Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

You know you can be killed just as dead in an unjustified war, as you can in one protecting your own home. (Will Rogers)

To save the world you asked this man to die; Would this man, could he see you now, ask why? (W.H. Auden)
31 May 2010

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Flower Show

The measure of your life won't be in what you accumulate; it will be in what you gave. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 52)


The blue and the pink hydrangeas are starting to bloom. We have about eleven of them in our yard, all grown from cuttings. In the dining room Melva has a pretty light orange amarylis blooming with two blooms. Under the carport awning the geraniums that we kept alive for several years are in bloom. There are two colors, pink and wine.

I'm working on a two-part genealogy project to extract two Baker families from my Yoho genealogy file. I'm doing this because a blog posting I made on May 16th about Isaac Baker generated a contact from a couple who has access to the research papers of Earl Carson. For the first time I was able to understand where he fits into the Baker family tree.

Mr. Dickie
30/May/2010 8:34

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Business of Living

"Do you want to become well?" are words of compassion to anyone who is trapped in an emotional prison and who has learned to function with their problem. They are words directed to the heart. (Joyce Meyer in His Miracles, Day 115)


I discovered an online program that can be used to generate personal business cards. ( The program creates a PDF file of ten cards that you can print on Avery 8371 card stock. I misplaced my Avery program that I used in the past for this project. I wanted to make some new cards with my Gmail address.

Cyndi spent the night at our house after she returned from a tiring business trip to Iowa this week. That as a nice surprise.

I found a copy of an old program I like called, MindReader. It's on a large floppy. I wonder if I can get someone in the computer club to copy the disk to a floppy.

Mr. Dickie
29/May/2010 9:47

Friday, May 28, 2010

Whose Fault Is It?

The next time your pride is hurt and you feel anger rising up within you, don't assume that you are right and everyone else is at fault. (The One-Year Mini For Men, 22 May)


Stifling hot weather arrived yesterday. During the long winter we'd almost forgotten how hot a car can become sitting in the sun. We hope everyone will remember this so we won't have any heartbreaking stories of pets or children dying this summer.

I've misplaced my Avery label printing program. It was installed on my laptop computer when it broke. I've been looking for the CD, off and on, for about a week. Today I'm going to see if they offer a free copy of the program for downloading. It's no fun losing your marbles.

Recently the Google blog photo uploading routine broke. The screen that opens after the upload doesn't display all of the information. It took a few minutes to realize that I can just close the broken display to complete the process. I have no idea what changed. I hate when this kind of thing happens.

Mr. Dickie
28/May/2010 8:34

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Whole Nation Decays

(One of the TIFF images I converted to JPEG this morning.)

Nothing can be right when every man does what is right in his own eyes. ... When spiritual leaders fail to obey God and set godly examples, the church and the community suffer, and ultimately the whole nation decays. (Warren W. Wiersbe, Chapter-by-Chapter Bible Commentary, p. 153)


This morning I did my first "batch" conversion of image files in the Religion folder of the CD I bought the other day. It worked. The five TIFF images were converted to JPEG images. Now I can use them on my Google blogs.

Today I am feeling the affects of all of the yardwork I did yesterday. Melva is putting some MiracleGro on her tomato plants this morning.

Mr. Dickie
27/May/2010 10:10

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How Little I Know

Try to learn from the past, rather than repeating it and making references to it all the time. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 67)


There was a special 50% off sale yesterday on CDs and tapes at the thrift store. I bought 2100 photos in the TIFF format for 71 cents. I had to download and install the program IrfanView to convert the photos to JPEG. This reminded me just how little I know about using graphic file formats. I can't use TIFF files on my Google blogs. I converted two of the photos. To complete my testing I'm going to post them today on this blog and on the Arrow Prayers blog.

I didn't realize that our FIOS service was going to let us have free access to the Tennis Channel during the French Open. Melva is enjoying having more tennis to watch than there are hours in the day. I wonder how we were supposed to know that the Tennis Channel was turned on.

I continued to work on my genealogy edit project. One of the things I'm trying to do is enter nicknames in the Nickname field when I notice one recorded with the AKA tag in the note field.

Mr. Dickie
26/May/2010 7:58

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Neurotic Trap

... [Put] an end to the neurotic trap of chasing after what you don't want in your life. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Real Magic, p. 168)


Nothing on my mind this morning that I want to talk about.

Mr. Dickie
25/May/2010 10:05

Monday, May 24, 2010


Most of life is learning and growing, falling and getting back up, forgiving and forgetting, accepting and going on. (Charles R. Swindoll, Wisdom For The Way, p. 13)


I'm working on a genealogy edit project. I'm trying to improve the way the "notes" print from my own genealogy file. I'd like the name of the person to be the first line in their note. It's easy to include this information when the note is typed. It's tedious to go back to add the name when there are thousands of records in a file.

Mr. Dickie
24/May/2010 8:10

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Peace of Mind

We can find peace of mind and real fulfillment only through devotion to something above and beyond ourselves. (One Day At A Time in Al-Anon, 1 May)


We spent five hours at the VFW Flea Market yesterday. When we arrived the space Melva thought she had reserved wasn't ready. I tracked down the lady in charge and got permission to set up the table myself. There was a sticking spill on the floor that needed to be cleaned up. Some vendors set up outside and it seemed like many of the people who stopped never made it inside the hall. Those who did come by the table were reluctant to spend money. They charged $25.00 for a space which was really too much based on the number of potential customers that showed up.

Cyndi came by the flea market near the end. We all went to the SamLina in Riverdale to eat lunch.

23/May/2010 8:07

Saturday, May 22, 2010


I have much more to be grateful for than I realize. Too often I don't remember to give thought to all the things in my life that I could enjoy and appreciate. (One Day At A time In Al-Anon, 5 May)
22/May/2010 18:54

Friday, May 21, 2010

If Things Are Not Working

If things are not working, ask yourself, "In what way am I creating this? In what way can I change? What is the lesson? (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 60)


Melva was off work yesterday. She had someone else fill in for her. She went to the shop anyway because she had one appointment with a new customer at 5:00 p.m. I went along. I visited the Crofton library. I checked out ten CDs. I hadn't been to that library in several months. We went to supper at Bob Evans after Melva finished. They must have been short-staffed in the kitchen. Melva noticed that folks all around us were calling for the manager.

In the morning we went to the 25% off sale at the nearby thrift shop. I had a good day. I bought a plastic wastebasket to replace the broken one under my paper shredder. VHS tapes were selling for 30 cents each. I bought the first two Harry Potter movies and the two-tape Doctor Zhivago. I paid $1.43 for a Bluegrass CD by Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver - My Heart Is Yours. I heard this band sing once at a free Library of Congress concert that had to be held indoors because of rain. I've been looking for a copy of the 2009 issue of Daily Guideposts. I found a like-new copy for $1.06. I think I have every year except 2010. I'm reading from three copies this year. I have read all of the others in my collection. I'll probably save the 2009 book to read in 2011.

At mid-day I attended the twice-monthly computer club meeting. Two employees of Verizon FIOS were the guest speakers. They were both managers and very quickly got into trouble with technical questions and comments. The "top dog" started looking at his watch and the wall clock and finally "bailed" about 2:00 p.m. They were lucky that more of the engineers in the club didn't ask them questions. I felt sorry for them because I know it's difficult to speak in front of a group.

My Google blog posts no longer automatically feed to Facebook "notes" every day. A few days ago three postings arrived on the same day. The following day the posting didn't get picked up. I don't control what happens, so there is nothing I can do about it.

Mr. Dickie
21/May/2010 8:57

Thursday, May 20, 2010


We are not yet what we should be, what we can be, or what we will be ... (John MacArthur, Truth For Today, 9 May)

We must constantly be on guard because sometimes we do not know what the lesson was until we have failed the test! (Warren W. Wiersbe, Chapter-By-Chapter Bible Commentary, p. 147)
20/May/2010 8:34

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A Natural Crisis

One incident of lawlessness can cause a natural crisis. (Warren W. Wiersbe, Chapter-By-Chapter Bible Commentary, p. 153)


Yesterday former coworker Bill Hamilton and I enjoyed a very nice three-hour lunch at The Red Lobster in Lanham, Maryland. We covered lots of topics. When we said goodbye in the parking lot we agreed to get together again in June.

Today Melva plans to work for a few hours before going to the Hair Cuttery in Edgewater, Maryland for a class. She is familiar with the two roads she will be using.

Senator Arlan Specter of Pennsylvania, who didn't know whether he was a Republican or a Democrat, was defeated in the primary yesterday. I take my hat off to the citizens of Pennsylvania for sending this message to Senator Specter and the other politicians. We must hold every elected official accountable. Historically we have plenty of evidence to illustrate what happens when we don't.

Mr. Dickie
19/May/2010 9:18

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Serenity is like gravity, you can't see it and you can't touch it, but you can feel it. (As We Understood, p. 130)


Lunch today at the Red Lobster with former coworker, Bill Hamilton.

It's raining again today. The plants and grass all look lovely. The peonies are in bloom. The azaleas that were damaged during the winter are showing new growth. The ones transplanted in the fall appear to be surviving the shock of being moved.

Mr. Dickie
18/May/2010 8:56

Monday, May 17, 2010

John Michael Murto - Celebration of Life

John Michael Murto
(14 Mar 1946 - 11 May 2010)

Celebration of Life

Yesterday afternoon I drove sixty-eight miles to Boonsboro, Maryland. It was my first time to Middletown, where Roland Nelson lived, and to Boonsboro. I gained an even greater appreciation for just how difficult it must have been for everyone who lived out that far to commute to work on Capitol Hill.

The purpose of the trip was to attend the Celebration of Life for former co-worker, John Michael Murto (14 Mar 1946 - 11 May 2010) who worked on The Bill Digest when I did. The event was held at the American Legion. So many of John and Ellie's friends attended it was necessary to bring out more tables and chairs. I didn't try to count how many were there. I estimate there were over two hundred.

Near the door there was a book for the guests to sign. Along the wall several tables displayed photos and other memorablia such as membership cards. There was a copy of an article that appeared in The Library of Congress newsletter at the time Sarah joined John and Ellie to complete their family.

There was a computer driven photo show on a screen on the opposite wall.

I sat at a table next to the mayor of Boonsboro during the remembrance ceremony.

Mrs. Murto opened the ceremony by welcoming the attendees.

Three members of the American Legion did the military honors. First one of the men play the bugle. I couldn't tell if he really played or if they used a recording. Next they moved to the front of the room where they folded a United States flag that was laying across a table. After the folding ritual they presented the flag to Mrs. Murto.

A gentleman, whose name I didn't catch, said a long prayer that he had written for John. I found it quite moving.

After the prayer the guests were invited to partake of the food displayed beautifully on two tables, one for the meat to make sandwiches and one for the attractive and very tasty deserts. There was even one decorated in red, white, and blue.

Before going to get something to eat I spent a few minutes talking separately with both Ellie and Sarah. It was the first time I'd met them. I told Ellie that I had come as Roland Nelson's surrogate. Ellie said she'd like to remain on the Email lists.

When I got to the end of the food table I saw Bill Hamilton getting a couple of drinks. He was there with his wife, Mary. Bill made several trips to visit John during his illness. After Bill delivered a drink to Mary he came to the table where I was eating We talked about the visits to see John, about our health and a little about when Bill was a member of my Bill Digest programming team. Bill suggested that we meet for lunch sometime at The Red Lobster near my house. I wrote my new Email address on my business card and gave it to Bill so we can work out the details via Email. I'm reasonably certain that Bill and I were the only Library of Congress employees there.

Mr. Dickie
17/May/2010 13:52

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Act of Giving

Wisdom is avoiding all thoughts that weaken you. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, 10 Secrets For Success and Inner Peace, p. 143)

"The act of giving is more important than the merit of the receiver." (Glen Kittler in Daily Guideposts - 1990, by Arthur Gordon, 15 February)


Yesterday we went to Bowie to the yard sale of one of Melva's customers. I bought a couple of notepads, a packet of blank business cards and two packages of Thank You cards. At another place we bought a trash can that we will probably give to a neighbor where there is always trash on the ground on trash day.

Late in the afternoon we went for a four-lap walk at Schrom Park. The parking lots were full of cars. This time there were even a few people walking on the paved pathway around the park.

I'm testing a new "text" file viewer program. This one is neat because it can create a PDF file.

Mr. Dickie
16/May/2010 7:44

Saturday, May 15, 2010


And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life's span? (Luke 12:25 in Wisdom For The Way by Charles R. Swindoll, p. 127)
15/May/2010 11:51

Friday, May 14, 2010

Keep Walking

If enough of us shied away from conflict and confrontation, just imagine how much war we could eliminate. (Wayne Dyer, Staying on the Path, p. 18)


Melva and I went to the Langley Park thrift store yesterday. I forgot to take the 25% discount card into store. While Melva shopped I went back to the van to get the card. The amount of stuff being donated to these stores boggles the mind.

I'm working on an Email address file that can be viewed with my free CSVed program. Yesterday I added another field to each record because I want to keep track of the "group" a person belongs in. The reason I created my own file is to insure that I won't lose the information if something happens to my computer or to Google or AOL. I'll keep backup copies of the file elsewhere.

Yesterday I took a 35-minute walk in the neighborhood. I listened to music on my Oasis MP3/WMA player while I walked. Lately I've noticed a younger man out walking. He walks at a much faster pace than I do. It's unusual to see anyone else taking a walk in "the hood."

Mr. Dickie
14/May/2010 9:13

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A New Day

Circular flowerbed in the center of the backyard
Shed with hanging birdfeeder in the background
May 2010

Only when we forget what we were taught do we start to have real knowledge. (Henry David Thoreau in A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy, 9 January)


Yesterday I walked for 45-minutes in the neighborhood. I stopped to look at the new double-wide concrete driveway that two of the Hispanics poured at the place where they live. They fixed a big mess. We are hopeful that there will soon be new neighbors living in the house next to them. There are no signs of renovation yet on the house on the other side of the the place with the new driveway. This house was rented for a long time has been vacant for months. I'll bet it's a mess inside. During my walk I noticed citation sitckers from the county on one house and one van. I'd hate to find one of those stickers on our property. You can't remove them from a piece of glass. The sticker shreds and leaves the adhesive on the glass.

My friend, Raj, and I talked on the phone last night. Several more folks will be retiring from The Library of Congress next month. I know some of them and worked with one of them.

Cyndi put in a hard week at work. She traveled to Kansas City, MO on Sunday and didn't arrive back at her apartment until after midnight last night.

Another one of my genealogy friends accepted my "friend request" on Facebook. I still have several more requests pending.

I made myself a little database of Email addresses just in case something goes wrong with my AOL or Gmail contact information. I used my CSV program to create the file and I printed out a one-page list of the information. Lately, several of my friends have lost Email addresses. In my list are friends at the computer club and former co-workers at The Library of Congress.

Mr. Dickie
13/May/2010 9:59

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

John Murto Obituary

"John Michael Murto, age 64, of Boonsboro, Maryland passed away early on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at his home surrounded by his loving family."

John Murto was one of my co-workers at the Library of Congress. For a time we both worked on the Bill Digest project.

Mr. Dickie

Bank On It!

Because a thing seems difficult for you, do not think it is impossible for anyone to accomplish. But whatever is possible for another, believe that you, too, are capable of it. (Marcus Aurelius in One Day At A Time in Al-Anon, 24 April)


Lots of bank business yesterday.

  • I had to visit one failed bank to tell them that we are willing to continue to do business with them. Otherwise, the federal government would require them to give our money to the state.
  • I called another bank to tell them, "I'm not dead." Otherwise, at some point they would close the Certificate of Deposit accounts and send the money to another state.
  • And, finally I called another bank to let them know that I was willing to let them have my money for another twenty-four months at the paltry interest rate of 1.15%. Otherwise, I could have withdrawn the money and put it in a sock under the mattress.

Is there any reason to feel good about any of this?

Mr. Dickie
12/May/2010 8:55

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Every moment that you spend, in despair, in anguish, angry, or hurt because of the behavior of anybody else in your life is a moment in which you've given up control of your life. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying on the Path, p. 24)
11/May/2010 8:11

Monday, May 10, 2010

Beautiful Spring

... when ... clear moments come, I am always left with a feeling that the truth which has been revealed to me is so obvious that I wonder how I could have missed it for so long. (As We Understood, p. 132)


This morning we are enjoying our flower garden. We installed the new plastic birdbath that Melva received from me as a Mother's Day gift. We got lucky and found one on Friday, while in Annapolis, when Cyndi stopped at a place selling lawn furniture and jacuzzis. We needed to replace a birdbath with a cast concrete top. Those break too often. Now we are watching to see which bird will come to the new birdbath first. Because it's shallow it's going to be interesting to see whether they like it for getting a drink or taking a bath.

We observed four baby mockingbirds at the top of our next door neighbor's tree. Both parents were busy feeding the babies the whole time we were outside.

Melva transplanted the red White House tulip bulbs from her circular garden in the front yard to a better spot in the backyard. She also transplanted a volunteer Rose of Sharon to near the backyard fence. We are trying to fill in a spot where we recently lost a Rose of Sharon that had been there for many years.

We have two cages where we share blocks of suet with the birds. One is in the backyard hanging on the clothesline pole. The newest is just outside the kitchen window, under the carport awning. It spun around because it wasn't installed properly. This morning I cut two pieces of wire and hooked the basket to them. That stopped the rotation and immediately two or three birds were able to hang on the cage at the same time. Even the male and female cardinals were able to get something to eat. The two mockingbirds came, one right after the other, once they noticed that I'd corrected the spinning problem.

We both enjoy watching the shrubs and flowers blooming and the birds as they come to feed. On the other clothesline pole we hang a bird feeder given to us my our neighbor, Jim. Right now the iris and the columbine are in bloom. Some of the azaleas still have fading blossoms. It's a wonderful time of the year.

Mr. Dickie
10/May/2010 11:50

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day - 2010

... A mother doesn't get mothering lessons from any human teacher, she knows in her heart what is required to have that perfect, miraculous relationship. She gives unconditionally of her very own body so that her child might live. She asks nothing in return. She is totally connected to her child on an invisible level, and in awe of the little miracle that she holds at her breast. She knows within exactly what to do -- to give without any expectations. She is willing to take the worst that the child has to give and respond only with love and affection. She looks past the inconveniences and the flaws, and has only love to offer. She is on purpose, and because mothers live at purpose we survive as human beings. Without the unconditional love that mothers feel for their young, we would all perish in a few days from neglect. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Real Magic, p. 171)
9/May/2010 7:13

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Nothing Is

Nothing is, unless our thinking makes it so. (William Shakespeare in 10 Secrets For Success and Inner Peace, by Dr. Wayne Dyer, p. 143)
8 May 2010

Friday, May 7, 2010

It's My Birthday!

Nothing constructive results from meeting anger with anger; nobody wins the battle in which control is lost. (One Day At A Time in Al-Anon, 18 April)

The best way to destroy today is to regret "yesterday" and worry about "tomorrow." (Warren W. Wiersbe, Chapter-By-Chapter Bible Commentary)


Today is my 71st birthday. There have been many times when I doubted I'd see this day. I'm grateful to good doctors and other health professionals who guided and cared for me during the difficult times. Our daughter, Cyndi, took the day off from work today. She will take us out to eat lunch at the Edgewater, near Annapolis, where we will celebrate my birthday and Mother's Day.

On Thursday I attended the computer club meeting. The guest speaker was Tavon Jones, Apple Computer consultant at the Best Buy store in Annapolis, Maryland. This was the second time he came to speak to the group. He gave another outstanding talk. He brought along the new Apple IPad and passed it around for everyone to look at. Someone donated some items. I brought home a copy of the Broderbund Screen Capture program which should install on my Windows 2000 operating system.

Mr. Dickie
7/May/2010 7:49

Thursday, May 6, 2010

What Was I Thinking?

To dwell upon a thought is to give it energy. To act upon a thought is to give it life ... When we give something place within our nature, it manifests itself physically and spiritually. Giving place to negative thoughts by repeating them, pondering them, gnawing on them, gives them energy and thus the power to transform us into their image. (Betty J. Eadie, Embraced By The Light, 6 May)
6/May/2010 8:28

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Breaking Bread

The contented, well-adjusted person has no need to look for flaws in others. (One Day At A Time in Al-Anon, 1 April)


Sometimes I ask myself why I work on the genealogy of families that aren't my relations. I've never come up with what I consider a good answer. The closest I've come is, "I like working on the puzzle and enjoy seeing how many families of Monroe county, Ohio I can link together." A second possibility is that it's a way to avoid doing the things I should be doing.

Yesterday we stopped at the Vista Gardens shopping center to eat lunch at the Panera. I was pleasantly surprised when I looked behind us, just after we placed our order, and noticed former colleagues and union board members Tim and Linda. We enjoyed the opportunity to eat lunch together.

Mr. Dickie
5/May/2010 7:57

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Daily News

Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions. (Charles R. Swindoll, Wisdom For The Way, p. 119)


Since this weekend I made seven more Facebook friends. I'm looking forward to staying in closer touch. There's a possibility of getting a few more favorable replies to all of the requests I generated from my Gmail address file.

I'm having fun extracting and sharing information from some of my genealogy files. I particularly like what I can share with the Individual Summary report. All I need to do to get it ready to post to my Google genealogy blog is make minor edits to the list of children. I can have a report posted in less than ten minutes.

I'm running out of quotes to post to my blogs. When I find something I like I write the quote on a notepad. For the first time in months there are only six pages available and some of them have only one unposted quote. Perhaps the things I have been reading haven't been "speaking to me" as much as usual. Maybe I'm not paying enough attention.

Mr. Dickie
4/May/2010 8:43

Monday, May 3, 2010

Falling Rocks

We are made for ... the ordinary things of life, and that is where we have to prove our stamina and strength ... (Oswald Chambers in His Miracles, Day 99)


Any article about the Tisher family that I extracted from a piece by Mrs. Fedorchak was published in The Navigator of the Monroe County Ohio Genealogical Society.

I went for a walk in the neighborhood yesterday. It was hot enough to be somewhat unpleasant. A teenage boy, who jumped the fence on the deadend of 76th Avenue to get into our area, was walking around carrying a brick and acting like he was going to throw it at a smaller boy who came over the fence with him. I never like seeing kids with rocks or bricks in their hands because of the many incidents where someone has thrown one through the windows of our houses.

Mr. Dickie
3/May/2010 8:02

Sunday, May 2, 2010

New Facebook Friends

The highest form of ignorance is to reject something you know nothing about. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 21)


Yesterday I skipped blog posting. We went out early to yard sales in Bowie, MD. I didn't find anything to buy. I'm looking for medium-sized flower pots. We never have enough. Afterwards we stopped at Friendly's in Crofton for breakfast. I also neglected my daily reading.

l'm still working on the project to extract information from the Monroe County Ohio pedigree chart book. It's fun to link the various families together.

I let Facebook use my Gmail address file to search for more potential friends. I was surprised at how many were suggested. I'm not certain that I followed all of the steps correctly. I did quickly receive positive responses from four or five people. One was a cousin, one was an AOL genealogy chatroom friend, one was a First Day Cover collector friend, one was a genealogy friend from the Kyger family. I can't figure out who the fifth person might be.

Melva and I went for a four-lap walk at Schrom Park. There were lots of people using the park. There were only three of us walking on the circular trail.

Mr. Dickie
2/May/2010 8:25