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Rated: E · Book · Experience · #2050107
A Journal to impart knowledge and facts
July 22, 2015

I'm going to start today to record on a daily basis whatever happens to strike my fancy. So, it is a very cool breezy day. I just posted 5 short book reviews to The Monthly Reading Challenge. I'm suppose to put away some winter wood today from the woodpile outside but I'm playing hookey from work to write so starting this blog will get done.

I'm having a daily fight with a flock of English Sparrows that are trying to take over my barn. They are making a terrible mess so they have to go. I have destroyed several nests so far they don't leave but they get out of the barn when I am around. I'm just starting the fight so I guess I don't know how far I have to go to discourage them.

I'm trying not to spread myself to thin on WDC because I find so many things that are interesting here and I am trying to work on a new story. I really enjoy sitting at my desk with a cup of tea and reading blogs on WDC.

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January 11, 2023 at 1:20pm
January 11, 2023 at 1:20pm
For Andre the Blog Monkeys Banana Bar

Merit Badge in Anon-Y-Monkey's Badge
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   Thank You For Participating In The  March Musical Monkey Madness  In  [Link To Item #1985857] . I really enjoyed all your entries. This merit badge is for completing at least five of the ten prompts!   Owl with signature

Week 2 / Category 3/ prompt: Have you ever gotten tipsy, inebriated or drunk? If you remember what happened tell us about it. If you don't remember make something up. If you never were tell us why you should not be banned from the banana bar?

I'm confused. Do you Bann people from the Banana Bar? Does that mean if people don't drink alcohol, you are not friendly?

As for the first part of the question Yes. I've been drunk once. Tipsy twice as I remember. It takes a great deal of Alcoholic drink to mess my system up.

I like wine better than hard liquor, although probably Banana Daiquiri's would appeal to me if I still had an urge to imbibe.

When I was first married, I was 18 with no experience with alcoholic drinks. My first husband was used to drinking and playing cards with friends. He was also unimpressed with my refusal to drink beer or other liquors. One time we went to his friend's house the other family suggested we play cards. Poker to be exact. Every time you lost a hand you had to have a shot of Tequila. I lost a lot. Richard had to lead me out the door and pour me into the car to get home. Truthfully, I always thought the group just wanted to see me get drunk for the sport of it. It was the only time the group ever drank alcohol when I was with them.

Nothing much happened except we were living in an apartment over a farmhouse near the Air Force Base. Before, we entered the house Richard warned me not to make a scene since the family was entertaining guests. Of course, I had to yell Hi to everyone as soon as we entered the door and started up the staircase to our apartment. Yelling and waving as I was urge upward by my husband. I remember he said," I told you not to make a scene." Huh?

Another time after we moved home, we delivered some Christmas cookies to my aunt and Uncle. Cookies which my uncle had delivered to our house earlier when I was not home. We had a Merry Christmas drink before we left home. Richard's idea, which I did not refuse. I was not really drunk but tipsy might describe it. My Aunt said with disgust. "They've both been drinking."

The third and last time was the summer after Richard died. I went to visit a different Aunt. I had an aunt on my mother's side of the family that I liked. She took care of my brother and I summers when my dad was working. We would stay with her all week and go home for the weekends. She was a drinking person. After I had been in the house for about 10 minutes, she offered to mix me a drink.

At first, I refused but, when she continued to press me, I said O.K. My uncle was by the counter where she was mixing the drink. I heard him as he leaned over and said, "Don't make it so strong." To which my aunt replied, "Mind your own business." Once again, I was not drunk but, the drink was strong enough to make me muddled. So, I left. And I never went back. I was careful to drive home slowly, it was all back country roads, so I never met anyone along the way. I stopped by the woods and cried for a while, because I felt my aunt was trying to get me drunk for some reason and I don't trust relatives on either side of my family.

Since then, I have had a glass of wine or one mixed drink inside my home a few times, until I was about 30. The boys were growing up. I felt we should try to eliminate any kind of alcoholic problems before they finished growing. We had a wine dumping ceremony in the front yard and no alcohol in the house since.

The grandparents of my two older sons were both recovering alcoholics at one time, Richard's parents. My mother-in-law told me they kept a beer in their refrigerator to remind them what alcohol was doing to their family. My first husband had stopped at a bar on his way home from work, before he died, when he fell asleep and hit a tree with my car.

On my father's side of the family all the children were taught not to drink alcohol. However, at Christmases when families rotated to celebrate holidays; all my father's brother's homes had bottles of hard liquor, or wine stored under the beds in the master bedroom. Plus, there were always liquor bottles in the garbage when I stayed with my cousin over night for a school function.

My dad did not drink but, once when he visited my aunt she offered him a beer, which he took and drank. I was not very old but, I asked him why he was drinking beer he said it was to be social. That social drinking was permissible.

Every person has to choose in life. It isn't' up to me to tell you when or how much or what you should drink. I do wish it was that easy for some people to give up anything that can harm their life alcohol, or drugs, or any other problem of any kind. But it isn't. Blogging with the banana bar is fun. I have no criticizem about what others decide to do, but if you don't want me here to feel free to say so openly. I'll just go away. I also have coffee drinking relatives that don't believe in drinking tea. A hot cup of tea would be good right now.

P.S. Cheers was one of my favorite programs at one time. The lyrics of the song mean more than the alcohol served at the bar. Sorry Andre' I know Banana Daiquiri are part of your health habits.

Word Count:1011 all word counts are done on WDC blog
January 11, 2023 at 10:44am
January 11, 2023 at 10:44am
For Andre the Blog Monkey's Banana Bar

Week 2 / Category 2 prompt: If you won the lottery, raffle or a gamble (e.g, slot machine) what percentage would you give to Charity, if any what type of Charity would it be?

This book is a Hoot! }

As a child I was taught that I should give 10 percent. This was a teaching in the church I grew up in, I think. Pretty much as a teenager I earned some money baby-sitting once in a while and cleaned house and worked in the garden at my aunt's home.

I lived almost all weekends and some weekdays with my aunt and uncle. They paid me for the work I did. My uncle tried to teach me the value of earning. They often took me roller skating and I wanted my own skates and skate box. My earnings from them went to the project of buying my own skates. With other earnings from a few babysitting jobs, I tried to give my tithe.

In my wanderings through research for Journalism classes, I came across a statement, that a lot of wealthy people give 1 percent of their earnings to charity. One percent of one million is ten thousand. In any event at the time, I thought the percentage for a millionaire or billionaire was kind of stingy.

During my first marriage. My husband gave from his salary through the Air force. Whatever the percentage was it was taken out when checks were issued. I only had one job at that time, and it lasted one week. When he died, I tried to tithe his life insurance money. I was criticized for the donations.

I stopped going to church during a period of time burdened down with raising children on small salaries and running a farm without income. I forgot about tithing, just gave as I found places to give, which were the salvation Army Kettle on the street at Christmas, a dollar to a child collecting for a sport in school, just small amounts here and there.

When we went to church again, I gave as the plate was passed during Sunday service and still the small places where people were asking for donations for some project.

Some years ago, the local rural electric company started a program for people who get behind in their electric bills. It is rounding up. If your bill is 94. 15 dollars and you pay 95, the extra is put into the fund to help others who are having trouble paying. This happens at Walmart once in a while, when there is a drive for the food banks. If 50 people round up by 50 cents, you have collected 25.00 dollars for charity. Sometimes the post office collects canned goods for the local food bank. I put out some canned goods. I really like to use the rounding up programs. A small amount goes out without notice. It ends up in a bigger pot of contributions.

One of the reasons I stopped giving was because of small salaries that did not reach our needs as a family. I gave the children growing up very small allowances. They did chores after school and always helped me with farm work. They never earned what, that help was worth in dollars. We struggled with home heating costs. I canned and froze supplies all summer to keep us eating healthy food.

One of the reasons I quit giving out money because money coming in never changes and the needs inside of my family were never easy to meet. For a while If it meant us or them, I chose us.

Now if I won a lottery or other monies, it would depend on how much after taxes I would get, and what my needs are. I am presently hoping before January to start a giving program in a very small way.

I give at Christmas to St. Jude Children's research hospital. They don't seem to resent the small gifts I send. I am trying to start before the end of January to give small amounts to them 6 months of the year, and to the Anna Shelter. No guarantee I will be able to follow through on this plan.

Anna Shelter is a no kill animal shelter. They have given care to several animals I took into my home. a large percentage of animals, cats, dogs, and birds I have taken in different times are someone else's cast offs.

Two other places make me wish I could just give are the Wounded Warriors Project. Also, there is a group who collect money to drill wells in Africa. So, villages will have fresh water supplies.

Giving is an interesting subject. Over the years I have watched news about big donations to different needs. Also, about the donations to large organizations being used improperly sometimes. When government has to step in to reorganize it is a shame.

I believe by paying my bills and keeping us off the welfare rolls it is a help to society. Even if it means I am left with not enough to give a large amount. Our television is inundated with commercials about people collecting money for their organizations. Sometimes it is so impersonal.

Word count: 872
January 10, 2023 at 2:03pm
January 10, 2023 at 2:03pm
Andre's the Blog Monkey's Banana Bar -- Week 2 January 2023 - Rated E

Owl with signature

Prompt, Category 1: The Pros and Cons mechanical vs. wooden pencils.

Written by Judith D Mitchell (Apondia)

The word pencil may have been taken from a French word pincel which means little paintbrush.

Wooden pencils have been around longer than I have. The discovery of graphite near Cumbia, England in 1500 started the pencil era. The mineral Graphite is a crystalline form of the element carbon.

Graphite was first used to mark sheep. Graphite was split into sticks and wrapped with a piece of sheep skin than tied with a string. The Italians decided to encase the graphite into two pieces of wood.

The HMS Pandora sunk in 1791. An early example of a mechanical pencil was found on board the Pandora.

The first patent for a mechanical pencil was issued to Sampson Mardon and John Issac Hawkins 1822. The history of mechanical pencil manufactured in various forms extends from 1823 to now.

Two types of mechanical pencils were developed about the same historical time. Screw based was developed in Japan by Hayakawa. Ratchet based was developed by Charles R. Keeran.

The common wooden pencil that we are all familiar with since grade school is a No.2 lead pencil which usually has an eraser on one end. It needs to be sharpened when first used and then sharpened again when the point becomes dull or worn away. This means a sharpener must be present. Sharpeners come in different types. some are handheld some fasten to a wall or side of a desk.

As manufacturing progressed, so did the use of the graphite in pencils. Even though we call it lead it was always graphite. No lead was actually involved. Now the graphite we use is a combination of graphite dust mixed with clay or wax. What the graphite is mixed with depends on what type of pencil it is being used in, and for what type of job the pencil is being used.

A no.2 very sharp wooden pencil can make a very thin line on the paper, as long as it stays sharp. The written line can vary somewhat according to the sharpness of the pencil.

Leads in a mechanical pencil come in different sizes, 0.3 ,0.5, 0.7 are the most normal. When the pencil writes, the size of the point continues to remain an accurate sharpness as it wears down.

When the lead in the mechanical pencil wears away. a new lead can be placed in the pencil. When the wooden pencil wears down you replace the whole pencil.

At one time the color yellow was considered royal or respectful in China. USA manufacturers used this idea as a selling point and painted the common pencil on the market yellow. Although now, you can find pencils specifically manufactured in other painted colors. The common yellow pencil is still the basic pencil on the market.

There is no end to the variety of colors available, in which mechanical pencils are sold. Mechanical pencils also vary in size and materials used to make them. They can be either metal or plastic.

Today we look at the importance of materials with which a product is manufactured. The average wooden pencil is about 71/2 inches long. One pencil can draw a line 35 miles long or write 45,000 words. Then you throw away the stub which usually has left over eraser and a piece of metal on the end. 82 billion trees are cut each year to make wooden pencils.

Mechanical pencils can stay relevant for a long time. Just change the lead and write on. Presently, the common ones on the market are about 6 inches long. However, some mechanical pencils are being made as disposable. You write until the lead is gone, then throw the entire pencil away. We know that one of the most important recycle problems exists from disposable plastic.

Some mechanical pencils now come with erasers on the end, or they may be packaged with a special handy eraser.

Leads vary, are approximately 2 1/2 inches in length and are sold in small plastic cases by 30 leads or less.

Prices vary for the different types of pencils. Yellow wooden pencils can be found in any shopping center. They range from small packs of 3 or 4 to larger packs of 30 to 96. Prices seem to be higher in smaller packages from .21 cents per pencil to .33 cents per pencil. Larger packages, 96 in a pack can be as low as 8.5 cents per pencil.

Mechanical pencil prices range higher. Since they come in many brands and are packaged for different uses. The normal in places like Walmart and Amazon show 40 count packages can have a cost of approximately $2.94 per pencil. Prices like this can range higher or lower as you look at the different brands available or shop in different places. Mechanical pencils have become more available as the years move forward since 2000.

Whichever you chose as your writing tool. Both types of pencils are readily available.


{link:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mechanical pencil:}

Word Count:855

January 9, 2023 at 3:58pm
January 9, 2023 at 3:58pm
owl for signature useFor BCoF

I am looking forward to as many sunshiny days as I can experience. Because we get a lot of cloudy days during January, February, and March. I am not looking forward to grocery shopping during the winter months because I don't get out to shop very much in the winter months and shopping can be difficult during snowy weather.

I walk the dogs in cold weather but, I have a small dog who is 18 years old. He gets cold in deep snow, so I don't like to take him out then. He does not like to stay behind when my larger dog goes out.
January 9, 2023 at 3:58pm
January 9, 2023 at 3:58pm
owl for signature useFor BCoF

I am looking forward to as many sunshiny days as I can experience. Because we get a lot of cloudy days during January, February, and March. I am not looking forward to grocery shopping during the winter months because I don't get out to shop very much in the winter months and shopping can be difficult during snowy weather.

I walk the dogs in cold weather but, I have a small dog who is 18 years old. He gets cold in deep snow, so I don't like to take him out then. He does not like to stay behind when my larger dog goes out.
January 6, 2023 at 10:32am
January 6, 2023 at 10:32am
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” —Martin Luther King, Jr.

Your thoughts....

owl for signature use

I think this was written by a person who was making a difference for many people. A modern-day encourager.

What Martin Luther King, Jr said was inspirational and applies to many facets in the life of people. I read a lot and the nonfiction stories about scientists making a difference in medicine, ecologists making a difference in cleaning the oceans are often not changes you hear about in the news.

All kinds of studies about the earth are turning up interesting facts we don't think about often. I read that trees join their roots to a tree that is failing to feed it so it can continue growing.

People of all natures have struggled to make a difference with knowledge.

I like the quotes made by Martin Luther King Jr. because they remind us of the struggles all people go through to make a difference in life.

Change is difficult. Only possible if we keep moving forward.

A list of changes in conflict: Microwave Ovens, Electric automobiles, Corn for fuel for Automobiles and heat, prices of prescription medicine, abortion, gay marriage, student loan payoffs, even Christmas trees. I bet you can add more to this list depending on what changes are happening in the area where you live?


January 4, 2023 at 2:21pm
January 4, 2023 at 2:21pm
For Andre the Blog Monkey's Banana Bar


Manx Cat from Japan

Category 3:
If you were a monkey would you be offended by being linked with more monkeys and a barrel as always causing chaos. If you lie and say you don't cause it? Prove it?

I'm not sure about the monkey part of this. I searched what I really know about monkeys then looked for some facts on the web.

Monkeys are known for their chaos forming ways in many cities on the earth. Monkeys who leave their natural habitat to forage for food in human environments are known to develop blood diseases and hypertension. They also attack houses in groups. If people do not remove them from a house they can attack the residents, break furniture and dishes and generally trash the place. There are statistics on the web about how many people are bitten or killed by monkey attacks each year.

Surely, monkeys are offended by the fact that humans have taken over the monkey's natural environment. They can no longer stay in the jungle which humans have trashed to build new houses and cleared to grow crops. So, they attack homes and gardens and crops. It's a united effort to express themselves. Monkey rage and creating chaos is their natural way to tell the truth.

Have I ever caused chaos? Yes. In the 1980's I spent some time in a library researching truth. I had been reading about truth in the Bible. My family has always been discussed with me for being so blatantly truthful. It is in my nature to tell what I know, when asked.

After my research I always decided to tell the truth if I know what it is. So, my nature is still intact. I'm not necessarily popular. It helps to know when and how much truth to let fly.

Some people lie to protect themselves; some people lie to hurt other people or cover up other lies.

In the New Testament truth is one of the weapons of the spirit. It is often if not always met with anger and resentment. However, it also clears the air in conversation. The after affects are generally the same as slaying a blood enemy. The death caused by telling the truth is the death of a well-established lie. When the lie dies the effect of giving pain to someone also dies. You can breathe easily knowing all the lies cannot hold anyone prisoner anymore. You are breathing clean air. Old lies are hard to pierce even with truth. Sometimes it takes just living to prove the difference between truth and lies.

The argument is always should you always tell the truth? Circumstances will have to be the give and take. Real truth will win freedom every time. Real truth never fails to make a change for the better. For a while you can't always see the results.

Telling the truth can cause chaos. Does chaos come just before a major change?

word count: 495
January 4, 2023 at 1:14pm
January 4, 2023 at 1:14pm
For Andre the Blog Monkey's banana bar:


Manx Cat from Japan

Category 2: What are You doing to save the environment from overuse, pollution, or affecting the climate?
Over the years this has become an idea that we focus on more in a serious way. I took pre-environmental biology in college and some bio-geography courses. All had different focus on things that need to be done to aid the health of the earth.

We changed to using corn as our main source of heat. Corn is a renewable resource. For many years we burned wood. Corn can be grown as a renewable quicker than a tree. It is also easier to grow in a controlled environment than trees. It is easier to harvest than trees and creates less air pollution.

In order to combat the plastic problem, I switched to Earth Breeze Detergent. It is detergent with the water element removed. It comes in a paper folder which can be recycled. The sheets of detergent can be cut up with scissors depending on how much detergent you use per load.

At Christmas, Earth Breeze also ran a campaign for dishwasher detergent which is a small cube. I have eliminated the plastic bottles in which I once bought these types of soaps. Earth Breeze is a dependable cleanser. Plus, it is now delivered through the mail.

For many years I have been using a manufactured Christmas Tree to decorate my home. It is reusable year after year. Mine is close to 40 or some years old. A teacher once told me it takes 70 mature trees to make enough oxygen for one person to breathe. Lack of oxygen can cause you to think irrationally. Planting trees is easier than cutting them down and adds to the planet's health.

At one time we had recycling for our local township. We could take the recycles to the township building as we accumulated it. Now, that is no longer true. Recently, a new alternative to how we recycle has been made available so, we are soon going to be able to recycle again.

At one time in the 1970's there was a dairy farmer who had a setup on his farm to sell milk in plastic one-quart bags. It was shut down some time ago. I wish it was still up and running because the milk bottles we accumulate are more difficult to recycle than the bags were.

The Avatar movie we saw ended with a reference to Albert Einstein's quote: "Energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be changed from one form into another."

I wrote some articles for Journalistic Intentions about recycling plastic from the Oceans of the Earth. It has become a dire situation affecting water, sea, and land creatures in Oceans, rivers and streams.
Recycled plastic can be turned into 2 by 4's, furniture, insulation, and many other useable products. It is a beginning to a new way of building and living in simpler energy efficient way.

Recycling is an energy renewable project. We should all be involved in it.

Word Count: 509

January 4, 2023 at 11:25am
January 4, 2023 at 11:25am
For Andre the Blog Monkeys' banana bar.:


Manx Cat from Japan

Category 1: If cars were banned would you ride a horse or a bike or something else?

Specifically, this says cars. I would have a multitude of ways to get around. I live in a rural place. The nearest shopping is five miles away. That takes about 10 to 20 minutes to get to riding a bicycle. Longer to get back, because there is a lot of downhill going to the town, which means a lot of up hills coming back.

There are two other places I can reach for small amounts of supplies. A Dollar General a couple miles south of us. A smaller village 5 miles in another direction with a Family Dollar store. Other places are 10 or 15 miles away which would have proper shopping with Walmart and other grocery stores.

If motor scooters or other small, motorized vehicles are available, I would be able to use a properly licensed ATV. Because I only go to a town to shop for groceries and other supplies at this time, an ATV would be able to carry multiple boxes or bags of supplies. We may have to keep a snow mobile for rare trips in winter. Although so far only one short lived blizzard has hit us this year.

Banning cars? Does this mean we can no longer order online. And will the delivery of supplies stop. I'm able to can and freeze in summer. I used to raise chickens for eggs, turkeys for the freezer. The family had fresh lamb, goat meat, and venison.

A local potato farmer sells potatoes by the 50 lb. bags in the fall. One bag lasts quite a long time for us now. Dairy goats are quite expensive now. If necessary, I could go back to raising our own goats for dairy and meat.

This would also mean continuing to put up hay in summer for our own use. We still do that with gas and fuel driven machinery.

We live near Amish, and they hire drivers, with automobiles, to take them to area grocery stores.

I could keep a horse and buggy. I have the room and know how to train and drive a horse in harness. A quiet buggy horse could also be used as a saddle horse, with saddle bags, to visit the Dollar General and bring home milk and snacks.

People in this area are used to stocking up for bad weather. Who wants to go shopping in a blizzard. At this time, I only leave home about once a month to shop for groceries.

Monday one of my sons took us to a movie in Erie. We saw Avatar: The Way of Water. Then, stopped at Fridays for dinner. I have not been that far from home since 2019. Probably if they ban automobiles I will rarely go very far from home, but it will not be impossible to deal with. Banning cars will probably mean setting up a delivery system to rural people. We have Wi-Fi, television, Kindles for games, movies, news, and other media.

Some people might move to a town or city in order to be nearer to other people.

There are health clinics 5 miles from us in two different directions. Now, with computers there is also the possibility of direct online contact with doctors.

We heat with corn which has to be delivered by the ton. We usually keep a couple ton at a time which keeps us ahead of the weather by several months. Many of the neighbors heat with wood they have to cut or propane, which is delivered in small tank trucks. It means some type of delivery is inevitable or neighbors will move to a town.

We also have back-up quartz heaters. The corn stoves have small fans that can run on solar power. Quartz heaters are also able to run on solar power.

No matter what happens we will find a way to stay where we are. Taking cars away will decrease the travel abilities but, not stop people from moving around as they have need.

Banning cars may mean bus lines or other types of transportation will be enacted. Noone makes quick changes to society around here. Banning cars sounds too much like banning alcohol. That didn't work either.

Word Count: 721
December 13, 2022 at 11:56am
December 13, 2022 at 11:56am
signature dancing owl

Just a couple updates: Still fighting whatever glitch is affecting whether my computer boots or not. It worked for several days last time then has not worked since. Using K's computer today. So, back to writing by hand since no way to print or save copies or a journal on this computer. Also, no way to post writings. Nevertheless, onward into life's next adventure.

Just a quick tip for those who never did the math. If you read 3 chapters in the Bible a day you will finish the entire Old and New Testament in one year.

I'm grateful for the English grammar help I get when I work on the computer. It corrects mistakes as I go along. Makes life easier.

Merit Badge in News
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For [Link to Book Entry #1024225] Very well written. An eloquent personal account makes what seems to be mere 'news' to others more meaningful.

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