Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I ate cookies today. Guilt free!
I took my cat to the vet today - check up.
I chipped a tooth.
I'm going to the dentist tomorrow.
My co-worker is on vacation allllll next week.
We're suppose to have no rain this weekend.
I'm touring the San Francisco Mint this saturday.
I'm going on a hike sunday.

That's it for now.

Weather Changes

I know, we need the rain around here, and I'm happy to let it rain...during the week but, it sure does feel great to have a sunny afternoon, and MAN-O-MAN are the clouds fabulous during the winter!



A week, or so, ago! Snow on the hills in Fremont!

Friday, January 2, 2009

First Walk of 2009

I didn't intend to take a walk today, or take any pictures for that matter, but as I was washing dishes in front of my kitchen window, I looked up and it was so clear and bright, after a raining first half of the day, I decided, "what the hell". Dried my hands, got my camera, all my layers for the cold, and off I went. I drove out to south side of the Dumbarton Bridge, and here are the results:

First Walk of 2008 (1-2-08)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


A toddler lost in the Virginia woods was back home safe Sunday thanks to two puppies who kept him warm through a harrowing night of freezing temperatures.

Jaylynn Thorpe, 3, wandered away from his baby-sitter at 4 p.m. Friday and was missing for 21 hours as hundreds of friends, family and law enforcement officials searched for him in the thick woods of Halifax County, fearing the worst.

"The only thing we wanted to do was just keep searching until we found him," Halifax County Sheriff Stanley Noblin told reporters.

Jaylynn's frantic family knew time was not on its side.

"We didn't forget the issue that 17 degrees was almost unbearable," said his father, James Thorpe.

"People all over the State of Virginia was down there looking for that child. For a while there, one time, I didn't know whether they would find him or not," said the child's grandmother and guardian, Katherine Elliot.

Officials said the lost little boy and the two family puppies wandered up to a mile in the dark, even across a highway, but it wasn't until Saturday afternoon that members of the search team found him sitting by a tree, the two puppies nestled against him.

The little boy didn't say anything, according to rescue team member Jerry Gentry, but instead "just opened his arms up like, 'I'm ready to go.'"

"When I first saw him, he was like, 'Momma, I got cold. I slept in the woods last night. The puppies kept me warm.' He told me that ... the dogs slept up against him. And I'm sure the body heat kept him warm," said his mother, Sarah Ingram.

Billie Jo Roach, another member of the search party that found the boy, said the puppies refused to leave his side.

As the child was placed in an ambulance to be taken to a local hospital for examination, "The puppies were watching where he went.

"Where he went, they went," Roach said.

As word went out that the child was alive and well, family members cheered and cried for joy.

"Praise the Lord! Welcome home, Jaylynn!" yelled his aunt, Amy Zimmerman.

Close to 300 people from North Carolina and Virginia joined in the search to find Jaylynn.

"I love you! God bless you," Ingram told the rescue teams.

"I think I just said, 'Thank you Lord' ... for us to have another chance!" said the child's father.

The boy spent Saturday night under observation at Halifax Regional Hospital and chowed down on a double cheeseburger, a hot dog, strawberry ice cream and French fries.

Meanwhile, the furry heroes, their tails wagging, were rewarded with food.

"I definitely call this a miracle," said Noblin.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Honesty & Integrity on the Streets of New York City

At the end of November New York saw a bank robbery. One that went wrong the good way.

Walking up to a teller a man demanded money. She gave him a little over $1000. As he was leaving the bank the teller yelled “Stop him! He just robbed the bank!”

Technicians repairing the bank’s ATM chased the guy and caught him on 38th street.

As they shoved him on the hood of a car the money scattered all about.

When police officers arrived at the scene, pedestrians walked up to them and bank employees present, handing over bills they had picked up.

“Even in the bad economy, all $1,082 that had been scattered before the police arrived was recovered in full.”
Paul J. Browne, chief police spokesman

Secret Santas in 3 states spread cheer, $100 bills

I'm tired of bad news, so I'm only going to post good news for the next.....until I can once again handle "reality" :-). So, here's some good news from the world, and may you all have plenty of good news in your lives as well...

ST. LOUIS – At a suburban Goodwill store on Friday, Theresa Settles selected a large, black comforter to warm her family until she can raise the money to turn the gas heat back on. A petite woman approached, her face obscured by dark sunglasses and a wrapped winter scarf, and handed Settles two $100 bills stamped with the words "secret Santa." "The only condition," she said, "is that you do something nice for someone. Pass it on."

"I will," Settles said, the only words she could get out of her mouth.

The secret Santa was a protege of Kansas City's undercover gift giver, Larry Stewart, who died of cancer nearly two years ago. Stewart roamed city streets each December doling out $100 bills to anyone who looked like they might need a lift.

Before his death in January 2007, Stewart told a friend how much he would miss his 26 years of anonymous streetside giving, during which he gave away about $1.3 million. Stewart, from the city suburb of Lee's Summit, made millions in cable television and long-distance telephone service.

The friend promised Stewart he would be a secret Santa the next year. "He squeezed my hand and that was it," said the Kansas City Santa, who would say only that he was an area businessman and investor. "I honored a promise."

Two secret Santas, one from the Kansas City area and the other from the St. Louis area, descended on thrift stores, a health clinic, convenience store and small auto repair shop to dole out $20,000 in $100 bills, hugs and words of encouragement to unsuspecting souls in need.

In this economy, they weren't hard to find.

Cynthia Brown, 40, was laid off three weeks ago from her food service job. Santa found her at the St. Louis County health clinic and gave her $100, exactly what she had asked to borrow from her mother a night ago to buy food.

"I have three daughters, and I can't get unemployment yet. I was down in food," she said.

Leotta Burbank, 50, of West Frankfurt, Ill., was at a thrift store Friday to buy decorations for her sister-in-law's room at a St. Louis hospice, where she is dying of pancreatic cancer.

When Santa gave her money, Burbank collapsed into his arms and wouldn't stop hugging him.

"God provides," she said. "This is real emotional for me."

For the secret Santas, it's not about keeping Stewart's memory alive as much as the meaning behind his legacy.

"It's not about the man, it's not about the money, it's about the message," the Kansas City Santa said. "Anyone can be a secret Santa with a kind word, gesture, a helping hand."

He said the money is given without judgment, but on the condition that the receiver pass along a kindness to someone else. Stewart began his holiday tradition at a restaurant in December 1979, after he had just been fired. He gave a waitress $20 and told her to keep the change and was struck by her gratitude.

Stewart also gave money to community causes in Kansas City and his hometown of Bruce, Miss.

The secret Santas want to expand their operation to every state, but so far only nine givers operate in Charlotte, N.C., Phoenix, St. Louis and Kansas City. They plan to start giving in Detroit this holiday season.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

With A Little Help From My Friends:

Yesterday, my friends helped me spend some money.

I mentioned, via email, I was looking into getting some trekking/walking poles to my friend Anit and he went crazy. He'd purchased a great pair from a discount website and LOVED them. He gave me the website and advised I keep checking to see if they were selling them again. An hour later I get a call from Anit, in New York, saying "Laura! Laura! Go onto the site! They're selling them right now, and they're going fast"! Oh my god, Me, spent money quickly!? Can you say, "outside the box"? So I put my faith in Anit and bought them. And get this, they were mailed out the same day! Wow, that was fast. Anit also advised I take a trip to REI and get "trained" on the poles. Trained on poles? Ok, again, I'm going to trust the guy. I'll keep you posted.

Then, last night, my friends, Satarupa and Regina met me over at Costco, in Redwood City, where we went through almost every pair of glasses they sell...ok, so I'm exaggerating... a little, to find me a pair of new eye glasses, to replace my broken pair (thank goodness for super glue) :-) It took us a while, but we finally settled on a pair. I swear, I could NOT have done it without them!!!! I tried making up my mind all by my little lonesome the day before, but it was not happening. I called my two friends and they came to my rescue! Yeaaaaaaa Satarupa, and Regina!!!!!!

"Thank you"! "Thank you"! "Thank you"! Regina, Satarupa and Anit!