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Friday, July 31, 2009

Boomers Going Green

Sustainability. It's the latest buzz word in our heightened sense of ecological awareness. Essentially, the term means the capacity to endure and renew. It can be applied to every aspect of our lives: environmental, social and economic. Ancient forests and wetlands are examples of environments that have endured for millions of years. Other eco terms terms such as going green, carbon footprint and LEED have become part of our vernacular. LEED, by the way means Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. Over time, civilization, development and population increases have caused negative, detrimental impact upon all of our lives. Just look at mountain ranges all over the United States---developers are bulldozing the tops off mountains and clear-cutting trees into oblivion. Fly over the Appalachians, parts of the Rocky Mountains and you will see thousands of bald mountain tops.

Those of us who marched for civil rights and advocated Flower Power realize the importance of saving our environment for our grandchildren and future generations. Interestingly, several recent studies indicate that the boomer generation may be at the forefront of going green. Consumers over age 50 are more likely to purchase green products and choose environmentally friendly alternatives. A boomer friend of mine is president of a sustainability group that has rallied her Midwest town to go green by encouraging the construction of LEED certified buildings, creating more walking and biking trails and ramping up trash recycling. Several other friends have earned master gardener certifications and teach others how to grow sustainable vegetable gardens and drought friendly flower beds.

Most of us already know that we can conserve energy by turning down the heat, turning up the A/C, sealing cracks and installing a storm door. There are hundreds of other ways we can conserve. But here are some easy and very practical eco-conscious ideas you might want to implement.

Plant a tree. Then plant another tree. Not only do trees increase the value of your home and add aesthetic beauty, they provide cooling shade in front of a sunny window and actually lower the indoor temperature by several degrees.

Install ceiling fans in nearly every room of your home. Our family lived in the wretchedly hot, humid South for many years and during the summer, air conditioning was an absolute necessity. But with ceiling fans in every room, we found we could keep the A/C at a bit higher temp and we just felt cooler because of the air circulation. Today, we live in the comfortable upper midwest. Summers here are a blessed, cool delight. Yet we have installed ceiling fans in all our rooms except the bathroom. There's a fan even in the kitchen. With the windows open, cross ventilation and the fans whirling, we seldom need to turn on the A/C. The ceiling fans make all the difference in the world. Most of our neighbors do not have ceiling fans and I've noticed that they use their A/C much more often than we ever do. A whole house fan is another effective way to cool off your indoor areas.

Grow your own veggie garden. It's fun and rewarding. And the harvest always seems to taste better knowing you grew it yourself. Too backbreaking at our age? Try growing tomatoes in big pots on your deck or porch. Much less work than a big garden.

Stop buying water in plastic bottles. Plastic never dies. It creates unimaginable litter, even polluting all of the earth's oceans. Install a home purification unit instead, that can be attached to your kitchen sink.

Walk, hike, ride a bike. Any time we conserve gasoline, we create less pollution. And staying in shape at our age ain't bad either. Sphere: Related Content

Do You want Big Brother with that Pizza?

Ordering pizza tonight? Click on this to hear a scary pizza delivery scenario.

And by the way, did you catch a glimpse of the recent Beer Summit at the White House's new outdoor Mugs and Jugs Cafe? In an attempt at beer diplomacy, the Obama beerocracy tried to settle a local dispute out of Cambridge, MASS. with a round of brewskies. The participants looked stiff and uncomfortable and the beers looked tepid. Is it possible to swig away any hard feelings with one stinkin' glass of warm beer, a couple peanuts and 500 clicking press photogs?
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Old Friends

Last week, I ran into a very, very special friend. Someone I haven't seen in over 50 years. The last time I saw her we were young children. She was one of my first childhood friends. We were neighbors and playmate pals. Our childhood homes were back to back. She lived in the house right behind us. There was a grassy, trampled foot path between our 2 houses, downtrodden by the two of us traipsing back and forth umpteen times a day. I was about seven years old and she was six. She was petite, thin and wiry with short, snowy-whitish blonde hair. I was taller with dark brown curls. She was a spitfire. I was adventurous. Together the two of us thought we owned the block. We did everything together. We especially loved playing in the huge field behind our houses in the warm summer months. We galloped imaginary ponies through the tall goldenrod weeds pretending we were cowgirls, stopping to munch on wild strawberries and raspberries. We used the big log playhouse on her property as our cowboy fort. That's where we'd hide out from our parents and plan our next raid on the farmer's corn field across the road. Although we lived in a sizeable midwest city, our newly built post war neighborhood sprung up next to farmland. The kindly farmer often let my best friend and me romp around in the big pile of hay he stacked inside his barn. Afterward, he'd let us pet the cows and chase the roosters.

My family lived in our little white frame bungalow for about 5 years. Then we moved out of state and I never saw my friend again. Since then, I've married, had children and have lived all over the country. Three years ago, my husband and I came full circle and moved back to my original hometown where my friend and I first became best pals. Last week, through a series of fateful circumstances I unexpectedly came face to face with her again. It was at an estate sale at her deceased mother's old home---the very house where we first formed a friendship so many years ago. To my surprise, she remembered me and of course I remembered her. The very first thing she said to me upon being reintroduced after 50 years, was: "I heard you'd become a nun!" Obviously not. We laughed and then she looked me straight in the eye and said: We've got a bond, you know. We've got a special bond." And indeed we do, my friend. Indeed we do. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Have You Noticed Lately....?

That Brittney Spears has gone mainstream? She's modeling clothes in a recent JC Penney catalog. What's next? Schlepping frig's for Sears?

That disgusting white speck on Glenn Beck's lip? It's always there. Is it spit? Chapped lip? Can't his make up people cover it up?

The change in appearance of Rev. Al Sharpton? He's lost a bunch of weight. His hair even looks thinner. Maybe a facelift too? Why doesn't he ever smile?

That a carton of ice cream is no longer a full half gallon? It's less. But more expensive.

That the stimulus isn't working and neither are millions of laid off Americans?

That for some cities in the Midwest including Chicago, it's been the coldest July on record?

That we haven't seen or heard Al Gore in a long time?

That Nancy Pelosi seems to be getting meaner and nastier every week?

That Jon Gosselin is nothing more than an unfaithful, mumble butt slob with the personality of a doorknob?

That Switzerland gets more appealing every day?

That the Woodstock music festival was 40 years ago? Whatever happened to peace, love, rock and roll? Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Few Things to Ponder

Cash for Clunkers: the government's new car-buying incentive program. Instead of old cars, let's just junk some of those rusty, lunkhead clunkers in Congress.

Forty years ago, we put a man on the moon. Actually 2 men. Forty years later, we're still squabbling about affordable health care for everyone.

What's with all these "czars" in the Obama administration? 37 at last estimate. Imperialistic Russia had czars. But in the United States of America? Is this a free country or what?????

Word's out that Obama's recently appointed Special Advisor for Green Jobs (aka the Green Czar) is a self-admitted communist, has a criminal record and calls himself a revolutionary radical. Does anybody care???

Stupid is as stupid does. Did Obama act stupidly for saying the cops acted stupidly in the case of the Harvard professor and the Boston lawman? Especially when Obama admitted he didn't know anything about the incident.

The government runs Medicare but Medicare does not cover all health issues. If you want everything covered, you have to buy expensive supplemental policies and deal with confusing stuff like part A, Part B, Part C, Part D. If the government ruled health care, we'd all be sick.

Swine flu has been renamed to pacify pork producers. Now they're calling it H1N1 virus. Is that an offspring of R2D2? Will that make it any less dangerous?

Are you worried that our government has taken control of banks, car makers and now they have health care in their sights?

Be afraid. Be very afraid. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Joys of Grandchildren

What is it about grandchildren that makes grown men weep with happiness and grown women swoon? I have seen surly, old, curmugeonly sour goats wipe tears from their eyes when presented with a brand new grandbaby. Grandchildren make us feel youthful. They give us boundless joy. They make us feel smart and their love is unconditional. Our very own grandson turned 3 years old last week. Another milestone along with tons of presents. I remember when he was first born. So tiny, he could fit in the palm of your hand. And now he's as tall as the kitchen counter top, healthy, lively and has developed his own distinct personality---sweet and sassy with a pranksterish sense of humor. He loves toy cars and trucks, pizza, cookies, and jumping sky high on the mini trampeline we bought him. Sadly for his granddad and me, we live 1000 miles away from our little dynamo and his family. After he was born, we discovered that we missed him terribly and we realized that we lived too far away to witness his growing up. To see our little guy more often, we bought a small second home near where our daughter and son-in-law live. That way we can stay at the condo for as long as we want and our grandson can visit us and we can visit him and his parents without being bothersome, long-term houseguests.

We dearly treasure the moments of our grandson's childhood. They are very special times that pass much, much too quickly. Seems like just a few months ago, he couldn't speak yet. We were worried he'd never talk. Now he's a savvy conversationalist and often mimicks our sentences like a parrot on steroids.

As our generation of urbane baby boomers become grandparents, we are shelving the traditional old titles like "Grandma" and "Grandpa". Frankly, I just couldn't imagine myself and my husband being called "Granny" and "Gramps". For me, those names conjure up images of stodgy, old, white haired elders in rocking chairs. Yet at the same time, isn't it hilarious what crazy, wacky and silly names grown men and women are willing to be called by their grandchildren? Some grandparent nicknames stem from ethnic or family traditions. Others come from the mind of a 2 year old. A few examples: Bagoo, Bella, Boompa, Cozy, Custard, Oma, Opa, Foxie, Peaches, Meemo, Pop Pop, Mimi, Pepper, Queenie, Popsie. In the long run, I suppose these tags are just as quirky and quaint as Grandma and Grandpa. But let's face it: our grandkids can call us anything and we melt.

Oh and click on this to see an hysterical bunch of rockin' grandbabies:
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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hyperemesis: danger to pregnant women

Hyperemesis. It sounds like an evil character in a Harry Potter book. Unfortunately it's not ficticious but something very real and very dangerous. If you have an adult daughter or grand daughter who is pregnant, there is a 3% chance that she may be suffering from this horrific condition. Hyperemesis is a very rare condition/disease that befalls 1 to 3% of pregnant women. Doctors frequently misdiagnose it as acute morning sickness. It's not! Symptoms include severe nausea and unrelenting vomiting from morning to night. The sufferer is unable to hold down any food or fluids---not even water. This results in loss of body weight, headaches, dizziness, weakness, depression and life threatening dehydration. Hyperemesis should be treated immediately as a medical emergency. Hospitalization and IV rehydration are required. After release from the hospital, patients often require at home IV care for continuous rehydration.

Our family is currently experiencing hyperemesis first hand. Our 34 year old pregnant daughter is suffering from hyperemesis. She has been bedridden for 4 months and has been in the hospital three times. We nearly lost her. Nothing seemed to stop the vomiting. She was dangerously dehydrated. Doctors tried all sorts of meds and nothing worked for her. She had severe reactions to some of the medication which made the situation even worse. Finally one doctor suggested she try Benadryl. Over the counter, inexpensive Benadryl! And it worked! Every day she takes Benadryl along with a prescription drug called Zofran. After 4 months of absolute misery, she is able to eat and drink without vomiting. The only drawback is that the Benadryl makes her extrememly drowsy. So she is functioning in very slow motion. But we are grateful that she can get out of bed. She has gained some weight and seems to be getting some strength back. Thankfully, tests reveal that her baby is doing well. If you know of a young pregnant woman who is experiencing the symptoms of hyperemesis, take her to a doctor or hospital immediately. Not only is hyperemesis a dangerous conditon but it disrupts one's daily activities, career and even relationships. Hyperemesis can last throughout the entire pregnancy or for just a few months. There does not seem to be any fast and sure cure. Luckily for us, Benadryl was the answer. Sphere: Related Content

All Time Favorite Beatles Tune

What's your most favorite Beatle's song of all time? Impossible to choose? I agree. I don't think there is a Beatles tune that I do not like. I love them all. But two of my favorites are: Yesterday and She loves you, ya ya ya. Michael Jackson may have been the King of Pop but the Beatles will always rule. Their songs will live forever. Let's hear your responses. Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Boomer Zoomers

Retirement isn't what it used to be. Used to be, you got your retirement gold watch, moved to a little bungalow in Florida or Arizona, played at golf, ate the cheap, early-bird restaurant dinners and complained about how hot it was. You became horribly bored. And then you died.

Today millions of baby boomers are choosing not to retire in the same way as their parents did. Back in the day, retirement like death and taxes, was inevitable. Now it's a well-thought out process often referred to as the retirement renaissance. Baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, are making bold and exciting choices as to how they will live the next stages of their lives.

We're healthier and we're living longer and stronger. As a result, we have the energy and drive to recharge our lives into productive, stimulating and creative new directions. Many of us are switching gears and trying something totally different. We're bungie jumping, learning to fly airplanes, riding motorcycles, zip lining and hang gliding. Several friends of mine have entered and finished 10 K races to celebrate their 60th birthdays. Many of us are becoming entrepreneurs at age 60. We're starting our own businesses, opening EBay stores, blogging and Facebooking. Multitudes of boomers choose to continue working even if their old jobs are no longer viable or available. They are pursuing new interests, turning hobbies into profitable endeavors, going back to school to learn new skills, and have you checked out all the fascinating boomer websites? For example, here's a couple of scintillating YOU Tube sites: and

The boomer generation has always been bold. And now we refuse to grow old. At least we refuse to grow old without a fight. We are redefining aging. Somebody even coined a new name for us: Zoomers. It means boomers with zip. Zipsters---the new hipsters. We are rethinking our priorities and looking for love online. We are not giving up on our dreams. We are setting new goals and challenges for ourselves. We've always had spunk and fearlessness and ingenuity. It's true by now, some of us may be getting a little wobbly. Many of us have bought that winter place in Florida. But that's not stopping us from exploring new adventures, discovering new friends and interesting pursuits and nurturing our souls as well as our communities. We've still got it, my friends. Rock on, Zoomers. Rock on. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, July 20, 2009

Ashton Kutcher

I can't explain it, I don't know why
But Ashton Kutcher is my kind of guy.

I'm happily married to a wonderful fellow
But Ashton Kutcher turns me to jello.

He's tall and he's lanky and wears his jeans well
His hair's always messy but he still rings my bell.

He's got a weird sense of humor and enjoys a good punk
He's cool and he's hip; an adoreable hunk.

My friends say he's a baby and needs a sitter
But I remind them, he's the King of Twitter.

If he won the likes of Demi Moore's heart
He must have something that sets him apart

I like his nonchalant, free spirit style
He's kind of quirky but I love his smile.

What is it about his sexy dark eyes
That render me numb and hypnotize?

Call me wacky, call me confused
But I'd love to see all his tatoos.

You may think I'm in a delusional mood
But Ashton Kutcher is one sweet dude.

And I'm willing to bet he's a pretty good smoocher
I've got a sick crush on Ashton Kutcher.

Who do you have a secret crush on? Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, July 19, 2009

An Orderly Life

I believe in the power of personal self ORGANIZATION. It can be an amazingly effective, life-changing force. Do you know someone whose life is in disarray? Is their world a constant drama? Are they always late? Never prepared? Forgetful? Sloppy? Disorganized? Continually making excuses? Unhappy?
I am convinced that living an orderly life contributes to a stable, happy, fulfilled well-being. Disorder can come from outside forces but often it stems from lack of self worth. When you do not value yourself, you often neglect what belongs to you. You become unhappy. Unhappiness breeds discontent which leads to hatred. Hatred can erupt into chaos. Chaos and lack of understanding start wars.

Organization leads to a calming, peaceful existence. Organization creates convenience. A place for everything and everything where you can find it in seconds. Convenience saves time. Saving time allows you more opportunity to do other things. Opportunity affords you choices. When you have time to make choices you gain a better understanding of situations and of people. When you make choices you end up with consequences that can be good or not so good. How you respond to those consequences or circumstances shapes your life. We've all missed golden opportunities or made bad choices. We each must deal with the results of our choices. Stop blaming others. Stop blaming yourself. Stop wallowing in self pity. Take responsibility for your own actions. Start moving forward. What's done is done and over. Let it go. The good news is that you can take an unpleasant circumstance and turn it around for the better. But first you must organize your situation. Clean it up. Figure it out. Determine your priorities. Declutter your world. Unclutter your mind. Whatever is not working for you---remove it. Whatever or whoever is not leading you to where you ultimately want to be---ciao baby. Throw it out. Disengage. Simplify your life. Focus. Focus. Focus. Then organize. You will soon see remarkable, positive changes in your life.

After you have organized your personal life, your surroundings, your stuff, your priorities and your goals, you will eventually observe a dramatic transformation. You will be on time for your own life. People who are late, are selfish. You will no longer be selfish or self-involved. You will have time to give yourself to others. You will have plenty of time to be spontaneous. You will discover opportunities you've never had before. You will find freedom. You will become a better person. You will have quality time for friends and loved ones. You will actually be able to remember birthdays and mail greeting cards well ahead of time. You will have postage stamps in the house and know precisely where they are located. When your life is positive, you become happier. If you are happy, those around you will be happy too. It's not Pollyanna. It's not a smiley face fantasy. It's a thoroughly constructive process that takes time, thoughtful contemplation, self-reflection and determination. Think about how you want to live. Where you want to live. Who your truest friends are. Is it time to organize your chaos, fulfill your goals and improve your life?
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Mark Sanford: A Two TimingTango Affair

There's a gal named Maria
She's from Argentina
And she's got a lover
He is the guvnor
Of South Carolina
He's muy fina
Ah yi yi yi---I do declare
It's a two timin' Tango affair.

But their love's on the skids
Cuz he's got a wife and some kids
Though he still likes her body
She's his sweet Latin hotty.
He sends her his love via email
Viva Buenos Aires, adios Appalachian Trail.

They sipped Margaritas
In corner cantinas
Now he'll get subpoenas
From his state and his wife
Oh what a life.

So full of raw passion
But he's turning ashen
Cuz the whole world is aware
He had a two timin' Tango affair.

Flushed with romancing
Imagine them dancing
As they gyrated the rumba
Or swayed to the samba
Tender whispers, illicit love---
His constituents wondered: WHERE'S THE GUV?

He's a debonair dreamer
A cad and a schemer
The guvnor from Dixie isn't too smart
He let Buenos Aires capture his heart.

Can he be forgiven
For recklessly livin'?
Has he danced his last Tango,
Ate his last mango
From the forbidden tree?
Will Buenos Aires set him free?
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Treasury Czar Forgets to Pay Taxes

Dear Mr. President:
Your new administration's just begun
Yet Congress is doing like they've always done
Once again they got the public screwed
They voted in that new Treasury dude
Who didn't pay taxes for 4 stinking years
What would happen if all of us were tax mutineers?
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Friday, July 17, 2009

They Bailed Out the Big Guys, But What About Us?

I'm a poor old lady with lots to lose
Fixed income but I've paid my dues
And now I'm singin' the bailout blues.
Sometimes I feel like throwing my shoes
At those bumbling, billionaire Wall Street yahoos.

They screwed things up but what do they care
If the rest of us live in doom and despair?
Congress gave them trillions out of thin air
But I can't afford new underwear.

I'm just a little old granny on main Street
Doing my best to make ends meet
But I confess, I'm overstressed
If I don't pay my mortgage, I'll be repossessed.

Woe is me, I'm mad as can be
Congress went on a spending spree
But they forgot about folks like you and me
Isn't there anyone we can trust?
They bailed out the big guys, but what about us?

Makes you wanna scream, makes you wanna cuss
They threw us good folk under the bus.
Now there's just one thing we all wanna know
Where in the heck did that money go?

Find me a doctor and call him quick
I think I'm gonna be financially sick.
Savings gone, my life's chaotic
I live on Tums and probiotics.

Sanjay Gupta, make us well
Save us from this living hell.
Doctor Sanjay, cure our ills
Give us all free Prozac pills.

Every day the news is grim
Oh what a mess this country's in.
Unemployment, high inflation
Got no money for medication
Can't afford a spa vacation,
Cost of bread gives me constipation.

I can't see Russia from my house, no less
But I can find my way home without a GPS
Life has gotten so complex
Now they message text instead of sex.

It's all about Facebook, Myspace, Twitter
Paula Dean bakes a mean corn fritter.
While politicians spew and sputter
She stirs in another tub of butter.

How sweet a world we could surely make
If we all sat 'round and ate her Red Velvet cake.
But no time for food; it costs too much.
Where is Obama's magic touch?

Whatcha gonna do, Barach Obama
To end this painful melodrama?
Change, change is all we hear
But I got no change to buy me a beer.

Fist bump the missus and let's get moving.
This country needs a lot of improving.
Global warming, Mid East aggression.
Hire Bill Gates to end the recession.

Yah, send Bill to Capital Hill. He's got clout.
He's got enough money to bail the whole world out.
Then fire off a press release
And put Oprah in charge of world wide peace.

Does Hilary Clinton know what to do?
Ask Brad Pitt for his point of view.
It's not that we want somethin' for nothin'
But we're not growing younger like Benjamin Button.

Tax cut, kiss my butt
It ain't enough to feed my mutt.
Zillions squandered on executive players
Zippo left for desperate tax payers!

Democratic congress is gettin' cozy
Wipe that smirk off, Nancy Pelosi.
You wanna tax anything that moves
But I believe we have a right to choose.

Yackety yack,
Congress gives us nothing but jack
I've always tried to be self reliant
But don't give MY tax money to a corporate giant.

The stimulus ain't working; it's a friggin ballyhoo.
So now they wanna try bailout Number Two.
It makes you wanna scream; it makes you wanna cuss
They bailed out the big guys but what about us?

You can't put lipstick on a pig
But you can drill for oil on an offshore rig
While the uber rich sip pina coladas
Bin Laden's likely holed up in the Bahamas.

So fist bump the Missus and let's get groovin'
This country needs a lot of improving
End our strife and aggravation
It's time to save this once great nation.

And there's still one thing we all wanna know

Money, money, money, money, money, money,
Show us the money, honey.
Show us the money.

Sphere: Related Content

What is Wrong with the World Today?

What is wrong with the world today?
It doesn't make sense in any way.
Who's your daddy?
He's a shmuck
The ice is melting
We're out of luck.

Corporate giants get bailed out
While honest folks go without
Unemployment, high inflation
This country needs resuscitation.

Global warming, air pollution
Economic revolution?
Where's Obama's grand solution?

Oprah, Oprah, she's the one
She know how to get things done.
Go Oprah. Go Oprah. Go Oprah.

Run, run, he's got a gun
He'll shoot your brains out just for fun.
Get down. Get down. There's a bomb around.
It's gonna blow us to funky town.

Mortar shells and terror squad
Murder in the name of God
Improvised explosive device
Goodness gracious---that's not nice.

Wife beaters, corporate cheaters
Child molesters, crazy leaders
Gangs and drugs, sex and greed
Blind ambition to succeed.

Stimulus billions had banks overjoyed
But most of us are still unemployed.
The rich get cocky and seldom share
The rest of us can't afford health care.

Bang, Bang, Golly Gee
Who killed decency?
What happened to responsibility?
Slog your blog and sling your bling
No respect for anything.

I loved the Beatles but they're half dead
Sergeant Pepper got shot in the head.
Paul McCartney---I still love you.
Isn't there anything you can do/

Happiness is a warm gun---yah, yah, yah.

Politicians pass the buck
Capital Hill runs amuck
Nuclear waste, internet smut
Drill a tatoo upon your butt.

Identity stealers, political nitwits,
Wheeler dealers, celebrity misfits,
Hypocrites and ecstasy bars
What's next---Sara Palin dancing with the stars?

Middle East-- where's the peace?
A bloody war that will not cease.
AIDS invades like death crusades
Eight year olds toss hand grenades.

Daddy, Daddy, get outta the way,
I'm gonna blow up a bus today.

What is wrong with the world today?
It doesn't make sense in any way.
King of Pop died; lots of people cried
But who gives a damn about genocide.

Boomers ruled but now we're scientologists
We've got RVs and gastroenterologists
Who is left to give peace a chance
Brittany and Paris in their underpants?

What about our sons and daughters
Can they survive these troubled waters?
We've all gone mad or so it seems
Who screwed up our hopes and dreams?

Hey dude, we're screwed, We're really, really screwed.

We're in a black hole, out of control
The ice is melting, save your soul.
The ice is melting, save your soul.

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