Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Dog Training: Citronella Dog Collars

The neighbours had been complaining that my dog had been barking non-stop. I hate the electric zapping bark collars so I purchased a humane citronella collar. When a dog barks, it shoots a blast of citronella under their nose and apparently they don't like it.
This morning I was getting the collar ready and filled it with the citronella liquid. And that's where my morning should have ended. But no, it's me, and I begin to become curious as to “how” the collars actually work.
So I'm standing by my back door "barking" at my dog's collar. Nothing happens. I make sure it's turned on, check the fill level, and go through the "getting started" checklist one more time. Again, I bark. Nothing happens. Now I'm not quite sure, why I had this next thought, but I did...I put the collar on. I seriously extended the band and fit the growl box against my throat and barked. Apparently, the collar only works if it feels vibrations because I immediately received a blast of citronella to the face.
I began coughing, which only caused the collar to continue squirting bug spray over and over into my nasal cavity. I'm now on my hands and knees in my backyard, trying to breathe, and to make matters worse, the dog is barking. So between coughing and yelling at him to shut up, I've emptied over a dozen blasts of citronella to my face. During all of this ruckus, I'm trying to undo the clasp of the collar, which has somehow managed to weld shut during this whole fiasco.

I finally get the collar off and threw, yes I threw that inhumane good for nothing collar across the yard, and lay in the grass sucking in the cool morning air. In the middle of thinking this is probably the dumbest thing I've done in a while, I hear laughter. MY NEIGHBOR SAW THE WHOLE THING! He was laughing so hard he couldn't breathe. Between gasps, he tells me, "I was gonna come help, but every time I started to climb over the fence, you'd set it off again and then I would start laughing and couldn't make it." So now, not only are my eyes red, but my face and ears are too. After checking to make sure I was ok, we parted ways and I went in to shower so I wouldn't smell like ode de' Tiki Torch.

Lesson learned: next time (yes, there will always be a next time with me) make sure that:
1. Don't fill the collar before trying to set it off.
2. Remember your neighbor is not a good source of help in a comedy crisis situation.
On the plus side, I won't have a mosquito problem for a few days!

Even though this does sound like some crazy thing that I'd do, I hate to break the news that it's a copied story that gave me a good laugh so feel free to do the same. 😘😉

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Happy Birthday: Influential Cartoonist Charles Thorson

Charles Gustav Thorson was a Cartoonist and Illustrator from Winnipeg, of the province of Manitoba in the country of Canada. He was born on August 29, 1890 (128 years ago!).

Charles Thorson created prototypes of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,  Bugs BunnyElmer Fudd, and The Flintstones. Wow. I am so thankful he was born, and eventually moved to the US of A to work for Disney and Warner Bros! Many of us have had a childhood that was made richer/funnier thru the imagination and ideas of this man.

Kristin Solvadottir, right, is believed to be the muse for Charles Thorson's drawing of Snow White for Disney Studios. From Gene Walz's Cartoon Charlie: The Life and Art of Animation Pioneer Charles Thorson. (Great Plains Publications) -- CBC News

pc: (Great Plains Publications)

Read the full article H E R E

Cartoon History

Charles Gustav Thorson


Monday, August 27, 2018

Diet Soda & You

5 Powerful Reasons To Quit Drinking Diet Sodas Now -- Ursula, of

Stay informed and make good choices for your future health. Here are 5 Powerful Reasons To Quit Drinking Diet Sodas Now

Remember my post: Drinking One Diet Drink A Day Can Triple Risk Of Dementia And Strokes The article generated a lot of controversies. Some people commented in favor and some people were not convinced. Sure, more studies are needed. More professional investigations need to take place so that we can be 100% sure of the dangers of artificial sweeteners.

But one thing is certain. Many experts are now in increasingly large numbers telling you how bad these drinks really are for your health and why you need to quit. And I think we should be listening to them.

People tend to think that diet drinks are healthier because they contain no sugar, but the reality is diet soda may be free of calories, but not of consequences. Artificial sweeteners can be worse than sugar. Just the word “artificial” gives you an indication that it can’t be the best option for you.
This is why I am sharing with you some studies that have already been done. In my opinion, these are 5 powerful reasons to quit drinking diet sodas now. You can click on the studies and find out more details.

5 Powerful Reasons To Quit Drinking Diet Sodas Now

1. Diet Drinks Can Alter Your Mood
The mood-food connection is ever-rising, and Aspartame (a very commonly used artificial sweetener which came into use by some very questionable political trickery back in the day) has been found to have the ability to really mess with the brains of people suffering from anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder. Oh, and did you know that Aspartame is also on the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) list of potentially dangerous chemicals contributing to neurotoxicity? Something you want to be ingesting, no?
2. Diet Drinks Mess With Your Skin
According to doctor and author of health- and wellness book Stop Aging, Start Living: The Revolutionary 2-Week pH Diet, Jeanette Graf, Diet Coke (and other diet drinks) lowers your pH levels, which has been known to cause acne, and also zap your skin of all its radiance.
3. Diet Drinks Can Mess With Your Fertility
Women who regularly consume diet soft drinks may be reducing their chances of getting pregnant, according to research.
recent study  of 524 patients found a link between artificial sweeteners, such as those used in “diet” sodas, and lower fertility rates, while use of sugar in soft drinks and added to coffee was associated with poorer quality of eggs and embryos.
Professor Adam Balen, Chairman of the British Fertility Society, said of the study: “This is a very interesting study that suggests the false promise of artificial sweeteners that are found in soft drinks and added to drinks, such as coffee, may have a significant effect on the quality and fertility of woman’s eggs and this may further impact on the chances of conception.
4. Diet Drinks Make Your Kidneys Sluggish
If you want to stay healthy, it seems diet drinks are your worst enemy. According to a Harvard Nurse’s Health Study , these drinks also interfere with your kidneys, where research found that just two servings of diet soda each day could cause a whopping 30 percent drop in kidney function.
5. Diet drinks Often Contain Aspartame And This Has Been Linked To Cancer
While Aspartame as per today is approved as an artificial sweetener, a whole host of studies and a substantial amount of data have shown it to have “strong links to cancer”.
In the US, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) cautions against Aspartame because it is poorly tested and contains three well-known neurotoxins, and a reported study at the Cesare Maltoni Cancer Research Center found that Aspartame increased cancer risk if the exposure begins in the womb.

Those are 5 powerful reasons to quit drinking diet sodas now. In addition to the 6th reason associated with the risk of dementia and stokes from my previous article.- -  Creative Healthy Family

Drinking 1 Diet Soda

5 Reasons to Quit Now


Saturday, August 25, 2018

Pornography and Your Brain

Saw young Nate wearing this shirt at a restaurant in small College-town, USA.

 It is certain to be a conversation starter with the youngish crowd who frequent the Coffee Shop where he works.  He had his girlfriend with him.  She came across as happy, content, safe.  Who wouldn't be with such an in-your-face declaration of Nate's commitment to purity in their relationship? God bless you, N & S! 

ETA: "Fight the New Drug" is a non-profit organization which -- I did not realize till today -- was founded by Mormons.  I want to make it perfectly clear that I am a born-again Christian, and NOT Mormon, nor am I promoting their cult via this post.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Retirement & Investment: Are You on the Millionaire List per Fidelity?

Number of 401(k), IRA millionaires continues to surge - by Matthew Rocco

The number of “401(k) millionaires” surged in the second quarter, as broad gains in the stock market lifted the value of Americans’ retirement plans.
Fidelity Investments said Thursday the number of people with at least $1 million in their 401(k) plan climbed to 168,000 by the end of June, up 41 percent compared to the same quarter in 2017. The company also noted that the percentage of 401(k) millionaires who are women rose to 21 percent.
source: Fidelity Investments

The number of IRA millionaires also grew, hitting 156,000.

Overall, retirement savings have improved among 401(k) and IRA holders following a dip in the first quarter.
The average 401(k) balance nearly hit an all-time high. Fidelity said the average balance was $104,000, up 6 percent from $97,700 in first quarter last year and just shy of the current record of $104,300. The average IRA balance increased nearly 7 percent year-over-year to $106,900. Balances in 403(b) accounts also posted gains compared to last year.
“The stock market’s performance over the past several years has definitely helped retirement savers, but now would good time for investors to take a moment and make sure they are doing their part to meet their retirement goals,” Kevin Barry, president of workplace investing at Fidelity, said in a news release.
Read the Fox Business article H E R E


Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Colorado: Bake the Cake or Else!!

Sick!!! Colorado Going After Masterpiece Cakeshop Again

Jack Phillips, the Christian baker who prevailed at the U.S. Supreme Court after declining to create a custom wedding cake for a gay couple, filed a lawsuit in federal court late Tuesday suing the Colorado Civil Rights Commission.

Phillips and his attorneys at the Alliance Defending Freedom say the Commission has revived its campaign against him following June’s high court decision, singling Masterpiece Cakeshop out for disparate treatment on the basis of their religious beliefs.

“The state of Colorado is ignoring the message of the U.S. Supreme Court by continuing to single out Jack for punishment and to exhibit hostility toward his religious beliefs,” said Kristen Waggoner, an Alliance Defending Freedom attorney who represents Phillips. “Even though Jack serves all customers and simply declines to create custom cakes that express messages or celebrate events in violation of his deeply held beliefs, the government is intent on destroying him — something the Supreme Court has already told it not to do.”
On the same day the high court agreed to review the Masterpiece case, an attorney named Autumn Scardina called Phillips’ shop and asked him to create a cake celebrating a gender transition. The caller asked that the cake be blue on the outside and pink on the inside. In the months that followed, Phillips received requests for cakes featuring marijuana use, sexually explicit messages, and Satanic symbols.
Phillips believes Scardina made all these requests.
Scardina filed a complaint with the civil rights commission, alleging discrimination on the basis of gender identity. The matter was held in abeyance while the Supreme Court adjudicated the Masterpiece case.
Three weeks after Phillips won at the high court, the commission issued a probable cause determination, finding there was sufficient evidence to support Scardina’s claim of discrimination.

“Colorado has renewed its war against him by embarking on another attempt to prosecute him, in direct conflict with the Supreme Court’s ruling in his favor,” Phillips’ lawsuit reads. “This lawsuit is necessary to stop Colorado’s continuing persecution of Phillips.”  -- the Federalist

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Millennials' Death by Deliberate Ignorance

via: pluralist
The man on the left will be forever remembered as having said and believed the following.  He and his GF suffered the most awful of consequences -- in the hands of very real and EVIL men -- while travelling by bike thru Tajikistan:

As is in 100% of the case, God hit it on-the-nail.  Below is reality. Truth. It is what afflicts ALL men, women, and children the world over.  No exceptions.

We are Sinners no matter how much "good" we've done.  The depravity of all souls can barely be fathomed by our finite minds.
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one
However, God is willing to forgive and create in each of us new hearts.  God is LIFE, and LOVE, and MERCY -- in Christ Jesus. He alone is the Saviour.


 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.  (Romans 3:24-28)

Read the tragic story of the Millennials  H E R E


Floor Renovation: Hexagon Tiles in Master Bathroom

While shopping for hexagonal-shaped tiles, these were the ones that caught our eye at Floor & Decor. They sold out quickly at this store location, but we got enough to cover the 550 square-feet we need for our Master Bath floor.

The product is called New York SOHO porcelain hexagon tiles.  Made in Italy.  Its durability rating is 4 out of 5 which was a thumbs-up for us. A bathroom will get plenty of traffic in its lifetime.

The tile & the hexagon shape was featured in
Floor & Decor's 2018 brochure. 

Hexagon-shapes elsewhere:

Ever popular -- even as decals on walls

Easy Updates

Removeable Decals

Etsy: Nicematches

NY SOHO Hexagon Tiles


Saturday, August 18, 2018

Tariffs & Trade & Talks: China Blinks

China Buckles, Sends Trade Delegation to Washington to Seek End of Trade War

China and the U.S. are set to resume trade talks for the first time since June
-- by John Carney
A meeting between the two countries, which would be between lower-level officials than earlier talks, would mark a breach in the standoff that has arisen since talks broke down in the spring. U.S. officials have repeatedly said they were open to new talks but insisted that China had walked away rather than offer serious reform.
It still is not clear if China’s delegation will carry with it a reform offer serious enough to stave off the Trump administration’s threat of former tariffs.  The U.S. side will be lead by Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs David Malpass.
China is sending a trade envoy to Washington in a renewed effort to end a worsening tariff dispute that has raised worries it will chilal global economic growth.
The delegation led by a deputy commerce minister will visit in late August  (Aug. 22-23) to discuss “issues of mutual concern,” the Commerce Ministry announced Thursday. It gave no details of a possible agenda.
The two governments are poised to impose a new round of tariff hikes on $16 billion of each other’s goods next week in their worsening conflict over Beijing’s technology policy.
The Commerce Ministry said Beijing “reiterates its opposition to unilateralism and trade protectionism and does not accept any unilateral trade restrictions.”
This month’s meeting would be the first between senior U.S. and Chinese officials since June 3 talks in Beijing between Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Vice Premier Liu He ended with no settlement.
Following that, Washington imposed its first round of 25 tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese goods on July 6 in response to complains Beijing steals or pressures foreign companies to hand over technology. China responded with similar penalties on American imports.
The Trump administration is due to impose similar increases on an additional $16 billion of Chinese imports on Tuesday. China’s government has issued a list of American goods for retaliation.

USA Tariff List on Chinese products

China Tariff List on US goods

Please don't tax Yuja Wang, Pianist :-)
pc: wikipedia

China Buckles

November 2018: Meetings Planned for POTUS & China's Xi Jinping

China Blasts US on Tariffs

Trump on Verge of Crushing China   07.20.2018

Trump vs China   07.19.2018