Saturday, April 14, 2012


Tony Walker

As an airplane is about to crash, a female passenger jumps up frantically and announces, "If I'm going to die, I want to die feeling like a woman."
She removes all her clothing and asks, "Is there someone on this plane who is man enough to make me feel like a woman?"
A man stands up, removes his shirt and says, "Here, iron this!

Friday, April 13, 2012


Not many colleges can say they've canceled classes because 'the British invaded.' The College of William & Mary is the second-oldest college in America. The original plans for the College date back to 1618—decades before Harvard—but were derailed by an “Indian uprising.”

On February 8, 1693, King William III and Queen Mary II of England signed the charter for a “perpetual College of Divinity, Philosophy, Languages, and other good Arts and Sciences” to be founded in the Virginia Colony. And William & Mary was born.

Workers began construction on the Sir Christopher Wren Building, then known simply as the College Building in 1695, before the town of Williamsburg even existed. Over the next two centuries, the Wren Building would burn on three separate occasions, each time being re-built inside the original walls. That makes the Wren the oldest college building in America, and possibly the most flammable.

The College has been called “the Alma Mater of a Nation” because of its close ties to America’s founding fathers. A 17-year-old George Washington received his surveyor's license through the College and would return as its first American chancellor. Thomas Jefferson received his undergraduate education here, as did presidents John Tyler and James Monroe.

William & Mary is famous for its firsts: the first U.S. institution with a Royal Charter, the first Greek-letter society (Phi Beta Kappa, founded in 1776), the first student honor code and the first law school in America.

The College became a state-supported school in 1906 and went coed in 1918. In 1928, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. chose the Wren as the first building to be returned to its 18th-century appearance as part of the iconic Colonial Williamsburg restoration.

The College of William and Mary appears to house several spirits who are enjoying everything but rest in the afterlife. A soldier who fought in the Revolutionary War met his death in a small room that is to the back of the college due to a gunshot injury he received while fighting. This occurred on the third floor of the college. Several students and individuals who work at the school have claimed that they have seen a soldier in spirit form walking in a mist-like state around the area where he reportedly passed.

There are several areas around this college that appear to have hauntings. One such place is the building that is named “Brafferton”. It was in this building, which several tribes of Indian boys  were sent to learn behaviors and beliefs that surround the Christian faith. When the boys arrived for rehabilitation, several of them were lacking in nutrition and fell ill. They were not at all happy with being separated from their tribes, and attempted to escape several times. Unfortunately, for many it was too late and they ended up dying.
The spirits of students who were forced to attend the Indian school that was housed in the Brafferton are said to run across campus at night. The best time to sneak a peek is on misty night in the Sunken Garden. The ghosts run a few feet above the ground down the length of the Garden.

 It is believed that these spirits still roam the building, trying to escape.
Arguably the most famous campus ghost, this haunt visits students who choose to pull all-nighters in the classroom on the third floor of St. George Tucker Hall. The ghost’s identity is yet unknown, as it has been rumored to be anyone ranging from a resident of Colonial Williamsburg during the Revolution to a disgruntled or suicidal student at the College.

Students reportedly began hearing mysterious footsteps in the Wren Building shortly after the Revolutionary War. They claimed that the ghosts were French soldiers who died in the building, although nowadays students maintain that it is Sir Christopher Wren himself, roaming the very building he designed.
Underground steam tunnels exist on both Old and Ancient Campus. The tunnels are said to connect to the Wren Chapel burial vault, located in the basement of the Wren Building. In 1977, access to the crypt from the tunnels was blocked with the addition of a padlocked steel door to prevent vandalism. During that time, supposedly, it was popular for fraternity brothers to sneak into the crypt and steal a bone from the tomb of James Blair. It is rumored that secret societies use these tunnels to move around campus.

There are at least nine secret societies on campus, including The 7s, The 13s, The Alphas, The Bishop James Madisons and The Flat Hats. Look for signs of them throughout the year, particularly around the time of Homecoming and graduation. If they deem you worthy, you may be contacted by them out of gratitude for your contribution to the College community or even invited to join their closeted rankings.

The legend behind the Crim Dell is that if you walk across it’s bridge with your significant other and kiss at the top, you are destined to marry that person and be in love forever. If you break up, however, you will remain cursed unless one member of the hopeless couple pushes the other into the Crim Dell. It’s never agreed upon as to who should be chucked over the edge — girls will say it’s the boy who should be pushed, and boys will say it’s the girl. Avoid walking across it alone, however, unless you want to be doomed to a life of loneliness.

Less grave, however, is the myth surrounding the statue of Lord Botetourt. Allegedly, if you touch the statue, you’ll get a good grade on your next test. Couldn’t hurt to try, right?



Elegant fingers intertwined with his as she fell slightly ahead of him in the mob leading him hand in hand away from the bar.  It was impulsive.  Reckless.  But, after losing herself in his kiss she was willing to abandon reason. Rushing thoughts trying to fill her with doubt. There was a time her heart had been crippled from the pain of losing him. From the pain of doing the right thing for the wrong reasons. To please the wrong people. 
They had once been so close to everything. And, then there was naught. She walked on, weaving the crowd. Nothing was greater then the risk that came with embracing this moment. Nothing greater then the loneliness that pierces your soul, behind a bright smile and a full life.
Exhilarated by the strong rhythm reverberating in her chest. She wanted her heart to keep beating like this...  To be uncontrollably aware of being alive and not just moving through motions. This was the type of moment, that affirms that heaven does exist. Makes you believe, that right here, in this moment is where you are supposed to be. The moment you know and say to yourself, “all I need is this right now”.
She looked back over her shoulder as they neared the exit.  Meeting his glance, her pulse quickened and a void inside her seemed to diminish with each passing second.  Years melting away as a connection of heart, mind, and soul, seized to the forefront in an instant. The frenzy of looming passion teased at all of his senses.  His loins aching a he moved closer to her, both of them pausing in the flood of people waiting to exit and enter the bar.  A few more steps and the multitude of the holiday horde was left behind them.  The pub music fading while the sounds of the city at night overwhelmed them.
She felt her breath catch in her throat. No plan had been erected, yet it was evolving with every step that they took on the noisy avenue.  She knew there was no turning back.  Nor did she want to, she’d not turn away from this again. Slightly shivering as the voice in her head silently shouted, “No regrets”.  Just the stroke of his thumb on the back of her hand excited her libido as her nipples tingled and tightened under silk camisole beneath her dress.  
She released his hand and stepped off the curb. Stiletto boots clicking the pavement with each stride.  As her long garnet painted nails lead her hand into the air, her voice loud, throaty and untamed, “Taxi”.


Baked Fresh Ham with Herbs

14-pound fresh ham, bone in (shank and leg portion of pork)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dry rubbed sage
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
11/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs (4 to 6 slices of bread)
1/3 cup (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted (3 ounces)
10-ounce box frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained
Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Trim the fat to an even 1/8-inch thickness. Prick the ham all over and cut 11/2-inch-deep gashes evenly over top of the ham (on the side with the fat).
    This will be the “top” of the ham, where you will “stuff” the stuffing.
  3. Place the garlic, onion, parsley, celery, thyme, sage, and mustard in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process to a paste, then stir together in a bowl with the breadcrumbs, melted butter, and spinach to create the stuffing. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Press the stuffing deep into the gashes; fingers work best. Place the ham fat side up on a rack in the roasting pan. Roast for 20 minutes, then turn the oven down to 325 degrees.
    Begin checking the ham after 4 hours. Roast until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees (approximately 51/2 hours total cooking time).
  5. Let sit at room temperature, covered loosely with foil, for at least 30 minutes. The internal temperature should rise to 155 degrees.
  6. Make the gravy while the roast is resting.

Thursday, April 12, 2012




Barbara Ward-Finneran
Our time is limited. Everything can change in an instant, so don't waste time not being all that you desire. Not reaching for your goals or not finishing the journey.  Never let the "noise" drown out your own inner voice. Have the courage to trust your spirit and intuition. Look to your heart to find your vision, your soul to find your dreams, and your mind to awaken to all that you are meant to be!

Keep the promises that you make to yourself!

Photo Courtesy of Barbara Ward-Finneran and Drawn 2 Design, LLC
©  All Rights Reserved


4 pounds (8 to 10) potato peeled
1 cup water
1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic,
2 teaspoons coarse salt

2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon coarsely-ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Cut potatoes lengthwise into thick wedges; place in 13 x 9-inch baking dish.
In a small bowl, whisk together water, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, oregano, and pepper; pour over potatoes, turning to coat evenly.
Bake approximately 1 hour, gently turning occasionally to keep potatoes well moistened, or until potatoes are very tender and moist, and most of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from oven and serve.
Makes 8 servings.


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Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Tony Walker
In March my little girl turned 13. I officially have a teenage daughter!
Watching our kids get older is a reminder of how fast time is going isn't it?
For me & probably many of you it is also a reminder of something very fearful.
What's going to happen??
My daughter is autistic. High functioning but still autistic.
Will she be be able to get a job?
Will she able to hold that job?
Will the job be something she enjoys or will she be wiping tables at some restaurant?
Will she be able to have her own place?
Will she be able to fulfill her dream of getting married & having 4 kids?
Will she be ok????
I am worried. I am very freaking worried. 
Most likely my son will do the right thing by looking out for his sister, help her out, etc. But it's not fair to him. Who knows where his dreams will take him.
Sometimes I tell myself not to worry... focus on the now. Other times I get crazy because high school graduation is right around the corner. I don't wanna be holding my dick & wondering what the hell do I do now!
How do you guys handle this? Do you plan or do you not worry???


What makes a mom a bully?
There seems to be an assumption that since moms are often the ones working with the kids to combat childhood bullying, they must be immune from the problem. Not at all. We may call it adult cliques, or even put it off to the social structure of the town, but what makes a bully is the same in every place and every age. One website lists bullying as "persistent unwelcome behavior, mostly using unwarranted or invalid criticism, nit-picking, fault-finding, also exclusion, isolation, being singled out and treated differently, being shouted at, humiliated, excessive monitoring, having verbal and written warnings imposed, and much more." How often has that happened in your community. Heck, in your playgroup?

Call it what it is: You won't be popular, but bullying issues need to be addressed at all levels, for the health of the whole community.

  • Be prepared for backlash: The bullying behaviors you are trying to squelch may become more intense at first in response. No one likes having their less than stellar behaviors called out; they can get defensive.

  • Don't stoop to their level: Engaging in some of the same negative behaviors can feel like the easy thing to do, especially when the bullying behaviors are directed at you. It's not, however, the right thing to do.

  • Look for and accept support where you can: I bet that if you bring it up, someone will quietly contact you in support. Maybe more than one, and maybe that small group can be the genesis of change going forward.

  • Work for a solution:
    Try, if at all possible, to focus on the end result, the desired positive outcome. Ask for more discourse on the topic, again and again if you have to. Ask for the training materials that are used with the kids to be used in your group.
  • Tuesday, April 10, 2012

    HE SAID.... Ladies I have a question for you...

    Tony Walker
    OK ladies.... I have a question for you.
    Is there such a thing as common decency? If so, what is it?

    We all have certain lines we won't cross when we're with people we don't know very well. But when we're with people we know very well those lines get blurred.

    I hope this isn't sexist... but in my experiences it's a woman who will be the first to complain that a line has been crossed. 

    Lately I've been having a conversation with a friend who is a woman. I will be the first to admit that I've done & said some crazy things in front of this woman. Was I trying to be offensive? No. Was I purposely crossing a line? No.

    But I am being told that if I had any common decency I never would've "went there" in the first place. 
    Let me throw in here that by this woman's own admission she did not make it known that she was uncomfortable.

    I have to admit... I don't understand this. I am not agreeing or disagreeing... I don't understand. 
    Is someone crossing a line if they don't know it? Once they know it they should respect their boundaries (which I have done) but I am being told I should've known better in the first place. 
    Don't we all push our boundaries & say politically incorrect things around close friends? Don't we all push or stay back depending on who we're with? So who is to say what is common decency?
    Or am I getting it all wrong? Maybe common decency are the obvious lines that no one crosses.... I don't know.

    Let me make something clear here.... I am not judging anyone for having a line. Just because I don't have one doesn't means you shouldn't either. BUT I don't  expect to be judged because I don't have one or because my version of common decency is different from someone else's. 
    So help me out. What's your version of common decency?

    Monday, April 9, 2012


    Barbara Ward-Finneran

    Knowing you get to choose.

    Moving forward.  

    The memories in your heart.

    Faith, family and friends. 

    Having dinner together.

    Belly laughs with your kids.

    Standing your ground for all the right reasons.

    Keeping the promises that you make to yourself!


    Marion Pellicano Ambrose

    Thomas Kinkade, the “Painter of Light” died Friday at the young age of 54. Kinkade is reported to have died of “natural causes” although no cause of death was released. His family is planning a private funeral service.

    I happen to have been a great fan of Thomas Kinkade. He was highly criticized by the art community for selling reproductions of his paintings. I for one am grateful. Many people, including myself, would never be able to afford an original painting. Because of Thomas Kinkade, I have 3 beautiful paintings that I thoroughly enjoy on a daily basis. I was also able to give one to a friend as a Christmas gift, which she loved by the way!

     Kinkade painted life the way I want it to be! His soft colors infused with light, nature scenes, cottages tucked into the mountainside with a babbling brook alongside, are the stuff my dreams are made of. Apparently I’m not alone! Kinkade painted over 1,000 works and it is estimated that 1 in every 20 homes in the US have one of his paintings hanging on the wall! I know several people who have multiple Kinkade’s hanging in a place of honor.
    It saddens me that there will be no more paintings of beautiful lighthouses, cheery cottages or rainy streets with Victorian houses and old cars with that special glow that only Kinkade was able to capture.

     The world has lost a great artist and author. His work will live on, much like that of the great Norman Rockwell.  I know generations to come will enjoy and value the work of “the Painter of Light”.

    Sunday, April 8, 2012


    On Easter weekend, those of the Christian faith celebrate the crucifixion and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. However, the observation of Easter did not originate with Christianity. Read on to learn about the true origin of the holiday.

    “Easter” was taken from “Eastre”. She was the goddess worshipped by the Saxon peoples of Northern Europe. They held festivals every year to celebrate the Spring Equinox - the one time during the spring when the day and the night are of equal length. The festivals were believed to ensure the fertility of both the land and its people.

    In ancient times, those of the Jewish faith celebrated Passover around this same time of the year. The Passover feast commemorated the Israelite captivity in Egypt under the cruel hand of the pharaoh. The last plague that God sent on the land was that of the death of every firstborn. Blood on the doorposts of Israelite households spared them as the Angel of Death spread through the land.

    Christians decided to celebrate what we now know as Easter at this time also. Early followers were persecuted even after Jesus’ crucifixion. As a result, they held their religious observances to coincide with the pagan holidays. They called their remembrance, Easter - a derivative of Eastre. The idea behind the two occasions is different, but they share common symbols and traditions that people still use today.

    The Easter bunny

     The rabbit was the symbol of Eastre, the Saxon goddess. The idea of the rabbit as a part of Christian tradition was introduced in colonial days by the Germans. Children are taught that the Easter Bunny brings treats on the night before Easter, much like Santa Claus during Christmas.

    The Cross

    The symbol of the cross has been associated with Christianity and Easter since the first centuries after Jesus’ death. The cross was a symbol of cruelty throughout the Roman Empire. Today, those who practice Christianity view it as a badge of courage and salvation.

    Easter Eggs

    Easter Eggs became the symbol of resurrection of Jesus Christ—rebirth of mankind. Christians embraced the Easter Egg and compared it to the tomb from which Christ resurrected. In fact, Easter Eggs are also exchanged as gifts among friends and relatives for the celebration of Easter.

    Easter Lamb

    Easter Lamb is a significant symbol of Easter celebrations throughout the world. Easter Lamb symbolized Christ with a flag of victory. This symbol is seen in every Central and Eastern European family. Lamb also forms the center of attraction of Easter dinner table. Importance of Lamb has its roots in the Jewish tradition of Pesah. Pasch Lamb was also very famous.

    Easter Lily

    Trumpet-shaped flower, Easter Lily is a fragrant flower, all in pure white. With this flower, people celebrate and enjoy the very essence of life as well as Easter. This flower is significant because it is said to have sprung from the place where the sweat of Jesus Christ fell. This flower is said to usher in the greater significance of new life—new blooms and new meaning for Easter.

    Hot Cross Buns

    Christians are in their high spirits during this occasion since this festival has a tremendous importance for them in their religious faith. It is celebrated and welcomed with lots of love and warmth and by feasting with scrumptious food. Easter Hot Cross Buns are typical Easter Specials/Symbols. The pastry on the top of the bun reminds us of the cross on which Lord Christ was crucified. Hence, this holds a great significance for all Christians.


    One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could touch and

    bless them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. When

    Jesus saw what was happening, he was angry with his disciples. He said to

    them, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of

    God belongs to those who are like these children” Mark 10:13-14

    To feel secure, all children need is a loving look and gentle touch from someone who cares. They believe us because they trust us. Jesus said that people should trust in him with this kind of childlike faith. Thoughts of children and spring remind us of Easter and the resurrection of Christ. Preparation often includes fasting, cross walks, special church activities, and decorating colorful eggs with younger children. Ukranian painted eggs have an interesting history that often reflects the faith and personality of the artist through the use of symbols and color. Some of the  most used symbols and their Christian meaning are described below.

    A ribbon or belt around the egg symbolizes eternity.

     Pine needles represent youth and  health.

    Dots or small circles represent stars or constellations.

    The fish is an ancient symbol for Christ.

    Deer and horses represent wealth and prosperity.

    A sieve or a net suggests fishing.

    Grapes symbolize the “good fruits” of Christian life.

    Ladders suggest prayer.

    Small baskets or triangles symbolize the Holy Trinity.

     A leaf or flower suggests life and growth.

     An eight-pointed star is an ancient symbol for Christ.

    A butterfly is a symbol of the resurrection.

     A cross signifies the suffering and resurrection of Christ.

    Colors also have a variety of representations such as white for purity, yellow for a successful harvest and wisdom, green for rebirth and spring, orange for endurance and ambition, and blue for sky, air, and good health.

    Create special times with children in your life by drawing and painting eggs with symbols that have historical meaning.