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Dirty Kale

21 Mar

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis


Breaking news yesterday!  Kale the fabulous super food has been added to a list of shame. Yes, the dirty dozen list of foods with pesticides.

According to a New York Post story,

“It’s kale’s time to move away from the spotlight,” says Food Network host Skyler Bouchard. She says that “anyone who’s into food could tell you that it’s already been on the way down” since its heyday when the green received a shout out on Beyoncé’s sweatshirt in her 2014 music video for “7/11.”

Do people really choose which foods to eat based on a celebrity sweatshirt? I can see being influenced if the sweatshirt sported a picture of  a luscious donut, but for me–never kale!



Our minds are shockingly easy to program. We see or hear something often enough and without realizing, we gravitate toward it. Just this week I found myself being subliminally programmed by my husband. He enjoys painting ocean (sea) scapes and has been working on perfecting his wave spray. Instructional You Tube videos have been white noise in the house for several days and I have viewed several versions of the painting he is working on. I tell him it looks great and he paints over it. Go figure!  Anyway, back on point, on Monday I chose verses from Philippians 2 for the Facebook post I create for our church. After I posted it,  I realized why I chose that particular photo.


I am hoping the husband doesn’t figure out how easily I can be programmed!

Back to the kale. A big shout out to whomever developed the eat more kale marketing plan. it was brilliant. I wonder if the same person is running the  current eat more cauliflower campaign or more likely, they are lolling on a sunny beach somewhere, drinking adult beverages and laughing.







I'm a winnerAfter my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience.  Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites,  Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general  “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books  where we frequently host the best in up and coming authors.

My 2019 goal is to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

2018 Florida Road Trip Part 12

20 Mar

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites


Day 12 Tuesday 10/30/2018


My plan this morning was to drive to outlying areas around St. Augustine to visit several additional points of interest.  As I was driving back into town, I passed a sign on a store-front, that advertised “Big Bill’s Die Cast” and I just had to stop to see what it was all about.  This is an amazing store!  This guy, Bill, really does have a die cast model of just about everything that has ever been made.  Cars, Trucks, Airplanes, Motorcycles, Boats, Tanks, and you name it, Bill has the item in several sizes.  His moto is, “If I don’t have it, they don’t make it”and I believe him.



After that interesting stop, I headed across the “Bridge of Lions” and Matanzas Bay onto Anastasia Island to visit the St. Augustine Lighthouse Museum.  Some historical records tell us that this area has been the location of a coastal warning light (watch towers) as early as 1565.  The current lighthouse was built in 1871 to replace the original 1824 lighthouse (the first official lighthouse in Florida built by the new, territorial, American Government) that collapsed in 1880, as a result of erosion and a changing coastline.



Now it was south on SR-A1A just a few miles to visit the Fort Matanzas National Monument (fort) located on the eastern side of the Matanzas Inlet.  This small fort was built by the Spanish in 1742 to guard the southern mouth of the Matanzas River, which opens up the southern access to St. Augustine. The fort itself is only accessible by ferry across the river from the Park Service Visitor Center.



This fort was built and manned by the Spanish to protect the rear entrance to the city of St. Augustine from attack.  The only way to get to the remains of this small fort is by a short ferry-boat ride.  I asked the Ranger how long it would take, from the time one left the landing, until the ferry-boat brought them back.  He said the ferry made the trip once each hour.  From the pictures I saw of this small fort, I didn’t want to take that much time to see it today.  Maybe another time.



South on A1A another few miles, and across the Matanzas Inlet, I checked out the Dolphin Adventure at Marineland.  This attraction was first opened by a group of dedicated sea mammal enthusiasts headed up by W. Douglas Burden and Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney as the Marine Studios.  This original facility was situated on a 125 acre plot located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Intercostal Waterway (Matanzas River).  As the world’s first Oceanarium, the Marine Studios was designed to rescue, study, and film the underwater life and habits of sea creatures.

On my way south on A1A to visit Marineland, I had noticed several large homes, perched on stilts, located right on the beach.  Now as I headed back north towards St. Augustine, I stopped on the side of the road to get a closer look and take a photo or two.  It looked like the houses were located along the beach road known as Old A1A.  I had no idea people were allowed to build that close to the ocean.  I doubt they would have too many visitors during hurricane season, but of course, they would have an excellent view of any 20 or 30-foot tidal surge or tsunami coming in at them from the ocean.





I had to do a little back-tracking on A1A to get to SR-312, where I turned west to avoid having to go through down town St. Augustine again.  Then I turned north on N. Holmes Blvd. until I came across 4 Mile Road, and north again to where I turned west on SR-16.  All of this (with Greta’s help) got me to the St. Augustine Aquarium. This turned out to be a very interesting family-participation type  attraction, feathering all kinds of salt water  creatures including sharks and rays.  I was there long enough to witness the afternoon shark feeding, but wasn’t interested in the snorkeling or the zip line ride.


So, before heading back to the motel for the night, I started looking for a place to eat supper. And wouldn’t you know it, there was a Cracker Barrel Restaurant just down the road.  I stopped in for a delicious Meat Loaf dinner with garlic mash potatoes and green beans, and one of their fresh baked biscuits with butter and honey for desert.


—–To Be Continued—–



Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 61 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.




One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10



Joy With No Expectations

19 Mar

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis






On the Road Again

18 Mar

My Take

DiVoran Lites



DiVoran’s Vintage Photos


David and DiVoran

After we left Lovelock, we went back to Canon City for a few years until Ivan got the gas plant properly staffed. Jobs were scarce, but he applied for one at the tomato factory in Crowley, Colorado and got it. We drove to Crowley, where Dad was to repair and keep the machinery running. By this time I was five years old and my brother David was two and a half.

The house we lived in was called a shotgun house. It had four rooms. The name came from the idea that a person with a shotgun could shoot a bullet into the opened front end and it would come straight out the back end. Each room was twelve feet square with high ceilings for the sake of ventilation, and we had windows that opened and closed all the way down the sides of the house.

Mother was still cooking on a coal stove, but in Crowley,she had a job cooking a hearty noon meal for the factory workers – mostly men. Now that I know the dimensions of the house, I’m not sure where she actually put them all. Perhaps someone came with a farm truck to pick up the food and take it back to the factory, maybe it was Ivan. Maybe he paused for a good-bye kiss from the lips of his beloved wife as he went out the door.



When she wasn’t cooking, cleaning or hanging out clothes to dry, Dora liked to gather her gang and walk over a narrow berm to the factory. Her little group consisted of David, who got a piggy-back ride, little daughter who walked behind her on the high berm, the dog, the Nanny goat, and after her, Billy, her kid. The rooster, Chanticleer brought up the rear. Along the way,Mother watched in surprise as Billy Goat click-clacked across window panes covering the young plants without breaking a single pane.

When I was a baby I fainted and she took me to the doctor. The Doctor said I wasn’t getting enough nourishment from breast feedings o Mother put me on goat’s milk. In Crowley even when I was five she gave me a dented tin-cup full of warm milk and sat me on the wooden step out front. Later when I met a milkshake it reminded me of the goat’s milk. I still like it better than cow’s milk and I believe it is better for me too. I’m fascinated with the fact that it is naturally homogenized.

Each day of the season, Mother gave me a salt shaker and a red tomato right off the vine. The juice ran down my chin as I thoroughly enjoyed the salted tomato of the day. I’ve never tasted one as good since. After I finished she washed my face and put me in clean pajamas.



Every year, Dora made new pajamas for both children on the Singer electric sewing machine she inherited from her grandmother. Later, I made clothing for my children on it. It’s there in my living now and I never knew before how heavy it is to lift out of itscradle.

Mother was a great storyteller and once she had us cleaned up and in our new jammies she sat on the bed and told us made-up stories until we went to sleep. I’m so grateful that she was a story-teller and that she kept a record of her life on scraps of paper which I inherited from her.

I went to kindergarten at Crowley School. There, for the first time, I met a girl with skin darker than mine. She may have been Native American or Mexican, and she might be considered my first best friend, yet she never came to my house and I never went to hers.

Our sojourn in Crowley ended during World War II when Ivan was called up and assigned to the infantry. In his letters home, he tells about his rise to sharp-shooter and how happy that made him. I guess he got lots more practice in the Battle of the Bulge.

Our last supper in the shotgun house was chicken and noodles. That was usually my favorite supper, but when I found out we were eating Chanticleer the rooster, I gave up on chicken for a longtime. I don’t know what happened to the dog and the goats, but Daddy probably had to sell them or give them away. Grandmother’s apartment house and corner lot had room for family, but not for the family’s menagerie.


Author, Poet and Artist

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”


A Bean is a Bean is a Bean

17 Mar


Judy Wills



Funny how things – memories – pop into my mind. Something in this day and time will trigger a memory from years ago.

That happened just recently.

Right after Fred and I married, we moved to Fort Worth, Texas, for Fred to attend the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, intending for him to make his life vocation in Baptist work.


The Rotunda, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas


A friend of my family’s was a professor at the Seminary at the time.  On a visit to Albuquerque some time before, he had convinced Fred that Southwestern was the best Seminary for him to attend (Fred had thought to go to Golden Gate Seminary in California).


1966 – some of the Golden Gate Baptist Seminary campus, Mill Valley, California


Therefore, we contacted him and his wife shortly after we arrived in Fort Worth, and they took us on a tour of the city.

He was a product of New Mexico and she was a lovely Georgia Peach.  I don’t remember how they met, but they were a delightful couple.  I must tell you that he had been nearly doubled over with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis in his youth, and walked with two canes. My Mother had been his Sunday School teacher and had seen him with the canes.  He had been a guinea pig for Cortizone treatment, and was walking upright by the time he met his wife.  His wife had never seen him doubled over.

That isn’t necessary information for this story, but I think it is interesting.

In any case, he told us a story about one day when he asked his wife if she would cook a pot of beans and cornbread for supper that evening and she agreed, saying that sounded so good to her.  He said he called her throughout the day, and each time she would tell him how wonderful the entire house smelled with the cooking beans.  His mouth was watering, anticipating those pinto beans he had grown up eating.


So imagine his surprise when he walked through the door to the house, and didn’t smell anything like he remembered.  Well, East meets West in this story.  He pictured pinto beans and cornbread


Credit Google Search and Cracker Barrel


and her Southern background pictured a pot of green beans with ham hocks!  And that’s what she had cooked!


Credit Google Search and Cracker Barrel


He ate the green beans, but was sorely disappointed that he didn’t get those pinto beans he had been looking forward to all day! I don’t remember whether or not she ever learned to make a pot of pinto beans.

I just always get a chuckle out of that story, whenever I think of it.

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Seeking Peace-Give to Others What I Seek

15 Mar

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis


Regardless of the religion or philosophy, one premise seems to be consistent: You receive what you give. As an opinionated person, I find it hard to only speak words of peace. I’m not fond of the “every thing is beautiful and perfect” people, because that simply is not real. Life is raw.

I do tend to be one of those people who comes up with explanations for why someone acted poorly or unwisely, to see from their perspective and I have found that can be annoying to others. So what is a person, me, supposed to do?

Examine my heart.  As I seek peace does my life reflect it?

 Proverbs 27: 19

As water reflects the face,
so one’s life reflects the heart




Love: Love in both thoughts and actions is a path to peace.

Joy: Don’t become weary, but remain in joy.

Peace: Peace comes by not giving up on giving.


Not a Fan

14 Mar

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis


Well, I’ve given it 4 days and have come to the definitive conclusion, I DON’T like Daylight Savings Time.  In fact, as far as I am concerned, the science is settled. My friend DiVoran emailed me this cartoon. I loved it.


I need dusk and nightfall to alert me that the day is ending. Encroaching shadows nudge me to begin preparing supper and full nightfall signals the end of my day. Fans of DST claim that it gives them more daylight to mow the grass, do other chores or have fun outdoors. That’s great, but once night arrives, you are beat and bedtime looms without the benefit of chill out time.

Since the country does not revolve around me, I guess I will concede to DST with as much grace as I can muster, and enjoy the bright side. Morning daylight won’t disturb my last chance of sweet dreams before the alarm starts my day.



I'm a winnerAfter my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience.  Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites,  Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general  “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books  where we frequently host the best in up and coming authors.

My 2019 goal is to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

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