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Fun Flower Facts: Zinnia

Zinnias are brightly coloured flowers belonging to the Asteraceae family, where other members include asters, daisies, and sunflowers. Flowers vary in size, with diameters ranging from one inch to seven inches. They also vary in form; they might have a single, semi-double or double layers of petals. The zinnia is a hot-climate plant native to South America and southwestern United States. Zinnias are popular fresh cut flowers and are valued for their long stems and brightly-coloured blooms. Cut flowers should last ...

Fun Facts: Wedding Flower Traditions and Customs

In China and Japan, the colour white represents death and funerals, so it’s avoided in weddings. Red is the preferred colour; roses and peonies are popular wedding flowers. Greeks include ivy in their bouquets because it represents endless love and tenacity. In Middle Eastern cultures, the herb artemisia is included in the bridal bouquet to help new couples overcome the tough and bitter times of the marriage. Swedish and Danish grooms have been known to fasten pungent herbs like chives, garlic and rosemary ...

How to Celebrate Boss’s Day!

Today is national boss’s day! Believe it or not, this is not a holiday created  by some corporate card company.  It has been around since 1958-long before a certain card company starting selling Boss’s Day cards!  Boss’s day is a holiday celebrated on October 16 in Canada, the USA and other countries from around the world. It has been recognized as a day for employees to recognize their bosses  for being reasonable and fair. Bosses would appreciate being recognized as much ...

Luminescent Flowers will be available soon!

Luminescent Blooms created with Galassia Flowers spray. (photo credit: bioconst.com) An Australian Professor, Mark Tester and his team of scientists have made the worlds first formula which makes flora appear to be luminescent. Released to the world only yesterday, the company Galassia Flowers is already receiving requests from floral companies around the globe. Prof. Tester said the formula makes flowers “look like a galaxy of stars” and that “they look like glistening jewels”. Looking at these pictures I have to agree! In order ...

7 Ways to Celebrate Father’s Day

This Sunday June 16th, 2013 is Father’s Day! Take the time to honour and celebrate your father or father figure in your life, as we often take them for granted. Now is the time to show him how much you care and appreciate all that he has done for you. Treat him to something special, but you don’t have to go out of your way to spend a ton of money. It’s the thought that counts, after all! Here are some ...

Inspiration: Embracing The F Word…

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all.” J.K. Rowling Inspiration: Embracing The F Word... What is our attitude towards failure? Have we recently failed at something and are still kicking ourself? Do we look around and wonder where we went wrong because everyone else is doing great? Do we avoid trying new things because we are afraid to fail? Regardless of how we answer the questions, the ...

How Cold Is Cold?

I am taking a bit of a break from the Germany Travelogue to complain about the weather.  Isn't that what everyone does?  Isn't that one of our Constitutional Rights?  Of course it is...there is some very fine print somewhere mixed in the First Amendment about weather related free speech. And...dare I say that no one is exempt because there is nary a place on earth (or at least in the continental United States)  that has perfect weather all the time?  Admittedly ...

Open Letter to the Makers of Elf on the Shelf

To Whom It May Concern: Thank you for creating the Elf on the Shelf franchise of books, cookies, plush dolls, DVDs…etc. which enable parents such as my wife and me the privilege of paying $29.95 to deceive our children. The Story of the Elf As you well know, your fabricated story of the Elf asserts that he/she appears in the child’s home between Thanksgiving and Christmas as a behavioral scout for Saint Nick, to keep an eagle eye on the children for the “naughty ...

5 Reasons To Go On A Mission Trip With Your Family

Stolpe family in Guatemala Early this month, our family traveled to Guatemala to serve the orphans and widows in and around the village of Santo Domingo Xenacoj. Deciding to go in the first place was a pretty significant leap of faith. As a father and husband, did I think we would be safe in a strange land removed from many of the luxuries we currently enjoy? Did I really want to spend my vacation time working instead of relaxing somewhere? How were we going to ...

Fabulous Finds: Amazing Sisal

What could tequila and a sisal floor rug possibly have in common? I know. There are so many great punch lines that could follow, but there’s actually a legitimate answer. They both have the same origin: the Agave plant. Tigridia, also known as tiger flower or shell flower, is a genus of about 30 bulbous plants that belong to the Iridaceae family, which includes the iris, crocosmia, crocus, and freesia. Sisal is highly durable and strong, and has been used in the making of twine ...

The Success Principles: #8- chapter review

I'm reading the latest book from best-selling author Jack Canfield, titled The Success Principles, which comprise 64 different lessons that Canfield has learned during the past three decades as as a highly-successful entrepreneur, instructor, best-selling author and keynote speaker. My goal is to write a summary review for each chapter, until I'm finished with the book. You can access the most recent past summary here: The Success Principle #7 -Unleash the Power of Goal Setting Chapter 8: Chunk It Down The advice that Canfield delivers in this chapter is by ...

A Killer Case of the Hickeys

Update: Grandma Chatterbox had her surgery yesterday and all appears to be well. The doctors had to remove a foot of damaged bowel and my mother claims they dropped her on the floor after surgery while transferring her to the gurney for the trip to the recovery room. The doctors say this never happened and that drugs can play games with your imagination. Mom believes there’s a conspiracy afoot and she’s demanding an investigation—sounds like the old Mom, full of ...

Perhaps You’re Fiddling With the Wrong Thing

Our programmable thermostat Earlier this summer we had a stretch of several days of hot, humid weather laced with heat indexes of more than 100 degrees. The builders of our home installed two separate air conditioning (AC) condenser units in our home – one in the basement for our first floor comfort and the other in our attic for our bedrooms. During the peak of the hot spell, the unit upstairs stopped working. We have a programmable thermostat for each AC system [see photo ...

3 Traits We Correct in Our Kids But Ignore in Ourselves

One of the things I love about my family is that we take regular walks together around our neighborhood. It’s been during these walkabouts over the years that I’ve noticed three traits in our kids that my wife and I have tried to correct when they manifest. Distraction Anybody who has walked with a toddler knows that they want to stop and look at every stone, sidewalk crack, bug and dried worm that might catch their little eye. These constant side excursions often turn ...

The Kid Got to Me

When she told me that she wanted to write books I knew that she had suffered. Only the scarred would dare to write, to make sense of, or at least to look at, the entrails ...

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Guest Post: Bulb Flower Gardens

The fondest experience for any gardener is the sight of the first spring flowers peeking through the last snow of winter. These spring flowers have been long seen as a sign of new life. Whether ...

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Defining Moment 1985

One strong arm robbery (no weapons) turned into 2 when the take on the first was too light. The 2nd got us caught. I was driving, and we were about to pull away but a ...

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Freebie Friday: Free April 2014 Desktop Calendar Wallpaper!

While for some of us it’s hard to believe, Spring really is on it’s way! Here in Edmonton we are looking forward to double digit temps next week! Exciting! To help celebrate Springs arrival here are ...

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Acknowledging the pain of others

People like me, who write about their experiences of child sexual abuse, do not intentionally set out to cause other people pain. Unfortunately, however, we do. When we are lucky enough to have people ...

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Artist’s Studio

My new artist’s studio is is finally setup! Your artist’s studio is the hub of your creative endeavors. It is your home away from home. Often it is the home of your heart. An ...

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Haiku: The First Day Of Spring…

Today is Thursday March 20th, the first, official day of spring! The buds start to peak through; crocuses, forget-me-nots, blossoming cherry trees herald the awakening of a new day. Spring has sprung and we can ...

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Afterlife of the Viking

Shevata leaned back on the armrest of the obsidian throne. “Zermon, no more savages!” “I’ll remind you that you released the last one?” Zermon rolled his eyes looking over a short man brought before ...

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Run Like Hell!

Humans can be porcupinish in nature. You get too close and their adrenaline kicks in, triggering a panicky spray of barbed quills, homing in on your most vulnerable places, usually the face and eyes. And why ...

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A Good Master And A Greater Revelation

Jason Clark is a singer/songwriter, author, speaker, and pastor. Jason’s passion is to know the love of God more each day. He lives to see a generation step into their identity as sons and daughters ...

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Peer support through blogging

One of my reasons for returning to study is that I would like to set up an organisation whose sole purpose is peer support for adults (both women and men) who experienced abuse as a ...

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7 Questions With an Author: Frank Viola

Frank is a highly-sought speaker and an incredibly prolific writer with 16 published books so far. His web blog frankviola.org is one of the Top 10 Christian blogs on the Internet. His latest work is a ...

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3200 Years Old – 247 feet tall and still growing!

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This giant Sequoia is not only awe inspiring, it’s still growing! At the rate of one cubic meter per year he is one of the fastest growing trees in the world, despite his great age. There is only one place on the entire planet where giant sequoias grow; the Sierra Nevadas mountain range in California, found only on the western slope 5000-8000 feet above sea level. …

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“Oh my God the weather is frightful and oh my God”

“Oh my God the weather is frightful and oh my God” “Oh my God the weather is frightful and oh my God”. The coming mid terms. “Oh my God the weather is frightful and oh my God” Hate beats weakness. Dislike beats “Oh my God the weather is frightful and oh my God” Mean beats “Oh my God …

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No dishonor to the ‘merican people

No dishonor to the ‘merican people We trust in the ‘merican people … in their wisdom … in their good common sense … in their abilities to be rock solid down home folks who can divine the rightness of cause and immutable nature of facts as we go forward and stand for Freedom. We stand for Freedom …

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Just buy them. They are just dumb as rocks.

Just buy them. They are just dumb as rocks. We trust in the ‘merican people … in their wisdom … in their good common sense … in their abilities to be rock solid down home folks who can divine the rightness of cause and immutable nature of facts as we go forward and stand for Freedom. We …

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International Women’s Day: Inspiring Change

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Today is International Women’s Day (IWD), also known as International Working Women’s Day and the theme for this year is – Inspiring Change. The premise for the 2014 IWD theme is that we still need to not only champion the social, political and economic achievements of women, but also to continue to fight for women’s rights and inspire change globally …

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…. Ahh, to suffer from authoritarian envy

…. Ahh, to suffer from authoritarian envy Hickory dickory dock Authoritarians up the clock Authoritarians here ….. domestic enemies they be Authoritarians there …… can-do lethal strong men who know how to act, lead, be the shirtless strong man of my dreams… Authoritarians, if possible, everywhere ….. our kind …. we see through this prism well …. we suffer from …

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