"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Sunday Salon. Voting edition.

How about our darling grandsons in their Halloween costumes?

Weather:
An atmospheric river from Hawaii was supposed to move through on Friday bringing lots of rain but it really just brought a lot of wind. One of the street trees in our neighborhood blew over. Will it be nice on Halloween for trick-or-treating?

Family news: Usual pandemic stuff...hanging out in the house a lot with short forays out to shop for food and to walk the dog. Lots of time doing puzzles, playing cards, Zoom Bible Study, Zoom church, and watching politics on TV.  Comfort food has been on the menu. This week I made apple cake, a favorite food from my childhood and a boiled dinner we usually only have on St. Patrick's Day: Corned beef, potatoes, cabbage, and beets. I know. Sounds ghastly but we like it.

Halloween: How's this for our Halloween decorations? These are our pumpkins this year. Recognize the sunglasses?


Books:

  • Completed
    •  Almost Everything: Notes on Hope by Anne Lamott. A favorite author, not a favorite book. (Print)
    • Writers and Lovers by Lily King. It is tough work to make dreams come true and to be honest with yourself and others. (Audiobook)
  • Currently reading
    •  A Velocity of Being: Letters to a Young Reader, edited by Maria Popova. Still enjoying these letters written by people to future readers. (Print, 70%)
    • Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo. A new book club selection. Love and polygamy. (Print, 1%)
  • Book club--The RHS book club met in a socially distanced, outside setting (with heaters) to discuss Born a Crime by Trevor Noah. We were all starved for human contact and enjoyed discussing the book and being together.
Vote November 3rd. Participate. Your Vote Counts.

COVID: Sad/Mad/Bad: Our only option now to save our lives is to VOTE!


Good news and information about voting:

1. VOTE. VOTE. VOTE. Don't get worried if the results on Election Night are skewed toward Trump. Mail-in ballots, which more Democrats filled out this year, are counted last and it may take a few days for them to be reflected in the counts. Stay positive!

2. The only polls that really tell us anything are the State polls. One chap, see chart below, has looked at all the polls and has done a little math. Remember the Electoral College target number to win is 270. First he plugged in the "for sure" state numbers red and blue (baseline: Biden 232, Trump 125.) Then he plugged in electoral counts based on polls. Let's hope he's right. (DKos) For wonks, read The Economist and the 538 forecast.

3. And here's a fun activity. Open up another page on your browser to an Electoral College Calculator Map like 270toWin. Start adding and subtracting using the NYT chart below to see the likelihood of a Biden or Trump win.


4. How to vote in your state (WaPo) or visit the county auditor's (election clerk) or the Secretary of State's website in your state.

Or consult this website if you have any questions about voting in your area

 5. Absentee Ballot Deadlines in all States. (Vote.org) DO NOT MAIL YOUR BALLOT NOW OR IT MAY NOT BE COUNTED. Turn it into a voting dropbox in your area or take it to your polling station on election day, November 3rd. MAKE SURE YOUR VOTE IS COUNTED.

6. "R.I. P., G.O.P.--The Party of Lincoln had a good run. Then came Mr. Trump." NYT Editorial, Oct. 24, 2020

Of all the things President Trump has destroyed, the Republican Party is among the most dismaying.

“Destroyed” is perhaps too simplistic, though. It would be more precise to say that Mr. Trump accelerated his party’s demise, exposing the rot that has been eating at its core for decades and leaving it a hollowed-out shell devoid of ideas, values or integrity, committed solely to preserving its own power even at the expense of democratic norms, institutions and ideals.

7. "If Trump wins, athletes might just stop playing." (Intelligencer) No! No professional or college sports? Another big reason to elect Biden!

“If Trump wins, or if he refuses to concede, I’m telling you right now: There won’t be any sports for a month,” he said. “Maybe more. These kids just won’t stand for it...Settling for less in the near term is a reasonable strategy — as long as Joe Biden wins. But what happens if Trump overcomes his long odds and does somehow prevail? I think you will see the largest and most expensive athlete protest in the history of sports. I agree with my executive friend: I think they will simply refuse to play.

8.  20 US Attorneys--all Republican--endorse Biden. (WaPo)

Twenty former U.S. attorneys — all of them Republicans — on Tuesday publicly called President Trump “a threat to the rule of law in our country,” and urged that he be replaced in November with his Democratic opponent, former vice president Joe Biden.

“The President has clearly conveyed that he expects his Justice Department appointees and prosecutors to serve his personal and political interests,” said the former prosecutors in an open letter. They accused Trump of taking “action against those who have stood up for the interests of justice.”

The letter, signed by prosecutors appointed by every GOP president from Eisenhower to Trump, is the latest instance of Republicans backing Biden.

9. Nickelodeon kids pick Biden 53% to Trump 47%. Yay! (Republicans even tried to cheat on this vote, but Nickelodeon figured it out and backed out the illegal votes made by bots. Ha!)

10. Well, this is interesting...

Musical Interlude: This is from 2018 but it is so appropriate for today. WE SHALL OVERCOME. "We shall overcome this day and pray for love to lead the way."  


On the lighter side

1. This has nothing to do with politics, pandemics, or racism. This week my daughter showed me this weather report and I laughed every single time I looked at it. (It is from 2015) Enjoy. We all deserve a little levity to break up the tension right now. (Weather map goes crazy.)


2.


3. Trump knows nothing about climate change. Want to make him shut up? Here's how...

4.Don't let the worst restaurant man win because you didn't vote.

 

5. I don't even live in Texas so I can't vote for this guy, but I think this political ad is so funny. Hope you enjoy it, too. (TX-01)


6. 


7.


Lastly: In the event that things go sideways after the election, here are some resources to help you act to defend democracy. Let's hope that this is unnecessary.

On a national level there are two organizations asking for people to sign up and be ready to act: 

 

So folks, this is the last post before the Nov. 3rd election. I have found some comfort each week pulling out tidbits of information to share with you. It was my hope that this information helped you make a decision to vote for Biden or the courage to share with your friends/family what you have learned. I have tried to deal in facts not conspiracy theories or "fake news." I wanted to bring you a bit of humor to help lighten up the mood we are are all feeling right now...tense and worried. I hope the "funnies" I found did that. Now we wait and pray for positive results.

A moment of Zen:

Click on this link to listen to Raul Malo play a cover of 'A CHANGE IS GONNA TO COME.' It is a perfect way to usher out this Sunday Salon post. (Thanks Kathy for sharing this with me.)  While you are listening you can meditate on the beauty of trees.

A view of our backyard from the upstairs window. I wish you could experience the beauty of the light as it is filtered through the leaves. It sparkles in golden tones. The photo doesn't do it justice.

BREATHE. BREATHE. BREATHE.

-Anne

Friday, October 30, 2020

Review and quotes: BORN A CRIME

Sadie enjoying a snooze while we discussed Born a Crime. Photo used with permission.

Title
: Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah

Book Beginnings quote:

Friday56 quote:

Summary: Trevor Noah, the comedian who is the host of The Daily Show on the Comedy Central channel, grew up in South Africa during the time that apartheid was becoming dismantled, though racism was alive and well. Apartheid attempted to categorize people according to their race and ethnicity to keep them separate. Noah, a mixed race child born to a black South African woman and a white Swiss man, did not fit into a category so was often on the outside in social/school settings. His birth was evidence of a crime, since it was illegal for whites and blacks to have sex and/or create children together. For this reasons his mother went to extreme measures to hide him until the tyrannical apartheid "whites rule" ended. From that point Noah and his mother, though very poor, spent a lot of time on low-cost adventures.

Born a Crime is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. It is also the story of that young man’s relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and fervently religious mother—his teammate, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would ultimately threaten her own life.--The Publisher

Review: I am a big fan of Trevor Noah and the Daily Show. When everything in life seems ultra serious these days it is good to turn on Comedy Central just before bed and watch Noah talk about politics and the news of the day from a decidedly funny point of view. I've long wanted to read this memoir so I was glad when it was chosen as our book club's October reading selection. I assumed, others in my club did too, that the book would walk the readers through Noah's march from poverty in South Africa to his rise to fame as a comedian and his stint on The Daily Show. Well, we were all wrong. The book was only about his life in South Africa and only mentioned once, as an aside, that he was starting to work the clubs as a comedian. If someone wants to know how Trevor Noah got from there to here, this is not the book to read. But if someone wants to learn more about life in South Africa at the end of apartheid and about what a remarkable child Noah was and what a phenomenal mother he had, this is your book. 

I listened to the audiobook read by Trevor Noah himself. One of the things I loved most oabout this experience of listening to it was the way Noah used language. He learned from his mother the value of speaking to people in their own language and he knows many South African languages at least well enough to converse in them. The Friday56 quote is an example where Noah perfectly recites the Africaans quotes so the listeners could here the language. My book club is made up of current and retired high school teachers. Three of the gals are retired world language teachers. They all spoke very passionately about how much they appreciated Noah's comments about the importance of language in building bridges with people.

The photo at the top of this page is our hostesses dog, Sadie, who joined us as we sat outside near propane heaters to discuss Born a Crime. I highly recommend this book for book clubs and for anyone who enjoys reading about other cultures or just likes Trevor Noah.

Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Rose City ReaderShare the opening quote from current book.
Th
e Friday56 is hosted at Freda's VoiceFind a quote from page 56 to share. 

Visit these two websites to participate. Click on links to read quotes from books other people are reading. It is a great way to make blog friends and to get suggestions for new reading material.   
 

-Anne

RHS Book Club, October 2020

 


Monday, October 26, 2020

TTT: Best horror fiction I've read

Top Ten Tuesday: The best horror books I've read from the Shortlist of 35 best horror novels ever written. (See list here). Admittedly I don't read many books in the horror genre, so I haven't read many of the books on this list, but I have read a few. I actually would debate with the creator of the original list that many of the novels aren't actually horror titles. See what you think.


1. Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier---I just watched the updated movie of this atmospheric novel. It definitely has a spooky vibe and is considered a classic gothic novel. (1938)

2. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut---not sure why this book is on the list. It is a war story and the events are horrifying but not scary-frightening. (1969)

3. Lord of the Flies by William Golding---once again a book that has a horrifying theme but it isn't frightening. Nonetheless it is on the list. (1954)

4. Coraline by Neil Gaiman---everyone's nightmare that somehow we will get lost from our family and can't find them. This one is truly frightening. (2002)

5. Beloved by Toni Morrison---indeed it is a ghost story but the haunting is unusual. (1987)

6. The Stranger by Albert Camus---I read this book in French so I'm not sure I understood it very well, but I just remember it being strange not frightening. (1942)

7. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson---A definite thriller with very dark themes. (2005)

8. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood---definitely bleak and dystopian but horror. I think not. What do you think? (1995)

9. The Testaments by Margaret Atwood---sequel to Handmaid's Tale. Thrilling, not frightening. Your thoughts? (2019)

I've only read nine of the 35 books on the Shortlist. Take a look at it. How many have you read?What books are you shocked aren't on the list?

Here are some titles I expected but weren't on the list: Collected Stories of Edgar Allan Poe; Wuthering Heights; The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; The Picture of Dorian Gray; more titles by Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and Shirley Jackson.

-Anne

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Sunday Salon. On the Count Down.


Weather: The night's are turning cold and threats of frost are in the air. Right now (Saturday afternoon) it is lovely and cool with blue skies.


Family news:  We visited a local pumpkin patch with our daughter and her family. Ian had fun running around, going on a ride pulled by a tractor, attempting to hit a box with a pumpkin in a sling shot, and jumping off a hay bale when grandma said "Jump". I love this photo so much. You can even see our other grandson's head peeking out from the cool mommy-n-baby coat.

Books: Amazingly I actually did a little reading this week.

  • Completed:
    •  The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert. This was a book club selection for the club meeting this past Tuesday. Last week I mentioned that I had abandoned this book because of its serious and depressing message, but I picked it back up and nearly completed it in time for the meeting. I highly recommend it. It contains such a vital and timely message we all need to hear. (Print)
    • Born a Crime by Trevor Noah. No wonder everyone who has read this told me to read it, too. I expected "how I became famous" but got "growing up in South Africa is hard work." There was not a hint of feeling sorry for himself, either. Wow. Now it's your turn. Read it! Better yet, listen to the audiobook. Noah reads it himself. (Audiobook)
    • Hello, Neighbor! The Kind and Caring World of Mr. Rogers by Matthew Cordell. An authorized picture children's biography of Mr Rogers. Love it. (Print)
  • Currently reading
    •  A Velocity of Being: Letters to Young Readers by Maria Popova. A collection of over 100 letters written to young readers of the future from authors and other well-known people. I am so grateful that this book fell into my hands at this time. It is like a salve to a wound. (30%, print)
    • Writers and Lovers by Lily King. I started this audiobook ages ago and didn't finish it before it was due back at the library. I just got it back and am trying to pick up where I left off last time. (Audiobook, 50%) 
    • Almost Everything: Notes on Hope by Anne Lamott. I picked this one up from my church library a few weeks ago, wanting something, anything to give me hope. At least I can read it even though there is so much chatter going on in my head. (50%, print)

Good News:

1. Endorsements for Biden. In the event you still need a little persuasion before you vote, read/view these:

  • Rolling Stone Magazine 
    • "We’ve lived for the past four years under a man categorically unfit to be president. Fortunately for America, Joe Biden is Donald Trump’s opposite in nearly every category: The Democratic presidential nominee evinces competence, compassion, steadiness, integrity, and restraint. Perhaps most important in this moment, Biden holds a profound respect for the institutions of American democracy, as well as a deep knowledge about how our government — and our system of checks and balances — is meant to work; he aspires to lead the nation as its president, not its dictator. The 2020 election, then, offers the nation a chance to reboot and rebuild from the racist, authoritarian, know-nothing wreckage wrought by the 45th president. And there are few Americans better suited to the challenge than Joe Biden."
  • USA Today
    • "Elect Joe Biden. Reject Donald Trump.  In 2016, we broke tradition in urging you not to vote for Trump. Now we're making our first presidential endorsement. We hope it's our last... Now, two weeks until Election Day, we suggest you consider a variation of the question Republican Ronald Reagan asked voters when he ran for president in 1980: Is America better off now than it was four years ago?"
  • Ret. Admiral William McRaven (who oversaw the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden) wrote an  op-ed in the Wall Street Journal endorsing Biden.
    • "This week I went to the polls in Texas. Truth be told, I am a pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, small-government, strong-defense and a national-anthem-standing conservative. But, I also believe that black lives matter, that the Dreamers deserve a path to citizenship, that diversity and inclusion are essential to our national success, that education is the great equalizer, that climate change is real and that the First Amendment is the cornerstone of our democracy. Today I voted for Joe Biden."
  •  The Des Moines Register endorsed Biden several weeks ago. Now they are endorsing a slate of Democrats. Wow, just wow. If only people read newspapers still.
    • [Putting party above country] has led Republicans down a treacherous path of steadfast loyalty to a president who has coddled dictators, demonized immigrants, wavered on denouncing white supremacists, run the White House like a family business, routinely ignored science and witnessed over 215,000 Americans die in a pandemic on his watch. And the worst may be yet to come, since he has not committed to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election.

      That's why in this particular election every Republican incumbent should be voted out of office and every open seat should be awarded to the Democratic candidate.

      The Democratic candidates for Congress in Iowa have much to offer. But make no mistake: Elected Republicans' actions have been so poisonous that removing them from power is as important a goal as sending thoughtful public servants to Washington.  
  • Mel Brooks, first Presidential endorsement ever. (You never know what kind of weird news items I will find each week! Ha!)

2.This Joe Biden ad played during the first game of the World series, narrated by Sam Elliot. It is super patriotic. (Link)


3. Pope Francis calls for civil union law for same sex marriages. (Catholic News Agency)

  • “Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family. They’re children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out, or be made miserable because of it,” Pope Francis said in the film, of his approach to pastoral care.

4. This poem is by author Octavia Butler from the Parable of the Talents. It is very appropriate for us today.


5. A Texas teenager may have found a COVID-19 cure breakthrough. Really. Read about this astonishing story here. (DKos)

6. The polling still looks very good for Biden. Even on issues that the President thinks he has sown up, he is behind on most of them.


7.  Obama is back! Here he speaks at a Biden campaign rally in Philadelphia. It is 36 minutes long but I loved listening to him again! (Obama at Biden rally)


I'm not the only one who felt this way. Check out this meme that showed up the day after his speech.



Musical Interlude from Dave Mason and the Quarantines, playing "Feelin' Alright." Haven't heard of them? If you are an old rocker you'll recognize the musicians. Enjoy. (Listen here.)


On the Lighter Side:

1.Trump knows the only way he will win is if he cheats. And he is so crooked he thinks cheating is fine.


2. Doesn't it seem like Trump only does things for himself, not the country?


3. Trump lies so often some people don't even recognize them as lies. But others see the truth, like Tom Hanks!


4. Borat's new movie apparently caught Trump's attorney, Rudolph Giuliani, with his pants almost off. This is Borat defending him. (Snark)

5. Most laughs of the day, compliments of my sister Grace.


6. Unless you consider the kind of "treats" we've been eating in 2020. Yuck.


7.  Every week I think I won't find enough funny memes to fill my blog. Every week I am delighted by what I actually find. Musically speaking, this one seems to wrap up the year perfectly.

8. And the last word of the week goes to Gilligan's Island.

Another musical Interlude. This is not-to-be-missed. (Black Eyed Peas)


10 more days until election day. Breathing deep.

I love your comments. It lets me know you have visited and read my blog. But it also allows for polite discourse. Please leave a comment below or on the link at Facebook. Thank you.

-Anne

Friday, October 23, 2020

Review and quotes: THE SIXTH EXTINCTION


Title
: The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

Book Beginnings quote: Prologue:

Beginnings, it's said, are apt to be shadowy. So it is with this story, which starts with the emergence of a new species maybe two hundred thousand years ago. The species does not have a name--nothing does--but it has the capacity to name things.

Friday56 quote:

Darwin's familiarity with human-caused extinction is clear from On the Origin of a Species. In one of the many passages where he heaped scorn on the catastrophists, he observed that animals become rare before they become extinct. 

Summary: Scientists believe there has been five mass extinctions during the history of the planet Earth. Currently the sixth extinction is under way and it will be as catastrophic the one caused by an asteroid that slammed into the planet causing the extinction of all the dinosaurs. The sixth extinction is happening faster than one can imagine and will likely be the most lasting legacy of the humans who have caused it.

Review: I've wanted to read this book since it won the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction in 2015. When it showed up as a book club library kit for check out, I selected it for my club over a year ago. Little did I know at the time that we would be embroiled in a catastrophic pandemic when it finally came our way. Club members discussed whether or not we should read it now. Would it be too deep and depressing for us to tackle? We decided to give it a try and I think everyone was glad that we did, though only three of the nine gals actually read the whole book.

     The first five chapters or so are pretty dense, looking at evidence of extinctions going back millions of years and talking about creatures that we've never even heard of before. But as the author started talking about the evidence of this, the sixth extinction, the book became easier to read and almost un-put-downable. What is happening to amphibians, bats, rhinos, and to coral reefs is so frightening. If we don't get a handle on climate change, and fast, our ocean will become unlivable due to the acidification of it. It was a real call to action. Though very depressing at the core, it also has some points of hope, showing how many people are working on solutions to reverse the course we are on and how we can help.

     It is maybe not the book one should recommend for people to read right now in the midst of our pandemic lock-downs. Or maybe, and this is what I think, it is the perfect book to read when one has time to ponder ways they can change their own lives for the better, to help reduce their own carbon footprint. Either way, add it to your reading list. It is a must read for sometime in your life, the sooner, the better. After you read it,  watch the David Attenborough's 2020 documentary called "Life on this Planet" available right now on Netflix. It is a powerful video on the same topic by the famed naturalist who says the film is his witness statement and hope for the future.

Book Club discussion questions: (I didn't find any questions from the publisher. So I grabbed a copy of the questions assigned to tenth grade readers by their Biology teacher in some school. We all decided that questions directed at 10th graders was about the right level for us.)

The Sixth Extinction Discussion Questions 

  1. The hallmark of evolutionary biology is adaptability. Is the main challenge facing our era the speed with which we are forcing things to adapt? Explain. 
  2. Describe the causes and effects of ocean acidification. 
  3.  Which of Kolbert's examples seems most compelling/troubling to you, and why?  
  4. If humans have a place in the natural balance, should we expect the planet itself and other organisms to adapt and evolve in response to our impact? 
  5. How has "the new Pangea," as Kolbert calls it, accelerated certain threats to various species' future around the globe? 
  6.  "The Thing with Feathers" (chapter XIII) alludes to Emily Dickinson's poem "Hope is the thing with feathers" (Poem 314). After reading Kolbert's book, where do you see some hopeful possibilities? 
  7. Has reading this book changed your views about climate change in any way? How so? 
  8.  What specific steps might you take to counteract the trends that Kolbert describes in her book?

Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Rose City ReaderShare the opening quote from current book.
Th
e Friday56 is hosted at Freda's VoiceFind a quote from page 56 to share. 

Visit these two websites to participate. Click on links to read quotes from books other people are reading. It is a great way to make blog friends and to get suggestions for new reading material.   
 

-Anne

SOTH Book Club, October 2020

Monday, October 19, 2020

TTT: Books I read in 2020 because someone recommended them to me

 Top Ten Tuesday: Books I have read in 2020 based on a recommendation

 

1. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtrey
Recommended by: Deb Nance at Readerbuzz; read in April.

2. Hatchet by Gary Paulsen 
Recommended by Rita and Carly, my daughters; read in May.

3. Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult
Recommended by my sister, Kathy; read in June.

4. Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad
Recommended by a public librarian; read in July.

5. Valentine by Elizabeth Wetmore
Recommended by Yvonne, a member of my book club; read in July.

6. Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
Recommended by Sue at Book by Book; read in August.

7. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
Recommended by Kathy, a friend and sorority sister; read in September

8. Redhead by the Side of the Road by Anne Tyler
Recommended by Debbie, another book club member; read in September.

9. A Very Stable Genius by Rucker and Leonnig
Recommended by Rachel Maddow on her show in MSNBC; read in October.

-Anne

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Sunday Salon. Faith edition.


Weather: Overcast and dreary. We are definitely turning the corner into Fall weather patterns. It was rainy and windy several days during the past week, followed by sunny and warm temperatures other days.

Family news and musings on faith:

  • Books. To be honest I have thrown in the towel on several books and practically on reading in general. Reading is difficult for me right now, I am so distressed about national politics I can't seem to settle in to read more than a few pages here or there, making poetry or essay books my go-to choices. I did finish a poetry book by Barbara Kingsolver and am finding solace in essays by Anne Lamott. I'm even having trouble making myself listen to the Trevor Noah audiobook.  I decided to NOT even attempt a finish one or two other books, one novel dealing with the topic of child sexual abuse and the other a nonfiction title about extinction. Both of those topics were way too serious for me and my moods right now.
  • Issues of faith. As most of you know, I am a devote Christian AND a Democrat. If you pay attention to the news you would think that those two conditions are impossibly opposed to each other. I am confident I am not alone. Many of my friends are in the same boat. When we hear about evangelicals voting for Trump, the most profane, self-centered man to ever hold the office of President, it sets our teeth on edge. In fact one of the things that irritates me above all else is when I either lumped together with those evangelical voters or treated like I am not a Christian because I won't follow their lead. This week I found several organizations who are appealing to people like me, calling people of faith to vote their conscience, not the party. Exploring these sites was soothing to my soul.
    • Vote for Common Good. Vote Common Good is inspiring, energizing, and mobilizing people of faith to make the common good their voting criteria and to pursue faith, hope, & love for a change on election day 2020 and prevent the re-election of Donald Trump.
    • The billboards (three samples on this blog post) contrast the words of Jesus with the words of Trump, encouraging people to vote their conscience, not the party this election cycle. (Fox17 for a three minute video about the project)
    • An evangelical pastor encourages voters to vote for Biden NOT Trump. (Time)
    • Jackie, a right-to-life supporter is now supporting Biden. She says, "I will not be bullied." (Stand Up Republic on YouTube)
    • Not Our Faith PAC. (YouTube) The ad, Associated Press reports, says Trump “has used Christianity for his own purposes… [Christians] don’t need Trump to save them.” it says. “The truth is that Trump needs Christians to save his flailing campaign.”
    • A record-breaking number of faith leaders support Biden: over 1600 of them. (The Hill)
    • A message to us all from Pope Francis:

    • Biden is a man of faith. (NPR)

      "All of you remind me of how Scripture describes a calling born out of the wilderness," Biden told the virtual audience. "A calling to serve, not to be served. A calling toward justice, healing, hope — not hate. To speak the good news, and followed by some good deeds. It's not just enough to speak the good news, but good deeds."

      This wasn't a one-off religious reference; this is how Biden routinely speaks.


  • Halloween is around the corner. That means a three-year-old I know and love is half-crazed with excitement. // We got flu shots this week. That is taken care of now! Whew! // Seahawks football is up and running and the season is going well. Happiness and harmony reign in our home when football is going well.


Good News:

1. On your mark, get set, VOTE!

2. Link to all pro-Biden, anti-Trump videos. Have fun! (Save America 2020)

3. Competing town halls. 15.1 Million viewers watched Biden on ABC and only 13.5 million people watched Trump on NBC, MSNBC, and CNBC. My theory is that Biden supporters watched him and Trump supporters watched the President. If I am right, that is another good sign that Biden will win.

4. Rudy Giuliani's daughter encourages everyone to vote for Biden, obviously splitting from her famous father. (Vanity Fair)

"We are hanging by a single, slipping finger on a cliff’s edge, and the fall will be fatal. If we remove ourselves from the fight, our country will be in freefall. Alternatively, we can hang on, elect a compassionate and decent president, and claw our way back onto the ledge. If I, after decades of despair over politics, can engage in our democracy to meet this critical moment, I know you can too."

5. I just love this list. Everything on it matters to me. What matters to you?

6. "43 Alumni for Biden. Team 46" (YouTube) Alumni working with George W. Bush's administration backing Biden. A lot of them!

7. Must watch! Peter Souza'a "The Way I See It." Souza was the White House photographer under the Reagan and Obama administrations. He is speaking out with his art about how Trump is not the right man for the job, by comparison to the other two men. Find it. Watch it. Tell others to watch. Wow. (King5 News Promo)

8.  Must read "End Our National Crisis (New York Times) Read the whole thing and all the links. (Figure out how to get past the paywall!) "Donald Trump’s re-election campaign poses the greatest threat to American democracy since World War II."


On the Lighter Side:

1. I guess Trump IS someone's crazy uncle. Ha!



2. Referring back to last week and all the fly jokes after the Vice-Presidential debate..


3. At a Trump rally on Friday the President threatened if he doesn't win, he'll leave the country. Talk about a bad loser. Speaking of losing...

Trailing in the polls and at a significant cash deficit compared to Mr. Biden, Mr. Trump attempted to argue that he was opting against raising more money as he enters the final stretch of the election.

“I could raise more money,” he said. “I would be the world’s greatest fund-raiser, but I just don’t want to do it.”  What Trump is saying is the classic thing every bully says when he knows he’s beaten and but doesn’t want to admit it.

4. Maybe this is why he wants to leave...


5. I love this part in Willie Wonka... (snark)


6. I just talked to a friend on the phone. She had to stop cleaning out a closet to talk to me. Me? My house is getting junkier by the day.


7. Do you think this is supposed to be the child (wild, unkempt) or the parent (wild, frantic, unkempt)?


8.Sadly, this is probably true...


9. The Biden campaign sure seems to have a sense of humor. Got to love cat videos...

10. And be sure to choose your humans wisely... White House Dogs.



Please join in the discussion below in the comments section or on Facebook. I'd especially love to hear from you concerning your thoughts on faith related to this election. Thanks for reading my blog. Two more weeks and two days to go.  VOTE EARLY! 


-Anne