Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day Tribute

Last week as I drove from my home to my office, I noticed American flags had been hung on the telephone poles along Main Street near the Town Hall in Trumbull, CT, in anticipation of Memorial Day...

Seeing the flags waving each day reminded me of
the importance of remembering those who have
made the ultimate sacrifice for We the People....

Here are some of the historical markers in honor of those who have served this country that I found around my towns...

On a wall of the Trumbull Town Hall is a bronze etching...A Salute to Women - Veterans Day 1999
'Our community honors mothers, wives, daughters and sisters who during times of war joined their uniformed men in service as well as "kept the home fires burning" unselfishly entering the factories, shops & mills turning America into 'The Arsenal of Democracy" So vital and necessary for "victory".'

On the lawn in front of the Town Hall there is a monument to the town's World War I residents who lost their lives....

Just a few steps away is the Trumbull Veterans Memorial...Dedicated to the honor and sacrifice of the men and women of this community who seved our country in all wars...

On the back of this monument is a list of Trumbull residents who gave their lives in the service of their country from the French & Indian War, Revolutionary War, Civil War, World War I, World War II and Vietnam... The name of the first Trumbull resident to die in Vietnam is Gerald Bourdeau, who I knew growing up...he was the first person I knew to die in 'my generation's war.....

Just down the road from my office is the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park... A bronze plaque is inscribed "Vietnam War" The Trumbull Beautification Commission dedicates this park as a living memorial to the men and women of Trumbull who served their country during the Vietnam War. 'Your Sacrifice Is Not Forgotten'....

At the Easton Town Hall there is a marble monument to those Easton residents who
served in World War II and Korea...
"Lest We Forget" In memory of the Easton Veterans of World War II and Korea...

After a long struggle the town recently approved the placement of a memorial to an Easton resident and his family who were killed on September 11, 2001, passengers on the plane from Boston that was crashed into the World Trade Towers....Certainly there will be future memorials to those who have served & sacrificed in Iraq & Afghanistan....

Today in recognition of those individuals, known and never known, and to those who serve in the Armed Forces today all around the world, I will pause and remember that their sacrifices allow me, mine and everyone in these United States to be free to say, do and be what one chooses....

In 2000, President William J. Clinton signed
a proclamation calling for a National Moment of
Remembrance, a moment of silence at 3 p.m.
Memorial Day....I for one will remember to pause to say 'thank you' today...

Thursday, May 27, 2010

High Protein, Low Carbohydrate Diets

This information came from the WebMD site - a trustworthy site, and I wanted to make sure it was credible. I've been reading for years about the success stories of those who lose weight on high protein diets - and I have no doubt that they're true. But I have also heard that there are many problems with high protein diets (so I'll warn you that I already had a slanted point of view) . I still think the most important thing about dieting is to eat the things you can continue eating for a life time.

"High-protein, low-carbohydrate diets have been widely promoted in recent years as an effective approach to losing weight. These diets generally recommend dieters receive 30% to 50% of their total calories from protein. By comparison, the American Heart Association, the National Cholesterol Education Program, and the American Cancer Society all recommend a diet in which a smaller percentage of calories are derived from protein (nutrients essential to the building, maintenance, and repair of tissues in the body).

..... Most experts are concerned that high-protein, low carb diets can cause a host of problems, particularly for the large segment of the population that is at risk for heart disease. What's more, the plan doesn't permit a high intake of fruits and vegetables, recommended by most nutrition experts because of the numerous documented health benefits from these foods.

The experts say to achieve permanent weight loss you must change your lifestyle. This means following a lower calorie diet that includes grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables combined with participating in regular physical activity."

High protein diets can cause a number of health problems, including:

* Kidney failure. Consuming too much protein puts a strain on the kidneys, which can make a person susceptible to kidney disease.
* High cholesterol. It is well known that high protein diets (consisting of red meat, whole dairy products, and other high fat foods) are linked to high cholesterol. Studies have linked high cholesterol levels to an increased risk of developing heart disease, stroke and cancer.
* Osteoporosis and kidney stones. High protein diets have also been shown to cause people to excrete more calcium than normal through their urine. Over a prolonged period of time, this can increase a person's risk of osteoporosis and kidney stones.
* Cancer. One of the reasons high protein diets increase the risks of certain health problems is because of the avoidance of carbohydrate-containing foods and the vitamins, minerals, fiber and anti-oxidants they contain. It is therefore important to obtain your protein from a diet rich in whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Not only are your needs for protein being met, but you are also helping to reduce your risk of developing cancer.
* Unhealthy metabolic state (ketosis). Low carb diets can cause your body to go into a dangerous metabolic state called ketosis since your body burns fat instead of glucose for energy. During ketosis, the body forms substances known as ketones, which can cause organs to fail and result in gout, kidney stones, or kidney failure. Ketones can also dull a person's appetite, cause nausea and bad breath. Ketosis can be prevented by eating at least 100 grams of carbohydrates a day.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Easy Tips to Lose One Pound a Week

I've been thinking a lot about how it is important to lose just a pound or two a week when dieting, because losing slowly is the best way to keep the weight off and can create some life long habits that make it easier to maintain your target weight and to feel better for the rest of your life. Good nutritional habits are not something that ever came naturally to me - so I've had to spend a lot of years just convincing myself how important it is. I agree with others here, donuts and all the things we eat occasionally are fine - it's the things we eat every day that are so important.

I looked for a sight to give me some ideas for this post, and this is the first one that came up (and it's exactly what I was looking for).

Easy Tips to Lose One Pound a Week: "You must burn 3500 calories to lose a pound. That sounds like a lot of calories. But if you break it down in seven days - one week - that is only 500 less calories each day. If you add exercise you can cut your calorie intake by 300 calories and burn off 200 calories. Cutting out 500 calories (or less) per day from your diet can be as simple as trading in your regular soda for diet soda, downsizing each meal by one-fourth, or cutting out unnecessary foods such as candy bars or alcoholic beverages. One candy bar can have 260 calories in it! If you eliminate that every day you are half-way there."

While you are decreasing your calorie intake, make sure you are including a variety of foods to maintain the nutrients your body needs to function properly. Choose foods from all five food groups, limiting high fat or high sugar foods. A balanced diet should include:
* One source of lean meat or protein rich food
* One serving of complex carbohydrates
* Two-three servings of vegetables and fruit at each meal
* One serving each of dairy and whole grains

Eat five smaller meals and healthy snacks each day instead of the traditional three, you are less likely to overeat this way and will maintain your energy level. And don't feel you have to completely cut out fats. A little fat is important to help your muscles burn energy. If you eat no fat at all, your fat reserves will be slow in giving up what is stored in your body. That result is slower weight loss."

So, how do you find ways to cut out calories without starving? Here are some tips:

..... this site goes on to talk about exercise, calories and everything else regarding weight control and good health - and it's simplified and organized, with lots of links to go to also. An excellent source of information on making small changes easy.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Louisianans take oil cleanup in own hands as frustration mounts

What Louisiana is doing to control the damage of this oil spill to wildlife is so great, that I'd like to focus on it.

"Frustrated Louisianans took the oil cleanup into their own hands Sunday, heading out in boats to lay protective booms around a bird sanctuary threatened by a black tide.

"We're going out to Cat Island right now where a thousand pelicans are breeding," Billy Nungesser, president of the coastal Plaquemines Parish told AFP.

Some of the birds at the island sanctuary have already been coated in oil and have carried it back to the nests, he said.

While they're not trying to rescue the oiled birds for fear of doing more harm than good, Nungesser said local residents refused to stand idly by as more oil lapped up into the fragile wetland.

"Our crews are out there laying the absorbent boom," he said, adding that he couldn't understand why BP and the Coast Guard weren't doing more to protect his coastal parish.

In neighboring Jefferson Parish an emergency manager commandeered all 40 boom-laying boats hired by BP which were sitting idly at Grand Isle as oil sloshed onto beaches.

Bloggers and callers to a radio talk show cheered the dramatic action late Saturday night, promising the official their votes if he sought elective office.

Even after (hurricane) Katrina, we knew things would eventually get back to normal," Roy said. "With the spill, we're just unsure." Louisianans take oil cleanup in own hands as frustration mounts

Friday, May 21, 2010

Those greedy bastards don't know what they have done to our Mother!

I borrowed a picture from, "PHOTO BY TED JACKSON / THE TIMES-PICAYUNE An oily mess inundates the Roseau Grasses that mark the coastline of Southeast Louisiana at Pass a Loutre at the mouth of the Mississippi River" I hope they don't mind.

I have tried to avoid looking, listening and thinking about this awful mess. Our sister Swamp feels the pain and this morning I cry and Mother Earth cries.

New life at the Swamp to contrast the death in some of our marshes.

These are my tomatoes and a bell pepper.

This is one of my cucumbers

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Musings and news from the health world

I meant to link this article the other day, but decided today to make it a post, for GOOD LUCK

"Ecg Who didn't suspect it? Working overtime, according to a long-term study, may do a number on the ticker. The finding, which was published in the European Heart Journal, found that rates of angina, nonfatal heart attacks and death from heart-related conditions was 60% higher in people who worked at least three hours beyond "the normal, seven-hour day" compared with those who didn't work that amount of overtime..... ( We won't quibble about the "normal seven-hour day).

Maybe they were stressed out from all that work (chronic stress is bad for the heart). Perhaps they got less sleep ( sleep deprivation seems to be linked to more and more health problems with each passing day). Maybe lonely people tend to work more overtime. Maybe chronic workers go to work when they're sick instead of staying at home in bed, as they should.

Whatever the answer to the chicken-egg question that these population studies (even the best of them) tend to leave one with, it might be good to play it safe and eschew wee-hour stints at the office in favor of taking a stroll or pulling a weed or two in the garden." Research shows 'normal' work day may be better for your ticker.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Well, it's obvious that Rachael takes elections very seriously.
Maddow's "Matthews Moment"

I know everyone has alerady heard this story, and so am just pointing it out. But it sure does fit into what some of us have been hoping for: that voters would show their anger at the polls. It sends a strong message to DC - I just hope they're listening.

Voters back anti-DC, anti-establishment candidates
"Dealt fresh blows from an angry electorate, Republican and Democratic leaders in Washington on Wednesday studied the defeats of Senate incumbents and hand-picked candidates in hopes of learning lessons to avoid losses in other upcoming primaries if not the fall election.

Any doubt about just how toxic the political environment is for congressional lawmakers and candidates preferred by party leaders disappeared the night before, when voters fired Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania, forced Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln into a runoff in Arkansas and chose tea party darling Rand Paul to be the GOP nominee in Kentucky's Senate race."

Monday, May 17, 2010

What if women ran Wall Street?

Thanks Jan for mentioning the cover of your New Time edition! Perfect timing, because Carol and I have been thinking about the power of women.

Time magazine puts FDIC Chair Sheila Bair, SEC Chief Mary Schapiro and TARP Overseer Eliabeth Warren on the cover. What this means for the re-regulation of Wall Street is worth thinking about.

“Unlike many of the men they oversee, the new sheriffs of Wall Street never aspired to eight-figure compensation packages or corporate suites. Bair, Schapiro and Warren all made their careers far from Manhattan, taking on new jobs during pregnancies and outhustling the men around them. But it is their willingness to break ranks and challenge the status quo that makes these increasingly powerful women different from their predecessors. As Washington gets down to the hard work of putting laws into place that are designed to prevent another crisis, they are shaping the way government will protect investors and consumers for the next generation. Under financial regulatory reform, which all three women support, both the SEC and the FDIC stand to win powerful new authority to limit and dismantle offenders. The Consumer Financial Protection Agency, a proposed body now working its way through the Senate, is the brainchild of Warren and is envisioned as a bulwark against what she calls the “tricks and traps” that banks hide in credit-card agreements and mortgages.” What if women ran Wall St?

... just for fun, here's a little video of Bill Clinton that is completely irresistible. I'm here to tell you that - that man just keeps getting better (and that's saying a lot). Bill Clinton on Who He Finds Influential

Friday, May 14, 2010

2012, the end?

We have discussed lately, how we get hints from the Universe about what we should do or not do. Some of us try to pay attention. I mentioned that I thought that those hints keep getting rougher until we do pay attention? I think the entire world has been getting some really big, rough hints lately, hints that we all need to wake up and smell the coffee, before it's too late. Oh, that wasn't a good metaphor this morning since I can't have any and it's one of the reasons that I have put off having my blood drawn for that lab work.

Most of the hints we have been getting lately have involved making us pay attention to all the greed/gluttony that is going on in the world and just how destructive that is. The other hint seems to be pointing to the need to find safer energy sources. I think that even the most inattentive of us should be seeing the light by now.

If 2012 isn't going to be the end of the world, it certainly must be the end of our old way of thinking and doing business. If we don't make any changes, after seeing and experiencing all these huge hints we are getting, we just very well might self-destruct. No shit!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Art in the park

I see a need for a new post so thought I would post a picture from our trip to Mexico last December. This picture is from Puerta Vallarta of some artwork displayed in the park. There is something about art that touches us spiritually. While driving back from Pagosa Springs this past Wednesday, we stopped at Ghost Ranch in NM. Georgia O'Keefe bought 7 acres of the Ghost Ranch property and lived there the last 25 or years of her life. There is one mountain there called the Pedernales that she painted several times and she once said that God told her that "...if she would paint it often enough it would be hers." I would not swear to the accuracy of those words but you get the "picture." I love Ms. OKeefe's paintings and always visit her art museum when I am in Santa Fe. She was a woman ahead of her time.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Oh Happy Day all you Mothers!

Once a year it is your day to get some of that well deserved recognition but the other 364 you got the responsibility and the blame. I'm not going to write a disssertation on motherhood but I do want to tell you all that I think that being a mother is one of the most important and the toughest jobs that anyone can ever have and one that you can never retire from and sorry, there's no pention.

Hope you all have a wonderful Mother's Day and that your kids visit....or call....or write.....

Happy Mother's Day

PS. If someone does want to write a dissertation, feel free to bump this post off. I was just warming a place.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

"A Lady Always Knows When It Is Time To Leave"

We all want to say farewell and see ya later to our friend Lobie. She was a fine friend and companion to our friends Jan and John and thier family.

I’m Still Here

Friend, please don't mourn for me,

I'm still here, though you don't see.

I'm right by your side each night and day,

And within your heart I long to stay.

My body is gone but I'm always near,

I'm everything you feel, see or hear.

My spirit is free, but I'll never depart,

As long as you keep me alive in your heart.

I'll never wander out of your sight.

I'm the brightest star on a summer night.

I'll never be beyond your reach.

I'm the warm moist sand when you're at the beach.

I'm the colorful leaves when fall comes around,

And the pure white snow that blankets the ground.

I'm the beautiful flowers of which you're so fond,

The clear cool water in a quiet pond.

I'm the first bright blossom you'll see in the spring,

The first warm raindrop that April will bring.

I'm the first ray of light when the sun starts to shine,

And you'll see that the face in the moon is mine.

When you start thinking there's no one to love you,

You can talk to me through the Lord above you.

I'll whisper my answer through the leaves on the trees,

And you'll feel my presence in the soft summer breeze.

I'm the hot salty tears that flow when you weep,

And the beautiful dreams that come while you sleep.

I'm the smile you see on a baby's face.

Just look for me, friend, I'm everyplace!

Author Unknown

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Go Dylan, go!

Go Dylan, go. We wanna know. Set a fire below. Go Dylan, go.

I have learned more from watching the Dylan Ratigan Show about this financial mess than I ever have before. I, for one, want to thank him for working so hard to help inform the American taxpayer.

Dylan, yesterday, was talking about the worthless crap that the Fed has bought in the past. He named a few things but most of it almost no one knows about. We don't have a clue. We won't be happy when we do find out.

Also I saw a brief headline on Huff Post that stated that the Senate leadership may support breaking up the banks and auditing the Fed. Could this be true???? Is someone growing some gonads?? Are people like Dylan helping to get these things going??

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Melanoma Not Caused by Early Ultraviolet (UVA) Light Exposure, New Fish Experiments Show

(I'm posting this article until someone else has a post they want to put up. Please feel free to replace it.)

"UVA exposure is unlikely to have contributed to the rise in the incidence of melanoma over the past 30 years, the researchers conclude, because the fish model had been the only animal model to indicate a connection between exposure to UVA at a young age and later development of melanoma". (The 1993 experiment could not be replicated in mammalian models of melanoma)

Our data refute the only direct evidence that UVA causes melanoma, which is not to say that UVA is harmless....... UVA is just not as dangerous as we thought because it doesn't cause melanoma....

UVA is a carcinogen responsible for squamous cell carcinomas that also causes premature aging of the skin and suppresses the immune system. It's also possible, the authors note, that long-term chronic exposure to UVA can hasten the progression to malignancy of melanocytes in the skin that are already on the path to becoming melanoma.

The thought was that people who used sunscreen stayed out in the sun longer, absorbing a higher dose of UVA, causing a higher risk for melanoma" Mitchell said. Most sunscreens now protect against UVA. However, the increase in the incidence of melanoma has been thought to be partly attributable to childhood exposure to UVA back when sunscreens blocked only UVB. That's unlikely, given the new results...

UVB exposure damages DNA directly, while UVA is thought to inflict its damage indirectly by inducing melanin free radicals that react with DNA to form oxidative damage that leads to melanoma. Previous studies had shown a correlation between melanin radical formation and melanoma in the UVA range of the solar spectrum. Since Mitchell and colleagues found no connection between UVA and melanoma, they note that the role of melanin free radicals in this disease is brought into question."

Monday, May 3, 2010

'Green' exercise quickly 'boosts mental health'

Carol! Found out why you feel so much better living in your tree house on the river (and me near my forest):

Just five minutes of exercise in a "green space" such as a park can boost mental health.....

"There is growing evidence that combining activities such as walking or cycling with nature boosts well-being.

In the latest analysis, UK researchers looked at evidence from 1,250 people in 10 studies and found fast improvements in mood and self-esteem

The research looked at many different outdoor activities including walking, gardening, cycling, fishing, boating, horse-riding and farming in locations such as a park, garden or nature trail.

The biggest effect was seen within just five minutes.

Green and blue
A bigger effect was seen with exercise in an area that also contained water - such as a lake or river.

Study leader Jules Pretty, a researcher at the University of Essex, said those who were generally inactive, or stressed ........... would probably benefit the most from "green exercise".