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Archive for the ‘Faith Family and Friends’ Category

If a Creator God exists, would He or She or It…  prefer a kind of sodden blockhead who worships while understanding nothing?  Or would He prefer His votaries to admire the real universe in all its intricacy?
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Insensitive To Silence
Weaker, Sicker And Poorer
2019 Don’t Be Small
2018 Persistence
2017 Are You A Loser?
2016 Constitution And Conscience
2015 Separate, Fearful And Imprisoned
2014 Something Worth Making
2013 Absolutely
2012 Can Do
2011 Wise Criticism

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Both borderline science and many religions are motivated in part by a serious concern about the nature of the universe and our role in it, and for this reason merit our consideration and regard.  In addition, I think it possible that many religions involve at their cores an attempt to come to grips with profound mysteries of our individual life histories, as described in the last chapter.  But both in borderline science and in organized religion there is much that is specious or dangerous.  While the practitioners of such doctrines often wish there were no criticisms to which they are expected to reply, skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep insights can be winnowed from deep nonsense.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Early Knowledge
Seen Any Messages Lately?
2019 I Don’t Think We’ll Be Serving Them Cake
2018 New And Old
2017 Ever
2016 At The Center
2015 True Value In Life
2014 A Potential To Be Concerned
2013 Fine No More
2012 Have You Checked Your Height Lately?
2011 Are You Convinced?

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I may not have been sure about what really did interest me, but I was absolutely sure about what didn’t.
    —    Albert Camus
At 30 a man should know himself like the palm of his hand, know the exact number of his defects and qualities, know how far he can go, foretell his failures – be what he is.  And, above all, accept these things.
    —     Albert Camus
[Happy Birthday, son.  Listen to your heart and stay true to it…
Love Always,
    —    Mum and Dad]
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On This Day In:
2020 Make A Fuss
2019 Hopefully, You’re Learning To Forgive
2018 Enjoy The Sunsets As Well As The Sunrises
2017 Enjoy
2016 I Got A Feeling
2015 Fiction Leading To History
2014 A Self-Correcting Process
2013 None But He Knows
2012 99% Are Demanding
2011 All In The Family
Take Your Pick

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It’s like deja-vu, all over again.
    —    Yogi Berra
[Happy Birthday, Sis!!   It’s not the age in the mirror that counts;  it’s the youth in your heart.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 To My Idealistic Sister
2019 Respect For My Sister
2018 I Trust Cows
No Boundary
2017 Don’t Sink Now
2016 A Burning Passion To Teach Freedom
2015 Before Debit (And Credit) Cards
2014 Herding Cats
2013 Ooops!
2012 Understand A Great Truth
2011 Start Here…
2010 Random Acts of Vandalism On Easter Weekend…

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Hope is definitely not the same thing as optimism.  It is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out.
    —    Václev Havel
[Happy Birthday, Mom!
You raised me with optimism, hope and faith…  Love, Kevin]
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On This Day In:
2020 Thank You (To Those Who Serve)
Hanging In There
2019 Her Job, Too
2018 Just Another Song I Like
Earlier Still
2017 Ten To Go
2016 Unstable Emergence
2015 88
2014 Some One-Liners Are Too Easy
2013 Greatness
2012 Memories Of Arlington
2011 Wake Up

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I don’t have any solution, but I certainly admire the problem.
    —    Ashleigh Brilliant
[Happy Birthday to me!    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Still Measuring
2019 Living On The Couch
Who Am I – One Interpretation
2018 A Gardening Goal: Feed The Flowers
2017 Freakishly Happy Cowboy
2016 One More, Please
2015 Infinite Adventure
2014 Unpaved
2013 Headstones
2012 Keeping Young
2011 Lessons Well Learned

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Today my wife and I received our second COVID-19 vaccine doses.  We both got the Pfizer version.  Now we wait fourteen days for the full effect to kick and and then we will be able to resume fairly “normal” life.
Saying that, we anticipate wearing masks in public until summer of 2022.  Wearing masks IS NOW the new normal until scientists can advise about the various strains of COVID and the effectiveness of the current vaccines against them.
What’s different then?  We anticipate “some” travel restrictions will be lifted and we’ll be able to visit family in Liverpool and go other places (stores and restaurants) without too much worry.  We also are looking forward to more casual and comfortable visits with family members (summer BBQ’s, Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners).
We have lost friends and loved ones and we are grateful to have gotten through this pandemic by the grace of God, the luck of fate, the hard work of all the scientists and first line care givers and other critical staff who have worked throughout this crisis, and (probably not least importantly) by wearing masks, social distancing and washing our hands.
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On This Day In:
2020 Democratic Aspiration
2019 Soul Before Will
2018 Small Things
2017 Clear And Warm To Me
2016 Ripple
2015 Amazing Or Full Of Wonder?
2014 Are You Confused?
2013 But The Odds Are Against It
2012 Far Better Off With Books
2011 Timid And Fainthearted

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I just want to thank everyone who made this day necessary.
    —   Yogi Berra
[Happy birthday, Bro!  And, yeah, I still need my little (younger) brother…  Love, ya.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Especially You, Bro
Words Without Explanation
2019 Enjoy!
2018 Happy Birthday, Bro!
2017 Love Can Change The World In A Minute
2016 60, Little Bro!
2015 Vision and Courage
2014 58 – Little Bro
2013 New Adventures And Old Hopes
Caving In
2012 Bits And Bobs And Birthdays
Always Hope
2011 Wet Snow And Long Hills

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Burn old logs.  Drink old wine.  Read old books.  Keep old friends.
   —   Alfonso X of Spain
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On This Day In:
2020 Always
2019 #45 Is More Of A Piddle Than A Puddle
2018 Found Out
A Message To The “Wanna Be” Dictator On Leadership
2017 Still Waiting…
2016 Same Old, Same Old
2015 Shout!
2014 I Hear Voices
2013 Ethics And Standards
2012 Swing Higher
2011 Convicted For Life

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The giver is bigger than the receiver.  If you want to be large, larger than life, learn to Give.  Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get – only with what you are expecting to give – which is everything.
 
The importance of giving, blessing others can never be over emphasized because there’s always joy in giving.  Learn to make someone happy by acts of giving.
 
    —    Katharine Hepburn
(This quote was found on Facebook)
 
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On This Day In:
2020 The Sun Came Out
  Not A Wink On Guard
2019 The Importance Of A Deadline
  Chaos Is Not Really A New Remedy
2018 History Will Judge Harshly
  Father Time, Perhaps?
2017 Odds Are
2016 Prayer, Too
2015 History, n.
2014 See It Sometime
2013 Precious Friend
2012 It Couldn’t Be Done
  Feeling Surrounded?
2011 Surprise!
   

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We do not have to become heroes overnight.  Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down.
    —   Eleanor Roosevelt
[Sarah, Happy Birthday!!
Congrats on your recent certificate!  Keep taking your steps.  We are proud of you!!
Love Always,
Mum & Dad]
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On This Day In:
2020 Giving Thanks
2019 One A Day
2018 Try
2017 You’re Starting To Make Us Feel Old
2016 Focus
2015 Challenging Legacy
2014 Happy 21st Birthday!
2013
2012 Trust Him Smile
2011 Why Change?

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But we don’t yet know whether the Universe is open or closed.  More than that, there are a few astronomers who doubt that the redshift of distant galaxies is due to the doppler effect, who are skeptical of the expanding Universe and the Big Bang.  Perhaps our descendants will regard our present ignorance with as much sympathy as we feel to the ancients for not knowing the Earth went around the Sun.  If the general picture, however, of a Big Bang followed by an expanding Universe is correct, what happened before that?  Was the Universe devoid of all matter and then the matter suddenly somehow created, how did that happen?  In many cultures, the customary answer is that a God or Gods created the Universe out of nothing.  But if we wish to pursue this question courageously, we must of course ask the next question: where did God come from?  If we decide that this is an unanswerable question, why not save a step and conclude that the origin of the Universe is an unanswerable question?  Or, if we say that God always existed, why not save a step, and conclude that the Universe always existed?  That there’s no need for a creation, it was always here.  These are not easy questions.  Cosmology brings us face to face with the deepest mysteries, questions that were once treated only in religion and myth.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Increasing Importance
And Now Joe
2019 But Yours
2018 And Smile More Often
2017 He’s Keeping The Light On For Us
2016 The Results Of Trying Too Hard
2015 Make Me Look
2014 Fresh Drink
2013 Good Business
2012 Unsure Spirit
2011 A Lost Valuable

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For the last week, it’s been in the mid-to-low 70’s to high-60’s here.  So my better half decided yesterday that our front yard needed it’s first cutting of the year.  The gardener / laborer (me) took care of that while the chief chef and bottle washer (her) went off for some groceries.  While I was doing the mowing I noticed we got our first rose of the year in our front path.  We have a series of miniature rose bushes on one side of our front path.  There on the smallest bush, was a tiny rose barely the size of the tip of my thumb.  I mentioned this to my wife and she said there is also a single rose out in the backyard.  And, below are the two of them…

2021 First “mini” rose on the front path…

2021 First rose in the backyard…

The backyard (red) rose is not a “mini”, but it’s also not a normal size of one from a florist.  I guess it is still too early in the season for that size.
I apologize for the fuzzy images, but I’ve never claimed to be a decent photographer.  When I tried to shoot between breaths, I could feel my heartbeat shaking my arms / hands.
To paraphrase some quote I’m sure I’ve read somewhere:  “Enjoy the moments of beauty and the days of your life will take care of themselves.”  (Okay, maybe I made that one up.   —  KMAB)
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On This Day In:
2020 Which Is Which
2019 Were You Saying Something?
2018 Ethics Lesson
2017 May I Have Some More, Please?
2016 A Little Lost
2015 This High Place
2014 Elected Madness
2013 Well Written
2012 Related Parts
2011 The King Is Oscar
Better Reputation?

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This afternoon, my wife and I both got our first COVID vaccine shots!  We’re also scheduled for our 2nd shots towards the end of March.  Two weeks after that we should be “fairly” safe from COVID.  So far (after 6 hrs), the only after-effects are a little shoulder soreness at the injection site.
It is important for everyone to understand: the vaccines do NOT prevent you from getting COVID or from developing long-term  COVID related illnesses OR transmitting COVID to others.  The vaccines are only supposed to prevent you from getting “seriously” ill and dying.  We got the Pfizer version which is 95% effective at preventing “serious” illness and was 100% effective preventing deaths during trials.  We still do not know how long the vaccines remain effective and / or if we will need periodic boosters (like the annual flu shots).
The bottom line is that even after we have reached some level of local / state / national / worldwide herd immunity, we will probably need to keep wearing masks and maintaining “some” social distancing.  We just don’t know enough yet and we will have to follow the science / data when it becomes available…
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On This Day In:
2020 Decide, Support, Vote
2019 Aware Some
2018 Know Any Christians?
2017 The Only Thing I Can Give…
2016 Wiser But Less Cocksure
2015 Not Today
Wicked
2014 …Am Too
2013 Credible?
2012 Both
2011 Risking Hidden Linkage

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The days pass slowly,
but the weeks, months and years
fly into the past.
In the dark,
I listen to you breathe
and I feel peace.
I close my eyes each night
and pray to see your smile again
in the morning.
With the dawn
I seek your touch
and lightly move the hair from your forehead.
I whisper in your ear
and you brush me away
as you stir from sleep.
The garden sun warms,
the birds call from the trees
and a first cup of coffee
fully wakes you.
The day passes slowly…
A touch, a smile, a hug, a laugh.
Time flows.
We are together
and
it is enough.
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On This Day In:
2020 A Post-Valentine Thought
2019 A Little Magic
‘Cause It Makes Me Feel Happy
The Mark Against Your Name
2018 Nice To Meet You
2017 All Nations & Religions
2016 Given The Choice
Why Is He Wearing Red?
2015 Within The System
2014 None But…
2013 Obviously Longer
2012 A Childhood Poem
Who Are You Callin’ Leather-Faced?
2011 In No Particular Order
The Need For Proof

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