This morning I got up, had my first cup of coffee and did my normal routine of checking my email and opening the tabs to Twitter, Facebook, G+ and the News to see what is going on … some people read the newspaper while savoring their first cup of coffee, this is what I do.    While I was busy going through everything, bookmarking some, laughing at what I call my Facebook funnies. one Facebook post caught me attention:

The key to preventing moldy berries? Vinegar!

When you get your berries home,  prepare a mixture of one part vinegar (white or apple cider probably work best) and ten parts water. Dump the berries into the mixture and swirl around. Drain, rinse if you want, (though the mixture is so diluted I find you can’t taste the vinegar,) and pop in the fridge.

The vinegar kills any mold spores and other bacteria that might be on the surface of the fruit, and voila! Raspberries will last a week or more, and strawberries go almost two weeks without getting moldy and soft.

~Sandra Simmons


Let’s have a #dogerday!

Today I ask you to put away #caterday and adopt a #dogerday. image of George Graham Vest =”178″ height=”225″ />   Dogs – considered “man’s best friend” has been an integeral part of our lives for over 1500 years and yet the term “man’s best friend” did not become the popular phrase it is today until 1869 when George Graham Vest used the phrase during his final summation to a jury during a court case. It is worth reprinting the final summation as it is how many people feel to this day about their pet, their friends and companions ~

Gentlemen of the Jury

The best friend a man has in this world may turn against him and become his enemy. His son and daughter that he had reared with loving care may become ungrateful. Those who are nearest and dearest to us, those whom we

trust with our happiness and our good name, may become traitors to their faith. The money that a man has, he may lose. It flies away from him when he may need it most. Man’s reputation may be sacrificed in a moment of ill considered action. The people who are prone to fall on their knees and do us honor when success is with us may be the first to throw the stone of malice when failure settles its cloud upon our head. The only absolutely unselfish friend a man may have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous is his dog.

A man’s dog stands by him in prosperity and poverty, in health and sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground, when the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fiercely, if only he can be near his master’s side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer, he will lick the wounds and sores that come in encounter with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of a pauper as if he were a prince. When all other friends desert… he remains. When riches take wings and reputations fall to pieces, he is as constant in his love as the sun in its journey through the heavens. If fortune drives the master forth an outcast into the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that of accompanying him to guard him against danger, to fight against his enemies, and when the last scene of all comes, and death takes his master in its embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by his grave side will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws and his eyes sad, but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even to death. ( Burden v. Hornsby (1870)) image of Old Drum Statue Read more »

Stick Your Neck Out!

  The reality is that doing anything is a risk, but sometimes you have to stick your neck out to get what you want!  

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Parenting Tip – What is the Secret Word?

How often as a parent have you said to your children “Don’t talk to Strangers” or “if someone wants you to go look or see their puppies – then r

un away” ?

The reason I am talking about this is because of two different conversations that I had this morning and there is a point to all of this…… The first conversation was with Sam McFarland on Facebook about abuse and as always conversations have a habit of taking on a life of their own as seen in this screenshot -   facebook conversation with Sam Mcfarland  

“the first day she was allowed to walk back from school alone – and lured her to the car by saying they had a shih tzu puppy….  

How do we help and teach our children to be safe in the midst of strangers and how do we get through to them that cute puppies or not …never to go with a stranger?

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of what others have said via blog posts and articles, I did find one post that was very good and quite realistic and that was from Ali Goldfield on her blog Therapy Stew. Ali made an important statement “Instead of “don’t talk to strangers,” it is strongly suggested that we teach children how to interact with strangers and how to watch out for dangerous adult behaviors.”

I agree that bubble wrapping our children is not the way keep them safe and I also agree with the different tips that Ali outlined, but I also found one parenting tip that is not being mentioned and that was something that Sam mentioned – “The Secret Word”

Now what is the secret word you ask?

The secret word was something that around 30 or so years ago that I was taught to use to help protect my daughters. What it was ..was a code word that only the children and parents knew. If someone approached a kid for any reason and did not know the code word ( or secret word) that child KNEW never to go with that adult and trust me it worked! I still remember implementing this idea into my family and we had fun coming up with a word that we all could remember and then making it work for us. I still remember the time when a friend of mine went to pick up my kids from school and they refused to get into the car with her, because she did not know the secret word. I found this very good video, that you as a parent can use to help teach this important concept to your children or to help you understand the concept yourself to pass on to your children.   Sometimes it is the simple ideas that work and the ones that need to be remembered, lets face it, parenting today is as challenging if not more so as it was when I was a parent of young children…. do you have a secret word?  













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Social Media – Where is the balance?

In the world of social media, we seem to be living two extremes   Social Media Addiction     and   Anti social media disorder     While both of these videos are very funny, I have wondered many times (if) Social Networking Sites social media is good or bad for us as I go through the extremes of being on line far too much or I get to the point of not wanting to be on line at all. On I found this question – Are social networking sites good for our society? and I will show you how two people thought

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about it all- PRO (yes) Brendesha M. Tynes, PhD, Assistant Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, stated the following

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in her Nov. 2007 article titled “Internet Safety Gone Wild?,” published in the Journal of Adolescent Research: “Online social networking can facilitate identity exploration, provide social cognitive skills such as perspective taking, and fulfill the need for social support, intimacy, and autonomy. Whether constructing their profiles in MySpace, creating a video and posting it on YouTube, or talking in chat rooms, teens are constantly creating, recreating, and honing their identities — a primary goal of adolescent development. This requires constant reflection on who they are, on who they want to become, and on their values, strengths, and weaknesses. As teens prepare to enter the adult social world, online social environments provide training wheels, allowing young people to practice interaction with others in the safety of their homes.”   CON (no) Tom Hodgkinson, writer for the Guardian, stated the following in his Jan. 14, 2008 article titled “With Friends Like These…,” published in the Guardian: “I despise Facebook. This enormously successful American business describes itself as ‘a social utility that connects you with the people around you’. But hang on. Why on God’s earth would I need a computer to connect with the people around me? Why should my relationships be mediated through the imagination of a bunch of supergeeks in California? What was wrong with the pub? And does Facebook really connect people? Doesn’t it rather disconnect us, since instead of doing something enjoyable such as talking and eating and dancing and drinking with my friends, I am merely sending them little ungrammatical notes and amusing photos in cyberspace, while chained to my desk?… Clearly, Facebook is another uber-capitalist experiment: can you make money out of friendship? Can you create communities free of national boundaries — and then sell Coca-Cola to them? Facebook is profoundly uncreative. It makes nothing at all. It simply mediates in relationships that were happening anyway.”     Somewhere I feel that we lost our balance when it comes to social media and we need to get ourselves back… but how can we do this when we are pushed to be more active? Take for example Klout, while some people will question the validity of such a service, I can honestly say that for me, when I lose a point or even part of a point in the Klout score, I get a feeling of “guilt”, because as we all know the better the score the better we start feeling about ourselves and what we do. Is this what life is all about and is this what success really means? Sorry folks, but if that is what success, life and society is all about, it is time for me to get the hell out of dodge!  


  Balance…. what a fantastic word, what a glorious word and something that I feel we are losing sight of while we rush around, like rats in a maze, scoring points to engage, to influence, to be more popular and we need to stop for a moment, look around us and see what we are missing and we are missing a lot! This post is not meant to be a downer , but just a little reminder, that life is for living and that means “scoring points” by being in the real world as much as being on this virtual world, by “ engaging” with those around you as much as you need to do “hangouts” and that being popular is a state of mind – honest!