The Wrong Lilies

The Wrong Lilies

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Ted Cruz Thinks We're All Stupid

We learned awhile back, that someone can be intelligent, well-educated, and still not have either judgment or stability of personality. Sound like anyone in the following article?  

The following link is to an excellent summary of the behavior we have been noting in any news about Ted Cruz.  As Texans, we are particularly disgusted that this individual (Cruz) purports to represent our state; as Americans, we’re ashamed of him and the damage his behavior has done to our country - $24 billion lost in the shutdown and counting.

Saturday, January 25, 2014


So this morning as we sat down to breakfast, we heard a cacophony of jaybird cries, and they kept going on.  And then we saw shadows of birds behind the blind at the window and it looked as if they were trying to get to the window.  Mystified, we opened the blind at what is rather a large window facing south and a bit east, so that we get a lot of morning sun glare, which is why the blind was still closed.  On the small brick windowsill, in the corner on the right, was a small grey owl – we think a screech owl, only 4 inches tall as it hunkered down, and the jays were doing everything they could to reach the owl or to at least annoy it.  Since owls are famous predators, we thought either the owl was injured or the jays felt safety in numbers, but soon the jays abandoned their efforts, either because they became aware of our presence or because they simply decided to do something else.   When we approached that area of the window, the owl did one of those owl things and swiveled its head toward us and opened its eyes a bit, although when it faced outwardly, it kept its eyes closed against the sunlight.

We made some phone calls and found someone who could give us advice and who offered to receive the owl and release it to a wild area if we put it in some sort of carrier and brought it to her.  We figured out that our cat carrier with a towel in it would be as good as anything else we had on hand, so my tender-hearted husband and my tender-hearted son made a plan.

Owls are such fascinating creatures.  Another adventure I had with an owl, that is either a memory or simply a family story, is that when I was not quite two, we were visiting my aunt and uncle and grandmother on their farm.  We had gone for a little walk along a path, perhaps to see their garden.  Anyway, it must have been late afternoon because we heard an owl hoot, probably a barn owl much larger than the visitor we had this morning.  Well, the unfamiliar sound frightened my very young self, and I left my parents behind and headed back at a run to my grandmother and sanctuary.  When I got to the gate of the yard fence, I was really in a hurry.  The gate was closed although Grandmother was just on the other side, but the ground beneath the gate was hollowed out from many goings and comings and I simply lay down and rolled under the gate, providing a lot of laughter for the family and proving that even very small children can figure out sometimes what is possible and what is not, at least if they’re scared enough.

As to the small screech owl this morning, when my husband and our son approached the creature to try to help it, it waited until our son was perhaps two feet away, and then flew over to a small crape myrtle tree nearby.  Still fascinated, they then approached the owl, now with his back to the sun and his eyes very large and careful.  When they got too close for the owl’s pleasure, off he simply went to what we hope was the safety of a nearby wild area.    It seems the owl could fly away after all.

Sunday, January 12, 2014


So for many years I used a packaged whole wheat pancake mix – what our granddaughter, when she was very young, called ‘pampapes’, at least we think that’s what she was saying.  Anyway, the whole wheat version of this pancake mix became impossible to find, and so I did what I call recipe-diving, going through recipes that I’ve copied or received, looking for a recipe I remember my dear friend Bettie giving me years ago.  I also recall having used the recipe and knew it was very good, but the mix, when it was around, was marginally quicker and we all know how that is.

Anyway, I easily found the recipe, because I keep together, and in a special place, all the recipes this particular friend has given me.  And this morning for our special Sunday breakfast, I cooked sausage patties and these pancakes and thrilled the hearts of my family.  And this is a perfect example of how grand it is to have friends, and how grand it is to share recipes with them, and plants sometimes, and conversations, and fun, and sometimes even sorrow, because even sorrow can sometimes be borne more easily with the comfort of a friend.

 And here is Bettie’s recipe for Oatmeal Whole Wheat pancakes:

1 and ¼ cups milk
1 cup oats
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon sugar (optional – depends on how you want to use the pancakes – I like to add the sugar

Combine milk and oats in bowl (I measured the milk in a 2 cup measure, then added the oats, made it easier to pour), let stand at least 5 minutes.

Beat the eggs in a small bowl,  add to the milk and oats along with the vegetable oil and stir well.

Measure the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a bowl.   Stir in the wet ingredients, mix until dry ingredients are moistened.  Cook on hot griddle, using ¼ cup of batter for each pancake.  Makes 10 4-inch pancakes.  Serve with whatever you like; my family likes syrup, I like jelly. 

Oh, and think of my dear friend Bettie.

Saturday, January 11, 2014


We went to the gym this morning, where we try to go at least three times a week, to move and improve our mature selves.  And there we encountered an acquaintance, a basically lovely individual who joins us in supporting our local library, who lives in an area where some of our dearest friends live.  And the weather having been the topic of news, concern, interest, all that, for several weeks now, and the day being damp and chilly, the subject of it being damp and chilly came inevitably up.  And to the comment by our acquaintance that it is damp and chilly, of course I replied that at least it was nothing as bad as in most of the rest of the country today, what with record snows and record cold and most areas being brought to a standstill, but here being only damp and chilly.  And she replied to me that the cold and snow and ice certainly meant “so much for global warming,” as if changes to our planet were being refuted.  We could only chuckle noncommittally as we walked off, but the entire encounter, while I was continuing my exertions, left me with lots of questions.

So here are some of the questions that popped into my mind that I would like to direct to all the scoffers of global warming:  Have they never used a thermometer to check for fever?  Have they never turned a pancake over on a griddle?  Have they never watched TV or used a phone or driven an automobile or just ridden in an automobile?  Oh, my, the list is very long.  And yet each one of these events, plus just about everything in modern human life, deals with science.  With agricultural science, with meteorological science, with medical science, with engineering science, with electrical science – that list is even longer than my question list. So why is it that a huge number of fellow humans on this planet blithely accept all of the inventions and tools that seem to just fall into our little paws without questioning sources, and yet would prefer to believe, rather than scientists, the people who make so much wealth from ignoring science, the owners of coal mines, the owners of natural gas and oil producing companies, the owners of manufacturers whose products fill our air with measurable solids that we actually breathe, all those who spend huge amounts of money to push the denial of science?

 But I know it will do no good to ask my questions.  It will only offend the folks who are already dedicated to ignoring scientists and ignoring facts that we are presented with on just about every newscast.  But why?  Some of it is fear and frustration because of a sense of helplessness.  Some of it is, of course, the refusal of listening, observing and forming conclusions rather than just accepting the naysayers.  And some of it, perhaps, is indifference, the saddest thing of all.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


When we have the sort of extreme and record heat and drought in this country that we have had for the last few years, or when we have the terrible tornadic storms that have swept away entire communities, or when violent hurricanes devastate low-lying islands in the Philippines and other areas, we don’t hear the rhetoric against the scientists who are trying to explain the conditions and effects of climate change, and that these changes can be attributed to global warming.  Nor is a word usually spoken when the Arctic ice caps break up and melt away. 

But let there be a bitter winter such as this one of 2013-2014, and those of our society who base their opinions on what they think and feel and believe rather than upon information and documentation and facts – why, those folks point out the record snows and the early and extreme cold spells and shrug and laugh at the scientists - you know, the fact-checkers.  These folks practice denial as if it were a religion, which in many ways, for them it is.

As if we’ve never had the phenomenon of early or severe winters.  As if melting ice caps would not provide more moisture, more fuel, for arctic storms.  As if putting record amounts of carbon from coal and other fuels would not have any effect on our air and our atmosphere.  As if it were far more important to get the last drop of oil, of natural gas, of coal, out of the earth, creating chasms and earthquakes and the fat wallets of the industries which spin these materials into energy and wealth and the devastation of pollution, far more important than developing clean energy sources, than taking care of our only planet, than observing the facts and caring about the future of our children.

Oh, there are some who truly ‘believe’ that climate change, global warming, critical carbon emissions, that none of these are ‘real’.  There are some who totally think/feel/believe that these things are the inventions of people trying to seize power to themselves (for what purpose no one seems to know).  But we as a society and we as a human race need to remember that at one time there were many who ‘believed’ the earth was flat.  That there were many who truly ‘believed’ that beyond the horizon ‘there be dragons’.  They believed that, but never the scientists who tried to show them reality.

For anyone out there who is curious, here's a link to a bit of science about our earth: