Wednesday, December 2, 2009

December

December brings us cooler weather (cold), rain & possibly even some frozen precipitation. I'm not a big fan of winter but I wouldn't mind having a white Christmas. Just seems that Christmas & Snow go together. Sitting in front of the fireplace watching classic Christmas Shows, drinking hot cocoa, or eggnog or whatever your drink may be. Eating cookies, cake, pie and all the sweets & goodies of the Holidays. Remembering that Jesus is the reason for the season. :)

It is the last month of the year. Hard to believe another year has past. Where does the time go? This is always a busy time of year. Christmas shopping, my daughter's birthday 10 days before Christmas, my son's birthday 10 days after Christmas, New Years, taking down the Christmas tree and other decorations.

Linus explains what Christmas is all about: Such a cute movie



Charlie Brown and his Christmas Tree

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Depression

People who don't suffer from it don't understand what a person goes through that has been diagnosed with depression. I have been diagnosed with depression and I take medication for it. It's not something I can control on my own. It's an illness and must be treated as such. Some people think it's not a big deal but it is a big deal to the person suffering from it. It affects our lives as well as those who are a part of our lives. I have done some research and found some good information about depression. I'm posting it here so that maybe others can understand what it's like to deal with this illness. I think a lot of people with depression are misunderstood by those who don't understand the illness or the symptoms and therefore it is very hard on relationships. I hope to educate more people about this illness.

Thanks for reading

Depression Basics

Some people say that depression feels like a black curtain of despair coming down over their lives. Many people feel like they have no energy and can't concentrate. Others feel irritable all the time for no apparent reason. The symptoms vary from person to person, but if you feel "down" for more than two weeks, and these feelings are interfering with your daily life, you may be clinically depressed.

Most people who have gone through one episode of depression will, sooner or later, have another one. You may begin to feel some of the symptoms of depression several weeks before you develop a full-blown episode of depression. Learning to recognize these early triggers or symptoms and working with your doctor will help to keep the depression from worsening.

Most people with depression never seek help, even though the majority will respond to treatment. Treating depression is especially important because it affects you, your family, and your work. Some people with depression try to harm themselves in the mistaken belief that how they are feeling will never change. Depression is a treatable illness.

Life with depression

Working with your doctor, you can learn to manage depression. You may have to try a few different medications to find the one that works best for you. Your doctor may also recommend that you see a therapist and/or make certain lifestyle changes.

Change won't come overnight—but with the right treatment, you can keep depression from overshadowing your life.

Depression-Related Mood Disorders

Major depressive disorder, commonly referred to as "depression," can severely disrupt your life, affecting your appetite, sleep, work, and relationships.

The symptoms that help a doctor identify depression include:

* constant feelings of sadness, irritability, or tension
* decreased interest or pleasure in usual activities or hobbies
* loss of energy, feeling tired despite lack of activity
* a change in appetite, with significant weight loss or weight gain
* a change in sleeping patterns, such as difficulty sleeping, early morning
awakening, or sleeping too much
* restlessness or feeling slowed down
* decreased ability to make decisions or concentrate
* feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, or guilt
* thoughts of suicide or death

If you are experiencing any or several of these symptoms, you should talk to your doctor about whether you are suffering from depression.

If you are in an immediate serious crisis please contact your doctor or go to your local hospital or emergency room.

Dysthymia is another mood disorder. People who have it may feel mildly depressed on most days over a period of at least two years. They have many symptoms resembling major depression, but with less severity.

Symptoms of depression may surface with other mood disorders. They include seasonal major depression (also known as seasonal affective disorder), postpartum depression, and bipolar disorder.

Seasonal Affective Disorder has symptoms that are seen with any major depressive episode. It is the recurrence of the symptoms during certain seasons that is the hallmark of this type of depression.

Postpartum Depression is a type of depression that can occur in women who have recently given birth. It typically occurs in the first few months after delivery, but can happen within the first year after giving birth. The symptoms are those seen with any major depressive episode. Often, postpartum depression interferes with the mother's ability to bond with her newborn. It is very important to seek help if you are experiencing postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is different from the "Baby Blues", which tend to occur the first few days after delivery and resolve spontaneously.

Bipolar disorder, another mood disorder, is different than major depressive disorder and has different treatments. For more information go to bipolar.com.

Causes of Depression

Depression has no single cause; often, it results from a combination of things. You may have no idea why depression has struck you.

Whatever its cause, depression is not just a state of mind. It is related to physical changes in the brain, and connected to an imbalance of a type of chemical that carries signals in your brain and nerves. These chemicals are called neurotransmitters.

Some of the more common factors involved in depression are:

* Family history. Genetics play an important part in depression. It can run in
families for generations.

* Trauma and stress. Things like financial problems, the breakup of a
relationship, or the death of a loved one can bring on depression. You can
become depressed after changes in your life, like starting a new job,
graduating from school, or getting married.

* Pessimistic personality. People who have low self-esteem and a negative
outlook are at higher risk of becoming depressed. These traits may actually be
caused by low-level depression (called dysthymia).

* Physical conditions. Serious medical conditions like heart disease, cancer,
and HIV can contribute to depression, partly because of the physical weakness
and stress they bring on. Depression can make medical conditions worse, since
it weakens the immune system and can make pain harder to bear. In some cases,
depression can be caused by medications used to treat medical conditions.

* Other psychological disorders. Anxiety disorders, eating disorders,
schizophrenia, and (especially) substance abuse often appear along with
depression.

Who Gets Depression?

Although depression can make you feel alone, 16% of Americans will have it during their lifetime. While depression can affect anyone, its effect may vary depending on your age and gender.

* Women are almost twice as likely to become depressed as men. The higher risk may be due partly to hormonal changes brought on by puberty, menstruation, menopause, and pregnancy.

* Men. Although their risk for depression is lower, men are more likely to go undiagnosed and less likely to seek help. They may show the typical symptoms of depression, but are more likely to be angry and hostile or to mask their condition with alcohol or drug abuse. Suicide is an especially serious risk for men with depression, who are four times more likely than women to kill themselves.

* Elderly. Older people may lose loved ones and have to adjust to living alone.
They may become physically ill and unable to be as active as they once were. These changes can all contribute to depression. Loved ones may attribute the signs of depression to the normal results of aging, and many older people are reluctant to talk about their symptoms. As a result, older people may not receive treatment for their depression.


Antidepressant Medications

More than 14 million Americans, or more than 6 percent of adults, experience depression in any given year. Despite these statistics, depression is not a normal part of life, regardless of your age, sex, or health status.

The good news is that depression is very treatable. Most patients, even those with severe depression, show improvement after they seek treatment. Your doctor will prescribe treatment based on the pattern of your depression, its severity, persistence of symptoms, and history.

Treatment Tips

Antidepressant medications work for many people—they can make you feel better, and can improve or completely relieve your symptoms. But sometimes people have unrealistic fears or expectations about them. Some hope to feel better overnight; others worry that medications will change their personalities in ways they won't like. Both extremes are unlikely. The first step towards getting better and staying better is to take your medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor.
Here are some treatment tips to keep in mind:

* It takes time for antidepressants to work. Although you may start to feel better within a couple of weeks, the full antidepressant effect may not be seen for several weeks. It is important to be patient and give the medicine a chance to work.

* Once you feel better, it is important to keep taking your antidepressant for as long as your doctor tells you to. Continued use, if recommended by your doctor, can help lower your chances of becoming depressed again in the future.

* Although some people only become depressed once, others—especially those who have been depressed before or have several risk factors—may need longer term treatment with medication.

* If you want to stop taking your medication, do so ONLY after discussing this with your doctor.

Like many drugs, depression medications can cause side effects and interact with foods or other medications. Tell your doctor about any medical conditions you have and about other medicines you're using. If you experience drug side effects, contact your doctor right away.

Other Therapies

Psychotherapy, or "talk therapy", in which you and a professional talk about what you're feeling, is a vital tool in the treatment of depression. For people with mild to moderate depression, it may be effective on its own. But many people with major depression do better with treatment that combines psychotherapy and medication.

Some of the therapy approaches used to treat depression are cognitive-behavioral, interpersonal, psychodynamic, and group therapy.

There are several types of therapists who work with people who have depression, including psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers. Finding the right therapist is an important step on the road to recovery.

Electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, is a treatment that is often misunderstood, but it can be effective in cases of extreme depression


Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy, or "talk therapy", is one of the most effective ways to treat depression. Studies have proven that talking to an expert about your condition can help resolve it. While the results are not immediate, you may find that just expressing what you're feeling can bring some relief.

Short-term therapy has become more common and may occur over a period of 10 to 20 weeks.

Types of therapy

Several kinds of therapy are used to treat depression:

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can help you identify and change the thought and behavior patterns that contribute to depression. People who are depressed tend to think negatively, and cognitive behavioral therapy teaches you how to identify and challenge the negative thoughts. This approach is usually done in short-term therapy, and has been found to be particularly helpful for depression.

Interpersonal therapy looks at how depression can be connected to troubled emotional relationships. Like cognitive-behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy tends to be a short-term therapy, and has been proven to work well with depression.

Psychodynamic therapy links depression to traumas and conflicts that happened earlier in your life, especially during childhood. It can be a short-term treatment, although it is often a longer process.

Group therapy allows you and other people with depression—or people with the same issues that contributed to your depression—to meet together with a therapist and share experiences. The approach of the group may be any of the ones listed above.

Depression Day by Day

Even after you've learned that you have depression and sought treatment for it, you won't feel better right away. Depression can be frustrating, because recovering from it takes time.

Helping Yourself

Every day can feel like a struggle when you're depressed. Medical care and therapy are the most important steps to recovery. But there are things you can do to help yourself feel better:

* Recognize early signs. It's important to recognize and treat depression as early as possible, which decreases your risk of becoming depressed again. If you pretend the problem isn't there, it's probably going to get worse. You need to watch for the types of events that contributed to depression in the past, and be alert for early symptoms.

* Set realistic goals. You may feel overwhelmed by everything you "should" be doing at home or at work. Try not to be hard on yourself. Remember that depression is an illness and that you can't force yourself out of it. Focus on small, realistic goals to ease yourself back into your work and family routine.

* Do what you enjoy. Even if you don't really feel like it, set aside time to do things that you like. Get together with friends. Take a walk. Go to the movies. Take up a hobby that you set aside years ago.

* Hold off on big decisions. Since depression can color your outlook on everything, it's best to avoid making any big decisions—quitting a job or moving, for instance—until you feel better.

* Avoid alcohol. Although you might think it will help you feel better, alcohol can make your depression worse. Depressed people are at special risk of developing substance abuse problems, and alcohol interacts with many antidepressants.

* Exercise. There's more and more evidence that exercise helps with mild to moderate depression. When you're considering an exercise plan, don't be too ambitious. Find an activity that you like, start slowly, and work up to exercising three times a week or more for 20 to 30 minutes.

Activities for You

Research has shown that physical activity can help people overcome mild to moderate depression. Any type of exercise seems to help. So, to make it easier to get started and stick with a routine, pick an activity that you enjoy and that fits your lifestyle.

Remember: People with a medical condition and people who have not exercised much should check with their healthcare provider before starting any exercise program.

Here are some questions you should ask yourself before choosing a routine:

* What physical activities do I like?

If you enjoy dancing, try an aerobics class. If being in the water feels good, do lap swimming or water aerobics. If being out in nature refreshes you, find a park to walk or jog in.
* Do I prefer group or individual activities?

If you crave solitude, try a solo bike ride or an exercise video. If you like company, join a gym, walk with a friend, or take a class at your local community center. If you're the competitive type, a game of tennis or one-on-one basketball may fit the bill.
* What programs best fit my schedule and lifestyle?

If you spend long hours at work, look for a nearby gym to visit before or after the workday. Take a brisk walk on your lunch hour (and get your co-workers to join you).

If spending time with the family is a priority, try exercising together with family members. Someone who works or cares for children at home might try exercise videos or walks around the neighborhood (maybe with the children in tow).

While it's ideal to get 30 minutes of moderate activity most days, you'll also benefit from several shorter sessions throughout the day.
* Do I have physical conditions that limit my choice of exercise?

See your doctor to help figure out what types of activity will be both safe and enjoyable for you.
* What fitness goals do I have in mind?

Almost any type of exercise can help to ease depression. But aerobic exercise will also aid weight loss and improve cardiovascular health. Lifting weights or doing other resistance exercises will help you gain strength and speed your metabolism. To improve flexibility, do stretching exercises, yoga, ballet, or tai chi.

Remember: People with a medical condition and people who have not exercised much should check with their healthcare provider before starting any exercise program.

Keeping A Journal

Keeping a journal can be a good way to learn more about your thoughts and feelings. It's not always easy—it can be painful to write about bad feelings—but writing a journal is one of the best self-help methods you can use.

To help you get started, here are some tips, and a sample journal entry.
Tips for keeping a journal

* Instead of just writing about events and happenings, focus on your thoughts and feelings about those events.

* Write for yourself only. This forces you to be honest. (At some point, though, you may want to share the journal with someone. This could be a therapist, or a very trusted friend or family member who can give you feedback.)

* Set the stage for writing. Find a comfortable spot to sit, take a deep breath, and begin. Write for 20 minutes without stopping.

* Write every day, if possible. It may help to write at the same time every day, maybe after dinner or before bed.

* Remember that the way you write doesn't matter. You don't have to use complete sentences, correct punctuation, or any punctuation, for that matter.

* Buy a journal you'll enjoy using, perhaps with illustrations or colored pages. Use colored pens or pencils if you like.

* If you really don't like to write, record your thoughts on a mini-cassette recorder.

Sample entry

"I nearly didn't get out of bed today. The only thing that got me going was the thought that I would get fired if I didn't go to work. Some days, it seems like no matter how hard I try, I can't do anything right and no one understands how I feel. I just feel so very tired, tired to the bone."

Getting Support

Even though millions of people are coping with depression right now, it's a medical condition that can make you feel completely alone.

One way that some have found helpful to work through this feeling is to join a support group. Whether they meet in person or online, support groups offer a place to talk about depression where people can help each other. Keep in mind that support groups are not a substitute for therapy or medical care. They are also different from group therapy, since they aren't led by a professional.

You may know people—friends, family, or co-workers—who don't understand your condition and are unsympathetic to it. Support groups are a good way to learn to deal with the stigma that can come with depression.

Ask your doctor or therapist for the names of support groups in your area. Here are some organizations that either run support groups or can give you information about them.

Note: The Depression.com Web site contains links to third-party Web sites on the Internet. These links are provided as a service to individuals interested in more information. These sites are not part of the Depression.com Web site, a GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Web site. The content and materials in these third-party Web sites are not produced or endorsed by GSK and may refer to uses of our products that are not recommended by GSK. You should always consult with your physician or healthcare professional before using any GSK prescription product.

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
(formerly the National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association )
730 North Franklin, Suite 501
Chicago, IL 60601-7204
Toll-free: (800) 826-3632
E-mail: chapters@dbsalliance.org
http://www.dbsalliance.org/

National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI)
Colonial Place Three
2107 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 300
Arlington, VA 22201-3042
Toll-free: (800) 950-NAMI (950-6264). This is a helpline that offers referrals to local support groups.
Phone: (703) 524-7600
TDD: (703) 516-7227
http://www.nami.org

National Foundation for Depressive Illness, Inc.
P.O. Box 2257
New York, NY 10116
Toll-free: (800) 239-1265
Support group information line: (800) 248-4344
http://www.depression.org/

National Mental Health Association
2001 North Beauregard Street, 12th Floor
Alexandria, VA 22311
Toll-free: (800) 969-NMHA (969-6642)
Phone: (703) 684-7722
TTY: (800) 433-5959
E-mail: infoctr@nmha.org
http://www.nmha.org
To seek a referral online, visit
http://www.nmha.org/infoctr/help/index.cfm
Online support groups:

Depression Chat
http://www.depressionchat.com

Depression Resources at WebMD
http://DepressionResources.webmd.com

Directory of Online Support Groups
http://directory.google.com/Top/Health/Mental_Health/
Disorders/Mood/Depression/Support_Groups/

Freedom from Fear
http://www.freedomfromfear.com/mssgbord.asp

SupportPath.com Depression
http://www.supportpath.com/sl_d/depression.htm

Finding Intimacy

One of the hardest things about depression is that it often makes you pull away from the people who could help you most. Leaving the house to meet a friend for coffee—or even getting out of bed at all—can feel impossible. Your depression may become so overwhelming that it seems easier to be by yourself and let relationships fade away.

But it is almost impossible to get through depression on your own. You must reach out and rely on other people for help, even if you don't think you want to.
Reaching out

A lot of people who are depressed feel self-critical, and may even doubt that their loved ones really care for them. These feelings may be symptoms of depression.

Try to push aside these feelings and talk to the people close to you. Explain what you're going through. Ask them for help. Having someone on your side—someone who encourages you in your treatment or goes with you to doctor's appointments—can make a huge difference in your recovery.
Depression and sex

Try to talk openly with your partner about what you're going through. Even though it may be embarrassing, don't ignore the problem.

Some antidepressants can cause side effects that get in the way of intimacy. While some side effects may lessen with time, your doctor may be able to decrease them by changing your dosage or medication.

Help Someone You Love

When people are depressed, they're not the only ones who suffer. Typically, many of those around a depressed person—friends, family, and loved ones—also struggle with the effects of his or her condition.

Watching someone you love fight depression can be frustrating and frightening. Remember, you can't take responsibility for someone else, and the decision to get help is up to the person with depression. But, there are things you can do.

For many people with depression, a friend or loved one who cares can be their most important resource.
What can I do?

* Learn about depression—its causes, symptoms, and treatments. Knowing about the condition will help you better understand what a depressed person is going through.

* Do what you can to make sure that a person with depression gets medical care. Encourage your friend or loved one to stick with his or her therapy or medication. Offer to go with him or her to appointments as support.

* Be supportive and patient. Listen to what the depressed person has to say.

* Without being pushy, encourage your friend or loved one to do the things that he or she used to enjoy. See friends. Go to the movies. Take a walk.

Emergencies

If someone you know is thinking about suicide, don't ignore it. Do whatever you can to get help for that person. Get in touch with his or her doctor or therapist.
Avoiding burnout

Helping a person with depression can be exhausting and overwhelming. Here are some things to keep in mind that can help both of you:

* Try to get other people involved in helping a person who's depressed, since doing it on your own can be difficult.

* People with depression often resist attempts to be helped. It's okay to feel angry and frustrated, but don't confuse the person you love with the illness.

* Depression isn't anyone's fault. It isn't possible to “snap out of” depression.

* No matter how overwhelmed you feel, take time for yourself.

Online caregiver support:

Note: The Depression.com Web site contains links to third-party Web sites on the Internet. These links are provided as a service to individuals interested in more information. These sites are not part of the Depression.com Web site, a GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Web site. The content and materials in these third-party Web sites are not produced or endorsed by GSK and may refer to uses of our products that are not recommended by GSK. You should always consult with your physician or healthcare professional before using any GSK prescription product.

Caregiver Support Kit
http://www.nwrcwa.org/caregiverkit3.shtml

Depression Caregiver Support
http://members.tripod.com/garyicare/

Depression Resources at WebMD
http://DepressionResources.webmd.com

Friday, October 23, 2009

Hubble Space Telescope

Chapter 9: There are two parts




Hubble Space Telescope

Chapter 8 of the series


Hubble Space Telescope

Part 7 of the series




Hubble Space Telescope

Chapter 6 of the series

Hubble Space Telescope

Chapter 5 of the series

Hubble Space Telescope

This is chapter 4 of the series.


Hubble Space Telescope

Part 3 in a series of videos produced by the ESA for public distribution about the Hubble Space Telescope and much more


Hubble Space Telescope

Part 2 in a series of videos produced by the ESA for public distribution about the Hubble Space Telescope and much more.


Hubble Space Telescope

Part 1 in a series of videos produced by the ESA for public distribution about the Hubble Space Telescope and much more.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Paranormal Activity

Most of you have probably heard about the movie Paranormal Activity that is supposedly based on true events. I've wanted to see it ever since I heard so much rave about it but it was not available nationwide until recently. Well it opened here this Friday the 16th and my sister & I went yesterday to see it. Without spoiling it for those who have not seen it, I wanted to post my review of this movie.

First, it is a very convincing story, whether true or not, I don't know but it is very believable and definitely had some creepy scary moments in it. If this was happening to me, I would probably go insane.

At the beginning of the movie I was a bit disappointed thinking that this was another one of those over-rated over-hyped movies but after it gets into the movie it is worth the wait.

Even if you don't believe in this kind of Paranormal phenomena, it's still worth it just to get scared a few times and it will make you think about messing with evil entities.

I actually would consider watching it again. It was well done to make you think it was real if in fact it was not.

I did think the boyfriend was a jerk for the most part.

I do recommend this movie it you want that OMG! creepiness feeling. You may want to sleep with the lights on after this movie. OR NOT

October

The month of October brings us autumn or fall as most people like to call it. This is probably my favorite time of year. The leaves are turning, the weather is substantially cooler and it's the beginning of football season (my favorite sport). It also brings us HALLOWEEN. To most Halloween is a time for the kids to get dressed up in their scariest costumes and go trick or treating, carving jack-o-lanterns and scaring their friends & family. It's also a time for haunted houses or haunted trails and my favorite, horror movies; the classics as well as the newer horror flicks.

Here are some of my favorite horror movies:

Arachnophobia
Some may not consider this a horror but this creeps me out because I have a fear of spiders....eekkkkk

Dawn of the Dead
The original as well as the remake

Nightmare on Elm Street
I just love Freddy Kruger (sick huh?)
This one scares me because Freddy kills you in your sleep and we all know how frightening nightmares can be. Ever wake up shaking from a nightmare?

The Exorcist
That is some creepy stuff right there

Halloween I & II
The original version is scary enough but Rob Zombie's version was awesome, I jumped out of my seat a few times watching these.

Night of the Living Dead
The classic as well as the remake...

Okay now for some history on Halloween (the holiday)


Halloween Bonfire

Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in).

The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.

During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.
The History of Halloween.

Video: The haunting History of All Hallow's Eve (Halloween).

Video: Timothy Dickinson tells the intriguing tale of why we celebrate Halloween, and it's evolution from Samhain, an ancient Celtic Harvest Festival.

The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.

Halloween Costumes

As European immigrants came to America, they brought their varied Halloween customs with them. Because of the rigid Protestant belief systems that characterized early New England, celebration of Halloween in colonial times was extremely limited there.

It was much more common in Maryland and the southern colonies. As the beliefs and customs of different European ethnic groups, as well as the American Indians, meshed, a distinctly American version of Halloween began to emerge. The first celebrations included "play parties," public events held to celebrate the harvest, where neighbors would share stories of the dead, tell each other's fortunes, dance, and sing. Colonial Halloween festivities also featured the telling of ghost stories and mischief-making of all kinds. By the middle of the nineteenth century, annual autumn festivities were common, but Halloween was not yet celebrated everywhere in the country.
Halloween: Pumpkins on steps

In the second half of the nineteenth century, America was flooded with new immigrants. These new immigrants, especially the millions of Irish fleeing Ireland's potato famine of 1846, helped to popularize the celebration of Halloween nationally. Taking from Irish and English traditions, Americans began to dress up in costumes and go house to house asking for food or money, a practice that eventually became today's "trick-or-treat" tradition. Young women believed that, on Halloween, they could divine the name or appearance of their future husband by doing tricks with yarn, apple parings, or mirrors.

In the late 1800s, there was a move in America to mold Halloween into a holiday more about community and neighborly get-togethers, than about ghosts, pranks, and witchcraft.
Halloween Costumes

Video: Historical Halloween Costumes of the 1920s.

Video: New York's Village Halloween Parade is one of the most unique Halloween Celebrations.

At the turn of the century, Halloween parties for both children and adults became the most common way to celebrate the day. Parties focused on games, foods of the season, and festive costumes. Parents were encouraged by newspapers and community leaders to take anything "frightening" or "grotesque" out of Halloween celebrations. Because of their efforts, Halloween lost most of its superstitious and religious overtones by the beginning of the twentieth century.

By the 1920s and 1930s, Halloween had become a secular, but community-centered holiday, with parades and town-wide parties as the featured entertainment. Despite the best efforts of many schools and communities, vandalism began to plague Halloween celebrations in many communities during this time. By the 1950s, town leaders had successfully limited vandalism and Halloween had evolved into a holiday directed mainly at the young. Due to the high numbers of young children during the fifties baby boom, parties moved from town civic centers into the classroom or home, where they could be more easily accommodated. Between 1920 and 1950, the centuries-old practice of trick-or-treating was also revived. Trick-or-treating was a relatively inexpensive way for an entire community to share the Halloween celebration. In theory, families could also prevent tricks being played on them by providing the neighborhood children with small treats. A new American tradition was born, and it has continued to grow. Today, Americans spend an estimated $6.9 billion annually on Halloween, making it the country's second largest commercial holiday.

Halloween: Witches

Young Witch on Broomstick

Photo Credit: Corbis

Halloween has always been a holiday filled with mystery, magic and superstition. It began as a Celtic end-of-summer festival during which people felt especially close to deceased relatives and friends. For these friendly spirits, they set places at the dinner table, left treats on doorsteps and along the side of the road and lit candles to help loved ones find their way back to the spirit world.

Today's Halloween ghosts are often depicted as more fearsome and malevolent, and our customs and superstitions are scarier too. We avoid crossing paths with black cats, afraid that they might bring us bad luck. This idea has its roots in the Middle Ages, when many people believed that witches avoided detection by turning themselves into cats. We try not to walk under ladders for the same reason. This superstition may have come from the ancient Egyptians, who believed that triangles were sacred; it also may have something to do with the fact that walking under a leaning ladder tends to be fairly unsafe. And around Halloween, especially, we try to avoid breaking mirrors, stepping on cracks in the road or spilling salt.
Witchcraft

Video: Witchcraft: Persecution, spawned from the black death hysteria, the inquisition was formed to punish witches and other non-believers.

Video: Witchcraft: The Salem Witch Trial, fourteen women and five men would be hanged on the gallows hill.

But what about the Halloween traditions and beliefs that today's trick-or-treaters have forgotten all about? Many of these obsolete rituals focused on the future instead of the past and the living instead of the dead. In particular, many had to do with helping young women identify their future husbands and reassuring them that they would someday--with luck, by next Halloween!--be married.

In 18th-century Ireland, a matchmaking cook might bury a ring in her mashed potatoes on Halloween night, hoping to bring true love to the diner who found it. In Scotland, fortune-tellers recommended that an eligible young woman name a hazelnut for each of her suitors and then toss the nuts into the fireplace. The nut that burned to ashes rather than popping or exploding, the story went, represented the girl's future husband. (In some versions of this legend, confusingly, the opposite was true: The nut that burned away symbolized a love that would not last.) Another tale had it that if a young woman ate a sugary concoction made out of walnuts, hazelnuts and nutmeg before bed on Halloween night, she would dream about her future husband. Young women tossed apple-peels over their shoulders, hoping that the peels would fall on the floor in the shape of their future husbands' initials; tried to learn about their futures by peering at egg yolks floating in a bowl of water; and stood in front of mirrors in darkened rooms, holding candles and looking over their shoulders for their husbands' faces.

Other rituals were more competitive. At some Halloween parties, the first guest to find a burr on a chestnut-hunt would be the first to marry; at others, the first successful apple-bobber would be the first down the aisle.

Of course, whether we're asking for romantic advice or trying to avoid seven years of bad luck, each one of these Halloween superstitions relies on the good will of the very same "spirits" whose presence the early Celts felt so keenly. Ours is not such a different holiday after all!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Number Three

Okay, this is the last one of the series.

Number One

This is the first of I believe 3 videos that tell a story.

Number Two

Okay, here's another one that just tears me up. This makes me cry every time I see it but I love this song.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Labor Day

Here is some interesting history on Labor Day.

The History of Labor Day

Labor Day: How it Came About; What it Means

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Founder of Labor Day

More than 100 years after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.
Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those "who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold."
But Peter McGuire's place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

The First Labor Day

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The Central Labor Union held its second Labor Day holiday just a year later, on September 5, 1883.
In 1884 the first Monday in September was selected as the holiday, as originally proposed, and the Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a "workingmen's holiday" on that date. The idea spread with the growth of labor organizations, and in 1885 Labor Day was celebrated in many industrial centers of the country.

Labor Day Legislation

Through the years the nation gave increasing emphasis to Labor Day. The first governmental recognition came through municipal ordinances passed during 1885 and 1886. From them developed the movement to secure state legislation. The first state bill was introduced into the New York legislature, but the first to become law was passed by Oregon on February 21, 1887. During the year four more states — Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York — created the Labor Day holiday by legislative enactment. By the end of the decade Connecticut, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania had followed suit. By 1894, 23 other states had adopted the holiday in honor of workers, and on June 28 of that year, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

A Nationwide Holiday

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take were outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public "the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations" of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has undergone a change in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation's strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.

Monday, August 17, 2009

August

Here we are with August almost over and I haven't posted anything to date. I thought I'd search the net for some interesting facts for the month of August. We don't have any official holidays. Although we've had Elvis week it has been rather a slow & boring month for entertainment purposes. Let's take a look at some facts about August.

Bizarre, Crazy, Silly, Unknown Holidays & Observances

Stone= Peridot Flower= Gladiolus

August Monthly Observances


American Adventures Month
American Indian Heritage Month

American History Essay Contest

Black Business Month
Cataract Awareness Month
Children's Eye Health & Safety Month
Children's Vision & Learning Month
Get Ready for Kindergarten Month
Golf Month

Happiness Happens Month
Motorsports Awareness Month
National Immunization Awareness Month
National Inventor's Month
National Panini Month
National Water Quality Month

National Win With Civility Month
Neurosurgery Outreach Month
Psoriasis Awareness Month

Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness Month
What Will Be Your Legacy Month

August Weekly Observances


World Breastfeeding Week: 1-7
Simplify Your Life Week: 1-7

National Clown Week: 2-8

National Fraud Awareness Week: 2-8
Single Working Women's Week: 2-8
Exhibitor Appreciation Week: 3-7
Psychic Week: 3-7
Sturgis Bike Rally: 3-9
Intimate Apparel Market Week: 5-7

Hobo Week: 6-9
Elvis Week: 8-16
Assistance Dog Week: 9-15
National Resurrect Romance Week: 9-15
Mae West Week: 14-17
National Aviation Week: 16-22
Weird Contest Week: 17-21
National Safe at Home Week: 24-28
Be Kind To Humankind Week: 25-31
Minority Enterprise Development Week: 30-9/5
Waffle Week: 31-9/6

August Daily Observance


*Girlfriend's Day: 1
*Lughnasa - 1

*Respect For Parents: 1
Rounds Resounding Day: 1
Sweet Corn Day: 1
*US Air Force Day: 1

*World Wide Web Day: 1

National Mustard Day: 1
Sister's Day: 2
Friendship Day: 2

* Watermelon Day: 3
*
Coast Guard Day: 4
*National Chocolate Chip Day: 4
National Night Out: 4
*International Beer Day: 5

National Underwear Day: 5

*Hiroshima Day: 6
*National Fresh Breath (Halitosis) Day: 6
Braham Pie Day: 7

*Lighthouse Day: 7

*Particularly Preposterous Packaging Day: 7
*Professional Speakers Day: 7
Purple Heart Day: 7
Twins Day: 7-9
Garage Sale Day: 8

*
The Date to Create: 8
Eleanor Roosevelt Day: 8-10
*Happiness Happens Day: 8
Odie Day: 8
(Garfield's pal)
*Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor's Porch Night: 8
National Garage Sale Day: 8
Assistance Dog Day: 9
*International Day of The World's Indigenous People: 9
*Veep Day: 9
*National Duran Duran Appreciation Day: 10
*Smithsonian Day: 10
*S'mores Day: 10

Ingersoll Day: 11
President's Joke Day: 11
*IBM PC Day: 12
*International Youth Day: 12
*Sewing Machine Day: 12
*Vinyl Record Day: 12
*International Left Hander's Day: 13

Kool-Aid Day: 14-16
*National Navajo Code Talkers Day: 14
*V-J Day: 14
Assumption of the Virgin Mary: 15
*Best Friends Day: 15
*Chauvin Day: 15
*National Relaxation Day: 15
National Homeless Animals Day: 15
Sandcastle & Sculpture Day: 15
*Joe Miller's Joke Day: 16
*Meaning of "Is" Day: 17
*National Thrift Shop Day: 17

*Bad Poetry Day: 18
Cupcake Day: 18

Mail Order Catalog Day: 18
*Aviation Day: 19
*"Black Cow" Root Beer Float Day: 19
National Medical Dosimetrist Day: 19

Pony Express Day: 20
Virtual World's Day: 20

Men's Grooming Day: 21
*Poet's Day: 21
*Senior Citizen's Day: 21

(World) Daffodil Day: 21

*Hug Your Boss Day: 22
Ramadan: 22
*Southern Hemisphere Hoodie Hoo Day: 22
*Be An Angel Day: 22
*Day For The Remembrance of The Slave Trade & Its Abolition: 23
*Valentino Day: 23
*Vesuvius Day: 24
*National Waffle Day: 24
*Kiss and Make Up Day: 25
*National Second-hand Wardrobe Day: 25
*National Dog Day: 26
*Women's Equality Day: 26
*Global Forgiveness Day: 27
*Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day: 28
*Crackers Over The Keyboard Day: 28
According to Hoyle Day: 29
*More Herbs, Less Salt Day: 29
National Sarcoidosis Awareness Day: 29
*National Holistic Pet Day: 30
*National Toasted Marshmallow Day: 30
*Love Litigating Lawyers Day: 31




Saturday, July 4, 2009

Thursday, July 2, 2009

End Of My Journey

Artist: Harry Stewart
Song: End Of My Journey

Lord You know that I've been bad
So there's no use in lying to myself
Heavenly Father please forgive me
I really don't want to disown myself

Chorus
Oh when I come to the end of my journey
Weary of life, the battle is won
Carry myself, the cross of redemption
We'll understand it, better by and by

Lord sometimes I feel like Samson
You know the world has so many Delilah's
Almighty God give me just a little more time
To right all the wrong that I have done

Chorus
Oh when I come to the end of my journey
Weary of life, the battle is won
Carry myself, the cross of redemption
We'll understand it, better by and by
We'll understand it, better by and by
Repeat chorus

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Jon Voight at 2009 GOP Senate-House Dinner

I posted this video because it's rare these days to see one of the Hollywood Elite @ a GOP event. As you all may know, most of your Celebrities are liberals and hated George Bush with a passion and couldn't wait to bash him about anything & everything every chance they got. On several ocassions they would call him an idiot, a war monger & evil among other things (award shows, etc) and as you probably remember, we Conservatives were not allowed to talk about Barack Obama's associates or his past or his family, however Sarah Palin's family was free freign. It is my opinion that Barack Obama won this election with the help of the MSM & those Hollywood Elite with the exception of a very few and the intimidation of being labeled a racist if one did not vote for a Black Man. To set the record straight, I don't have a problem with the color of the man's skin, rather what I disagree with is Socialism/Marxism. I am a Conservative & a Christian and could not in my heart vote Democrat as I am pro life. I also believe in less Government control over "WE THE PEOPLE" and I believe in the Constitution & The Bill of Rights. I do not hate the man and do not wish any ill will to him or his family but the man is not experienced enough to be POTUS (the most powerful nation in the world) and I think we are seeing that inexperience showing in his decisions. What I feel we need is another Ronald Reagon.

Anyway, enough of my ranting for now, I hope you enjoy this video and feel free to leave comments if you wish.

Thanks


Monday, May 25, 2009

TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER

TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER

Interesting facts about the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Sentinels of the Third United States Infantry Regiment "Old Guard"

Q: How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why?

A: 21 steps. It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute, which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

Q: How long does he hesitate after his about face to begin his return walk and why?

A: 21 seconds, for the same reason as answer number 1.

Q: Why are his gloves wet?

A: His gloves are moistened to prevent his losing his grip on the rifle.

Q: Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time, and if not, why not?

A: No, he carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After his march across the path, he executes an about face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

Q: How often are the guards changed?

A: Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

Q: What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?

A: For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5' 10" and 6' 2" tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30".

Other requirements of the Guard:

They must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES. They cannot swear in public FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES and cannot disgrace the uniform {fighting} or the tomb in any way.

After TWO YEARS, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn. The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.

The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt. There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform. Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror.

The first SIX MONTHS of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone, nor watch TV. All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred. Among the notables are: President Taft, Joe E. Lewis {the boxer} and Medal of Honor winner Audie Murphy, {the most decorated soldier of WWII} of Hollywood fame. Every guard spends FIVE HOURS A DAY getting his uniforms ready for guard duty.

The Sentinels Creed:

My dedication to this sacred duty is total and wholehearted. In the responsibility bestowed on me never will I falter. And with dignity and perseverance my standard will remain perfection. Through the years of diligence and praise and the discomfort of the elements, I will walk my tour in humble reverence to the best of my ability. It is he who commands the respect I protect. His bravery that made us so proud. Surrounded by well meaning crowds by day alone in the thoughtful peace of night, this soldier will in honored glory rest under my eternal vigilance.

More Interesting facts about the Tomb of the Unknowns itself:

The marble for the Tomb of the Unknowns was furnished by the Vermont Marble Company of Danby, Vt. The marble is the finest and whitest of American marble, quarried from the Yule Marble Quarry located near Marble, Colorado and is called Yule Marble. The Marble for the Lincoln memorial and other famous buildings was also quarried there.

The Tomb consists of seven pieces of rectangular marble: Four pieces in sub base; weight Â- 15 tons;

One piece in base or plinth; weight Â- 16 tons;

One piece in die; weight Â- 36 tons;

One piece in cap; weight Â- 12 tons;

Carved on the East side (the front of the Tomb, which faces Washington, D.C.) is a composite of three figures, commemorative of the spirit of the Allies of World War I.

In the center of the panel stands Victory (female).

On the right side, a male figure symbolizes Valor.

On the left side stands Peace, with her palm branch to reward the devotion and sacrifice that went with courage to make the cause of righteousness triumphant.

The north and south sides are divided into three panels by Doric pilasters. In each panel is an inverted wreath.

On the west, or rear, panel (facing the Amphitheater) is inscribed:

HERE RESTS IN HONORED GLORY AN AMERICAN SOLDIER KNOWN BUT TO GOD

The first Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was a sub base and a base or plinth. It was slightly smaller than the present base. This was torn away when the present Tomb was started Aug. 27, 1931. The Tomb was completed and the area opened to the public 9:15 a.m. April 9, 1932, without any ceremony.

Cost of the Tomb: $48,000

Sculptor: Thomas Hudson Jones

Architect: Lorimer Rich

Contractors: Hagerman & Harris, New York City

Inscription: Author Unknown

(Interesting Commentary)

The Third Infantry Regiment at Fort Myer has the responsibility for providing ceremonial units and honor guards for state occasions, White House social functions, public celebrations and interments at Arlington National Cemetery and standing a very formal sentry watch at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

The public is familiar with the precision of what is called "walking post" at the Tomb. There are roped off galleries where visitors can form to observe the troopers and their measured step and almost mechanically, silent rifle shoulder changes. They are relieved every hour in a very formal drill that has to be seen to be believed.

Some people think that when the Cemetery is closed to the public in the evening that this show stops. First, to the men who are dedicated to this work, it is no show. It is a "charge of honor." The formality and precision continues uninterrupted all night. During the nighttime, the drill of relief and the measured step of the on-duty sentry remain unchanged from the daylight hours. To these men, these special men, the continuity of this post is the key to the honor and respect shown to these honored dead, symbolic of all unaccounted for American combat dead. The steady rhythmic step in rain, sleet, snow, hail, heat and cold must be uninterrupted. Uninterrupted is the important part of the honor shown.

Recently, while you were sleeping, the teeth of hurricane Isabel came through this area and tore hell out of everything. We had thousands of trees down, power outages, traffic signals out, roads filled with downed limbs and "gear adrift" debris. We had flooding and the place looked like it had been the impact area of an off-shore bombardment.

The Regimental Commander of the U.S. Third Infantry sent word to the nighttime Sentry Detail to secure the post and seek shelter from the high winds, to ensure their personal safety.

THEY DISOBEYED THE ORDER!

During winds that turned over vehicles and turned debris into projectiles, the measured step continued. One fellow said "I've got buddies getting shot at in Iraq who would kick my butt if word got to them that we let them down. I sure as hell have no intention of spending my Army career being known as the damned idiot who couldn't stand a little light breeze and shirked his duty." Then he said something in response to a female reporters question regarding silly purposeless personal risk... "I wouldn't expect you to understand. It's an enlisted man's thing." God bless the rascal... In a time in our nation's history when spin and total b.s. seem to have become the accepted coin-of-the-realm, there beat hearts - the enlisted hearts we all knew and were so damn proud to be a part of - that fully understand that devotion to duty is not a part-time occupation. While we slept, we were represented by some damn fine men who fully understood their post orders and proudly went about their assigned responsibilities unseen, unrecognized and in the finest tradition of the American Enlisted Man. Folks, there's hope. The spirit that George S. Patton, Arliegh Burke and Jimmy Doolittle left us ... survives.

On the ABC evening news, it was reported recently that, because of the dangers from Hurricane Isabel approaching Washington, DC, the military members assigned the duty of guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier were given permission to suspend the assignment. They refused. "No way, Sir!"

Soaked to the skin, marching in the pelting rain of a tropical storm, they said that guarding the Tomb was not just an assignment; it was the highest honor that can be afforded to a service person. The tomb has been patrolled continuously, 24/7, since 1930.

Very, very proud of our soldiers in uniform

Memorial Day 2009

To All The Men & Women who keep us safe and those that have made the ultimate sacrifice.

THANK YOU

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ride Along Night

May 9, 2009

C.P.A. (Citizens Police Academy) V.I.P. Ride Along with the SPD

After completing 12 weeks of classes @ the Citizens Police Academy for the Southaven Police Department we finished by doing a ride along with police officers for several hours. I had the honor of riding along with Sgt. Goff. He was very professional as well as informative and I had fun in the process. It was never boring even though there were no arrests we did get to go fast a few times :-)

I arrived at the SPD @ 5:30 for a 6:00 appointment. We were to ride from 6-11. Left the HQ shortly after 6:00 and headed out on patrol. Around 6:30 The call came in for a simple assault on a 14 yo white male. The suspect was not apprehended but was said to be a 16yo black male going by the name of Wisconsin. That's all the information given to Sgt. Goff by the victim at the time of the report so an arrest could not be made until the suspect was identified. We returned to HQ to file the report and then back out on patrol. The rest of the night was uneventful for the most part, mostly traffic stops and a few citations issued for speeding and improper equipment.

It was a pretty quiet night for the most part but interesting enough for me just the same. Gave me a whole new respect for what they do and the hours they put in to serve & protect the citizens. It's not an easy job and I'm sure they don't get the respect they deserve. They work 12 hour shifts and deal with all kinds of problems and many different people as well. I'm sure it can be very stressful at times as they are human just like the rest of us and they deserve our respect and gratitude.

I think it's a wonderful program for anyone wanting to learn what goes on inside the police department and on the job for these men & women of law enforcement. Most of the general public has know idea what these men & women deal with on a daily basis. These guys do a great service to our community and I feel more safer knowing there are people like them out there watching out for our best interest and keeping our communities safe.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

JeSus Poem

A Poem that an anonymous person wrote years ago for all of us. I truely believe in this poem. This is Jesus' mother, whom I love very much. Pray for Jesus' and the love he has for His Mother.
A Poem that an anonymous person wrote years ago for all of us. I truely believe in this poem. This is Jesus' mother, whom I love very much. Pray for Jesus' and the love he has for His Mother.
Category:

Mother's Day

To all the mothers on this day of honor. Happy Mother's Day

My mom is the greatest and I could never thank her for being such a warm loving person. She has taught many things and will always be special in so many ways. My life would not be complete without her, she is a blessing from God.

Thank you for giving birth to me & for raising me to be the person I am today. I hope I am as great a mom to my children as you have been to me.

I Love You

Friday, May 1, 2009

Beale Street Music Festival

Click here for performances times!

http://s3.amazonaws.com/1227.assets/2009_bsmf_stages.pdf


Friday, May 1 - Gates Open @ 5pm
The All-American Rejects
Steve Miller Band
Ben Harper & Relentless7
Tommy Castro
Katy Perry
The Cult
G. Love & Special Sauce
Jack's Mannequin
Rise Against
Ronnie Baker Brooks
Matt Nathanson
Medeski, Martin & Wood
Lurrie Bell
Bonnie Bramlett

Saturday, May 2 - Gates Open @ 1pm
Al Green
Korn
George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic
John Lee Hooker, Jr.
Shinedown
Elvis Costello
The Roots
Curtis Salgado
Saving Abel
Los Lobos
Michael Burks
The Bar-Kays
Thriving Ivory
Susan Tedeschi
Julian Marley
Cedric Burnside & Lightin' Malcolm
Chancho En Piedra (from Chile)
Muck Sticky
Green River Ordinance
Hubert Sumlin
Billy Gibson Band
Shane Dwight
Jump Back Jake

Sunday, May 3 - Gates Open at 1pm
James Taylor
311
Fall Out Boy
John Mayall
Hinder
Bonnie Raitt
Snoop Dogg
Guitar Shorty
Theory of a Deadman
Jerry Lee Lewis
Three 6 Mafia
Sherman Robertson
Chancho En Piedra (from Chile)
Amos Lee
Prosevere
Damon Fowler
Dead Confederate
Reba Russell Band

Performing May 1-3 at the SoCo Blues Shack
Richard Johnston
Blind Mississippi Morris
Robert "Wolfman" Belfour
James "Super Chikan" Johnson

MIM

"It's the largest pork barbecue contest on the planet," said Memphis in May executive vice president, Diane Hampton. Also known as the "Superbowl of Swine" and the "College of Pig Knowledge," the event is held on the third Saturday in May each year on the banks of the Mississippi River at Tom Lee Park in Downtown Memphis. Barbecue competitors and enthusiasts come from all over the world to participate in the annual event, one of the biggest and best known bbq competitions held each year.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Spring Is In The Air

Well, it is officially Spring and the weather is finally beginning to feel like springtime.

Today, I thought I'd post a video with some really great music. This makes me smile and feel all giddy.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

April

WOW! Have been really busy this month and just realized I haven't posted one thing for the month of April :(

I will work on it before the end of the month. Don't want to be neglecting my duties now. LOL

The beginning of Spring is such a lovely time of year. All the flowers are blooming, butterflies & bees flying around pollinating and making more flowers. Squirrels running around, scampering up trees and running across power lines. Birds chirping & singing. All the lovely sounds of Spring. Makes you want to just sit outside and enjoy the beauty that God has created for us.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Macho Sauce Productions

Alfonzo is da man. Here's a man after my own heart, he tells it like it is and he's right on. Enjoy!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Dennis Swanberg

More good comedy by Dennis Swanberg...This guy cracks me up.....

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dennis Swanberg

This guy is hilarious. I thought we could use some good clean comedy today. Enjoy!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Rapture & The Tribulation

This is the first of several videos I've found concerning the Rapture and subsequent Tribulation. This will be a wonderful & awesome time for the Church but it will be a terrorfying time for the non-believers.

Are you ready?

I am ready

1 Thessalonians 4:13-17: "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Citizens Police Academy

Last night I attended the first of 12 classes for the Citizen's Police Academy at the Southaven Police Department.

Citizens Police Academy

The citizens police academy is a program to reach out to our community to familiarize citizens with the inner workings of the Southaven Police Department and emergency services through lectures and tours of facilities and divisions within our agency and others. This course provides citizens the ability to understand how to further contribute to their community and work with the Southaven Police Department more effectively in the prevention of crime.

Upon completion of this class: I receive a certificate of completion & I will be eligible to join the V.I.P. progam. Listed below is information about the V.I.P. program


About VIPS

Origin of the Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) Program

President George W. Bush created USA Freedom Corps (USAFC) to build on the countless acts of service, sacrifice, and generosity that followed September 11. When he announced USAFC in his 2002 State of the Union address, he called on all Americans to serve a cause greater than themselves.

As a White House office, USAFC is charged with building a culture of service, citizenship, and responsibility in America. USAFC promotes and expands volunteer service in America by partnering with national service programs, working to strengthen the nonprofit sector, recognizing volunteers, and helping to connect individuals with volunteer opportunities.

Citizen Corps, a vital component of USAFC, was created to help coordinate volunteer activities to make communities safer, stronger, and better prepared to respond to any emergency situation. It provides opportunities for people to participate in a range of measures to make their families, their homes, and their communities safer from threats of crime, terrorism, and disasters of all kinds.

Citizen Corps partner programs build on the successful efforts in place in many communities around the country to prevent crime and respond to emergencies. Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) is one of five Citizen Corps partner programs. The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) manages and implements the VIPS Program in partnership with, and on behalf of, the White House Office of the USA Freedom Corps and the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.

VIPS Goals and Objectives

The VIPS Program provides support and resources for agencies interested in developing or enhancing a volunteer program and for citizens who wish to volunteer their time and skills with a community law enforcement agency. The program’s ultimate goal is to enhance the capacity of state and local law enforcement to utilize volunteers.

Through this program, the VIPS staff seeks to

  • learn about promising practices being used in existing VIPS programs and share this information with law enforcement agencies that want to expand their programs,
  • increase the use of volunteers in existing programs,
  • help citizens learn about and become involved in VIPS programs in their communities, and
  • help agencies without volunteer programs get them started.

VIPS Resources

The foundation of VIPS is this Web site, which serves as a gateway to information for law enforcement agencies and citizens interested in law enforcement volunteer programs.

This Web site offers

  • a directory summarizing volunteer opportunities available in law enforcement agencies across the country. The directory is a searchable resource for agencies that are looking to network and contact programs offering similar or desired volunteer roles. It also serves as a resource for citizens searching for volunteer opportunities.
  • a library of sample documents and forms, including policies and procedures, training materials, and screening forms.
  • Volunteer Programs: Enhancing Public Safety by Leveraging Resources, a resource guide for law enforcement agencies interested in starting a volunteer program.
  • VIPS in Focus, a publications series that builds on this resource guide, addressing specific elements and issues related to law enforcement volunteer programs.
  • a model policy developed in collaboration with IACP’s National Law Enforcement Policy Center.
  • regional one-day regular training and advanced training providing attendees with the knowledge and skills necessary to implement a law enforcement volunteer program.
  • a technical assistance program to help local agencies determine their volunteer needs and design programs that will effectively meet those needs.
  • a mentor program that pairs new law enforcement volunteer coordinators in need of support with experienced coordinators.
  • educational videos.
  • VIPS Info, a monthly electronic newsletter that provides news and events about the VIPS Program and law enforcement volunteer activities across the country.
  • VIPS in the News, a bimonthly electronic newsletter recognizing law enforcement volunteer programs that have recently been in the news.
  • VIPS to VIPS, a moderated online discussion group for law enforcement volunteer program leaders to share information and ideas.

Volunteers in Policing

Helping our community through volunteerism

Contact Information:

Southaven Police Department

8691 Northwest Dr.

Southaven, MS 38671

662-342-3581 or 662-393-8652

jwheeler@southaven.org



WHAT IS VIP?
VIP stands for Volunteering in Policing. It is a program that allows residents of our community to assist the Southaven Police Department.
HOW DOES VIP DIFFER FROM OTHER VOLUNTEER PROGRAMS?
VIP is different from other volunteer programs because volunteers work in and for the Southaven Police Department enhancing a wide variety of police activities.
HOW CAN I JOIN?
You must be 21 and complete the Southaven Police Department’s Citizen
Police Academy. The Academy is a ten week course that starts the last Monday in Feburary of every year. Applications are available in the front office of the Southaven Police Department.
ARE BACKGROUND / SECURITY CHECKS REQUIRED TO DO VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES?
Yes. The Southaven Police Department will conduct an extensive
background check.
WHAT KIND OF VOLUNTEER SKILLS ARE NEEDED?
Any and all skills are welcome.
WHAT TRAINING DO I NEED?
The officers of the Southaven Police Department will teach any and
all classes needed for any
type of volunteering.
WHO WILL SUPERVISE ME?
Southaven Police officers assigned to the Public Relations Division by Chief W. T. Long are assigned the task to see that the agenda of the VIPs is carried out.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES AND EVENTS
Assist with the Annual Southaven Easter Egg Hunt
Assist with the Christmas Parade
Visit Nursing Homes
Work the Fox News Most Wanted
Assist with various City Functions and other civic events during the year
Bake monthly birthday cakes for Southaven Police officers and personnel.
Help with emergency call-outs.
Assist with the Halloween Haunted House.
Assist with annual Veteran’s Day Luncheon.
Assist with Officer Appreciation Day.
Works various events at Snowden Grove Park
Help answer phones and greet visitors to the Southaven Police Dept.
Breakfast with Santa
Many cook-outs and tours to various places.
Work at Southaven’s Southern Lights at Central Park
Fingerprinting at schools and other requested areas.