Friday, June 25, 2010

Barefoot Contessa

I watch Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network Channel because I really love the show and I like her. She's fabulous and a wonderful cook. I wish I could be friends with her. She's nice and kind. Her husband is really handsome. It's cute how she dotes on him with all his favorite dishes and he loves everything she does.

She made the most fabulous chocolate cake that I want to make. It must be full of calories with the 3 sticks of butter, cream cheese, buttermilk. It looks yummy.

Cooking is a gift to share with others. To sit around a table and share a great meal is a celebration. Dr. Andrew Weil said in one of his books that if you eat an unhealthy meal at a table full of friends and family, the food doesn't have all the harmful consequences as if you are alone, stressed, and lonely. I bet there is something to that.

All My Children

I'm a new fan of All My Children, a day time soap opera. I love Erika played by Susan Lucci. She's a true fighter and inspirational heroine. On Monday she had quite a speech in her hospital bed after surviving a plane crash and time in the wilderness.

She said, "Surviving those mountains, it's made me stronger than I ever was. I have never been so sure of who I am and what I want than I am right now. If I get hurt so be it. If I have to fight the Greenleys of the world, bring them on. One thing I know is that I will not hide and I will definately not surrender. I have survived too much, way too much, to run off and hide because I'm afraid I am going to get hurt again. I will live the life I want with a man who wants the same things I want. I will take the pleasure with the pain and the good with the bad and I will never give up. That's for sure. I will never ever quit. I will have the life I want because I am committed to living every moment to the fullest."

Great writing! It would be fun to split off into clones and go out to be everything I can be. One of me would look for a boss to work for like Erika. I would want to work a 80 hour week and make piles of money, live in a big house, and wear nice clothes.

Soap operas are a life saver for people who are alone. They give you a dose of friends without all the complications. You can see all the problems play out in the television show without having to get into the muck. Easier..........

Wild Birds

We feed wild birds at our house and I also try and grow plants that will be food for them. We hang up two hummingbird feeders. We put up two black thistle feeders for the American Goldfinch. We have four sunflower seed feeders for a mix of other birds. We put out a couple of suet cakes a day. We also put out dried corn cobs in a feeder. So we get a lot of birds. We have most of the feeders under the eaves of our house to bring them up close to the window so we can see them. It's so much fun to watch them. I love it and so does my husband.

Right now there are six American Goldfinch on the black thistle feeder next to the window as I am typing. My favorite bird that comes is the Evening Grosbeak. They are so beautiful. My husband thought they were parrots that escaped when he first saw them come to our feeders.

I've heard how the black birds are predators and drive away the other birds. Phooey! If you put out enough food for everyone, there isn't any fighting. I have ravens who come and patrol the yard like sentinels. Ravens are very intelligent and have been known to talk and warn people of danger. I have to admit that I'm not that warm and fuzzy about the starlings.

I love the Stellers Jays. We have a large group of ring-tailed pigeons that come. Yesterday I counted 15 on one feeder. They even stood on the backs of each other to get the sunflower seeds. We had to put a large board under neath one of the feeders so it could be a platform for the bigger birds since they had a hard time getting at the seed. Before the large birds would have to flap their wings while trying to get a sunflower seed. All the wild birds are welcome in my yard. I love them all.


I have two indoor cats. They are exclusively indoor cats and I've had them for a long time. We got them at the Humane Society in Salem approximately 14 years ago.

First came Angel who was needed since I found a mouse. She had been returned to the Humane Society twice before and we were told that if we took her back, it would be the end of her. She wouldn't let me hold her any time I wanted and I wanted a cat that I could hold any time I wanted. I had a dream and dreamed of an orange and white cat. I sent my husband out to look for an orange and white cat and he came home with Thomas. Thomas is perfect. He would let me hold him all day, everyday, if I wanted. He follows me around the house. He loves crunchy cat treats. He mopes around the house if I am gone and gets angry if I am gone for a couple of days. He turns his back on me, refuses to purr, and doesn't lighten up until I've been home for several hours. I found a cure for this pouty behavior. The last two or three times I have left him alone, I have left phone messages that he can hear in the house telling him that I will be home and that I know he has all the food and water he needs and that I love him. It works. He feels connected and is excited to see me when I come home. It helps him not feel so insecure. When he was a kitten, he was left to starve in an abandoned building so I think this is why.

My cats are indoor cats and never go outside. This way they don't eat the wild birds, catch fleas, or get run over. When we went to the Humane Society, they had us sign a paper that said that we would keep them indoors and we agreed. They said that the life of an indoor cat was 12 years or more and the life of an outdoor cat was 3 years. Well, it's true. My cats are 14 years old and counting. They run around the house, love cat treats, are healthy and are fun.

Cats are more independent and maintenance free than dogs. I've been wanting another Basset Hound, a senior Basset Hound but then I remember what it is like to be up in the middle of the night because they have to go outside. Cats are easier. Although I admit that I would be mighty tempted if I saw the saggy, moanful look of a Basset Hound who needed a home. Basset Hounds aren't yappy or drag you along when you go for a walk. They are mellow and easy going. I've always loved Bassets. Maybe someday.........


My husband asked a doctor recently, who is an expert in this area, a question for me during a visit. I wanted to know what is the secret to having a friend and getting along. This doctor said, "You have to agree with everyone and what everyone says, if you want to have friends and belong in a group."

I guess this is my problem. I don't want to give up my own opinions or identity. I can't be invisible. I can't give up who I am for the sake of blending in and belonging to a group. It is much more important to me to find the truth and to learn than to belong. I have too many questions. I am much more concerned with knowing I am right at the moment and am honest than in always agreeing. I need to be able to express concern, if I have it. People don't need to agree with me. That's not what I want because then it would be boring. How can you learn from people, if everyone agrees?

So I have no idea where I belong. I guess I belong right where I am--staying at home reading stacks of books.

I have wanted to find supportive people of my goals and dreams, and from whom I can learn. I can't afford to travel far. I can't afford memberships. I'm not sure where I belong. And if it is the truth that you truly have to agree with everyone, then I don't see how it can work.

I work hard to be nice and be supportive of others. I enjoy encouraging people but I'm not willing to say yes when I feel no or say that the sky is green when I can see that it is purple. I don't believe that a true friend would ask this of me. I guess I am dreaming and what I have wanted is nonexistent.

I don't understand why everyone needs to agree in order to work together. The joy of being around others is the learning about the differences and other points of view. Why does everyone have to agree? I guess I just don't get it.

A book is a much better solution to learn from and find support or entertainment.

A few years ago I thought I had found a friend with similiar interests who had a husband who I thought would get along with mine. It seemed to work until she had my whole life planned out into the future. I don't have time to sit on the phone for three hours and then do it again the next day.

I guess I don't want to get into the mess of relationships either because having a friend means that you take on their mess too. I have enough to deal with.

Publishers Weekly

I was shocked that the United States doesn’t corner the book publishing market in the world!

The June 21, 2010 issue of Publishers Weekly lists the top publishers of the world. How many times is the United States listed in the top 50? Not 50! Not 45! Not 40! Not 35! Not even a whopping 25! Only 10……….
#2 Reed Elsevier--UK/NL/US
#8 McGraw-Hill Education
#11 Cengage Learning --Canada/US
#12 Scholastic Corp.
#13 Wiley
#14 Houghton Miffllin Harcourt-- US/Cayman Islands
#19 Harper Collins
#27 Simon & Schuster
#28 Readers Digest
#46 Perseus
Who is in the Number One spot? Pearson in the UK.
Germany is also on the list 10 times!

Red Bull

I received a sample of Red Bull in the mail.

I have a story about Red Bull. When I was waiting in line to audition for Biggest Loser in Portland, a truck drove up with Red Bull advertising on it and handed out free samples of Red Bull. I went over to take one. I was grateful. I stuck it in my purse to save it. I’ve never had one before. I waited in line for 11 hours with all the others who all shared hope in their hearts to be on Biggest Loser. It was getting so hot and stuffy when we finally got inside. The line was wrapped around inside the building as it was on the outside. I was out of money. I couldn’t buy water. I couldn’t afford the pizza, they were selling. At the 10 ½ hour point, I was almost done for. I had run out of steam. I thought I was going to faint or pass out. Then I remembered the Red Bull in my purse. I took it out. I couldn’t even open it myself. I had to ask for help. I drank it and it was really good. I had no idea what it would taste like. Then I waited and the magic happened. I started to feel better. I got my second wind and a few more hours of energy. At the 11 hour mark in line when I was about to audition for Biggest Loser, I was ready and rejuvenated.

James Patterson

I love James Patterson. He’s my favorite. Someday, if my ship ever comes in, I’m going to have a huge library with floor to ceiling book cases. In one of the book cases will be signed first editions of all of James Patterson’s books.

Buy all his books at your nearest bookstore. If you haven't discovered him yet, you'll want to read everything he's ever written.

Right now I’m reading JUDGE AND JURY. Again he came to rescue.

On page 98 is the paragraph. It’s about a judge who is being harassed by the mob.
“This was in my bed last night. In my bed, Mr. Cavello! Under my covers. The evening edition broke around seven. My house was completely locked up and alarmed. No one has been inside since four that afternoon. You have an educated guess as to how this got there, Mr. Cavello?”

This is what has been happening to me. It started in Gates where we lost everything and continued for the last ten years in Alsea. A crook or someone official abusing their power position?

When I got to page 98, I didn't feel alone. I felt connected. I know what it feels like to have someone go through your things and not be able to protect yourself. I know what it feels like to feel so powerless. My solution until I know this is over is to stay home.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Oil Spill and BP

When corporations cause harm, they need to pay. Consequences must follow.

BP has destroyed the ecosystem of the Gulf. There's no end in sight. Businesses and careers have been damaged and destroyed. Families have lost their income. Fish, birds, and wildlife have died and are being harmed. Tourism in the area is damaged at millions of dollars a day. The clean up is hazardous to those who do the work.

When businesses cause harm in the course of doing business, they must be responsible. They must be held accountable. There has to be consequences.

Large corporations are acting like bullies and spoiled little kids who want their own way and do not want consequences. Yes, they must pay for the damage. Yes, we need to make sure that businesses can not do this again. A fine for misbehavior isn't good enough. Assets should be frozen until the damage is paid.

I applaud President Obama for expecting and callling for consequences. This can't keep happening in this country.

We are a global community. When one section of the world is damaged, it directly effects other areas of the world. We need to work together to make sure that someone who is out for greed and money isn't allowed to destroy without consequences.

If there were consequences in place, the oil industry would have invested in money to prevent accidents like this. Their major investment is in PR. PR isn't going to get you out of this one, BIG OIL.

Alsea Valley Voice

I was the editor of the print edition of the Alsea Valley Voice from July, 2009 through April, 2010. It was fun, at least in the beginning. I loved writing articles, interviewing people, encouraging new writers, and working to showcase talent in the area. I loved volunteering in this way.

What made it hard at the end was when people in the area and leaders would promise articles that they did not deliver. I was promised 8 items for the April issue that I didn't receive. I had hoped for 12. I was told that I expected too much. What made it even more frustrating was that when I started to write more, I was criticized by some for making it all about me. I guess interviewing people and writing articles with my by-line was too much of Wendy for some. Oh, well.......... I guess they want an invisible editor and invisible writers that showcase the area.

I figured that someone more connected to the community would do a much better job of getting more articles so I quit. Within 5 days time after my e-mail resignation, the board met, found a new editor, and someone came to my door to get everything. They jumped at the opportunity so I fade into the background again. Will I surface again to volunteer in Alsea. I doubt it. Every attempt seems to end the same way. I'm not wanted here and I'm not valued. Simple as that.

Staying Home

I've been staying home for the last couple of months. I've only left my property twice. Why? Almost every time when my husband and I have left, we come back to find something missing or changed. Until someone gives me answers, help or I find a solution, I'm not going anywhere.

This has been happening ever since we moved here 10 years ago. Why? It's harrassment or a really good crook or someone abusing their official power position who picks things up here and there when they enter our house. No one has our house keys. No one is given permission when we leave to watch the place. We have a security system. So how is this happening? Bush created Homeland Security and no one has addressed potential abuses of the right to enter someone's home without a search warrant.

I've spoken out against leaders. Is this why? Roadblocks show up with every attempt to succeed. Some have told me that I must have really made someone mad. I don't blindly follow. I think. I question. I read. I investigate. I speak out. I value the truth and the law. I wish I had gone to law school. No one bothers attorneys. An attorney is armed with the law.

My husband called Benton County Sheriff Department and was told without proof, there is nothing they can do. I've called too. Not even a report was filed.

So do I give up on dreams? Do I stay home to protect what little I have? One person that I discussed it with agrees that this is a great way to make someone feel insecure. The last thing that was taken was a large plastic bin of fabric I bought on sale that I was saving to make quilts for my grandchildren. The retail price of the fabric has to be close to $800. I think this is why things like this are taken because who would believe someone that fabric was stolen.

Should I quit writing too? What is the point of trying and putting in effort to find roadblocks in every direction? I can't afford to do many things so money limits what I can attempt.

I'm great at finding the good within the limits of what is possible. I'm great at finding something to do within the financial limits or within the selections available. I am never bored. I change directions. I enjoy knitting, quilting, watching TV and movies, sewing, gardening. There are so many books I've wanted to read. But what is the point of creating when you are stopped? What is the point of writing when you are not allowed to flourish? Do I give it up?

It's hard when you don't have friends or a support system. It's hard to be isolated without a network of people to consult who want you to succeed and who want you to win.

Sometimes I feel like I live in the wrong state or country. A new book being published in August is an important one that is reviewed in the June 14th edition of PUBLISHERS WEEKLY. WERE YOU BORN ON THE WRONG CONTINENT?: HOW THE EUROPEAN MODEL CAN HELP YOU GET A LIFE by Thomas Geohegan discusses the difference between the lifestyle in Europe as compared to the United States. Geohegan argues that "the middle class is the real beneficiary of European social democracy--its members reap free education, free child care, free nursing home care, guaranteed vacation time, and generous unemployment benefits--while their white-collar American counterparts struggle to pay for the same." It makes me want to live in Sweden or Germany. Order it from or go to your nearest bookstore to order a copy. Think. Don't just blindly believe what those around you tell you to believe. Read. Question.

Rise of the New Right

The MSNBC special on Hardball, "Rise of the New Right" was scary. Leaders of the Conservative Right and Tea Party Members are calling for arms, inciting violent behavior, and talking about "taking out" those who do not agree with them. They are talking about revolution and violence. is this different from definitions of terrorism?

The more I listen to leaders on the right, the more I shake my head and wonder about their ability. Angle of Nevada has PR people cleaning up her website. She's the one who suggests chickens to pay for health care.

Many on the right go to church. What does this say about churches? Any church which spouts hatred, violence, and the desire to harm others isn't even in the category of spirituality or religion in my opinion.

Hot in Cleveland

The new situation comedy on TVLD is a hit. This pilot comedy starring Valerie Bertinelli has all the ingredients for success. Betty White is fabulous! I love the characters. It's a Boomer Sex in the City.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Oil Spill

I wonder when Congress is going to put laws in place that will prevent future oil spills from happening. I wonder when Congress is going to quit wasting time, quit taking money from special interest groups and work hard for the United States of America and the good of all. It isn't okay for a large corporation to pollute and destroy. Safeguards and preventions must be put into place so this can't happen.

We have President Bush to thank for the carte blanche policies that has allowed Big Oil to do what they want.

The reason why I am a Democrat is because I don't believe that local governments can govern without the check and balance system of the federal government. Someone must be the watch dog to make sure corruption is rooted out.

How much of each day in Congress is spent efficiently to bring forth solutions and answers? How much time is wasted? How much of the process in Congress prevents solutions, action, and resolution?

The damage caused by this oil spill in the Gulf impacts tourism, wildlife, the fishing industry, all cities along the coast and many miles inland, and will take years to recover. The assets of all who are responsible should be frozen and should pay for this damage.

So You Think You Can Dance

The first show of auditions in NYC and Miami were glorious with so much talent. I love Adam Shankman and Mia Michels. They cry at the extraordinary and the genius. I was crying with them. I love to see talent and the exceptional. I love to see talented young people who work hard, endure, practice, and who persist. I also love Cat Deeley. I love to see what she is going to wear each week plus she is so nice. Everyone's great on the show for they delight in the best and the finest in dancing. They encourage and direct it and give it opportunity to shine and bloom.

I'm excited to see what happens and all that follows. This is one of the best shows on television. It has encouraged dance, competition, and young people all across the country taking dance classes who dance their hearts out.