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Thursday, 17 April 2014

3212 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"I knew when my career was over. In 1965 my baseball card came out with no picture."Bob Uecker



I have suspected for a long time that the commercials last longer now on TV than they used to. I have proof. I have fallen in love with the AntennaTV cable channel that is filled with 30 minute sitcoms from the 50s through the 70s. On average the beginning, middle and end commercials in a 30 minute show total about 3 minutes. The 30 minute sitcom "Mike and Molly" had 6 and a half minutes of commercials. Sometime there are so many different ads during the mid show break that I forget what show I am watching.


I have received many emails over the past few days breathlessly expressing either indignation at the "large" amount that is dispersed as "welfare" in the states and some explaining how the numbers are lying and the recipients are not really received such huge dollops of the public money. Both the liberals and conservatives are ignoring the "tragedy" of welfare. The column for total welfare is misleading, I'll bet, as few of the recipients access all the available sources of money. However it does adequately estimate the power of welfare money to substitute for wages.


STATETotal
Potential
Welfare
Equivalent
Pretax
Wages
Alabama2663823310 
Alaska2927526400 
Arizona2136415320 
Arkansas1742312230 
California3528737160 
Colorado2075014750 
Connecticut3876144370 
Delaware3037529220 
Dist. of Columbia4309950820 
Florida1812112600 
Georgia1979714060 
Hawaii4917560590 
Idaho1776611150 
Illinois1944213580 
Indiana2689122900 
Iowa2010114200 
Kansas2939626490 
Kentucky1876313350 
Louisiana2653822250 
Maine1987113920 
Maryland3567238160 
Massachusetts4251550540 
Michigan2887226430 
Minnesota3160329350 
Mississippi1698411830 
Missouri2683722800 
Montana2912326930 
Nebraska2079814420 
Nevada3140929820 
New Hampshire3716039750 
New Jersey3872843450 
New Mexico3043527900 
New York3800443700 
North Carolina2814225760 
North Dakota3068128830 
Ohio2872326200 
Oklahoma2678422480 
Oregon3167434300 
Pennsylvania2981728670 
Rhode Island3863243330 
South Carolina2653621910 
South Dakota2943926610 
Tennessee1741312120 
Texas1803712550 
Utah1961213950 
Vermont3770542350 
Virginia2088414870 
Washington3081628840 
West Virginia2772724900 
Wisconsin2148314890 
Wyoming3311932620 



I think the thing that bothers me most about the present welfare system is that all the money does not help the recipients improve their lot. If I was running the welfare system the recipient would be required to work so that society got something for the money. The recipient, of course, should derive a long term benefit from the required work. The system would put them in jobs that require learning useful skills and also, in the case of single parents, provide child care and education. This country has millions of tasks that are not being done. I would reintroduce something like CCC and WPA. I am not blaming the people on welfare but am blaming our system of lousy, union dominated public schools and Congress. Congress is, knowingly or not, is using the welfare programs as a way to buy votes. In my head this argument is much better explained.


Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.

Click the picture for more information about Hare Krishna in Houston. I found this place several months ago then forgot the picture. Today I got a letter about it. Their website is full of references to donations and money. Apparently Krishnians worship some version of God and money.


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4/17/2014: Dear Jesus, thank you for living out the service of love in our world. Help us to follow your example. Open our eyes to opportunities to love and serve others, that you may be glorified. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://devotional.upperroom.org/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Life and Adventures of Billy Dixon


Among the hunters was a young fellow who was continually stirring up trouble by quarreling. At O'Loughlin's he began imposing upon a quiet, peaceable man who never bothered anybody. The boys persuaded him to challenge the bully to fight a duel, telling him they would load the bully's gun with blank cartridges. The arrangements were soon made. The bully was willing to fight- at least he seemed to be. He was the only man in camp that did not know that the affair was a "frame up."

The seconds were chosen, and the time and place of the meeting fixed. The weapons were to be six-shooters, at fifteen steps. The buffalo hunters lined up to see the fight. The quiet fellow was to shoot over the bully's head, but close enough for him to hear the whistle of the bullet. At the command of "fire" both pistols cracked, but nobody was hit. The bully winced a bit at the sound of the bullet as it passed over his head. He soon went locoed, and became so badly frightened that he could hardly stand. His knees knocked together, and he trembled like a wet dog on a cold day. Before the second encounter could take place, the bully squawked, saying that he had enough. He was teased and rawhided until he left camp, and pulled out for pleasanter surroundings.
For the whole story click HERE.


Dixon, Billy, 1850-1913. [from old catalog]; Barde, Frederick Samuel, 1869- [from old catalog] comp. Life and adventures of "Billy" Dixon (Kindle Locations 1180-1190). Guthrie, Okl., Printed by the Co-operative publishing co..

"How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 8:54 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Thursday, 17 April 2014 9:02 PM CDT
Monday, 14 April 2014

3209 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"When I came up to bat with three men on and two outs in the ninth, I looked in the other team's dugout and they were already in street clothes."Bob Uecker


Yesterday the high temperature was 89F, when I woke today, at the crack of 1 PM, the temperature was 42F. What kind of cruel trick is the weather playing on us. We have had thunder and rain all day. Today seems winterer than any day during the past winter season. If the climate change people were espousing the likely onset of an ice age instead of global warming I would be more likely to believe them..


I have to go back to my old home stomping grounds soon. The trip has to be before mid May. While I was looking for a place to eat lunch when I was planning the trip I found a place. I then used Google maps to give me a picture of the place I happened to notice, from the satellite view that the courthouse square in Bay City looked like a computer chip. I cropped the image and removed all the cars. Tell me that this doesn't look like the CPU.



One of the high points of my day is the reading of the comic strips in the newspaper and on-line. I find that most of the strips have a better commentary on our current national mindset than the news purveyors. I am certain that most news outlets have drifted so far from news towards entertainment and money making that most of what they present as news is inaccurate, distorted and or controlled by special interests. Todays "Candorville" presents an idea that is counter intuitive to my normal style. Clyde makes a valid point. I don't know how to prepare for the future without specific plans.



Why when I am looking at the monitor can I think of nothing to write but as soon as I look away zillions of ideas zip through my mind?
I have not received any suggestions for my dilemma presented in my last blog entry. "Boats" has wakened me twice wanting to know when the next round of tests are scheduled. By the way "boats" works in the life boat/shuttle area of the ship. Those are used to maneuver around the outside of the ship during repairs. When the ship reaches its destination "boats" and his crew will be responsible for ship to planet transfers.

I filed my income tax today using Turbotax. The process left me terribly depressed. It just reinforced my sense of loss. It has been almost a year and I feel her loss even more that before. I keep waiting for her to stick her head around the corner to tell me something about "Dancing with the Stars".
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4/14/2014: Dear God, help us to turn to you at all times, especially when we see that we can do nothing to help ourselves. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Buttermilk Pie

Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine, melted
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons flour
3 eggs, beaten
1 pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
1 deep dish pie shell (either your own recipe or storebought)
Directions:
1 Preheat oven to 400°F.
2 Beat the butter and sugar together until light.
3 Add the eggs and beat; then beat in vanilla.
4 Sift the dry ingredients together and add to the batter alternatively with the buttermilk; beat until smooth.
5 Pour into a deep dish pie shell and bake at 400F for 10 minutes, reduce heat to 350F and bake for 50-60 additional minutes.
6 Pie should turn a nice golden brown and a knife inserted should come out clean.
7 I think it is absolutely best when it is just still warm. (Not too hot, or it will be like napalm.)


Read more: http://www.food.com/recipe/buttermilk-pie-56?oc=linkback

"I used to be indecisive, but now I'm not so sure."


Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 10:15 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 11 April 2014

3206 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"The way to catch a knuckleball is to wait until it stops rolling and then pick it up."Bob Uecker


We have a grandson in Austin that I do not see very often. He is 13 almost 14. Last year he was just a bit tall than his cousin of nearly the same age in Houston. Now Case is over 6 feet 2 inches tall and still growing. He is playing baseball this season. He is skinny as a rail.


I hope to get a schedule of his games and make plans to see one of his games. His mother was a fabulous softball player. She is the fiercest competitor I ever knew. I hope her son is as good at baseball.


I really need to force myself to sit down and file my income tax. But every year I get so pissed by the amount of the tax I pay for an incompetent Federal government and a super bloated military-industrial complex that I cannot sleep or digest my meals. No family or business would exist for long with such shoddy financial control or oversight on it various responsibilities. Everywhere that the Federal Government has jurisdiction I see failure to control the process. The only Federal function I can name that comes anywhere near being efficient is the Postal Service and they are bleeding money like a bunch of drunken Congressmen. We truly need to reboot the Federal Government and put in fresh personnel.


I got an invitation from UT to attend a performance of "MacBeth" at the end of this month at the Winedale barn. I hesitated because I think "Macbeth" stinks. I know that is not a literary criticism but it is my summary. I do not understand killing for power. The older I get the more precious all life becomes to me.


Some months ago the Houston Chronicle started publishing a CRYPTOQUIP daily. For the first two weeks I had no success. The last one I successfully solved was April 4, 2014. Since then I can only substitute for the given letter. What has happened to my mind? Today's cryptoquip puzzle was:

B GUNOL'RJ JLZUFJK PJBLH
DMMBHLJK ATJ VODMMBV
LURJO "NOFMMJM," PNA B
GDML'A HBRJL ATJ ZUFVJ.


One of the kids from my "never ending book"woke me this morning asking about the selection tests imposed when two or more people are rivals for the same spouse. First let me give you some background. This is how my book started a long time ago. There have been major changes, revolts, mutinies, courtships, loves, births and deaths since I first typed the following words."The ship has been under way for almost 400 years.

The characters continually surprise me. The people have grown the longer that I know them. They really seem to be alive in some part of my mind. When I look in on them they tell me what has been happening. It is a schizophrenic feeling. One of them woke me up recently to tell me a discovery he had made about their last seedless watermelon. Many times the most unlikely person has stepped forward at a critical time.

At the onset there were 25 awake and aware breeding pairs (hots). They were tagged a through y. Z was reserved for each of the 100,000 female and 20,000 male gametes in cold storage (icicles). Each person, when born is given a name composed of a letter from the original hot pair who is the most direct linkage then a 2 digit number for the generation then a single digit for birth order to the biological parents and finally f or m.

I am hung with this problem. Suggestions?

One of the gardeners is l197f. She is called Pots. Her genetic imperative is u163m called Tubes but she really wants to mate with b191m who she secretly calls Sparks."

A genetic imperative is a person from the other sex who has a genetic make-up that complements the one seeking breeding rights. Sometimes the one who would be best for society just does not appeal to us.

How do I design a test from the competing rivals to assure the emotional needs are met and also assure that the people are strong enough to face unknown challenges in the world they are seeking in 5,000 years? The test cannot be all about strength or looks. Nor can the tests be something that can be studied or prepped for.

I really need ideas because "boats" is insistent.



Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.
St Marks 5th grade basketball chant click HERE.

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4/9/2014: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for inviting us to your table of love. Amen.
4/10/2014: Dear Father, thank you for bringing us into your presence through your Son, Jesus Christ. As he taught us, we pray, "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one."* Amen.
4/11/2014: Dear God of wisdom, give us a hunger to study your word. Grant us wisdom and help us stay on the right path throughout our lives. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://devotional.upperroom.org/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Broiled Tomato Sandwich


Ingredients:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 ripe tomatoes, sliced
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese,
divided
4 slices bread, lightly toasted
Directions:
1. Preheat oven to broil. I use a griddle or skillet instead and cook on top of the stove.
2. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the olive oil and vinegar. Marinate the tomatoes in the mixture, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, parsley, oregano, black pepper and 4 teaspoons Parmesan cheese. Spread mixture on each slice of toasted bread. Place marinated tomatoes on 2 slices and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese.
4. Place on a baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes, or until cheese turns golden brown. Serve immediately, open faced or closed.

 

 


"If we got one-tenth of what was promised to us in these State of the Union speeches, there wouldn't be any inducement to go to heaven.
Will Rogers
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 7:49 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Friday, 11 April 2014 7:58 PM CDT
Tuesday, 8 April 2014

3203 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"Why should we, however, in economics, have to plead ignorance of the sort of facts on which, in the case of a physical theory, a scientist would certainly be expected to give precise information?"Friedrich August von Hayek


YD told me there was a drive in theater near us. The Showboat is near Hockley, Texas. The only other thing that made Hockley memorable was the salt mine. Over 40 years ago I arranged a tour through the mine with 23 cub scouts. The boys and I were excited but their parents, one by one, refused to let their sons go. Now I cannot walk far enough to even contemplate another tour. I went on-line and found info about the Showboat drive-in and discovered "Muppets Most Wanted" and "Noah" were playing. We planned a family outing with she and I and my son and my two Houston grandsons for Friday. Then Junior GS had a baseball tournament Saturday so we rescheduled for Sunday. In the meantime I contacted one of the people who own and operate the Showboat. Turns out that their grandparents operated the Showboat drive-in theater in Bay City where Carolyn and I spent many a quiet Saturday night. I cannot remember a single movie but I know we did watch them. I was very shy and sorta backward and Carolyn was a strong guardian of our morals. We used to play board games and card games during some of the lamer movies. But as usual we were prevented from going. The weather forecast predicted heavy and dangerous thundershowers and etc. As of the following Monday the area had received less than 0.01 inches of rain during the entire weekend. The theater is open only on weekends. I may just go by myself.


My new Discover magazine has me excited again. When I look around at all the scientific and technical discoveries and improvements I am stunned by how close we are to the kind of existence portrayed in the original "Star Trek". When I go to doctors the gadgets they use and the procedures they use are trending to the size, scope and minimal invasiveness the medical staff used on the "Enterprise. This issue had an article about the development of the Vasimir ion rocket.

Click the picture for info about the rocket. The rocket has the potential for specific impulses much greater and of longer duration than chemical rockets. The only thing, according to the developers, preventing huge increases in specific impulse is the need for a really huge electrical supply. The more electricity used by the engine the greater the thrust. What the developers need is the antimatter drive that was used on the Enterprise NCC-1701 to provide the energy to generate electricity and the dilithium crystals to direct the power. None of those are likely but some kid growing up now will have had the inspiration to try to duplicate them.

I doubt that the Vasimir engine proves to be the space drive engine that carries us past the planets but I am almost positive that work on the engine and suitable power sources will result in a true deep space drive involving massive warping of local space. We will never reach the stars as long as light speed is our limit. We must develop a way to warp space around a vessel so that its apparent travel is one tenth or one millionth of the actual distance travelled. That would be warp 1 and warp 6.Warp one would get us to Alpha Centuri A in less than 5 months. Teegarden's star at warp 6 would be reached in less than a week at warp 6.


At the follow-up meeting with Dr G yesterday I learned why he did not install the stents that I had been lead to expect.. During the heart cath March 31 he checked the condition of the vein and arteries going into my legs before he threaded the tool up into my heart. Yesterday he told me that he expected to find much more blockages in my legs than three years ago. He did find the blockage were worse in some places and better in other places. Then he looked at the heart and found and found, in general, worse blockages than at the same sites in March 2011. He said at that point he had the gas man put me under so he could think of a good procedure. He told me that he did not want to install stents in my heart and legs at the same time. Blood clots are too real a risk. He said both legs and heart need stents but wanted to install them to my best advantage. Yesterday we agreed that restoring circulation would allow me to return to walking and more activity. He then told me he would talk over our conversation and the scan diagrams with his partner to map out a course of treatment. Dr G told me his scheduler would be contacting me with a schedule for more work.

Click the picture for a larger view. So I am waiting. This time with not so much apprehension.



Funny, funny Mrs. Brown.
Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas Special 2013,Buckin' Mammy


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04/08/2014: Dear God, help us to be willing to leave our familiar place to follow you and serve you fully. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Things to Keep in Mind

1. No one can ruin your day without YOUR permission.
2. Most people will be about as happy, as they decide to be.
3. Others can stop you temporarily, but only you can do it permanently.
4. Whatever you are willing to put up with, is exactly what you will have.
5. Success stops when you do.
6. When your ship comes in...make sure you are willing to unload it.
7. You will never "have it all together."
8. Life is a journey...not a destination. Enjoy the trip!
9. The biggest lie on the planet: "When I get what I want, I will be happy."
10. The best way to escape your problem is to solve it.
11. I've learned that ultimately, 'takers' lose and 'givers' win.
12. Life's precious moments don't have value, unless they are shared.
13. If you don't start, it's certain you won't arrive.
14. We often fear the thing we want the most.
15. He or she who laughs...lasts.
16. Yesterday was the deadline for all complaints.
17. Look for opportunities...not guarantees.
18. Life is what's coming...not what was.
19. Success is getting up one more time.
20. Now is the most interesting time of all.
21. When things go wrong.....don't go with them.


"The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Posted by wayne at 6:52 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 4 April 2014

3199 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"The credit which the apparent conformity with recognized scientific standards can gain for seemingly simple but false theories may, as the present instance shows, have grave consequences."Friedrich August von Hayek

Misty and I woke very early. Yes! 9 am is very early for us. I loaded two of my digital camera, and map book, walking stick, and trip notebook into the car and we took off on a wild flower photo expedition. We stopped at McDonalds for breakfast burritos, McGriddle "somethingorother", coffee and a coke. We drove out Hwy US 290 towards toward Brenham and got lost at the interchange north of Brenham. As always the Bluebonnets were gorgeous at the Washington County entrance sign. After I realized I was lost we backtracked until we got to the exit for Austin. The wildflowers on that leg were just barely above the grass with Indian Paintbrushes dominating the Bluebonnets. After correcting our route the Bluebonnets became more prevalent. I veered of on FM 2679 because in years past there has been a lovely display at a house near Zionville. Sadly the owners have plowed the land. I suspect they had people barging off onto their property. We turned left onto "La Bahia" Texas 390 and followed it into and through Burton. By this time I realized the overcast day, threat of rain, and immaturity of the flowers meant I was not gonna stop and set-up for picture taking. We took Texas 237 through Burton/Warrington area where the annual spring antique event was taking place. Miles and miles of junk and geegaws with miles and miles of people buying said junk and geegaws. At LaGrange we took US-77 south to Schulenburg where we stopped at Frank's Restaurant for lunch. I had fried catfish fillets and Misty had a large steak that was still cooking on the serving plate. Frank's was mentioned often as the place the area service men stopped at first after returning to their home towns. The place opened in 1929 and is doing a booming business. We drove on to Hallettsville. Misty was impressed by the courthouse.

This picture was taken in 2008 on an earlier flower photo expedition. We took US-90A to Eagle Lake at which time I started looking for a road north to I-10. Soon however we were in Rosenberg then Richmond and I became horribly lost. I finally oriented myself and learned I had approached 180 degrees from the route Carolyn and I took when returning to Houston from a Hometown visit. We rain into a light sprinkle all the way from Eagle Lake to Richmond.

I think I will try in a week or 10 days to revisit the flowers. They should be approaching their peak. I do need to take the electric scooter. With every passing week it gets harder to walk any distance without my legs feeling "heavy" and my feet going to sleep. I would like to visit the wild flowers along White Oak Bayou near TC Jester but the walk is way too long and the slopes are too great for the scooter.


The last time I bought flea treatment for Rascal from 1800PETMEDS they sent a packet of catnip. He had seemed to have lost his attraction to it so I put the catnip in an old clean medicine bottle and then forgot it. I somehow seemed to have started saving my old pill bottles. I must have 50 or more of various sizes. As the years pile on I find more surprising lunacy in myself. Last night the stash of catnip appeared and Rascal went into a frenzy of stretching and cutiness. Just as I raised my video recorder he caught on and feigned sleep. See yall tomorrow.


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04/04/2014: Dear God, free us from shame and fear, and lead us into a new life. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Grandma's Roast Beef with Gravy

From Cook's Country | December/January 2011
Why this recipe works:
Salting the meat for our Grandma's Roast Beef with Gravy recipe and letting it sit overnight helped season the meat and developed more flavor. To get a good crust and tender meat without overcooking, we first seared the roast on the stovetop and then finished it in a low oven. Setting the roast on top of the vegetables eliminated the need for a V-rack and enhanced the flavor of our gravy.
Serves 6 to 8
For even deeper seasoning, refrigerate the salt-rubbed roast for 24 hours. You can substitute top sirloin for the top round. Look for an evenly shaped roast with a 1/4-inch fat cap. Tie kitchen twine in 1-inch intervals around the circumference of the meat.

Ingredients
1 (4- to 5-pound) boneless top round roast, tied (**)

Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces

1 onion, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
1 celery rib, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon tomato paste
2 (10.5-ounce) cans beef consommé. Use half the water suggested on can.
1 1/2 cups water

Instructions
1. SEASON MEAT Pat roast dry with paper towels and rub with 2 teaspoons salt. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.

2. BROWN ROAST Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 225 degrees. Pat roast dry with paper towels and rub with 2 teaspoons pepper. Heat oil in large oven safe skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown roast all over, 8 to 12 minutes; transfer to plate.

3. ROAST BEEF Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat from pan. Add butter to skillet and melt over medium heat. Cook carrots, onion, and celery until lightly browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add flour and tomato paste and cook until flour is golden and paste begins to darken, about 2 minutes. Off heat, push vegetables to center of pan. Place roast on top of vegetable and transfer skillet to oven. Cook until meat registers 125 degrees (for medium-rare), 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours. Transfer roast to carving board, tent with foil, and let rest 20 minutes.

4. MAKE GRAVY Meanwhile, keeping in mind that handle will be hot, return skillet with vegetables to medium-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are deep golden brown, about 5 minutes. Slowly whisk in consommé and water, scraping up any browned bits, and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Strain gravy through fine-mesh strainer into serving bowl; discard vegetables. Season with salt and pepper.


5. CARVE Remove kitchen twine from roast. Thinly slice roast crosswise against grain. Serve with gravy.



**This recipe uses a top round roast, an inexpensive cut from the rump of the steer that's most commonly roasted and sliced for deli sandwiches. Since this cut is irregular, we tie it with kitchen twine to create a uniform shape that will cook evenly. And because it's relatively lean, we sear the roast quickly on the stovetop to build flavor before roasting it slowly so that it doesn't overcook and dry out.



"Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.
~ Nikita Khrushchev
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 12:01 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Wednesday, 2 April 2014

3197 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"It can hardly be denied that such a demand quite arbitrarily limits the facts which are to be admitted as possible causes of the events which occur in the real world."Friedrich August von Hayek


After my last office visit with my cardiologist his Nurse Practitioner recommended I have a heart catherization. Dr Gonzalez agreed and scheduled me for the procedure. With the breakdown of communication in his office the first schedule was aborted and rescheduled for March 31. I went into the procedure expecting Dr. G to install at least 2 stents in my legs and maybe some in my heart. I was really emotionally wrought-up before Misty took me to St. Joseph for the cath. After I came out of the anesthesia I was informed that no stents were installed. Before I was discharged Dr G ordered a cat scan on my abdomen. He was looking for a aneurism. I have a follow-up April 7 to discuss the scan and condition of my circulatory system. So after all the stress and etc I still don't know my status. I cannot pursue minimally-invasive spinal surgery until I know if my heart can withstand any surgery.


Last year my senior daughter told me that her younger daughter was going to Europe for her senior trip and she was going to accompany her. Since I will never get to visit Europe I told her to take bazillions of pictures and send them to me. She responded that the roaming charges would be prohibitive. A free way to send info back and forth would use Skype. So I opened a Skype account but quickly realized I could not hear the speaker on my laptop. I Ebayed a headphone/microphone. I decided I needed to add a webcam and microphone to my desktop. I bought a webcam with built-in microphone. They returned to the US before I received any of the gear. The webcam arrived yesterday. I is a "plug and play" USB device. I plugged it in and got a picture but no sound. I browsed and cursed my way through the various "settings" of my desktop. At 3 am this morning I finally found the volume control for the microphone. I made a video and uploaded it to youtube at -Fk4hRw8e0c. I did not know I looked so gnarly. It may be approaching time for a trim.


The anxiety and stress of the heart cath really screwed up my sleep patterns. So much so that I have been sleeping all day and thus unable to tour the wildflowers. Come "Hell or high water" I will take a motoring wildflower expedition tomorrow.


I watch too much late night TV, time shifted to daylight, and am much bothered by the ads for companies who advertise "If you owe $10,000 or more to the IRS we can get it reduced to much less." Then they cite taxpayers who owe $38,000 settling for $2,500 and various others reduced tax debts. How can they who owe so much, after obviously earning so much, get away with paying so little. The IRS always gets every penny I owe. I wonder how wide spread debt reduction is? No wonder the tax rate is so high if the IRS is forgiving so much debt.


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4/2/2014: Almighty God, our Rock and our Redeemer, we give you thanks for the mystery of the cross. Because Christ is risen, we look forward to eternal life with you. Alleluia! Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Tomato-Corn Chowder


Makes 6 servings
Ingredients:
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 large yellow onions, diced
Kosher salt
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried epazote or oregano
1 teaspoon ground Mexican chile, such as ancho
1 small yucca or Idaho potato, peeled and finely diced
4 cups vegetable stock or store-bought unsalted vegetable broth
4 cups diced tomatoes
5 ears corn, husks and silks removed, kernels cut off and reserved, cobs reserved

Mexican crema or sour cream, for serving
Lime wedges, for serving
Avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced, for serving
Fresh cilantro leaves, chopped, for serving

Instructions: Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the cumin, epazote and chile and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.


Add the yuca, stock, tomatoes with their juices and corn cobs. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the yuca is tender, about 30 minutes. Add the corn kernels and cook just until heated through and still crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Discard the corn cobs.

Using an immersion blender or stand blender (working in batches if necessary), purée about half of the soup until thickened. It should be creamy but still have bits of vegetables throughout. Stir the purée into the remaining soup. Serve with the crema, lime, avocado and cilantro.

"I don't ever want you to settle for another average day in your life."

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 9:28 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 28 March 2014

3192 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"We know: of course, with regard to the market and similar social structures, a great many facts which we cannot measure and on which indeed we have only some very imprecise and general information."Friedrich August von Hayek

I think the prettiest car I have seen, but only in pictures, is the 1949 Delahaye175 S Saoutchik Roadster.


Based on the publicized wheelbase of 9.7 feet, measurements from the picture show the car to be about 17 feet long from "bullet" nose to rear bumper. If that size scales to other same era cars with known weights this behemoth had to be over 6 thousand pounds. No wonder it had a fragile drive train and transmission. Can you imagine parking this boat? Or driving it with gasoline at $3.50 per gallon. I am not sure the beast would even run on the gasoline sold as commodity in the USA. But lordy it is pretty. This one sold for over $3,400,000 recently. If you pay that much you don't drive it in public but truck it from show to show.


For some reason my brother has decided my birthday is the 29th. It has always been the 23rd. Whatever the reason he sent me a cute BD card.

Inside it says "We all have a little gray hare on our head". As a very young boy I envied my Dad for his black hair. It was as black and shiny as a crow's wing and with just a little curl in the front. Every time I looked in a mirror I hoped to see that my hair had turned black. After I got married I realized it was never going to turn. I think that is when I quit looking at myself in a mirror. I used to think Dad was Superman then from 18 to 35 I thought he was merely normal. Now that I am of approaching infinity age I know again he was Super!

The other night in a recurring bout of insomnia I stumbled across "Father Knows Best" Starring Robert Young, Jane Wyatt, Elinor Donahue, Billy Gray, and Lauren Chapin. For more information about the show than you ever knew you wanted click HERE. It sure would be good to again see a TV sitcom where the father is not portrayed as a bumbling fool. TV has moved from belittling women to belittling men. The world I live in pretty much gives both genders an equal role.


Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.
The weather forecast for tomorrow says no rain, warm, partly cloudy with a brisk wind. The wildflower sightings all say the flowers will peak in mid April so I am planning on going at a good time.


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3/27/2014: O God, work through me, love through me, heal through me. Amen.
3/28/2014: Dear Lord, give us the faith to keep trusting you, even when the way ahead seems hopeless. Amen.



The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://devotional.upperroom.org/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Turtle Bars

Ingredient
2 cups flour

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup soft butter
1 cup pecan halves -- approximately
2/3 cup butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup chocolate chips

Preparation Method
Beat flour, 1 c. brown sugar and soft butter 2-3 minutes on medium speed. Press into 13"x9" pan.

Arrange pecan halves in even rows on crust.

Combine 2/3 c. butter and 1/2 c. brown sugar. Boil, stirring, for one minute. Pour over pecans.

Bake @ 350° for 18-22 minutes until bubbly.

Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let stand 3 minutes and spread chocolate, allowing pecans and caramel to show through.

Cool completely and cut in small squares, cutting between the pecan halves.


"Veggie bacon?!? That sounds like a sign of the Apocalypse.
~ Turtle Dundee
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 8:26 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Wednesday, 26 March 2014

3190 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"We know, in other words, the general conditions in which what we call, somewhat misleadingly, an equilibrium will establish itself: but we never know what the particular prices or wages are which would exist if the market were to bring about such an equilibrium."Friedrich August von Hayek

In more earthy words we know that a woman will have "inny" gentitals and a man will have "outy" genitals but we do not know whether either will be intelligent.


I wrote about taking a road trip for wild flowers Saturday. Today I read a report today that says the wildflowers look promising between Bellville and Fayetteville on Hwy 159. I may abort the stretch along 290 from Brenham to Burton.

If the report is accurate the flowers should be near peak around mid April. I hope I am up and around by that time. My younger granddaughter is graduating in Austin on May 22 so the wildflowers might be just past peak during my trip to Austin for Kellie's graduation.

I have nothing to add and the "Duck Dynasty" season finale is tonight so "hasta la vista"
Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.
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3/26/2014: The cry of our hearts is to know you more, Lord Jesus. Thank you for your love that draws us ever closer to you. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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kaksi шутки

A professional treasure hunter was diving for pirate treasure in an ocean cove. He searched for hours with no luck. Finally he started toward the shore. When he was about knee deep in the water he tripped over an old strong box. He scooped it out and opened it... It was full of gold coins!

The Moral of the Story: Booty is Only Shin Deep



Sitting on the side of the highway waiting to catch speeding drivers, a State Police Officer sees a car puttering along at 22 MPH. He thinks to Himself "This driver is just as dangerous as a speeder!" So he turns on his lights and pulls the driver over. Approaching the car, he notices that there are five old ladies - two in the front seat and three in the back - wide eyed and white as ghosts.

The driver, obviously confused, says to him, "Officer, I don't understand, I was doing exactly the speed limit! What seems to be the problem?"

"Ma'am," the officer replies, "You weren't speeding, but you should know that driving slower than the speed limit can also be a danger to other drivers."

"Slower than the speed limit? No sir, I was doing the speed limit exactly...Twenty two miles an hour!" the old woman says a bit proudly.

The State Police officer, trying to contain a chuckle explains to her that "22" was the route number, NOT the speed limit. A bit embarrassed, the woman grinned and thanked the officer for pointing out her error.

"But before I let you go, Ma'am, I have to ask...Is everyone in this car OK? These women seem AWFULLY shaken and they haven't muttered a single peep this whole time." the officer asks.

"Oh, they'll be all right in a minute officer. We just got off Route 119."


"I'd forgotten what an honest sandwich it is. For those of you not familiar, "BLT" stands for "bacon, lettuce, and tomato". A lot of people think the "B" stands for "bread", and I can understand someone not wanting a lettuce and tomato sandwich. But, the bread is implied in the word "sandwich". Anyway, it's an American original. Everyone should have a BLT as soon as they can.
~ Stephen Colbert
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 9:55 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Tuesday, 25 March 2014

3189 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"If most people are not willing to see the difficulty, this is mainly because, consciously or unconsciously, they assume that it will be they who will settle these questions for the others, and because they are convinced of their own capacity to do this."Friedrich August von Hayek

I have been reading Shakespeare's plays and sonnets as part of an on-line group for almost 2 years. Today we started the last play with attribution to Shakespeare. "Two Noble Kinsmen" has seldom been performed and is very different from his other plays. Only in the 19th century was Shakespeare acknowledged as the major author. Despite all that I am saddened at the end of the reading.


Two Noble Kinsmen

O you heavenly charmers,
What thing you make of us! For what we lack
We laugh, for what we have are sorry; still
Are children in some kind. Let us be thankful
For that which is, and with you leave dispute
That are above our question. Let's go off,
And bear us like the same.


Fortunately the Shakespeare season in Winedale starts in July. I have finagled my brother and kids and grandkids to attend with me. The way I have it scheduled I will see each of the plays this year three times. Shakespeare is much better performed than read.



I don't know if is from fear or denial of the procedure scheduled for March 31 but I have done almost nothing except read and nap for the last 10 days. I finished "Memoirs of World War II" and passed it to young daughter. I saw her reading it this morning. I enjoyed the book immensely because I am intimately familiar with the Texas towns mentioned. And as it turned out I have gone to school with the descendents of some of the participants in the book.


I think I will drive out to Burton and loop down to La Grange to Hallettsville to Sealy to Home and look for wild flowers.

I might not get another chance. I need to make sure the scooter batteries are charged and the controls work.

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3/25/2014: Dear God, open our hearts to those around us who need to hear the good news of your love and eternal life. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://upperroom.org/devotional/email/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Hawaiian Tuna Salad

1 can (9 oz) tuna, drained
1 can pineapple chunks, drained
1/2 Cup chopped green pepper
1/2 Cup shredded carrots
1/3 Cup mayonaise

Combine ingredients with 1/4 tsp salt & 1/8 tsp pepper. Add 3/4 tsp ground ginger if desired. Mix well.

Let stand for about 1 hr for flavors to meld.

Serve on hard rolls or inside a wedged tomato.


"The other week, while sitting over a bacon omelet and rambling on about how much I love the "bacon, egg, cheese on toast combo", a good buddy looks across the table at me and utters a sentence I may never forget as long as I live: "Yeah, because bacon is the candy bar of meat."
~ Adam McArthur
"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 10:14 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Monday, 24 March 2014

3188 Days since retiring July 1, 2005!



"This means that to entrust to science - or to deliberate control according to scientific principles - more than scientific method can achieve may have deplorable effects."Friedrich August von Hayek

Science and science alone would be a disastrous way to run a civilization. The scientific method, however, is a great way for that civilization to measure its performance in governing.


Finally one of my plans worked out almost as expected. One person backed out of our trip to Kemah for the Crawfish boil. Son said he needed to sleep for his night job. Despite all the potential "deal-breakers" we had a good time. It was in the low to mid 60s. To Houstonians that is near freezing. The wind made it feel much colder. On top of the weather were the costs; $6 to park close enough for me to walk. Walking more than 50 feet has become a real torture. Entry fee into the area containing the crawfish and various vendors of beer , games, and telephone was $8 each. The crawfish container held about 3 pounds boiled crawfish, a piece of corn on the cob, and a small boiled red potato. That was $10 each. Total was 6 + (3 X 8) + (3 X 10)= $60. I am not sure the adventure was worth that much but I did enjoy the day with junior daughter and junior grandson.
The first picture shows JD and JGS standing in line after we got the three Styrofoam clamshells. That portion of the serving line was too long for my legs. I put a yellow arrow on the picture to show her. The line to pay and get the empty clamshell food container was about 100 feet long with the line to get the crawfish. The following line to get the crawfish was almost 200 feet long. The people organizing the event had the line meandering through the area. That process assured people were kept moving and looking a different aspects of the area. Walt Disney perfected this crowd control technique.

I forgot to take a picture before I started eating the crawfish. One of the reviews I read about previous events complained of lack of seasoning. I can attest that these were boiled with more than enough seasoning. I had been taken aback by the price and decided one container each was enough. Daughter and I agreed, once we got home, that it would have been better if we had one more container to split 3 ways. I wish the tails had been bigger. Some of the crawfish were smaller than my little finger.

I was so glad that daughter was with me. She stood in place for my legs. Misty and Cameron are my steady troupers. He is sprouting like a weed and getting skinny.

I hope next year the weather is better and that the work Dr Gonzalez does restores my mobility. I get so tired after walking as little as 50 feet. Plus I am now short of breathe and wheezing when I walk that short distance.


Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.


In Umbarger, memories of POWs and their art remain
by Joe Holley


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3/23/2014: Dear God of grace, thank you for the many blessings that have enriched our lives. Place a right and noble spirit within us. Help us remain close to you in the face of all the changes in our lives. Amen.
3/24/2014: Dear Lord, may each of us be ready to accept your challenge to follow and serve. For Jesus' sake we pray. Amen.


The prayers are from the Upper Room. For your own free E-Mail Devotional visit : http://devotional.upperroom.org/ and click on the link "Other Ways to Receive the Daily Devotional"
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Louisiana Crawfish Etouffee

recipe makes 6 servings
Ingredients
3 cups long grain white rice
6 cups water
3/4 cup butter
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 pound crawfish tails
2 tablespoons canned tomato sauce
1 cup water, or as needed
6 green onions, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, or to taste


Directions
Combine the rice and water in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until rice is tender and water has been absorbed.

While the rice is cooking, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, and saute until transparent. Stir in the garlic, and cook for a minute. Stir in the flour until well blended. Gradually stir in the tomato sauce and water, then add the crawfish tails and bring to a simmer. Add the green onions and season with salt, pepper, and Cajun seasoning. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes over low heat, until the crawfish is cooked but not tough. Serve over hot cooked rice.

The recipe above is good but for a really strong Louisiana flavor try this Crawfish Etouffee Recipe.




"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon. ~ Doug Larson"

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 


Posted by wayne at 10:21 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Monday, 24 March 2014 10:29 PM CDT

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