Wreath Making

Another annual community tradition, wreath making in the basement of the Jantzi’s house. I tried to make door handle bell hangers and ornament hangers for our hall oak stair case. I hope they all work out well. Here is Diane Winterboer working hard on one wreath, though it ended up she did not have enough ribbon for this form. Diane is in her Moose Munch mode. Happy

Post Thanksgiving

People are off rushing to the stores on Black Friday. I got my new IPhone which I like a lot. Now I have to get it set up with all the apps that I like. Made some apple caramel cinnamon rolls which went over like crazy. Yummy! We got to see the little Ryan man this afternoon and the photo is from the new IPhone 5s.

Thanksgiving and War

A quiet day of Thanksgiving for just the two of us. We made an awesome meal with plenty of food though toned down on the fats and sugars for a change. We watch some TV, a lot of the Godfather series since it was featured. At the same time, I can across this article on this peaceful day which contemplates “Why should we study war?” Why indeed. Let us hope we can avoid such a calamity though with the diplomatic furbelows and misunderstandings of the current times, I don’t know if I hold my breath for peace. We shall see.

Interesting Factoid

Here is an interesting little tidbit about the second-in-command of a submarine who saved the world on October 27, 1962. It was the Cuban Missile Crisis and the world was on edge. The wrong move would have set many areas on fire.

“50 years ago, at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, second-in-command Vasilli Arkhipov of the Soviet submarine B-59 refused to agree with his Captain’s order to launch nuclear torpedoes against US warships and setting off what might well have been a terminal superpower nuclear war.”

Read the rest here.


Today I did my 5th presentation in a row to the first year class at the CVM of Oregon State University. I spend 2 hours discussing cats, taking a medical history and doing a physical exam, carrier training, and handling of cats. I think it has turned into a decent presentation though I wish I had more time to spend working with them and their cats that they bring to the class. The students are really a good group of young people and each class seems so different in make up.

Conspiracy Theories Debunked

I downloaded a few days ago the book, “A Cruel and Shocking Act: The Secret History of the Kennedy Assassination”. It seems to be starting off as a well-written read and interesting from its perspective of information lost or suppressed. Much of this information lost has fed into the development of conspiracy theories. Here is an article that debunks the most persistent of those theories. From that article.........

“Then, one day, I looked up the footnotes in those books, most of them leading me to the multivolume hearings of the Warren Commission. I was shocked. The authors had taken witnesses’ statements out of context, distorted them beyond recognition, and in some cases cherry-picked passages that seemed to back their theories while ignoring testimony that didn’t. It was my first brush with intellectual dishonesty.

There’s no space to launch a full rebuttal of the conspiracy theorists. (It took 1,632 pages for Vincent Bugliosi to do that in his 2007 book Reclaiming History.) But it’s worth recounting the conspiracy buffs’ arguments that I found most persuasive—and why they collapse under scrutiny.”

The Zombie Effect

Every day it seems that the Democrats sink lower in what they do to support or promote their policies and beliefs. One has to credit them with being able to stick together trying to deliver the product or at least keep it from collapsing. Or maybe it isn’t something on the credit side. I read an article today by Mark Baisley where he talks about The Zombie Effect that spreads through the Democratic Party and its loyal supporters. An example follows of what he is talking about and is in a humorous vein incorporating the great Bob Hope.

This Zombie Effect was first documented in the 1940’s film The Ghost Breakers. Richard Carlson’s character describes the undead as, “It’s worse than horrible because a zombie has no will of his own. You see them sometimes walking around blindly with dead eyes, following orders, not knowing what they do, not caring.” In immediate response, Bob Hope quips, “You mean like Democrats?” (See the brief film clip by clicking here).

Enjoy the show!

No Can Opener

One of the hot shows on cable TV is Doomsday Preppers. Scott seems to like to follow the survivalist mode and similar websites, blogs, and TV shows. They do have a bit of interesting and useful information. One that I found fun to watch and have not tried is how to open a can when you do not have a can opener (though I hope you can find a cement block and strong fingers). You can watch how to do it here.

Losing JFK 50 Years Ago

Here is my recollection. I was in 6th grade when someone from the school office came in to tell our teacher that President Kennedy had died. My teacher, Mrs. Walton, then shared the news with us. The reaction was much the same as for many all over the country and world............shock and incredible sadness and loss. I remember riding the school bus and being one of the few who supported Kennedy against Nixon when talking about the election with other students. Yes, we were interested even in those young years. I remember all the concerns about his Catholicism. They held the anniversary memorials today at Dealey Plaza in Dallas and at Arlington Cemetery near Washington DC.

Books (and articles) have been written and will continue to be so written. One recent article that was interesting about Oswald and his interest in Castro can be found here. Another article discussing the connection the author had with President Kennedy and also Lee Harvey Oswald is found here. Her book is called Marina and Lee and should be a good book to obtain.


The Generals

The article to be found here is a review of the book, The Generals: American Military Command from World War II to Today, by Thomas E. Ricks. The review appears to be critical of the book and its delivery of this information. The review itself is an interesting read.

“The central claim of The Generals, military journalist Thomas Ricks's assault on post-World War II American military history, is that once upon a time the U.S. Army won because poor generals got fired. Since then, Army generals stopped getting fired so much, and now the Army does not win wars.”

Cougars in America

No, I don’t mean the “Older Women who seek younger men” type of cougars. The four-legged cat like type of cougars. We have a number of them in Linn County and even on and around our property. A cougar killed a goat at the home on the property next door. They had a recent map online showing how cougars have spread from their usual habitat out West to the middle and eastern parts of the country. You can see the map here. Cougars can range over many miles

150th Anniversary of Gettysburg Address

Today is the 150th Anniversary of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. This is the greatest speech ever given in my opinion. Evidently, not so much in contemporary times since a newspaper of a neighboring town just apologized this year for writing an editorial that the speech would not amount to anything and Lincoln should apologize for giving it and withdraw it. Now it is enshrined in the Lincoln Memorial. It would have been a dream come true if Bob and I could have been there for the ceremony.

Old New York City Photos

Someone had a lot of fun finding and putting together a number of photos from the Gilded Age in New York City. It is filled with photos of the Vanderbilts and their mansions plus other wealthy people from that time. 5th Avenue in New York must have been something to see in those days though most of the American people would not have had the stature to come close to these homes other than by imagination. One can check out the article here.

Vaccine Slippage

There are increasing reports of outbreaks in the companion animal field of canine distemper, canine parvo, and feline panleukopenia due to lack of vaccine coverage in locations of higher animal density. The same issue is occurring in the human arena due to people’s “fears” of vaccines. There are now outbreaks of whooping cough and measles that can be deadly to the very young and even susceptible adults. Disease we long thought were very diminished or gone from the scene. A discussion of the issue can be found here.

Brother's Photo Re-creations

Two brothers have given their mother a wonderful gift by re-creating photos by posing at their current older age in a similar place and manner to childhood photos. It is a hoot and would have been fun to do. Not only in the similar vein of posing but also in being able to visit the same locations as before. Some places have changed in exterior look, such as in the buildings. It just shows what a little fun and ingenuity can do.

A Better Look

Politico has published a couple of articles that give a behind the scenes look at the President’s interactions with his cabinet and many of the major general in the armed forces. The articles do not paint a good picture and more a grim one in my estimation. It is disturbing to hear that approximately 200 generals have been released by this administration. They are trying to remake the military in the manner they desire, not as a ready and fighting force I am afraid. Political correctness is taking its role, front and center. I pray we are not attacked because I fear for who will be left to respond.

The Cenotaph

One example of the simplicity and power of a war memorial is described in the article about the Cenotaph. A description of how the Cenotaph came to be follows.........

“With the signing of the peace treaty at Versailles in 1919, the War Cabinet, led by Prime Minister David Lloyd George, planned Peace Day. This was to be a festive celebration of the end of the carnage. The government Office of Works, under the direction of Alfred Mond, asked Edwin Lutyens to design a temporary memorial to be erected in Whitehall, along the route of a massive victory parade of the allied troops through central London. Lutyens, who had made his mark designing handsome country homes, was the architect of the new capitol of the British Raj in New Delhi, a commission that had catapulted him to international fame.

Just two weeks after hearing from Mond, Lutyens had a plan in hand, one deeply rooted in the classical past, not only in form but in function. The monument was to be a cenotaph, a structure incorporating an empty tomb, often built to memorialize a missing warrior. Constructed of wood and plaster, Lutyens's four-sided composition, which ascended through a series of subtle setbacks toward a summit capped by a sarcophagus, was ready for the Peace Day victory parade of July 19, 1919.”

States' Names

If you want to know more about where your state’s name comes from (etymologies), you can check here and here.
In the case of Oregon.................

The origin of the state name is uncertain, but "Oregon" might have been derived from a 1715 French map which refers to the Wisconsin River as "Ouaricon-sint."

Another opinion is that the name "Oregon" stems from an English army officer's proposal for a trip in 1765, in which he refers to "the River called by the Indians Ouragon." Oregon was admitted as the 33rd state on February 14, 1859.

Revolutionary Writings

Thomas Paine (whose name was actually Pain) was an Englishman who came to adopt the fledgling United States as his home. His writings stirred the emotions of average people and patriot leaders. His works helped lead the way to revolution. To read more about him and “Common Sense”, check here.

Armistice Day

World War I is the war that set the table for many of the remaining wars of the 20th Century. Some may argue with that premise, I firmly believe it. We still are living with the consequences of the issues leading up to the War and the fall out for what happened during and after the war. So to read more about the beginning of the end and what happened at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, you can find information here. We now refer to this day as Veteran’s Day. It’s roots are based in the tragedy engulfing Europe from 1914 to 1918.


In the Ukraine, they refer to it as the Holodomor. It refers to the time in the 1930s when Stalin decided to bring the Ukraine to heal under the Soviet yoke by starving much of the population. I have mentioned this in previous blogs when talking about the books Bloodlands and Savage Continent. Millions of people were starved, often to death, to achieve a better system overall for the Soviet totalitarian regime. Do we possibly have a milder form of that going on now with “We know what health care system is better for you than the horrible plan you had and didn’t know it” routine we hear on TV lately about Obamacare. A discussion about the Holodomor is found here.

Six Months

Ryan is 6 months old today. David, Renee, Nicolas, and Ryan all came out to visit and have dinner with us. It was great to see everyone’s smiling faces. Ryan has a cute baby’s smile that lights up when he sees you. He is sitting up more though I sense he would like to stand more than that. I hear he is rolling over a lot. He gets frustrated when he cannot get his shoulder out of the way to do it more often. It takes so much work!


November 9 is the 75th anniversary of the infamous Kristallnacht action in Germany against the Jews. One senses that a similar action may not be so far from happening in parts of the world now, especially in Germany. If the anti-Israel fervor gets any worse in the United States, it could be in our future too. An interesting article about 75 years ago today can be found here.

President as Machiavelli?

What is effectual truth and is this what the President uses when he speaks to Americans?

In the essay, Mansfield discusses the Machiavellian discovery of “effectual truth.” What is effectual truth? In his 2007 Jefferson lecture, Mansfield put it this way: For Machiavelli, the effectual truth is the “truth shown in the outcome of his thought. The truth of words is in the result they produce or, more likely, fail to produce.” Consequences matter most. “Deeds are sovereign: When confronted by a necessity, Machiavelli advises, do not worry about justice, but act and the words to justify your action will come to you afterward.”

More about this can be found in this Washington Free Beacon article.

New Cousins

We saved an image from the other Thayer’s Facebook page of the other Grandpa Bob holding two cousins new to each other. This is a great photo with Ryan, PaPa Bob Lewis, and Jeremiah at the family gathering in Seattle this last weekend. I am sure Bob is in 7th Heaven holding these grandkids.

Government Cronyism

As Obamacare rolls out and looking at the effects on both Bob and i, it is distressing to read articles about all the lobbying, interest groups, and back room deals that went into getting this law passed and forced on us. An article that gives one just a taste of what this entailed is found here.

How To View Freedom

A great link to podcasts by David Horowitz on topics and how the Democrats keep their people and message together and how the Republicans must go to a message that is said over and over again that they support freedom for the individual. We do not want to become lemmings that only do what the Pied Piper says we should do.

Remembering Mom

The anniversary of my mother’s birth. We all still miss her very much. Too bad she is not here to laugh with us and keep us on the straight and narrow. She would certainly have her thoughts about all the politics and negative discourse between people of different beliefs.


The Cargo Culture

Can we build big and dream for the modern future? We seem to be stuck in small time machinations. The government is into wasting time on micromanaging people and policies that they can’t see building a bigger, more modern future. We most likely will sink to a third world country stature. A better description of how we are slipping away from that uniqueness and ability to perform to the highest level and achieve greatness. From the Sultanknish blog, some very good insight.

That's modernity. It isn't glamorous. You can see it in black and white photos of men working on old planes. You can see it in the eyes of the astronauts who first went to the moon. You can read it in the workings of the men who built the longest suspension bridges, laid undersea cables and watched their world change. They were moderns and their time is done. They have left behind savages with cell phones who make decent tinkerers, but whose ability to collaborate falls apart in large groups.

The difference between savages and civilized men isn't that savages are dumb and civilized people are smart. Savages can individually be quite clever within their parameters and civilized folk can be quite stupid. It's the ability to extend that intelligence in groups that makes for a civilization.


Tigger Tigers

More lectures and learning. I have gotten to see and laugh with a number of old friends from the cat practice networking days. I participated in the silent auction and bought a nice fleecy blanket with Tigger tigers on it for grandsons to have for Christmas. Hate to spend the money though well worth it to help the Foundation and something for the kiddos. I attended a nice dinner and awards ceremony in the evening. It is fun to watch the live auction at the end. Dr. French was a hilarious auctioneer. What a performer!


More Foundation Work

The day started off with a 6:30 a.m. meeting of the board for the ABVP Foundation. Good discussion ensued though some how zip, zam, zowey, and swoosh I was elected as Treasurer of the Foundation. Some more responsibilities on my shoulders. A full day of lectures and even more info on item writing in the evening. I had fun later in the evening by eating sweet potato fries and having fun chatting with Glenn Olah and Jim Olson.
RapidWeaver Icon

Made in RapidWeaver