~Living a life of sophisticated domestication deep in the heart of Texas~

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Happy New Year....

I've been wanting to use this picture of a Texas dandelion for some time, and it looks like fireworks to me, so here it is! Beautiful! I hope you like it.
Did everybody have a nice Xmas? We have, and will enjoy the holiday spirit well into 2009. We're looking forward to going to the King Tut exhibit in Dallas and will stay in a posh B&B. There will be New Year's gongyo and possibly another museum visit, too. Then on the way back home we'll pick up Sebastian.

I'm going to be starting out on a new account in January, too. New puppy and new job, all at the same time? What was I thinking?? LOL!! Life around here is about to change....

I've been thinking a lot about friends and family up in Washington, where it's been more like Alaska than the normally mild climate of Puget Sound. I'm sure it's pretty, but a little of that goes a long way, and I'm sure everyone would like the weather to simmer down. We were so blessed to be able to run around barefoot with windows and patio doors open on Christmas here, although I am looking forward to seeing a little bit of that Texas snow...(I said a *little* bit, mindya!!)

Well, SGTex has the bacon and pancakes going, so it's time to sign off and check on the coffee.

We'll be back soon with a puppy update and our upcoming trip news, but meanwhile, we're sincerely wishing you all a most blessed 2009!


Shawn & SGTex

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Cookie Rules....

1. If you eat a Christmas cookie fresh out of the oven, it has no calories because everyone knows that the first cookie is the test and thus calorie free.

2. If you drink a diet soda after eating your second cookie, it also has no calories because the diet soda cancels out the cookie calories.

3. If a friend comes over while you're making your Christmas cookies and needs to sample, you must sample with your friend. Because your friend's first cookie is calorie free (see rule #1), yours is also. It would be rude to let your friend sample alone.

4. Any cookie calories consumed while walking around will fall to your feet and eventually fall off as you move. This is due to gravity and the density of the caloric mass.

5. Any calories consumed during the frosting of the Christmas cookies will be used up because it takes many calories to lick excess frosting from a knife without cutting your tongue.

6. Cookies colored red or green have very few calories. Red ones have three and green ones have five - one calorie four each letter. Make more red ones!

7. Cookies eaten while watching any classic Christmas shows on TV have no calories because they are part of the traditional entertainment package and not part of one's personal fuel.

8. As always, cookie pieces contain no calories because the process of breaking causes calorie leakage.

9. Any cookies consumed from someone else's plate have no calories since the calories rightfully belong to the other person and will cling to their plate. We all know how calories like to cling!

10. Any cookies consumed while feeling stressed have no calories because cookies used for medicinal purposes NEVER have calories. It's a rule!

Merry Christmas! Enjoy your cookies!

photo courtesy of www.karenschronicle.com (Betty Crocker is a slacker)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

"There is an awesome truth..."

I can’t let on to be very well-read, but one time during a period of underemployment I was at the public library and got hold of Paul Davies’ *The 5th Miracle* and something or other by Stuart Kauffman, and I would cite these 2 fellows and urge those concerned about the true story of the origin of life to join me in checking out the ol’ Wikipedia on the very very valid things these men of science hold up to the light. If they must, creationists can find M. Behe’s review of the aforementioned Davies book.

Oh, and see *Black Holes and Baby Universes* or *A Brief History of Time* by Stephen Hawking, of course.

But anyway, greetings CARM evolutionists and creationists, old friends and new who think it matters a lot where we came from, and what really happened long ago to give rise to us.

I confess a zeal for this; why, since I was 9 years old and younger, I have been on the side of reason and reality. I have been a science believer all my life. Unashamed am I that this is a type of faith; hey, it’s robust faith indeed that bases on what *can* be known and is known, ‘stead of unseen and perhaps unlikely things we are expected to believe without a whiff of evidence.

An important thrust of religious evolutionism is that our physical existence is fabulously wondrous and meaningful, not *merely* a product of, but one with the sovereign absolute.

I don’t see why the word of science should be thought hostile to religious faith or even theism, but it is even more simpatico with Buddhism. I get all filled with the spirit and excited when I consider the corroboration and proof there is to be had between Buddhism and the honest philosophy of science.

One is changed, lifted up by the news: There is an awesome truth about the expansive beginning of all things, that so-called Big Bang, and there is the elegant, wondrous truth about the physics and chemistry of the emergence of life out of the properties and programming of the material universe.

It’s a strong humanistic message, and runs joyously contrary to the negatives of hard fundamentalist religion, you know, that we are worth nothing innately and can only go wrong on our own. Science, like the merciful Buddha, holds up hope and courage for us, and some wholesome confidence in ourselves. Like a parent who says “You can do it!”

Of all faith traditions, Buddhism invests least in the supernatural and evolved (if you will) a fastidious rationalism in the millennium through China toward Japan. My master, Nichiren, stood up and introduced the Mandala very much as theoretical physicists reveal equations on a chalkboard.

Now science such as the physics of Hawking and peers gestures to an ultimate profound primary principle, a formula for the universe. In the Buddhism of the Lotus Sutra, this is called Wonderful or Myoho.

Anyway, now I’ve rattled on. Creationists, do you reckon I have bought into old Satan's lie, and all that?


Sunday, December 7, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.....

It is starting to take on a look of good cheer and glad tidings around here. The other evening we were on our way somewhere and saw a big star-like ornament shining across the way, and it was so pretty. Now there are lights going up and lawn displays and everyone is starting to decorate. We did a wonderful display outside our front door, including the best wreath ever! The tree has gone up and the lights are so pretty. SGTex is going to add more colored lights, so I can't wait to see that. There's a pretty snowflake on top and the mantel is decorated with antique cherubs, cones and pine boughs. We had company over yesterday for a little party, which was a great way to start the season. We've added a wonderful Happy Holidays playlist on imeem, which is growing.
All in all, it's been a terrific December so far! There's more to come, and we'll try to get back and update during the holidays, but right now there's some cookie dough waiting, so...
Oh~ The best part was the warm eggnog laced with cinnamon, nutmeg and rum last night (in bed!!!)
Now I call that a fine way to celebrate...


Shawn & SGTex