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Member since: Thu Oct 21, 2004, 05:06 PM
Number of posts: 20,121

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Merry Merry to all my photo forum friends

There is a place half an hour away that has a three acre (I'm guessing) Christmas lights extravaganza. The family that puts it on is stopping it after 50 years. It is Kitsch to the max and so wonderful it has to be chronicled.
But not by me.
So for my Christmas post I show two photos from it, and a shot of Lola in the arms of my friend Danny, who ran the Bernie campaign here in the area, and who still visits.

Thanks for your care and attention not just through the year but always. I am seriously augmented by being part of you, and I learn all the time.
Happy Holidays, take care of yourselves and those around you, and let's all hope for the best in the next (dreaded) year.



Source: NY Times

For his envoy to Israel, Donald Trump has chosen a supporter of West Bank settlements who has insulted left-leaning American Jews

President-elect Donald J. Trump on Thursday named David Friedman, a bankruptcy lawyer aligned with the Israeli far right, as his nominee for ambassador to Israel, elevating a campaign adviser who has questioned the need for a two-state solution and has likened left-leaning Jews in America to the Jews who aided the Nazis in the Holocaust.
Mr. Friedman, whose outspoken views stand in stark contrast to decades of American policy toward Israel, did not wait long on Thursday to signal his intention to upend the American approach. In a statement from the Trump transition team announcing his nomination, he said he looked forward to doing the job “from the U.S. embassy in Israel’s eternal capital, Jerusalem.”

more at link

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/15/us/politics/donald-trump-david-friedman-israel-ambassador.html?emc=edit_na_20161215&nlid=28208667&ref=headline&_r=0

Please don't Laugh! My guard dog is posing.

I'm walking Lola now, a little bit anyway. When we encounter pedestrians I usually say something like: "Don't worry! I've got this."

Putin Agrees to Receive Intelligence Briefings in Trumps Place - Borowitz tells it

NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—In what Donald Trump’s transition-team members are calling a further example of international coöperation, Russian President Vladimir Putin has agreed to receive daily U.S. intelligence briefings in the place of the President-elect.

Trump, who had earlier decided that he did not need the briefings and had assigned Vice-President-elect Mike Pence to receive them, said on Tuesday that Putin was a “much better choice.”

“No offense to Mike, but Vladimir Putin is just a terrific, terrific guy to do this,” he said. “He knows all the players.”

Trump said that, while he was “totally uninterested” in receiving the briefings, Putin appeared to be “extremely interested.”

“He’s just terrific,” he said.

Trump also touted his deal-making prowess in securing the Russian President’s services. “The American people are getting an amazing deal here,” he said. “Putin is doing this totally for free.”


Walked by my Christmas cactus while playing "Where's Lola"

Senator Mitch McConnell supports Inquiry of Russian Hacking During Election

Source: NY Times


Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, said on Monday that he supported congressional investigations of possible Russian cyberattacks to influence the American election.
But Mr. McConnell stopped short of saying whether he agreed that Russia interfered in the election in support of Donald J. Trump, and he repeatedly declined to address the president-elect’s attack on the Central Intelligence Agency.

more at link

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/12/us/politics/mcconnell-supports-inquiry-of-russian-hacking-during-election.html?emc=edit_na_20161212&nlid=28208667&ref=cta

I planned to take a break from Lola posts. Then this happened.

I was putting on dinner for a few friends and Lola was getting socialized, as I'm told it's called. Could not find her at one point.
Then I did.

I beware of my lawnmower. Those things should be banned.

I also try to not fall out of bed.

Saturday: time for a bath :) - yes - it's still about Lola

There were still a few fleas around. After all, Lola came from a horse farm.
So it took two of us to make sure she did not drink the bath water, or jump out. She was very good. I'm grateful because she gets more puppy wild by the day.

An open apology to Dolly Parton -- a heartfelt note to her I found on facebook

Dear Dolly,

I’ll be honest. I used to think you were a bimbo. I used to think you flaunted your big boobs, teased hair, tiny waist, and your syrupy-sweet southern accent just to sell yourself and your brand as a country singer. Granted, I was raised in the Midwest and lived as an adult for many years in the Northeast. I didn’t get you, much less the South.

For example, I’d heard about your origins as a poor girl from the hills of East Tennessee, and when I learned you’d created a theme park in your native Sevier County I rolled my eyes. “Really, a theme park?” I thought. “As if rollercoasters will really help the people of rural Appalachia. Why not create something truly useful to give back to your community, like a library.”


You have created a library, actually, and possibly in a bigger and more magical way than any brick structure filled with books could. And this is where my understanding of who you are really began to shift.

When I moved to Knoxville eight years ago I received a welcome letter from “Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.” It informed me that Dolly’s vision was to foster a love of reading among preschool children by mailing a specially selected book each month directly to any child under the age of 5. You had expanded it from Sevier County to my county, and if I had a preschool age child, it said, all I needed to do was sign her up and she would begin receiving books each month.

My daughter was not quite 2 then, and I can still see how her face lit up each time we pulled a book addressed to her out the mailbox every month. Several of them became her early childhood favorites, and are stored away should she have children of her own some day.

As a writer and editor, I’m a book hound and made sure my daughter has been exposed to reading at every turn. But you know better than anyone that not all kids have that privilege. I can’t imagine what a magical gift receiving a book every month must be for kids whose parents can’t afford to buy them or who don’t have easy access to a library. I quickly came to see the genius of your Imagination Library literacy program, and how you were making a difference in so many ways I never realized.

Your father was illiterate, which fueled your literacy passion. Now the Dolly Parton Imagination Library just surpassed gifting one million books to participating children around the world each month. To celebrate, your Dollywood Foundation randomly selected one of those children to receive a $30,000 college scholarship. Two-year-old Evey, from Conway, Arkansas, has no idea yet how fortunate she is, but her parents surely do.

But what finally brings me to this apology is how I’ve seen you respond to the devastating wildfires that swept through your hometown communities of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. At least 14 vibrant lives were taken tragically too soon, and thousands of buildings and homes were damaged or destroyed.

You made a public statement saying that you were heartbroken, while also expressing deep gratitude to the firefighters who protected Dollywood and evacuated everyone staying there to safety. This is the place I dismissed, but now know is the largest employer in Sevier County and is the largest ticketed tourist attraction in Tennessee, hosting over 3 million guests a season. East Tennessee will count on that tourism to rebuild.

With the humble generosity and graciousness I’m learning is signature Dolly Parton, you’re not only planning a telethon to raise funds for the fire victims, but you’ve also created the My People Fund to provide, as you say, a “hand up to all those families who have lost everything in the fires.”

Those struggling families will receive, thanks to you, $1,000 a month for 6 months. Countless stories detail how these families escaped with literally minutes to spare, and with nothing but the clothes they were wearing. And with each story, there’s a strong undercurrent of hope about how strangers helped one another and how this region is “mountain strong.” Your generosity both reflects and inspires this region’s spirit and resiliency.

Tonight, my daughter, who is now 9 and also loves to sing and act, has been using face paint to dress up as one of the DC comic heroines her friends admire. When she finished, she asked, “Hmmm, what other Superhero girl do I admire?”

I sat down next to her and said, “Let me tell you about Dolly.” In fact, I hope to take her to a Christmas show at Dollywood during this season of gratitude, and I’ll be making a donation to your My People Fund. I can’t imagine a better place to be, or a better way to support an amazing example of what it looks like to make the world a better place, starting with your own sweet community.

Dolly, I’m sorry I didn’t get you sooner—and I thank you for all you are, and all that you do.

Your biggest fan,

Amy Rawe

I, Mira, took this photograph of Pilot Mountain NC 10 days ago, it’s pretty far away from the fires in the NC and Tennessee mountains, which now have been subdued by rain. It was smoke drifting over the knob of Mount Pilot, I smelled it, and it was quite a sight.

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