The Happy Hippo
Ants Story
The Emu Went To Africa
Augie the Baby Antelope

How To
Exercises On Your Back
Find Something To Do

Significant Others
Something To Care For
Caring For Plants

Computer Like A Woman
Laws if alone
How To Boil Water

Handling Loss
Handling Sense of Guilt
Dealing With Loss

From Grandmother Part I
Foods to Double-up
Eating Out
Light Lunches
Eating Right
Tips On Food/Vitamins
Frozen Bread and Pancakes In A Jar

Never Leave Keys

Computer Tips
Blogging & Experiencing The Web
Type &Instant Save
Backing Up & Frozen Computer

The Everyday
Laundry-Do It or Not
Getting Out


From Grandmother With Love Part II


Don’t share this recipe with anyone so you will be all set at gift giving time.

1 cup powdered milk
½ cup Epsom salts
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3-4 drops of your favorite essential oil (optional, but desirable and available at most health food stores)

Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl. You may then pour directly into your tub as you run a warm bath, or you may choose to place on a square of cheese cloth and tie securely with a ribbon. Frankly it seems to me that it would slowly sift through the cheesecloth. But whatever works for you.

Yield: Two terrific soaks.

One container Sanalac dry milk (2 lbs = +/- 8 cups)
4 cups Epsom salts
½ cup baking soda
3 Tbsp cornstarch
16+ drops of essential oil
Shake together in a large plastic pickle jar (I threw a metal mixing spoon in to really give the batch a good mix) and then let it mellow for several days. Make tags to adorn your great gift. I bought decorative bottles at Cheap Harry’s – fill, cork and dip in wax.

LUXURY MILK BATH Cleopatra took relaxing bathes in scented waters and so can you. Pour about one cup of your lavender milk refresher into warm water. Lean back and enjoy the soak of your life.
Kit Weiss


Yes, you can make your own clotted cream.

Forget all that talk about spring’s arrival and your mind turning to flights of fancy. This spring took its own sweet time and now that it is here let’s get earnest about being outdoors. This is the time to invite all the other cooped up citizens out into the yard and get serious about tea. What is tea if it isn’t the best (and by the way – simplest!)

Cut: 1/3 C. butter into 3 C. flour, ½ C. sugar and 2 Tbsp. baking powder into pea size bits.
In another bowl mix together: 1 C. cream, 2 eggs and 1/3 C. white raisins.
Mix everything together. DON’T OVER MIX. It must be moist enough to really hold together. Roll it out good and thick. Cut out with any nice size can – or if you really are a cook, go ahead and use that round cookie cutter you have at the back of the drawer. Place in a pan that allows them to touch. If they don’t, they will spread out all over the place.
Now for the important bit: Let it rest for 45 minutes.
Bake at 325° for 20 – 25 minutes. Makes about 12 or maybe 10 or whatever.

ENGLISH CLOTTED CREAM This is actually a Devonshire Cream recipe taught to the Devonshire people by the pixies. Hey, I’m not making this stuff up! This must be made the day before (or two or three). Then when you serve your scones be sure to put the jam on first and the cream on top. Mix 1 ½ cups of whipping cream with 1 ½ quarts of milk and put in a wide shallow pan. Leave in a cool place for several hours (not the refrigerator) so the cream can rise. I simply leave it on the stove. Cook on the lowest heat for about an hour. The cream will become a rich golden color. Carefully remove from heat, cover and place in a cool place overnight. Don’t use a lipped cookie sheet. I tried that and carrying it to the basement to cool overnight was a disaster. In the morning, use a slotted spoon to skim off the cream. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator. The leftover milk can be used for cooking. What ? I can’t imagine. This is so yummy and so rich I think I will go make some. If you make it several days ahead, it firms up quite nicely.

You know that famous close, “Bon Appetit”? Well I’ll just close with, “Good Luck.”
Kit Weiss


My Request To All
Grandmothers Out There

We need some advice, but first of all, you have to be a grandmother to give it. With more and more young people on their own and many families split up by jobs and just the sheer mobility of modern society, we need help. We've called it "From Grandmother With Love". If you have a recipe for those who are alone and do not have the time to cook or just do not know how, and some advice or...
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Mediterranean Sunset © Copyright 2007 Morgan Thomas all rights reserved
A bimonthly     MARCH/APRIL 2008
Guide To Living Alone and Surviving
In This Issue:
Volume 2 No. 2
Dealing With Loss ~ You Owe It To Yourself ~ 10 Things To Never Do In Kitchen
Recipes: Pancakes ~ Recipes from Grandmother ~ Making Notes The Easy Way
Microsoft Search Dog

You Owe It To Yourself


I have run into all sorts of people who have said that they can not do what they always wanted to do because of - and then they give a number of reasons. It's as if they are measuring their lives with what they did not accomplish instead of reaching out to fulfill some dream. It is rare to hear of someone who is getting a degree at the age of 76 for instance. But not rare to hear someone young saying I don't have the time, or the money, or the opportunity... We should not let any particular barrier, stand in our way...    read full post

© Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

Article of the Month

Dealing With Loss and With Being Alone

Being alone is a new situation for many individuals. This is particularly true whether it is because of a sudden loss or even when we have made the decision to go it alone for some reason. It is natural that we should feel the need for some support and some help. There are a number of rules which should be followed to help in the coping process.

  • Do not reject all support which may be offered and do not shy away from asking for help when you feel you need it.

  • Talk to someone with a sympathetic ear at least once in a while during the initial healing process or the initial time alone. Being alone is not easy and we all need some support, some understanding of our circumstances. There are certain friends, and many individuals, groups, professionals who can listen and provide some perspective on your particular situation. Seek them out. This also includes talking on the phone with someone else who is experiencing the same situation although perhaps in a different way.

  • Allow yourself to let it out. Emotions will come to the surface and you must allow yourself to feel them. Bottling up your emotions, fears, feelings of loneliness will only add to the length of the healing or acclimatization process.

  • And very important - know and understand that letting out your feelings and experiencing the pain and the loss, the frustration, the anger, or the fear of being alone, or not being able to cope are all part of the healing process.

  • Keep yourself busy. Allowing yourself to be unoccupied makes it even more difficult to cope.

  • Arrange not to be alone all of the time. Aloneness tends to feed on itself.

  • Perform the processes of coping which means doing all of those things which you were in the habit of doing before: Reading, studying, working, doing a project, talking with friends, going to events, traveling, just getting out, pursuing a hobby, exercising, walking, etc.

  • Do things which force you to take care of yourself, to make yourself presentable both to yourself and to others. - like planning to go out, to go visit a friend, to go to an event or a movie, to eat out even if it is alone, or have coffee with a friend.

  • Go to places which interest you or previously interested you. You may feel that you are no longer attuned because of the circumstances, but it may be that the surroundings of a once enjoyed activity will help the healing process.

  • Join a group, or take a class, or become involved in planning and/or participating in an event. In other words, place yourself within an organized structure where you will be supported because you are helping the group by participating as an active member in fulfilling a purpose.

  • Place yourself in a position to be of help to someone or something. "The most helpful activity during the most painful season of loss is to reach out and help someone. Meeting their need becomes an instant source of healing in your need." Submitted by Gail Thomas

  • Establish routines which will involve the processes of keeping it all together: Cleaning the area in which you live, washing your clothes, buying and preparing meals, brushing your teeth - in other words - fulfilling the normal processes of life. The most important part is getting yourself to do it on a regular basis.

  • Create something. It does not matter what it is as long as it expresses some part of you. It is important that it not be a one-time thing although this can often develop into serialized one-time things or a full time activity. Some might say that it expresses our inner self – whether it is creating a papier-mâché something, writing a story or letters, choreographing a dance, expressing oneself on a blog, taking photographs. The important thing is that, whether or not someone else sees it, we are in a sense recreating ourselves and extending ourselves out and beyond into the world. It is an affirmation which provides strength to go through the process of grieving or of conquering our sense of aloneness, or getting used to a new situation.

    General things which often help during a time of loss or aloneness:

  • Make a list to things which should be done and set about reducing the list,
  • Talk to the loved one or to a significant other even if only in your mind.
  • Keep promises which were made to a significant other or to yourself
  • Do what the other would have wanted or would have approved.
  • Keep your own counsel???
  • Do things which will improve your life, or will make it easier or at least possible under the new circumstances.
  • Keep busy. It really does not matter what. Better if it is something that interests you but at times like this it is sometimes difficult to really get interested in something.

    read full post

    © Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved
  • 10 Things You Should Never
    Do In The Kitchen

    1. Never cook with your eyes closed unless you have had a lot of practice. No, I take that back. Never do it. I did it this morning very early and I wasn't awake yet. You miss all of the emotion of seeing what you make in the unfolding process, as well as your failures crumble before your very eyes. Cooking is an emotional experience. Otherwise, why bother - there are a lot of cans, jars, paper bags around just waiting to be opened.

    2. Cooking should never be bounded by four walls - it is the open vista as far as you can see in front of you as you let your mind wander. Never always know what you are going to cook. Cuts off all possibility of something new and interesting emerging.

    3. Never leave everything in the sink to be washed before you start cooking the next meal. Kills all of the creative juices.

    4. When you are in a hurry, always stop and clean up what just spilled on the floor. Otherwise, you will have to clean the kitchen, the hallway, the bedroom, the study...

    5. Never talk on the phone as you cook. You need all of your attention on what you are doing. Remember you are playing with fire, hot stuff, knives, steam, stuff that rolls, slides, breaks, cracks, squashes, falls - you get the picture.

    6. Always be aware that the kitchen is not only your favorite place. There are other creatures in the world who think that this is their heaven on earth. You may not want them there but be considerate. They are only trying to live and have a full life like you. Instead of trying to get rid of them, keep it clean and they will decide on their own to go to the "restaurant" next door. At least give them an option.

    7. If you don't throw out the garbage every time you go into the kitchen, put all your eatable garbage in the refrigerator. You heard me. Covered of course. I use empty ice cream cartons. And be sure to do a clean sweep of all those every so often. It really does cut down on the under population when they say to themselves - Oh no, not that into the frig also!

    8. Never think that you can pick up everything with one hand, touch everything without protection, taste anything because it is just a little of the hot stuff, and just throw spices, and the contents of cans or bottles into the mix straight from the container (most containers are not measuring instruments - they are storage units).

    9. Never tell everyone what you are going to cook unless you really know what you are doing (but even then there are mistakes). Surprise them and maybe even yourself. Also you won't have to make excuses for what did not turn out the way it should have.

    10. Don't press me. I'm working on it.

    © Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

    Recipe of the Month

    Burgher's Delight © Copyright 2007 Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

    Pancakes are not glamorous or high fashion, but on cold winter mornings they are exactly what is needed to help us continue. They are fast, take amost no preparatory time, and with no imagination you have a full meal sitting in front of you. True, unless you have special ingredients inside, they do not normally provide you with all of the nutrients or the protein you need but that is easily remedied. The up side is that at the end of the meal, you know that you have eaten breakfast. I make mine in my "miracle jar" (an old mayonnaise jar which is small enough to fit in one hand). I put water in the bottom, dump in the flour (do not do it the other way around or it becomes a real problem getting the flour at the bottom to thoroughly mix. By the way, the flour, in my case, is self rising wheat). Then I put whatever else I want inside, close the lid, shake and pour into the hot frying pan with enough butter to really cover the bottom of the pan, or smoking hot oil. Otherwise, as I found out, you end up eating half baked scraps of whatever you can scrap off the bottom. Case in point above.

    Cold omelette
    Muffler for a cold omelette with earmuffs © Copyright 2007 Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

    It was so cold that the omelette froze when it hit the plate. Quickly made a blanket for it and put on banana earmuffs.

    Cottage pancake with Raspberry Jam
    Sugar Pancake © Copyright 2007 Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

    Normal pancake with sugar added and supposedly a drop of vanilla (got to find out what that is for) but this time I don't have to worry because I forgot to add it. For the true story of vanilla, which comes from a particular type of flower - an orchid, read Vanilla from the Very interesting story. After reading it you will know things that most people never even thought of knowing. The cottage covers a hole because I did not have enough butter in the pan. And the jam - that's the best jam you can buy (at least where I shop). There are two things not to skimp on, and the other is really good olive oil.

    © Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved


    Photo of the Month

    As the sun sets over the Mediterranean  © Copyright 2008 Morgan Thomas All rights reserved
    As The Sun Sets
    Sunset over the Mediterranean 2008

    click on these for stories, tips, recipes, articles
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    About and Contact
    Me © Copyright 2007 Morgan Thomas all rights reserved About

    I wish to thank the following persons
    for help in editing and suggestions for this issue: Sonia Penny, Kit Weiss

    Some Tips

    Making Notes The Easy Way

    Do you print something out so that you can make written comments on it on the sides?
    Unless you print out so that you can lie on your favorite divan OR ON THE FLOOR OR WHATEVER, and possibly go to sleep while reading, I have found that it is far easier to do the folllowing, and then there is no retyping, and it all goes much faster.

    First, load the manuscript or whatever onto the screen and collapse the window to a little more than half the screen widthwise but full screen lengthwise.

    Second, click on File and open up a txt file which you collapse into the other half of the screen. Just make sure that they do not overlap too much or you will constantly be having to click back and forth. Make your notes as you scroll through the text. To make it even better, use a word file to make notes so that you can make corrections to your notes as you write. Third, be sure you use word wrap if your are using a txt file.

    Tricks to help organize: Instead of using a txt file, I sometimes open an email which will allow me to check for spelling. This also give me the possibility of using all sorts of direct links, underlines, italics, colors, etc. Just be sure that you do not have an address up at the top or you might accidentally mail your notes to who knows who.

    1. Unless you are commenting on the text line by line, make a series of headings for what you are doing, such as topics, or types of comments, or types of errors. Shift between them to write your comments.

    2. Underline important points or write in caps

    3. Use copy to insert important parts of text into your notes. constantly save. See below the replication of a previosus month's note on save while typing.

    4. Before you do any final editing, make a copy of your notes so that you will not lose anything s you move lines around and delete and add for the final presentation.

    5. Use numbers or letters or

  • if it's to go into a html file so that you will have some order to your thoughts and headings.
    Saves me a lot of time, and when I am finished reading and making notes, I am finished.

    Hold the presses! I just ran across some new software by Adobe called Buzzword. You create a document on-line which is then stored in their servers, and can contact it from anywhere if you are on the move or at work, etc. It's free, and it's private. You can share the writing of it or even the reading with someone by just emailing them, and they can enter that one document while all the rest of your documents remain private. It has all of the features you would ever need in order to partition the page, create text, add pictures, retrieve older versions of the doc, upload files into it, and a lot still coming as they add to it. And, the part I like, saving as I type using Ctrl and s. It is part of the new interface between the web and the PC. Give it a try at

    Some Excellent References

  • Excellent notes on making notes
  • Note Taking Systems suggested by above reference.
  • 50 Ways To Take Notes All sorts of ideas most of which I have not tried but one or two may be the answer for you. Suggested by Deburca Blog

    © Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved


    The Microsoft Search Dog?

    If there ever was a question of the possibility of forming relationships with robots, I think that it is has been solved by the search dog. I found myself closing the window down so he could go back to sleep the other day. No, I do not lack for human companship, but we can assume things for inanimate objects which we attribute to living beings. Anyway, I caught him cleaning his bowl the other day. Never saw that before. Really made me laugh. Anyway, if you ever need a friend and one is not available in the outside world, try doing a search. He's right there, wagging his tail and waiting.

    © Copyright 2008 J. Morgan Thomas All rights reserved

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