Sunday, May 27, 2018

May Thoughts

     “It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson 

Friday, May 25, 2018

Around OakMeadows


We went to see RBG. It is about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  I thoroughly enjoyed it and learned so much about her.  I so well remember the bad old days when women couldn’t go to medical or law school, when women had to have their husband’s signature to buy a car or take out a loan, when abortions were done In unsanitary conditions by unqualified people. So much of what we take for granted today is due to the work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  I am in awe of her exercise routine.  And I share her appreciation of opera.  I was touched by the crack in her voice when talking about her mother’s death when she was only 17.  An excellent movie, well worth seeing. 

I have been terribly upset about the policy of separating children from their parents as they cross the border into the U.S. seeking refuge.  But other than letting my elected officials know that I think this is an abomination and working to get people with more humanity in positions of authority, it seems that there is nothing I could do.  However, I have decided to go to the Refund Services of Texas Amazon Wishlist and purchase things on the wishlist for them. It’s not much but it is something.  

“The more time we spend on the Trumpian soap opera, the less likely we are to know where we are or what we should do.” David Brooks, NYT

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

May Poetry

The gods are less for their love of praise.
Above and below them all is a spirit that needs nothing
but its own wholeness, its health and ours.
It has made all things by dividing itself.
It will be whole again.
To its joy we come together --
the seer and the seen, the eater and the eaten,
the lover and the loved.
In our joining it knows itself. It is with us then,
not as the gods whose names crest in unearthly fire,
but as a little bird hidden in the leaves
who sings quietly and waits, and sings. 

Monday, May 21, 2018

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Called Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
Please vote no on Gina Haspel as CIA Director.

Thank you note to Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA):
Thank You for your public condemnation of Sec. Carson’s plans to triple rents on poor families. I (and many Americans) share your view that we are called to care for our neighbors. Thank you for speaking up for our country’s most vulnerable. Name, State.
Address: 2021 Lakeshore Dr., Suite 309, New Orleans, LA 70122

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Sent email to Rep. Pete Olson and Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
I am writing to ask that you call for Scott Pruitt to step down as Administrator of the EPA and join the 39 senators and 150 representatives who have already done so. l support leaders who spend taxpayer dollars responsibly and protect environmental health. Thanks.

Sent Thank You note to Reps. Mia Love (R-UT) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL): Thank you for co-sponsoring the bipartisan ASPIRE-TPS Act of 2017. It is part of the American tradition to grant longtime visitors a path to legal, permanent status. Thank you for showing your support for people receiving TPS and their families.
Address (ML): 9067 South 1300 West Suite 101, West Jordan, UT 84088
Address (IR-L): 4960 SW 72 Ave, Suite 208, Miami, FL 33155

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Email to Rep. Pete Olson:
I’m writing to oppose the proposed SNAP work requirements. You must understand how many hours of work, verification, and mandatory appointments it takes for the average hungry American to qualify for SNAP. The Farm Bill (H.R. 2) draft adds additional requirements to report work and hours. 1 in 8 Americans relies on SNAP. These changes will take food out of the mouths of children, elderly people, and people living with chronic illness. Please do not approve the Farm Bill with new hurdles for work requirements intact. SNAP should be a snap.

Thank You note to Bryan Stevenson (founder of Equal Justice Initiative):
Thank You for creating the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, and its twin organization, the Legacy Museum. I support your mission to confront the racial atrocities of the past in order to create paths toward racial reconciliation. Congratulations and thank you for your important work.
Address: 122 Commerce Street, Montgomery, Alabama 36104

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Called Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
Im calling to express my deep concern about HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s plans to triple rent costs for 4.7 million of our nation’s most vulnerable families. His proposal would disproportionately affect seniors, families with children, and people with high medical expenses. I want my tax dollar to support my neighbors in need, so I am asking you to oppose Carson’s plans and stand up for our vulnerable citizens.

Sent Thank You note to Mandy Manning: 
Congratulations on the recognition of 2018 National Teacher of the Year! I was touched by your decision to share with the President letters from your immigrant and refugee students. Your dedication to your students and your message of connection over division is an inspiration to us all.
Address: ℅ Ferris High School, 3020 E. 37th Ave., Spokane, WA 99223

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

I’m calling about ICE, the only law enforcement agency with a detention quota. With ICE detention costing $134 per day per bed, people who pose no risk to the public can be monitored at much lower expense to taxpayers outside of these facilities. The bed quota enriches private prison operators without making us safer. I am requesting that you work to end this mandate that warehouses legal asylum seekers. Thank you.

Sent Thank You note to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT):
Thank you for holding Kirstjen Nielson accountable for false information linking immigrants to terrorism. In a time when voices advocating for truth are few, I appreciate your choice to press this issue. Thank you.
Address: 199 Main Street, 4th Floor, Burlington, VT 05401

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Called Rep. Pete Olson and Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
I am outraged at the inhumane practice of separating children from parents at the border—including those legally seeking asylum protection. I am asking you to do everything in their power to stop this practice that hurts children.

Sent Thank You note to Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA):
Thank for advocating for humane treatment of families immigrating to the US. What ICE is doing to parents and their young children is unacceptable, and I appreciate you pressing Kirstjen Nielson to change this policy.
Address: 10 North Post Street, Suite 600, Spokane, Washington 99201

The Fern House at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

June Menu

June Menu

1. Out
2. Bacon Sandwiches, Oven Fries 
3. Slow Cooker Chicken 
4. Baked Fish, Potatoes, Coleslaw 
5. Chicken-Spaghetti Casserole 
6. Steak, GMP, GB
7. Leftovers 
8. Out
9. Macaroni and Cheese, Corn
10. Schwan’s 
11. Tuna Salad
12. Oven BBQ Chicken, Beans, Coleslaw 
13. Schwan’s 
14. Leftovers 
15. Out
16. Scrambled Eggs, Schwan’s Sausage and Potatoes 
17. Slow Cooker Beef
18. Baked Fish, Potatoes, Coleslaw 
19. Oven Baked Chicken Tenders, Sweet Potatoes, Spinach 
20. Pizza
21. Leftovers 
22. Out
23. CB Hash, CSC
24. Schwan’s 
25. Fried Shrimp, FF, Coleslaw 
26. Schwan's 
27. Spaghetti and Meatballs, Salad 
28. Leftovers 
29. Out 
30. St. Wieners, Corn

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Imperfect People I Admire

Imperfect People I Admire

Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter
Paul Farmer
Barack and Michelle Obama 
Bill McKibben
Emma Gonzales
Jon Katz
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Bob Waldrop 

My parents 
Eleanor Roosevelt
Martin Luther King
Margaret Sanger
George Marshall
George Washington 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Becoming Odyssa by Jennifer Pharr Davis

Becoming Odyssa by Jennifer Pharr Davis 

I thoroughly enjoyed following Odyssa (Jen’s trail name) as she thru hiked the Appalachian Trail solo. She started in Georgia and ended in at Mt. Katahdin, Maine. She made friends, enjoyed hiking alone, learned how to take care of her body so that she could continue the journey. I will tell you one thing, I could never ever have dealt with the weather, cold rain, snow, thunderstorms or the physical challenges of climbing, dealing with clouds of biting insects, or running out of food or water on the trail. In spite of and sometimes because of the challenges, Odyssa found peace and joy and grew mentally, physically, and spiritually as she completed the 2100 mile trail. A really good read. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Around OakMeadows

We went to the Dallas Botanical Gardens today.  We left Angie at the vet to be boarded overnight so that we could leave before 6am. It is a 4 1/2 hour drive but once you leave the Houston traffic, it is a lovely drive.  We stopped at McDonald’s to get breakfast. The gardens are beautiful, beautifully laid out and immaculately maintained. Several areas had fountains and small waterfalls and the flowers were spectacular. Lots of huge trees.  JMM took photos so I just enjoyed the beauty and the peace.  

RBG is showing at the River Oaks and although I want to see it, i don’t want to see it enough to drive through all that traffic, find a non-existent parking spot,in the heat, and deal getting to the theater. So I hope it will come to my local AMC or perhaps it will be available for streaming eventually. 

I got my Dutch Churn and Dash Quilt back and to tell the truth, I don’t like it. The blocks look messy and cluttered.  I think this is the only quilt that I have ever made that I really didn’t like.  Sometimes I pull my hair out and rip things apart and start over again but I am always rather pleased with the finished product.  Now I don’t know what to do with it. I had planned to give it to my niece, Brenda, but I feel awkward giving something that I don’t like to someone that I do like. Decisions, decisions. 

I finished reading To Die but Once by Jacqueline Winspear. It is Maisie Dobbs #14 and I think it is one of the best. Perhaps it holds my interest because it is set in England in the opening days of WW II during the evacuation at Dunkirk. I anticipate at least 5 more books set during WW II.  I’ve started Becoming Odyssa which is about a young woman hiking the Appalachian Trail. So far it is really good. 

Friday, May 4, 2018

🔥Resistance Every. Day. 🔥

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Sent emails to Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
I would like to encourage you to choose only high-quality, ethical nominees to serve our country. Andrew Oldham, nominee to the Court of Appeals, supports restricting voting rights, women's health care, and immigrants' rights. Gina Haspel’s past human-rights violations should preclude her from serving in the CIA, much less as its director. EPA Director Scott Pruitt has proven a poor choice for his cavalier spending of taxpayer dollars. I ask that you be discerning as each vote comes up in the Senate. Thank you.

Thank you note to Azadeh Shahshahani:
Thank You for work through Project South and advocacy for America’s detained immigrants. Your legal work, investigations, and writing are shedding light and helping liberate our neighbors. Thank you for your tenacious leadership. We stand with you.
Address: Project South, 9 Gammon Ave SE, Atlanta, GA 30315

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Email to Rep. Pete Olson and Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
April 10th was Equal Pay Day, the average date it takes for women in America to make the same wage as a white male in a year (99 extra days!). It takes even longer for Black women, Native women, and Latina women to make the same level of pay. In fact, Latinas are the farthest behind. At only 54 cents on the dollar for the same work, their Equal Pay Day is Nov 1st. I am writing to ask you to co-sponsor the Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R. 1869/S. 819) so that equal pay can be a reality for all. Thank you.

Thank you notes to 4 Republican Senators:
Thank you for voting for the bill (S. 1735) that protects special investigations of the president. It must be difficult to do something your party finds threatening, so I especially appreciate your leadership. Thank you for your service to our democracy.

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Called Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
Call: Your 2 senators—red or blue (look up).
I’m calling in support of the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act (S. 1917). This bipartisan effort would reduce racial disparity in sentencing, decrease the expense of ineffective mandatory minimums, and increase judicial discretion in sentencing non-violent drug offenders. It also allocates funding for effective programs that reduce re-offending. Please co-sponsor S. 1917 and urge the Senate Majority Leader to bring the bill to the floor for a vote.

(Never thought I’d ever write a Thank You note to Jeff Sessions but these are strange times.)
Thank You note to Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
Thank You for not canceling legal-rights clinics for people detained in ICE facilities. I value treating immigrants with basic respect, and your decision is a step toward that goal. Years from now, our nation will be judged by its treatment of peaceful people seeking asylum in our country.
Address: U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20530-0001

🔥Resistance. Every. Day.🔥

Thank You note to Gov. Larry Hogan (R-MD):
Thank You for signing into law three bipartisan gun control bills that protect the citizens of your state. I especially appreciate you supporting a compromise that respects the 2nd Amendment while making people safer. Thank you.

Called Rep. Pete Olson and Senators Cornyn and Cruz:
I believe that kids brought here as children are Americans. The president promised not to target Dreamers, but we have started deporting them and tearing them from loving families. This is unacceptable. I want you to be proactive in offering young people a path to citizenship, to prevent deportation, and to bring a vote on the Dream Act (H.R. 3440/S. 1615). We must protect these valuable members of our communities. Thank you.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

San Antonio Botanical Gardens

Last week we drove to San Antonio Botanical Gardens. Wow! What a gorgeous garde

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

What do I value?

What do I value?

“How we live our lives speaks as loud as what we say we believe, if not louder. How does my life reflect my deepest values?” 
Awakening the Soul: A Book of Daily Devotions, edited by John C. Morgan

I read this in my daily devotional and it got me to thinking, “What are my deepest values?” So I made a list. I’m sure I’m forgetting some.

Being debt free

How would you answer, “What are your deepest values?”