It used to be that the audience at a formal concert of classical music was expected to stay attentive, yet extremely and politely quiet during a classical performance. However, are audiences in the United States making new rules for a popular religious piece? Is this a fluke or a new tradition?
Keeping records about your home garden may sound like busy work or anal-retentive silliness, but I reached the point where I think it will help me. Find out why.
I really like watching Australian freshman Tyrese Proctor play guard for the Duke University men’s basketball team. He has strong passing skills, a real intuitive knowledge of the game, and a remarkable vibration on the court. Regard this as an introduction to him and a fan’s homage.
Joining the Dead Dads Club sounds hideous, doesn’t it? My buddy raced into the street to give me the biggest gal-friend hug possible. That hug told me that she knows what it is to be suddenly “dad-less.” And it isn't hideous, but it isn't easy or fun. My story . . .
A poem about grandparents and wishes.
A Sustainable Method (Climate Victory) gardener's first person account of growing an almond tree in the mid-Atlantic region. Her from-the-trenches perspectives add to what the "how-to columns" don't say. Ravenous neighborhood squirrels are part of her story.
Viral sensation Randy Rainbow wrote a memoir explaining how he became the court jester adored by Democrats, independents, and anyone sick of American political hypocrisy. No holds are barred in his delicious memoir.
Poems about the earthly leaders the Almighty would want.
Some beginning genealogy explorers, in their passion to find great-great-grandparents and long-gone relatives, make mistakes that are just plain silly. Here are seven tempting traps to avoid.
A spellbinding four-in-one helix of stories surrounding the lifelong passion of research scientist Suzanne Simard awaits you in her book Finding the Mother Tree- Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest. She describes her real searches and struggles with the same excitement as an Agatha Christie novel.
Cooking genealogy is fondly remembering family members and events as you prepare "their" foods. This is my Aunt Margie's beef vegetable soup. In the 20th century, common sense and frugality ruled housewives responsible for feeding a family.
A review of two online quizzes which calculate a person's "carbon footprint." Two short quizzes give a quick objective measurement of your lifestyle to tell you if you're a friend or a foe of climate, weather patterns and the temperature on planet Earth.
Maren Morgan combines genealogy with "cooking archaeology." She shares her recipe attempts and family lore about what a beloved aunt told her was the best breakfast on earth in the 1920s in central PA. Due to the lack of written records, intuitive trial and error played a large part in her quest.
Have vegetables all winter by following these steps for success with growing greens inside. There are surprising needs that you can meet by either replicating Mother Nature or by adjusting for the necessary absence of some features of the natural world.
Don’t let your Pennsylvania Election Board throw your vote in the trash. To have your mail in vote count, you MUST do these 4 things.
Fun and heart-touching moments during my morning volunteering to help more people vote in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Step by step instructions with screen shots on the easy process to get a mail-in ballot in PA for Fall 2020.
Establish your boundaries. Get some privacy. Fresh air, exercise, and your own oasis can be yours by planting bushes and flowers to make a fence.
A teacher advises: Ask your school these questions. Schools are accountable and should have plans for all of the possibilities during a pandemic.
Coronavirus has been here for over two years. It is harmful. Our licensed medical workers know how to make life livable during this serious health emergency. Too many Americans deliberately choose to ignore health guidelines. Here is why.
It is easy and inexpensive to view award-winning "Hamilton," the show about Alexander Hamilton told in 21st century language. Baby boomers and AARP eligible seniors can find out how in this article.
A story told to me by a friend of a friend of a friend. "Vacuum my face."
Discovering that I am a food addict during quarantine.
Improve on the PPE face mask video methods by following these tips. They make sewing the masks faster and easier. Thanks for stepping up to help during this crisis.
Today's climate crisis is frightening. These five songs will hearten the clear-sighted young people who educate legislators around the world.
A real life account of how I got solar panels for my Pennsylvania semi-detached house. True story from the trenches.
Everyone with land CAN help world food production. Abandon that boring mono-green grass. Allow nature to add violets, white clover, dandelions for the pollinators - bees, butterflies, moths, and the rest of the Creator's humble, tiny workers. Bee Lawns are trending. Plain grass is SO last century.
"No-till" is a green, eco-conscious gardening method for home and commercial growers. Learn about methods for new and existing plots, the scientific reasoning behind them, and the benefits for soil fertility and health.
How to make an eco-friendly, plant-filled rain garden for homeowners without power tools or plumbing alterations. Rainwater temporarily accumulates before being absorbed into the ground, allowing soil's natural filtration to work.
Rain gardens and climate victory gardens reduce air and water pollution and contribute to the conservation of water in soil. Read to learn more about these gardens and their purposes.
A way for the United States to get green quickly and have a good economy. It is not simple. It requires radical change. However, it is entirely realistic.
A Climate Victory Garden helps the soil, water quality, and the atmosphere. These 10 recommended practices will help your garden flourish. Keeping one (indoors or outdoors) is a practical way for anyone to contribute to reversing accumulated changes in the climate.
A Climate Victory Garden is a food garden grown for a family’s own consumption. You grow what you like, what you can, and will eat. It's a Climate Victory Garden because it reduces fuel use by shoppers and shippers, mitigating changes to climate. Also, more plants everywhere helps pollinators.
Forget the bread and milk. Here's what people age 50 and older need to stock for a stuck-inside Winter Storm weekend.
136 degrees Fahrenheit/ 57 degrees Celsius. Bad stuff for children and other living things.
Research from the year 2010 and later indicates these foods nurture our brains.
Yoga sun salutation exercise combined with prayers of thankfulness. A non-denominational prayer is given for each asana in the sequence.
Two extraordinary baseball stories at simple, readable level.
Choosing the right trees, bushes, and flowers to put into your yard can attract birds. Plants that feed their favorite bugs leads to simple "circle of life" gardening. This bug friendly plan brings birds to your yard easily!
True story of a talented stray kitten who charmed a neighborhood on his way to becoming a fantastic helper at Hopewell Furnace Historic Iron Plantation.
An inspiring description of many ways Christmas can be importantly fun.
This minor league ball team entertains fans without excessive advertising, overly long games, or ticket prices requiring a bank loan. The Lancaster Barnstormers baseball team is an American treasure.
A short story of green-ness in the face of global warming.
How to DIY blown-in insulation under a very low roof. Real advice from the experiences of a non-contractor homeowner.
Knowing a little about your car is a needed life skill, similar to basic computer ability. Here are the basics to watch so you can either fix simple situations or know to take your car for help.
Review of GREAT microbrewery with pub in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. It uses clever fly fishing theme for decor and menu. Local food specialties are used in bar food.
Recipe and technic for ridding your house of ants without endangering your pet cats.
Will Rogers excelled in almost every entertainment media of his day. This included starring in silent and sound films and being the top-paid movie actor of the 1930's.
Retirement communities, senior groups, rehabilitation facilities, activity directors: Feel free to use this list of better-known Protestant hymns for programs for American senior citizens.
Roberto Clemente's accomplishments are many. He contributed to MLB’s successful integration of Latinx players and performed charitable deeds without fanfare.
Descriptions of plot, ratings, awards, and more for 10 great baseball movies good for children and their families. Many promote faith in God or doing "the right thing."
Detailed instructions and pattern to make a small decorative garden flag.
Two iron furnace historic sites capture different eras of iron smelting in early American industrial growth. Photos, maps, and more. Easy visit from Hershey, Lancaster, Philadelphia, and Baltimore.
Got a kitten? Here is how to teach it to love sleeping in your lap for all time!
A small plot of grass does not require a monster-sized lawn mower. Learn about an eco-green, easy to use, inexpensive mower that will do the job!
For five years, every Sunday night at 5531 Germantown Avenue, Phila, a vigorous synthesis of jazz arranging, improvising & playing was the order of the evening at the LaRose Club Jam in Germantown.
Candy shops near Lebanon are reviewed. Wertz Candies combines charm, tradition, and homemade treats; the Van Winkles make opera fudge in their home; Smith's Candies makes nothing but sells everything.
Ideas on what gifts to give cat lovers and to include in a raffle baskets which will appeal to cat owners.
A survey of five beer distributors in or pretty danged close to the city of Lebanon, PA. Hours, addresses, pix, and more.
If you want luminaries for a holiday, here are instructions and a cute kitten pattern. It can even be done by children with adult help. Includes 9 pictures and real-life experience tips. Allow 2 days from start to finish.
Fix the cold bathtub problem! Directions and step-by-step photo guide for klutzy homeowners on how to put insulation around an existing cold bathtub. Check to see if you have the kind of tub and bathroom set-up to do this process.
Do you have water in the basement due to cracks and small holes in the foundation or walls? Try this DIY repair by a non-construction-worker homeowner gal.
This article explores great thrift stores along Route 422 in Lebanon, PA. Read on for more valuable info including addresses, phone numbers, hours, and maps.
Three easy recipes with only 3 ingredients for Valentine's Day salads: Green and Red Potato salad, Strawberry-Green salad, and Extra Cherries Fruit salad. 20 photos.
This is a description of a visit to an old-fashioned small Pennsylvania pretzel bakery and shop tucked into a residential neighborhood in a small town. It does not advertise, but the locals flock there. This article includes 14 photos.
Marches, movie medleys, and other audience pleasing tunes for a level 3 concert band are described.
The “Puppy Bowl” is an annual television program aired on the afternoon of American professional football’s SuperBowl game. Puppies romp on a small field as comedian commentators and referees pretend their frolicking movements are football maneuvers. It is a brilliant comic farce of professional...
Indoor cat owner's tried and true method for DIY claw trimming is explained with diagrams.
A charity that givs transportation to children in third world areas and encourages all sorts of self-directed development for them.
For families in Newtown, Connecticut; Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania; Norway, the Middle East, Vietnam, everywhere… Blessed are You, O LORD, our God, who brings forth goodness on the earth. Hear me and hold me, O...
This is a homeowner's guide to using Borax on moldy wooden-house structural parts (to kill mold roots). Photos are included.
Flooded houses breed mold and fungus requiring unusual ways, not your usual cleaning, to eliminate. I've been there: living in a water-damaged house and tackling it DIY with little money. Here's what I learned the hard way and now recommend for severe mold problems in a home. Learn from my mistakes!
This easy and quick fudge takes less than 15 minutes to make and uses only one burner on the stove. It's delicious, too!
How bathing a cat works, using the vet recommended Blue Dawn dish washing liquid.
During WWII, the Nazis created a “sham” concentration camp, Terezin, to deceive the rest of the world into believing that the Reich concentration camps were tolerable refuges for displaced Jews. Three levels of reality existed: daily work and malnutrition, the showcased happy children and workers...
Detailed instructions and pattern for ladybug costume for a kitten or teacup puppy. 16 photos and additional instructions for adjusting the size if your pet has a growth spurt before the holiday.
No-holds barred description of how to color your hair at home with hints from the author based on experience.
Kittens have teething & chewing needs similar to puppies. Tips are given on what to expect, how to help, & how to train your kitten so she does NOT learn bad habits, such as routinely biting humans.
Find some easy step-by-step instructions for kids and learn how to make ghosts to hang outside from trees or the front porch at Halloween. Very few supplies are needed. 14 photos and 2 short videos are included.
How to combine veggie proteins in meals to make complete proteins (as in Diet for a Small Planet) using redneck favorites. Loosen up and laugh!
Make a cat viewing platform at your window several feet above the sill and not light-blocking.
First shots that a 6- to 8-week old kitten needs. Also, a description of tests that are advisable if the kitten comes from unknown sources.
Explanation of mead, a wine made from fermented honey. It is gaining popularity in Pennsylvania.
Review of Lancaster County, PA microbreweries with pubs including maps, phone numbers, websites.
Step-by-step DIY How-to instructions to make a lightly stuffed ornament for the Christmas tree using Christmas colors or themed fabric. Many photos.
Easy instructions on how to make a pine cone Christmas ornament. The homemade touch makes it precious and children may want to give it a try. Inexpensive supplies are used.
The Bible story of Esther has many positives for children: a female heroine, a wedding, kings and queens, party food, raucous noise, and an ending with the good guys winning. It can be used during any unit on the Bible, the Old Testament, and in Vacation Bible School.
As cats age, one's beliefs about whether or not to take extraordinary measures may be put to the test.
Like all house cats, ours seek out cuddly nooks to protect them, without permitting intrusion. Each cat appears quite content and pleased as he surreptitiously (in his own mind) surveys the world from his Cat Cave. Both commercial climbing trees and creative locations do the job. And, they are...
If your land is frozen from the topsoil down about a foot in January, “garden work” may not make sense. However, if you resemble me in my gardening habits, there is always work to be done. Sadly, climate crisis has made my land soft and pliable all year round. It's frightening.
Two certainties in the mail for the beginning of a year are tax forms and gardening catalogues. The five best natural /organic companies are described.
Easy instructions with photo guide for how to make Pennsylvania Great Depression–era black walnut cookies. This was my grandmother's specialty, and our family still bakes these for Christmas.
Meatloaf is the main dish for Seinfeld's December Festivus holiday. For varying dietary needs and preferences, this is a quick and easy way to make 2 different meatloaves with minimal work.
Mouse ornaments are popular for Christmas trees. Learn how to complete this simple project in just one day (plus another day for drying). This craft is suitable for children of elementary-school age and older with adult supervision.
How a group of adults and kids can make Christmas tree ornaments from wooden clothespins and a few other supplies. Great for family, religious education class, craft group.
How to put a larger platform top on a cat tower or condo. This Do It Yourself project takes less than a day and is no cost if you have carpet remnants & a good board. Step by step instructions and 17 photos are included.
Step-by-step instructions with 14 photos for how to make a simple small Christmas stocking from fabric scraps. Sewing machine is used. DIY craft for adults & children with basic sewing experience.
A reproducible family Protestant Advent ceremony which is short and child-friendly to be used in the home. Adapted for kindergarten through primary grade kids. Provides list of supplies, script, and suggested songs. Family Advent ceremonies are used for the 4 Sundays before December 25th. Held in...
I am cultivating a sense of blessed abundance. My blessings are clear to me. I have grand people in my life who genuinely love me. I love them back, and that is a great blessing – the ability to give love. I trust the Universal Spirit to continue my blessings and abundance as I practice gratitude.
I was falling dangerously, but it felt like in slow motion. As I lay crumpled but conscious, I replayed the event over & over in my mind. I was, and am, fully confidence that I had just interacted with my own Guardian Angel. And, that felt grand!
Directions with 19 photos. Kids age 3 to 12 can make a pine cone turkey as a place card for the formal Thanksgiving dinner table. Easy and fast - it can be completed in under 30 minutes. Adults will love the results and the children contribute to the event and stay out of the adults' hair. Win-win!
Ways to get either a totally free turkey meal, a very low costs one, or ideas (common sense) for keeping costs down for the big Thanksgiving feast.
Since an outdoor shed costs several hundred dollars to replace, it would be foolhardy to allow it to deteriorate. Life will be better if you can make the shed last as long as possible. Here are 2 ways.
Author reviews 3 full-length flicks from the Baby Boomers' younger days whose plots either involve Thanksgiving or occur at Thanksgiving. Miracle on 34th Street, Holiday Inn, and Alice's Restaurant are recommended for your Thanksgiving entertainment.
How we can sneak other cultures’ winter holiday symbols into a few pockets of American Middle-Class-Protestant-Mainstream-White-Bread-Land.
The play, Bronzeville, captures the consequences of the WWII displacement and the opportunities and challenges for other second-class Americans during this time of shame in America. At this time, it has been performed only on the West Coast, but we hops it makes its way across the country soon.
Five flicks from “baby boomers' era” involving Halloween. They are films from our lifetimes produced for the general public.Today these family-friendly movies all would be rated G. All of them would be fun to share with grandkids. However, children are not necessary to enjoy them one more time.
In cool Halloween and dark fall, here are two books which have enough of the mystery of the autumn combined with a happy ending, that it meets your reading needs for preschoolers and early elementary children.
Step-by-step guide with 12 photos and diagrams for making costumes for a cat (or small dog.) No sewing is required. Crafters probably have all the materials at hand so no cost is involved. You can adapt these 3 patterns for all sorts of costume ideas by your choice of colors, materials, and bling.
The author combines 2 perspectives on grieving to comfort those adjusting to a major, unhappy change. They are the Kubler-Ross model of five stages of grieving, and the "new normal" philosophy.
Decluttering, cleaning, and organizing are pillars of the KonMari method and Black Hat Feng Shui. In a garage, you will get “two-fer” credit when you start cleaning and grouping your things! Photos of the good and the not so good included.
How to experience the real life of Chinese people in Yunnan province with a native multilingual tour guide. The scenery is wild and unspoiled and the Old Town of Lijiang is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Public apple picking at rock-bottom costs occurs every fall at a National Park Service historic site in the southeastern Pennsylvania. For $1 a pound, visitors may pick heirloom apples the old-fashioned way at Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site near Elverson, PA.
History and mission of the National Weather Service: one of the efficient and useful agencies in the federal government. This agency has saved lives and property since 1870.
This simple recipe for air-dried egg and white flour noodles made from scratch traces back to the Great Depression and the author's Altoona, Pennsylvania, grandmother. Many photos are included.
This is the not-to-do guide for a newbie’s leap into sunflower food production.
Red Green, Canadian Handyman, is a man who knows the value of duct tape. Such is his genius that there is no equipment problem which he CANNOT fix with duct tape. In his spirit, I lightheartedly offer my Red Green style laptop computer cooler.
3 ways to cool your house and none of them cost you money.
Pulling out the old instrument and shaking up those brain cells a bit, joking around with buddies, giving pleasure to audiences, and making some pretty good music – “A community band is a lot like Heaven,” admits one of the band’s past presidents. Learn about the Exeter (PA) Community Band.
The true story of Deputy Sheriff K-9 dog Jynx, who alerted a police task force to the location of a sniper, and tried to pull his wounded partner to safety. June 29, 2011 in Berks County, PA.
Review of the excellent, professional U.S. Army Jazz Ambassadors traveling band.
A photo-filled example of the gardens of a homeowner growing vegetables and flowers combined together in her front yard. Yes, the various foliage and shapes work wonderfully! 15 photos.
Gardeners - Nativeseeds.org -SEARCH offers heirloom seeds especially suitable for the arid southwest USA and Northwest Mexico through its on-line catalogue and its retail store in Tucson, AZ.
Step-by-step instruction with photos on how children elementary age and older can make a corn husk doll from natural materials (sometimes with a little help.) Good summer camp activity or rainy day craft. Very simple supplies used and the author's personal experience tips are included.
The perennial flower Bee Balm (monarda) supports pollinator bees and is very easy to grow. It tolerates all sorts of conditions, including partial sun and dry soil. You can eat its leaves and flowers in salads. Indigenous peoples and current Plain Sect (Amish) dry the leaves for tea.
Pete Souders of Ortlieb's Jazzhaus in North Philly: an old fart axe player finally records what his horn has to say. Thank GOD we didn't lose him with all his music still in him!
How children catch lightning bugs without harming them.
Humorous parody of Dante's levels of Purgatory as it applies to the home gardener.
Clotheslines are eco, green, cool tools for drying laundry. They work inside and out. With the outside clothesline you benefit from solar energy and invite adventure. Very funny possibilities, but we still want you to go green and use clotheslines to dry your clothes - even in the face of risks.
Extremely true story of a frisky newly adopted cat breaking into the catnip and throwing an bacchanalian party for his fellow housecats.
During the 3-day weekend commemorating World War II at the air museum at Reading, Pennsylvania's airport, it is always June of 1944. This celebration is a re-enactor's paradise, bringing in guests and participants from all over the country.
Commingling flowers and vegetables in the same plot is easy and effective. Also, it works in the front, side, and back yards.
Humorous account of a gardener with rocky soil.
How-to instructions for making an artistic wooden tripod as a garden accent - at low to no cost.
Very easy way to tune a djembe using a vice grip tool. YouTube video included in article.
What do you mean I shouldn't be on the table? Hilarious account of what we did and didn’t do (but should have) when a five-pound bundle of fluff dropped into our lives. We live in a county which was heavily Pennsylvania-German for centuries. ...
Boomer-age females in the USA were subjected to constant messages that the “best” hair color for a female is blonde.
This is a step-by-step guide with photos for dyeing hard-boiled eggs in the shell. This is the old-fashioned method that was used before egg dyeing kits existed. The traditional smell of vinegar and boiling water is a feature of this all-generation family bonding activity.
The Jewish observance of Passover reflects the belief that the Jews’ glass of happiness cannot be full if others had to suffer. This is compassion which values all people.
Single woman traveled alone to the SAFE state capitol of Yucatan, Mexico. It is close to the United States, a great vacation destination and possible place to retire.
I am a Quaker. I helped set up the exhibit "Eyes Wide Open - The human cost of War" when it came to Independence Hall in Philadelphia in 2005. This is my account.
Pediatric cancer. Hospitals can be scary to children. There is a charity which provides children with cancer a "non-hospital" pillowcase. It is http://caseforsmiles.org (formerly ConKerrCancer.org.) Having a distinctive, fun pillowcase let's a child think, “I am ME, not my disease.”
Easy recipe for kids ages 2–8 to make chocolate peanut butter oatmeal cookies. No baking is required, though the boiling of some ingredients in the microwave or on your stovetop is needed.
Review of children's picture book: Cowlick! by Christin Ditchfield and illustrated by Rosalind Beardshaw. A super read aloud book with predictable rhymes. Great fun for Emerging Reading skills.
I believe that God, Jesus, Yahweh, whatever name you like laughs. And likes to laugh. But would the Deity be tickled by this photo or is it blasphemy?
One campaign volunteer helps get out the vote in a swing state in the historic 2008 Presidential election.
Curious George has nothing on "Grandpa," a loveable character who enjoys life but seems to find trouble --- EASILY. Please help by sending in illustrations for the pages.
The peaceful, artsy Caribbean island of St. Thomas, USVI, retains the feel of its Danish colonial days in many places. The Royal Dane Mall and an historic synagogue are highly recommended tourist attractions.
Houseboats is a delightful activity Children use couch cushions like building blocks to make a pretend boat. to adventure in. This is hands-on physics. Blankets, pillows, and a lot of role playing and imagination make it complete. Acting and negotiating contribute to social development.
A drum circle is a group of people dropping in to an announced meeting place to play African and middle-eastern hand drums, shakers, and other percussion items. Drum circles are open, welcoming, and non-judgmental. The music is always improvised based on the sounds each person adds to the mix.
Recipe for a savory fried kugel from Eastern Europe. Exquisite flavors come from the simple blending of just four ingredients. The secret is in the process. Many photos are provided to demonstrate how to make this fried noodle pudding often used for Jewish holy days and shabbat.
Here is an inexpensive way to make play-dough at home with items already in the kitchen. It must be cooked briefly. When the kids are done playing with it, it is safe to put in a composting bin.
As people approach later years, they can and are taking a much more aggressive attitude in maintaining mental sharpness. Three activities are recommended: joining a music group, joining an exercise group, and having regular contact with persons in their twenties.
Teacher-recommended indoor activities using high amounts of imagination and low- to no-cost supplies.
As early as age six-months, good parents must start teaching a child the meaning of "no" and "yes." The sooner a child learns the world has limits, the easier (relatively speaking) it will be to live with that precious little one.
Preschoolers learn through their senses. The sense of touch is an extremely important tool for understanding their world and should be encouraged safely. Create a balance between cleanliness, neatness, responsibility, and learning. Children from birth to age 6 need chances to make messes.
Two teacher-created games for elementary age children you can use at home.