Mallard Swimming in Pickerel Lake

Those jade-colored heads, on the males, are so eye-catching. 


Occupy the Media!

Orwell would have, also, disapproved of the modern media trend known as "churnalism."

Churnalism is defined as "a form of journalism in which press releases, wire stories, and other forms of pre-packaged material are used to create articles in newspapers and other news media in order to meet increasing pressures of time and cost without undertaking further research or checking."


Grumpy the Dwarf, a Lighthouse, Bunnies ...

Since the Ironman and I (once again) became homeowners earlier this year, I got carried away putting fanciful lawn ornaments and lights in our flower gardens. 

See Albert the cat in this photo? He's pretending to be a lawn ornament. What a poser!


Federal Farm and Food Stamp Bill Defeated

Some of the details. 


Just What Michigan Needs: More Conservation Officers

My latest WW piece is about how Michigan legislators have approved raising hunting and fishing fees to increase the size of the DNR. A move that hurts the 'little guy,' like bow hunter John Shepherd (pictured) who lives on a fixed income. He can't afford the hikes, unlike the elite sportsmen who spoke in favor of the increases.


Northern Michigan Sandhill Cranes

On our way to Alanson, yesterday, the Ironman and I came upon this quartet of sandhill cranes silently making their way across a field of wildflowers.


Spotted in Amherst, MA

What a lata, as my Costa Rican mom calls clunkers. Although the word actually means "tin can."

A lata with a tinny, annoying message. Works for me.


Meet Amy Westphal

She's a homeschooling mom of 11 and the new owner of the Grand Traverse Pie Company store.

Amy, and her gang, are hard-working and fun-loving and serve up delicious cherry crumb pies.

Ribbon-cutting ceremony


Chaplain Steve DeBardelaben Praying with Miami Heat Players

Because there is more to life than winning a national championship. But I gotta admit, this was one very enjoyable set of NBA finals!


Lawless in Kansas

Check out the 'Si se puede' protestors that gathered outside of  Kris Kobach's (Kansas Sec. of State and immigration-enforcement attorney) house. Yes, his home. Scary. Mr. Kobach, and his wife, are the parents of four little girls. Thankfully, the family was not there when the trespassers showed up.

Imagine 2050, a leftist outfit, had the gall to describe the invasion thusly:  " ... peaceful Sunday procession left a trail of shoes at his doorstep symbolizing parents separated from their children as a result of his draconian immigration policies. The crowd that gathered in front of Kobach’s home was made up of community activists and family members, including children, representing thousands of Kansans and others from across the country whose families have been shattered by Kobach’s aggressive attacks on immigrants."

Imagine such warped thinking.

Attorney Kobach champions rule-of-law.


A Real-life 'Dr. Doolittle' Celebrates a 40-year Anniversary

My kayaking 'instructor' and fellow archery student, Dr. Larry Koehler, gets a nice write-up in the local paper.

Mr. Vet even tended to Albert the cat when he had a flea problem.

Congrats, Doc!


Those of you of a certain age will remember this famous pair

From another place and time in the schools of the United States. There was even a dog named "Spot."


A Wee Latino's Very Nice Rendition of a Patriotic Tune

El Charro de Oro is adorable. The Mariachi Marxist  Mayor Castro ... not so much.

Friday Fun: Critters Who Hop

Starting to see bunnies in my backyard. Like this one.

This, by the way, is not my unruly backyard. But this is a photo of a bunny I snapped when I was walking near the bay on the bikepath.


A Word About Vying for that Iron Throne

I don't care for HBO or any of its shows, especially Game of Thrones (due to the over-the-top content). However, the thinky-thinky discussions the series has generated, are, admittedly, intriguing.

Consider this observation from an Auburn University economist:

“The game of thrones in general is a game of cronyism because it’s all about forming political alliances, especially with people who can make you better off economically speaking."

Michigan is #35

My latest piece, for the Watchdog Wire, is about how the Wolverine State scored a paltry '35' on the Freedom in the 50 States index. Bah, humbug. Too much central control.


A Modern Dorcas*

This blind woman, who has such a large personality and such a sweet spirit, can sew, sew, sew. "Amazing" hardly describes her talents. Diane Rose also sells her quilts, if you are looking to give someone a unique gift. Hat tip: Steve K.

*Dorcas information

The Kayak Gets a Thumbs Up

Kayaking is a popular pastime in northern Michigan.

Finally - after living here for nearly four years - I got to try it, yesterday evening.

Here's my vessel, and it included a spray skirt. I gingerly tested the whole shebang on Walloon Lake. It was more work than I anticipated, but it was easier than canoeing.


Sun. Inspiration: Back to Eden (A Way to Cultivate the Soil)


How Should We Then Live?

Allan Wall writes about the Mainstream Media's (MSM) enthusiasm for pro-amnesty evangelicals.

I especially appreciate this principle he puts forth, in his column: "Real Christian charity is voluntarily using our own resources, in the name of Christ, to help others either here or abroad. The amnesty movement, on the other hand, is closely linked to Big Government socialism and globalism. Christians should not confuse charity with socialism, and we shouldn’t be bamboozled by the amnesty propaganda."

Amen, Brother Allan.


Roger Kahn: Act Like an Idiot Day

Even legislators need to exercise comic relief, now and then, but this Jack Sparrow wannabee's resolution is over-the-top ridiculous.

Senator Kahn, see post below to learn how a serious lawmaker conducts himself.


Albert has a new buddy


Ain't It the Truth

P. J. O'Rourke: "Everybody wants to save the earth; nobody wants to help mom do the dishes."


A Word About Faith at Pro Basketball's Biggest Stage

For you hoops fans who are watching the NBA playoffs, I pass along this message I received from Steve and Arlene DeBardelaben who are ministers with Athletes in Action in South Florida:

June, 2013

Steve & Arlene

Thank you for all you do for us!  Be certain that your prayers are essential. 

 Should you desire to contribute financially to our ministry, that is deeply appreciated.  

You can give online
or send a check.

Make your check to 
(Campus Crusade for Christ)
Do enclose a note with our name & account:

Steve & Arlene DeBardelaben 

Mail to:
PO Box 628222
Orlando, FL 32862-8222

heat logoTHE HEAT IS ON!

No doubt you are watching the countdown to the championship of the NBA.  Tonight is Game 7 of the Eastern Conference play-offs... the HEAT vs PACERS!
We provide chapel services for both teams one hour before Tip-off...yes, players from both Teams attend! At the same time Arlene provides chapel for the Heat dancers in their locker room.  All are eager for our short stories and the laminated Scripture cards we pass out at the games.  One side is a quote and the other side has scripture.  Here's tonight's card...  
Faith is to believe 
what we do not see ---
The Reward of this faith 
is to see what we believe!  
St. Augustine of Hippo

GOD exists and he  
Rewards those who 
sincerely seek him. 
Pray for us!

Tony Furnari: He Refused to Be a Victim

This real-life crime drama took place in 2012 but it remains a riveting read.

It features Lyman family friend, Tony Furnari, who legally defended himself with a firearm. Mr. Furnari is a jeweler who lives in Massachusetts. He has a big heart and has inspired others with his bravery.

His quick-thinking actions also rated Tony a write-up in an NRA publication.

Tony, right, with his son, Joey.


Sun. Inspiration: Kory Krumrey, Mike Sullivan

This is the cute announcement that Kory mailed to family and friends to announce his graduation from homeschool high school.

Kory, an upright young man who I've known since he was a tyke, lives in western Massachusetts. He is headed to the Lone Star State for college (Baylor) and is going to major in bizness.* He has been a home scholar for his entire academic 'career.'

Texas-sized congratulations to Kory and his parents, Melanie and Robert.

Meanwhile, here's Mike in the middle - flanked by two state lawmakers.

Now here he is, below, flanked by two friends at his graduation party. Mike is the senior class president of Petoskey (MI) High School, an Eagle Scout, and mature beyond his years. He will be attending a Michigan college (Grand Valley State) and hopes to become a journo.** Mitten-shaped congratulations to Mike and his parents, Gerard and Melissa.



Kyle Sticks Out His Tongue at Our Dumb Phones

This is the plucky fellow that talked the Ironman and me into acquiring a set of smart phones. He's not really sticking out his tongue (in that way); it's just that I was playing with the camera on my new Samsung, and I caught him in this pose.

Kyle says 'we made his day' when we officially turned off our non-fancy cell phones and traded up.

The Ironman chatting on his new iPhone 4.

Snapping a photo (with the talk to text phone) of my slippered feet.

I know, I know. I'm acting like *that* sort of blogger.