Friday, February 28, 2014

An Amazing Meditation, Reiki and Session of Messages from Spirits

On February 18, some members of Inspired Ghost Tracking and a few others gathered at the home of Reiki master Nancy Turner for meditation and Reiki. Nancy is an amazing, talented sensitive who enabled me and others to get in touch with their spirit guides and taught us how to best meditate.
   My friend and protege (I like to think of him that way) Kyle is an amazing developing medium, who has healing powers, and has even learned astral projection (something I couldn't even begin to do). Mary identified him as a former Shaman and he understood (as did I). He came on his first ghost investigation with me and my partner, and we confirmed each other all the way through the house with various ghosts who linger there. Kyle came to meditation on the 18th, and found it extremely beneficial, too.
  Mary Peck, another Reiki master who understands crystals and stones, was also present. She is extremely knowledgeable in the healing properties of all of them.
Cindy, Laurie, Rob (me), Kyle (back), Mary, Amy doing Reiki on me
REIKI SESSION - At the end of the session, Nancy asked if there were anything else to address and I mentioned strong muscle tension in my neck and shoulder. I've had it for 2 months and only acupuncture had helped lessen the tension.  Immediately Mary and Nancy went to work with Reiki (transferring energy) and healing my neck and shoulder. The tension actually melted away.
During the session Nancy got great messages from my mom (who passed on Dec. 29). Nancy said that my mom was in the room, and said that I liked to take people under my wing and help them along. Of course, Kyle is one of those people. It was really special to get messages from my mom (I sensed she was sitting on a chair next to me, and she told me "So, this is what it's like to go to one of these meditations.").
  While I was meditating I also got some messages. One of them was very strong and turned out to be a relative of one of the people there. The spirit that came through gave me "Marj or Marg." She also said that there's a Jeff or Jeffrey that's either on the other side or still living that is connected (it's the spirit's son as it turns out). The spirit then showed me an arched church window and said that she was somewhat religious. Then she said, "When I died, there was no Jesus or saints around to greet me, dammit. Only my relatives were there!"  That clinched it for the person in the room! She said that was her personality.
  I also kept seeing the face of  a horse, and a Native American - with a red feather. Nancy said that's her Native American spirit that visits a lot.
  Over all, it was an interesting night, filled with meditations, finding our peaceful places in our minds, geting messages and Reiki healing. These are things that you can do yourself, too. Just find time to meditate, light candles, play soft, relaxing music (Pandora has a relaxation channel) and meditate!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hear it Here! Rob's 1 hour radio interview on the Malliard Report

If you missed Rob's 1 hour radio interview on the Malliard Report Tuesday night, you can catch it here! It was a great interview- about. 60 minutes.

House Project: Our New Trellis!

We had a trellis over the outside door of the den, and the weather was unkind to it, so Tom hired an amazing guy who built us a new one out of oak. He painted and installed it, too, despite the harsh winter-time temperatures. We think it looks great.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Tom: Why I Like Philippa Gregory's Books

Tom wrote today's Blog: 

My favorite genre of books is historical fiction, and I’m a huge fan of Philippa Gregory.  I’m currently reading an older work of hers – The Constant Princess. What I like about Gregory's storytelling is that she fills in the gaps with reasonably plausible concepts where the historical record is silent. 
Here’s an example.  When Henry Tudor won the crown to rule England at the Battle of Bosworth Field, there still survived other more legitimate claimants to the throne – one of them being Edward Plantagenet, Earl of Warwick.  

Historical accounts seem to indicate that Warwick was a bit “slow” or touched in the head, and thus no real threat.  However, Henry Tudor made a deal with King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain (yes, the same ones that funded Columbus’ expeditions to the Americas), whereby their youngest daughter, Katherine, was promised to marry his eldest son, Arthur – Prince of Wales.  But Ferdinand and Isabella would not send their daughter to England until all "threats" to the English throne were removed.  

So Henry Tudor had Warwick arrested and thrown in the Tower.  At that time, the Tower was both a palace and a prison.  Of course, Warwick thought this was grand.  He was the last surviving male in the Plantagenet line, and thought that he was getting the royal treatment he was due.  However, Warwick was put in a cell next to Perkin Warbeck and the two of them concocted a plan to escape which was overheard by a prison guard.  Warwick thought it was all a game, but attempting to escape from the Tower in those days was considered a treasonable offense.  So both Warwick and Warbeck were tried and executed in November 1499.  

With Warwick removed, Katherine was sent to England to marry Arthur.  Gregory’s novel proposes that Katherine was plagued by guilt the rest of her life over Warwick’s unnecessary death.  

Arthur dies within a year of their marriage, and Katherine marries Henry VIII, Arthur’s younger brother.  Henry and Katherine have six children, only one survived to adulthood.  Was it karma? What do you think?  

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Another Dog Rescue: Bringing JJ Home

We got a call from Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue last Friday that a mini-dachshund was being transported north from his foster mom, Melinda in Georgia, up to Virginia where he was going to have to wait awhile until a home visit could be done for his potential adopting family north of Baltimore.  - Well, Tom and I wanted to make that happen more quickly, so we volunteered to make it happen.
Tom and JJ
JJ loves hiding under blankets
  Although I was in Boston Saturday and Sunday helping to clear out my mom's house, I text messaged, called and emailed with different coordinators to set up the hand-off with Tom on Sunday, February 23 during the afternoon.  Tom met Katie from Virginia and picked up little JJ. 
  Tom then raced to the airport later that day to pick me (Rob) up, with JJ and our three dogs in the pick-up truck. JJ sat in my lap in the passenger side of the truck, all the way home.
Tyler (right) crawled into bed with JJ
   Little "JJ" is about 8 pounds, tiny, about 4 1/2 years old, brown in color, and has flipped over ears that look a little more like "wings." He also has no teeth. They were all removed because they were apparently infected. JJ is also house trained, loves to hide under blankets and be held. We learned all that in 18 hours that we had him.
Rob and JJ
JJ looking for a soft treat (he has no teeth!)
   The next task was getting the Home Visit done in north Baltimore, and not making the adopting family wait any longer. So, after getting the paperwork emailed to me (and Tom organized it for me) I was able to get 3 hours off of work Monday afternoon and drive up (it took 2 hours to get there in traffic) and meet Mikey, her two children and her 2 cats (her hubby was still at work). I introduced them to JJ, and they, like us, immediately fell in love with the little guy.
JJ with his new family!
   I did the home inspection, filled out the adoption paperwork, and took care of other business. I left with a lump in my throat and a tear in my eye because I got so attached in a short time-  but I know JJ is in a perfect home!!
   This coordination took a number of people: Tom (transporting), foster mom Melinda, Katie (transport/paperwork), Shelley (took in application), Donna (coordinated paperwork) and me- all for little JJ, and it was so worth it. 
   FIRST NIGHT UPDATE!  - What a wonderful treat to receive an email from Mikey and her family first thing the next morning (today) that said: JJ had a great first night. Slept right next to our daughter all night and our son slept in her room as well. He seems very at home. Thanks for bringing him to us. Hopefully the cats will love him soon ;)

Monday, February 24, 2014

2 Great Books!: "Dead Things" and DC Archive: Robin the Boy Wonder

 I just read two great books that are worth looking into.
The first is a novel about a guy that talks to the dead (what a coincidence!), the other is a vintage collection of 1940s stories of Robin the Boy Wonder.  - Rob

"DEAD THINGS" (paperback) by Stephen Blackmoore
ROB'S REVIEW:   As a paranormal investigator I picked up this book just based on the book jacket description. What a find! This was a well-written, fast-moving, gritty novel that I couldn't put down. The main character Eric Carter is almost like a social misift and his abilities to communicate with the dead take the reader through a paranormal romp from the first to last chapter. I'm anxious to read the next installment in this series. I loved the character, and the supporting characters really enhanced the story. I highly recommend this book. 

BOOK SUMMARY: Necromancer is such an 
ugly word, but it's a title Eric Carter is stuck with. He sees ghosts, talks to the dead. He's turned it into a lucrative career putting troublesome spirits to rest, sometimes taking on even more dangerous things. For a fee, of course. When he left LA fifteen years ago, he thought he'd never go back. Too many bad memories. Too many people trying to kill him.
But now his sister's been brutally murdered and Carter wants to find out why. Was it the gangster looking to settle a score? The ghost of a mage he killed the night he left town? Maybe it's the patrion saint of violent death herself, Santa Muerte, who's taken an unusually keen interest in him. Carter's going to find out who did it, and he's going to make them pay.  As long as they don't kill him firs

2)  THE ROBIN ARCHIVES: Volume 1  by DC Comics, Archive Edition
ROB'S REVIEW: I've always loved the Robin character, especially Dick Grayson's positive attitude. Similarly, I loved Chuck Dixon's run on the Robin series from the 1990s through the 2000s. This archive is a great collection of the original Robin's first solo adventures. There are some creative villains, too. A really enjoyable collection, and I'm looking forward to volume 2!

BOOK SUMMARY: Don't miss the first archive edition focusing on the early adventures of Robin, collecting stories from Star-Spangled Comics numbered 65-85 (1947-1948)! Presented here are 21 exciting Golden Age solo adventures of The Boy Wonder featuring the talents of Bob Kane, Bill Finger, Curt Swan, Dick Sprang, Jim Mooney, Win Mortimer and more of comics' finest writers and artists!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

In the news: Snowfall running ahead of normal by 2 feet across Northeast, 10 inches in Baltimore

Reporter Scott Dance of the Baltimore Sun is a great weather reporter and provided a snapshot of the snowfall in the Mid-Atlantic through Monday, February 17. *NOTE: we did get a little more snow on the 18th after the article came out)*  Anyway, his article will provide you with a good idea of how much OVER AVERAGE our snowfall totals are for the year.

 Snowfall running ahead of normal by 2 feet across Northeast, 10 inches in Baltimore 
By Scott Dance, Baltimore Sun

According to the National Weather Service, perennially snowy Erie, Pa., is 34 inches ahead of where it would normally be with snowfall this time of the year, with nearly 111 inches.
Cities that are at least 2 feet above normal include: Worcester, Mass.; Youngstown, Ohio; Portland, Maine; Allentown, Pa.; Newark, N.J.; New York; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; Columbus; and Wilmington, Del.
NOAA GOES-East satellite shows snow storm of Tues. 2/18/14 Credit: NOAA/NASA
Philadelphia is nearly 40 inches ahead of normal, with 55.4 inches as of Sunday, compared with a norm of 15.7 inches by that date. Allentown, PA is more than 43 inches ahead of normal, with more than 65 inches so far.
In Baltimore, 24.8 inches of snow had been measured at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport as of Sunday, according to the weather service. That is a few inches more than the average for an entire season, and 9.6 inches ahead of what would be expected by this time of year.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

You Tube Classic: Japan Raptor Chase in Office!

I came across this video and had to post it. It's an hilarious Japanese Raptor Chase!
   It's a prank from a TV show in Japan that had a fake dinosaur running through an office building, chasing a man dressed as a woman. Published on Aug 28, 2013  (The video can't be embedded, so click here)

Friday, February 21, 2014

New Animated Superhero Movie Trailer: Justice League: War -

Here's a trailer for a new Animated Superhero Movie Trailer: Justice League:War. - It's a
Justice League Battles Darkseid in the new animated movie
movie that I (Rob) want to get because it brings to life the first several issues of the Comic book series "Justice League." 
The Justice League has always been my favorite group of superheroes: Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, Flash and Wonder Woman to name a few.
The Washington Post says:  If you're looking for an animated adventure based on the first volume of DC Comics’ New 52 version of the Justice League — by DC talent/execs Geoff Johns and Jim Lee — then: The Blu-Ray has landed. “Justice League: War,” the latest direct-to-video release from DC Comics/Warner Bros. Animation, is a faithful adaptation (except for one major detail) of its comic-book source material.
TO SEE VIDEO (below or link): Link to video 

FULL Washington Post Article:

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Video: Winter Olympics Meet Star Wars!

Attack on Hoth (Star Wars). Cr: Lucas Films
Olympic Skier meets Hoth attackers?
 A TV show in Denmark called Natholdet might have come up with the science-fiction version of the Olympic skiing biathlon. Remember the battle scenes from the ice planet of Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back with the Imperial Walkers clomping through the snow? Here they are mixed with Olympic skiing in  "Winter Olympics Meet Star Wars."
WATCH THE 1 MINUTE VIDEO: Winter Olympics Meet Star Wars


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

House Project! Painting the Den

The original color about to be replaced
Tom picked out a new color for the den and it was transformed to a nice Sage color. Of course, I'm (Rob) color-blind and don't really know what it is, but I like it. I think it warms the room.
  Tom hired an amazing guy named Francisco, who came in with one co-worker and they had 2 coats done in a day that included spackling and smoothing walls, doing trim, etc. What an amazing job! What do you think?

LATER BLOG: Painting the Upstairs
The new "Sage" color!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Home Video: Tyler the doggy football star

Our black and tan 14 lb. Dachshund loves his Nerf doggy football. He received it for Christmas from his uncle Doug, aunt Sue, and cousins Brian and Scotty. This is truly his favorite toy, and it's virtually indestructible (since it's still together in the second month). Enjoy the 36 second video.


Short Funny Video Highlights: Sochi 2014 Opening Ceremony

Didn't have time to watch the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony? 
This short, somewhat funny, PG-13 video will give it all to you in 1 minute and 31 seconds.
 It came from "Cribble" who puts together funny, brief video summaries of events, movies, etc.
Here's the link if you can't see the video below:

Follow   on these unimportant social networks for more meaningless dribble.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Dog Tip: Does Your Dog Eat Too Fast?

Tyler and Franklin's bowls
If your dog eats like a starving wolf at every meal, there's a way to get them to slow down other than lifting up their dish, taking it away or pulling your dog back. We learned about putting a tennis ball or some other object in the middle of their dish, so they have to knock it to one side of the bowl to get food. So, get a ball, relative to the size of your dog's dish.
Tyler likes to wolf down his food
 - Because we bought bone-shaped dog bowls for our little Tyler the terror, we found a rubber bone that fit perfectly in the middle of it, and it really helps. Another thing you can do is add baby carrots to their food to get them to stop and chomp on the carrot. Try it!

In the News; When are all the states going to get it?

On February 13, 2014, a Federal judge ruled that Virginia's marriage ban was unconstitutional. In Kentucky the courts ruled that all same-sex marriages from out of state must be recognized in the state (just like straight marriages! Imagine that!).  - This is all great news for equal rights. However, gay couples in both states can't marry there until it goes BACK to the Supreme Court. Dammit. 
 - If the Supreme Court did the right thing the first time, states wouldn't have to be sued to come the the simple conclusion that Equal means Equal. SIGH. 
   When are all of these conservative states going to understand that Equal means "Equal"?? All of this mess could be avoided. 
    Conservatives in Wisconsin took their intolerance a step FURTHER. They were voting on a law to imprison and fine up to $10,000 any gay couple residing in the state, who married in another state. 
STORY: Bloomberg News: WI criminal-gay-marriage-ban story 
Again, I ask - What is wrong with these conservatives?  Sigh.   - Rob

STORY: VA same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional
Feb. 14, 2014  NORFOLK, Va. (AP) -- In a federal court ruling echoing decisions reached elsewhere in the U.S., Virginia on Thursday became the first state in the South to overturn a voter-approved prohibition of same-sex marriage.
U.S. District Judge Arenda Wright Allen issued a stay of her order while it is appealed, meaning that gay couples in Virginia still will not be able to marry until the case is ultimately resolved. Both sides believe the case won't be settled until the Supreme Court decides to hear it or one like it.
Allen's decision makes Virginia the second state in the South to issue a ruling recognizing the legality of gay marriages.
A judge in Kentucky ruled Wednesday that the state must recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. But that judge did not rule on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages inside the state. Decisions similar to that of the Virginia judge have been issued in in Utah and Oklahoma federal courts.
The office of newly elected Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring took the unusual step of not defending the law because it believes the ban violates the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment. In her ruling, Wright Allen agreed.
"The court is compelled to conclude that Virginia's Marriage Laws unconstitutionally deny Virginia's gay and lesbian citizens the fundamental freedom to choose to marry. Government interests in perpetuating traditions, shielding state matters from federal interference, and favoring one model of parenting over others must yield to this country's cherished protections that ensure the exercise of the private choices of the individual citizen regarding love and family," Wright Allen wrote.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Received Great Customer Service from Ziploc Bags

  I love sharing stories of great customer service, and we just had such an experience.
We purchased a box 4 of Space Savers bags, and one of the large bags had a tear in the bag at the bottom and is unusable.
   I contacted Ziploc via their website and provided the store info, the UPC code, the date and time and location purchase and the description of the product that was damaged.  Within one day they responded with this great letter and will replace the damaged storage bag. THIS is Great customer service!
  The EMAIL RESPONSE:  As only the best is expected from Ziploc® Space Bags®, I'm so glad you brought this to our attention. Your faith in Ziploc® means a lot to us and we want you to receive full value from each of our products. Therefore, a new Large Dual Use bag is on its way to the address you provided. Please expect this to arrive within the next 7-14 business days.
 And since the detailed information you provided as well as the codes you included are very helpful to our Quality Assurance folks, it is not necessary to save the bag or sent it to us.
 Thanks again for writing. 

Bravo, Ziploc!  You have confirmed loyal customers and by sharing this great story, we hope you get a lot more. BTW- the Vacuum storage bags are GREAT. 

Gift/Memorial Suggestions

Several of our friends have lost loved ones (human and pets) and we found that one of the best ways to honor their memory is to give to an animal charity.
What better way to recognize a life of love, than by giving another life a chance for love?
We donate to many animal rescues, but because we volunteer with
DC Weimaraner Rescue and Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, those are our 2 favorites.
Consider giving the chance of life to a dog or cat.

About us

We're two married guys who enjoy the simple things in life, especially our dogs. We volunteer for dog rescues, enjoy splitting dinners, exercising, blogging, helping friends and neighbors, ghost investigations, coffee and tea, Tudor history, weather, superheroes, comic books, mystery novels, traveling, 70s and 80s music, classic country, piano, gardening, writing books on ghosts and spirits, architecture, keeping a clean house, cooking simply, and keeping in shape. You'll find tidbits of all of these things on this blog and more.

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!
Wondering what home project to do next