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Someone I lost track of years ago reappeared -- and the oddest part is that I made another try at finding her last week with no luck.  She found me via a KaCSFFS site -- maybe LJ, maybe something else. 

Other than that it has been a hard week.  Maybe someday I'll manage to absorb it.  I decided there is no use trying to move right now.  Maybe next year.  Maybe.
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Some of you know there were some cooking classes recently where you really do not cook anything. It is all fresh fruit, veggies and nuts. Basically raw food.  Everyone really needs to get more fresh foods in their diet. These series of classes will teach you to make all sorts of things. It is especially helpful to those who have trouble with dairy.
Cream cheese, without cheese or tofu! Which leads to cheese balls, CHEESECAKE, Ranch dressing - no dairy! Make your own almond milk. Great marinades, pickling, make your own sauerkraut and kim chee. Great smoothies to sneek in veggies for the people/children who won't eat them.  Much more.
You get a booklet at each class of what is prepared, watch it being made and then eat it.
Jane, Loren and Jace conduct this class in a format like friends getting together. They also have a good number of resources on raw foods; healthy eating.
All classes in Lee's Summit - just off 50 hwy and 3rd St. The link to register, ask questions etc:
Please pass along to those you think would be interested. Yes, there is chocolate too.



Sep. 20th, 2009 10:40 pm
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I think there is a cricket living in my bathtub.  The noise it makes seems to come from there.  I can't find it, but it is chirping madly, so I know it's there.

I have been using the shower upstairs because stepping on a cricket is just not appealing
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I went to the grocery store by way of Westport Road -- which was closed just where I had to make my turnoff to Mill Street.  Art fair and music.  Then I took stuff over to John, and when I left I headed north on Broadway.  My left turn lane at 31st Street was <b>jammed</b>  with traffic.  It must have taken two lights until I was close enough to see that half of 31st street to the east and Broadway north were closed to traffic.  I don't know who was doing what there, but they made a mess for sure.

Ah, the dregs of summer weather.  People are out doing things, and there is sun.  Not too hot, not too wet.  It really has been nice out this year.  Our grass is still green and growing.  It did not burn to yellow hay in August.  Renaissance Festival is going, though I will not be there this year.  I just don't do crowds very well anymore.

Tomorrow I have to do post office, doctor and Costco,  That should be enough for one day.

Oh Funny

Sep. 12th, 2009 09:28 pm
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I opened my door this morning to a Far Side cartoon.

Across the top half of the door was a huge spider web, With Madame Spider sitting in the middle.

"If we pull this off, we'll eat like kings!"
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and I will crosspost it to Facebook.

Someone declared a loan I made to them in a bankruptcy, and inasmuch as it was "unsecured", I got nothing.  Today I got notice that her lawyers are filing a claim for their payment -- about the same amount she still owed me.  

Soooooo --

I plan to file a motion with the court to deny them payment except at the foot of the line of claimants.

Has anyone you know ever tried this??  They are going to pitch a fit, of course, but I think it will be worth a try.

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Here it is:

A proposal to fine people who do not have health insurance once a plan is in place?  What universe do you folks live in??

Unless there is a public option -- or one at no cost -- the very idea is obscene.  Health insurance companies want to make a profit.  Unless there is one company or option that is not-for-profit, there will not be an option that a person without insurance thru work will be able to afford.  

The unemployed can just barely afford COBRA if they live in a state with good unemployment insurance.  Missouri has such crappy insurance one can hardly afford rent -- do not even mention frills like insurance.

You folks need to get real, and go study France or something. 

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large can of Always Save Vegetable Juice
small red onion, chopped
several t chopped garlic
olive oil
yellow squash
Mrs Dash.
fresh spinach, chopped
can of navy beans
can of red beans
bag of white corn
5 small red potatoes cut up
container of dehydrated black bean soup

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil until onion is clear.  Toss in cut up squash and sprinkle on Mrs. Dash.  Add vegetable juice, spinach, beans, corn and potato.  Let simmer a couple of hours.    Salt to taste -- with potatoes that means quite a bit!  It was ok when done, but I wanted a bit of zing, so I added a container of dehydrated instant black bean soup.

I figure if I go back to eating lots of vegetable soup, it will maybe keep the weight down.  It is surely a better snack than cookies or all the other things I can think of!


Aug. 29th, 2009 01:08 pm
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The Chili's on Westport Rd is gone. 

Meanwhile, I got one of those Social security statements that arrive periodically and found that early retirement at 62 now gets you under 1 K a month.  Retirement at 66 1/2 is no longer full retirement.  It gets you about 1500 to 1600, which is just not enough to live on easily.  Full retirement is now at age 70.  And it's now under 2200.

This is especially bad news for all of you younger people.  I am almost at the leading edge of the Baby Boom, and this is new and unpublicized.  The terms for those presently in their early 50s have always been less favorable, so it would be wise to check on what they plan to not do for you now.

Next time you get a statement, read it.

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Which means it's Monday.  I love 3 day weekends.  Yesterday I crashed out at 3 PM, and basically I stayed asleep until 11 AM today.  I took a brief pause in writing this to go get a glue gun at Strasser.  I looked for Pati's earlier today, but the area where she kept her stuff is really a salvage operation.  Some days are better than others for hunting down stuff.

I spent quite awhile talking to John, and he seems to have decided that surviving awhile is the way to go.  That would be good. 

As for me, I'm both looking forward to being laid off this year, and not.  No one sent me mail today saying we had our layoff meeting, so I guess we'll be at work another few weeks.
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This morning, as I was about to go down a long flight of stairs carrying a large container of food for a work party, I looked down, and I saw my feet!  Yes -- it was quite a shock.  I don't think I've seen them that way for years.  I was surprised at how easy it was to go down stairs when I could actually see them.

OK.  That's enough news for one day.
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This morning, I kept getting homesick for the East Coast in flashes.  New York City.  New Jersey.  The ocean.  The difference in the feel of towns.  Seaside Heights.  The Pine Barrens.  Places I have not seen for 30 or more years.

I don't know what was going on.  I was at work, doing the usual overtime tasks, and I kept flashing on places that I'd like to see.

I also kept getting that turn-of-the-year feeling that comes with September on the East Coast.  Maybe all these cool mornings are making me restless. 

I suppose that when we are laid off this year, it will be cool enough that I can go in the garage and repack boxes.  Then I should get a storage unit and put them outside my house.  When the house is down to manageable, I should move to someplace that does not have steep stairs.  Maybe all will be done by next year, and I can load a car with stuff for my nieces and take it to Pennsylvania.  That would be good. 
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Since most of the folks I would sent this to read LJ, I thought I'd post it.  This is about classes using raw foods -- recipes for raw foods!

Loran and Jane Van Benthusen

gratefully presents

a Raw Vegan Uncooking Class Series

at the Duncan Estates Community Center

633 SW Burry St. Lees Summit, MO 64081-2667


August 11th and 25th, September 8th and 22nd, October 6th and 27th



All classes are 3 hours long and cost $40 per person

your partner (or teen) can attend for free!


We will walk you through numerous recipes and send you home with a full belly and the skills and knowledge of how and why to add more raw foods to your diet. We want to help people take charge of their own health and improve their lives through adding more raw foods.


August 11th Basic raw skills: In this class you will learn how to make almond (or other) nut milks, a fruit smoothie, a creamy dip, zucchini pasta with a red sauce and an alfredo sauce and a yummy chocolate pudding. This class will help with ideas for every meal and your snacks. You will get a copy of all of the recipes.


August 25th Smoothies, Dressings and Marinades: You will learn why smoothies are so important and how to make make several different kinds. You will learn how to hide veggies in your smoothies so you can get more greens into your families diet. You will also learn a few salad dressings (even a creamy one) and a few marinades. You will get a copy of all of the recipes.


September 8th Fermentation 1: You will learn about why fermented foods are so important in your diet and learn how to make rejuvelac, kim chee, fermented salsa and sauerkraut. You will also learn how to use these ingredients in other recipes. You will get a copy of all the recipes.


September 22nd Fermentation 2: You must have taken the first class to take this one or have a firm grasp on the fermentation process. In this class you will learn how to make a fermented cashew cheeze, how to make that into dips and dressings and how to make a raw vegan cheezecake. (no dairy). You will get a copy of all of the recipes.


More classes to come. We are hoping to teach two classes a month............

If you are interested please sign up right away before these classes fill up by emailing jane@kc.rr.com or calling (816)668-3612 and either mailing a check to Jane Van Benthusen 602 SE Green St. Lee's Summit, MO 64063 or by paypal to jane@kc.rr.com



Jul. 12th, 2009 07:42 pm
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Where was I during the first Moon landing?  Sitting sideways in a chair at my parents house staring at the biggest TV we had -- it was a 36" or bigger.  And yes, I stayed awake through the full broadcast.  I think everyone else in the house was asleep.  I may have sniffed a bit at the scene, which had already lived in my imagination for many years.  By the time I was 10 I was already pretty steadily reading SF, so this was just part of the future that I expected to see. 

The 30 years afterward, not so much.

On the other hand, of course, at the time of the Moon landing the disk drive had not yet been invented -- and I was an English major who had to write all those papers without benefit of a word processor.  In that area, the next 30 years was a definite improvement!
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It was interesting, as always -- the main guests were winners of the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Novel, and the winner of the Sturgeon Award for the year's best short story.  The morning was a round table, and the afternoon was a panel of the winners discussing what they think the future of publishing will be.

And so many people I knew were there -- I probably knew 1/4 of the folks attending.  One was happy to see me because she had gone for a sleep study after being nagged, and her air machine was due to arrive next week.  I told her that the best was yet to come -- the day, about a week in, where you wake up and nothing hurts.  That is the day it all makes sense.  And of course, the manager of the bookstore worked there when I did -- back in 1975, for heaven's sake.  She has been in one place for 34 years -- and of course she doesn't look it.

I took pictures, and later I'll put them up somewhere -- Facebook, Flickr, or I'll send them to Keith for the photo archive.

Tomorrow is Julie's memorial, so I won't go back to Lawrence.  I could leave now and go to tonight's party, but I think that I've driven enough for today.   Instead I'll read and try to stay out of trouble.

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It's 3:30 -- and in 2 hours I have to make up my mind whether or not to go to work.  I don't mind what I do -- it is not difficult or burdensome, though sometimes it's finicky.  But I am in the midst of reading 4 different books, and I do want to get through them slightly more than I want to even grocery shop, no less go to work. 

Of course, still being on The Diet I am also getting occasional cravings.  Right now I am interested in meat.  45 down, so I'm doing OK.  I've found that the best way to deal with a craving is to have a meal and just head right back for the diet.  Arguing with myself just blows things out of proportion.

I also need to find somewhere to buy chalk.  None in Walgreen's today when I looked.  Until I get some my  latest project is at a halt.
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Today we got the word that Ken Moore died yesterday.  Ken was the life of Southern fandom for a long time -- he hosted the legendary Kubla Kahn in Nashville.  The first time I saw him, I also saw Bob Hise, and I actually confused the two for awhile they looked so much alike -- as a matter of fact i thought they were brothers.  OK, Ken was a lot taller, but they really looked related.

Last Sunday Bob's wife died of edocrine cancer -- far too fast, and she was far too young. 

Yes, I know it's not going to improve much.  That doesn't keep me from being very sorry. 


Jun. 29th, 2009 06:41 pm
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I think the plaque was the thing that held my teeth together.  Now they are clean, but my gums are still whining hours later.   The teeth feel alien.

Today John and I went to Costco and we took one of those flatbed carts with us because he said the kitty litter was way too heavy to lift.  Oh yes -- a 40 pound brick.  It needs better handles.  I got fruit for the work party tomorrow and peanut M&Ms to give to a friend who loves them.  When John got tired, we set him on the cart and I pushed him around the store, which was rather amusing.  People kept telling him that was the way to  do it. 

I am very fortunate that I no longer huff and puff when I walk.  More than 40 down, and two months left to go.


Jun. 21st, 2009 04:11 pm
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Today at Half Price Books I copped a 2 CD set of the uncut Handel's Messiah.  I have been hunting for one ever since CDs started to replace tapes -- and that has been a good number of years.  I have a couple with selections, but that is just not the same.  For years I listened to the uncut version on Christmas Eve -- I even came to know so much of the music that I was invited to join one of the city Messiah choruses.  Unfortunately, my voice isn't really on pitch anymore.

I've also been visiting the NitroForum, a web board dedicated to discussing Heinlein.  There is some interesting stuff out there.  And there is a teaser up for a Heinlein Nexus on the web, to start 7/7/09.  I'll have to go check it out.


Jun. 20th, 2009 02:29 pm
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I look in a mirror and I am no longer bigger sideways than I am straight on.  40 pounds down plus a bit.  And I have a little over two months still to do the diet I've been on, which I will keep.  After that I am working on a plan to continue with regular grocery shopping and dieting.  

There is a rumor tht we will be laid off at the end of September.  You never know how long a layoff will last -- sometimes 2 weeks, sometimes longer.  It all depends on agency budgets.  If there is money alloted, we will keep working.  I can't see us clearing out the 14,000 cases waiting in the queue that fast.  I can only kill off 80 to 120 a day, depending on how many easy ones come my way -- and that is only one kind of case, and we do 3 kinds.

I signed up for the Campbell Conference, so I will put in my paperwork to get off work early and go to Lawrence on July 9.  For 7/10 and 7/11 I can do what I like.   And the weekend before that is 4 days long, which will be just fine -- next week we are all doing Saturday overtime in a group, and the managers are doing a lunch for everyone.

As a matter of fact, we are headed into Too Much Food with a picnic Wednesday, Margarita's Restaurant on Thursday, the lunch on Saturday and a luau the next Tuesday.  Good thing I am sticking to my diet.