Thursday, December 29, 2011

For the Year of 2012...

New years come and new years go,
Pieces of time all in a row.
As we live our life, every second and minute,
We know we're privileged to have you in it.
Our appreciation never ends
For our greatest blessings: our family and friends.

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Santo (Sacred Songs) - Juan Diego Flórez sings "Cantique De Noel"

Merry Christmas to All!

  (Esteban Murillo - 1618-1682, Adoration of the Shepherds, Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain)

Christmas Bells
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The worlds repeat
Of peace of earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of the Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace of earth, good-will to men!

Till ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth" I said;
"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men."

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Warm message from Antrartica...

This picture of the Emperor Penguins is from the 2011 National Geographic Photo Contest. How appropriate for our Christmas Season!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

On Thanksgiving Day

Hard for me to believe that Thanksgiving is here again and we are approaching Advent.

I'm thinking about my far-away family and American friends and sending my prayers along with my "Happy Thanksgiving" wishes.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Staney, Meuse in France, waiting for the end of hostilities. This photo was taken at 10:58 a.m., on November 11, 1918, two minutes before the armistice ending of World War I went into effect.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

National Alpaca Farm Days

The Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association declared National Alpaca Farm Days on September 24-25 2011 to give people the opportunity to visit and learn about alpacas and meet people living this satisfying and rewarding lifestyle. Every farm has their unique style of welcoming and educating visitors.

Alpaca is a domesticated spices of South American camelid. It resembles a small llama in appearance. Alpacas are considerably smaller than llamas and are bred specially for their fiber. Alpaca fiber is used for making knitted and woven items, similar to wool. These items include blankets, sweaters, hats, gloves, scarves, a wide variety of textiles and ponchos in South America, and sweaters, socks, coats and bedding in other parts of the world. The fiber comes in more than 52 natural colors.

The first picture was taken in an Alpaca Farm at the Central Coast of California by my son who visited this farm with his wife on the National Farm Day.

One of my granddaughters is a Graduate student of an University in Cleveland, Ohio, and she took advantage of the occasion to visit a near-by Alpaca Farm.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Ode of Remembrance

World War I, or the First World War, formerly called The Great War, was a major war centered in Europe that began in August 1914 and lasted until November 1918.

The poet Laurence Binyon wrote "For the Fallen (first published in September 1914) while sitting on the cliffs between Pentire Point and The Rumps. A stone plaque was erected in 2001 to commemorate the fact. The plaque bears the inscription "For the Fallen/Composed on these cliffs 1914". The plaque also bears below this the fourth stanza (sometimes referred as the Ode of Remembrance) of the poem:

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

The poem honored the World War I British war dead of that time and in particular the British Expeditionary Force, which has by then already high casualty rates on the developing Western Front. Over time, the third and fourth stanzas of the poem were claimed as a tribute to all casualties of war, regardless of state.

Monday, August 1, 2011

My Dahlias....

While most of the states are suffering from the extended heat, here in Oregon we are having a pleasant, moderate summer. Our spring was cool and very wet, therefore my garden looks like a jungle now. I am spending few hours every day pulling weeds and trimming flowers and bushes, and by the evenings I am aching and exhausted. But my flowers are exceptionally beautiful this summer.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Do you know what this is?

This statue currently stands outside the Iraqi palace, now home of the 4th Infantry Division. It will eventually shipped home and put into the memorial museum in Fort Hood, Texas.

The statue was created by an Iraqi artist named Kalat, who for years was forced by Saddam Hussein to make the many hundreds of bronze busts of Suddam that dotted Baghdad. Kalat was so grateful for the America's liberation of his country; he melted 3 of the heads of the fallen Saddam and made the statue as a memorial to the American soldiers and their fallen warriors.

Kalat worked on this memorial night and day for several months. To the left of the kneeling soldier is a small Iraqi girl giving the soldier comfort as he mourns the loss of his comrade in arms.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Silverton Reservoir (Oregon)

Although not so popular as the nearby Silver Falls State Park (which is upstream from this reservoir), this small park offers some beautiful locations for hiking, fishing, kayaking, and peaceful spots to set up a hammock for a nice afternoon nap.

My younger son, George flew up from California to be with me during my second eye surgery in a month. He loves the outdoors and took me for a little hiking to the reservoir on the day after my surgery. Nothing makes me to heal faster than the fresh air in a beautiful surrounding.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Summer is here again...

A beautiful bouquet from Thormane, Margit Kiss, Hungarian artist (Eger, 1901 - Nagybanya, December 24, 1977).

Monday, June 13, 2011

Don't Cry for Me Argentina, Elaine Paige

This video is available again. She gives me so much joy, I would like to share her with you.

Friday, May 27, 2011

On Memorial Day...

Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May (May 30 in 2011). Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. soldiers who died while in the military service. First enacted to honor Union and Confederate soldiers following the American Civil War, it was extended after World War I to honor Americans who died in all wars.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

My Choice 367 - Lucia Popp: Solveig's Song (Grieg)

My previously publisheded video of this song is not available anymore. This newest version is made up with beautiful photoes of Switzerland, simple and beauutiful, just like Greig's Solveig's Song from "Peer Gynt".

Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Mother and Child by Francis Coates Jones, 1885.

Gentre-figure painter Francis Coates Jones, born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1857, first expressed interest in art in 1876 when visiting Edwin Abbey. In the autumn of 1887 he went to Paris to study at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter!

My brother sent me this greeting card from Hungary and I would like to share it with you with my best wishes for Easter.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Christ before Pilate

Munkacsy, 1880, - Hungarian National Gallery, Budapest.

Mihaly Munkacsy (February 20, 1844 - May 1, 1900) was a Hungarian painter, who lived in Paris and earned an international reputation with his large scale biblical paintings.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Walk with me by the water...

A friend of mine sent this to me, I found it very inspiring.


Oh gosh, I forgot the words..

Recovering my posting...

While I was editing my blog the other day, I accidentally deleted my two latest postings! I guess, I was experiencing my "senior moments".

Here is my March 17, Saint Patrick's Day posting:

May I express my best wishes to all my Irish friends and readers. God bless you all!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The windows of St. Mary Magdalen Chapel

This lovely chapel was built during the WWI years from the contributions and dreams of the Camarillo Family in Camarillo, California. The most notable fixtures of this Spanish style building are its magnificent 13 stained windows. These azure, crimson, green and gold windows tell a double story - one of the life of Christ, the other of a world at war.

While on a trip to Europe, Juan Camarillo selected the windows in Munich, Germany. The year was 1913, and the rumbles of the continent gathering its strength for conflict were growing with each passing day. Somewhere between the studios of glassblower F. X. Zettler of Munich and the church on a hilltop in faraway Camarillo, the stained glass windows were lost. Despite the best efforts of the Camarillo family through consuls and ambassadors, the windows appeared to be lost forever. Juan Camarillo feared they were at the bottom of the sea.

One day a letter arrived from a German official. This official in Munich had been noticing several large crates staked outside a building with Juan's name on them. He had written Juan several letters and finally one got through at the end of Word War 1. Much to the joy and relief of everyone, the lost windows had been found. However, it was a painfully slow and long trek to Los Angeles, and then on to Camarillo, before they were finally replacing the temporary, heavy paper windows in the thick brick and plastered chapel walls in 1919.

Our marriage was officiated in this beautiful chapel in 1985. I'm dedicating this story to my dearly loved husband's memory who departed three years ago.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

On Valentine's Day

Wishing the happiest Valentine's Day to all my Blog Friends!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Old lady Hits Robbers With Handbag and takes them down

WOW! Where she got her energy from? I bet she doesn't play Pogo all day like some of us old girls do...

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Vesti la Giubba

The great Bjorling sings from Leoncavallo's "I Pagliacci", "Vesti la Guibba", possibly in 1953.

Jussi Bjorling (1911-1960) was a Swedish operatic tenor and a highly regarded singer. He was one of the few non-Latin tenors to rival the Italian dominance of the opera world a that time.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year - Happy 2011!

As an old Hungarian custom, lencse leves (lentil soup) eaten on New Years Day will bring financial success. But it is delicious on cold ordinary winter days also.


1 1/2 cups dry lentils
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cooking oil or lard
2 heaped tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon paprika
4 frankfurters, sliced
1 teaspoon vinegar or 2 tablespoon sour cream

Wash the lentils in cold water and pick them over, discarding any shriveled or black ones. Pleace them in a cooking pot and add 6 cups of water, bay leaves and salt. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover with lid and simmer for 35 minutes. Add in the carrots. Bring back to simmer and continue cooking for about 25-30 more minutes. Take out the bay leaves.

For the roux, heat up the oil or lard in a 3-quart saucepan and saute the onion until it is translutent. Stir in the paprika.

Stir in the flour and cook on low heat for 3 more minutes, stirring constantly.

Poor the hot soup into the roux, stirring gently all the while. Add in the frankfurters and cook uncovered on low heat for 10 more minutes. Stir in the vinegar or sour cream right before serving.