Photo by Pixabay

Faster Google Searches

Searching on Google has become second nature for all of us but there’s still a lot we can learn about how to search faster and more effectively.

Here are some of the key tips from an expert:

  • Think an extra second about what it is you are really asking for

Here is a search example “What is the distance to the sun?”

It seems simple. But where are you measuring from? 

  • Don’t include your answer in a search

People sometimes include the expected answer into their search. It’s better to ask, “What is the average length of an octopus” rather than “Is the average length of an octopus 21 inches?” 

  • Use ‘context’ search terms

Numerous “context” terms will help you better pinpoint a search, including words such as lesson, background, summary, tutorial, define and history.

  • Search by voice for a spelling

Use your voice if you are unsure of the spelling of a word, pneumonia, for example. Using voice or text, you can also determine how a word is pronounced.

From: Senior Google research scientist Daniel M. Russell’s “The Joy of Search: A Google Insider’s Guide Going Beyond The Basics” and USA TODAY



Crooked Creek by Sue Mattingly

Carol of the Brown King by Langston Hughes

Of the three Wise Men 

Who came to the King,

One was a brown man, 

So they sing.

Of the three Wise Men

Who followed the Star,

One was a brown king

From afar.

They brought fine gifts

Of spices and gold

In jewel boxes

Of beauty untold.

Unto His humble

Manager they came 

And bowed their heads

In Jesus’ name.

Three Wise Men,

One dark like me —–

Part of His 


langston-hughes-1 Langston Hughes              Photo by Bing

Theme graphic by Pixabay

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Forgotten Cookies

I’ve been making these cookies since the 1980s and they are still a family favorite. The recipe was given to me by a sweet elderly neighbor, Helen Peters. I think of her each time that I make them which includes today. They are easy. Give this recipe a try!

Forgotten Cookies

2 egg whites at room temperature
3/4 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 cup of chopped pecans
1 cup of semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven at 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.

Beat egg whites until foamy. Slowly add sugar and continue beating until mixture is stiff. Mix in vanilla. Fold in nuts and chips. Drop by teaspoon onto prepared cookie sheet. Place in oven and immediately TURN OVEN OFF. Leave overnight. Makes approximately 2 dozen cookies.

At My Feet – A Poem by Sylvia

at my feet

in a postage stamp yard
behind a small bungalow
i have the world at my feet
“my world”…
of speckled starlings and common house sparrows…
Carolina wrens and cardinals…
chipmunks who scurry about
beneath the fern fronds and boxwood…
and families of gray squirrels
who travel the branching highways
of the mighty oaks…

this is my world
among my animal friends
who come to me
like I’m Snow White…
and I to them
like they’re nature’s counselors…

and they are…
gathering at their feeders
and eating peanuts
at my feet

Sylvia L. Mattingly
September 8, 2019

Photos by Pixabay

Save the Bees

The Good News

Bees have been declared the most important living being on the planet by the Earthwatch Institute. Seventy percent of the world’s agriculture depends exclusively on bees for pollination which enables plants to reproduce. A study conducted in Chili with the support of the Foundation for Agrarian Innovation (FIA), concluded bees are the only living being that does not carry any type of pathogen, viral, fungal or bacterial.

The Bad

Alarmingly almost 90% of the world’s bee population has disappeared in the past few years, putting bees on the endangered species list. The main reasons for the loss of these tiny helpers are the uncontrolled use of pesticides, a lack of flowers, and deforestation.

According to Greenpeace, we can restore and protect the world’s bees using ‘common sense actions’ such as banning the most dangerous pesticides, protecting pollinator health by preserving wild habitat and restoring ecological agriculture.

You can help save the BEES!

Bees on Blossoms in GermanyBiene auf einer Bluete
Greenpeace Photo

Read more about dangerous pesticides and the EPA’s lack of action at

Benefits of Owning a Dog

Why Own a Dog

The most obvious reason is that they are wonderful pets who bring immense joy to one’s life. 

As pointed out in an earlier post owning a dog may help you to live longer. This is strongly indicated in a recent study published in the peer-reviewed journal “Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes” of the American Heart Association.

The study was a meta-analysis of research published from 1950 to May of this year. This research evaluated dog ownership and its association to mortality. The data was from more than 3 million participants.

Scientists found dog owners had a 24% risk reduction for death from any cause, according to the study. For people with heart problems, living with a dog had an even greater benefit, the authors said. 

Walking a dog daily for twenty or thirty minutes is one of the obvious benefits and stress reduction and social interaction may also play a role. The scientists emphasized that dog ownership would not make up for cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and smoking.

While there are reasons why it is not practical for some individuals to own a dog, longevity might be enhanced by noting the importance of daily walking or other exercises. The American Heart Association recommends weekly activity of 150 minutes of moderate exercise to improve overall cardiovascular health.

Title Art of Luke by Pat Brooks