Jimmie Johnson has also been named Drive of the Year four times.

Jimmie Johnson is also the first driver since Bobby Allison in 1982 to win both the Daytona 500 and the Coke Zero 400 at the Daytona Raceway in Florida. He is a champ in my book!!!

This is part of my Jimmie Johnson memorabilia - one bookcase full. Tomorrow I will show you the rest of my collection, because I also collect items for Dale Earnhardt Jr and Sr.

Monday, December 2, 2013


Some people cook the old fashioned way, some cook from scratch, and I just LOVE crock pot cooking. I have cooked chicken, pork, tuna, and (since I don't eat much beef) a little beef. I have tried small and large size crock pots for different size dinners (alone or for company).

Most of my meals are made in either of two sizes, and usually yield enough for two nights' dinners. I started out experimenting until I really got the hang of it. I don't follow a recipe, I just cook what I want to eat, but I do add different items (like mushrooms, fried onion chips, cheese, etc.) to enhance the flavor.

I have to admit I was a little surprised when I started writing down the model numbers of each crock pot and checking the sizes of each. As the below photograph shows, right to left, I have a Rival 8 quart oval in red; a Proctor Silex 4 quart oval in white; a Rival 1.5 quart red round; and a Rival 16 ounce Little Dipper (which is sold with the 8 quart) round, which is good for sauces, dips, and melting chocolate for a strawberry dip.

I mainly use the 1.5 quart for hot dogs and sauerkraut; and my Thanksgiving dinner was cooked in the 4 quart. Except for the Little Dipper, they all have removable stoneware crocks for easy cleaning. The Little Dipper can also be used for the heatable potpourri or the scented crystals from Pink Zebra ( which helps the house smell good. (I have a friend that sells Pink Zebra so I'm going to try the orange slices scent.)

My Rival 2 quart round is used for stews and smaller single meals. It also has the removable pot for cleaning.

The two I don't use much anymore are called Vintage Rival models, because the crocks are not removable and are several years old. The tall orange Rival is a 2.5 quart round; the shorter orange round Rival is a 3.5 quart model. The 2.5 quart was my first crock pot, and my second acquisition was the 3.5 quart, which I used more than anything else for a long time. Now they are used as spares for fixing large meals that need multiple cooking vessels.

If anything ever happened to my stove, I could survive with my seven crock pots, my microwave, and the one burner hot plate I keep for emergencies. I LOVE CROCK POT COOKING!

Sunday, December 1, 2013


I just love cooking - MY WAY. I was blessed to be able to cook a small cornish hen this year for Thanksgiving dinner. Dining alone is challenging, but I think I have mastered it over the years.

I put the hen in my crockpot at noon and put pats of butter on/around it. About 3 pm, I added more butter and put the green beans and potatoes in to cook with the hen. After checking it hourly, three hours later I had the kitchen smelling delicious and a tender dinner read to eat. As I took up the hen, the meat was falling off the bone, juicy and tender.

I am thankful I was able to have a quiet Thanksgiving at home with my dog and cat, counting my blessings, and I didn't have to travel. I'll leave the travelling to others - I like to cook when I can.

Friday, November 29, 2013


Tonight, I watched the movie Gone With The Wind for the umpteenth time. I seem to empathize with Scarlett. She struggled most of her life. She had to make something out of nothing at times. Her one love belonged to another. She moved on with her life, but he always had a space in her heart.

Yes, sometimes I believe that Scarlett and I have a lot in common. She was up, she was down, she fought her way back up and saw many troubles. I've sure had my share, and fought my way back. There are a lot of complicated emotions inside Miss Scarlett, and I understand most of them. I've been there!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


The Menurkey was created by Asher Weintraub, a 10-year old from New York. More than 6,000 units have sold online this year, and currently The Jewish Museum of New York online shop is out of stock. It is made of plaster and the feathers hold the candles.

The menorah is the traditional candelabra used to celebrate Hanukkah, an eight-day holiday that commemorates the second century BC victory of Judah Maccabee and his followers in a revolt in ancient Judea against armies of the Seleucid empire.

Fourth grader Weintraub said his cartoonish turkey, which uses its feathers to hold the candles, is a lighthearted way to celebrate the holidays' similarities. The two holidays coinciding on the calendar won't happen again for thousands of years.

Hanukkah begins at sundown and the second candle is to be lit on Thanksgiving Day. Hanukkah and Thanksgiving share the same theme - being thankful for our blessings. So be thankful for your friends and family, and for what you do have, no matter how small (or large) a bounty it is.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


When I was eight years old, my mother took me to Knickerbocker's Toy Store in Cleveland. I was allowed to spend my allowance on anything I wanted - up to the $5.00 I'd saved.

I fell in love with a monkey and it cost $5.00. I purchased it and carried it everywhere I could. I named him Pinkie. During the summer of that same year, we went to Daytona Beach, Florida on vacation and I took Pinkie with me (see photo).

While cleaning out my attic in June this year, I found Pinkie, packed away in a box for safekeeping. A box of memories.

Pinkie has been occupying the second pillow on my bed since June. Pinkie has aged - he's now 61 years old - but still in great shape, keeping me company, and keeping my childhood memories alive.

Monday, November 25, 2013


A storm door is a wonderful thing. It helps keep out the cold in winter, and has a screen to let fresh air inside in summer. The only problem is - they get older as time goes on.

My inside door handle got loose and one day while pulling the door closed behind me, the handle came off in my hand. I attempted to put it back together, but it only lasted a few days. The next time it came off, I had my handyman fix it. He took it apart and did a better job of getting it fixed. That fix lasted a couple weeks or more.

The third time it came apart I decided a new door handle was needed. The usual trips to Ace Hardware and Home Depot taught me that manufacturers don't make replacement parts for old doors like mine to be sold at retail outlets. I never tried an online search for it.

The next best thing was to resort to the "older method" of originality. I went to Cooks Home Improvements, the business that originally sold the door to my mother and installed it. I took a cell phone photo of the door handle with me and asked if he had any replacement parts.

After searching for a while in his "spare parts room" I was handed a door handle exactly like the one on my door, with the exception of the color (brass versus black). I really didn't care what color it was, as long as it works on the door. I went home to install the new handle and learned how and why it came apart in the first place. It was not due to the inner-workings (or guts) of the mechanism. With years of wear, the outer ring broke away from the rectangular base; after all, the door was installed between 1972 and 1982.

New/old replacement parts are not so bad after all! It works!!

Sunday, November 24, 2013


A husband and wife who lived on a farm in Greenfield, Ohio for approximately 75 years, recently moved to a nursing home. A majority of all their belongings were being sold at auction today. I was told by the auctioneer who contracted with the family that they collected old historical items, books and ephemera from Fayette, Highland, and Ross Counties. While previewing the sale items, I recognized an item that formerly belonged to my great-great-grandfather, James A. Porter of Greenfield.

My great-great-grandfather owned and operated the Empire Livery Stable in the mid-1800s. I have done extensive research on my family tree and traced my grandfathers' roots in Highland County back to the early 1800s. The number 44 on it is of specific significance to me.

Today, I had a chance to purchase a piece of family history. This brass livery tag was a part of the sale items and it has now been returned to the Porter family, of which I am a direct descendant. I felt an overwhelming sense of pride when I acquired it and have been looking at it all evening. I will find a nice display case and mount it properly for others to observe.

History is mine - and I am proud of my heritage - and the small piece of memorabilia I now can call my own!

Saturday, November 23, 2013


I set up at a craft show today. There were almost 40 vendors there and a nice crowd. However, it was a tiring day - taxing on the body. Loading and unloading is getting harder and harder for me.

When I got home, I was so tired and my body was just plain sore. The old saying: your dog takes after you when you've been together a long time - sure rings true in this household. Below is a perfect example of how we relax. The couch and a long nap followed my return home late this afternoon. But I'd do it again if there were another show opportunity!

Friday, November 22, 2013


On November 22, 1963, I was at work at 9th and Euclid Avenue in Cleveland, Ohio. One year out of high school, I took the bus to downtown Cleveland daily to my job running a teletype machine for a stock broker's office. The shocking news came over the wire and we were all stunned at what happened in Dallas that fateful day.

In May of 2006, I made a trip to Dallas (on my way to visit my aunt who lived in Texas), and visited Dealy Plaza. I toured the book repository museum. The photos are of the window area where the shot was fired; the wall mural inside the entrance; and the white X in the middle of the roadway where the motorcade was at the time the shot was fired. This photo of Kennedy hangs on my living room wall. A day of memories.

Thursday, November 21, 2013


I dislike going to a laundromat! However, yesterday, after doing two loads of laundry, and putting the first load into the dryer, the dryer started making a noise that I knew was not good. I made adjustments to the amount of items inside without any change in the dryer's malfunction.

For safety's sake, I turned it off, let it cool, and called my handyman/repairman.

I couldn't let my wet clothes stay in the dryer, so this morning I took them to the nearby laundromat to dry them.

I put them all in one large dryer, added $1.00 in quarters, and waited the 20 minutes for them to dry. During that time, I walked around the facility observing the conditions.

I was surprised to learn that there were 52 dryers (30 on one side of the building, 22 on the other side) all numbered. I found "out of order" signs on 24 dryers (almost half).

Then I counted the washers and saw 76 washers, 16 of which were high capacity-double load-type, and found 33 with "out of order" signs attached.

All I could think about was: how can anyone run a business when half the units are not working. The owner must not be working either - or the repairman would be there to fix things so more people could put their quarters in and wait the 20 minutes for dry clothes (or the 30 minutes to wash them).

Even the soap dispenser machine was marked "out of order." So bring your own soap!

My handyman showed up this evening and my dryer is fixed. He can fix anything!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


In memory of November 19, 1863:


Sunday, November 17, 2013


Friday I set up at a craft show held at the Little Red Schoolhouse at the Fayette County Fairgrounds. I was selling my homemade lamps and a few other items.

The next craft show where I will be set up is next Friday at Country Glenn Nursing Home and Therapy Center here in town. A large variety of vendors/crafters are scheduled to be there with a variety of unique gift items for the holidays.

I've seen the event advertised in the local paper a few times, so we are all hoping for a large crowd to be in attendance.

Here are a few photos of my recent setup, and other vendors who were there.

Charms & More - Italian Charms

G.W. Jewelry

Tracy's Crafts

I invite everyone to join us in a day of shopping for the perfect gift for those on your shopping list!

Saturday, November 16, 2013


November 16, 1973 is a memory that will never be forgotten. It was the day my mother called me to say my dad had just died.

Dad was in a nursing home after an aneurysm, surgery, a couple strokes, and a heart attack over a three year period. I remember that day and it rocked my world. My dad and I were very close while I was growing up.

Mother was with dad at the moment of his death, I was at work. Dad was an engineer, draftsman, Mason, Shriner, salesman, and inventor (with more than one patent registered in the U.S. Patent Office). He was the smartest man I ever knew and I miss him.