Saturday, March 1, 2014

Great Ways to Lighten Up

What can we do to achieve that happy mindset while the weather isn't cooperating? Even though the pharmacy recording is telling us to order meds for the impending allergy season, we're still shivering   Here are 4 suggestions.

1.)  Research published in BMC Psychiatry has linked low levels of vitamin B12 with "loss of appetite and sleep, and low mood."  The researchers state that B12 each day will help to keep us smiling.   Making sure we have enough B12 is as easy as eating yogurt(8 oz.) and a slice of Swiss cheese each day  (SELF, Feb., 2014, 24)

2.)  Since we've finally had a thaw with pouring rain  instead of the usual snow, maybe we can lighten up enough to appreciate the beauty that the icy blasts bring. 

Mary Kay shows us some of the beauty of winter. 



3.)  But if these two suggestions aren't enough to move you to that cheerful state, consider looking at Cheryl's and Joan H's pictures. Then close your eyes and imagine wiggling your toes in the warm sand of milder climes.

4.) AND, if all else fails, look below.  These will definitely move you to that happy state!

Photographer Unknown, forwarded to us by Mary F.

Know the two photographers of these 2 pics?  Please tell
 us so that we
can give credit.  Special thanks to Mary Kay, Cheryl,
Joan H, Mary F. and Bob A for contributing
to this post.

Photographer Unknown-forwarded by Bob A.

We Can't Possibly Have As Many Problems As Maxine

John Wagner, creator of "Maxine" says "Cartoonists are sensitive to the insanities of the world;  we just try to humanize them." (taken from "The Writer Today" about an aspiring author's journey into the writing world.)
The end of Maxine

As we progress into 2014, I want to thank you for
your educational e-mails over the past year. I am
totally screwed up now and have little chance of recovery.

I can no longer open a bathroom door without using
a paper towel, nor let the waitress put lemon slices in
my ice water without worrying about the bacteria on
the lemon peel.

I can't sit down on a hotel bedspread because I can
only imagine what has happened on it since it was last washed.

I have trouble shaking hands with someone who has been
driving because the number one pastime while driving alone
is picking one's nose.

Eating a little snack sends me on a guilt trip because I
can only imagine how many gallons of trans fats I have
consumed over the years.

I can't touch any woman's handbag for fear she has placed
it on the floor of a public toilet.

I must send my special thanks for the email about rat poo
in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet
sponge with every envelope that needs sealing.

ALSO,now I have to scrub the top of every can I open for
the same reason.

I can't have a drink in a bar because I fear I'll wake up
in a bathtub full of ice with my kidneys gone.

I can't eat at KFC because their chickens are actually horrible
mutant freaks with no eyes, feet or feathers.

I can't use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell
like a water buffalo on a hot day.

Thanks to you I have learned that my prayers only get answered
if I forward an e-mail to seven of my friends and make a wish
within five minutes.

Because of your concern,I no longer drink Coca Cola because
it can remove toilet stains.

I no longer buy
I no longer buy fuel without taking someone along to watch the car,   so a serial killer doesn't crawl in my back seat when I'm filling up.

I no longer use Cling Wrap
in the microwave because it causes
seven different types of cancer.

And thanks for letting me know
I can't boil a cup of water
in the microwave anymore because it will blow up in my face,
disfiguring me for life.

I no longer go to the cinema
because I could be pricked with a
needle infected with AIDS when I sit down.

I no longer go to shopping centers
because someone will drug
me with a perfume sample and rob me..
And I no longer answer the phone because someone will ask
me to dial a number for which I will get a huge phone bill with
calls to Jamaica , Uganda , Singapore and Uzbekistan ..

Thanks to you
I can't use anyone's toilet but mine because a
big black snake could be lurking under the seat and cause me
instant death when it bites my butt.

And thanks to your great advice
I can't ever pick up a
dime coin dropped in the car park because it was probably
placed there by a sex molester waiting to grab me as I bend over.

I can't do any gardening
because I'm afraid I'll get bitten
by the Violin Spider and my hand will fall off.

If you don't send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in
the next 70 minutes, a large dove with diarrhea will land
on your head at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow afternoon, and the
fleas from 120 camels will infest your back, causing you
to grow a hairy hump. I know this will occur because it
actually happened to a friend of my next door neighbor’s
ex mother-in-law's second husband's cousin's best friend's
Oh, and by the way...
A German scientist from Argentina , after a lengthy study,
has discovered that people with insufficient brain activity
read their e-mails with their hand on the mouse.
Don't bother taking it off now, it's too late.
P. S. I now keep my toothbrush in the living room, because
I was told by e-mail that water splashes over 6 ft. out
of the toilet..


 Our thanks to Jo who forwarded this "Maxine" to us, and of course, to the wonderful mind of John Wagner for creating a character who always makes us laugh while we identify with the same "insanities of the world."

Did We Know This? Probably Not!

(Bing Images
Every day, many times a day, we find out interesting info that we didn't know.  Humbling, but very interesting.  Any fiends,  children or grandchildren, nieces, nephews or younger friends you know may also enjoy adding the info on killer whales and wolves to their knowledge base. 

1.      What do the women of the world have in common with Pilot Whales and Killer Whales?  Hint:  You might not want any men you know to consider this question!

The answer?  All three go through menopause.  Interestingly, the whales stop having baby whales while in their 30's or 40's. They then "live to their nineties and help raise their 'grandchildren'."  We don't usually think of killer whales as doting grandmas.  (MORE, Feb. , 2014, 17).

2.   In a few weeks, a new documentary will be airing on TV that investigates the fear we humans have of wolves.

(Bing Images)

  Many of us might know that already.  But do any of us know the way that wolves can change rivers?
To find out, click on the  Films for Action  (only a few minutes long and worth the look) link below. it might change your view of the wolf. Or it will, at least, help us to understand the complicated way our natural world works.

Thanks to Kim McM  and Bob A.for sharing this with us.

Finally! Time to Read

(Bing Images:  Fotofolia_38547366)
Four book selections have earned the praise of our contributors. They span fiction, historical fiction/biography, and nonfiction choices.

Fiction:  THE MAISIE DOBBS MYSTERIES   Pearl suggests the Maisie Dobbs mysteries.  She says, "My daughter Susan turned me on to a wonderful mystery series by Jacqueline Winspear.  They take place in England, and begin around WWI.  I have found them easy to read with detailed descriptions of British class differences along with descriptions of clothing, housing, transportation, and other interesting details about life in England."

Fiction:  COMMAND AUTHORITY(2013). Tom Clancy's final novel again visits Jack Ryan, the US President, his son, Jack Jr. and recurring characters from earlier works who are sent by Ryan to fight international threats.  Reading Clancy's final work now is particularly relevant with the growing international concern about the Ukraine.  Ryan's past connects with son Jack's present, bringing back memories of a KGB assassin from 30 years ago and linking to current political corruption and military threats of turmoil in the Ukraine.(Expert Book Reviews in

Historical Fiction/Biography: Joan H recommends  THE INVENTION OF WINGS  by Mary Monk Kidd.  Published this year, the book recounts the lives of Sarah Grimke and her sister, as they grow up in the South and develop a revulsion for the institution of slavery while those around them accept it  as usual, necessary, and even a God-given right.

Sarah and Angelina Grimke play pivotal historical roles in the abolition of slavery and the women's rights movement.  And their stories are intertwined with that of  the  fictional slave, Hetty, who grows up with Sarah.  Her birth name, "Handful," describes her well. Hetty's fierce determination to assert her dignity and to struggle for freedom illustrate the slave's existence in Charleston during the 1800s.
Nonfiction: Eric suggests EMPIRE OF TRUST: How Rome Built-and America is Building-A New World (2008) by Thomas F. Madden.   With so much negativity in the media today, we forget that there could be hope for a  more optimistic view.
"Does America face the same destiny endured by ancient Rome? Is the U.S. military overextended? Does the separation of church and state strengthen or weaken a geopolitical powerhouse? Is the United States just another Empire of Conquest being corrupted by its own power? Of late, it is not only historians who have been asking these questions."(

"Thomas Madden, an award-winning professor of history, now shows almost everything we thought we knew about Rome to be wrong, and revolutionizes our understanding of what a good world empire can be" ( Madden sees the United States as a possible 'Empire of Trust'. And "Madden is on a mission to get pundits, candidates, and... all of us to recognize this profound duty"(

Special thanks to Pearl, Joan H and Eric for these recommendations.