Boy, can I use some “Relax“ation today and this weekend!  Tea, reading, watching the Blackhawks play hockey, having a smooth dark beer…all these are relaxing.  Another surefire way for me to relax is to just get out into nature by myself.  It will smooth my ruffled feathers every time.

© janet m. webb 2015

I decided to go with an arches theme this week, but not the golden arches of McDo (long o sound) as it’s sometimes called in Europe.  These doors are from Colmar, the city I’ve featured before, that has vacillated between being part of French and part of Germany, but while always keeping not only a colorful past but colorful buildings and doors.  I also had a bit of fun playing with editing on the framing.  Welcome to December!  For more of this week’s Thursday Doors entries, click here.

© janet m. webb 2016

© janet m. webb 2016

© janet m. webb 2016

 

 

© janet m. webb 2016

Image  —  Posted: November 30, 2016 in Wordless Wednesday
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A week ago, I mentioned how difficult it is to find products made in the US and not in China.   I said I was going to challenge you to help people shop for the holidays from, if not locally, at least from the US or from whatever country my readers live in.  You should have been on the hunt.  Now it’s time to see what you’ve found.  Here are some products I know are made in the US.

WeatherTech, located not far from us in Bolingbrook, Illinois, makes all sort of products for cars, from floor mats to license plate holders to pet barriers to keep your pets safely in the second or third row.  Look into them for the man or pet owner in your life or just to keep your vehicle clean!

Many/most of Nordic Ware’s products are made in the US and they also use US ingredients whenever possible.

Buy Titleist golf balls for the golfer in your life.  They’re made in New Bedford, Massachusetts.  Not sure about their other products, though.

Consumer Reports had a useful article in 2013 about which products are actually made in America, a list including major brands and such stalwarts as Crayola crayons, Little Tykes toys (here’s a list of which toys are US made), Stetson hats (for over 150 years!),and other major brands just right for gift-giving.  AmericansWorking.com has listings for all sorts of products made in the US as does USA Love List.

Of course, you can always shop close to home, from people who make their own products, whether food, clothes, crafts, etc.   Buy local cheese, wine, craft beers, maple syrup, honey and candles made from bee’s wax, food and crafts from farmers markets, etc. and you’ll be buying from not only your own country but from local merchants and artists.

Now over to you.  What can you recommend?  Thanks for participating and feel free to post any other related comments or, if you sell something, to let us know what it is and where we can find it. Extra points if it’s also made from US ingredients/products (or from those in your country, if you’re not from the US.)

As November comes to a close, we’re given the opportunity to choose our theme for Sally’s challenge.  I’ve chosen “Animals”, so that I could feature this fetching canine that caught my eye one day while we were driving.  S/he looks very intent, but there’s just something about a dog with its head out, smelling all those smells we can’t and feeling the wind in its face, that makes me smile.

“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”
~Josh Billings

© janet m. webb 2016

“A person can learn a lot from a dog, even a loopy one like ours. Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things-a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity. Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty.”
~John Grogan, Marley and Me: Life and Love With the World’s Worst Dog

© janet m. webb 2016

Image  —  Posted: November 27, 2016 in Nature, Silent Sunday
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© janet m. webb 2016

Image  —  Posted: November 26, 2016 in Poetry
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