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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

A New Beginning

 "Let us all hope that the dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon pass away and the deep fog of misunderstanding will be lifted from our fear-drenched communities, and in some not too distant tomorrow the radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our great nation with all their scintillating beauty.

"I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a 'thing-oriented' society to a 'person-oriented' society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important that people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered."

"These are the times for real choices and not false ones. We are at the moment when our lives must be placed on the line if our nation is to survive its own folly."

—Martin Luther King, Jr.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Free Pattern - Crocheted Bookmark

Here's a quick pattern for a crocheted bookmark. I used size 10 cotton crochet thread and a size 1.25 mm aluminum crochet hook.

ROW 1 - Chain 6. Join with a slip stitch in the first chain to form a ring. 

ROW 2 - Chain 3 (counts as first double crochet). Work 19 double crochets (DC) in ring. Join at top of the chain 3. Turn.

ROW 3 - Chain 4 (counts as first DC and chain 1). Work one DC and chain 1 in each stitch. Join in 3rd stitch of the chain 4. Turn

ROW 4 - Slip stitch to the first chain 1 space. Chain 3. Work DC in same space, chain 2, and work 2 more DC in same space. *Skip next chain 1 space. Work cluster of 2 DC, chain 2, and 2 DC in next space. Work from * around. Join in top of chain 3. Turn.

ROW 5 - Slip stitch to first chain 2 space. SC in chain 2 space. *Work 3 DC in same chain 2 space. Chain 2. Slip stitch in base of the chain 2 to form a picot. Work 3 more DC in the base chain 2 space. Single crochet in between the clusters in the row below (1 crown completed). Work from * around. Join with slip stitch.

To finish, weave in ends. Thread an 18-inch piece of ribbon through the space between two crowns. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

A Healthier Potato Salad

Despite the weather (I wonder if the rain will EVER stop!), I am determined to create a summer-like dinner for my family this evening. 

On the menu are oven-barbequed chicken tenders, corn on the cob, some canned baked beans, a dried cranberry coleslaw, and a lighter and brighter potato salad.

I love my Mom's traditional potato salad, with russet potatoes (that become a bit soft when cooked and lend to the creaminess of the salad), dill pickle, hard cooked eggs, celery, mayonnaise, and (here is the secret ingredient!) finely minced radishes. But I wanted to create something a bit lighter this evening. So I used Yukon gold potatoes (a less starchy potato that remains firm when cooked), some fresh herbs, and an acidic dressing rather than mayonnaise.

  • 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, minced
  1. Place potatoes in large pot with lid. Cover with water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn heat to low and simmer until potatoes are tender (a sharp knife inserted in the middle of a potato will enter easily).
  1. Drain the potatoes and place on chopping board. Let sit a few minutes until cool enough to handle.
  1. Remove the skins from the potatoes. They should slip off easily with the tip of a knife. Chop the potatoes and place in a large bowl.
  1. Whisk together the lemon zest, dry mustard, olive oil, and lemon juice. Drizzle over the still warm potatoes. Toss to coat. Add salt and pepper and toss again.
  1. Just before serving stir in chopped parsley. Salad can be served chilled or at room temperature.
What makes this recipe work?
  • Use the proper potato—Mom always used russet (Idaho) potatoes. Russets are wonderful baked or used in casseroles; their low-moisture high-starch flesh is the perfect foil for cream and butter. But cook a moment too long and they make horrible potato salad. A better choice is the Yukon gold. With their rich, buttery flavor and a moist, creamy texture they make exceptionally good mashed potatoes, French fries, and potato salad. Their medium starch content makes them a good all-purpose potato suitable for both boiling and baking.
  • Shake the salt—High blood pressure is at epidemic levels in the United States and our passion for sodium-laden fast-foods and processed foods is a major contributor to the problem. How do you add flavor to your foods without using the salt shaker? In this recipe, lemon zest and lemon juice provide a tang and brightness without the addition of sodium.
  • Parsley is more than just a pretty face—This ubiquitous garnish on dinner plates is so much more than a decorative afterthought. Parsley is a nutritional powerhouse--a source of vitamins C, K, and is rich in anti-oxidants.

    The two most popular types of parsley are curly parsley and Italian flat leaf parsley. The Italian variety is more fragrant and less bitter than the curly variety. When shopping for parsley select a bunch that is deep green in color and looks fresh and crisp. Keep your fresh parsley in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. Don't wash it when you bring it home. It is highly fragile and should be washed just before using. The best way to clean it is just like you would spinach. Place it in a bowl of cold water and swish it around with your hands. This will allow any sand or dirt to dislodge. Remove the leaves from the water, empty the bowl, refill it with clean water and repeat this process until no dirt remains in the water.

Saturday, January 9, 2021

The Legacy of "45"


“A lie told often enough becomes the truth.” Vladimir Lenin

"No, mail ballots, they cheat. OK, people cheat.  Mail ballots are a very dangerous thing for this country because they are cheaters." —Donald Trump, April 8, 2020

“There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent.

"It will rob mail boxes, ballots will be forged & even illegally printed out & fraudulently signed.

The Governor of California is sending Ballots to millions of people, anyone.”


Because  of MAIL-IN-BALLOTS, 2020 will be the most RIGGED Election in our nations history onless this stupidity is ended. 

We voted during World War One & World War Two with no problem, 
but now they are using Covid in order to cheat by using Mail-Ins!”

“There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent.

Mail boxes will be robbed, ballots will be forged & even illegally printed out & fraudulently signed.

“The Democrats know the 2020 Election will be a fraudulent mess. 
Will maybe never know who won!”


“The road to tyranny, we must never forget, 
begins with the destruction of the truth.” Bill Clinton

On January 6, 2021 the unthinkable happened; bullets and tear gas filled our Nation’s capital building. Hundreds of rioters encouraged by President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol crashing through police lines to lay siege to the building and force a halt to the constitutional process of certifying the Electoral College count after the Nov. 3 presidential election. Since April, 2020 President Trump has stated more than 2,000 times that vote fraud will be widespread and rampant.

“Make the lie big. Make it simple. Keep saying it, 
and eventually, people will believe it.” Adolph Hitler

Trump lost both the popular vote and the Electoral College. Nevertheless, he has refused to acknowledge his loss to Biden, and his falsehoods about election fraud have only escalated. He spent several days encouraging supporters to gather in D.C. on January 6. He encouraged disruptions of Wednesday’s vote in hopes of delaying the certification of his loss and called on Pence to reject the legitimacy of state electors–a power the vice president does not have under the Constitution.

The night before the riot, Trump wrote on Twitter that Washington would be 

“inundated with people who don’t want to see an election victory stolen by emboldened Radical Left Democrats.”
“Our Country has had enough, they won’t take it anymore! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

In a speech to the crowd outside the White House on Wednesday morning, he encouraged them to march toward the Capitol and told them that he would be with them. As he stood behind the shield of bullet-proof glass he said 

“Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on democracy, and after this, we’re going to walk down – and I’ll be there with you – we’re going to walk down to the Capitol, and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women.”

“And we’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them, because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. 

You have to show strength.”

After several hours of chaos, Mr. Trump posted a video on Facebook--his advisors telling him that he needed to do more than issue Tweets--he needed to address the rioters. There was no strongly worded reproach. 

“We have to have peace. We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt. It’s a very tough period of time, there’s never been a time like this where such a thing happened, where they could take it away from all of us. From me, from you, from our country. This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people. We have to have peace. So go home, we love you, you’re very special. You’ve seen what happens, you’ve seen the way others are treated that are so bad and so evil. I know how you feel, but go home and go home in peace.” 
We love you? You're special? This was not a peaceful protest. These were insurrectionists, domestic terrorists, criminals. They entered with assault rifles, pipes, clubs, and Molotov cocktails. They carried zip ties suggesting that they planned to take hostages.

 An assessment of the damage and the cost for repairs has yet to be calculated. Glass was broken, doors and furniture smashed, and fires were set. There is a massive amount of debris. A bust of former President Zachary Taylor was splashed with red paint; a display honoring the late John Lewis was destroyed. Those are the material losses. As of this writing, five people have died.

(By the way, in case you are wondering who will pay for this, Federal agencies do not carry insurance so we, the taxpayers, will be on the hook for the damage.)

What were your feelings when you saw this event unfolding? To me it seemed surreal, like an over-the-top action movie, not reality. I was saddened, sickened, and angry, but I was not surprised. This was not a spontaneous event; it's been in the works for the past four years. This unsuccessful coup (and let's call it what it was) is precisely what Donald Trump is; it represents his core values and those of his followers. 

The damage to the capitol will be repaired in a year or two, but the damage to the fabric of who we are as a Nation—how long will that take?

"Leaders, true leaders, take responsibility for the success of the team, and understand that they must also take responsibility for the failure." Donald Trump, 2013