Friday, April 29, 2005

New Exercise

Just came across this exercise suggested for seniors, to build muscle strength in the arms and shoulders. It seemed so easy I thought I'd pass it on to some of my older friends. The article suggested doing it three days a week.

Begin by standing on a comfortable surface, where you have plenty of room at each side. With a 5-LB. potato sack in each hand, extend your arms straight out from your sides, and hold them there as long as you can. Try to reach a full minute, then relax.

Each day, you'll find that you can hold this position for just a bit longer. After a couple of weeks, move up to 10-lb. potato sacks, then50-lb. potato sacks, and eventually try to lift a 100-lb. potato sack in each hand and hold your arms out straight for more than a full minute.

After you feel confident at that level, put a potato in each of the sacks.


Thursday, April 28, 2005

Words of Wisdom

Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless. ~ Mother Teresa

Reach high, for stars lie hidden in your soul. Dream deep, for every dream precedes the goal. ~ Unknown

Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person is a little like expecting the bull not to attack you because you are a vegetarian. ~ Dennis Wholey

Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment. ~ Ben Franklin

Children today are tyrants. They contradict their parents, gobble their food and tyrannize their teachers. ~ Socrates

What are the three words guaranteed to humiliate men everywhere? . . .'Hold my purse.' ~ Francois Morency

Plenty of people miss their share of happiness. Not because they never found it, but because they didn't stop to enjoy it. ~ William Feather

Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way. ~ Unknown


Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Dear Friends,

I have just read and signed the petition: "Protect Gorillas & Pandas! Urge Your Senator to Co-Sponsor the Climate Stewardship Act!"

We are trying to reach 10000 signatures, and we need YOUR HELP! Please help by signing this petition. It takes 30 seconds and will really help.

Please follow this link:

Once you have signed, help even more, by telling your friends and family to sign as well!

Thank you!


Monday, April 25, 2005

Monday Morning Mayhem

Your computer screen may get a little dirty from time to time. This links to an application that automatically cleans your monitor screen.


Friday, April 22, 2005

Earth Day

O Earth, you are surpassing fair.
From out your store we're daily fed,
We breathe your life-supporting air
and drink the water that you shed...

Has evolution been in vain
that life should perish ere its prime?
Or will we from our greed refrain
and save our planet while there's time?

~ The Rev. John Andrew Storey (1935 - 1998)


Thursday, April 21, 2005

This is very scary...

Please send this out to all your family and friends, so they are aware of their surroundings! Especially to people with kids.


You will be amazed with how many are living in your area, so please be aware.

Just click the link and type ONLY your ZIP code.

I typed in my zip code and 38 names came up, one of them lives not too far from me! For now on, I'm going to keep a close eye on my daughter and alert the other parents with small children.


Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Earth Day Virtual March

Join the March!

This effort cannot succeed without your important help. It will only take a few minutes of your time. Your participation in the Earth Day Virtual March will demonstrate to your elected representatives that they should be working to protect wildlife, its habitat and the environment we share, not casting votes to help special interests.You won't have to come to Washington. Or stand in the rain. Just join the virtual march and on Earth Day, we'll send your message to your Senators about their recent Senate vote and urge them to keep the Arctic National Wildife Refuge off limits to destructive oil drilling for good.

Together we can send a powerful message to the politiciansthat they cannot ignore.

March for Earth Day:

Thank you!


Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Tuesday Thought

I have witnessed the softening of the hardest of hearts by a simple smile. ~ Goldie Hawn


Monday, April 18, 2005

Courage does not always roar. Sometimes, it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow". ~ Anonymous


Friday, April 15, 2005

One cat just leads to another. ~ Ernest Hemmingway

Here's another post from July, 2004. Now that we are entering the "kitten season" I thought this was a good time to run this again.

My friend Jane is a volunteer for TAILS Humane Society in DeKalb, Illinois. She does everything from hands-on interactions with the animals to fundraising. She fosters kittens until they are old enough to be adopted. She is also involved in (TNR) Trap-Neuter-Return, an effective, internationally recognized program to reduce, and eventually eliminate, feral cat colonies.

During the "kitten season" shelters are overwhelmed with kittens. The season comes between May and September, with peak months for kitten births in June, July and August. During these months, the number of kittens and pregnant cats at shelters multiplies. Shelters accepts as many animals as it possibly can.

Jane is deeply committed and speaks to me often about this problem. For every litter that comes into the shelter there's two or three that don't make it to the shelter, they are dumped at farms, parks, homes or in the wild. These kittens face the dangers of other wildlife, vehicles, bad weather and exposure to viruses their immune systems can't handle. If they survive to adulthood, they will likely mate, creating more homeless animals.

The problem has an easy solution: have pets spayed or neutered.

A common reason people don't get their pets fixed is because they claim it’s too expensive. There are veterinarian clinics that offer low cost spaying or neutering, information that is easily obtained from a local shelter, the humane society or Love that Cat website which provides a great listing.



Thursday, April 14, 2005

On July 30, 2004 I posted a piece on feral cats. Now that La Crosse firefighter Mark Smith wants Wisconsin to declare free-roaming wild cats (that's any domestic cat that isn’t under the owner’s direct control or any cat without a collar) an unprotected species, just like skunks or gophers. Anyone with a small-game license could shoot the cats at will I have decided to post this again.

A Cat’s Prayer

I ask for the privilege of not being born...not to be born until you can assure me of a home and a master to protect me, and the right to live as long as I am physically able to enjoy life...not to be born until my body is precious and men have ceased to exploit it because it is cheap and plentiful. ~ Author Unknown

You have probably seen them in your neighborhood, gathered around dumpsters, in parking lots, in parks, trying to cross busy streets -- they are homeless cats who flee from humans. They are domestic cats, referred to as "feral," the result of both the failure to spay/neuter and cat abandonment. Ferals are erroneously labeled as "wild cats." A mountain lion is a wild cat, a feral cat is a homeless domestic cat.

A group of feral cats living together in one area is called a "colony." Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) is an effective, internationally recognized program to reduce, and eventually eliminate, feral cat colonies. Cats are trapped, vaccinated, spayed/neutered, and returned to their original location. In a TNR program, a feral cat colony caretaker, who is usually a volunteer rescue worker, feeds the cats on a regular basis and brings them to a veterinarian if they require medical assistance. The resultant group of cats, including any new cats entering the caretaker's sphere, is known as a managed feral cat colony. This program is also referred to as TAR (Trap-Alter-Return). Along with TNR, caregivers promote public education about society's responsibility to our community and to the domestic animals we have created.

The safest place for domestic cats is indoors; cats who are lucky enough to have a home should be kept strictly inside. However, because of the overpopulation crisis, there are not enough available homes. The next best thing for feral domestic cats born outdoors is a managed colony where food, water, shelter, and medical care are consistently provided.

Here are some things that you can do:
* Become involved with feral cat rescue.
* Help educate your community -- become a spokesperson for ferals.
* Make sure all cats in your care are spayed or neutered.
* Support TNR efforts in your community. The biggest obstacle for most caregivers is fighting with hostile neighbors.
* Always choose to adopt, rather than purchase, companion animals.* Ask your shelter to implement a feral cat program based on Trap-Neuter-Return.
* The humane management and reduction of feral cat populations requires a community’s effort. Get involved. Help end the suffering of these cats and prevent future litters. If you cannot do it on your own, volunteer with a local feral cat rescue organization. Remember: Do not attempt to handle or trap a homeless cat without first consulting with an experienced rescuer.
* If you are unable to help feral cats in your area, please seek assistance from a rescue group or individual rescuer. Ignoring homeless animals is precisely what perpetuates the problem.


Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Keep Domestic Cats in Wisconsin From Being Fair Game

Ever occur to you why some of us can be this much concerned with animals suffering? Because government is not. Why not? Animals don't vote. ~ Paul Harvey

Dear Friends,

I have just read and signed the petition: "Keep Domestic Cats in Wisconsin From Being Fair Game"

We are trying to reach 5000 signatures, and we need YOUR HELP! Please help by signing this petition. It takes 30 seconds and will really help.

Please follow this link:

Once you have signed, help even more, by telling your friends and family to sign as well!

Thank you!


Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Wisconsin Considers Legalizing Cat Hunting

When a man wantonly destroys one of the works of man we call him a vandal. When he destroys one of the works of god we call him a sportsman. ~Joseph Wood Krutch

MADISON, Wis. (April 12) - Feline lovers holding pictures of cats, clutching stuffed animals and wearing whiskers faced-off against hundreds of hunters at meetings around Wisconsin to voice their opinion on whether to legalize cat hunting.

Residents in 72 counties were asked whether free-roaming cats - including any domestic cat that isn’t under the owner’s direct control or any cat without a collar - should be listed as an unprotected species. If listed as so, the cats could be hunted.

The proposal was one of several dozen included in a spring vote on hunting and fishing issues held by the Wisconsin Conservation Congress. The results, only advisory, get forwarded to the state Natural Resources Board.

Statewide results were expected Tuesday.

La Crosse firefighter Mark Smith, 48, helped spearhead the cat-hunting proposal. He wants Wisconsin to declare free-roaming wild cats an unprotected species, just like skunks or gophers. Anyone with a small-game license could shoot the cats at will.

At least two other upper Midwestern states, South Dakota and Minnesota, allow wild cats to be shot - and have for decades. Minnesota defines a wild, or feral, cat as one with no collar that does not show friendly behavior, said Kevin Kyle with that state’s Department of Natural Resources.

Every year in Wisconsin alone, an estimated 2 million wild cats kill 47 million to 139 million songbirds, according to state officials. Despite the astounding numbers, Smith’s plan have met with fierce opposition from cat lovers.
Critics of Smith’s idea organized Wisconsin Cat-Action Team and developed a Web site - Some argue it is better to trap wild cats, spay or neuter them, before releasing them.
In Madison, about 1,200 people attended the Monday evening meeting at the Alliant Center, more than the 250 or so in a typical year, but less than the 3,000 or so who took part in the 2000 over whether to allow hunters to shoot mourning doves.

One of the attendees was Katy Francis, who wore cat ears, whiskers, a cat nose and a shirt read, "Too Cute to Kill." For Francis, "The cat hunting thing brought me out because it’s extreme."

From The Associated Press


Monday, April 11, 2005


What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal. ~ Albert Pike


Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Carrot, Egg and Coffee

A carrot, an egg and a cup of coffee...You will never look at a cup of coffee the same way again.

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved, a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word. In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.

Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me, what do you see?"

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.

Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard boiled egg. Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma. The daughter then asked, "What does it mean, mother?"

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity ... boiling water. Each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" she asked her daughter. "When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?"

Think of this: Which am I?

Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level?

How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

My wish for you: May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human and enough hope to make you happy.


Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. ~ Maya Angelou


Monday, April 04, 2005

Clean out your mental closet

Remember when you last cleaned out your clothes closet? It was tough at first, but afterwards you felt great. You got rid of those impulse buys that never worked and retired those too-tight jeans that you knew you would never fit into again.

Remember how you felt? No guilt or regret, just wonderfully cleansed and organized.

A mental clean-out is even more effective. It’s time to get rid of the bad and the ugly. Throw out all you old beliefs, memories, limitations, guilt, fears, doubts, and images that are no longer serving you. Make room in your mental closet for all the good life has to offer.

When you start afresh with an open and positive mind, you’ll instantly feel energized and uplifted because all the negativity is gone. Try it!

From Meditations for Women


Sunday, April 03, 2005

No-Parking Zone

A minister parked his car in a no-parking zone in a large city because he was short of time and couldn't find a space with a meter. So he put a note under the windshield wiper that read: "I have circled the block 10 times. If I don't park here, I'll miss my appointment. FORGIVE US OUR TRESPASSES.

When he returned, he found a citation from a police officer along with this note: "I've circled this block for 10 years. If I don't give you a ticket, I'll lose my job. LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION."


Friday, April 01, 2005

Cleanse the clutter!

Tired of all the junk in your life? If you often find yourself cleaning up clutter or looking for more space in the closet to shove all your stuff in, it might be time to give a wholehearted effort to cleaning all the junk that’s collected over the years. Spend a little time this weekend going through your home and you might realize that most of what fills your drawers is just taking up space. Once your living space is clutter-free and simplified you may find your mind is more relaxed and comfortable too.

That's my goal this weekend!