Browsing All Posts published on »December, 2014«

Joan Larsen’s Travel: Spending the New Year at Swan Lake

December 31, 2014

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By Joan Larsen   It is the New Year – the new year of 2015, celebrated throughout the world with the traditional crowds always seen, fireworks lighting up the skies in every direction, laughter and excitement as there always is. But we, the people of our world, are far more subdued this year. If we […]

Pondering Things Beyond the Earth

December 29, 2014

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It’s Lila’s last post of 2014… time for a little pondering about big things beyond the Earth (mainly because we are probably all pretty tired of hearing about all the human-inflicted calamities on our little planet this year). The news this year has been full of all kinds of space-related stuff: humanity has managed to […]

What Is Forgiveness, and Is It Always a Good Thing?

December 26, 2014

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for-give verb : to stop feeling anger toward (someone who has done something wrong) : to stop blaming (someone) : to stop requiring payment of (money that is owed) To err is human; to forgive, divine. – Alexander Pope The other day, I ran across some kind of holiday sermon on the radio. The speaker […]

Joan Larsen Encore: Spending Christmas in Antarctica

December 24, 2014

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By Joan Larsen At this season, as another Christmas draws near, we find there are moments when we look back — back at a lifetime of memories of Christmas past . . . many times wishing they could be the simpler times we once had   I speak for all of us, longing – I […]

A New Low in Toys for Girls: Feces Are Magical and Fun!

December 22, 2014

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The old baby dolls that could “go potty” were apparently not enough for today’s girls, so now we have dolls that crap rainbows and jewels. I have written previously that as a child, I despised my plastic baby dolls and much preferred my brother’s toys. I thought the baby dolls were sort of creepy, and […]

Dinner Movie Theater: Nothing Like Dinner Theater

December 19, 2014

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… and I didn’t even really like dinner theater, either. Lila does not often attend live theater, but way back in college, I had occasion to attend a dinner-theater production. It was a formal affair, with coats and ties and crisp tablecloths and candlelight, all very subdued to allow for almost full attention to the […]

Joan Larsen Encore: The Child and the Robbers

December 17, 2014

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I have a story to tell, a tale that lies within me, waiting to come out… a seemingly improbable story that happened in my own family… a story that has marked me, marked my family.  Like it or not, TV and the media have made us voyeurs in the most horrific stories of break-ins, robberies […]

The Torture Report: Why Are We Acting So Surprised?

December 15, 2014

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On Veterans Day, we wrote about how un-engaged and unaware many Americans are concerning the use of our military. This extends to the larger picture of US actions in the world. So now the so-called “Torture Report” is out, and we’re acting all surprised and horrified, as if there was never any awareness of this […]

Lauriate Roly: L’Arbre de Noel – The Bigger, the… Cheaper?

December 12, 2014

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By Lauriate Roly I couldn’t believe the sleek, spotless, black stretch limo coming into my driveway.  Only because it surprised me;  but I knew in an instant that Cheryl from Brussels, the “Belgium Bombshell”  was back in town. She had business to do in Montreal and needed to see me first,  so naturally, since I […]

Joan Larsen Presents: A True and Inspiring Holiday Tale to Remember – Sprinkling Stars on the Life of a Child

December 10, 2014

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By Joan Larsen Sometimes, a single story can change our lives. Though this personal tale takes place in the Christmas season, it is one that – once heard – is remembered forever.   The glories of nature in the Bitterroot Valley of western Montana would be hard to match.  But in that wilderness live families whose […]

Rape Allegations Should Require Immediate Police Involvement

December 8, 2014

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They say that women don’t lie about rape. But they do, and that hurts victims. There has been much wailing and gnashing of teeth over the now-discredited and retracted Rolling Stone article about a horrific gang-rape in a fraternity house on the UVA campus.   Victim advocates lament that this will make it harder for other […]

Grand Jury Procedures for Cops Should be the Same as for Anyone Else

December 5, 2014

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The police already operate under a different set of rules; that should make them more accountable for their actions, not less. The police are sent among us, armed with deadly force, to keep order and peace. This should not absolve them of the harm they may do in the conduct of their duties; just the […]

Alice Friedemann: Just Off the Beaten Path in California – Wildflowers of the Carizzo Plain

December 3, 2014

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By Alice Friedemann About every 20 years the Carrizo plains, between Fresno and Paso Robles, bursts into fields of brilliant flowers so beautiful you won’t want to go back to work – suddenly you realize you’ve wasted your life and you’d rather picnic forever in fields of popcorn flowers, goldfields, and orange wind poppies. Even […]

Before You Buy a Drone For Christmas… You May Need a Pilot’s License

December 1, 2014

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Once again, the ignorant and the reckless ruin everyone’s fun.   Last spring at my Dad’s old house, I looked out to see someone poking around suspiciously on the road in front of the house. I’m not shy; I went to investigate. It was a real estate photographer, hired by the neighbor to shoot aerial […]