AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc. – I love it!*

Vol. 4, No.26, Monday, October 7th, 2013

TITLE: “AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc.- I love it!* ”


Some call it fall others autumn – whatever you call it – it’s officially here!  This is why my book of the week is “Awesome Autumn” [Hardcover] by Bruce Goldstone (Author, Photographer) (Note: This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)


Time: Autumn is the time when days are getting shorter and night fall comes earlier.

Weather: Autumn is the intermediary season between summer and winter.  It is when you can expect to have dry and windy weather.  The days can be warm and sunny, while the evenings are usually cool.  It creates a mellow, tranquil atmosphere. Towards the end of autumn and the beginning of winter, the weather gets colder and rainy. That’s why some certain animals hibernate and some birds fly south.

Family: Last weekend, we went apple picking with my grandchildren, my daughters and the family.  The working farm had a tractor ride and animals to view. There was even a maze and a fun slide. We later gathered for brunch in a restaurant.  The drive there gave us an opportunity to see long strips of land that were ablaze with beautiful fall colors.  It was the perfect day with sunny skies and mild weather.  We enjoyed ourselves tremendously.

Dates on the calendar: Fall is when summer vacation is over and one settles down for hard work on the job. It can also be associated with the beginning of the school year.  TV also marks this season. Networks and channels present their fall lineup, launching new programs and broadcasting new episodes of returning shows, starting their new season. I am also told that football is big at this time.

Festivities: Autumn is the time when many crops are ready – this brings on the harvest, which is the reason for the Thanksgiving celebrations. With straw plentiful, scarecrows are a common sight in the fields. This brings to mind Halloween.

THE AUTHOR: Bruce Goldstone

Bruce Goldstone likes autumn so much that he enjoys two each year. The first is in May in Buenos Aires and the second is in October in New York City.  He is an expert in school curriculums. He has been in educational publishing for over 20 years.



Several are:

THE BOOK: Awesome Autumn [Hardcover] by Bruce Goldstone (Author, Photographer)

Goldstone likes autumn. He uses vivid photographs, clear explanations and classic craft ideas to explain why he likes this colourful and festive season.  You might have known that you like fall – now you will be able to give more reasons.


The change of seasons is a joy to behold.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That autumn is one of the seasons that I love the most. With the changing colors of the leaves, I find it magical.
  • That autumn weather can be ideal.  After a long hot summer, it can be very welcoming.  I feel more energetic with the cooler temps.
  • That some people see autumn as a melancholy season … you know, with summer over and winter fast arriving. But this season brings out the best in people who appreciate the simple things in life.
  • That when it comes to TV, I enjoy Castle, Person of Interest, to name a few.
  • That it’s also time to join the gym!

The Point

Life is good and autumn life is special. Take advantage of this wonderful time and enjoy what it has to offer.


Everyone should:

  1. Go outdoors – it’s ideal weather: warm days and cool nights to:
    1. Go for a walk in the park;
    2. Breathe the fresh, crisp air;
    3. Have fun picking fruit/vegetables apples, pumpkins etc.;
    4. Enjoy the taste of fresh fruits and vegetables.
  2. Appreciating the beautiful scenery. Take photos – it’s a vivid picturesque season.
  3. Winterize your house and strive for a toasty warm, inviting environment.
  4. Start up your TV and check out the new shows and episodes.
  5. Close down your country home, if you have one.
  6. Register at a gym and begin a physical fitness regime. Indeed, there are gym classes starting in the fall – join one that’s appealing.
  7. Get ready for the harvest feasts by eating moderately beforehand.
  8. Have fun at a Halloween party – but remember a costume … .

Summer has come and gone. Fall has fallen. Winter is not far behind. Season’s greetings!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “autumn”; etc.

“Autumn, often known as fall in the US and Canada,[1] is one of the four temperate seasons. Autumn marks the transition from summer into winter, in September (Northern Hemisphere) or March (Southern Hemisphere) when the arrival of night becomes noticeably earlier.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


The word autumn comes from the Old French word autompne (automne in modern French), and was later normalised to the original Latin word autumnus.[8] There are rare examples of its use as early as the 12th century, but it became common by the 16th century.

The alternative word fall for the season traces its origins to old Germanic languages. The exact derivation is unclear, with the Old English fiæll or feallan and the Old Norse fall all being possible candidates. However, these words all have the meaning “to fall from a height” and are clearly derived either from a common root or from each other. The term came to denote the season in 16th century England, a contraction of Middle English expressions like “fall of the leaf” and “fall of the year”.[11]

Association with the transition from warm to cold weather, and its related status as the season of the primary harvest, has dominated its themes and popular images. In Western cultures, personifications of autumn are usually pretty, well-fed females adorned with fruits, vegetables and grains that ripen at this time.

Autumn is associated with the Halloween season (influenced by Samhain, a Celtic autumn festival),[13] and with it a widespread marketing campaign that promotes it, in the US.

Television stations and networks, particularly in North America, traditionally begin their regular seasons in autumn, with new series and new episodes of existing series debuting mostly during late September (series that debut outside the fall season are usually known as midseason replacements). A sweeps period takes place in November to measure Nielsen Ratings.

Autumn, particularly in most parts of the US, also has a strong association with the start of a new school year, particularly for children in primary and secondary education. “Back to School” advertising and preparations usually occurs in the weeks leading to the start of the fall season.

Although colour change in leaves occurs wherever deciduous trees are found, coloured autumn foliage is noted in various regions of the world: most of North America, Eastern Asia (including China, Korea, and Japan), Europe, parts of Australia and New Zealand’s South Island.

Eastern Canada and New England are famous for their autumnal foliage,[15][16] and this attracts major tourism (worth billions of U.S. dollars) for the regions.[17][18] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: How to fall into more activity as autumn arrives

“Back-to-school is a time to get back to routines and focus on school and work, but the change in activity and cooling weather often results in a more sedentary lifestyle.

We all know that being active is good for us. Not only does it keep us healthier, activity can also reduce stress and it helps us adjust to shorter hours of daylight and to our new fall schedules. To help achieve your fitness goals and stay motivated, start with these simple steps:

Park further away or get off the bus or subway a stop or two earlier and walk the rest of the way.

Invite your spouse and kids to take a walk with you after dinner and use the time to reconnect and get a bit of fresh air before settling down to homework and other chores. Exercise has the additional benefit of helping to improve sleep.

Encourage your kids to get involved in athletics at school. School sports are a great way to build friendships, a sense of teamwork and inject fun into an active lifestyle.

Encourage activity breaks between studying. Even a short break to stretch will help your child focus and maintain energy levels

Make sure you have the right gear to keep everyone motivated. Comfortable, well-fitting sportswear and athletic shoes will make every activity more enjoyable. Look for brands with a reputation for style and durability. For example, Sears tells us they carry many national brands like Nike and Reebok, and it is the exclusive Canadian retailer for Converse apparel. And while you’re there, it’s easy to pick up those crucial back-to-school basics such as back packs, lunchboxes, clothes and uniforms.”

More information is available online at

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Autumn lawn care for a water-wise spring

(NC) “With months of gardening comes months of water use. During summer, in fact, municipal water requirements usually double.

It doesn’t take a green thumb to save water, however. Take a look at a few things you can do now, in the autumn, to lower your costs and to protect this natural resource:

Plant and fertilize into the fall. Cool-season grasses like fescue, rye, and bluegrass flourish in the later months, and will help to thicken up your lawn early in the springtime, reducing the amount of watering necessary as your lawn comes back to life.

Replace struggling plants with hardier, drought-tolerant species. These substitutions will reduce your watering needs, especially during times of water scarcity.

Consider the efficiency of your automatic irrigation system. Does the layout of the system avoid wastefully watering paved surfaces? Can you set up your system to run once or twice a week instead of every other day?

The RBC Blue Water Project is a global commitment to help provide access to drinkable, swimmable, fishable water, now and for future generations. More urban water conservation tips can be found at” www,

*TM/© Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on October 7th, 2013 Comments Off on AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc. – I love it!*

HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*

Vol. 4, No.25, Monday September 30, 2013

TITLE: “HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*”


As you  know, with my recent move, I’ve been lately thinking a lot about my house.  This got me thinking about the homeless.  With the changing of seasons and the coming of the cold weather, this problem becomes more urgent.  Therefore my book of the week if “Homelessness:  The Making and Unmaking of a Crisis”  [Paperback] by Jack Layton (Author).  (Note:  This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)

You could blame schizophrenia or affective disorders for homelessness, but that’s not always the case.  Other reasons could be: a break-up, being evicted from an apartment, release from prison, etc. Another is the impact of a natural disaster. A good example is when people lost their homes due to floods in Quebec and Manitoba or the ice storm of 1998. A youth thrown out of the family home might be called homeless.

On a different level, homelessness is not always a person without a home.  Sometimes, it could be a person who loses his or her job and has to move in with family or with friends. To a degree, such a person could be considered homeless.  But, most of the time, this is only temporary.

In the past, the homeless were mostly men, but there has been a growing number of women and children among the homeless population.  According to surveys, one in 10 homeless people attempt suicide every year.  In the very cold winters and very hot summers, some homeless people die.

My heart opens up for the homeless. I can’t imagine not having a home to go to … a roof over my head, with a warm bed and food in the refrigerator.  During my bad times, my family was there for me and I will never forget that.

Story in my neighborhood: I remember seeing a homeless man circulating near a shopping centre in my neighborhood. He wore torn and shabby clothing and his shoes were broken.  A friend of mine bought him a pair of new shoes.  He would be seen pushing a carriage full of his belongings.  It broke my heart.  Apparently, the gentleman was a person with a high profile career.  A tragic car accident, killing his wife and daughter, affected him mentally.  He was unable to function and became a homeless person.  Many people were generous towards him.  Recently I heard that a good Samaritan helped him get his life back.  He is now employed and has a home.  Of course, not all stories about the homeless have a happy ending.

THE AUTHOR: Jack Layton

Most Canadians know of and liked the late Jack Layton.  Layton was born in 1950 in Montreal, Quebec and grew up in Hudson, a small nearby town.  He went to McGill University and received his Bachelors and his Masters degrees.  He also received a PhD from York University.  His thesis considered the attempts by countries to control the flow of multinational capital. For 20 years, he served as city councillor in Toronto.

In January 2003, he became leader of the federal NDP, a Canadian political party.  In the 2004 federal election, he won election as the MP in Toronto-Danforth by more than one million votes. In May 2005 in exchange for NDP support in the minority Parliament, Layton negotiated an amendment to the government’s budget.  The negotiation was to delay $4.6 billion in corporate tax cuts.  In this way, he helped Canada to lower education costs, cut pollution, build affordable housing, improve transit, increase foreign aid. He even argued for new protection for pensions in the case of employer bankruptcies.  In his last federal election, he won a break through, especially in Quebec, earning opposition status for his party. However, he served only a short time as opposition leader. On August 8, 2011, Jack Layton, died at 61 after a struggle with cancer. He was well- respected for his honesty, commitment and passion to make the world a better place. His grace will be remembered.



Here are several examples:

THE BOOK:  Homelessness:  The Making and Unmaking of a Crisis [Paperback] by Jack Layton (Author)

In the past, some might have thought that homelessness only involved those suffering from mental illness or substance abuse. But we now know that this is incorrect. There are numerous reasons.

But today, homeless is far worse than we once thought. In a land of plentiful, it’s hard to understand and accept homelessness.  We all ask: “What should we do?” Jack Layton, an expert and outspoken activist on housing issues, saw homelessness as a social problem –indeed a social crisis. The book “Homelessness” gives you a view, an outlook and proactive solutions.


Homelessness is a bad place to be.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That many people don’t have a helping hand through a rough time.  For some people it’s just for a short period of time.  And for others, when they hit rock bottom, it’s much longer. Sometimes, they never recover.
  • That I know that the cold nights will be here soon. The homeless might spend their days in shopping centers and subway stations. In the nighttime, they look to shelters, but there may not be a vacancy.
  • That I have a concern that homeless people might use donated money to buy alcohol, cigarettes and drugs.  I’ve heard that some people give food instead of money. Since I consider these habits as unhealthy, I say:  “Good idea!”

The Point

We need to eliminate or at least, reduce homelessness.


Everyone should:

1.  Lose the stereotype that homeless people are boozers, drug addicts or wanderers. They are           people just like you and me.

2. Differentiate the different types of homelessness: (a) Chronic homelessness – this is someone        has been homeless for a long time; (b) Homelessness from uncontrollable circumstances –            this is when one loses a job or is enduring a difficult divorce, etc.; or it’s where there is a flood      or fire; (c) Temporary homelessness – this is where it arises from mental disorders or drug              abuse;

3. Note that homelessness is in part a symptom of: (a) Lack of low income housing; and (b)                  Lower unemployment rate;

4. Be aware that homelessness is caused by one or more of the following: :

(a) Break-up in a relationship

(b) Being evicted from your apartment

(c) Youth thrown out of a family home

(d) Out of prison

(e) Mental disorders

(f) Runaway youths

5.  Recognize that a growing number of women and children are becoming homeless;

6.  Ask yourself how you can render assistance to the homeless;

7. Give pocket change to the needy, particularly the homeless; and when you can; write a check      to local missions and organizations serving the homeless;

8. Donate food and clothes … whatever you can;

9. Help a family member in decline;

10. Inform a homeless person that there are services available. Refer him or her to social assistance, government offices, organizations etc. Help him or her to get into the offered programs;

11.  Rally your fellow citizens and politicians to do more, particularly, the enhancement of services, increase of overnight beds,  the building of more social housing, etc.

Home is where the heart is! Let’s do more!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

PREVIEW (Tentatively scheduled for Monday, Oct. 7th 2013) : Some know it as Fall. Others call it Autumn  Whatever the name, it’s coming. I’ll share some of my thoughts.

PREVIEW (Tentatively scheduled for Monday, Oct. 14th 2013) : This time of the year means that TV networks roll out their new programs and the start of the season for our old shows. I will tell you about my favorites. Maybe you’ll agree or maybe you won’t. Let’s see.

P.S. Big News: There are more changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “homelessness”; “homelessness in Canada”; etc.

“Homelessness describes the condition of people without a regular dwelling. People who are homeless are most often unable to acquire and maintain regular, safe, secure, and adequate housing, or lack “fixed, regular, and adequate night-time residence.[1] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

Homelessness in Canada has grown in size and complexity in recent years.[1] While historically known as a crisis only of urban centres such as Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, and Montreal, the increasing incidence of homelessness in the suburbs is necessitating new services and resources.[2] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –



“The data presented here are from the Current Population Survey (CPS), 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC), the source of official poverty estimates. The CPS ASEC is a sample survey of approximately 100,000 household nationwide. These data reflect conditions in calendar year 2012.

  • In 2012, the official poverty rate was 15.0 percent. There were 46.5 million people in poverty.
  • For the second consecutive year, neither the official poverty rate nor the number of people in poverty at the national level were statistically different from the previous year’s estimates.
  • The 2012 poverty rate was 2.5 percentage points higher than in 2007, the year before the most recent recession.
  • In 2012, the poverty rate for people living in the West was statistically lower than the 2011 estimate.
  • For most groups, the number of people in poverty did not show a statistically significant change. However, between 2011 and 2012, the number of people in poverty did increase for people aged 65 and older, people living in the South, and people living outside metropolitan statistical areas.
  • The poverty rate in 2012 for chil­dren under age 18 was 21.8 per­cent. The poverty rate for people aged 18 to 64 was 13.7 percent, while the rate for people aged 65 and older was 9.1 percent. None of these poverty rates were statistically different from their 2011 estimates.1


1 Since unrelated individuals under 15 are excluded from the poverty universe, there are 468,000 fewer children in the poverty universe than in the total civilian noninstitutionalized population.” (Source: US Census Bureau –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Protect your home against winter’s wrath

“(NC) As Canadians, we are fortunate to experience nature’s splendour through all four seasons. However, extra steps need to be taken to protect your home against damage that could be incurred with cold temperatures, ice and snow.

Preparing your home for old man winter’s arrival will help you to protect your investment, says Royal LePage broker Carla Bouchard. A few simple steps can restore your peace of mind and have your home winter-ready. Bouchard recommends the following tips for winter home preparation: 1. Clean out your gutters and install gutter guards. Reduce the chance of an ice dam by removing debris from your gutters. Ice dams form when indoor heat melts the ice on your roof. If there is nowhere for the melted ice to flow, it will collect in your gutters and re-freeze, causing potential water damage when warmer temperatures return. The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation also recommends using electrical de-icing cables or low-corrosion chemical de-icers. 2. Use a chimney sweep service at least once per year. Many Canadians enjoy a crackling fire on cold winter nights. Chimney sweep services remove soot, blockages and any accumulating creosote, a highly flammable substance, from your chimney, thereby reducing the potential for a chimney fire. 3. Protect pipes located near the exterior of your home. Frozen pipes are one of the most common problems caused by freezing temperatures. It is important to ensure that pipes running through your garage or other exterior areas are well insulated. If you plan to be away, set your thermostat at 65 degrees Fahrenheit and open cupboards under your sinks to allow heat to flow through. You can find more information at

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: A checklist for homeowners as summer gives way to fall and winter

“The fierce winds and fluctuating temperatures of an unpredictable Canadian winter put a strain on every household. There’s little wonder that autumn becomes a frenzy of renovations, upgrades and last-minute projects. But before any of those changes take place, an equally important step in winter preparation is the completion of any end-of-summer maintenance.

According to RONA experts, Transitioning into winter isn’t just about getting ready for the cold season. It’s about wrapping up the summer and getting organized. Remember your end-of-summer chores to keep your house beautifully preserved for the next warm season.

Here is your checklist for three key areas of your home:

Doors and windows:

Keep your home’s heating system in good shape and your heating bill down by addressing any leaks and holes that create drafts in your home.

Replace the weather-stripping and caulking where needed around doors and windows as these are key areas for heat loss during the winter months.

For older doors and windows, consider upgrading to energy efficient options that will create a tighter seal. If you have an older home, a professional can do a blow-test that may be beneficial for helping to identify problem areas.

Run water through your gutters to see if it comes smoothly through the downspouts. Any clogs should be removed before the water backs up and causes damage. Leaks and cracks can be repaired with a fresh bead of caulk. Also, check each piece to make sure it is secured tightly to the building.


Remove, drain and store all outdoor garden hoses.

Turn off all exterior spigots so that water left in the pipes does not freeze and break the pipes.

Consider replacing spigots with freeze-proof faucets, particularly if your home is older.

Wrap pipes in foam to insulate them.


Don’t forget to clean and maintain tools such as lawnmowers and other motorized tools. Some lawnmowers have a new feature on the hood where you can attach either a garden hose or a pressure-washer so that it will clean the clippings off from underneath the hood.

Take time to ensure that your household is equipped with sufficient shovels and de-icing salt. You will be happy you did it before that first big snowfall.

If all you can remember from last winter is back pains from all the shovelling, consider getting a snowblower. To maintain the snowblower, test it to see if it runs, check spark plugs, replace gas filters, and take it to a professional for a tune-up if necessary.

By taking these proactive steps, you’ll reduce your risk of repairs in the below-freezing weather. The key is to get them done before the warm weather disappears into a hazy summer memory.”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 30th, 2013 Comments Off on HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*

LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs, etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*

Vol. 4, No.24, Monday September 23, 2013

TITLE: “LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs,  etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*”


With the home remodeling coming to an end, it’s just about the time to install the chandeliers.  It got me thinking about lighting, light fixtures/lamps and chandeliers. My book of the week isPerfect Lighting: Inspiring Solutions for Every Room” by [Paperback] Sally Storey (Author). (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and gardens.)


Lighting: The lighting in a residence can create an atmosphere. Lights let you see what you are doing and where you are going. There are all kinds of light fixtures and lamps. I like those of the Tiffany type. They have great detail and they’re charming. But I really like chandeliers.  They dress up a room. Chandeliers are made of glass or crystal.

Tiffany fixtures/lamps: I like Tiffany fixtures.  There were two in the kitchen of my new house. They weren’t expensive, but I liked the design and earth colors. The bigger one was in the sitting area and the smaller one was in the cooking space. But they were dirty. I scrubbed them up and down. Now sparkling clean, they hang in my new kitchen. You see, the rich gold and brown tones made a deep impression on me. Now, the Tiffany fixtures give the kitchen a warm and pleasant atmosphere. Since I needed a fixture over my sink area, I visited a local home renovation centre and found one with three Tiffany-like mini lights. I chose it since it was similar to the two already up. I have received compliments over my choice.  I also have Tiffany lamps in my bedroom on the night stands. They are small and delicate. I love them!

Crystal chandeliers: Many years ago we bought a big pear-shaped crystal chandelier.  We had it installed in our two-storey house which dropped from the upper floor into the main floor and through a winding stairway.  It was absolutely beautiful.  It created a dynamic effect.  On opening the front door, the sparkling chandelier was the main attraction.  When lit, its high-quality crystal appeared into a rainbow of colors.  When I moved into a smaller house, I took the chandelier with me in the hope that someday I would use it again.  That day came.  But there are some crystal parts that are missing. They’re difficult to find and the price-by-the-piece is high. Also, there was some damage from storage. Although it was in a big carton, I stored it in the basement cold room. Due to the moisture, the fixture tree rusted over the years. We first scrubbed the surface; and I am now having it restored. I am missing some crytals. From my restoration research, I discovered that the quality of crystal chandeliers is not the same.  There is a price range.

THE AUTHOR: Sally Storey

Sally Storey is a full fledged lighting/design expert. She is a director of John Cullen Lighting and Lighting Design International. She designs lighting schemes throughout the world. She is an author as well as a speaker at interior design events: Daily Telegraph/House and Garden Fair, Decorex, House and Garden magazine meetings.  She is a lecturer at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) conferences. She has been a judge at prestigious events: National Lighting Design Awards, the Society of Garden Designers Awards, the FX Design Awards and the Homes & Gardens Classic Design Awards. She has appeared on numerous television programmes.



Several are:

THE BOOK: Perfect Lighting: Inspiring Solutions for Every Room [Paperback] by Sally Storey (Author)

This book tells how to effectively use lighting and create atmosphere throughout a house.  You will find checklists and detailed explanations of how the effect is achieved and what the author uses. If lighting is on your mind, this is the reference book for you!


Lighting and light fixtures and lamps help make a house a home.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That lighting:
    • Makes an are functional
    • Contributes to a decorative first impression
    • Can set a mood
    • Has the power to transform an area giving it the theme you want.
  • That each room has specific lighting needs. For instance,
    • Kitchen lights should be bigger and sufficiently powerful and bright.
    • Bedroom lights should be smaller and lower. They should be soft – it’s calming. At the same time, they should also be bright enough to be able to read.
    • Hallway lights needs to be size appropriate.
  • That depending on your taste, lighting can add to the atmosphere you’re aiming for and pull everything together.
  • That lighting in a home can get expensive.
  • That chandeliers light up a room in a mesmerizing way, creating a luxurious atmosphere.
  • That chandeliers can definitely be a big expense. But good crystal chandeliers are available in smaller versions. Also there are good quality glass chandeliers – they can be a great substitute.
  • That lighting could be effective – it’s worth the effort to have proper fixtures.
  • That good quality lighting has always been a priority in my house.  It’s worth the cost.

The Point

Lighting is important. A chandelier is the way to embellish a home in an elegant way. It also contributes to a good first impression. I encourage everyone to consider this possibility. I also like Tiffany fixtures/lamps. I encourage you to consider these as well.


Everyone should:

  1. Think about lighting when making architectural plans.
  2. Figure out the furniture placement and ensure that lights fit the use.
  3. Employ good quality lighting so as to enhance a visual first impression.
  4. Choose the appropriate size light fixture for its location in a residence.
  5. Consider chandeliers for the hallway, dining area, etc.
  6. Invest money into good lighting – it’s a sound investment.
  7. Take a pause about buying a cheap fixture; although it may look good, it may not work properly and securely or have durability.
  8. Buy energy efficient bulbs – there are also bulbs with low watts, but high brightness.
  9. Remember the flashlight in case there is a power outage.

I’m pleased that I shone some light on the subject of lighting. I hope you now see the light in a different way!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “chandelier”; “fixture”; etc.

“A chandelier is a decorative ceiling-mounted light fixture. Chandeliers are often ornate, and normally use lamps. Crystal Chandeliers has more or less complex arrays of crystal prisms to illuminate a room with refracted light.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

“A light fixture (US English), light fitting (UK English), or luminaire is an electrical device used to create artificial light by use of an electric lamp.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“The earliest candle chandeliers were used by the wealthy in medieval times. They were generally wooden crosses, with spikes on which candles were secured. They were hoisted to a suitable height, hooked on a rope or chain.

More complex and elaborate chandeliers continued to be developed throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, but the widespread introduction of gas and electricity had devalued the chandelier’s appeal as a status symbol.

From the 15th century, more complex forms of chandeliers, based on ring or crown designs, became popular decorative features in palaces and homes of nobility, clergy and merchants. Its high cost made the chandelier a symbol of luxury and status.

By the early 18th century, ornate castormolu forms with long, curved arms and many candles were in the homes of many in the growing merchant class

By the 1890s, with the appearance of electric light, some chandeliers used both gas and electricity.

More complex and elaborate chandeliers continued to be developed throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, but the widespread introduction of gas and electricity had devalued the chandelier’s appeal as a status symbol.

Toward the end of the 20th century, chandeliers were often used as a decorative focal points for rooms, and often did not illuminate.”(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Smart renovations add value to your home

“Every homeowner has been told that renovations pay off in the long run. But it is hard to know which ones and how much. In recent years real estate giants have been crunching the numbers and working out formulas to help property owners wrap their heads around what they’re getting out of their renovation investments.

Amongst such smart reno investments as kitchens, bathrooms, fresh paint and flooring is the installation of a fireplace. According to the Remax Return on Reno Index, the installation of a fireplace generates an estimated 11 percent return on investment.

Advancements in flame technology and auxiliary heating have made incorporating a fireplace into any dwelling an easily, viable option. Dimplex, an innovative leader in this field, tells us that electric units offer realistic flame technology to give your home a quick update. With a sleek design and optional heat output, these units operate for pennies an hour, without the need for a gas line. Utilizing electric units in design and reno planning also allows for greater flexibility in room placement and does not require a builder permit or a post-installation inspection.

Smart realistic flame technology is offered in an array of décor-friendly styles from mantels and wall-mounts to television console units. The added benefit of on/off heat control lets owners utilize the flame-only option to add ambiance to a room in any season, with or without heat output. Perhaps, one of the most appealing aspects of an electric unit is its easy installation, the simple assembly and plug-and-play design allows for easy set-up.

In addition to fireplaces, other big impact renovations included the installation of a soaker bath, which can generate a 56 percent greater return on investment than the average renovation (think personal spa); fresh paint generated a 29 percent return; and sprucing up curb appeal netted 7 percent.”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2:Decor Trends 2014: Decorate with themes that inspire you

“Photo caption 1: Seaside Harmony gives you the colours of sun, surf, and sand. A cool palette of blue-green and white, plus the warm peach with white, revives the spirit. Design elements: minimal furnishings, sculptured driftwood, and sea glass. Behr Paint Colours: Ocean Liner (T14-1), South Peach (T14-2), Miami Weiss (T14-3), Edgewater (T14-4) and Sky Blue (T14-5).

Photo caption 2: Urban Alternative applies neutrals like olive and burnt orange to showcase skills and craftsmanship in wood, metal and stone work. The atmosphere is modest, relaxed and attainable. Design elements: distressed wood treatments, raw metal finishes, filament lightbulbs and earthbound shades. Behr Paint Colours: Boho (T14-6), Offbeat (T14-7), Film Fest (T14-8), Hipsterfication (T14-9) and Coffee Bar (T14-10).

Photo caption 3: Grand Reign captures the imagination with a sense of opulence, romance and mystery. Use luxurious detail, colour, and ornamentation. Choose a rich, masculine look, or delicate and feminine. Design elements: jewelled colours, layered textiles, guilded frames, and decorative mouldings. Behr Paint Colours: Imperial Jewel (T14-11), Coronation (T14-12), Grand Soirée (T14-13), Cloisonné Blue (T14-12) and Minuet Rose (T14-15).

Photo caption 4: Natural Avocation expresses respect for the things that intrigue you. In your favourite room, give any curious mind a rich colour experience in passions like botany, geology, archaeology and celestial events. Design elements: weathered maps, antique books, geological artifacts and illustrations of birds, plants and insects. Behr Paint Colours: Arboretum (T14-16), Archivist (T14-17), New Shoot (T14-18), Sunday Afternoon (T14-19) and Amaryllis (T14-20).

(NC) What do grand mansions, ocean liners, natural science and industrial metals have to do with decorating? Experts predict that the latest home decor trends will demonstrate one or more of these special interests.

Indeed, as home fashion begins to reveal the newest looks for 2014, it is the influence of history, hobbies and the impact of nature that will be swaying our choices in paint colour, furniture pieces, and decorative art.

It’s an exciting opportunity to express admiration for many aspects of the world around us, says Erika Woelfel, the director of colour for Behr Paints. And because it’s a truly personal touch, this trend is creating some of the most beautiful rooms to date. Our company is launching four eye-catching themes with twenty brand new paint colours for 2014. They are Seaside Harmony, Urban Alternative, Grand Reign, and Natural Avocation and each one gives the do-it-yourselfer easy tools to showcase the people, places, and things that most intrigue them.

Woelfel points out the highlights of each theme:

Seaside Harmony is the open look of modern resort chic, where the colours of sun, surf, and sand come together in a relaxing mix. The cool palette of blue-green and white soothe the senses; a warm peach and white revives the spirit. The design elements for Seaside Harmony include minimal furnishings, sculptured driftwood, and sea glass.

For Seaside Harmony, the colour recommendations are Ocean Liner (T14-1), South Peach (T14-2), Miami Weiss (T14-3), Edgewater (T14-4), and Sky Blue (T14-5).

Urban Alternative, Woelfel continued, features inviting neutrals, especially olive and burnt orange:

This style is inspired by time-honoured skills and craftsmanship in wood, metal, and stone work. It is the natural evolution of the ‘industrial modern’ decor into something that feels more modest, relaxed and attainable. The design elements for Urban Alternative include distressed wood treatments, raw metal finishes, filament lightbulbs, and earthbound shades.

The new colours for 2014 in this theme are Boho (T14-6), Offbeat (T14-7), Film Fest (T14-8), Hipsterfication (T14-9), and Coffee Bar (T14-10).

Grand Reign is your invitation to distinctive opulence and romantic glamour:

Showcase a favourite room to reflect an exquisite residence from another place and time. Fascinate the eyes with luxurious detail, colour, and ornamentation. You can do it with a rich and masculine look, or make it delicate and feminine. The idea is to capture the imagination with a sense of romance and mystery. The design elements for Grand Reign include jewelled colours, layered textiles, guilded frames, and decorative mouldings.

Behr’s new colours for Grand Reign are Imperial Jewel (T14-11), Coronation (T14-12), Grand Soirée (T14-13), Cloisonné Blue (T14-14), and Minuet Rose (T14-15).

The Natural Avocation theme, says Woelfel, gives the spotlight to your hobby, adding a sophisticated touch to your home:

You might choose the world of science and nature expressed with local and exotic flora and fauna motifs. Botany, geology, archaeology and celestial events give the curious mind a rich experience one that especially comes alive with colour. The design elements include weathered maps, antique books, geological artifacts, plus bird, plant and insect illustrations.

The corresponding Behr colours are Arboretum (T14-16), Archivist (T14-17), New Shoot (T14-18), Sunday Afternoon (T14-19), and Amaryllis (T14-20).

More information on the latest colour trends is available at and the colour trend brochures are available at The Home Depot.“

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 Comments Off on LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs, etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*

PRESCHOOL: Age, teacher, books, songs, crafts, games, etc. – I think toddlers are so adorable!*

Vol. 4, No.23, Monday, September 16, 2013

TITLE: “PRESCHOOL: Age, teacher, books, songs, crafts, games, etc. – I think toddlers are so adorable!*”


With my grandson starting pre-school and joining my granddaughter, I thought of preschools for toddlers as a subject for my next blog. Children at an early age are a handful, but they’re so cute.  Therefore, my book of the week is “Brain Quest Workbook: Pre-K: A whole year of curriculum-based exercises and activities in one fun book!” [Paperback] by Liane Onish (Author).  (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on schooling and returning to class.)


My Childhood: When I was a very young child, I did not have the opportunity of preschool. I also did not attend a kindergarten.  In those days, our school boards did not offer kindergarten. I started school at grade 1. I also had a language challenge.  My parents were immigrants; so their English skill was not great. They had difficulty helping me with my homework.  They hired a young lady to assist me.  When it came to my brothers, I got the job of assisting them when they needed help.

My Daughters: While my daughters were growing up, it was important for me that they play with kids their own age.  Interacting with such children is necessary.  Since grandparents were babysitting my daughters all day, I realized that I had to do something. I wanted them to mingle with other children.  I arranged for my first daughter to go to a pre-school.  She loved it.  For my second daughter, I asked if there was an opening in a small babysitting group of children hosted at her house by a loving woman whom I knew well.  She said: “Yes!” My youngest loved it. So, both of my daughters were happy with their pre-school experience.

At the age of 5, my daughters attended kindergarten.  Due to pre-school, both of my daughters were well advanced.  This helped them to do well in kindergarten.  Later, I sat with them every evening to help them with their homework.

My Grandchildren: Before choosing a preschool for her eldest, my daughter researched carefully.  She looked for a preschool, fully licensed with high standards. It also had to have teachers who were well-trained and experienced. She found one! My granddaughter is now starting her 3rd year – she will start kindergarten next year. This year, my grandson, age 2-½, started pre-school.  He was soooooooooo excited.  He adjusted and fit in immediately. This can be explained by the fact that his sister also attends the same pre-school. This made a difference.  When I asked him about school, he replied that he had a new friend with black hair.  He’s so happy about his new surroundings.  Both my grandkids are now advanced for their age.

THE AUTHOR: Liane Onish

Liane Onish is a writer with credits of several books that have been published. She is also an editor of children’s books.  Several are:  Storytime Stickers:  Mr. Potato Head:  The Busy Day (Storytime Stickers), Brain Quest Workbook:  Grade 2, Brain Quest Workbook:  Pre-K, and (Pre-K) Get Ready for Pre-K with PB & J:  Concepts for Early Literacy (the Clear and Simple Workbooks).



Here’s some, to name a few:

·        Brain Quest Workbook: Pre-K: A whole year of curriculum-based exercises and activities in one fun book! by Liane Onish (Jul 9 2008)

·        Brain Quest Workbook: Grade 2: A whole year of curriculum-based exercises and activities in one fun book! by Liane Onish (Jul 9 2008)

·        Building Real-Life Math Skills: 16 Lessons With Reproducible Activity Sheets That Teach Measurement, Estimation… by Liane B Onish (Oct 1 2011)

·        Solve-the-Riddle Math Practice: Fractions & Decimals: 50+ Reproducible Activity Sheets That Help Students Master… by Liane B Onish (May 1 2012)

THE BOOK: Brain Quest Workbook: Pre-K: A whole year of curriculum-based exercises and activities in one fun book! [Paperback] by Liane Onish (Author)

First, Brain Quest Pre-K is curriculum-based. It helps the children with their lessons in class. It is directed to parents. It is well organized. It has photographs and the explanations are easy to understand. The workbook makes learning fun – it has exercises and games. The book includes such subjects as alphabets, numbers, letters, shapes, colors, sounds, etc. It uses mazes, sorting and matching, picture games, etc.


As parents, we love and take care of our children. Our overall job is to bring each of them up to become a well-adjusted and productive adult and a good citizen.  But, one of our jobs is to prepare our children for their school career.

Personal Comments

I say:

1. That attending a preschool with a high-quality program will not only prepare a child for kindergarten, but also their full school career.

2. That it’s crucial for a child at a young age to develop the brain.  This will have a positive effect on him or her throughout the rest of life.

3. That it’s good to keep a child active while they’re learning;

  1. That children can learn to like school by starting with a preschool in which they’ve had a pleasant experience. They’ll realize that learning can be fun.
  2. That preschool is where children will learn to interact with other children. A child needs to learn how to play in a group. They will learn to socialize, share and play in a group. Since they will have a group of friends to be with daily, they could make friends.
  3. That preschool contributes to a child’s social and emotional development.
  4. That preschool is where a child learns to follow instructions.
  5. That a good preschool can make a difference in how well a child develops socially and mentally.  It helps a child to advance in his or her education.

The Point

A good preschool is a great advantage to children.  It could be an expense, but if you can afford it, it’s worth every dime.


Every parent of a toddler should:

  1. Research the topic of preschool;
  2. Search for a preschool that is licensed and highly qualified. Your child is the reason;
  3. Look for a preschool with teachers who are well-trained and experienced;
  4. Keep in mind the recommended teacher-child ratio of preschoolers per staff member;
  5. Check out to see if the school has a good program.  You’ll know a good one, if it has a wide variety of singing, dancing, painting, reading, play time and also learning alphabets and counting. It also makes learning fun for your child.

Preschool is a place and time for coaching and practice; and that’s very good! Doesn’t that make sense?

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “preschool”, etc.

Preschool education (or infant education) is the provision of learning to children before the commencement of statutory and obligatory education, usually between the ages of three and five, depending on the jurisdiction. (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –



  • In a typical week during spring 2011, 12.5 million, or 61 percent, of the 20.4 million children under 5 were in some type of regular child care arrangement.
  • Family members continue to serve as an important source of child care for preschoolers. In 2011, 24 percent of preschoolers were regularly cared for by their grandparents, 18 percent by their fathers (while their mothers worked) and 10 percent by a sibling or other relative. The percentage of preschoolers cared for by grandparents has risen from 1997, when it was 21 percent.
  • Similar percentages of preschoolers with employed black or non-Hispanic white employed mothers were cared for by grandparents (32 percent and 31 percent, respectively).

Hours in Care

  • On average, preschoolers with employed mothers spent 15 hours more in child care than children with nonemployed mothers: 36 hours per week and 21 hours per week, respectively.

Father-Provided Care

  • Preschoolers whose mothers worked nights or evenings were more likely to have their father as a child care provider than those with mothers who worked a day shift (42 percent and 23 percent, respectively).
  • The use of any father care among Hispanic children with employed mothers increased to 32 percent in 2011, up from 20 percent in 2005.

Child Care Costs

  • Mothers with children under 5 were more likely to make child care payments than mothers with children only between 5 and 14 (46 percent and 23 percent, respectively).
  • While the cost of child care increased over time, the percent of monthly family income spent on child care stayed constant between 1997 and 2011, at around 7 percent.
  • Families in poverty who paid for child care in 2011 spent a greater proportion of their monthly income on child care than did families at or above the poverty line (30 percent compared with 8 percent).

(Source: U.S. Census Bureau) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Motivation for success at school

(NC) For a child to become motivated about school, they need to see learning as an enjoyable experience and believe that it is a sound investment in their future. Here are three steps parents can take to help children be more successful at school:

Set attainable goals: Teach or help your children to establish many goals within projects, both in school and with respect to everyday activities, such as cleaning their room and getting dressed in the morning.

Celebrate when your child has achieved a goal: Recognition and praise are powerful factors that encourage motivation. Reward your child with your time and attention. These are more important than anything else you could possibly offer.

Be specific with your praise: Saying you did a great job” is not clear enough. Tell your child specifically what you think is wonderful about them and what you liked about what they did. This will highlight the behaviours that you would like to see again and again and again.

Enrolling your child in an after-school program can help develop their excitement about school and learning, says Jasmina Zurovac, director of corporate donations at RBC. We’ve seen thousands of children who participate in these programs develop self-esteem and an increased motivation to excel in school.

Zurovac points out that the tips above were initiated by the RBC employee assistance provider, Ceridian Canada. Since 1999, she added, the RBC After School Project has provided more than $30 million in grants to 248 community-based after school programs in Canada, helping almost 31,000 children learn, grow and reach their full potential. More information is available online at

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2:Four tips to ease the transition back to school

(NC) Autumn marks a crucial time for families, especially for kids back to school and the daily routine of class, extra-curricular activities and homework. To ease your child back into the school year, make learning fun outside the classroom to keep their minds sharp. Tech expert, Amber Mac, the co-host of television show AppCentral, shares her tips for helping kids gear up for the school year ahead.


Reading is fundamental to childhood development. To make it interactive, replace the television with reading exercises in your child’s downtime. For example, the LeapReader (by LeapFrog) is a new technology tool that helps children sound out words, read sentences and works with your child’s skill level to improve their reading and vocabulary. Reading at home bolsters children’s imaginations, develops their interests and above all, is the ideal complement to school studies, says Amber Mac.

Challenge With Games

One of the key ways to make learning fun is to add an entertainment component. Games with an educational foundation are an easy way to ensure your child is learning while having fun. There are a number of kid-friendly tablets available, and one of the favourites is also from LeapFrog, the new kid-tested, LeapPad Ultra. With over 800 downloadable games, apps and videos for this device, your child will be able to tailor content to best suit their interests.

Make It Personal

With the return to the classroom come new wardrobe additions and fresh supplies. Spark your child’s creativity and encourage them to personalize. Whether it’s patches on a backpack, a keychain for their backpack they make themselves, or stickers to personalize their agenda, getting the creative juices flowing will give them a sense of accomplishment and allow them to express their unique personalities.

Schedule time for Fun

Plan educational and fun activities/outings on the weekends. For instance, visit a museum one day, play a word association game the next, or head to a sports game. The key is to switch up the routine and still integrate learning, while helping kids stay inspired and have fun.

Keeping kids engaged in learning activities outside of the classroom will ensure their minds are fresh and prepped for the school year ahead. Back to school is a special time for parents and children alike, so make the experience fun and keep the excitement and learning going throughout the year.

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 16th, 2013 Comments Off on PRESCHOOL: Age, teacher, books, songs, crafts, games, etc. – I think toddlers are so adorable!*



Vol. 4, No.22, Monday, September 9, 2013

TITLE:  “9/11 COMMEMORATION 12TH ANNIVERSARY: “On 9/11, I remember, support, pay homage; I also believe and have faith!*” UPDATE – Sept.11th, 2013


It will soon be Wednesday, September 11th, 2013.  I am again thinking about that fateful day in fall, 2001 when the world changed. I am also thinking about where we are now, on this, the 11th anniversary of 9/11. My book remains the same:  “Commission Report 911 by Commission National” (Hardcover – Aug 30 2004). This book contributes to our understanding of this horrific event. (Editor’s Note: This is the thirds update of the blog post, first published  Vol. 1,  No. 14, September 12th, 2010)

UPDATE-Sept. 11, 2013

I recognize the magnitude of the catastrophe. I am sad over the loss of life. Last night, I watched a show commemorating 9/11. I again saw some of the unforgettable images from that fateful day. I was touched by the stories of people who were there and are still living with their painful memories. I heard about some who had moved on. I fear that it will happen again.

P.S. In the show, there was a Muslim woman, who stated that 9/11 was committed by terrorists who happen to be Muslim extremists. She regrets that many Americans look at Muslims with suspicion. She states the vast majority of U.S. Muslims are loyal Americans – they live in peace and harmony with their countrymen. This statement made me think of the new Quebec law that the P.Q. provincial government is attempting to pass, which would prohibit the wearing of religious head gear and visible symbols in public places.  I think that this is wrong. We need to respect all our fellow citizens and their freedom of religion.

P. P.S. A while back, I saw a TV program about a man who misrepresented that he was a victim of the 9/11 attack – he tried to get money for the loss of a non-existent partner. I was repulsed by his greed, insensitivity and lack of morals. He is one of the lowest of the low! 

UPDATE – Sept.11, 2012

On September 4th, in Quebec, Canada, we just had a general election – it was quite acrimonious. Once the polls closed, a man angry with the election results, showed up at the victory party of the winning leader/party. He was armed, killing one innocent, wounding another, trying to get to the Premier – elect presumably to carry out an assassination.  Those with a political agenda still live to die and do us harm. This was close to home. There is still work to do to stop terrorism, foreign and home-grown. We owe it to the fallen on 9/11.

P.S. On the news this morning, there was an announcement that a further benefits package for first responders and others at ground zero was to be put into place. While it’s late, I will still say that’s good! Recognition of those brave souls shall never cease. Love and gratitude for them is an ongoing work in progress.


This week, it has been heartbreaking to again watch on television some of the footage on the events of the 911 attacks. Today, I watched some TV documentaries. I went numb in shock all over again. There were images of blown out windows, people running down the stairs trying to escape, etc.

The thought of the jumpers was extremely tough. The falling man photo was difficult to look at. The stories of flight 93 and the others were so moving. The fact is that many people didn’t make it. The lives of so many innocent people were lost.

A terrorist organization, Al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility. It was the doer of the deed. We attempt to get into their heads, trying to make sense of their intentions – it can’t be done. It is necessary to find these to be evil acts.  These were murderers.  The hijackers died, but they were not punished. Many of the leaders, especially Osama Bin Laden have been killed, but they have not been punished. These people should have been punished.

The allies went into Afghanistan and waged war, toppling the Taliban, a regime in a failed state, harboring Al-Qaeda.  The cost has been huge. Many soldier lives were sacrificed.  There have been several notable subsequent attacks, foreign or home-grown, in many countries.  Many further civilian lives have been lost.  Now 10 years later, the world is still, very much, in a defensive mode.  Getting on a plane is still very difficult – high security is necessary. There have been many complaints about “patting down”.   The announcement about the killing of Bin Laden, the master-mind of the 9/ll attacks, finally came. President Obama got it done, but there was no relief. The number two also was taken out, and still no relief.   There still is a fear that other attacks might happen.  Word is that Bin Laden had plans for another attack on the tenth anniversary.  New York and most of the world are on high alert.  The war against terror goes on.

There has been one controversy after another: what to do with ground zero, the building of a mosque in lower Manhattan, the deteriorating health of the 9/11 first responders. (The US Congress just recently passed a bill covering their care.)

But I really want to talk about the people.  I pray for those who left us so suddenly.  I pray for the victim families. Last week on a morning show, a lady along with her children, talked about how they want to put the tragedy behind them and move on with their lives.  From 9/11 victims fund, both of the children were given scholarships to study in Great Britain.  They both took advantage of the offer and got a good education.  It’s nice to know that these folks were provided for and are gaining success. That makes me feel good. And while I am brought to tears by the heroism of average people, so many heroes, their selfless sacrifice … I am strengthened in my belief in people, their goodness. I thank you all who gave so much from the bottom of my heart.

In closing, I recognize that our world wide global village is getting smaller. No matter where we live, we were all witnesses to 9/11, the worst and best in humanity. The aftermath is just more of the same – the best and worst of what humanity has to offer.

Ground Zero refused to be the abyss. Instead, in a flash, it turned into holy ground and in 10 years,  it has become a place for a memorial garden and a construction site where the new World Trade Center is proudly being erected – proof positive that good does indeed beat evil. We don’t forget, but together we move on!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours? *
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*

P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta

*TM/© 2010, 2011, 2012,2013  Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.
=========================================================================ORIGINAL POST – Vol. 1,  No. 14, September 12th, 2010


This weekend, on the anniversary of 9/11, I got to thinking about that fateful day. I would like to share with you some of my experiences and thoughts.

Since I start work at 8:00 a.m., I was in the office when I first heard the bulletin. I will always remember that moment. It is one of the significant days of my generation. In the instance of the deaths of Pres. J.F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Dr. King, etc. and the walk on the moon by Astronaut Neil Armstrong and the fall of Saigon, I was younger and not quite part of the adult world. But with 9/11, I was of age and I had to deal with it.

It was approximately 10:00 a.m. when people were slowly trickling into my work space to discuss the tragedy. I could not quite believe it. I kept thinking that the TV pictures were from a horror movie not the news channel. When I kind of digested what had happened, it kept getting worse. I desperately wanted it to stop. Like everyone, I did not then know how it would escalate and play out. It marked me along with the entire world.

Here are some stats:
*The victims numbered about 3,000;
* There were 19 hijackers who died;
World Trade Center
* There were 2,752 victims of which there were: (a) 343 firefighters; (b) 60 police officers from New York City and the Port Authority; (As per  the New York State Health Department, 836 responders died as of June 2009.)
* Most were civilians, including nationals from more than 70 nations;
* People in the 100s were killed instantly upon the planes crashing into the the towers, while many of the others were trapped and died after the buildings collapsed.
* About 200 +- jumped to their deaths;
* There was one secondary death, from lung disease due to dust from the building collapse;
* At Pentagon, there were 184 people who died.
(Source: Commission Report, Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, etc.)

THE AUTHOR: 9/11 Commission
The 9/11 Commission – its formal name is the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. It was established on November 27, 2002. Its mandate was: “to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001 attacks, including preparedness for and the immediate response to the attacks”
(Source Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).

There are many books on topic; as for example, notably:
1.  “New Pearl Harbour” by David Ray Griffin;
2.  “ The 911 Commission Report Omissions and Distortions” by David Griffin;
3. “Crossing the Rubicon” by Michael C Ruppert;
5. “Towers of Deception” by Barrie Zwicker;
(N.B. These books are enumerated for your information – I am not recommending them and I do not necessarily subscribe to their conclusions.)

THE BOOK: Commission Report 911 by Commission National (Hardcover – Aug 30 2004)
It is a comprehensive document, fact-filled narrative of the real story, step-by-step, playing out in several locations involving many people. It is both heart-breaking from the immense tragedy and uplifting due to the heroic acts of ordinary folks meeting the challenges and becoming shining stars of the righteous. Read and endure, but also rise to the heavens. It is an impressive read, which will surely move you. You will finish it with an opinion of what was good and what was deficient in the U.S. response.

The 9/11 tragedy affected all of us emotionally. For me, I felt numb because of the innocent people at work killed for no reason. I also felt fear. But in the end, I felt hope out of courage.
The point
It was a horrible event. I will not deal with the policies – I will leave that to the governments. I will not deal with the politics – I will leave that to the politicians. I will not deal with the issues of the military – I will leave that to the top brass and the officer corp. But I will deal with the human side.
1. First, people perished that day – I remember and will never forget. I also acknowledge the tours of duty served and the supreme sacrifice of brave American, Canadian and other NATO soldiers in Afghanistan. etc., and I affirm my heartfelt gratitude and support.
2. Second, families lost loved ones – I extend my deepest sympathy and express my personal wish to stand with them to provide never-ending succor.
3. Third, there were heroes – I pay homage to these brave people.
4. Fourth, because of an appointment or a stop at a grocery store or just missing the bus, arrivals were delayed until after the tragedy had started; and as a result, lives were incredibly spared. When I heard some of the stories that were revealed later, it confirmed my belief in destiny – I believe.
5. Finally, I encourage each and every person who survived 9/11 to extend a courtesy to one another regardless, of nationality, creed, religion, etc. – I have faith that, someday, the world shall overcome the cause of 9/11 and we all shall live in harmony.

Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours? *
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
-Web Tech:
The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2010, 2011, 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



“President Mubarak of Egypt was on an official visit to Qatar and asked to be shown the network [the fiestily independent Arab television network, Al Jazeera],” an Iraqi employee once recalled. “He arrived unannounced and at first the guys on the gate didn’t recognize him. When he finally got inside, he was appalled at how small we were. ‘So this,’ he said, ‘is the tiny tinderbox that started such a big fire.’”

[“Whatever we do, people say, ‘Why are you doing this now?'” Al Jazeera’s Ali Mohammed Kamal once remarked of Arabic culture of suspicion and paranoia. “They even said it when we did a story on the history of the Lebanese civil war. And when we ran a video of one of the 9/11 hijackers reading his own will before embarking on the attack, we were accused of distracting attentino from the [Israeli] siege on Arafat’s compound. [pause] But Arafat’s compound is always under siege. For us, the news is the news.”] (Source: –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #2: Tumbling Woman
“In 2002, officials at New York’s Rockefeller Center unveiled a sculpture called “Tumbling Woman” by Eric Fischl intended to commemorate victims of the 9/11 World Trade Center attack who fell (or jumped) from the towers’ windows. Following a host of complaints, “Tumbling Woman” was deemed inappropriate and promptly removed.” (Source: –

S & R* QUOTE #1: President George W. Bush
“It changed my presidency …it was like walking into hell.”

S & R* QUOTE #2: – Aristotle
“Fear is pain arising from the anticipation of evil.” (Source:  Wisdom Quotes) –

For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “World Trade Center (N.Y)”; “9/11 Attacks”; etc.

World Trade Center

“The original World Trade Center was a complex of seven buildings featuring landmark twin towers in Lower Manhattan, New York City, United States. The complex opened on April 4, 1973, and was destroyed in 2001 during the September 11 attacks. The site is being rebuilt with five new skyscrapers and a memorial to the casualties of the attacks. As of September 2011[update], only one skyscraper has been completed with four more expected to be completed before 2020. A sixth tower is still awaiting confirmation to be built. At the time of their completion, the original 1 and 2 World Trade Center were the tallest buildings in the world, surpassing the Empire State Building, also in Manhattan.

The complex was designed in the early 1960s by Minoru Yamasaki and Associates of Troy, Michigan, and Emery Roth and Sons of New York.[2] The twin 110-story towers used a tube-frame structural design. To gain approval for the project, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey agreed to take over the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad, which became the Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH). Groundbreaking for the World Trade Center took place on August 5, 1966. The North Tower (1) was completed in December 1972 and the South Tower (2) was finished in July 1973. The construction project involved excavating a large amount of material, which was later used as landfill to build Battery Park City on the west side of Lower Manhattan. The cost for the construction was $400 million ($2,169,167,354 in 2011 dollars).[3] The complex was located in the heart of New York City’s downtown financial district and contained 13.4 million square feet (1.24 million m2) of office space.[4][5] The Windows on the World restaurant was located on the 106th and 107th floors of 1 World Trade Center (the North Tower) while the Top of the World observation deck was located on the 107th floor of 2 World Trade Center (the South Tower). Other World Trade Center buildings included the Marriott World Trade Center; 4 World Trade Center; 5 World Trade Center; 6 World Trade Center, which housed the United States Customs. All of these buildings were built between 1975 and 1981. The final building constructed was 7 World Trade Center, which was built in 1985. The second King Kong was filmed in 1976 with some scenes mentioning and showing the World Trade Center. The World Trade Center experienced a fire on February 13, 1975, and a bombing on February 26, 1993. In 1998, the Port Authority decided to privatize the World Trade Center, leasing the buildings to a private company to manage, and awarded the lease to Silverstein Properties in July 2001.” (Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia) –

9/11 Attacks

“The September 11 attacks (also referred to as September 11, September 11th or 9/11[nb 1]) were a series of four coordinated suicide attacks upon the United States in New York City and the Washington, D.C., area on September 11, 2001. On that Tuesday morning, 19 terrorists from the Islamist militant group al-Qaeda hijacked four passenger jets.[3][4] The hijackers intentionally crashed two planes, American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175, into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City; both towers collapsed within two hours. Hijackers crashed American Airlines Flight 77 into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. The fourth jet, United Airlines Flight 93, crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after passengers attempted to take control before it could reach the hijacker’s intended target in Washington, D.C. Nearly 3,000 died in the attacks.[5][6][7]
Suspicion quickly fell on al-Qaeda, and in 2004, the group’s leader Osama bin Laden, who had initially denied involvement, claimed responsibility for the attacks.[2] Al-Qaeda and bin Laden cited U.S. support of Israel, the presence of U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia, and sanctions against Iraq as motives for the attacks. The United States responded to the attacks by launching the War on Terror, invading Afghanistan to depose the Taliban, who had harbored al-Qaeda members. Many countries strengthened their anti-terrorism legislation and expanded law enforcement powers. In May 2011, after years at large, bin Laden was found and killed.

The destruction caused serious damage to the economy of Lower Manhattan.[8] Cleanup of the World Trade Center site was completed in May 2002, and the Pentagon was repaired within a year. Numerous memorials were constructed, including the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York, the Pentagon Memorial, and the Flight 93 National Memorial. Adjacent to the National Memorial, the 1,776 feet (541 m) One World Trade Center is estimated for completion in 2013.[9]” (Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia) –


See above.

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1: 9/11 activities for Canadians
(NC)—”The images and painful memories of the September 11 terror attacks may still be fresh on the minds of the families who lost loved ones—even though they occurred a decade ago. For the rest of us, the constant dose of discouraging news events—from natural disasters, civic unrest, heinous crimes, scandal-plagued celebrities, and sporadic eruptions of violence—are enough to desensitize us to the horrors experienced by victims on that fateful day.

To soften your heart to the every day realities of the Sept. 11 victims’ families and friends, consider taking part in one of these activities:

1 Write letters of appreciation to your local fire, police, and emergency services departments. Also don’t forget the service men and women who fight terrorism overseas. These individuals live lives of sacrifice. Remember to say “thanks”.

2 Act on compassion. Think of ways you can make positive change in the world. Share your talents at a seniors centre. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Help a child living in extreme poverty through Christian Children’s Fund of Canada. The opportunities are there if you are willing to act.

3 Embrace multiculturalism. On 9/11, countries around the world set aside their cultural differences to unite in sympathy over the thousands who perished. Do your part to promote peace by: reading biographies about notable country leaders who had a positive impact on their constituents; opening your mind and taste buds to ethnic foods; or learning a new language.

Participate in these activities to make 9/11 a lesson learned on compassion and sensitivity. Keep informed on landmark events that changed the world and do your part to improve your world.” “News Canada” <>

*TM/© 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 9th, 2013 Comments Off on 9/11 COMMEMORATION 12TH ANNIVERSARY: “ON 9/11, I REMEMBER, SUPPORT, PAY HOMAGE; I ALSO BELIEVE AND HAVE FAITH!* UPDATE – SEPT.9, 2013

LABOUR (LABOR) DAY: It is the day to honor working men and women; whether weekend, holiday, classic, etc., I like it … a lot! – UPDATE 2013

Vol. 4, No.21, Friday, August 30th, 2013

TITLE: “LABOUR (LABOR)  DAY: It is the day to honor working men and women; whether weekend, holiday, classic, etc.,  I like it … a lot!– UPDATE 2013”


With Labour Day this weekend, I thought that it would be interesting to look into the history and the doings of this holiday- it is celebrated in many parts of the world.   Hence, my subject is Labour day. My book of the week is “Labour Day” [Paperback] by Jesse Russell (Author), Ronald Cohn (Author) (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on holidays and special dates.)  



Labour Day, regardless how you spell it … with or without a “u”, originated as a result of the labour movement. It is a day off on the first Monday in September.  Nowadays, it is, more or less, the season changer … signaling the date to get seriously down to work. It is also the period for special sales. If with school age kids, parents  use these days for last minute preparations for the start of a new school year. With the airing of the annual Jerry Lewis MDS telethon, it’s even the moment to think of others. You can therefore spend money thinking of yourself and also of others.

Working at educational institution

Labour day is about workers. I worked for an educational institution for 35 years.  We were all members of a union and paid union dues.  Although at times, we complained that our union was not negotiating hard enough for us, our working conditions were very good and we were well paid.

Family Time

How do we celebrate the last long weekend of summer? In my home, it was and still is a day to spend with family.


Like most people, I see this as being the last weekend before getting back to serious work, starting in September.  Usually, I enjoy this time with family. I also try to relax. This year, with the move into the new house and remodeling, while I look forward to some visiting, mostly I will be busy unpacking and cleaning. I’m looking forward to going back to work – you see … I’ll get to sit down! 

THE AUTHOR:   Jesse Russell

Jesse Russell (Ventura)  has an impressive résumé. He was a U.S. Navy Seal, professional wrestler, movie actor – he is also a former Independent governor of Minnesota and a former visiting fellow at Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He is a  bestselling New York Times author.  He is currently the host and executive producer of truTV’s Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura.



Here are a few :

THE BOOK: Labour Day [Paperback] by Jesse Russell (Author), Ronald Cohn (Author) 

Labor Day is a celebration of achievements accomplished by workers. It was started by the labour union movement regarding the eight-hour day formula. Its was eight hours for work, eight hours for recreation and eight hours for rest. 

This book is significant in validating Labour day from a workplace standpoint. This day is also culturally important.  Labour day has been part of the lives of the generations before  and continues to be a part of our lives today.   Knowing where we`ve been helps us to see more clearly where we are and where we are going.  (Source in part: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia)


Labour Day is the day when the contributions of working men and women are recognized.  It’s also a day to take pause from work. Remember the saying: “All work and no play makes “Jack” a dull boy.” Indeed, I encourage one and all to “Play it again … Some!”

Personal Comments

I say:

1.      That it’s great to know that, in our country, we have labour standards.  For example, we must sometimes work overtime, but it should not be on a regular basis. There are also safety regulations. Who can argue with being safe in the workplace? The enforcement of standards and regulations and the upholding of worker rights make for a quality of life for all of us. 

2.      That I want working conditions to be improved for all workers worldwide.

3.      That what concerns me the most is child labour. We live in a country where there are rules against that. In my book, there is zero tolerance for such atrocities. A few years ago, I was watching a documentary show on television. I was shocked to hear that a major company was accused of using child labour to produce products under a very expensive, well-known brand. Some people refuse to buy such products. Let’s retaliate and stop buying the brands that use children.   

4.      That this is a day for you to live  … doing the things that you like to do.

5.      That during the year, we don’t get that many three-day weekends. This is the last chance for a get-a-way before the end of vacation and start of the school year

6.     That on this day, we should use the time to relax and unwind.  It recharges the body and allows a person to go back to work with more energy.  When rested, a person can be more productive.   


Labour day: let`s make the most of it and also enjoy it.


I encourage everyone to:

 1.      Take the day off. It’s the day for worker bees and Queen Bee alike to take a time out weekend.  Put up a “Gone fishing” sign on your hive!

2.      Go to an event or activity planned on Labour Day.

3.      Make it a family day. 

4.      Prepare for school if you have children. 

5.     Plan a get-a-way weekend before summer ends. 

6.      Catch up on work around the house; it’s also the day to close up your summer cottage, (if you have one) before the winter.

7.      Have a BBQ.

8.      Play a sport or enjoy a hobby.

9.      Start reading a new book.

10.      Watch a TV sports program like a Labour Day Classic or the annual Jerry Lewis MDS Telethon.

11.      Put away, if you know what’s good for you,  your white shoes!

So there you have it. Without getting too dry on the info, I tried to alert you that it’s the point to get serious on rest and relaxation. Let’s all get into the easy-going mood for Labour Day. And yes, I really like Labour Day. So much so, I ask: “Pretty please …. can we have a few others: how about the  first Monday of October followed by the first Monday in November? I promise to smile a lot!*

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

P.S. Big News: There are changes coming made to my blog. Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013, 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




S & R* QUOTE #1: Eleanor Roosevelt

“Life must be lived and curiosity kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life.”  (Source: Wisdom Quotes

S & R* QUOTE #2: Albert Einstein 

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes 

 S & R* QUOTE #3:

For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “Labour Day”; “Labour Union”

Labour Day

“Labor Day or Labour Day is an annual holiday to celebrate the achievements of workers. Labour Day has its origins in the labour union movement, specifically the eight-hour day movement, which advocated eight hours for work, eight hours for recreation, and eight hours for rest.”  (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

Labour Union

“A trade union (British English), labour union (Canadian English) or labor union (American English) is an organization of workers who have banded together to achieve common goals such as protecting the integrity of its trade, achieving higher pay, increasing the number of employees an employer hires, and better working conditions.”

(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia)–


“Labour Day has been celebrated on the first Monday in September in Canada since the 1880s. The origins of Labour Day in Canada can be traced back to December 1872 when a parade was staged in support of the Toronto Typographical Union’s strike for a 58-hour work-week.[1] The Toronto Trades Assembly (TTA) called its 27 unions to demonstrate in support of the Typographical Union who had been on strike since March 25. [1] George Brown, Canadian politician and editor of the Toronto Globe hit back at his striking employees, pressing police to charge the Typographical Union with “conspiracy.”[1] Although the laws criminalising union activity were outdated and had already been abolished in Great Britain, they were still on the books in Canada and police arrested 24 leaders of the Typographical Union.

An old fashioned tradition in Canada and the United States bans the wearing of white after Labour Day. Explanations for this tradition vary; the most common is that white is a summer colour and Labour Day unofficially marks the end of summer. The rule may have been intended as a status symbol for new members of the upper and middle classes in the late 19th and early 20th century.[1][2]” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

“The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members (rank and file members) and negotiates labour contracts (collective bargaining) with employers. The most common purpose of these associations or unions is “maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment“.[1]

This may include the negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, workplace safety and policies. The agreements negotiated by the union leaders are binding on the rank and file members and the employer and in some cases on other non-member workers. 

The origins of unions’ existence can be traced from the 18th century, where the rapid expansion of industrial society drew women, children, rural workers, and immigrants to the work force in numbers and in new roles.  Trade unions as such were endorsed by the Catholic Church towards the end of the 19th century. Pope Leo XIII in his “Magna Carta“—Rerum Novarum—spoke against the atrocities workers faced and demanded that workers should be granted certain rights and safety regulations.[2] Industries like textile mills and railways companies had started in India in the latter half of the 19th century.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Healthy eats make Labour Day celebrations better

“As summer comes to a close with the Labour Day weekend, families, neighbours and friends will be hosting a lot of get-togethers and feeding the masses. You’re bound to see the usual spread of hamburgers, chips and soda pop. However, if you would like to step it up a notch and mix in an original, healthy and tasty dish that offers your guests a megawatt dose of bio-available minerals, the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) has the recipe to do just that. You can find the ingredients at any natural health retailer or visit to find one in your community. Also consider preparing a little ingredients card too, letting your guests know that health can taste fabulous.

Orange Infused Walnut Kale Salad

Ingredients (Try to use organic ingredients):

6-8 handfuls of kale (baby kale that is organic and pre-washed if possible)

3/4 cup walnuts

2 small oranges sliced  


1/3 cup sesame or extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup brown rice vinegar

4 tbsp orange (naturally) flavoured Omega 3 fish oil. (or hemp or flax oil)

1/2 cup fresh mint

Fresh juice from 1 orange

2 tbsp orange rind

Method: Place all your dressing ingredients into a food processor and blend till the mint is completely chopped up, about 30 seconds. Place your leafy greens into a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Sprinkle with walnuts and orange slices. (Makes 4 generous servings.)

More tasty recipes are available online at” 

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Family time will beat the end-of-summer blues

“The Labour Day weekend marks the unofficial end of summer, but it’s not too late to get in some last-minute fun around town. Here are some suggestions for packing in your last week of summer-oriented fun.

Get in one last camping trip. Pack up and head out for a day or a weekend surrounded by nature. Remember your camping checklist to make the trip a success.

Explore your city by bike. Get two wheels on the road and tour your town on a family bike outing. Ride familiar routes or discover a new favourite trail.

Take a trip to a local farmer’s market and pick your own favourite summer produce while you still can. Or, get hands-on in your own kitchen and make some refreshing popsicles.

You can also take time out with the kids to think about what you all can do as a family to help those in need. Organize a fundraiser with neighbours, extended family, and friends. Or, virtually help others through the web. Organizations like Christian Children’s Fund of Canada ( have an online gift catalogue to connect your family to the needs of children living in poverty around the world.

Discover the joy of giving to others and make the remaining summer days count.”  

*TM/© 2013, 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved. 

Posted by on August 30th, 2013 Comments Off on LABOUR (LABOR) DAY: It is the day to honor working men and women; whether weekend, holiday, classic, etc., I like it … a lot! – UPDATE 2013

BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*

Vol. 4, No.20, Monday, August 26, 2013

TITLE: “BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*”


With the extensive remodeling being carried out in my new home, it brought to mind the question of whether to buy a newly built (constructed) house or purchase and renovate an old one. There are pros and cons for each.  Therefore, my book of the week isThe Old House Handbook: The Essential Guide to Care and Repair” by Roger Hunt and Marianne Suhr. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and gardens..)


Past: Many of the houses in which I lived, were brand new.  The newness of  a house was definitely a big attraction for me. And oh yes, I really like the smell of new wood.

Present: My new home is an older house … but not too old – approximately 40 years old.  I do admit that from a construction quality point of view, the house is solid and better built. But the architectural design was not up-to-date.  For instance, there was no space for a built-in dishwasher – this is unheard of in new houses. We had to do extensive remodeling. We made it suitable for our needs. We wanted modern conveniences. We also like comfort and easy access.

Future: With new houses, you usually have to move further out from the city. You probably need a second car and usually fight traffic and rush hour.  Not everybody is prepared to do so.  In my city, condos are being built all over. In the heart of downtown, they are very luxurious and selling at an expensive price. Many of the buyers are older and very rich. Surprisingly, there are also those young and successful – these 30+ are moving into these condos and loving it.

A story or two: Someone I know bought an old gray stone house.  The first thing that they had to do was strip it down removing all of its electrical wirings and plumbing piping.  It cost them a small fortune.

THE AUTHOR: Roger Hunt, co-author (with Marianne Suhr)

Roger Hunt –This author and blogger appreciates architecture and is knowledgeable of materials and techniques used in construction. He knows about homes in Great Britain, both past and present, especially in a non urban setting. He is something of an expert known as a lecturer, serving as a judge of for new housing awards and sitting on the editorial board of the SPAB magazine.

Marianne Suhr – She is a Chartered Building Surveyor specializing in the repair of historic buildings. She had a scholarship with the SPAB and then had seven years experience in architectural practice. She also got her hands dirty repairing  many old houses. She is a lecturer and has given courses. She is a consultant.



Here are several:

·        Colonels in Blue–Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee: A Civil War Biographical Dictionary by Roger D. Hunt (Jan 20 2014)

·        A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern and Central North America by Joseph T. Collins, Roger Conant, Roger Tory Peterson and Isabelle Hunt Conant (May 15 1998)

·        Process Plant Layout and Piping Design by Ed Bausbacher and Roger Hunt (Jul 22 1993)

·        Villages of England: Photographs by Richard Turpin by Richard Turpin (Photographer) Roger Hunt (1999)

·        The Autobiography of Leigh Hunt, with Reminiscences of Friends and Contemporaries, and with Thornton Hunt’s Introduction… by Leigh Hunt, Roger Ingpen and Thornton Leigh Hunt (Aug 29 2010)

THE BOOK: The Old House Handbook: The Essential Guide to Care and Repair by Roger Hunt and Marianne Suhr (Nov 18 2008)

If you have a house that is not newly-built never occupied, this book is for you. If  maintenance is on your mind, the book is helpful. If you must do repairs, this book gives you an edge. The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings thinks that you should conserve old houses and buildings – each is an architectural treasure. Their approach is not ‘restoration’; the risk is high that the historical legacy of any old building will be lost. Instead, the book encourages respect, restraint and repair.

It is a practical guide to home repair projects. If you start with foundation – it goes from the ground up. If you start with the roof, it’s the top down. In between, there are windows and doors, ceilings, walls and floors. Also don’t forget painting and finishing.


There are advantages to buying a new house … also disadvantages. The same can be said for purchasing and renovating an older home.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That depending on how old the house is, you could be doing renovations for a long time to come.
  • That buying a ‘fixer-upper’ can be rewarding because the remodeling will be according to your taste.  But you really need a lot of patience to get through it.
  • That living in a neighborhood with older houses, you run the risk of facing neighborhood cliques. You see, I used to watch “Peyton Place.” More recently, I watched “Desperate Housewives.” I think you get the picture.
  • That depending on the renovations, an older house can cost you more than a new one.
  • That big backyards and mature trees, which you typically can find in an older neighborhood, are hard to find in a new neighborhood.
  • That older houses are more solid and better built.
  • That new houses are better designed and the layout of the house is better divided and useful.  Basements are at a regular height and can be used.
  • That with a new house, you generally don’t have to worry about renovations for awhile.
  • That in new neighborhoods, big trees are scarce.

The Point

It’s easier to make a newly-built house your personal castle. But, with a house built a long time ago, while it takes great time, effort and money, you get the added bonus of charm.  The house that meets your needs truly becomes a home.


Every prospective house-buyer must:

1. Figure out what  are the priorities if you’re in the market to buy a house?

2. Note that an older house:

(a)    Is usually solid and better built;

(b)   Has a large backyard – chances are that there are big beautiful trees;

(c)    Requires in most cases, a lot of renovations;

(d)   Is of an architectural design, which does not have modern conveniences;

(e)    Has a basement with a ceiling that isn’t high enough;

(f)     Is not energy efficient – chances are it lacks proper insulation.

2.  Note that a newer house:

(a)    Includes most modern conveniences of today;

(b)   Has a smaller backyard with smaller trees, if any;

(c)    Requires minimal renovations;

(d)   Is built up to code;

(e)    Is built cheaper, although anesthetically beautiful;

(f)     Is probably located in a suburban area.

3. Write down your pros and cons for an older house versus a new one.  Then make your choice according to your needs.

I’m home sweet home, although I have been using a hammer and screwdriver  more than a cooking pan and a serving spoon!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are more changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “new homes”; etc …

“New home sales is an economic indicator which records sales of newly constructed residences in the United States of America.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“Although the United States is more than 200 years old, its housing inventory is young. In 2001, just 8.3 percent of all American housing was built before 1920.

This report examines housing units built 82 years or more ago (which are referred to as old units), and compares their characteristics with those of units built after 1989 (which are referred to as new units). The data are from the 2001 American Housing Survey (AHS), National Sample.

Old housing is important for several reasons. Despite its small proportion of the total housing stock, old homes account for about 10 million housing units and were the primary residence of 8.6 million households. Because of their age, these units may present particular problems in housing quality and safety, but they may also have unique characteristics (aside from any historical significance) that could make them desirable homes.

Finally, given that the median price of new single−family homes sold in 2001 was $175,200, these old houses may provide more affordable opportunities for homeownership. “ (Source: U.S. Census Bureau –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: 5 ways to make sure that you are buying the right home

“Finding a home and getting a deal signed, sealed and delivered is one of the biggest and most emotionally-charged decisions that people ever make.

In fact, a recent Bank of Montreal report found that 80 per cent of prospective homebuyers know if a house is the one the moment they step inside.

According to Phil Dorner, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association, while that initial feeling is important, buyers should keep in mind that there are several other factors to consider before making a final decision

Although your initial feeling about a property is a powerful force, make sure to follow these five steps to help ensure that you aren’t going to be faced with unwelcome surprises, says Dorner.

Here are five important steps for prospective buyers to take before making any decisions:

Talk to the neighbours: The best way to get an idea of what it would be like to live in a particular neighbourhood is to talk to someone who already lives there. Chat with neighbours about the community, schools, commute and any potential surprises that you should know about.

Work with a local Realtor: Look for a Realtor who works in the area and knows the ins and outs of the community. Asking friends, family and colleagues for references is a great place to start. Another good way to find a Realtor active in the area is to go to open houses in the neighbourhood.

Get a home inspection: In Ontario, a home inspection reports on the condition of the roof, structure, foundation, drainage, heating, cooling, plumbing, insulation, walls, doors and electrical system. The cost of a home inspection can vary so do your research and make sure to choose a qualified home inspector who will also inform you of the scope and limitations of the inspection.

Check with the city: Visit your local building department and find out if any new developments are planned. Check to see how many owners have applied to build homes or additions that are larger than the by-law permits [UTF-8?]– this gives an indication of the neighbourhood’s future.

When it comes to making a home buying decision, do your homework and be sure to enlist a real estate professional to guide you through the process.”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Energy-saving concrete walls will weather any storm

(NC) “More frequent hurricane winds, tornados, spontaneous fire, flooding and drought in Canada is motivating the construction industry to point out a ready-made solution for far more durable materials and methods. Green technology has already developed an energy-saving option to replace standard wood framing with an interlocking concrete system using pre-assembled, ‘insulated concrete forms’.

Occupant safety is one good reason to build a stronger, wind- and fire-resistant home as meteorologists confirm the extreme weather patterns due to 16 years of higher than normal temperatures across Canada, says Todd Blyth at Nudura, a leading name in the supply of insulated concrete forms. Significant energy savings is another. More and more buildings in North America, including private homes, are opting for concrete. As demonstrated year after year, the impact resistance of ICF buildings protects it from storm winds up to 250 miles per hour. It is also more structurally sound during floods and the fire resistance is up to 4 hours. With a solid, reinforced concrete envelope, your energy bills can be reduced up to 70 per cent.

Our Nudura forms interlock, like Lego, to create one monolithic wall with a thickness from 4 to 12 inches, Blyth continued. By combining two panels of thick (EPS) foam with the structural strength and thermal mass of concrete, the walls can provide an efficiency rating as high as R-50, compared to an average R20 in wood structures. You get a far stronger, lower-cost home, with a warm and inviting indoor atmosphere.

On the outside, the concrete structure can be finished with smart-looking brick, or even more creatively with stone, stucco, wood, or vinyl siding. And inside, says Blyth, the aesthetics accommodate all the dream features as well. Innovative architectural shapes such as arches, bay windows, and specific door styles are easily achieved to meet the desired interior design.

Interior comforts

Concrete is strong and it is also occupant-friendly. In a standard wood-framed home, the outside cold easily travels through the walls causing thermal bridging and creating uncomfortable chilly spots in various rooms. Alternatively, walls built with a solid concrete core address and prevent thermal bridging to deliver even temperatures throughout the house.

The interior atmosphere is comfortable and quiet, Blyth continued. Reinforced concrete is an effective sound barrier. It dampens vibrations from outside noise, such as traffic, trains, and neighborhood parties. Sound-proofing is a true bonus of the ICF building system and so is the investment value of the home. It is generally expected that a stronger, safer, greener home, and one that is more durable, more cost efficient, and needs less maintenance and repair, will steadily increase in resale value.

Be aware, he adds, that the request to build your walls with concrete must be made early in the planning stage. More information is available online at”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on August 26th, 2013 Comments Off on BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*

PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*

Vol. 4, No.19, Monday, August 19, 2012

TITLE: “PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*”


I’m back!!!! There was recent media coverage of the tragic death of two boys sleeping overnight in an upstairs flat –they were killed by a python, which escaped from a downstairs pet store. The snake was a Rock African Python. It happened in New Brunswick, Canada. If I heard right, the parents are not angry at the pet owner. If this is so, it’s incredible!  This evoked personal memories for me. I want to share my experience with you. This brings up the question: “Is a python considered a pet?”  You would be surprised at the answer. I was.  My book of the week is therefore Pythons [Paperback] Patricia Bartlett (Author), Ernie Wagner (Author). (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)


A few years ago, I discovered that one of my tenants had a snake as a pet.  Guess what – it was a python.  Apparently, this mother had decided to buy it for her daughter. The lease clearly stated “No pets allowed”.  I immediately called her and informed her that she was in violation of her lease.  Surprisingly, she refused to get rid of it.

I was put in a position where I didn’t feel safe in my own house.  I felt violated. I was always on guard. I was afraid for my life. But also, I feared an infestation from mice. You see, most snake owners feed their pets live mice.  And during a feeding, there’s always a chance that a mouse might run away.

I then made a complaint with the authorities. Even more surprising, I discovered that a snake, even a python, was considered a pet suitable for a residence. It didn’t require a special facility or cage. I was shocked! The end result was that she decided to leave on her own.

I also have other stories.

Story #1: There was one of a python, which had escaped from its tank.  The house then had to be evacuated because the people couldn’t find it.

Story #2: A friend just told me about a woman keeping six pythons in her home regardless of having two small children. Clearly, this is an accident waiting to happen.

Story #3: On the news Friday, August 16th 2013, it was reported that police were called to a hotel in Brantford (near Toronto Canada). In one room, there were 40 snakes ranging from 30 cm to 1.40 m, abandoned in plastic recycling type containers. The couple had been ejected from the room. There were even snake eggs. The SPCA reported that the animals were mal-treated. Neighbors were shocked and outraged. It’s unbelievable that people could be so stupid and reckless.

THE AUTHOR: Patricia Bartlett

Patricia Bartlett is a writer – she is interested in animals, particularly reptiles, etc. She contributes regularly to Reptile and Amphibian Hobbyist. Along with her husband, Richard, Bartlett has coauthored more than 35 books on reptiles and amphibians.



To name a few, several are:

THE BOOK: Pythons [Paperback] by Patricia Bartlett (Author), Ernie Wagner (Author)

Dog and cat owners can be passionate about their pets. Some people, looking for the exotic, think that the smaller species in the Python family will make interesting pets. Although I cannot see how, if you are so inclined, perhaps, you might take a look at this manual, one of the Barron’s Complete Pet Owner’s Manual series. These books target youngsters as well as new pet owners, giving information and directions on housing, feeding, breeding, and health care. Each is written by a species expert. It also has pictures. The manual on pythons may not be my cup of tea, but it may be yours.


The loss of life is terrible. Since it was two little boys – it’s devastating news.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That pythons should not be kept as pets.
  • That there should be zero tolerance when it comes to putting other people’s life at risk.
  • That pythons should be banned.
  • That if pythons are to be allowed as pets, there then should be stricter laws on ownership of these animals. An owner should require a permit to have a python as a pet. That there should be tighter control on permits.
  • That snakes should not be kept as house pets. It must be kept in a zoo. As it grows, it becomes not only expensive to feed, but also riskier due to the chance that the mice may run away. More importantly, it may be more difficult to keep the snake in its tank-cage. It may escape.

The Point

I have some questions.

  • “How could such a vicious animal be kept in a pet shop in the same building below a residence?” (I answer: “A person is entitled to personal safety, especially in a home. Surely, he or she should be able to go to sleep without fear of being attacked by a strange and deadly animal.”)
  • “How could this business owner put everybody in the building at risk?”(I answer: “He should not be able to do so. It’s just common sense. Certain snakes, particularly pythons, are dangerous –they have taken the lives of people. No one should be allowed to have such an animal in a work place close to residences, especially if it is a multiple family building. Of course, these snakes have been known to escape by way of pipes into another apartment.

There have been many incidents where a snake has escaped. Hopefully, this terrible tragedy will help change the law.


Everyone should:

  1. Note that having a pet is supposed to be beneficial;
  2. Recognize that there is a reason certain pets are common in an urban setting;
  3. Ask questions about your proposed pet;
  4. Reject exotic when it brings a threat of harm to others: your family and neighbors and even to you, yourself;
  5. Pay attention, if you insist, to cage and tank your python, without any possibility of escape;
  6. Remember that you will pay a big price, emotionally and financially, if someone is injured or killed due to your pet;
  7. Lobby the authorities to bring in laws, rules and regulations prohibiting the practice of keeping such dangerous creatures as pets; and at the very least, obliging owners of such pets to take strict precautions.

If you want to keep a python in your city residence, think twice. I think that this behavior is dangerous to others.  However, if you do it anyway, you might be a snake yourself!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “python”; etc.

“A python is a constricting snake belonging to the Python (genus), or, more generally, any snake in the family Pythonidae (containing the Python genus)”.(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

“The Pythonidae, commonly known simply as pythons, from the Greek word python (πυθων), are a family of nonvenomous (though see the section “Toxins” below) snakes found in Africa, Asia and Australia.”(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


Table 1241. Household Pet Ownership: 2006
[In percent, except as indicated (72.1 represents 72,100,000).  Based on a sample survey of 47,000 households in 2006.]
ITEM Unit Dogs Cats Birds Horses
2006: Total companion pet population \1 Million 72.1 81.7 11.2 7.3
Number of households owning pets Million 43.0 37.5 4.5 2.1
..Percent of households owning companion pets \1 Percent 37.2 32.4 3.9 1.8
..Average number owned per household Number 1.7 2.2 2.5 3.5
Percent of households owning pets
..Annual household income: Under $20,000 Percent 30.7 30.1 4.4 1.5
..$20,000 to $34,999 Percent 37.3 33.6 4.2 1.7
..$35,000 to $54,999 Percent 39.8 34.1 4.4 2.1
..$55,000 to $84,999 Percent 42.8 35.5 3.7 1.9
..$85,000 and over Percent 42.1 33.3 3.7 2.3
Household size: \1 One person Percent 21.9 24.7 2.1 0.8
..Two persons Percent 37.6 33.4 3.9 1.7
..Three persons Percent 47.5 39.1 5.1 2.3
..Four persons Percent 51.9 38.5 5.4 2.7
..Five or more persons Percent 54.3 40.0 6.6 3.6
Veterinary care and expenditures
..Households obtaining veterinary care \2 Percent 82.7 63.7 13.9 61.1
..Average visits per household per year Number 2.6 1.7 0.3 2.2
Veterinary expenditures
..Expenditures per household per year (mean) Dollars 356 190 25 360
..Expenditures per animal (mean) Dollars 200 81 9 92

(Source: US Census Bureau) -


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Keep your pets safe in your vehicle

“(NC) Most dogs love to go for a car ride, but it’s up to their owners to ensure they ride along safely. We’ve all seen dogs sitting on a passenger’s lap or unrestrained in the back seat, so just as we’ve learned the importance of securing children when riding in a car, we also need to focus on pet safety.

Traveling short or long distances can be highly stressful, both for you and your animal best friend, says Colleen Skavinsky, the chief veterinary officer at Petsecure insurance. But with thoughtful preparation, you can ensure a safe and comfortable trip for everyone.

Petsecure offers the following tips to help protect you and your pet while traveling to the veterinarian, groomer, or even on a family vacation:

Cats and dogs should be restrained in the rear seat in pet harnesses or pet carriers that are secured by seat belts. During a collision or a sudden slam on the brakes, an unrestricted pet can be thrown about and possibly injured, or even injure a passenger.

Don’t let your pet roam freely in the car or sit on your lap. It’s dangerous for both of you. Airbags deployed in the front seat could harm your pet, as he or she could be crushed between you and the airbag, resulting in a serious or fatal injury.

Never let an animal run free in the bed of a pickup truck. This is a major cause of serious injury and death for animals in car accidents. A quick stop could send them out onto the street, or something interesting on the sidewalk could lead them to leap out into traffic.

Never leave an animal inside a car on a very cold or hot day. Even with the, an outside temperature of 20 C can result in a vehicle becoming hot enough to injure or kill a pet.

A helpful video is available at”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Healthy serving of fresh thinking for your pet’s food

“(NC) Choosing the best food for a dog or cat’s needs is an important consideration that can play a big part in their long-term health, however it’s not the end of the story when it comes to their proper feeding.

Michele Dixon, Health and Nutrition Specialist with Petcurean, says how you feed your pet is an important complement to the food itself. She serves up these tips for your pet to savour every moment during mealtime. You can get more helpful information at

Follow the feeding and transition guidelines on the pet food label and increase or decrease the amount you feed based on your pet’s activity level and weight.

The type of feeding bowl or dish matters. Choose a durable, non-porous material that’s easy to clean, won’t hold bacteria and can’t be chewed by your pet.

Use the right size dish for your pet to feed comfortably. For example, if your dog has a short snout, use a bowl with a sloped side, so it’s easier for them to get the food.

Avoid using the pet’s feeding bowl as a scooping utensil. Use a clean, scoop or spoon that’s only used for this purpose.

Wash pet food bowls and scooping utensils with soap and hot water after each use.

Refrigerate or discard any uneaten wet or canned pet food right away.”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on August 19th, 2013 Comments Off on PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*



Vol. 4,  No. 18, Tuesday, August 13, 2013

TITLE: “FIRST DAY OF (BACK TO) SCHOOL:  I  say, “let’s make this year the most educational ever!*” – UPDATE 2013


Continuing on in with last week’s theme, I will do an update of my post, first published on August 21, 2011, titled, “FIRST DAY OF (BACK TO) SCHOOL:  I  say, “let’s make this year the most educational ever!*”Now, I have a question … did everyone bring a pencil and paper. It’s on the list! If not, well … I won’t be cross. But you know dearies, you have to pay attention!

My mail box is now filled with flyers shouting “They’re going back” and “Back to School”. On TV, the commercials are announcing great sales for children’s wear and school supplies.  I therefore can’t help, but think about children and adolescents and the approaching first day of school. My book of the week is “Best-Ever Back-to-School Activities: 50 Winning and Welcoming Activities, Strategies, and Tips That Save You Time and Get Your School Year Off to a Sensational Start” [Paperback] by Elaine Israel. Hence my subject is the commencement of the school year. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on schooling and returning to class.)


I am thinking back to years past and the few weeks before the start of the school year.

As a mother of five year old girls – this was a long time ago – I remember this as a bitter-sweet time. Summer was over and the children’s day-long play time was then coming to an end; but they were also very excited to go back to school and see their friends. For me, life was about to go back to normal.  I started the preparations in the third week of August. I hit the stores to buy a few school supplies. I only bought the basics because I knew that my daughters would come home in the first week with a list of further items specified by the teacher. I also renewed the wardrobe of each child – I wanted them to look their best. In my perspective, if students started the year well-prepared, they would do better academically.

I also have another point of view. I spent 35 years working in a major college in my home town.

The time leading up to opening day was always hectic, but the staff was looking forward to what the new year would bring. Department chairpersons and teachers were calling often to make their final course preparations. Students were calling to solve scheduling problems. Each day, there was more and more to do. Finally day one arrives and students are everywhere.  I usually remarked that they looked younger and younger, although I saw myself as middle aged, not ageing much. In the first week, students got their course outlines and teachers started presenting the material.  You could feel the high energy in the air.  The serious students started their work as soon as possible – they don’t waste any time. I commend this attitude – this is the only way to get ahead.

As you know, I have another angle – I am a grandmother with a granddaughter and also a grandson.

Update 2012: More up-to-date, this September, my granddaughter now aged 3-1/2, is going into second year at a pre-kindergarten.  Her pre-school can be considered high-quality. This is so because the children become familiar with letters, numbers and shapes. The children also learn to share and socialize.  The well-trained teachers and stimulating activities are making a difference with my granddaughter.  She asks many intelligent questions and I am sure the pre-school can be credited, to a certain extent, for her advancement.  Important as well, she is looking forward to going back to class. I understand from  her that she wants to see her little friends … but there is this one little boy in particular, … apparently, he’s very cute … I’ll keep you posted!

Update 2013: This coming September, my grandson at age 2-2/3, is also going to a pre-kindergarten for the first time.  He will be attending the same pre-school as his sister.  He is soooooo excited.  Pre school can develop a child’s social skills, but he is a “social butterfly” already. He will enjoy being with other children his age.

THE AUTHOR: Elaine Israel

Elaine Israel is an author of children’s books. She is also an editor. She is versatile. She knows how to talk to kids. She is therefore able to give pointers to school teachers.

Some books are:

  • Hilary Duff (Today’s Superstars: Entertainment)
  • Election 2000 – Time for Kids Readers
  • The Official Study Guide for All Sat Subject Tests
  • Celebrate the Winter Holidays: Sensational Activities & Helpful Background Information That Help Kids Learn About & Appreciate Five Important Holidays
  • The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2002

THE BOOK: “Best-Ever Back-to-School Activities: 50 Winning and Welcoming Activities, Strategies, and Tips That Save You Time and Get Your School Year Off to a Sensational Start” [Paperback] by Elaine Israel (Author)

This is a book addressing primary grade teachers. Israel gives them pointers on HOW-TO achieve a better launch of the school year. Her chapters signify her priorities. According to her, these are: 1) Introduction: the First Day & Getting to know you; 2) Mini- Books; 3) Making books;  4) Bulletin boards, 5) Perfect Poems: A Song to Sing; Riddle poems; 6)  Top Ten Start- of- the- Year Stories. Here’s a ‘for instance’, under the “First Day”, Israel grabs you with a sub-title: “Build community and establish routines with activities that will make the first day of school a stunning success.” Now that’s a great goal – I buy into that.  Wouldn’t any parent? She follows that with a sub–heading, “Alumni visits: and explains how “To give your students an idea of what the coming year will bring.” She also wants to break the ice between future school friends. Her idea is called “Good Morning” Match. As per Israel, she thinks that “Each child’s chubby holds a welcoming surprise with an activity that makes it easy for new classmates to meet one another or get reacquainted and share a favourite book.” She also offers a “Calendar surprise” She explains that “a surprise awaits your students each day with this easy to-make this lift- the- flap- calendar”.  It appears to be a continuing interest builder, helping making school fresh. The book seems to be a winner. Read it and become aware and help your child to succeed.


The future of your child is substantially dependent upon his/her schooling. You should do everything possible to ensure that his/her education is the best that it could be.

Personal Comments

Every parent needs information to help their kids in their educational career.  A parent should know what to expect by the day he/she drops the child in the school yard as they march into school at the start of the school year. I think that armed with this information, a parent could prepare his/her child better and of course, better preparation should result in better grades. And the student has a greater chance to excel in his/her school career.

With young students, a parent needs to be hands on closely monitoring his/her child in school work and activities.  With teenage students, a parent needs to supervise their offspring attentively. They need to review school correspondence and reports. They need to ask questions and have a yearlong dialogue, insisting upon results. With college age students, initiate discussions and offer recommendations.

Teachers, principals, school board members and educators at all levels will tell you that the first few days of the school year are key. What happens and doesn’t happen could spell a good year or a bad one.

The Point

Your child’s education is VERY important. You have a role.  The school year is about to start. You need to become informed and active right away.


Every parent of a student should:

1. Consider the appropriate school for your child/adolescent, today and tomorrow and after tomorrow; (More about this next week.)
2. Research the curriculum of the coming school year – encouraging your child to get a head start on the reading is always a good idea;
3. Think about after school; to this end,
3.1 Inquire into the extra- curricular activities being offered  – signing up early is another good idea;  try to have one physical activity/sports plus one hobby/interest club.
4. Shop for back to school wisely; in this regard,
4.1 Look for the sales at major retailers – school supplies are usually discounted to get you into the store.
4.2 Buy hi-value clothing: strong seams, good fabrics and multipacks; and supplement the new articles with spruced- up hand me downs from siblings and close family;
5. Plan to start the school year by serving up nutritious meals; to this end,
5.1 Make a complete breakfast for the youngsters – they need fuel to learn;
5.2  Use a variety of food groups: high food value, low calories/cholesterol;
6. Think about routine; more precisely,
6.1 Limit usage of TV, computer, Internet, video games, etc.; nevertheless, keep in mind that educational TV programming is beneficial – so is research on the web!

6.2 Reserve quiet time, reading time, etc.
6.3 Set age appropriate bedtimes in order to permit sleep hours sufficient for age;
7. Get involved at school:
7.1 Introduce yourself to the principal and teachers;
7.2 Join parent-teacher school group; etc.

Your child (and you) can and should enjoy this time in school.  Help him/her to succeed and be happy. I hope that you give me an A+ on this blog post!

Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours? *
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

PREVIEW (now, tentatively Monday, August 20th 2012): In our province, we are currently having a general election. Health care is a major topic. In the United States. Medicare is a key issue in the U.S. presidential election now in full swing. I am not sure whether it’s what the doctor ordered, but I have SOMETHING to say on the subject. I’ll give you an appointment to come next Monday August 20th about 11:00 A.M. If you don’t show, there will be a charge…just kidding. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on Health.)

PREVIEW (now, tentatively Monday, September 17th 2012): I will return to the romance theme. I am hearing a lot about Fifty Shades of Grey by T.L. James. I say: “Now, that’s a VERY spicy meat ball!” I want to add my two cents to the discussion. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on dating, relationships and marriage.)

P.S. Big News: I am so excited – I’m told that THIS WEEK, we will be uploading the new look Antoinette’s Page* and Antoinette’s Blog*. There are more big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta

-Web Tech:
The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




S & R* QUOTE #1: – Heinrich Heine
“Experience is a good school. But the fees are high.”
(Source:  Wisdom Quotes) –

S & R* QUOTE #2:  Rabbinical saying
“Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time.”
(Source:  Wisdom Quotes) –

S & R* QUOTE #3: Virginia Woolf
“The first duty of a lecturer: to hand you after an hour’s discourse a nugget of pure truth to wrap up between the pages of your notebooks, and keep on the mantlepiece forever.”
(Source:  Wisdom Quotes) –

For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “school”; “student”; “education”; etc.


“A school is an institution designed for the teaching of students (or “pupils”) under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is commonly compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools. The names for these schools vary by country (discussed in the Regional section below), but generally include primary school for young children and secondary school for teenagers who have completed primary education. An institution where higher education is taught, is commonly called a university college or university.”
(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“A student is a learner, or someone who attends an educational institution. In some nations, the English term (or its cognate in another language) is reserved for those who attend university, while a schoolchild under the age of eighteen is called a pupil in English (or an equivalent in other languages). In its widest use, student is used for anyone who is learning.”
(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“Education in the general sense is any act or experience that has a formative effect on the mind, character, or physical ability of an individual. In its technical sense, education is the process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills, and values from one generation to another. Etymologically, the word education is derived from educare (Latin) “bring up”, which is related to educere “bring out”, “bring forth what is within”, “bring out potential” and ducere, “to lead”.[1]
(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


Back-to-School Shopping
“7.2 billion

The amount of money spent at family clothing stores in August 2009. Only in December were sales significantly higher. Similarly, sales at bookstores in August 2009 totaled $2.5 billion, an amount approached in 2009 only by sales in January.
Source: Monthly Retail Trade and Food Services <>

“For back-to-school shopping, choices of retail establishments abound: In 2007, there were 27,326 family clothing stores, 7,036 children and infants clothing stores, 27,213 shoe stores, 9,754 office supply and stationery stores, 23,756 sporting goods stores, 10,635 bookstores and 10,116 department stores.”
Source: County Business Patterns: 2007 <>

“76 million
The number of children and adults enrolled in school throughout the country in October 2008 — from nursery school to college. They comprised 27 percent of the entire population 3 and older.
Source: School Enrollment — Social and Economic Characteristics of Students: October 2008″ <>

31 million
Average number of children participating each month in the national school lunch program in 2008.
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service, as cited in the Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2010, Table 558″ <>

19.1 million
The projected number of students enrolled in the nation’s colleges and universities this fall. This is up from 13.8 million 20 years ago.
Source: U.S. National Center for Education Statistics as cited in the Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2010, Table 214:” <>
(Source: US Census Bureau) –


S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1:

Top of the class and talk of the campus conquerin university this semester

Weekends at the cottage are starting to get cooler and that means autumn is on its way. For students heading back to school, it’s time to pack up the car, dust off the suitcases and get ready for classes again. While they don’t have to worry about hitting the books just yet, students who are starting to think about how to get organized might also want to think about the technology tools that can help. Whether it’s staying productive in the classroom, or keeping entertained on campus, technology can play a supporting role.

Mini fridges, twin-sized beds and a couple of drawers to yourself; college life can mean having little to no personal space. Limiting the number of devices you bring to campus is a smart option. Tablets like the affordable BlackBerry PlayBook are all-in-one productivity and entertainment devices. It’s portable, has Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, email, social media, and tons of apps. It can also connect to an HD TV to watch movies, play games or work on a class presentation on a larger screen.

Life on CampusStudents are always on the move. No matter where they head this semester, roaming charges can make phone calls and text messages expensive. Skip the fees by using instant messaging apps like BlackBerry Messenger or social media apps like Facebook and Twitter on your smartphone; it’s the perfect way for the family to stay close without anyone’s wallet having to suffer.Late night pizza runs are also a rite of passage for many students. Using a smartphone and apps can help students keep in shape. AdidasmiCoach, Endomondo and Calorie Tracker by LiveSTRONG can serve as an on-campus personal trainer, motivator, music player, and nutritionist.College life is go-go-go and it comes with a whole new load of responsibilities; grocery shopping, class lectures, studying in the library and maybe even a part-time job. With calendars, internet browsers, alarm clocks and notepads, your smartphone really can be your all-in-one task management tool. Stay on top of things and ensure that you still have time to hang out with new friends on the weekends.

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2:

How to ease bank-to-school for your child

The sweet scent of summer may still be lingering in the air, but your child’s first day of school is fast approaching. Transitioning from the blissfully hazy days of summer to the structure of school days can be a tough one, but it doesn’t have to be. Sally Morse, director of creative services for window fashions company, Hunter Douglas, reviews some tips to make back to school preparation easier for both you and your child.

Establish a schedule – After all those carefree summer days, it’s important to incorporate a little more structure into your child’s day to ease the back-to-school transition. Begin by slowly adjusting bedtime, wake-up time and eating schedules, so that by the time school starts your child will be accustomed to a routine.

Involve Your Kids – The more your child feels a part of the back-to-school planning, the more enthusiastic he or she is likely to become. This could include allowing them to help with setting up play dates, shopping for school supplies or buying new outfits for school.

Goals – Brainstorming a few goals for the school year with your kids is a great way to be involved in their academic career, but also allow them to work toward something on their own. Try discussing one academic goal and one social goal for the semester.

Study Area – Finding the right space in your home is critical for productive and effective studying. Every child learns differently and retention of information is largely dependent on the environment and mood that he or she is working in. To make an improvement at the window, take a look at the Hunter Douglas Silhouette window shadings, which are now available with a cordless lifting system that make it especially ideal for homes with young children.

Mark the Calendar – Before school begins for your child, get the calendar out and write down events and holidays to look forward to as a family. Those school vacations are not only pertinent to your schedule; your child will enjoy feeling included in the planning of family trips or weekend getaways. For example, mark down a date in late October to go Halloween costume shopping, or anything else that may be meaningful to your child. Although the last days of summer are quickly slipping away, this will remind your child of all the exciting things in store for the fall.

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on August 13th, 2013 Comments Off on FIRST DAY OF (BACK TO) SCHOOL: I SAY, “LET’S MAKE THIS YEAR THE MOST EDUCATIONAL EVER!* – UPDATE 2013

Update – August 9, 2013

Dear Readers,

My apologies for not posting a blog this week.  I’m so busy unpacking that I haven’t had the time to put up a new blog.  I’ll be back next week with a new blog.

See you then.


Posted by on August 9th, 2013 Comments Off on Update – August 9, 2013