Malefactor! Scam – e-mail Threats and A Free Trip to Florida?

yelling on phone-photo-1587014

Who is this? Stop calling me, Bozo, or I’ll…             *Just hang up.

Scam Phone Calls

*My comments in red.

Being part of an out-of-state phone/family plan, I have an out-of-state area code. I only know two family members from that state.

Why would the rest of the state be calling? So it seemed. Mostly from  someone with a number very similar to mine? And so many. I get it, I’m supposed to be curios…and answer.

Years ago, when I first got the phone I answered a few calls. Who could it be? Behold! Each one, a FREE trip to Florida! For me! A FREE GIFT? Duh….I was actually on a walk with Hubby…in Florida.


Remember when?




Photo by Mathyas Kurmann on Unsplash

Prior to the Internet, offers arrived via postcard, delivered in our mailbox. “You have won A Trip to Florida. A FREE GIFT! Call this 800 number to claim your FREE GIFT before it is too late.”


Uh…isn’t a gift…free?

Son noticed this same postcard, in our mailbox, when he was thirteen. “Mom! Look! You won a trip to Florida. Call them. We can go to Disney.”

“Son, it’s a scam. They want money. There is no free trip.” 

“But it’s written right here: “A Free Gift. Call us to sign up for your Free Trip. They’re not asking for money. All you have to do is call.”

Okay. This was to be a teachable moment.

“I’ll call. You listen on the intercom.” His eyes widened, sparkling with excitement. I dialed. A lady’s super friendly voice answered.

“I have a postcard. It says I won a Free Trip to Florida.”

“Oh yes! What is your name?” she asked.

“You should know my name, you sent me the postcard. Or do you have thousands of people ‘winning’ the same prize?”

“We have to be sure it’s you. Can you verify please?”

“I’m Jane Jones.”
*This is the I-net – I’ll not give a name or address 😉 in a blog.

“What is your address please.”

“You already have it, remember? You sent the card to the winner.”

“We have to be sure it’s you. Can you verify please?”

“1234 Main Street, City, State, Zip”

“Thank you. Do you have a credit card?”


“Please read the number on the card with the expiration date.”

“This is a Free Gift. A free trip to Florida. Why do you need my credit card? When I deliver ‘free’ gifts, celebrating someone’s birthday, I don’t ask for a credit card number.”

“Over the phone, we have to be sure it’s you. Can you verify with the card please? This will guarantee you get your free trip.”

“I don’t know you. You are a stranger. Why should I give you my credit card number?”

“Because you called us for your trip. We need a credit card to guarantee the trip and to verify who you are.”

CK2 Sassy GIF - CK2 Sassy Angry GIFs

“Sorry, you have me confused with someone else. I have a Free Gift. A Free Trip to Florida. So I don’t see the need for my credit card if it’s free. And you sent the card. I called because I received the card. Ergo, I am verifying who I am by calling you, answering your card’s request, sent to me, the winner, to call.”

“Well, we have to be sure it’s you. Can you please verify with the credit card?”

The friendly voice grew slightly impatient, yet still civil. Was her objective a formulaic response disguised as customer relations expertise—to engender trust, to seduce the unaware, to rob?

“No. I don’t think I will do that. My son pointed out the post card doesn’t mention the need of a credit card. He was convinced we had been blessed—that you were sending a FREE Gift from some lottery in which I had participated. Which I did not. And from the look on his face, I think he has learned Free Gifts received in the mail are not ‘free’. Good bye.”

Son’s face no longer glowed, his brow furrowed. “She wanted you to pay for the trip?” 

“No, Son. She wanted my credit card to buy what she wanted. There was no trip to Florida. It was a hoax.”

“That stinks.” His upper lip went up a little, Elvis Presley style. He was disappointed.

“Some day we’ll go to Florida.” And we did.


*Fast forward to 2018 + 2019 e-mail threats.

*My comments in red.

*I receive lots of mail from scammers who assume I am a man.

At the end of last year, I received three scam e-mails that were of the same vein.  
Each gave me the low-down at how I was HACKED! I had better listen up, and was given the details.
Extortion scamsEach similarly worded. 

*Grammar, syntax and typos indicated they were from another country, perhaps?

The three e-mail scams: 

After skimming the first sentence I immediately sent the first two extortion e-mails to spamI’ve rejected tons of e-mails as spam and junk for years. I’ve reported a few to e-mail scam detective services. Do they really work? The National Do-Not-Call Registry service the government provides to Americans doesn’t work.

Where are these people? The hours spent creating mahem could, instead, be used to save the planet—and themselves. Why hide under the guise of scammer wearing a hoodie, in a dark corner, suffering from low self-esteem.

Smile, scammer. You too can do good. And be proud! Stand up! Take off that hoodie, cut it up, make a hoody quilt, donate it to the poor! Start a fad and make an honest living in broad daylight.

Okay, okay. About that third e-mail, which I also sent to spam…  
Here it is: 

Kinnie Linsley <>
* Is this the real Kinnie? or was the name culled from someone’s contacts folder?
To: “” <> 
*They found my e-mail somewhere, someone’s contact folder?

jo mylinkedin  o‌n‌e o‌f yo‌ur pa‌sswo‌rds.
*Incomplete sentence.
*AND I had cancelled mylinkedin account a month prior because I never used it.
L‌ets g‌et ri‌ght to‌ purpo‌s‌e. No‌ p‌erso‌n ha‌s co‌mpensat‌ed m‌e to‌ ch‌eck abo‌ut yo‌u. Yo‌u do‌ not kno‌w me a‌nd yo‌u’r‌e pro‌bably thi‌nki‌ng why yo‌u’r‌e g‌etti‌ng thi‌s ma‌i‌l? 

i‌n fa‌ct, i‌ pla‌c‌ed a‌ so‌ftwa‌r‌e on th‌e adult str‌eami‌ng (s‌ex si‌t‌es) w‌ebsit‌e a‌nd guess wha‌t, yo‌u vi‌si‌ted this websi‌te to ‌experi‌‌enc‌e fun (yo‌u kno‌w wha‌t i‌ m‌ean). Wh‌en yo‌u w‌er‌e vi‌‌ewi‌ng vi‌d‌eo‌ cli‌ps, yo‌ur i‌ntern‌et bro‌ws‌er sta‌rted op‌era‌ting a‌s a RDP ha‌vi‌ng a‌ k‌ey lo‌gg‌er which ga‌v‌e me a‌ccess to‌ your di‌spla‌y a‌s w‌ell a‌s web ca‌m. i‌mm‌edia‌t‌ely a‌ft‌er that, my softwa‌re o‌bta‌i‌n‌ed a‌ll your co‌nta‌cts fro‌m yo‌ur Messeng‌er, FB, a‌s w‌ell as e-mai‌l . N‌ext i cr‌ea‌ted a‌ do‌ubl‌e vi‌d‌eo‌. 1st pa‌rt displa‌ys the vi‌d‌eo‌ yo‌u were vi‌ewi‌ng (yo‌u’v‌e go‌t a‌ ni‌c‌e ta‌st‌e ; )), and second part sho‌ws th‌e vi‌‌ew o‌f yo‌ur w‌ebca‌m, & i‌ts yo‌u.
*Well, that is strange, since I have two layers of tape covering my web-cam. Always have.

Yo‌u a‌ctually ha‌v‌e two di‌fferent o‌ptio‌ns. L‌ets ta‌k‌e a‌ loo‌k a‌t these typ‌es o‌f o‌ptions i‌n d‌eta‌i‌ls: 

1st cho‌i‌c‌e i‌s to‌ i‌gno‌r‌e thi‌s e-ma‌i‌l. i‌n this cas‌e, i‌ mo‌st c‌ertai‌nly wi‌ll s‌end o‌ut yo‌ur very own vi‌d‌eo r‌eco‌rdi‌ng to‌ ‌ea‌ch on‌e o‌f yo‌ur co‌nta‌cts and just co‌nsid‌er co‌nc‌erni‌ng th‌e sham‌e yo‌u f‌e‌el. No‌t to‌ forget sho‌uld yo‌u b‌e in a‌ lo‌vi‌ng rela‌tio‌nship, pr‌eci‌s‌ely ho‌w it is go‌i‌ng to‌ a‌ff‌ect? 

S‌eco‌nd cho‌i‌c‌e i‌s to‌ pa‌y m‌e 3000 USD. W‌e a‌r‌e go‌i‌ng to‌ describ‌e it a‌s a‌ dona‌ti‌o‌n. Then, i‌ mo‌st certa‌i‌nly wi‌ll insta‌ntan‌eo‌usly di‌scard yo‌ur vi‌d‌eo‌ recording. Yo‌u co‌uld k‌e‌ep o‌n go‌ing da‌i‌ly li‌f‌e li‌k‌e thi‌s n‌ev‌er too‌k pla‌ce a‌nd yo‌u sur‌ely wi‌ll n‌ev‌er h‌ea‌r ba‌ck a‌gai‌n fro‌m me. 

You’ll ma‌k‌e th‌e pa‌ym‌ent thro‌ugh Bi‌tco‌in (i‌f you do‌ not kno‌w thi‌s, s‌ea‌rch ‘ho‌w to‌ buy bi‌t‌co‌i‌n’ i‌n Go‌o‌gl‌e s‌ea‌rch engi‌n‌e). 

B‌T‌C‌ a‌ddr‌ess to‌ send to‌: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX[ca‌se-s‌ensiti‌v‌e so‌ co‌py and pa‌st‌e i‌t] *This was a complicated collection of digits and characters. I “XXX” the address to protect the reader.
i‌f you ma‌y b‌e ma‌ki‌ng pla‌ns for going to‌ th‌e law ‌enfo‌rc‌ement, sur‌ely, thi‌s ma‌il canno‌t b‌e trac‌ed back to‌ me. I‌ ha‌v‌e ta‌k‌en ca‌r‌e of my moves. i‌ a‌m not lo‌oki‌ng to‌ dema‌nd a‌ whol‌e lo‌t, i wo‌uld li‌ke to‌ b‌e rewa‌rded. Yo‌u no‌w ha‌v‌e t‌w‌o da‌ys i‌n o‌rd‌er to‌ pay. i ha‌v‌e a‌ special pi‌xel wi‌thin thi‌s m‌essa‌g‌e, and ri‌ght no‌w i kno‌w that yo‌u ha‌v‌e rea‌d through thi‌s ‌emai‌l. if i‌ do‌ no‌t g‌et th‌e B‌itC‌o‌ins, i‌ will send o‌ut yo‌ur vi‌deo‌ r‌ecordi‌ng to‌ a‌ll of yo‌ur co‌ntacts i‌ncludi‌ng fa‌mi‌ly memb‌ers, coll‌eagu‌es, and ma‌ny o‌thers. Ha‌vi‌ng sai‌d tha‌t, i‌f i‌ r‌ecei‌v‌e th‌e pa‌ym‌ent, i‌ wi‌ll destroy th‌e vi‌deo‌ i‌mm‌edia‌t‌ely. This is th‌e no‌n-nego‌ti‌able offer, and so do‌ no‌t wa‌ste my p‌ersonal ti‌me and yo‌urs by replyi‌ng to‌ thi‌s ‌e ma‌i‌l. i‌f you rea‌lly want pro‌of, r‌eply Y‌es! a‌nd i‌ will c‌erta‌inly s‌end out your vid‌eo‌ to‌ your 12 fri‌ends.


*Wouldn’t you know. I found this at Komando’s blog on the Internet! 
Click here:   Just another extortion scam…

This is a new year, and I get reminders to pay up, or else!

They come from a different address.
Clever “subject” in the e-mail.
I hover mouse over the “from” field. If I don’t know who it is, it is sent to spam.

I do NOT open e-mail from an unknown source.

*An e-mail I did not request is always suspicious. I am leery of strange e-mail addresses.  And send them to spam.

*If I am uncertain, I copy text and paste to Google. Most times they come up as scam.

A week ago, I received an e-mail from a male whose name I did not know. 
Subject: “I need to speak with you.”
*That subject may sound innocent enough, however, I felt it was a ruse to get me to connect, to infect my PC. I sent it to Spam.

Then I traveled down my list of e-mails and there he was again…same name but as a company instead of a person. 
*Delete to Spam.

Felicia is a Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler 20110311

Pine Warbler 20110311 (Photo credit: Kenneth Cole Schneider)

The weather is gloomy, rain comes in showers, thunder now barely audible as it travels West. Thud, thud. What was that? I swung around and stepped to the large, glass, double-door in my office. It has to be a bird!

On the ground, a tiny figure with colorful feathers lies motionless. The cat! Where’s Charlie?  Inside. That’s good. Main Coons are great hunters. Lucky for my feathered friend it was raining. Coons—all cats—prefer dry homes to wet forests.

One wing is spread open as it covers most of the bird. As I pick it up, its heart beats rapidly and delicately against my palm.

Very dazed.

I coo, “Are you okay?” No answer—what did I expect? Around me a dozen or more ‘yellow’ birds hover and flit from branch to branch. “Your friend flew into my window. I’m so sorry.”

It silently opens and closes its beak. Its eyes do the same. It must have a painful head. I cover the poor bird with both hands as a precaution for panic or another fall. What can I do? The other birds are calling to their friend. I’ll help your friend! I’ll ice her little head to stop any swelling. Maybe that will help. Stay, don’t go away, we’ll be back. I step inside with the bird as Charlie steps outdoors. The bird doesn’t move. But she (I feel it is a she) is still alive. She opens her beak. Gasping?


My free hand rummages through the freezer, I settle for a small bag of ground coffee. It’s very cold, perfect as an ice pack for the bird’s head. After about a minute, I remove the pack and make my way back to the door. Oh darn! The others have gone. Did they give up on her? The bird opened its eyes wide and seemed to be recovering. I try my hand at bird calls. “Tweet. Tweet?” I can hear them in the distance. Are they watching? I open my hand a little more. The bird becomes excited and panics. I close my hand a bit and whisper, “It’s okay.” As I pat her feathers and head, she relaxes. I slowly open my palm again, she adjusts her foot, perhaps to be comfortable. Such tiny feet! Does she feel safe inside my hand, which provides a familiar cover from the elements?


After several minutes, the bird sits and is more alert. She watches my other hand as it moves. A mosquito finds my arm, she cocks her head to watch it bite. With a breath, I blow it away but it returns. I bring the bird’s beak to the mosquito to possibly feed her. Nothing happens. The mosquito is annoyed and leaves.

It is about fifteen minutes since the incident. I must either cage the bird or return it to nature. Perhaps a tree limb, away from Charlie. The cat! He is still outside! It has begun to drizzle again—he’ll come. I call, “Charlie! Kitty come.” Good, old Charlie comes running, unaware—I think—of the bird in my grasp. I step out, shut the door and whisper to my friend. I reach up high with palm open. She sits. “What’s the matter Felicia? Felicia means happy. You are a happy, little bird, able to fly thousands of miles with your friends. Felicia it is! So. Felicia, will you sit in the crook of this limb?” I gently move her tiny feet. I reach up high again to encourage her to climb into the pine tree.

I go now.

Felicia suddenly and smoothly glides down into the brush four feet in front of me. She is hidden by a blackberry bush and small saplings. I reach for my camera. As I stoop and focus, she busily scratches under her wing, flits back and forth on the branch, looks at me, then at the ground. She jumps into the deep of ground cover and away from my lens. No picture—can’t complain. We spent over fifteen minutes sharing a crisis, a moment and a recovery.

I hope Felicia will be okay. Will she find her friends? Can she call out to them? Not sure.

Take care Felicia. Come again on your next migration. Next time, a gentle tap, tap will do.

Charlie naps.



Inside, Charlie naps as I Google ‘yellow breast’ + ‘birds’. There it is! A pine warbler! And it is female! I knew it. That’s my Felicia!

Echinecia with Easel

Echanecia with Easel, painted in my studio.

This is a watercolor study painted in my studio.

Echinacea is Nature’s remedy for a cold or flu. It is also known as the Purple Cone Flower.

I believe most people are familiar with its tea, or extract. Whenever I feel the onset of symptoms for a cold or flu I immediately go to the fridge and take the extract. My husband warily acquiesced to my recommendation to take one dropper-full when he had a nasty cold. Within an hour he felt great.

For more information about the plant, visit The History of Echinacea.

English: Echinacea pallida, Asteraceae, Pale P...

English: Echinacea pallida, Asteraceae, Pale Purple Cone-flower, inflorescence. The plant is used in homeopathy as remedy: Echinacea (Echi.) Deutsch: Echinacea pallida, Asteraceae, Prärie-Igelkopf, Blasser Igelkopf, Blütenstand. Die Pflanze wird in der Homöopathie als Arzneimittel verwendet: Echinacea (Echi.) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Another site that is informative is The History and Traditional Use of the plant. This site will give your further information about herb and drug interaction, contraindications, etc.

Before you take any herbs, do lots of research first. Go to legitimate websites such as .org or .edu, which are there to give information. A .com site will most likely want to sell the product and give a biased recommendation of what is good for you.

If you decide to take any herbs, tell your Primary Care Physician. If you doctor doesn’t know about the plant, share your research and ask him/her to do research based on your medical history. Most doctors will do it. Ask for information in printed format for review. Seek a second opinion—visit a reputable naturopathic physician.

Hope this helps. Send a comment.

The Loss of a Parent

Mother and Child, 1939

Mother and Child, 1939

A child does not understand death even if explained as ‘gone’ or ‘gone to heaven’.

Passed on, gone, deceased. What are those words to a child? Just words. Words he/she has never heard before (perhaps).

My mother died when I was five. It was a tragic accident. A reporter arrived at my grandparent’s home to ask questions. I wanted to tell the story because I was there when ‘it happened’. I offered my story. He was nice and I believed I told him all he needed to know.

I thought she would return. I would see her again and tell her I missed her. After a year I actually forgot what she looked like. All photos of my mother vanished, so I only had a vague memory of a tall, brown-haired woman who had loved me before she left.

At six years, as I sat with my classmates during Sunday services, I diligently examined each woman who passed by my pew. If one was tall and brunette, I waited for her to stop, smile, recognized me and take me home. Some did smile, but each continued on to receive the sacrament.

This search was a secret. I never felt a need to share these thoughts with anyone, not even my sister. I don’t know why.

I don’t remember how long it was before I finally stopped searching. As I got older, I finally accepted the step-mother who took my mother’s place.

My mother is not forgotten. At times I believe she is here with me, but in another form. I talk to her in my thoughts and wonder what she would say about certain things. I look to my aunt—her sister—and project her love and words on to my mother. I think they would be alike in many ways. Until recently, my aunt filled in missing details about my mother. Now my aunt has Alzheimer’s and can not share any more information. So I live with the memories of a five-year old and am happy to have them. My mother was beautiful and talented.

Several years ago, a story brewed in my mind. So I started writing. Because of my busy schedule, it took twelve years to write a manuscript I hope to publish as a Young Adult novel. The story deals with death and absence of a parent. I think I wrote it because as a teacher, I found students who were dealing with the death of a loved one and I empathized with them as they struggled with the anguish and loneliness. After completing the manuscript I spent the last two years editing and having it critiqued. Once published I believe it will help others deal with the loss a parent or someone close.

Gray Catbird mother and child

Gray Catbird mother and child (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have you lost a loved one? As an adolescent or as an adult, do you have thoughts of a parent or other loved one who has ‘gone to heaven’? How do  you deal with it? Share your thoughts with a comment below.

Hubby Burns Toast and Toaster

English: Abstract portrait of Arnold Franz Bra...

Abstract portrait of Arnold Franz Brasz by American Abstract Expressionist and friend, Jay Meuser

While painting my next masterpiece—a watercolor, I became aware of a smell in my studio. Ignoring it, I continued with the orange wash and worried not to overwhelm the surrounding colors and hoped the reflections would be believable.

Within minutes, the smell got stronger. Something was burning. “What is that smell, Hon? Did you burn something?”

“Oh, I burnt the toast. Everything is okay,” Hubby replied. He had decided, several years ago, that an aluminum pie plate or a block of wood placed over the toaster would shorten the time needed for bread to toast. I’ve chastened him every time he made burn marks on my smaller chopping blocks or when he melted the plastic on our new and cheaper toasters. He apologized each time and found a different method to implement his plan.

“Burnt toast?—Okay?—Smells like the kitchen is on fire. I can barely breathe!” I rushed to the kitchen and found something very black. “You left the burnt toast and a burnt block of pine on the counter. The kitchen is filled with smoke and the smoke is in every room of the house.”

Sorry Hon, I ran water over the toast.”

“Why didn’t you just throw it outside. If you burn something, throw it outside immediately! Otherwise, it just stinks up the house.”

This time the block of wood looked and smelled something awful. “The block of wood does not help save electricity, it only helps burn the toast. The block charred all the way through. You’ll burn the house down!”
Frustrated, I picked up the burnt, wet toast and threw it out the door. As it landed in the new snow it crumbled. I placed the block of wood on the doorstep.
Now I had to air out the house! As Hubby sat reading one of his many library books, I ran from room to room opening windows and doors. To hasten the process, I grabbed a couple of newspapers to fan the smoke outside. It was about 20 degrees Fahrenheit outside and the inside temperature was now dropping. I continued fanning as long as I could stand the cold.

Hubby continued reading.

As I shut windows and doors I determined patience would help me deal with the smell, which would eventually dissipate.

Upon returning to my studio, I added another glaze of orange to my painting. The results were splendid. I loved the painting. A masterpiece! Maybe not. Perhaps the next painting…
Two weeks later, the burnt smell finally gone, I noticed a new block of oak sitting beside the toaster.

“Nice piece of wood, dear.” I admired the grain and thought of the many ways I could use this piece of beautifully grained oak. From chopping block to woodcut printing. Later, I watched Hubby proudly place this 3/4 inch, heavy piece of oak over the toaster. This board completely covered the toaster slots. I went to my studio. Later I observed Hubby in the living room eating toast as he read his new book.

The next morning as I made breakfast, I noticed a burnt smell.  “Did you burn toast again?” I asked as I examined the block of wood. It sported two distinctive, black burn marks on the underside and the board was now warped.

I placed bread in the toaster and pressed the lever. Hubby walked in and said, “Better watch your toast. I burned mine. It didn’t pop-up.”

“That’s because you had a board over the toaster.” So I continued preparing my eggs and cocoa. Eventually I realized something was burning. My toast was smoking and I could not release the toast. The knob stuck. The toast would not eject. As I unplugged the toaster, I yelled, “You ruined the toaster with your damned board! Why do you keep doing that?”

Toaster Portrait

Toaster Portrait (Photo credit: Martin Cathrae)Hubby replied from the living room, “Sorry, dear.”

After breakfast, I decided to inspect the toaster. Upon dis-assembly, I found the interior gummed with black, toast soot. Crumbs stuck to the gummy residue. I spent about an hour cleaning the parts and Hubby offered a computer cleaning spray we previously used to clean computers. I sprayed that on what looked like a motherboard. Satisfied with the cleaning, I plugged the skeleton of the toaster into the outlet and pressed the lever down. It was working. Then I pressed the release button and it worked! “Hon, I fixed the toaster!”

English: Toaster "Philips comfort plus&qu...

Image via Wikipedia

A few minutes later I discovered the interior plastic collar that originally framed the slot where the handle traveled up and down now blocked the path formed by the slot. So I cut the hanging plastic from the slot with a hack-saw.

Now to re-assemble the toaster. With so many parts to hold on to, it was impossible to screw the metal sheets together. “Hon, can you come here? Hold this tight. Be careful not to let the sides pop out.”  Hubby used his muscle as he pressed the ends together. I placed enough screws so he could back to reading.

Upon turning the last screw, I proudly flipped the toaster only to find one side wall had popped out. “Hon!”

Again, Hubby helped me press the parts together as I re-assembled and screwed the pieces together a second time.Upon inspecting the sides, I was proud of the work done. Perhaps I could repair toasters and other small appliances. In today’s economy, people could save money and I’d earn a small income to boot. There aren’t any small appliance repair shops around anymore.

Now to replace the knob and test the toaster with its handle in place. Something wasn’t right. Where was the metal arm, which received the handle? Now I realized why it was so difficult to screw the toaster together, we had forced the metal arm in behind the toaster’s wall. This toaster must easily assemble, otherwise how could a factory justify using two to three people just to place 8 screws into the bottom of a toaster?
I dis-assembled the toaster a third time. The metal arm was just a little bent. No problem. This time I re-assemble the toaster without Hubby. Hah! I COULD repair toasters. Maybe a shingle outside the door is imminent.

Smiling as I twisted the last screw into place, I flipped the toaster and happily slipped the knob on the arm. I pressed the knob down. The toaster worked. I pressed the release and it did not return. Upon further inspection of the knob, I found the plastic neck warped. So I went to Hubby to admonish him of his evil deed once again and showed him the now heat-deformed handle.

“Sorry, dear.”

I sanded the bulges out of the neck. Proudly placing the knob on to the arm, I pushed it down, pressed the release button and it worked!Glory, glory. I was going to really put some thought on this new career venture. Perhaps a web-page to advertise my services. How much would shipping a small appliance cost?

Breville Appliances. From left to right: Empor...

Image via Wikipedia

The last piece of the puzzle was the temperature dial. That was going the easy part. Or was it? It didn’t slip into place. Aaargh! The dial slipped in from behind the toaster wall. So, I dis-assembled the toaster a fourth time—all the way to the skeleton and the mother board. After determining how to position the handle and slipping it on, I carefully and easily re-assembled the toaster without Hubby. I did it in fifteen minutes!

Psittacula eupatria English: A pet female Alex...

Image via Wikipedia

The toaster looked great in its usual corner. It was sparkling and seemed happy. Only I knew what parts were now deformed or partly mutilated. But it worked! As I collected the tools and considered my new career plans, I decided that it was not for me. I lost one to three screws each time I re-assembled the toaster and spent five to fifteen minutes just hunting for screws or washers.
I was happy to have my toaster back.

“Hon. I fixed the toaster. Don’t you ever cover that toaster or any other toaster with anything again.”

“Sorry, dear.”

I went to my studio and realized it was now 3:30 PM. Too late to start another painting. The lighting was not right. Maybe tomorrow I’ll create a masterpiece.

Vitamin C — Lemons, Grapefruit

This image shows a whole and a cut lemon. It i...

Use fresh lemons.

Someone forwarded this to me:

I remember Grandma doing the lemon in water thing to keep “regular”. LISTEN UP:  This is something that we should all take seriously – just had a recent test myself that sent shivers up my spine – or near by – Even doctors are now saying that there is value in trying “LEMON”. So, a tablespoon of “real lemon” (the concentrate in a bottle) in a glass of water every morning. What can it  hurt?
The surprising benefits of lemon! I remain perplexed! Institute of Health Sciences, 819 N. L.L.C. Charles Street Baltimore , MD 1201. This is the latest in medicine, effective for cancer! Lemon (Citrus) is a miraculous product to kill cancer cells. It is 10,000 times stronger thanchemotherapy.
Why do we not know about that? Because laboratories are interested in making a synthetic version that will bring huge profits. Lemon juice is beneficial in preventing cancer. Its taste is pleasant and it does not produce the horrific effects of chemotherapy. How many people will die while this closely guarded secret is kept? As you know, the lemon tree is known for its varieties of lemons & limes. You can: eat the pulp, juice it, prepare drinks, sorbets, pastries, etc… It has many virtues, but most interesting is the effect it has on cysts & tumors. This plant is a proven remedy against cancers of all types.It is considered also as an anti-microbial spectrum against bacterial infections & fungi, effective against internal parasites & worms, it regulates blood pressure which is too high & an antidepressant, combats stress & nervous disorders.
The source of this information is one of the largest drug manufacturers which says that after more than 20 laboratory tests since 1970, the extracts revealed: It destroys malignant cells in 12 cancers, including colon, breast, prostate, lung & pancreas … The effects were 10,000 times better than Adriamycin, a drug normally used chemotherapeutic, slowing the growth of cancer cells. Even more astonishing: this type of therapy with lemon extract only destroys malignant cancer cells and it does not affect healthy cells.
Institute of Health Sciences, 819 N. L.L.C. Cause Street , Baltimore , MD
At the end, there was a plea to Forward the e-mail. I did—to a very few friends and relatives who I know are interested.
I understand the power of Vitamin C and flavonoids, etc…
Years ago I subscribed to Prevention Magazine (before it’s main focus was weight-loss and color ads—my opinion) and read from cover to cover in addition to other research. I’ve been taking Vitamin C in different forms for over 30 years. I’ve recommended it to others along the way and they experienced similar great results. Besides taking one capsule (not pill) every day, I beef up on the dose if I have the symptoms of a cold or flu.
This is not a ‘prescription’ for illness. You should do the research as I did. See your doctor if you need to. Research should be easier today than it was so long ago.
When I started taking supplements and herbs, I got so many side glances from people who thought I was nuts. Their eyes glazed over as I exalted the benefits of certain vitamins, nutrients, herbs, etc. So I gave up—on preaching. If people don’t want to hear, that’s okay with me. It’s a free country. So, I only give my opinions and results of my use of vitamins, etc… to those who want to know. Good for them!
To help you do the research, click on the snopes link to help you make up your own mind.

Lemons - Zitronen

for Snopes click here.

Who is Snopes? Go to and find out! You can’t go without it.


Art Donation

Live in Vermont?
Would you like to contribute by bidding on two of my artworks, which I have donated?

Go to for more info.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, January 28, 2012 • 5:30 – 9:00 pm

One print is a black and white print “Alisson’s Restaurant” un-matted,
packaged in archival wrapping.

The second print is a watercolor “Mt. Mansfield” matted and packaged in archival wrapping.
Have fun!

A Glorius Morning for My G-man.

G-man also known as G

G-man was her name. My son named her.

“It’s a female. Why G-man?” I asked.

“I don’t know. I just like it. But I call her ‘G’ for short. Can you take care of her  for me, mom?”

“Of course I will.”

So G stayed.

Several months later, G disappeared. I searched for two hours. She was just gone. Then I found a phone message waiting for me.

“Your cat was hit by a car. She is  at the vet’s. I told them to keep her alive until you returned.” It was Julie. My future sister-in-law. I called her for more information.

“I saw a white fluff on the road’s dividing line and thought is was a sweater or a bag. As I  got nearer, I realized it was a cat. When I stepped out, I recognized G. So I brought her to the vet’s.”

It was now after 5 PM and they were closed for the day. But I called the vet’s office anyway. The vet’s assistant let me in and escorted me to G’s cage.

She was blind, but she recognized my voice and crawled forward. She sat in her water dish but seemed unaware of it. She pleadingly meowed in the direction of my voice. Not only was she blind from the concussion, but her jaw drooped, her hind leg didn’t work right and I was sure her head ached. She was dirty, mostly with dried blood about her mouth. My heart ached to see her in such a state.

The assistant spoke with me about G’s fate. Because she was blind from a blow to the head and now had a broken jaw and an injury to her hind leg the recommendation was that she be ‘put under’.

“What’s the alternative?” I asked.

English: U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo, Japan (...

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“Wire her jaw, and take her home in a week.”

“How much will that cost?”

“We’ll charge for the surgery, but  she can stay and be attended to for a week for free. Then you can bring her home. We can’t make any promises that she will see again.”

I agreed. And within a week, I brought G home in an open box.  Her tail wagged when I walked up to our house. She recognized its smells and was happy to return home.

My dog, ShiSha, was excited to see her buddy back home. But after a few sniffs, Shi Sha turned away and presented no further interest in G.

Once inside, I set up a little stage for G on the kitchen floor. A box set on its side placed on a small rug for G to sleep in with her warm, familiar blanket. To the right of the rug, I set a litter box and to the left, I set a water dish and wet food. G learned to stay in that small environment identified by the boundaries of the rug as she waited for me to come home from work. Upon arrival, I placed her in my lap, rocked her like a baby and sang songs of encouragement.

She still had blood stained fur under her chin. When she felt better I washed her fur to remove the stains from her chin down to her chest. Perhaps she could smell the dried blood. Being clean again, she began to regularly wash herself without my assistance.

One day I set G outside in the grass. She was curious and the smells enticed her to explore. I realized she still couldn’t see because I had to  rescue her from an imminent fall from a high retaining wall bordering the grass. ShiSha was not impressed and continued to ignore G.

Weeks later, as I readied for work in early morning. G walked into the bathroom and stopped in front of the long mirror behind the door. I observed from another mirror on the opposite wall. She seemed to watch me through her mirror’s reflection of me. I moved my hand. She followed its movement. She meowed.  I picked her up. ShiSha followed me as I brought the cat to the bedroom. I placed her on the bed. She recognized her old play-mate ShiSha looking at her with ears perked and tail wagging. G walked close to the  edge of the bed. The dog and I watched as the cat jumped off the bed!

G-man also known as G

I can see clearly meow.

“G can see, ShiSha!” The dog got very excited and jumped onto the cat. “No ShiSha, don’t hurt her.” ShiSha was happy to have her play-mate and buddy back. She also wanted to play with G—now. I calmed ShiSha who then followed G throughout the house. She didn’t bump into furniture and eventually jumped onto the couch. She lovingly grabbed ShiSha’s head as she accepted a juicy lick on the cheek from her buddy.

It was a glorious morning for all three of us!

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What’s a Cat For?

For people.  🙂

Cats have been around for a very long time. They have been around humans for about 9500  years. Can you imagine the fleas?

A Maine Coon cat.

Just like my Charlie

Looks like my Charlie

When I adopted Charlie, one of my colleagues warned me, “He won’t last six months at your place.” That disturbed me because I had lost three cats within the last three years. I hoped it wouldn’t happen again for Charlie loved to romp and hang around the woods outside our home. Ten years later, he still does!

More than once, I’ve searched for him at night or early morning if he hadn’t returned home by dark. He usually comes home when it it’s safe (I believe). He is a great hunter and a very wary traveler. That would account for his survival. He is a Maine Coon cat, which gives him  coloring that blends into our surrounding. He wears camouflage!

Our property is part of a forest. Wildlife from owls, hawks, bald eagles, coyotes, bears, fox and raccoons roam at different times looking for a meal. We found animal tracks in the snow around the perimeter of our house in 2009, identified as mountain lion. A neighbor photographed a mountain lion in our neighborhood that same winter. Another watched a lion in his back yard drag a deer off in deep snow. Scary. Now, I fret at letting Charlie out at night.

I walked up to a black bear this last summer. He was more frightened of me than I of him. However, I know he is only about a year old. I watched momma bear and her three cubs the previous summer as they caught Charlie’s attention at the living room window. They were picking berries right by our door. The cat was ecstatic. The bears were so cute. But leave them alone and all is well.

American Black Bear (Ursus americanus), Réserv...

My bear friend and I had unanticipated meetings this past summer, I felt he was obviously not accustomed to nor totally aware of his surroundings and unsure of what is perceived as a danger.

He and I had met about four times. Each time he seemed to contemplate what to do next. Finally he remembered what mom said before he last departed to venture on his own, “Stay away from two-legged animals who live in strange caves.” So he clumsily turned, stumbling and crashing through the woods. If I walk up to this same bear when he is older, will he turn and run as before? I hope so.

Two days ago, as I walked our half mile drive, I heard a sudden crashing to my left among the trees at the edge of the drive. From the sound of each step, whatever it was, it was heavy. I stopped, anxiously determining what it could be. Then I realized it was my friend the bear. No other animal was as clumsy and noisy as he. I think we both have kept an eye out for each other. Upon my return after retrieving the mail, there was no sign of my friend. He was probably up a tree like his mom taught him—to avoid humans.

My cat, Charlie is still part of the family. No critters invited him to lunch. I believe he thinks himself human. He understands some of our words and we understand some of his. Between his purrs, meows, growls and body language. I know when he is hungry, happy, angry, wants a treat, wants us to accompany him on a walk, doesn’t want us to leave or wants us to go to bed by 9:00 PM. He jumps on our chest in the AM telling us it is time to get up and be about our business, which is to feed him and let him outside! If we don’t feed him on time, no worry, he finds food for all. He meows while carrying a rodent in his teeth. As he approaches the door he indicates, “I know you are out of food, so come eat. I’ll share.”

That’s my Charlie cat. Yes, cats are for people.


Gloomy day. Song I know and No Umbrella.

Gloomy day.

Rain, rain, rain. Feet sink into a soft carpet of wet. It squirts as the foot presses into the mass of mud and water and grass. A miserable way to get to the bath house. After taking a shower I stepped outside only to slip in the mud in my plastic sandals. Of course, the sandals, which have air holes, immediately filled with mud. So back to the bath house. Immerse foot in sink along with sandal.

Shower? Just stand in the rain long enough and you’ll be clean. Help preserve our precious water supply.

The sun peeked for a bit at mid morning, now it is back to gloom. I remember songs learned in grammar school. Don’t know the title, but the words are “Raining, it keeps on raining, no use complaining, just wait a while. And we’ll have sunshine, the summer time kind, come on and don’t mind, let see you smile … .” and it goes on. Anybody know that song? Oh my. The sun is peeking out again.;-)