Friday, December 23, 2011

Jingle Barks

No Christmas is complete without dogs barking Jingle Bells.

Four for Fridays

Hello everybody, welcome back to Four Fridays! Sorry for a such a late post. It's my day off for the holidays and I'm doing something that I haven't done in a awhile...SLEEP IN! Here are some random questions.

1) Are you a planner or are you the spontaneous type?

2) What your holiday plans?

3) Are you bummed out that this isn't going to be a white Christmas?

4) What is your favorite Sesame Street character?

Enjoy your holidays!

Open Blog - Friday & Weekend

Love and Best Wishes to All!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

A Christmas Song for Ya!

For the longest time I had all of the Heart albums except for one-A Lovemonger's Christmas. After searching for this album pretty much since it's release in 2001, it was Tender Heart Bear that tracked the album down recently. Fittingly, just right before Christmas....


Tomorrow, don’t forget to pick up the Christmas presents you guys put on layaway for me!

PS - Jed, if I get a 5th, I'll share it with you!!!

Wow! Comet Lovejoy Time Lapse from the ISS

Comet Lovejoy is a sungrazing comet that recently passed VERY close to the Sun. Many astronomers thought it would burn up on this passage, but it survived and is now a nice morning comet for the southern hemisphere.

And for astronauts on the ISS who captured this amazing video!

Watch all the lightning as before the comet rises over the horizon followed by the blinding dawn. It is much easier to get this from space when you don't have the brightening twilight you get on Earth. You can even see the layers of Earth's atmosphere...stunning!

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

"Why no bid process for Festival Hall?"

Bumped again, for new developments.  See below.

Originally posted Wednesday, November 23, 2011, at 9:15 PM:

The first letter to the editor here,, from Patrick Flynn of Caledonia, concerns the recent no-bid renewal of VenuWorks' contract to run Racine's Festival Hall. I've seen this mentioned before in a couple of comments on other sites, but no official story anywhere.

From Mr. Flynn's letter: "Last week, the City of Racine renewed the three-year management contract with Venuworks for Festival Hall. This contract was never let out for bids despite the fact that interested parties have been requesting a bidding process."

So, what gives? Why were the Oasis and the boat launch contract renewals let out for bid, but not Festival Hall's? Is that even legal? It certainly appears less than aboveboard. An explanation is in order. What's going on, lying John?
 _______ ________________________________________

December  21, 2011

From The Journal "Same company to manage Racine Civic Centre"

VenuWorks gets the contract without any bids. While the man who took the Oasis from a gang hangout to an attraction on North Beach had his contract bid out and lost it. VenuWorks' contract with Racine is $70,000 a year. The Oasis' old contract was worth about $11,000 a year.

The stink in City Hall doesn't come from mold.

Guess who got Christmas cookies?

Tender Heart Bear and drewzepmeister gave me a plate of 13 different kinds of homemade Christmas cookies today. Thank you guys so much, and especially you, THB, because I know you did the baking.

The Irregulars are just a swell bunch of people. My stomach says so.

Dear Madame Zoltar

Hello, my elfin friends! How are you? I know, I know. It s-worded. Half an inch the other night. I’ve had time to process and accept it, so from now on I’ll call it by it’s real name: snoop, snuff, er, snot, oh my, I’m sorry, SNOW, damnit, snow! OK, it’s December and it snowed. I really should get over it. And I have. Almost. Until the next time it snobs.

The weather now appears to have been a bad omen for our sainted, most magnificent, illustrious, glorious Green Bay Packers, who, sadly, lost a game to the lowly Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday past. Oh my, oh my, oh my. Oh dear. I guess I’m processing the loss, but I don’t know how long it will me take to get over it. I was so tempted to add to the game with some psychic phenomena, but I promised not to interfere. With that, our heroes stumbled and fell. Well, then, good, they got that out of the way and there is no more pressure to maintain a prefect record. Now, the Packers can do what they do best: play football. Sunday hence, on Christmas Day, Green Bay will meet archenemy the Chicago Bears, at 7:20 PM, Lambeau Field. What better gift for His birthday than a sound thrashing of the Bears? Maul the Bears, Packers! Muzzle them.

Christmas is only four days away and I still haven’t finished all of my decorating and shopping. Junior could do some of the decorating, but the only time I see him is when I’m baking Christmas cookies. Well, what needs to get done, will, and what doesn’t, won’t. It all turns out fine on Christmas Day. Those of you stressing out in the hustle and the bustle of the holidays, remember to take time out for yourselves. Certainly you can find fifteen minutes to do some deep breathing exercises and knock back a few shots of your favorite libation. You owe it to yourselves. Unwind, deflate, relax.

In the spirit of the season, here is a 1952 cartoon, “Pluto’s Christmas Tree”:

Oh my, tee-hee, I really enjoy those rascals, Chip and Dale. Poor Pluto.

Thank you for taking time out of your busy holiday schedule to read my blog. I so enjoy our visits. I also love the feelings of goodwill that come with Christmas. I hope that all of you have joyous holidays. Peace on earth.

What does Santa’s list say about you? Find out:

Now be careful my dear, dear Irregulars and regulars, just in case it snores again. I would like a white Christmas, but that doesn’t necessarily mean 10 inches. Please enjoy making each other happy. Palpebrate!

Open Blog - Wednesday & Thursday

Let's act like kids again.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

More Recommended Reading

From RacineUncovered:

Click on the link above to be taken to the story.

These lawsuits were announced awhile back. Now they're moving forward. Like the other lawsuit, these also stem from Dickert's Neighborhood Stabilization Program. Word on the street is that another principal player in this tragicomedy will soon be filing suit against Racine.

It's not like some people haven't been hollering about this over and over and over for a long, long time. But the powers that be, including the Journal Times, refuse to acknowledge this festering mess.

Thank you, lying John. Without a doubt, you will win the title of Racine's Most Expensive Mayor Ever. Party on!

Monday, December 19, 2011

The First Senior Moment

And that's what happened to the dinosaurs.

The Muppets at CERN

I just saw the Muppets yesterday and enjoyed it. If you have been thinking about seeing it and you like the Muppets, put it on your list.

I don't think it's a spoiler to tell you the Muppets get the gang back together again in the movie. They decide to round up the gang via montage. Look where they find Bunsen Honeydew and Beaker.

Yep, that's the ATLAS detector at CERN. Turns out Honeydew and Beaker spent their down time looking for the Higgs Boson. Yeah, I let out a little "squee" when I saw this.

Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.

Merry Christmas!

Yes it is time for me to write about Christmas.

I think everyone has forgotten the true meaning of the Christmas Holiday. This is suppose to be about Baby Jesus born to Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem. He was wrapped in cloth and laid in a manger in a barn. They had visits from the animals, wisemen and angels. They brought Mary and Joseph gifts.

I remember growing up and going to church to celebrate Christmas about Jesus being born. This is the way I had raised my kids. Then all of a sudden I am listening to my nieces telling my sister what they want for Christmas. The things that they wanted was really expensive. I asked one of my nieces if they know the true meaning of Christmas. She said yes just to tell my mom what I want for Christmas and I will get what I want. I was really shocked what came out of her mouth. I heard the same thing from my boyfriends son saying what he wanted his grandparents to get him for Christmas. Then my youngest daughter told me he said he can get what ever he wants from his grandparents. I know he was never taught this from his dad. That is not what you would hear from my kids.

When I was living back in Illinois my kids and I would help out with a live nativity scene for church. The kids loved to do this with my parents. You should have seen my son and my dad just goofing around getting ready for it. I wish I would have taken pictures of them. My ex-husband would never take part in this with us.

I love going around looking at the Christmas decorations. I remember when I was younger my dad taking my sisters and I around looking at the decorations. My dad has been gone for about fifteen years and I miss him so much.  This was his favorite holiday and the one holiday I really like. There are times I get sad because I think of my dad.

When I was growing up my parents would have the family and friends coming over to visit during the week of Christmas and New Years. Some of them would call and ask if they could bring one of there friends and my parents would never say no. This is how I was raised you never say no to people and you share what ever food you have with people. There was also one Christmas my dad was laid off his job. That Christmas we really didn't get anything from our parents but we where happy with what we did get. My mom would make all her homemade cookies and give them out to family and friends. I took on this tradition with my mom.

 Now it is all about getting what you want not about being with your family and friends. I really miss seeing my family that I use to see when I was younger. Some of my cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents have passed away.

I just wish some of the kids would just realize how it was for us when we were younger. The really should get the real reason for Christmas.

I also have fun putting up the Christmas tree and the decorations in the house. While I was married my ex-husband started a Christmas village for me and my family kept it going. I have about a fifty piece village to put under the tree. I haven't put it up in the last two years because we don't have the room for it.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas and please be safe. I am leaving you with a Christmas song and video!♥

Open Blog - Monday & Tuesday

Here we go again.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Recommended Reading

From RacineUncovered:

Click the link above to be taken to the story.

The lawyers always win.

I Finally Got My Tree Up

Ahhhhhh the smell of fresh pine.

Ahhhhhh the smell of fresh pine.

"T-Mobile's Home For The Holidays Surprise "

"With Director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and Musical Director Paul Mirkovich at the helm, T-Mobile surprises shoppers at the Chicagoland area's Woodfield Mall with a surprise performance and updated spin on the holiday classic, '(There's No Place Like) Home For The Holidays.'"

Thanks to SER for sending me a link to this.

My Top 2011 Albums (That I Bought)

t's that time of the year again. The year end reviews, except this year I didn't get too many 2011 album releases. Money's tighter now and spent it on the more familiar names like Yes' Fly From Here. Instead, I bought many albums from rummage sales and burned many CD's from the local library, trying to fill the gaps and the holes in my collection. This year, I think I got too many albums (Is there a such things as too much music?) and now I've literary got stacks of vinyl, cassettes and CD's piled everywhere around me. Some of which I haven't gotten a chance to listen to yet, many I have. Here's a list of some of my favorites I've gotten my hands on this year...

John Lennon John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band 1970 I don't know why I never gotten any this sooner. Maybe it was mine preference for Paul McCartney. Any rate, this album is FANTASTIC! Inspired by his primal therapy, Lennon creates a revolutionary and harrowing set of unflinchingly personal songs, laying out his fears and angers for everyone to hear. Simple, yet extremely intense, Lennon pushes towards themes of child-parent relationships and psychological suffering.

Iron Maiden The Final Frontier 2010 Those who would of thought Iron Maiden was left for the dead are in for a surprise! Sounding much like the '80's Iron Maiden that I fell in love with, the reunited Maiden offers no compromises, just complexities and challenges and many moments of brilliance. It's an engaging effort with a cinematic vision.

XTC Skylarking 1986 Never really heard of XTC till I picked up their Oranges & Lemons at a rummage sale over the summer. I thought that one was phenomenal, yet I thought Skylarking was a notch better. Their lush post psychedelic pop-enhanced sound by detailed sweeping instrumentation reminds me of the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds, the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's and REM's Murmur all wrapped up in a multidimensional package. Just plainly sheer brilliancy!

Mott the Hoople Mott 1973 "The rock and roll circus is back in town" sings frontman Ian Hunter in a line from "The Ballad of Mott the Hoople". The truth it may seem. Mott the Hoople keeps it straight forward, yet eccentric as they drive home with a collection of songs of road fraught with exhaustion, disillusionment and dashed hopes all told with a wry sense of humor.

Bruce Springsteen Working on a Dream 2009 Working On A Dream is the Boss's most exuberant and pop-orientated album for a long time. It is as if the swell of goodwill sweeping across anyone's soul...Bright and punchy, there is no pandering here, with Springsteen and the trusty E Street Band rocking and rolling with free abandon and sounding like they thoroughly enjoyed every single moment recording the album.

Marshall Tucker Band Running Like the Wind
1979 Like their southern colleges the Allman Brothers Band, the Marshall Tucker Band are known for their extended free flowing instrumental jams. The nine plus minute country flavored title track could take a listener on a dreamy ride across the wild western skyline interweaving flutes, guitars and fiddles. Aimless as it may sound, but it shows the strong musicianship within the Marshall Tucker Band.

Asia Phoenix 2008 Like the Phoenix of the title of their 2008 album, Asia has risen from the ashes and made their first studio album with their original lineup in a quarter century. This album have could easily followed their debut in the terms of musicianship. While 1983's Alpha was more pop oriented, Phoenix has a suppleness when they stretch out into multi-part suites while retaining a knack for big, arena pop hooks.

Yes Fly From Here 2011 A decade since their latest studio
album, Yes pulls off a keeper. Similar to their 1980 release of Drama in the terms of the lineup and feel, except the singer is the unknown Jon Anderson sound alike Benoit David. Drawing comparisons to the early days, the 25 minute eight part suite "Fly From Here" presents a depth and lushness that makes one think.

Black Keys Thickfreakness 2003 Inspired by the their success of last years' release of Brothers, it was only fitting to check out some of their older material. Recorded in the drummer Patrick Carney's basement in a single day, the Black Keys wail is hot, primal, and heartfelt. Dan Auerback's lean but meaty guitar lines and room-filling vocals drag the blues into the 21st century through sheer force of will without sounding like these guys are in any way mocking their influences.

UFO Obsession 1978 The last studio album to feature star guitarist Micheal Schenker. It did indeed contain lots of prime metal cuts. Much of the album is fun and carefree. The album kicks into gear with melodic tasty rockers without sounding lame and in your face. Under appreciated and often overlooked...

Too many albums and too little time....Some of them worth mentioning on this list. Steely Dan's Aja offers some great jazz rock. The North Mississippi Allstars Hernando has got some exceptional straight forward bluesy rock while Joe Satriani coughs up some extreme guitar work in The Extremist. Heart put out a great Christmas album in the Lovemonger's Christmas. The Dixie Dregs laid out some usual shit, blending southern fried boogie with progressive instrumental rock in the Night of the Living Dregs. Muse's Black Holes and Revelations rock!

Coming soon.... the worst of 2011 plus the best dust blowers (if time applies.

Useless Information

Did you know:

In the mid-1880s the Mohawk Indian started as ironworkers when they were hired as unskilled laborers to build a bridge over the St. Lawrence River onto Mohawk land.

Working in New York City they helped build prominent landmarks, including the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, the George Washington Bridge, and the World Trade Center.