Tuesday, July 8, 2008

On the Newsstands July 7, 2008

Art: "The Colors of Freedom Don't Run" by Gaynell Parker

I thought I would continue my thoughts on patriotism and our flag. I started with the idea that we've heard different versions of what the red, white and blue stand for. I think everyone has heard the red is for the blood, etc. Well, in looking it up, I discovered that the initial founding fathers really had no reason for their choice. It came later on -- but they discussed the colors in the seal.

"Their significance was explained by Charles Thompson, Secretary of the Continental Congress, and included in the book "Our Flag," published in 1989: White represents purity and innocence; red represents hardiness and valor; and blue represents vigilance, perseverance, and justice." They also had this: "Also this from a book about the flag published in 1977 by the House of Representatives... -- Read More

Books: "House of Secrets by Jeffrey S. Savage" by Alison Palmer

I recently had the pleasure of re-reading a favorite book of mine: House of Secrets by Jeffery S. Savage.

This is the first book in the Shandra Covington mystery series, and I love it. If you’re a mystery fan, but hate having to skip whole pages because of negative content, then these books are for you. The main character is LDS and there are a few cultural references. Aside from that it’s just a clean and exciting novel that anyone could pick up and appreciate. There are no covert or not-so-covert gospel messages and valuable insights, well except maybe: don’t go into houses that have been standing empty for years, there’s probably a good reason no one else is dumb enough to go inside. -- Read More

Home & Family: "Americans Don't Understand Their Enemies" by Muriel Sluyter

Do Americans remember these words? "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door."

How about these? "... America! America! May God thy gold refine, Till all success be nobleness, And every gain divine ... God shed His grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea."

Compare those with the German national anthem, "Deutschland, Deutschland, Über Alles!" Translated straight across, those words mean, "Germany, Germany, Over All." Americans think that means the same as "Girls rule!" or maybe "We’re The Greatest!" Not so. They refer to the royal, racial right of Germany to rule the entirety of humanity. When they say "rule," they actually mean "rule." -- Read More

Jewelry: "Ruby - Birthstone of Love" by Nichole Giles

A good friend, and fellow blogger, Rachelle Christensen, emailed me a few weeks ago, suggesting that I blog about birthstones and flowers of the month. I loved her ideas, and appreciate her suggestion. And since July is my birth month, I’ve decided this is a great time to get started.

The July birthstone is the beautiful ruby. Historically, rubies have represented love and passion, heat and power. Some cultures believed the hard, bright stones had magical qualities. Rubies were worn by royalty to protect them from evil. Some claimed a stone would grow darker when danger was near, and return to its original color once the danger had passed—as long as it was in the hands of the rightful owner. -- Read More

LDS Department Store/Gardening & Landscaping: "Sage - A Versatile Herb" by Heather Justesen

Salvia officinalis, also known as common garden sage, is one of the standard herbs I always keep in my cupboard, and better yet, in my garden beds. It is a woody, low-growing shrub that is evergreen in most areas. It prefers a light, sandy soil that is alkalai. It doesn’t like to be very wet, and tolerates drought conditions once it’s well established. It likes to be trimmed back in the late spring to keep it compact, and the plants need to be replaced every four years or so.

Sage can be started from seed or from cuttings, but doesn’t do well in really cold winters it’s first year, so if you are going to use cuttings, start them in May or take them indoors the first winter. This plant loves sunny areas, but will do well in dappled shade as well. -- Read More

LDS Department Store/Preparedness: "Remember the Popcorn" by Barbara Salsbury

You may have staples and basics in your preparedness pantry. Well, on that same shelf should be another kind of grain that must be considered a priority. That would be popcorn. Yes, popcorn! In our experiences of living through extremely difficult times, one of the things that bailed us out of the doldrums in many instances was popcorn. From now on make popcorn one of those items that must be included when you think of the Morale Boosters you will need for comfort food – no matter what time or season of year it may be!

Did you know that popcorn can be part of a meal as well as a snack? A good-for-you lunch is a good-sized bowl of popcorn and a bowl of canned peaches, or some other fruit. In fact, the Wellness Encyclopedia of Food and Nutrition, (University of California at Berkeley, Random House, 1992) details how nutritional popcorn really is. -- Read More

LDS Outlets/Dutch Oven: "Putting My Pots into Practice" by Keith Fisher

I know I promised to talk about Dutch ovens today, but it’s been one of those weeks when you end up with too many tasks and not enough time to do them. Now I’m camping cooking a pile of good food. I came back down the canyon in the middle of the night in order to post my blog. I need to hurry back to make waffles and eggs. Later, I’m making baked beans and bratwurst.

I realize that most of you won't read this til Monday but some of you will read it today, July 4, I suggest you make your holiday great. Invite your friends and family to eat it what you cook, and take a bow when they start the applause. Since I’m taking a little break, I’m going to show a few Dutch oven dishes I’ve encountered over the years. I cooked some of them. Click on the picture to see a biger one. -- Read More

LDS Outlets/Humor: "The Evil Beasts of Summer" by C.L. Beck

The evil beasts of summer have returned.

No, I’m not talking about the kids that ring your doorbell just as you climb into bed—and then run, laughing, into the night—I’m talking about the real deal. Bugs.

The other day my husband, Russ, ran into the house shouting, “There’s an ant invasion. Where’s the bug spray?” -- Read More

Missionary: "Conversations in Cyberspace" by Rebecca Talley

"There are conversations going on about the Church constantly. Those conversations will continue whether or not we choose to participate in them. But we cannot stand on the sidelines while others, including our critics, attempt to define what the Church teaches. While some conversations have audiences in the thousands or even millions, most are much, much smaller. But all conversations have an impact on those who participate in them. Perceptions of the Church are established one conversation at a time." Elder M. Russell Ballard

Back in the day (as my son likes to say) these conversations took place face-to-face or through letters. When I was a teenager, we didn’t have the internet so we didn’t have MySpace, Facebook, Chatting or Instant Messaging. The opportunity to communicate has now exploded and boundaries that existed some years back no longer exist. -- Read More

New Neighbors: "4th of July, Nauvoo Style" by Cheri Crane

Last year at this same time I happened to be in Nauvoo, Illinois. My husband and I had traveled there with his mother and stepfather. According to the journal entry I made on July 4, 2007, we began the day by going for a wagon ride around Nauvoo Old Town. Naturally I took lots of pictures which I will share throughout this blog.

The shot below is a picture of the Nauvoo Temple that I took while sitting on a wooden seat in the wagon. This is a great way to see the restored buildings and homes that make up the heart of Nauvoo. The grove of trees you can see below is gorgeous. Our tour guide told us that this is where the Prophet Joseph Smith would often preach to the gathered Saints. -- Read More

Scrapbooking: "15-Minute Miracle" by Kim Thompson

Author Ernest Hemingway wrote, "Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is."

A lot of us who scrapbook are Mothers with young children still at home. This equates to a desperate shortage of time and energy. Of course, most of us also started scrapbooking to preserve the memories of those same children who are draining all of our time and energy. Although it would be ideal, most of us don't have hours to devote to our scrapbooking hobby every day. But, can you find 15 minutes?

The following is a list of necessary scrapbooking tasks that can be accomplished when you just have a snippet of time: -- Read More

Services: "Patty Kubeja Writes From Iraq on July 4th" by Liz Adair

My guest blogger today is Patty Kubeja. Last Fourth of July she was Relief Society President in Kent, WA. This Fourth she's in Iraq on a year's deployment, leaving behind a husband and their blended four children living in their newly-built family home.

Patty says: It is already the 4th of July here, and my morning is just starting...that of course includes talking to my honey. I have a hand-head phone so I can multi task--talk and type. It was worth the $100 so I don't get a kink in my neck. -- Read More

Sports & Recreation: "Bowling, Not Yardwork" by Steve Christensen

Summertime has finally arrived. This is most kid’s favorite time of year. No school. The days are longer and hotter. They can go to the pool, sleep in, play with their friends. For most men this is not our favorite time of year. Football has ended, the NBA Finals are wrapping up, there is yard work to do, and the kids are driving their Mom crazy so we husbands have to find creative ways to make them feel better, (like actually listening). What is a man to do during the summer to avoid losing his mind?

Football and Basketball may be over, but the one sport that will continue all year long and comes on every Saturday afternoon is……Bowling. Okay, I don’t know for sure if it still comes on every Saturday afternoon or not, but I do remember as a 10 year old kid watching this “sport” on late Saturday afternoons when my chores and yard work were done and it was too hot to go outside. -- Read More

Sports & Recreation/Movies: "Magical Movie Moments: Neverwas" by Linda Scanlan

Neverwas is a movie that I believe has passed unnoticed by the public...a sleeper as it were. Released in 2006 this movie is "For everyone who wishes Narnia and Oz were real places. Though children everywhere read about the land of Neverwas, it only exists in the imaginations of the young and the book's author (Nick Nolte). But when the writer's son, a psychiatrist (Aaron Eckahart), begins to look into his father's life, he realizes that Neverwas may be more real than he thought. While working at an institution where his father lived, he discovers a man (IAN MCKELLEN) whose ramblings paint a picture of the fantasy world. Fantasy and reality collide in NEVERWAS, also starring Brittany Murphy and Academy Award winners Jessica Lange and William Hurt." (Source)

Zach (Aaron Eckahart) is a psychiatrist who has his own issues. In the institution he is working for, he comes across Gabriel (Ian McKellen) who won't talk with anyone. Zach is able to talk with him only because he is his father's son. -- Read More

Join the Neighborhood Newsletter . . . Subscriptions are free and joining is easy. Just by signing up and maintaining your subscription to receive the yourLDSneighborhood.com newsletter, you become eligible for our "Thank You" prizes. Our dozens of giveaways range from a trip for two to China, to iPods® (each with a $50 gift certificate for LDS music), cruises, and more.

Learn about our amazing monthly, quarterly, and annual giveaways by clicking here.