Monday, October 31, 2011

Candy & Pets. Pet Costumes. Dog Training. Pet Quiz. Dog Vaccines. Halloween.


Beware! Halloween Candy is Just One Type of Food that Could Kill Your Pet

"Which “Human” Foods are Toxic for Pets?

People food was the third top poison to pets in 2008, and while certain human foods can be very healthy for dogs and cats -- and it’s certainly preferable to feed your pets fresh, species-appropriate human-grade food as much as possible -- there are some foods that are toxic to pets.

Here are some human foods you absolutely should not feed your pets:

  • Grapes and raisins, which can sometimes cause kidney failure in very low amounts

  • Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which are both classified as methylxanthines; these can cause hyperactivity, increased heart rate, tremors, and potentially death (the more bitter the chocolate, the more toxic it is for your pets)

  • Onions and members of the onion family, such as leeks and chives; these can cause damage to red blood cells that could result in anemia in both dogs and cats.    The exception is garlic, which is metabolized into a different metabolite than onions that is not toxic to pets. A small amount of fresh garlic fed to pets daily actually has some great health benefits.

  • Macadamia nuts may cause problems including weakness, depression, vomiting, ataxia, tremors, and hyperthermia.

  • Rising bread dough can be life-threatening – The bread dough itself is not toxic but the animal's body heat can cause the dough to rise in the stomach, doubling or tripling in size and leading to impaction. The dough can also produce ethanol, which causes animals to stumble and become disoriented, lethargic and depressed.

  • Xylitol, a sugar substitute common in sugar-free chewing gum, can cause life-threatening hypoglycemia and liver damage in dogs; if your dog has ingested gum, bring your dog to the emergency vet immediately!

Again, if you know your pet has ingested a toxin and is showing signs of distress, take him to your emergency vet immediately. If your pet is not showing any symptoms yet, but you suspect he may have ingested a toxin, call Poison Control at 888-426-4435 to find out the next best steps to take."

More at:


It's Halloween - Why Is Your Pet Hiding Under the Bed?

"People dress pets in Halloween costumes to amuse themselves and other humans.
  • Many pets find costumes uncomfortable, restrictive and probably humiliating.
  • Costumes can also be dangerous to your pet’s health and safety.
  • Elaborate holiday costumes are expensive indulgences that do nothing to enhance the health or quality of life of most pets.

By Dr. Becker

Halloween is tonight and I hope no one reading here is thinking seriously about forcing a four-legged family member into an elaborate costume.

Why trick your pet at Halloween by stuffing him into a costume? Why not treat him instead - to a challenging puzzle toy, an extra-long play session, a new comfy bed or some other indulgence?

I realize mine is not a popular opinion in some circles. But please read further before jumping to conclusions.

9 Reasons Not to Dress up Your Dog for Halloween

Please note: The following also applies to cats and other companion animals, but since it's dogs we most often see in Halloween costumes, I'm referring to them to illustrate my point."

Read the rest of the article at:


Do-it-Yourself Dog Training Tips

"If you can't afford a dog trainer or simply prefer to train your own pet, here are some dog training tips from the professionals:

First establish trust. "Puppy training requires reasonable expectations," says Achey-Zarnas. "You should think of your 5-month-old pet as a 2-year-old child. It's not about obedience training at this stage. You want to establish trust."

Take baby steps. "Puppies, like children, have short attention spans. Mostly they want to eat, snuggle, and nap. You can begin to establish a sense of teamwork with simple training like sitting and walking on a leash, but you can't force discipline on a puppy any more than you can on a child," says Achey-Zarnas.

Try a dog playpen. "When you are away from home, crate your puppy," says Gorton. "Think of the crate as you would a playpen or a crib. The crate is a safe place for your pet to be. Use the crate to prevent unwanted behaviors. Never use the crate as a form of punishment."

Reward good behavior. "Don't wait for your puppy to do something wrong. Reward good behavior and set boundaries with ‘yes’ and ‘no,’ but not with punishments that break down the relationship. Puppy training is about preventing bad habits that can be hard to get rid of later and can affect your pet's health physically and emotionally," Gorton says.

Use treats carefully. "Use food treats to reinforce good behavior. They are your most powerful tool in the beginning. Puppies are like young children in the 'me stage.' Treats get their attention and help you bond with them," says Achey-Zarnas.

The Right Way to Train Your Dog

In the past, much of dog training was centered on the dominance theory. This style of training was based on the understanding of dogs as pack animals similar to wolves. The dominance theory says that a dog will try to "lead the pack" unless you establish dominance. Many dog trainers, and the Humane Society of the United States, now stress positive reinforcement as the best dog training style. The International Positive Dog Training Association considers training tools like choke chains and shock equipment as pet health hazards.

"Dogs are not wolves. They are domesticated pets that depend on humans and want to please us. The idea of the alpha dog and the pack belongs in the wild, not in your home," says Gorton. "Dog training is much closer to parenting than to training a pack animal. You want your pet to see you as a good teacher, not as a tough boss. When you bring a pet puppy into your home, think of your dog's training as parenting a new member of your house."

Adds Achey-Zarnas, "Neither overly permissive parenting, nor punitive parenting is good for a child. We don't want dog training to be punitive or permissive either — we want it to be proactive. That means finding the balance between positive reinforcement and setting boundaries.""



Pet Health Quiz:

"Facts and Myths About Your Four-Legged Friends

How Much Do You Know About Your Pet?

dont feed rabbits carrots

Is one dog year seven human years, and do pet rabbits really crave carrots?

Put your pet health knowledge to the test.

Avoid giving carrots to rabbits and all animals because carrots contain a high amount of sugar, which is something your pet doesn’t need. She recommends giving rabbits broccoli, sweet potatoes, or another vegetable instead."

Pet Health Myths and the test at:


Good News About the Latest Canine Vaccination Guidelines

"The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Canine Vaccination Task Force has issued updated vaccination guidelines for 2011.

A highlight of the new guidelines: The three non-rabies core vaccines (distemper, parvo and adenovirus) are now recommended every 3 years instead of annually.

Another highlight: The task force acknowledges that distemper and parvo vaccines provide immunity for at least 5 years and the adenovirus vaccine for at least 7 years."  More at:


What does the Bible say about Halloween?


"But it does speak concerning witches, the occult, and paganism.

Exodus 22:18, You shall not let a witch live.

Deut. 18:10-12, "Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD…"

"The celebration of Halloween has no such Christian spiritual features. True, this holiday falls on October 31st, which is the eve of All Saints Day, which is a festival day celebrated by some Christian churches. However, the modern celebration of Halloween is not generally thought of as a Christian time of worship.

The day does have religious significance for some people, particularly wiccans and druids.  For some people and in some regions, Halloween or some of its elements may have a non-Christian religious meaning. Some Halloween activities could be considered anti-Christian, and would, therefore, be avoided. Christians would want to avoid demonic associations, for example. With these things in mind, it would be appropriate for Christians to consider carefully their activities on this holiday."

"Just before reaching a conclusion on the subject, I was struck with the thought that I ought to further my search and find out what Wicca, the official religion of witchcraft, has to say about Halloween. Perhaps they viewed the day as a simple fun and innocent neighborhood activity?

“Shock” is the only word to describe what I found. Halloween is a real, sacred day for those who follow Wicca. In fact, it is one of two high and holy days for them. The Celtic belief of spirits being released is current, along with the worship of Samhain (the lord of death) – both are promoted as something to embrace on that day. There is no question in my mind that to those who believe and follow the practices of witchcraft, Halloween represents an opportunity to embrace the evil, devilish, dark side of the spiritual world."



Should Christians Celebrate Halloween??

For those who celebrate, do you know the meaning behind it?




Ray and I could have started on some jobs outside, but it was chilly, so we concentrated on some long overdue maintenance jobs inside first.   

We got out the Ultra Shark vacuum which has a shoulder strap that makes it very handy for doing the ceiling fans.  They run 24/7 so they do get dusty. 

Then we vacuumed and re-stuffed the filter containers in the ionizing air cleaners.  There is one big one in the living room, one in the grooming room and one in my bedroom.  The filters for these are so expensive that we make our own.  We cut up some charcoal filter material and the thick pleated filters that are for central units, and refill the filter housings with that.  They help keep the air conditioner's filters clean in the summer, and great in the winter when the house is closed up.

A quick vacuum of the back of the computer, so that cat fur isn't sucked into it, is something I do often, too.

Hopefully, this is the last time we had to clean the air conditioner's filters, but you never know, sometimes we have to run AC in December.

The back yard hedge had grown straggly, so Ray trimmed that with the electric hedge clippers, while I raked up the pine needles and poo!  That's my job as it is my dog, and any  visiting dogs, that need to be picked up after, and I like to keep it clean.


The cats enjoyed some screen porch time, as it warmed up to a lovely sunny day.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Halloween. Martians! Cargo Trailer. Dizzy-Dick & Ruth. Lake Conroe. Egypt.



HALLOWEEN! Harmless? or Hazardous??

"October 31 is the most important day in the satanic year. It marks the Celtic new year, and is always at the end of the growing season, thus it became the "Festival of Death." On this day, the god of the Celtics was to have called up the spirits of the wicked dead who had died during the past year. At the same time, other evil spirits arose and went about the countryside harassing the people.

On October 31, the Celtics expected to be harassed by ghosts, evil spirits, and demons; and it was no fun and games to them! They would light bonfires to guide the spirits to their own town and to ward off evil spirits."

"Now let's look at the present day celebration of Halloween. Isn't the whole theme one of darkness, death, fear, threats, destruction and evil? There are witches, broomsticks, bats, owls, ghosts, skeletons, death, and monsters. We dress our children as demons, witches, ghouls, monsters and werewolves and send them out into the streets in the dark to reenact the Druids' practice of demanding food from people under the threat of tricks (or curses) if they don't comply
We take not a turnip like they did, but a pumpkin and carve demon faces in it and decorate with it. At Halloween there will be apple bobbing, divination, fortune telling, haunted houses, candles lit, and spirits called up. There will be séances and ouija boards in the name of fun and excitement. There will be sacrifices of dogs, cats, rats, chickens, goats and even humans!

You say, "We don't take it seriously." But the devil does and so does God! Particularly this is true when the church which He purchased with His blood builds haunted houses in its fellowship halls so that the little lambs who have been entrusted to its care can be terrified and opened up to invading spirits of fear, torment, and confusion. HOW THIS MUST GRIEVE THE LORD!

Halloween has never been a Christian holiday and it has no place in the life of a believer in Jesus Christ. In fact it is an abomination to God and we should take our stand firmly against it and all it entails. As we look into its history, we find that its roots go deep into heathenism, paganism, Satanism, and the occult; and the modern expression is no better!"
Hosea 4:6
Ezekiel 44:23
Deuteronomy 18:9-14
James 1:27
2 Corinthians 6:14
Philippians 4:8
Deuteronomy 7:25-26
1 Thessalonians 5:21-23
1 Corinthians 10:19-23
More at:

"Test everything. Hold on to what is good.  Avoid every kind of evil"     (1 Thessalonians 5:21,22)

Is Halloween Harmless?

"Every year at Halloween, well-meaning parents dress their children in grotesque and ghoulish costumes. Is Halloween really harmless? Who and what's behind this bizarre holiday?

It all looks like so much fun and seems so harmless: jack-o'-lanterns, grotesque grinning masks, long black witch attire with pointed black hats, costumes painted like skeletons, outfits that represent demons and goblins, and children going door to door, soliciting treats from compliant neighbors.

But when Halloween comes around, do you find yourself yearning for the hours to pass until the whole trick-or-treat farce is over? If you don't, you should!

Halloween's not-so-fun side

Since when is it acceptable for little children to threaten to commit vandalism?

What happens if the homeowner doesn't come to the door or doesn't have the treats the kids might expect? Is it permissible for children to then soap his windows, toilet paper his trees, chalk mark his sidewalk or turn over plants as they leave? When is it okay for children to commit vandalism while on another person's property?

Isn't it about time for all well-meaning citizens to just say NO to Halloween?

The clergy, in general, hasn't stood against it. Some churches even have Halloween parties. Some citizens do speak up against it, as the letters to the editor in your newspaper occasionally show.

Is Halloween simply good, clean fun, or is it something else entirely? You need to know!

God is giving a wake-up call to professing Christians. As it was with those the prophet Elijah addressed in his day, so it is with us: "'How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.' But the people answered him not a word" (1 Kings:18:21And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.). What will it take for Christians to accept and stand for God's truth rather than harmful traditions that originated in paganism?
More at:        Article by Jerold Aust

Paganism Is Popular Because It Is Profitable--Prime Example: Halloween

Paganism Is Popular Because It Is Profitable--Prime Example: Halloween
"Halloween is profitable for retailers - that is part of the reason it is so popular"

"Americans are frightened by the ongoing recession, but, ironically, a large percent are not afraid to spend pretty scary amounts for Halloween!

Incredibly, seven in 10 Americans plan on celebrating the holiday this year—almost 5 percent more than last year—according to the National Retail Federation’s 2011 Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey.

The expected expenditures total $6.86 billion! That includes $1 billion on children’s costumes, $1.21 billion on adult costumes, and $310 million on pet costumes.

The average consumer is expected to spend $72.31 on decorations, costumes and candy.

According to the NRF, the amount spent each year on Halloween decorations is second only to spending on Christmas décor.

That’s the “bottom line”! The pagan holidays are “popular” because they make a lot of money for a lot of people.

But as consumers, we need to do some re-thinking. What a person chooses to spend his money on says a lot about his priorities, principles and beliefs.

And what source can we rely on to help us formulate the best priorities, principles and beliefs? The Bible, God’s Guidebook for humanity.

Please don’t be satisfied with what you’ve learned at church about the Bible. I grew up going to church almost every Sunday and eventually realized I had learned very little about the Bible, and much of what I thought I had learned was false! When I began to read the Bible for myself, I was amazed at what I was learning!

Some history that helps explain Halloween-type practices
How did America transform from almost no one observing pagan holidays in the 18th century to almost everyone observing them in the 20th century?
The industrial revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries and the technological revolution of the 20th century greatly raised the average living standard and brought about many other benefits. But they also paved the way for the many materialistic and expensive traditions.

To observe pagan holidays, think of how much is spent for decorations, parties, costumes, gifts (often obligatory “gifts”), greeting cards, wrapping paper, music, “adult beverages,” etc., etc. The modern mass-production of all these things makes them highly profitable for the manufacturers and retailers.

But what motivates people to buy? It is largely the power of advertising. These holidays have been highly commercialized because they are big money-makers. We are bombarded with advertising from seemingly everywhere. It’s difficult not to be brainwashed by all of that ubiquitous influence.
Then the peer pressure is huge. It seems like everyone is celebrating these days. And since it seems that everyone is spending lots of money on attractive stuff, we are made to feel like cheapskates if we don’t do the same.

It seems downright un-American to consider doing anything else. Ask yourself: Would you ever dream of wasting your time and money on Halloween-type stuff if you weren’t surrounded by a culture doing these silly things?

It’s especially amazing to see how adult parties and costumes have soared in popularity during the last several years.

Pagan religions have always emphasized idols and images, whereas God forbids those things. God emphasizes truth through the spoken and written word. Therefore pagan religions have always been opportunities for profitable merchandising.

A fascinating illustration is in Acts:19:23-41
[23]And the same time there arose no small stir about that way.[24]For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the craftsmen;[25]Whom he called together with the workmen of like occupation, and said, Sirs, ye know that by this craft we have our wealth.[26]Moreover ye see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands:[27]So that not only this our craft is in danger to be set at nought; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana should be despised, and her magnificence should be destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worshippeth.[28]And when they heard these sayings, they were full of wrath, and cried out, saying, Great is Diana of the Ephesians.[29]And the whole city was filled with confusion: and having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia, Paul's companions in travel, they rushed with one accord into the theatre.[30]And when Paul would have entered in unto the people, the disciples suffered him not.[31]And certain of the chief of Asia, which were his friends, sent unto him, desiring him that he would not adventure himself into the theatre.[32]Some therefore cried one thing, and some another: for the assembly was confused: and the more part knew not wherefore they were come together.[33]And they drew Alexander out of the multitude, the Jews putting him forward. And Alexander beckoned with the hand, and would have made his defence unto the people.[34]But when they knew that he was a Jew, all with one voice about the space of two hours cried out, Great is Diana of the Ephesians.[35]And when the townclerk had appeased the people, he said, Ye men of Ephesus, what man is there that knoweth not how that the city of the Ephesians is a worshipper of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Jupiter?[36]Seeing then that these things cannot be spoken against, ye ought to be quiet, and to do nothing rashly.[37]For ye have brought hither these men, which are neither robbers of churches, nor yet blasphemers of your goddess.[38]Wherefore if Demetrius, and the craftsmen which are with him, have a matter against any man, the law is open, and there are deputies: let them implead one another.[39]But if ye enquire any thing concerning other matters, it shall be determined in a lawful assembly.[40]For we are in danger to be called in question for this day's uproar, there being no cause whereby we may give an account of this concourse.[41]And when he had thus spoken, he dismissed the assembly..

The preaching by the apostle Paul in Ephesus led to many turning away from the worship of Diana to the worship of God. This hurt the business of the silversmiths who made silver shrines of Diana. Demetrius stirred up the other silversmiths and a riot erupted that almost got Paul killed.

The 18th chapter of Revelation describes the downfall of the evil end-time system called Babylon. It will be an economic, political, religious and military system. Let’s notice why the merchants of the that system will be mourning its downfall.

“And the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her, for no one buys their merchandise anymore” (Revelation:18:11). “The merchants of these things, who became rich by her, will stand at a distance for fear of her torment, weeping and wailing” (verse 15). Thus we see what their main motivation will be. Their real god will be money."
More at:

An interview with a former witch
"Wicca, divination, sorcery, vampires.
The occult is in the midst of society.
The Bible says to avoid and resist it."


Welles scares nation.  Oct 30, 1938:

"Orson Welles causes a nationwide panic with his broadcast of "War of the Worlds"—a realistic radio dramatization of a Martian invasion of Earth.
Orson Welles was only 23 years old when his Mercury Theater company decided to update H.G. Wells' 19th-century science fiction novel War of the Worlds for national radio. Despite his age, Welles had been in radio for several years, most notably as the voice of "The Shadow" in the hit mystery program of the same name. "War of the Worlds" was not planned as a radio hoax, and Welles had little idea of the havoc it would cause.

The show began on Sunday, October 30, at 8 p.m. A voice announced: "The Columbia Broadcasting System and its affiliated stations present Orson Welles and the Mercury Theater on the air in 'War of the Worlds' by H.G. Wells."

Sunday evening in 1938 was prime-time in the golden age of radio, and millions of Americans had their radios turned on.
But most of these Americans were listening to ventriloquist Edgar Bergen and his dummy "Charlie McCarthy" on NBC and only turned to CBS at 8:12 p.m. after the comedy sketch ended and a little-known singer went on.
By then, the story of the Martian invasion was well underway."


It was cold (37°) first thing, so when Ray arrived we had to wear coats outside.  He wanted to get the cargo trailer front door jam primed and painted as there was no wind at all.

While he was waiting for the coats of paint to dry, we re-arranged some of the many electrical things in the computer area to six-plug strips, so that I could plug the radiator straight into an outlet.  I might need it at night, but I was quite cozy with the comforter on my bed, the night before.
He also put the 'new' battery in the Puddle Jumper, and it fired right up.

Our county posted this on FaceBook:  


"Although the area remains in a long term drought, accumulations of brush can present a significant fire hazard as well.  With the onset of our Winter weather patterns, there is a window of opportunity for residents to dispose of brush accumulated over the past several months. Although the MCFMO recommends other means of disposal, some residents will choose to burn.  Before burning, residents must check for forecast weather conditions, and refrain from burning on any days where a fire weather watch or red flag warning has been issued by the National Weather Service."
So we, and a lot of people around here, were burning their piled up pine needles and brush.   We strung a water hose out there, Ray lit the pile, and I was busy raking up the mounds of pine needles, and was so happy to be able to get rid of them.  We had to do it quickly, before they re-issued the burn ban, or so we thought.

BUT then….  Oh! Oh!    The Fire Dept. sent out a little truck, and they went around the subdivision putting all the fires out.  In the fine print it said that you have to be on 5 acres.  Thankfully, we were not ticketed.

Here are the new cushions in the cargo trailer.  The space at the back is for the removable bed, not shown.


Just after lunch, I had a phone call from Dizzy-Dick.   He is always wondering about something, and he wondered how the cargo trailer looked, so they stopped by to see it.

Dizzy-Dick, his wife Ruth and I had a good visit.  I took a picture of them, and Ruth took one of Dick and me.

Dizzy-Dick & Ruth
Dizzy-Dick & Me

Taking my picture didn't blow up my camera, and I hope theirs still works, as they took pictures, too.
We drove down to the lake, (Lake Conroe) and the water is really down.  But then, apart from the drought, Houston has been taking some of our water.


All the canal lots, sold as 'waterfront', are dried up and the resident's boats are sitting in the dirt. It will be a long time before they can get their boats out to the lake again.  We are about 24" behind in rainfall.

The sun was shining, a high of 68°, and I had good company, so it was a lovely day.

This was the program on WGN this morning:

I nearly missed it, as my old 'world clock' changed from Daylight Savings time, but that doesn't happen until next week.
They changed because of Halloween so the children would not be out in the dark.  That is how powerful celebrating a pagan ritual like Halloween has become!
Egypt is mentioned over 600 times in the Bible, and many of the prophecies are about Egypt.

This shows why these prophecies are important for us today.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Earthquake. Smart Phone Danger. Global Warming. Robert Pierpoint. Great Pitbull. LeafQuest. QE II. Liberty Has Eyes. Stolen Bell. Halloween.

Some news items:

Rescue workers work to save people trapped under debris after an earthquake in Ercis, near the eastern Turkish city of Van


Turkish earthquake: 13-year-old boy pulled from rubble

"Rescuers, working under floodlights, have pulled a 13-year-old boy alive from the rubble of a collapsed apartment building, more than 100 hours after a massive earthquake leveled many buildings in eastern Turkey, killing at least 550 people. "

Ferhat Tokay, 13, center left, being pulled from the rubble of a collapsed building in Ercis, Van, Turkey: Turkish earthquake: 13-year-old boy pulled from rubble
Image 1 of 2
Ferhat Tokay, 13, center left, being pulled from the rubble of a collapsed building in Ercis, Van, Turkey Photo: AP
Turkish rescuers tend Ferhat Tokay, 13, after he was pulled from the rubble: Turkish earthquake: 13-year-old boy pulled from rubble
Image 1 of 2
"A picture by the state-run Anatolia news agency showed a rescue team carrying Ferhat Tokay out of the debris, wearing a neck brace. In other pictures from a field hospital, he appeared conscious and looking at his rescuers.

Tokay's rescue came 108 hours after Sunday's 7.2-magnitude earthquake, the agency said.
The agency said the boy was injured but did not give further details. The collapsed building from which Tokay was rescued was in Ecris, the town worst hit by the quake.
The temblor has killed at least 550 people and injured 2,300 others, according to the country's disaster management, AFAD, website updated Thursday evening. Thousands of homeless in tents were struggling in the bitter cold as rain and snow brought on more hardship."

Pictures you've e-mailed from your smartphone
This might not be news to you, but I think it is worth revisiting:
"Pictures you've e-mailed or uploaded from your smartphone could leak information that can threaten your safety or that of your children.
Visit to read much more on this investigation."


Oops! Turns out Global Warming is For Real

October 22, 2011   By Hrafnkell Haraldsson

"Sometimes reality isn’t what we want it to be. And it is a mistake to think that wishful thinking can or will change anything. As the old tautology goes, it is what it is. That is a lesson Republicans and climate change deniers have yet to learn.
In a paper titled “Cooling the Warming Debate” the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Project throws cold water on warming skeptics:

Global warming is real, according to a major study released today [20 October 2011]. Despite issues raised by climate change skeptics, the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature study finds reliable evidence of a rise in the average world  land temperature of approximately 1°C since the mid-1950s."
More at:

Robert Pierpoint Dead: CBS News Legend Dies At 86

Robert Pierpont
LOS ANGELES -- "CBS News correspondent Robert C. Pierpoint – who covered six presidents, the Korean War, the Kennedy assassination and the Iranian hostage crisis in a career that spanned more than four decades – died Saturday in California, his daughter said. He was 86.

Pierpoint, who retired in 1990, died of complications from surgery at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, Marta Pierpoint told The Associated Press. He had broken his hip Oct. 12 at the Santa Barbara Retirement Community where he lived with his wife Patricia.

After making his name covering the Korean War – a role he reprised when he provided his radio voice for the widely watched final episode of "MASH" in 1983 – Pierpoint became a White House correspondent during the Dwight D. Eisenhower administration, a position he would hold through the Jimmy Carter administration.
"He lived quite an amazing life," said Marta Pierpoint. She said her father was most proud of his coverage of the Korean War, Watergate and most of all the Kennedy assassination, an event that would still bring him to tears in an interview with his hometown paper three weeks before his death."

John Glenn returns to space, Oct 29, 1998:

"Nearly four decades after he became the first American to orbit the Earth, Senator John Hershel Glenn, Jr., is launched into space again as a payload specialist aboard the space shuttle Discovery. At 77 years of age, Glenn was the oldest human ever to travel in space. During the nine-day mission, he served as part of a NASA study on health problems associated with aging."

Pit Bull Saves Woman With Brain Aneurysm, Given 'Neighbor Of The Year' Award.

"When John Benton tried to leave for work one morning back in July, he was surprised to find the family pit bull, Titan, running around in circles, barking and blocking the door out of the house, CBS Atlanta reported.
"He'd run up a few flights of steps and run back down just to keep me from going, to let me know something was wrong. And that's when I followed him up the stairs to see what he was trying to tell me," Benton told the station.
It turns out John's wife Gloria had suffered a brain aneurysm and fractured her skull after falling down. Had Titan not alerted Benton of Gloria's peril, she may have not survived, the station reported.

Now, the pup is being awarded with "Neighbor of the Year" by the Vintage Pointe Neighborhood Association, making him the first canine to ever receive it.
Pit bulls don't always get a good rap in the news.

Dog trainer Michele Crouse told NBC that it's not the dog's breed, but rather the dog's owner that determines the animal's aggression. "It's all upon the responsibility of the owner and not what dog they have. It doesn't matter if they have a 2-pound Chihuahua or a 200-pound mastiff."   From:

LeafQuest: A Fall-Foliage Guide

Fall-foliage trips are as essential a part of American autumns as pumpkins and pigskin.
To help you decide exactly where to go, MapQuest presents LeafQuest:

"Queen Elizabeth II joined world leaders at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Perth, Australia yesterday.
Her Majesty looked lovely in a white suit adorned with navy branches, which she accessorized with a brooch, gloves and pearls. And the crowning touch -- no pun intended -- was her matching white and navy hat."

More at:

Statue of Liberty getting five webcams for 125th anniversary

"The Statue of LIberty gets new webcams this FridayOn the 29th Oct. 2011 the Statue of Liberty turns 125 years old, and to celebrate she's getting some new high-tech gear in the form of five webcams located inside her torch. Four of the cameras will point towards Ellis Island, Governors Island, Liberty Island and the Freedom Tower respectively, while the fifth will give viewers a unique look at the torch itself.

The new cameras will go live during a ceremony that will cap a week filled with special events commemorating the original dedication of Lady Liberty, which took place on October 29, 1886. The 151-foot tall statue was a gift to the United States from France in honor of the ten year anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
During the Revolutionary War, the two nations became close allies, and the U.S. revolution would later inspire many in France to follow suit."

2011 Harley-Davidson CVO Electra Classic Ultra Glide
If you have a Harley, please check on this:
Harley-Davidson recalling over 300,000 motorcycles, between 2009 and 2012.

"Metal Monsters" Steal Copper Bell from St. Mary's Cathedral

SMC Bell #2.JPG.jpg
"​Nothing is sacred anymore -- especially if it's two and a half tons of valuable metal.
The moral qualms of stealing from a church didn't stop the thieves who snatched a 5,300-pound copper bell from St. Mary's Cathedral over the weekend.
Police said Monday that a tourist reported the historic bell, which survived the 1906 earthquake, missing on Sunday morning."         More at:


"He who does anything because it is the custom, makes no choice."~ John Stuart Mill

From the History Channel:


"In this Halloween greeting card from 1904, divination is depicted: the young woman looking into a mirror in a darkened room hopes to catch a glimpse of the face of her future husband."

"Wicca, divination, sorcery, vampires. The occult is in the midst of society. The Bible says to avoid and resist it."

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” Isaiah 5:20



Ray came over, and we started to work on the cargo trailer.
Looking at the dark sky, he said he just knew it was going to rain, so we came inside and looked at the local radar on the computer.  No rain showing, and none forecast.  It was just an overcast day.

He had intended to spray paint the scuffed up paint on the jam of the front door.  I was inside taping newspaper across the opening to protect the floor and cabinets.  The gusts of wind were making that almost impossible, so it was not a good day to paint.

So, instead, he helped me get one of my comforters down from the top linen closet, and we put away a mattress pad that I had just washed.  It is going down to 40 deg. tonight.

The gas props for my van's back hatch don't work when it is cold, and as I already had them, Ray and I got that done.  It was easier with two people.  The stick that I have been carrying around to hold the hatch up on cold days is back in the lumber pile. Now the hatch is so strong, I can hardly close it!

The upholstery lady called, and the cargo trailer's dinette cushions were ready early, I hadn't expected them so soon.   Knowing that she would want cash, not a check, I needed to make a trip into town.

Puddle-Jumper- (Small) If I was going out anyway, I needed to come back with a new battery for the Puddle Jumper, so Ray helped me get the old battery out, and into the van.

The new big Kroger's has a branch of my bank, so I stopped there, ate cheese, fruit and guacamole samples, and bought some organic meat on sale.

After looking at the battery prices at AutoZone, I drove the few extra miles to the Interstate Distributor, and bought a rebuilt one.  The two rebuilt ones that I bought there for my motor home are still going strong, I don't have any trouble starting it now.

Back to my subdivision to pick up the cushions.   They look lovely, and she said the quality of the fabric made the work go fast. She only used 6 yards after all.  She made them as I had asked, with the back and seat joined together with a fabric 'hinge', so they don't slip and slide in the dinette position.  When they are in the cargo trailer, I will take pictures.  Now I have to add Velco to them, and make drapes to match.

Ray needed to borrow a small TV for a couple of days, so I was going to loan him the one in my kitchen.  Then just as an afterthought, we tried out the one that had been taken out of the kitchen a few weeks ago when it quit working.  Funnily enough, it was working again, so I hope it stays going until Monday.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Do You Want Processed Food With That? Water Co. Cuts Cable. Cargo Trailer.

It's "Food Friday":

"Those who fail to take the time to be healthy
will ultimately have to take the time to be sick."
~ Dr. James Chappell


Makes you think, doesn't it?



Five Foods That Should Never Be In Your Grocery Cart


"When loading up at the grocery store, steer your cart clear of unhealthy choices that can take years off your family’s lives. Here are 5 foods to always avoid.


Nearly 9 out of 10 Americans obtain the food that nourishes their family at the supermarket, spending $100 every week and almost $5,000 annually.

Last year, unwholesome heavily processed foods like salty snacks, frozen dinners and sugary breakfast cereals were among the top 10 bestsellers, with carbonated beverages ringing in at #1, commanding a whopping $12 billion in sales. 

The items tossed in your grocery cart play a huge role in the health and wellbeing of your family. Today’s supermarket shelves are stocked with tons of healthy and unhealthy foods. You need to make the right choices when walking the aisles, steering clear of foods that can have disastrous long-term health consequences for your household.

Here are 5 grocery items that should never make it through the checkout line.

1. Simple Sugars or Carbs and Unhealthy Fats

Skip foods laden with simple sugars, also called simple carbohydrates. Sugary breakfast cereals, donuts, pastries, cookies, ice cream, cakes and soda are loaded with them. Often referred to as “empty calories,” simple sugars are rapidly absorbed, spiking blood sugar levels for an initial energy high. This triggers an insulin reaction, driving levels back down and creating fatigue. You’ll feel hungrier and crave even more sugar. Plus those rapidly absorbed extra calories are stored as fat, putting you at risk for obesity.

Make smart choices by selecting fiber-rich complex carbohydrates, including 100% whole grain bread, brown rice or steel-cut oats. Select whole foods such as fresh vegetables and lean meats. These all provide slow, sustained releases of energy for long-lasting fuel.  If you do crave something sweet, head for the produce aisle and pick out your favorite seasonal fruits such as pears, apples, or blueberries.

Processed sweets and goodies also contain saturated and trans fats that clog arteries and stunt weight loss. Instead purchase items rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, like avocados and nuts.

2. Meats High in Nitrates and Saturated Fats **

Processed meats such as cold cuts, bacon, sausages and hot dogs contain nitrates, chemical additives that preserve freshness. Nitrates have been linked to stomach cancer and other degenerative diseases. These fatty meat products are also full of unhealthy saturated fat that can raise levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, a risk factor for heart disease and strokes.

Ditch preserved meats altogether or look for ones that are advertised as “nitrate-free.” Buy meats low in saturated fats such as chicken and turkey or eat more fish, like salmon or tilapia, rich in healthy omega-3 fats. If you must have red meat, choose organic lean cuts like sirloin or tenderloin.


3. Ingredients You Can’t Pronounce

Does ferrous sulfate, thiamine mononitrate or partially hydrogenated soybean oil sound appetizing to you? Follow this rule of thumb: if a food product is made of stuff you need a course in chemistry to comprehend – or —if you can’t pronounce the first 5 ingredients, don’t let it near your cart.

Stay focused on buying whole foods comprised of only 1 ingredient. Instead of snacking on neon-orange cheese curls, slice up some carrots or celery sticks. Invest in an air popper and enjoy fiber-rich popcorn. Make homemade veggie chips: cut up kale, thinly slice beets, sweet potatoes or yams, sprinkle them with herbs and a little olive oil and bake in the oven.

4. Fake Health Foods

Fake health foods are those deceptive foods, billing themselves as “low in fat”, like certain cookies, salad dressings or yogurt brands. Look closely at their labels. To make up for flavor, these items are inevitably high in sugar or salt. Other tricky foods include packaged breads and crackers with labels stating “contains whole grains.” This often translates into considerably less fiber than 100% whole grain products.

Again, choose real foods as much as possible. If it’s a sweet tooth you need to satisfy, buy tasty dried fruits, such as apricots or mangos.

5. Canned Foods High in Sodium

Eighty percent of our sodium intake comes from processed and canned foods. In fact, many canned foods are so chockfull of salt, they contain half or more of your daily recommended intake. A diet high in sodium is dangerous since it can lead to high blood pressure.
Instead of buying canned soups, try making your own simple versions, like a healthy cream of carrot soup or hearty lentil. If you don’t have the time to cook, purchase canned soups low in sodium.

To lower your overall sodium intake, try seasoning foods with more herbs, both dried and fresh. You’ll rely less on table salt for flavor.
Learn more about the relationship between nutrition and lifestyle choices from Holistic Nutritionist Gillian McKeith, host of the UK's You are What You Eat and a guest on The Dr. Oz Show." 




**More about Processed Meats

"Processed meats, such as hot dogs, deli meats, bacon, and pepperoni contain dangerous compounds, which put them squarely on the list of foods to avoid or eliminate entirely. These compounds include:

Heterocyclic amines (HCAs): a potent carcinogen, which is created when meat or fish is cooked at high temperatures.

Sodium nitrite: a commonly used preservative and antimicrobial agent that also adds color and flavor to processed and cured meats.

Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs): Many processed meats are smoked as part of the curing process, which causes PAHs to form.

Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs): When food is cooked at high temperatures—including when it is pasteurized or sterilized—it increases the formation of AGEs in your food. AGEs build up in your body over time leading to oxidative stress, inflammation and an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease.

This recommendation is backed up by a recent report commissioned by The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF). The review, which evaluated the findings of more than 7,000 clinical studies, was funded by money raised from the general public, so the findings were not influenced by vested interests. It's also the biggest review of the evidence ever undertaken, and it confirms previous findings: Processed meats increase your risk of cancer, especially bowel cancer, and NO amount of processed meat is "safe." A previous analysis by the WCRF found that eating just one sausage a day raises your risk of developing bowel cancer by 20 percent, and other studies have found that processed meats increase your risk of:

  • Colon cancer by 50 percent
  • Bladder cancer by 59 percent
  • Stomach cancer by 38 percent
  • Pancreatic cancer by 67 percent

Processed meats may also increase your risk of diabetes by 50 percent, and lower your lung function and increase your risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). If you absolutely want or need a hot dog or other processed meats once in awhile, you can reduce your risk by:

Looking for "uncured" varieties that contain NO nitrates

Choosing varieties that say 100% beef, 100% chicken, etc. This is the only way to know that the meat is from a single species and does not include byproducts (like chicken skin or chicken fat or other parts)

Avoiding any meat that contains MSG, high-fructose corn syrup, preservatives, artificial flavor or artificial color

Ideally, purchase sausages and other processed meats from a small, local farmer who can tell you exactly what's in their products. "



Do You Need a Visual Reason Not to Eat Processed Meat?

Mike Adams from provides some, um, interesting photos of processed meat in his Mystery Meat Macrophotography article.

"This photo shows a close-up of a pair of sharp tweezers grasping a blob of fat (or something else I cannot readily identify) found inside the Oscar Mayer wiener. Looks delicious, huh? Run down to your local Wal-Mart and you, too, can buy this stuff!"

More at:


The Benefits of Healthy Whole Foods, WebMD Feature

What's the difference between whole foods and processed foods?

Healthy whole foods: you might know that you're supposed to eat them.  But do you really know what they are?

"We live in a society that eats so much processed and manufactured food, that I think there's some genuine confusion about what qualifies as a whole food," says Tara Gidus, RD, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.  Even for the health conscious, the phrase gets tangled up with other terms.  Whole foods might be organic, or locally grown, or pesticide-free.  But they aren't necessarily.  The definition of healthy whole foods is much simpler.

"When you eat whole foods, you're getting the food in its natural state," Gidus tells WebMD.  "You're getting it intact, with all of the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are in the food." Basically, it's the healthy whole food, rather than the bits that remain after refinement and processing.  It's the difference between an apple and apple juice, or a baked potato and boxed mashed potatoes.

Healthy Whole Foods

Many studies have found that a diet high in healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are associated with a reduced risk of diseases such as:

  • cardiovascular disease
  • many types of cancer
  • type 2 diabetes

So what's so good about healthy whole foods? For one, they're loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals.  They also contain phytochemicals, the general name for natural compounds in plants.  While thousands of individual phytochemicals have been identified, countless more remain unknown.  They help in different ways.  Some are antioxidants, which protect cells against damage.  Examples of antioxidant phytochemicals are flavonoids, carotenoids, and lycopene.

Usually, the term whole foods is confined to vegetables, fruits, and grains.  But any dietitian will agree that eating a skinless chicken breast is preferable to eating processed chicken nuggets.

One problem with processed food is that, during manufacture, many healthy nutrients are removed."

More at:



What's a whole food vs. a processed food?

"Nutrition by Natalie explains. Whole foods can help your health and help you lose weight. Processed foods like fast food can make you fat and cause health problems. A whole foods diet will ensure you get the nutrition you need."



Fast Food Secrets & Food Processing, Nutrition Austin
Info about the why and how of food processes.


You’re watching Fast Food Secrets & Food Processing, Nutrition Austin.



Gateway Arch completed, Oct 28, 1965:

"On this day in 1965, construction is completed on the Gateway Arch, a spectacular 630-foot-high parabola of stainless steel marking the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial on the waterfront of St. Louis, Missouri."




Misty and I got in the Puddle Jumper to go get Jay.  Click! Click!  No start!  The battery has to be replaced.  So I hoisted Misty up into the van so she still had her walk-about down there at Jay's and sniffed her 'hellos' to little Maddie, the Yorkie.

As always, if it isn't one thing, it is six others!

Jay was working on the 110v. electrical, while Ray was working on the outside of the cargo trailer, and we were going in and out of the house, too, but the door from the house to the workshop got left open, and the one going from the house to the porch where Prime was. Both workshop doors were open to the outside.  

Suddenly I couldn't find Prime, so we all stopped what we were doing and started looking for her.  We looked high and low, inside and out, all armed with flashlights.  I was fearing the worst, and hoping that she wouldn't wind up as a bloody spot on the main road behind my house. 

Prime was good though, she didn't go through that open door, she finally sleepily came out of the cabinet under the porch sink, wondering why every one was calling her.  Whew!  I'll make sure that all cats are on the right side of closed doors before we start work .


Then a big water company truck came down the road towing a trailered back hoe, stopped four houses down, and started digging. There was water running down the street from there.   I had to go in the house for something, and the TV was out, so I looked at the internet modem and it was out, too.  The water company had cut the line, so now we had no water, TV or internet. 

It started to drizzle, so we stopped work for the day, but it wasn't the deluge we had hoped for, and hardly got the pathways wet.

Finally, an hour later, we got some dirty water out of the faucets, they must have got mud in the water lines. As soon as it clears up, I'll have to clean the faucet strainers.


White PVC Swing Check Valve - 1'' FPT x 1'' FPT

When I first moved on this hill, every time they had a water break, the water would drain out of the water heater here in the house, and burn up the element.  So now I have back flow preventers in the water lines to the house and the guest house.  I started putting one on my RV for the same reason.


After three hours, I called the cable company and asked when they were going to send someone out to fix it.   NO ONE had called them, not even the water company, so they didn't know about it, and said they would send someone out tomorrow -  (today).  Their monitors showed that 11 households weren't using their modems, but that could be because the people weren't home, not necessarily an outage.   I am so glad that I called.

So that meant I had to get my laptop on dial-up again.  But for some reason it would not stay on line.   But it was my error, I had a splitter in the line, and when I took that out, it worked, so at least I could tend to some emails.   This desktop was on Live Writer, which doesn't need the internet until it comes time to 'Publish".

The cable company called me back on my cell, and said that they were going to send someone right out, I suppose someone else called it in, too.

When the repair man arrived he showed me that the water company had left the two cable ends sticking up 18" out of the ground, for all the world to see, so they knew what they had done! 

But this repair man didn't do 'maintenance' as he called it, he just repaired to the lines to, and in, people's houses, so we had to wait for a Maintenance Man to drive from Montgomery.

Finally, he showed up, and after 5 hours, it all came back on again.


This was the first time we had plugged in the cargo trailer, but at first, it didn't have any power.  I had taken a picture of the inside of the breaker box, blown it up and printed it, so Jay saw his mistake.  He moved two wires, and we had power to all the circuits, except one.  The little fridge and the air conditioner worked just great. 

Now we just have to see what's is wrong with that last circuit another day.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Formaldehyde. Fridges. Solar. Trash. Battery. RV Accidents. Fires. Flood Car? Foil. Leaky Slide?

Coping with formaldehyde in your RV

"The specter of that old invisible, dangerous gas, formaldehyde, just keeps coming back. This week the news reports on an RVer who bought a used RV from a dealership a while back. Unknown to the customer, the trailer he purchased was an ex-FEMA trailer, used in some emergency that found its way onto the market. Make no mistake, the dealer knew it was an old FEMA trailer, and contrary to law, sold it without notifying the customer of its origins. FEMA trailers are gifts that just keep on giving."

New or used, your RV may contain formaldehyde, a chemical that some say causes serious health problems. What should you do if you have it? Find out."

RV Savvy Tips by Mark Polk
"RV refrigerators are much different than the one in your house. They don’t have compressors and they work off the principle of absorption. You should turn the RV refrigerator on several hours before putting food in it. It is best to leave it on overnight and put your food in it just prior to leaving. Always keep a small thermometer in your RV refrigerator so you can monitor the temperature. Food can begin to go bad at about 40 degrees. Some things that will affect the inside temperatures of your RV refrigerator are:
Putting warm food in the refrigerator. If at all possible put cold food in the refrigerator and freezer prior to leaving on a trip.
Packing the food to close or putting too much in the refrigerator. Air must be able to circulate around the food for the refrigerator to operate properly. Keep a couple of day’s supply of food in the refrigerator and replenish as necessary.
Put a small battery operated fan in the refrigerator to assist with air circulation.
Continuously opening the refrigerator door and leaving it open for periods of time will affect the efficiency of the refrigerator.
The RV refrigerator must be close to level to operate properly.
The outside temperature will affect the operation of the refrigerator. In hot temperatures try to park the RV in shaded areas, especially on the side of the RV where the refrigerator is located. You can also install a thermostatically controlled refrigerator vent fan that will move the hot air out from behind the refrigerator and make it operate more efficiently. "

Defrost your refrigerator the easy way

"If you are a fulltimer you've no doubt noticed that over time ice builds up on the cooling fins of your refrigerator. And you've probably dreaded having to unload all your food to defrost.
Try this instead. Buy a small, cheap, plastic fan and place it on the top shelf of your refrigerator (move all the food to the lower shelves) and aim it at the fins. Plug it in and close the reefer door.
The air from the fan will defrost the fins in about an hour. After 20 minutes or so, open the door and re-direct the fan at the spots that are still icy. You can also slide sheets of the loosened ice off the fins and discard. Afterward your fridge will work more efficiently, and you won't lose any food in the process."


Run a conventional home refrigerator on solar?
"The typical RV refrigerator differs greatly from the conventional "home" model: The principle operating fuel is propane working under the "absorption" principle. The home-style refrigerator depends on an electrically driven motor compressor. Some RVers consider the compressor style refrigerator "safer," especially after hearing disturbing reports about RV refrigerators being recalled for creating possible fire dangers.

If you were to RV solely at campgrounds with electrical hookups, using a compressor-style refrigerator in your RV wouldn't present a problem. But away from shore power, things get a bit tricky.

The question: Can you use a solar panel array to run a conventional home-style refrigerator in your RV? RV solar enthusiast James Mannett, addresses the question.

James first suggests a comparison of power consumption: A propane fridge consumes about 0.5 amps at 12 volts, roughly 6 watts or 12 amp/hours per day. For comparison, a new Energy Star household refrigerator uses about 1 amp at 120 volts--much more on start up. To use this refrigerator in an RV, an inverter will be needed. Consumption translates to about 13 amps at 12 volts, allowing for inverter efficiency loss. End result: 156 watts or 125 amp/hours per day (assuming a 40% duty cycle). Bottom line: The household unit will consume 20 times the amount electricity than the propane refrigerator, just about 60% of the stored energy in two RV batteries in one 24 hour period.
More at:

Part 2:
"Alternative" RV refrigerator for solar use
"In our last post we talked about whether or not it was feasible to run a conventional home-style shore power refrigerator on solar. Bottom line: It could be done, but just how feasible was clearly in doubt. Readers were quick to respond.

Writes Mike, "But what about an Engel fridge? These use a 12-volt swing compressor rather than a 120-volt rotary compressor found on a home fridge. The advantage is that an Engle compressor does not have the big surge current on start-up typical of a 120-volt home fridge. Plus running efficiency is much better with the Engel compared to a typical home fridge."
What about an Engel refrigerator, indeed? We pulled the specs for an Engel "in cabinet" style refrigerator and found the info quite interesting: The Engel is indeed a pretty high efficiency device, and depending on your lifestyle and travel plans, might work out for an alternative to hooking up the typical LP fired RV refrigerator.

Here's the breakdown:
The Galley Queen in our family likes to keep her refrigerator COLD, as in, really cold. We travel in weather that's all over the map, if you will. We're most comfortable when we're somewhere where we don't need to run the air conditioning, so we'll pick Engel's specs for operating their SR70F unit in an ambient air temperature of 77 degrees (all figures Fahrenheit) and keeping the inside of the box a chilly 36 degrees. At that rate, the Engel would run a 40% duty cycle and consume a seemingly modest 1.3 amp/hour. Head out to a little warmer zone, say 95 degree ambient, keeping that same chill on runs the Engel's swing compressor 95% of the time for a draw of 2.9 amps/hour.

For us this would translate to 374 watts of power per day in the cooler zone, and a whopping 835 if we headed into warmer climates. Other RVers might be happy with keeping their beer cool at 41 degrees. In the cooler area you'd be talking about 288 watts per day, and in the higher heat zone, 576 watts consumed. All in all, if you have the solar panel capacity, it could work for you.

As my mentor used to say, "But on the other hand . . ." The other hand is, the Engel built-in SR70F model we mention is a 60 quart unit, that is when translated, a 2 cubic foot model. If you're RVing solo and keep a little bit on hand, this could be OK for cold storage capacity, but if our lifestyle is any indicator, two people grabbing a cold one and keeping vittles on hand for more than a day or two, there could be a problem.
Engle does build larger capacity coolers; these aren't "built in" rigs, but rather portable chest type affairs. The larger the box, the greater the power consumption applies. Thanks to all who gave us feedback!
For more information on the Engel line, visit their web site." From:

 Pick up trash and feel good.
Boondocking tips with Bob Difley    
"If it irritates you when you find a nice wooded boondocking campsite littered with trash, grit your teeth and walk the site to pick up all the plastic bags and soda cans before you set up camp. You will feel better and enjoy the site more.
When you leave, the last thing to do is walk the site again and pick up what escaped you (I know you wouldn't leave trash intentionally). Don't forget to clean out un-burnables from the fire pit. Maybe the next boondocker will appreciate finding a clean campsite and take the hint."

"Always put your campfire totally out before leaving your campsite. Stir up the ashes with water until they're like mud. A fire is totally out if you can touch a piece of paper to the ashes or charred wood without any visible heat effect to the paper."

Advice about checking your battery's condition.
"When you check the condition of your battery using the monitor panel make sure the RV is not plugged in to shore power.
If it is, you will get a false reading (fully charged). To get a more accurate reading of the battery's condition check the monitor panel when the unit is not plugged in and turn a couple of overhead lights on to place a small load on the battery."  Tech Tips from Mark Polk.

Getting more life from your batteries
"You can get more life -- and boondocking days -- out of your batteries if you replace the factory-installed 12-volt deep cycle battery/ies with two six-volt golf cart batteries.
They will take a deeper discharge without degrading, which allows you to go longer without having to recharge, and the higher density will also produce more total amp hours. Wired in series (rather than parallel) they will last five years and longer -- commonly seven years or more with proper care and maintenance."

Fire Safety Tip from Mac McCoy
"If you have a quick-disconnect fitting on your water hookup, these hoses can be unhooked instantly to fight a fire. If a nearby coach is burning and you cannot move your coach but can safely stay close enough to keep it hosed down, you may be able to save it."
Learn more about Mac and fire safety.

Insurance company lists most common RV "accidents"

"If lizards could RV, perhaps they could tell us a thing or two. Wait! Maybe they do! Geico Insurance, the company with the cool, reptilian mascot, says they've boiled down the seven most common causes of RV "accidents." Listen up, maybe we can learn something from the lizard guy.
1. Fire!: The chief cause, LP gas leaks.
2. Blown tires: Of these, the most common causes are under-inflation or overloading.
3. Awning and step losses: Apparently we'd be surprised at the number of RVers who pull out of camp before retracting the steps or rolling in the awning.
4. Low bridge! Not knowing (or properly observing) how tall an RV is leads to plenty of claims for clobbering bridges and gas station canopies.
5. Brake and steering problems: Again, mechanical issues aren't necessarily the blame, but rather, not loading the rig evenly leading to drivability problems.
6. Slide out slaughter: Not unlike #3, driving off with the slide out deployed can lead to serious claims consequences.
7. Infest-a-pest: Bugs, rats, mice, a squirrels, all of them find stored RVs irresistible, especially wires and plastic lines."

 Gray Tank Odors.
"Over time grease and residue builds up in the gray tank and it causes a foul odor, not to mention how it is affecting the tank and valve assembly.
Periodically treat the gray tank with environmentally safe holding tank chemicals to avoid odors from the tank.
When the tank is empty you can also add some dishwashing liquid down the drains to help break down grease and residue build up."

Don't buy a flood damaged car or RV.
Many will be for sale after the northwest floods.
FREE:  Check for a flood car here:     Just enter the VIN.

Generator Exhaust.
"When you camp in the close proximity to other RVs and plan to use your generator, be sure to position your rig so it's exhaust points away from other RVs.
If you cannot move your RV, place a big box, or something solid to deflect the fumes.
If it were to enter another RV, the results could be deadly."

Foil Tips:

Leaky Slide?
"Described by Texas Innovators LLC as “a virtually maintenance free cure for leaky slide-outs,” both the full-boot and quarter-boot have been well received by both customers and RV dealers who cite the product's ease of use and superior performance when compared to alternative product solutions such as seals, drip rails, water troughs and slide-out toppers. The custom manufactured slide-out kit – which was previously sold through the Texas Innovators slide-out boot website – includes the made-to-measure slide-out boot, radius molding, Sikaflex 221 sealant, and hardware. The product - which is available in 12 colors - takes approximately one hour to install.

Rv slide out fix and replace your awing with the slide out boot. Made by Texas Innovators\ "


Jay needed a haircut, and so as it was Wednesday we went into town.  I didn't really need anything, and toyed with the idea of getting my hair cut, too.   But there was only one beautician, and she took such a long time tending the lady in front of Jay, I knew I just didn't want to stay there.

We stopped at a couple of thrift shops and I bought Misty a ceramic food dish with paw prints on it.  Now, all my animals have ceramic bowls, as plastic is not good for them.  Especially cats, as they can get 'chin acne' from plastic dishes.

I also bought an unusual Corelle plate, I'd like to have more of these.
After searching through Corelle sites, current and discontinued, I still can't find the pattern's name.  Anyone know?
Not many have a pattern in the middle and have scalloped edges.

After stops at O'Reilly's to get some new gas props for the van's back hatch, Kroger's to find more grocery bargains, and Petsmart for more canned cat food, we came home.

Talk about high gas prices, but have you priced a quart of oil at an auto parts store lately?  I'll wait until the next time I go to Walmart and buy a big 5 qt. jug of Valvoline!  It's nearly $3 a quart cheaper.

Still no rain, and so warm and humid that we had to run the AC.  But the night time temperature is going down to 40° on Saturday.