Write to a D-Day Veteran

Reblog from Janine Strange https://www.janinestange.com/dday


June 6th marks the 75th Anniversary of D-Day.  Of the 16 million US WWII Veterans, fewer than 400,000 remain today. The average age of our remaining ‘D-Day Survivor’ veterans is 96!

On June 4th through June 9th, the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA will be hosting “The Final Salute: D-Day Plus 75 Years” which will combine the best of the Memorial with the best of the D-Day story: a gathering of veterans and the general public at the nation’s memorial to the invasion of Normandy for reflection and remembrance – the story of ordinary people in extraordinary moments.

Below is a list of D-Day Veterans who are able to attend the National D-Day Memorial’s Final Salute.

Write them (one, two, three … or all) a letter of gratitude. Your letters will be presented to each D-Day Survivor in attendance in the hospitality tent.

In addition to expressing your gratitude, tell them about yourself – and the things you’ve done with the freedoms they fought and sacrificed to ensure we have today.  This is an awesome group/school/family project. Unfortunately, we will not have these national treasures with us much longer. Don’t let them leave this earth without taking a moment to personally thank them for their selfless service.

Send your mail directly to:

The National D-Day Memorial

attn: Veteran’s Name

(or if a generic letter: Attn: D-Day Veteran)

PO BOX 1171

Bedford, VA 24523

Mail needs to arrive on or before June 3rd. 


The Writer’s Cottage

writer with typewriterPsychologically, I made two major breakthroughs as a writer this week while we were in Virginia Beach.  We were looking at possible retirement homes.

“What do you two do besides volunteering?” our tour guide asked us.

“I write a blog, ” I responded.

“What’s it about?” she enquired.

“I write about a variety of topics that interest me.  I have about 350 followers.”

It was the first time I had mentioned my blog to a stranger.  It felt good to acknowledge I was a writer.

Later that afternoon, as we drove through  some neighborhoods,  anytime we saw a house with a detached building like a storage hut or an adult-sized playhouse, my husband would say “That can be your writing cottage.  All you’ll need is electricty.”

“And heat and airconditiooning ” I joked.  It was the first time he has expressed an interest in my writing besides doing an excellent job of taking pictures of unusual bathroom doors for my Bathroom Signs irregular series of blog posts.

Plunk by plunk, letter by letter , word by word, I’m typing my way into  being a writer.


5 Unconventional Ways to Promote Your Blog

This is a different take on the usual blog advice. Very helpful and insightful.

The Art of Blogging

If you are trying to reach more readers, chances are you’re already familiar with search engine optimization (SEO) and building a presence on different social media networks.

There is nothing wrong with those methods, and you should probably give them a try, but if you have already exhausted all the common methods of promoting your blog, then here are 5 unconventional methods that will get you more readers.

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baleenIf you do not have teeth and you need to eat tons of food each day, how do you get your food?  If you are a whale, you may use baleen to filter the small plankton, shrimp and fish that flow into your mouth, along with the sea water.  The sea water flows out through the gaps in your baleen while the food gets trapped within the baleen.  One flick of your enormous tongue gathers up the trapped food and transfers it into your throat.

Although I knew about baleen from volunteering at the

Tide pool table
Note the California Grey Whale in the bin on the left hand side.  Grey Whales are also baleen  whales.

Tidepool Information Table at Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego, I learned even more during a recent dolphin watch adventure at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center in Virginia Beach.  Between April and September, the Atlantic Explorer takes guests out of Owl Creek, through Rudy Inlet into the Atlantic Ocean for a 90 minute trip to see juvenile Humpback Whales, Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins, perhaps some sea turtles and maybe some rays.


DSG_9828 Lady in krill costume in blue whale jaw

I knew that baleen was made from keraton, the same material that makes up your fingernails and hair.  (It look sort of like the bristles in a push broom.)  What I did not know was how the whale got the left-behind seafood from  its baleen into its gullet.  I also did not know that the Humpback Whale  (49-52 foot female  or the 43-46 foot male) had a throat the size of a grapefruit.

From Wikiepedia

Depending on the species, a baleen plate can be 0.5 to 3.5 m (1.6 to 11.5 ft) long, and weigh up to 90 kg (200 lb). Its hairy fringes are called baleen hair or whalebone-hair. They are also called baleen bristles, which in sei whales are highly calcified, with calcification functioning to increase their stiffness.[1][2] Baleen plates are broader at the gumline (base). The plates have been compared to sieves or Venetian blinds

humpback whale

May Days to Celebrate

Screenshot_2019-04-22 Asian Pacific American Heritage MonthMay is Asian/Pacific-American Heritage month.   From the Asian Pacific Heritage Month about

May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month – a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. A rather broad term, Asian/Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island).

Like most commemorative months, Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month originated with Congress

Choose Privacy Week is May 1-7. Why privacy? “Because the freedom to read and receive ideas anonymously is at the heart of individual liberty in a democracy.  Librarians defend that freedom every day.” from the ALA Choose Privacy Every Day

chose privacy week

May 1 is Mother Goose Day. Mother Goose Day was founded in 1987 by Gloria T. Delamarmother goose in tandem with the publication of her book, Mother Goose; From Nursery to Literature.
To learn more tips on how to enjoy Mother Goose Day, click here.

How did you do with this Mother Goose quiz?  I got 9 out of 10 correct.

May 4 is Star Wars Day.  It stems from the “May the Force be with you” so “May the Forth be with you.” Celebrate a galaxy far, far away.

National Pet Week is May 5-11.  National Pet Month is a celebration of the benefits that pets bring to people’s lives – and vice versa. It is observed annually in the United States in May and during the month of April in the United Kingdom.

From the American Veteranarium Medical Association Website.

A survey conducted by the AVMA every five years reveals that the top 10 pet-owning states are: Wyoming where 72 percent of households owned a pet; West Virginia with 71 percent; Nebraska, Vermont, and Idaho with 70 percent; Indiana and Arkansas with 69 percent; and Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Colorado with 65 percent.

The 10 states with the lowest percentage of pet-owning households are: Rhode Island where only 45 percent of households owned a pet; South Dakota with 46 percent; New Jersey with 47 percent; Maryland, Illinois, and Massachusetts with 49 percent; New York and Connecticut with 50 percent; Georgia with 51 percent; and New Hampshire with 52 percent.

What Do I want in 2020?


What do I want in 2020?

Take a seat, ’cause I want plenty.

More inclusiveness all around

Less bite when making sound.

More humility and less conceit,

A bit of truth would be quite sweet.

Even making more frenemies

Is better than making more enemies.

Kinder, gentler, more points of light

Instead of perceiving every slight,

Especially when it’s  unintended.

Retaliation can’t be rescinded.