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Archive for the ‘Family and Friends’ Category

First off:  Merry Christmas to all… !!
Second:  Hug everyone at your table and say a prayer of blessings for absent friends and family.
Third:  Please remember in your thoughts all of the first responders and essential workers who are risking their health and the safety of their families to be on the job where we need them.  Police, firefighters, EMTs, health workers, PPE and vaccine manufacturers, supermarket / food-store / essential services staff, transportation (truck drivers and delivery) staff,  our military defending us around the world and our civilian government employees working to keep our water, food and air clean.
Finally:  Please, please, please… 
Wash your hands frequently
Wear a mask when out of your home
Practice social distancing (particularly indoors), and,
Get your vaccine / booster shot(s) as soon as you are eligible.
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On This Day In:
2020 Christmas Wishes For 2020
Best Wishes For All
2019 My Thoughts About The X-mas Turkey…
2018 Merry X-mas – 2018
2017 Focus On Christmas — 2017
2016 Merry X-mas – 2016
2015 Merry X-mas – 2015
2014 Merry X-mas – 2014
2013 Merry X-mas – 2013
2012 Merry Christmas – 2012
2011 I Have Seen

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Yesterday was our 37th wedding anniversary.  After dinner together, my wife retired to the living room to watch TV for the evening.  I retired to my “computer” room to continue blogging and surfing.
About 9pm, the power went out for our entire block – at least our side of the street anyway.  About 30 minutes later, it went out for the other side, too.  We were not in the middle of a storm.  No rain.  No wind.  Just nighttime and the chill of early December…
After lighting a half-dozen candles in our open-layout kitchen / living room and with nothing else to do, my wife curled up in a recliner and I got out one of my guitars.  I proceeded to practice my strumming, chord transitions, some scales (major, minor and pentatonic) and my (very basic) attempt at a twelve bar blues.  My wife was relatively unimpressed.  She is not a fan of scales – even “enhanced” scales (they are a bit more musical).  She said my playing is “improving” and “when you are actually playing, it’s quite relaxing“.  She was referring to my strumming and chords.
Ah, well, slowly, slowly…
Power was restored just after 11pm.  About one hour ahead of the power company’s website prediction of “between 12 and 1 AM”.  I chided my wife this was the longest she’d ever sat and listened to me “play” guitar.  She normally leaves the room as soon as I start on scales.  LoL!!  All in all, a pleasant way to spend an anniversary evening.
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On This Day In:
2020 Wonder And Dreams
Gatherin’ Up The Tears
2019 I Resemble That Remark… (7!)
2018 Mueller Investigation Comparison To #LyingDonald
2017 #DonTheCon And Russian Collusion
2016 Balance The Truth
2015 Still Itchin’
2014 One Life
2013 Reason Is Your Light
2012 Bordering Manhood
2011 Even Christ Couldn’t

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My Love

Favorite Line(s):
Something happened to my heart the day that I met you
Something that I never felt before
You are always on my mind no matter what I do
And everyday it seems that I want you more
[Happy 37th Anniversary, Hil
You are my something and it still happens!!
Love Always,
Your Kev
XXX
00
X
    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Happy 36th Anniversary, Hil!!
2019 Sampling 3:16
Happy 35th Anniversary, Hil!!
2018 Happy 34th Anniversary, Hil!!
2017 Happy 33rd Anniversary, Hil!!
2016 Happy 32nd Anniversary, Hil!!
2015 Happy Anniversary Hil!!
2014 30th Wedding Anniversary
2013 Number 29 (And Counting)
2012 Hammer ‘N Roses
Happy Anniversary
2011 I Can Hear It Now

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It’s better to hang out with people better than you.  Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.
    —    Warren Buffett
Happy Birthday, Hil!!  Our friendship / marriage has definitely made me a better person…
All my love,
Always!
Your Kev
XXX
00
X
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On This Day In:
2020 A Mandelbrot Set
I Still Can’t…
2019 Proposing A Happy Birthday
35 Years Later
2018 Forever
2017 Too Good To Be True
Plain Speaking
2016 She Is Still Singing
2015 Don’t Complain
2014 Nothing Is The Same
Orange October (XII) – Giants Win Game 7 (3 To 2) And World Series (4 To 3)
2013 Hours, Days, And Years
2012 In Kev Are In Hil
2011 No Game, Didn’t Really Happen
A Good Post

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Today my wife and I both got our COVID booster shots!!  We got same day scheduling at the pharmacy in our local supermarket.
Six(6) months and two days after receiving our second original vaccination.
No ill effects to speak of other than a slight soreness at the shot location which passed after a couple of hours.  (That was me.  Hil had NO effects.)
If everything works out, we should be good to go until next year when they’ll probably have an annual regime in place.  Time will tell…
If you have not received your vaccinations yet…  Get on it!  Protect your health and let’s get living our lives back to normal.  If you have received your initial vaccinations, but not your booster shot – get it scheduled as soon as you are eligible.  Life (and health) is too precious to risk losing it over politics.
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On This Day In:
2020 Three Down, Four To Go
Twenty-Four ‘Til You
2019 Two Down, Five To Go
2018 Year One, Done!
2017 First Day Of Retirement!
2016 Revere And Criticize
2015 Global Climate Change May Test This Statement
2014 Adaptability Won
2013 Disappeared
2012 Fuller
Life On The Range
More Classics
2011 Stoned Again?
2010 Insubordination… And That’s Why I Love Her!
Losing – Week One

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Happy Birthday, Bec!
Don’t wait for extraordinary opportunities.  Seize common occasions and make them great.  Weak men wait for opportunities;  strong men make them.
    —     Orison Swett Marden
Well, on this latest trip around ol’ Sol…  You’ve gotten engaged and started buying the first home of your own.   Take time to enjoy these early days.  Make memories to keep for a lifetime.  Carpe Diem!
We love you always,
Mum and Dad

XXX
00
X

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On This Day In:
2020 Another Opportunity
Stand Up, Shout Out
2019 Birthday Gifts For Our Daughter
Feeling Age
2018 Seeking To Make A Difference
2017 Happy BD, Bec!
2016 BD Quotes
2015 Princess
2014 Optional
2013 Happy Birthday, Rebecca
2012 Be Not Old
2012 National League Western Division Champions!!!
2011 What Kind Of Work Do You Do?
2010 Another Loser… And Come November

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A friend posted this word on Facebook and I (jokingly) replied I’d have to use it in a future poem.  He replied:  He would look forward to it.  So (okay), then I had to write a poem / ditty…  It’s a joke people!  It’s just a joke…  (Apologies to Disney and Mary Poppins.)

Floccinaucinihilipilification*

I knew a few Republicans
When I was just a lad,
They would call me Democrat
And tell me I was bad.
And then one day
I learned a word
That ended their derision,
The biggest word
They’d ever heard
And this is how it’s said…
Floccinaucinihilipilification
Oh, hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
Hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
I traveled all around the states
And every where I went
I’d describe Trump Republicans
With never a dissent
They labeled me Antifa
Because we disagreed
But they could not pronounce my word
Because they could not read
Oh, hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
Hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
They’re killing their supporters
By saying not to mask
They say we can be great again
By living in the past
Their candidates are laughable
Their policies bad jokes
They’re labeling us as communists
And trying to stop our vote
Oh, hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
Hum dil a lay ly,
Hum dil a lie
Oh, floccinaucinihilipilification
Floccinaucinihilipilification
[spoken]
Over course they could try to say it backwards
Which would be…
Cation – pilifi – hili – ni – nauci – flocci
But that would be as ridiculous as expecting Faux News or The (Donald) Biggest Loser to tell the truth…
Now, wouldn’t it?
*   (pronounced:)  fläksəˌnôsəˌnīˌhiləˌpiləfiˈkāSHən/
Noun:  the action or habit of estimating something as worthless.
I believe the word is actually a combination of latin roots which mean (roughly translated):  hairs or fibers of little substance gathered together (like a pilling or a ball of lint).
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On This Day In:
2020 You Too?
Six Degrees
2019 A Branching Stream
Day 9: One Day At A Time
2018 Pity The Nation (Part 2)
Day 1: Redux
2017 Good Blogs, Too
2016 My Prediction For #AmnestyDon
2015 Worth A Try
2014 I’m Feeling It
2013 May I Have A Little More, Please?
2012 Increasing Doubt
2011 You Can’t Touch This

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Over the weekend, I had another music / guitar lesson from my brother-in-law.  He has a degree in music, plays saxophone professionally, and has been teaching music in public schools for over twenty years.  Part of the lesson was to think about “learning performance skills“.  Here is a modified version of his lesson (with supplemental info from Wikipedia)…
The four stages of learning skills are:
Unconscious incompetence  (You don’t know that you don’t know and you don’t know what you don’t know.)
The individual does not understand or know how to do something and does not necessarily recognize the deficit.  They may deny the usefulness of the skill.  The individual must recognize their own incompetence, and the value of the new skill, before moving on to the next stage.  The length of time an individual spends in this stage depends on the strength of the stimulus to learn.
Conscious incompetence  (You know that you don’t know something and recognize you don’t know it.)
Though the individual does not understand or know how to do something, they recognize the deficit, as well as the value of a new skill in addressing the deficit.  The making of mistakes can be integral to the learning process at this stage.
Conscious competence  (You know what you know, but you have to concentrate on it to do it well.)
The individual understands or knows how to do something.  However, demonstrating the skill or knowledge requires concentration.  It may be broken down into steps, and there is heavy conscious involvement in executing the new skill.
Unconscious competence  (You don’t have to think about what you know how to do in order to do it.)
The individual has had so much practice with a skill that it has become “second nature” and can be performed easily.  As a result, the skill can be performed while executing another task.  The individual may be able to teach it to others, depending upon how and when it was learned.
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On This Day In:
2020 Come Laugh With Me
Make Life Be Life To Me
2019 For Your Consideration…
2018 Brown’s Rules
Day 23: Fasting Visualized
2017 Still Trying To Make It
2016 One Lucky Man
2015 Food Change ==> Health Change
2014 10 Commandments Of Logical Arguments (Fallacies)
2013 Sociology Of The Future
2012 1010
There In The Sunshine
2011 Not Enough Time

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The nuclear family, in its brief heyday, was fundamentally an economic strategy, one that made it easier to control the supply of workers and organize childcare and domestic work so that women were doing as much of it as possible for free.  This arrangement no longer makes economic or emotional sense — and millennials know it.  Almost half of us, after all, grew up with parents who were divorced, or in single-parent households.  But the nuclear family remains the only form of family with cultural legitimacy.
Here’s the lesson I had to learn:  “Traditional” nuclear families today are no more stable or secure, no more or less likely to lead to lasting happiness, than “alternative” households.  In “The Sirens of Titan“, Kurt Vonnegut spends hundreds of pages coming to the conclusion that the purpose — or at least a purpose — “of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.”  The problem with found families is exactly the same as the problem with every other sort of family.  There is no perfect structure, no single set of rules, that can guarantee that people will always be decent to each other, will never have growing up to do, and that nobody will ever get their heart broken ever again.
And that, I suppose, is what family means.
It means you love whoever is around to love.  That doesn’t mean you have to like them all the time.  Love takes work.  Living together takes work.  Sick and tired of waiting around in the antechamber of socially sanctioned adulthood, millennials are setting up home right here.  We are not waiting for our “real lives” to start.  We may never have the security or stability we were raised to desire, but we can still have commitment and community.  For me, this is my real life.  These are the households and relationships where I have grown up, learned how to take care of myself and other people, had my heart and brain and favorite mugs broken.  These are our real lives, brief and beautiful, stupid and unlikely, and we would live them far better if we were given permission — beyond the wish fulfillment of fiction — to believe in them.
    —    Laurie Penny
From her article: “Live Wrong And Prosper: It’s The Future Of Families
Appearing in:  Wired Magazine, dtd: July / Aug 2020
Online at:  https://www.wired.com/story/live-wrong-prosper-covid-19-future-of-families/
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On This Day In:
2020 A Message To Optional Trump Supporters (Basically Everyone)
2019 Bigger Jaws
On The Other
2018 Hoping For A Blue Wave In November
2017 Garden Dreaming
2016 Well, Maybe Not “No” Talent
2015 An Appetite For Life
A Trip To The Library
Great Expectations
2014 Pass The Soul
2013 Zapping Music And Art
2012 Not Quite Fantastic
That Kid Is Back
2011 Wolves At The Door
2010 I’m Feeling Patriotic… (Well, more than usual, anyway.)
Beating the Heat…

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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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