Friday, January 30, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
"Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been
spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet,
every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At
these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision
of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the
ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents."
~President Barak Obama - Inaugural Address
Monday, January 19, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
As we get closer to this year's inauguration of President Elect Obama, I can't help but reflect on a few things.
It just so happens that, currently, I am reading Living History, the autobiography of Hillary Rodham Clinton. I've never before read an autobiography of a former First Lady, or President, and have found it much more enlightening than I expected. Sure, the political aspect is somewhat interesting but it's the personal notes that have really caught my attention. I had never before thought about the excitment that a family experiences upon moving to the White House for the first time. I suppose I had always assumed that seasoned politicians were somewhat immune to that kind of thing. Clinton describes their complete awe at moving to such a historic home and being such an important part of history. So now, as I watch the Obama family begin to take the same journey, I'm filled with excitment (especially for the two young girls) almost as though I could feel theirs myself (which I'm sure I can't).
Adding to my new perspective is a special about the White House that I happened to catch on C-Span last night (The White House: Inside America's Most Famous House). It wasn't anything fancy. It included some interviews with historians, preservation committee members, the First Lady and President but it also showed video and photos of more than just the public rooms of the house. It was an enlightening history of how the house became a home and all the work that former first families put into making it the grand estate it is now. I highly recommend you try and catch it if you can.
Of course, there is the obvious reflection: this is one of the most historic inaugurations we have ever witnessed. Whether or not one likes Obama and his ideas I could only hope that everyone realizes the significance of his presidency. As the first African-American to ever be elected president he is fufullling the dreams of the ancestors of so many. Could the historic train ride on Lincoln's route and using Lincoln's bible for his inauguration have ever held so much meaning? I doubt it. At the end of the C-Span special, one of the historians commented (and I quote loosely) that Obama is "not only moving into a house built for him but he is moving into a house built by his ancestors." (I wish I could remember the exact quote because I'm sure I haven't effectively communicated the feeling it evoked when I heard it.)
This year, without a doubt, I will be watching the inauguration and I'm very excited about it.
*Photo titled "Mr. Lincoln, we have a new president..." by Tony the Misfit (on Flickr)
Saturday, January 17, 2009
*This post and its links are in no way intended to give medical advice or endorse any medical/pharmaceutical product. Talk to your doctor about what is best for you.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Announced by all the trumpets of the sky,
Arrives the snow, and, driving o'er the fields,
Seems nowhere to alight: the whited air
Hides hills and woods, the river, and the heaven,
And veils the farmhouse at the garden's end.
The sled and traveler stopped, the courier's feet
Delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit
Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed
In a tumultuous privacy of storm.
Come see the north wind's masonry.
Out of an unseen quarry evermore
Furnished with tile, the fierce artificer
Curves his white bastions with projected roof
Round every windward stake, or tree, or door.
Speeding, the myriad-handed, his wild work
So fanciful, so savage, nought cares he
For number or proportion. Mockingly,
On coop or kennel he hangs Parian wreaths;
A swan-like form invests the hidden thorn;
Fills up the farmer's lane from wall to wall,
Maugre the farmer's sighs; and, at the gate,
A tapering turret overtops the work.
And when his hours are numbered, and the world
Is all his own, retiring, as he were not,
Leaves, when the sun appears, astonished Art
To mimic in slow structures, stone by stone,
Built in an age, the mad wind's night-work,
The frolic architecture of the snow.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Mom's Turkey Meatloaf
Recipe Credit: Copyright 2005 by Ellie Krieger
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup skim milk
1 medium onion, peeled
2 lbs. ground turkey breast
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 eggs, beaten
2 tsps. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
Preheat over to 350 degrees F.
In a small bowl, stir together the oats and milk. Thinly slice 1/4 of the onion and set aside. Finely chop the remaining onion. IN a large bowl combine the turkey, oat mixture, chopped onion, bell pepper, eggs, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, salt and a few grinds of pepper. Mix just until well combined.
Transfer the mixture to a 9x13 inch baking dish and shape into a loaf about 5 inches wide and 2 1/2 inches high. Pour the tomato sauce over the meatloaf and sprinkle with the sliced onions. Bake for about 1 hour or until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees F.
Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.
Click here to view this recipe on the Food Network site which also includes a photo and nutrition information.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Here's how I think it might apply to me: I don't make resolutions but I think it's time to say goodbye to "stuff." I need to learn that holding on to material things, because I attribute some sort of memory to them, is not going to make me happy (nor will getting rid of the object mean I must get rid of the memory). I need to let go and live in the present going forward. I seem to have a way of staying stuck in the past. I need to make my own happiniess and share it with those around me. I need to just live life and stop waiting for life to happen. I know there are other ways I can apply it but I need to go live life (away from the computer).
Here's the poem (my copy says "Author Unknown" but my internet research shows that it was likely written by Veronica Shoffstall in 1971):