Deb's Monthly Review
bullet February 2001 bullet Festivals for Travelers,
Sites of the Month,
Special Feature, Quotes,
Opinions, Rants, Praises.


Find this:

Special Quote
"Liberty is the only thing you
cannot have unless you are
willing to give it to others."
--William Allen White

To parents, teachers, and other guardians of children:
The Review is a place where adults or kids should be able
to stop by and browse.
But, remember - I have no control over outside links.
For happiest results, please surf the Web with your kids!


The Artsy Site
Of The Month:

National Art Gallery of Malaysia
Take a virtual tour or see what's in the special exhibits.

New! Handy Site
Of The Month:

The On-Line Books Page
Books on anger management, the coast of Maine, Bible history, world health issues and many more, about 13,000 books in all.

Web Page Design Site
Of The Month:

eFront: Webmasters
Programming, graphics, link verification help and more.

Seasonal Site
Of The Month:

Groundhog Job Shadow Day Web Site
Mentoring on a large-scale. But you don't have to wait for a whole corporation to move on this. Choose a young person and teach them what you do for a day and why it means they need to pay attention in math class.

Just Fun Site
Of The Month:

Some of you conservative people do not dance. Do you exercise? If you do, good for you. If you do not, this is a lot more heavenly than dying from the types of cardiovascular disease hastened by inactivity.

Downright Serious Site
Of The Month:

Salaries of Teachers
Were we wondering why more young people feel they cannot afford to go into teaching.

Historical Site
Of The Month:

History Channel TV Listings for Black History Month.
Wonderful topics will be presented, including the story of black cowboys (on February 26).


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February Events
festivals For February Travelers

February 2-3, 2001
Winter Wings Weekend
Lake Chicot State Park on Highway 257,
Lake Village, Arkansas.
Field trips and lake tours to view area bald eagles and many kinds of waterfowl.
More information: Call 870-265-5480.

February 3-4, 2001
Upper Skagit Bald Eagle Festival
Firehall on Alfred Street (and other venues),
Rockport, Washington.
Although viewing and photographing eagles is the highlight of this event, many other activities go on during the weekend, including A Taste of the North Cascades (presented by local restaurants), concerts, art displays, pancake breakfast and food concessions. Visitors are encouraged to dress warmly and come equipped with binoculars or use telephoto lenses for cameras.
More information: Call 360-853-7009.

February 3-5, 2001
Palo Community,
Aurora, Minnesota.
Based on Finnish sliding festivals, this event features crafts, sports, a marketplace, ethnic foods, skating and plenty of sliding down the hill.
More information: Call 218-638-2551.

February 3 through March 25, 2001
Arizona Renaissance Festival
Festival Village at Highways 60/89,
(east of) Apache Junction, Arizona.
The 30-acre festival area is open on weekends, and features jousting demonstrations, working artisans, archery and other games, festival foods (there will be wine and beer for those of you who like to be forewarned), and stages of entertainment. There are also many strolling entertainers who wander the grounds during the festival hours, adding to the fun.
Ticket information: Call 520-463-2600.

February 16-18, 2001
California Duck Days
Veterans Center at 203 E. 14th Street,
Davis, California.
In its eighth year, this event will feature over 40 field trips, plus workshops, an expo hall, activities for kids, bird dog demonstrations, art at the Davis Art Center, and more.
More information: Call 800-425-5001 or 530-758-1286.

February 16-25, 2001
Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival
46-350 Arabia Street,
Indio, California.
Adults pay a general admission of about six dollars (seniors and children get in for even less) for a lot of fun at this festival/fair. There are the usual carnival rides and games, plus a parade, agricultural exhibits, ostrick and camel races, the Arabian Nights outdoor musical pageant, a demolition derby, a monster trucks competition and much more.
More information: Call 800-811-FAIR or 760-863-8247.

February 23-25, 2001
Newport Seafood & Wine Festival
Newport Marina Exhibit Hall,
Newport, Oregon.
This is not a good family event because you must be 21 or older to attend, but if you fit into that category and you are a fan of seafood and wine, you might enjoy the festival. There will also be arts and crafts on exhibit. There is an admission charge.
More information: Call 541-265-8801.

February 24-25, 2001
Naples National Art Festival
Cambier Park & 8th Street south,
Naples, Florida.
Approximately 250 arts and crafts workers will display and sell their work at this event, now in its 22nd year. An optional donation of two dollars is requested to assist the Naples Art Association's vonLiebig Art Center. Food and beverages will be available for purchase.
More information: Call 941-262-6517.

February 25-26, 2001
River City Mardi Gras
Downtown area,
Paducah, Kentucky.
There will be a Mardi Gras parade, food, a masquerade ball and activites for children. Proceeds from this event benefit local charities plus Ronald McDonald House.
More information: 888-443-2048.

January 26-28, 2001
Ice Sculpture Festival
Downers Grove, Illinois.
This year's theme is "Castles and Crowns", with carvers competing for three thousand dollars in prizes. There will be performances of Sleeping Beauty, trolley rides, face painting and children's entertainment. Some activities have a fee.
More information: Call 800-934-0615.

January 26-February 4, 2001
St. Paul Winter Carnival
Rice Park (and other venues),
St. Paul, Minnesota.
Grande Parade, snow shoeing and skiing, antique show, teen party, Royal ball, ice carving, cat show, curling events, broomball tournament, cabaret, orchid show, art exhibits, snow sculpture displays, bridge tournament, jigsaw puzzle contest, much more.
More information: Call 651-223-4700 or 800-488-4023.

January 26-March 4, 2001
Mid-Winter Festival of Music
First English Lutheran Church & Mccullough Theatre,
Austin, Texas.
The season opens with the opera "King Arthr". Each weekend there are concerts with early musical instruments, voice and piano works and more. Events are ticketed. You can also earn tickets by volunteering (call 512-371-7753).
Tickets: Call 512-371-0099.

It's always best to call ahead to verify festival information.

Looking for information on travel agents and other travel assistance?
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You can get information on all these plus sign-up for a bi-monthly magazine at Travigator II

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The issue of freedom (including religious freedom) in the United States is something born of past persecution and fear of future tyranny. We were the poster child for the rebellion of the Western world, juvenile delinquents if you will. And juvenile delinquents do not play by the rules of established society. We took our leave of Great Britain with speeches, assemblies, printing presses and even firepower. If you think gangs are a problem today, you should have seen the passion with which those people fought for their freedoms.

But human nature being what it is, new persecution came anyway, and so did new generations, and new battlegrounds, with the North and South divided in other issues of freedom.

We seem to serve an odd purpose in this country. By our very proclamation of "freedom!" we become an arena for both subtle discrimination and for open, hateful bloodshed. The rest of Earth's inhabitants look on and imagine a land flowing with milk and honey where dreams come true and all can be free to either make a fortune or sit on a park bench and have no responsibilities at all.

We often attribute a quote to Patrick Henry that goes something like this: "Give me liberty or give me death". But it is also my understanding that this same Patrick Henry wanted to pass a bill in his home state of Virginia that called for a tax supporting all Christian churches in the state. People could have chosen which church would receive this tax payment.

So was Patrick Henry for religious freedom in America? I believe it was his intention to be, but only based on a definition of the confines of his understanding of what religion was. I doubt he ever met a Muslim or even knew what one was. Buddhists? I cannot say what he thought of them, if he even knew they existed. Patrick Henry was operating from a belief base of what he knew, which was Christianity. Were his intentions good? I believe they probably were, but if this tax bill had been enacted, it might have led to all sorts of denominational conflict and persecution. What would Patrick Henry have done when a citizen chose to pay his tax to the equivalent of today's Church of Satan? Native Americans had no "church" in which to place their tax. Oh, but were they even citizens? Women, who could not vote or own property at that time surely would have had no freedom to send tax money to a church. Indeed, women were basically property themselves, as were slaves. And to whom could an atheist pay his tax?

Patrick Henry used his narrow little frontier to define the idea of religious freedom. If we could wake him from his grave right this moment he would be very surprised at the diversity of religion in America. Would he still want to see that tax bill enacted in Virginia if he knew citizens (including women, Native Americans and blacks) might send their share to something other than a Baptist or Methodist Church? I guess we will never know.

President Bush would like to see more Federal assistance for the work that churches do in the community (such as feeding the hungry and providing shelter for the homeless). He wants to do a good thing. Take a look at a story on what U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black said about laws which aid "all religions", and the subsequent cases which have attempted to lower the wall of separation of church and state.

Who gets to decide what the "good to the community" will be when it comes to giving churches assistance for their good works? It is very difficult to plan for all the contingencies that can arise. What about churches whose beliefs we might not agree with, but which are doing good works in the community? Will they always be guaranteed their fair share of help? If a church gives out religious literature with a bowl of soup, do they lose their funding? If a church decides to give rides home to intoxicated people (so they will not be driving drunk) and on the way home a discussion comes up on reincarnation, does that disqualify the funding of the rides program? Can church members give out blankets with the church logo or doctrine printed on the blankets? Or can they pass out plain blankets but wear t-shirts screenprinted with church doctines? Should a church now keep two sets of books, one for community service and one for "other"? And even at that, will it not take complicated bookkeeping to prove the electricity for the fellowship hall is used for twelve hours a week for soup kitchen use, and then it goes back to church use for the evangelistic series two hours a night on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays? A lot of church treasurers are volunteers, and all this complicated bookkeeping might mean a church will need to hire a full-time bookkeeper or accountant to keep all this straight. Can they use the Federal assistance funds to pay that salary? Or maybe they would be allowed to use the funds to pay only a portion of that salary. (You get the idea.)

Why begin the trek down such a path at all? No matter how one looks at it, this means our tax dollars, which are secular in nature, will now be used to fund activities of religious organizations.

Do we want to keep the wall of separation of church and state as firm and tall as we can, knock it down completely, or shave off a thin layer at a time?

Please let President Bush, your congressional representatives and your senators know how you feel.


A Little Browsing...

We're pleased to host the work of artisan Joan Garnand on our little patch of light on the web. Joan's creations are finally finding their way out of her Tennessee community and into the hearts of admirers everywhere.
Check out Joan's zucchini/squash casserole recipe.
This busy lady also began her TV stint this past spring, and is sharing her cake decorating and candy-making skills on a local Chattanooga station.

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We learned about latitude and longitude in school, but did we connect those coordinates to real places? This site seeks to give more meaning to it all with the Degree Confluence Project..

Potato Salad is part of American picnics and summer parties. We all have our favorite recipe for it (most of the good ones include a pinch of this or a dash of that--I like a bit of sweet pickle relish, but some cooks prefer dill pickles or no pickles at all). If you'd like to try something new, visit Potato Salad Recipes, which includes variations using everything from blueberries to basil.

Here is how to know if a cow has Mad Cow Disease. But seriously, folks, if you have concerns about the increasing dangers in animal foods these days, you might want to consider using seitan products. Back in the good old days I made my own a few times, using regular wheat flours, which meant rinsing and rinsing and rinsing to get rid of the starch. Now you can buy ready-to-use gluten flour mixes which let you mix the seitan and just pop it into a broth. Then you cut or grind it and use it instead of meat (you get chewy texture and substance, but it will not taste like filet mignon. Of course, they have not yet discovered any Mad Seitan Disease, so it does have its advantages!) Harvest Direct is one place where you can read about and learn where to buy seitan mix

Late last summer I attended a Dahlia show in a local mall, and was stunned at the wide variety and beauty of these flowering plants. The Illustrated Guide to Growing and Showing Dahlias from Your Garden will give you a sense of the rich colors and variations in size and style. If you go to their Dahlia photo gallery and then click on the Buyer's Guide you can see photos of blooms.

Can you weld with the best of them? Have you rebuilt your own vacuum cleaner when you got tired of waiting for someone else to do it? Could you find just the right part if they turned you loose in a junkyard? If you have ever engineered your own contraption to do what you needed to get done, you may be wanted for an upcoming episode of Junkyard Wars. You will need two more team mates, but you can sometimes find those through the show's staff. This wacky show began in Great Britain, but is gaining popularity with viewers in the U.S. They have built catapults, watercraft, rocket-launched ostrich eggs, and all sorts of other machines. Your team competes against another 3-person team, and a guest judge is brought in each week to comment and determine who the winners are.

Men and women: did you get "volunteered" to head the bake sale fund raiser this year for your child's school or organization? Get some great tips from Baker Boulanger's Bake Sale Primer.

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Are you wanting to cook faster and with less oils?
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