Apple Blossoms

I think I have just fallen in love with apple blossoms.  I have never known them so personally before.  But four years ago we planted a Granny Smith tree in our yard, and after some false starts -- well, a start can be false and true -- this year we have some blossoms that have completely captivated me.  The translucence of the petals and their call make me wish I were a bee. 

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Approaching 70...

January, for me, has always been two new beginnings.  I'm not only beginning a new year, I am turning another year older.  And this year it will be 70.  Seventy.  I am approaching with caution, and disbelief that I have only been on this planet (well, this time anyway) for 70 years.

At sixty I thought -- "ah, free at last, free at last" -- to do what I like, see what I like, eat what I like, drink what I like!  I'm old enough that it doesn't matter anymore! 

The Week After Christmas

Even though the ornaments are still on the tree;

 

And even though the lighted reindeer are stll on the lawn;

The week after Christmas has a stripped down, self contained aspect.

The stuffed Santa knows he will soon be put back in the old sea chest,

And the sagging branches of the tree know they will soon be outside on the curb for recycling.

It feels like there is more air and more light (well, there IS more daylight!);

Christmas Present(s)

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Christmas presents or Christmas presence?  I've been thinking about those two words for some time.  Obviously they sound the same, obviously they have completely different meanings.  Or do they?  Sometimes what we crave the most is not a thing, but a connection. 

What I Thought I Knew

For as long as I can remember, I have been interested in the history of the things that are part of my life.  The history was often recited to me when I was very young, and having received the information, I never thought to question it again.  For instance, there are four caned chairs that have been in my grandmother's house, garage, my dad's house, workshop, my first apartment, and are now part of the furniture my husband and I treasure.  These chairs were hand made, and my grandmother, dad and I have all, at one point, undertaken to restore the caned seats.  This is a tedious and back-br

Patriot Notes

Jeffrey Sachs, Charles Dickens, and our National Budget Debate

Our current national budget debate reminds me of a quote from Charles Dickens in David Copperfield:

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six,
result happiness.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six,
result misery.

Jeffrey Sachs posted a fascinating piece in The Huffington Post Sunday, in which he applied a "misery index" to the economies of the U.S., Canada, and Western Europe.

Some Common Sense about a Free Market

Interlude: Net Neutrality and the Idea of Freedom - Part 2

I pointed out, in the previous post, that the recent Republican attack on net neutrality—on your right, for example, to read the daily mull even if your broadband company doesn’t like what I say here—that the Republican attempt to destroy that right is rooted in the specific notion of freedom which big money conservatives and social conservatives share.

The liberal view of freedom is centered in the individual—on the right to live as he or she sees fit, as long as that doesn’t infringe on the rights of others.

Some Common Sense about a Free Market

Six Ways to Strengthen the 99 Percent

Remember, this series is about creating a free market, and, in the process, strengthening freedom and democracy in the country.

A laisez-faire market is neither free, nor beneficial.

It will eventually be controlled by wealthy corporations to the detriment of freedom in general.

But a truly free market—one which is kept free of the dominance of wealth—is generally beneficial to all.

Last time we looked at the first of three ways to keep the market free, by stemming the power of wealth.

The three ways were:

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