This blog is to help you in preparing for an emergency. It also contains other information that you might find spiritually up-lifting. This is not an official website of "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints". This site is maintained by Barry McCann (barry@mail.com)

Monday, January 26, 2015

If You Find Yourself Stranded During ‘Historic’ Blizzard, Here Are Several Potentially Life-Saving Tricks to Keep Warm

There are fears that a “historic” blizzard with the potential for hurricane-force winds and 1 to 3 feet of snow could paralyze the Northeast for days. Snow was already blowing sideways on Monday with ever-increasing intensity in New York City by midafternoon and flurries began in Boston as forecasters predicted the snowstorm would build into a blizzard.
While it’s advised to take all the appropriate precautions to remain safe during the snowstorm, it never hurts to be prepared for the worst. If you ever find yourself stranded in the blistering cold, there are several unconventional ways to start fires, keep warm and — more importantly — alive in extreme situations.

“Gum Wrapper Fire Starter”

Gum wrappers and batteries are two items that can many times be found discarded in a car or at the bottom of a purse. But combine the two items and you have an effective fire-starting tool.

Water = Fire?

On Grant Thompson’s “The King of Random” YouTube channel, it’s revealed how water can be used in several ways to start a fire. This can come in handy if you are left without power, lighters or matches:

Survive in Extreme Cold with a Fire Heat Reflector

A fire reflector can help keep you warm during extreme situations in the blistering cold.
This one requires some work and is only applicable in potentially life-threatening survival situations. Watch a video tutorial via YouTube below:
Of course, the best advice is to stay home during extreme cold weather if possible and have enough food, water and necessary survival gear on hand.
If you are preparing for the severe snowstorms in the Northeast, Con Edison provides some more conventional safety tips:

• If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them. Treat all downed wires as if they are live. Never attempt to move them or touch them with any object. Be mindful that downed wires can be hidden by snow, tree limbs, leaves or water.Report all downed wires to Con Edison and your local police department immediately. If a power line falls on your car while you’re in it, stay inside the vehicle and wait for emergency personnel.

• If your power goes out, disconnect or turn off appliances that would otherwise turn on automatically when service is restored. If several appliances start up at once, the electric circuits may overload.

• Check to make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios or televisions are in working order. Make sure you have a supply of extra batteries. Weather updates and news on restorations of electrical service can be heard on most local radio and television stations.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The 7 Most Prescribed Drugs In The World And Their Natural Counterparts

We don’t have to live in a medicated world, but we certainly choose to. The crux of the matter is that we refuse to proactively think about prevention because we reactively commit to treating the symptoms of underlying health problems. This is the allopathic model. We want the quick fix so we can continue our poor lifestyle and dietary habits. It doesn’t have to be this way, but it is. We can blame doctors, the medical institutions and healthcare systems all we want, but self-responsibility is our only recourse if we are ever to surface from this mess. There are no excuses–if you’re taking one of these drugs, consult with a Natural Health Practitioner this week about phasing out your medication and phasing in these powerful natural foods and remedies.
Of the over 4 billion prescriptions written every year, the United States and Canada make up more than 80% of the world’s prescription opioids (psychoactive medications). Between 1997 and 2012 prescription opioids increased in dosage by almost 500%. Pharmaceuticals and medical errors are now a leading cause of death. Painkillers are the leading cause of accidental death.
In the last 15 years of life, people are experiencing more pain for longer periods than at any point on our historical record. If you think life expectancy has increased to the benefit of mankind, you’re not looking at the numbers.
78% of U.S. prescriptions written in 2010 were for generic drugs (both unbranded and those still sold under a brand name). The most prescribed drugs aren’t always the best selling drugs, there’s a difference.
Prescriptions for pain, cholesterol reduction, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, antacids, antipsychotics, diabetes and antibiotics make up 100% of the most prescribed drugs.
Make a commitment to yourself right now and start incorporating some of these amazing foods into your diet with no consequence of side effects. When you accept this, you will get off prescription medications for good.
Check out the top 7 most prescribed drugs and the best natural remedies to treat and prevent disease.
1. HYDROCODONE (Acetaminophen/Vicodin/Oxycontin)
Use: For Pain 
Currently the single most prescribed drug in the world. More and more doctors are getting huge payouts from pharmaceutical companies to promote these hydrocodone, especially generic drugs. They make up more than 20% of the top prescribed medications.
Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), told Fox News that doctors are handing out narcotics like candy. Some doctors are giving patients prescriptions for narcotics for even minor injuries.
How it Works: 
It is an orally psychoactive compound that works as a narcotic and analgesic. It is biotransformed by the liver into several metabolites. It is highly dependent on metabolism by the Cytochrome P450 pathway.
Respiratory depression; bradycardia; coma; seizures; cardiac arrest; liver damage; and death. Inherited genes such as the Cytochrome P450 affects metabolic pathways–some cannot process it at all, whereas a smaller percentage can get even more strength from it than usual.
Natural Foods: 
Ginger, turmeric, berries, cayenne pepper, celery/celery seeds, cherries, dark green veggies, walnuts.
See: Natural Healing Remedies: 10 Foods That Fight Inflammation And Pain
2. STATINS (Generic versions of Lipitor/Zocor/Crestor)
Use: Reduction of LDL Cholesterol
Approximately 15% of the top prescribed medications are generic statins. A study published in January 2012 in the Archives of Internal Medicine linked statins to 48 percent increased risk for type-2 diabetes.
The are NO scientific studies ever documented which have proved through causation that lowering LDL cholesterol prevents disease. The obsessed culture of lowering cholesterol may actually be causing cancer.
How it Works: 
Statins artificially lower cholesterol levels by inhibiting a critical enzyme HMG-CoA reductase, which plays a central role in the production of cholesterol in the liver.
Inflammation and pathological breakdown of muscle, acute kidney failure, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, interference with sex hormones and death.
Natural Foods:
Nuts, spinach, apples, turmeric, cranberries, tomatoes, green tea, fatty fish, beans, alfalfa herb, capsicum fruit, garlic, psyllium, fenugreek seeds, butcher’s broom, licorice root, hawthorn berry.
– New Data Shows Lycopene Reduces Heart Disease Up To 26 Percent
– Two Apples a Day More Effective At Reducing Heart Disease Than Statin Medications 
– Top 5 Foods and Herbs To Control Cholesterol
– World Renown Heart Surgeon Speaks Out On What Really Causes Heart Disease
3. LISINOPRIL (Prinivil/Zestril) AND NORVASC (Amlodipine)
Use: Reduction of High Blood Pressure
In combination, Lisinopril and Norvasc make up a whopping 23% of the top prescribed medications. This makes them the most prescribed generic medications (if combined) for cardiovascular disease and blood pressure. Individually, Lisinopril constitutes approximately 14% and Norvasc about 9%.
How it Works: 
Lisinopril is typically used for the treatment of hypertension, congestive heart failure, and heart attacks. Norvasc is used for hypertension and angina. It accomplishes this by inhibiting the influx of calcium ions into vascular smooth muscle and cardiac muscle so it essentially interferes with the metabolism of calcium.
Cancer, blood disorders, development of breasts in men, impotence, depression, tachycardia, enlargement of gums, inflammation of the liver, elevated blood glucose, hepatitis, life threatening skin conditions.
Natural Foods:
Any foods high in vitamin C (chili peppers, guavas, bell peppers, thyme, parsley, dark leafy greens, broccoli), any foods high in magnesium (chocolate, green leafy vegetables, Brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, blackstrap molasses, pumpkin and squash seeds, pine nuts, and black walnuts) and any foods high in potassium (mushrooms, bananas, dark green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, oranges and dates). Coconut oil/water and CoQ10 are also very effective for lowering blood pressure.
– Magnesium Reduces Blood Pressure Naturally Without Side Effects
– Low Salt Diets Do Not Decrease Blood Pressure, Period
– Vitamin C Supplements Reduce Blood Pressure Without Side Effects Associated With Medication
– Low Potassium Linked To High Blood Pressure
4. SYNTHROID (levothyroxine sodium) 
Use: Hypothyroidism
A synthetic form of the thyroid hormone thyroxine, generic Synthroid makes up more than 11% of the top prescribed medications. It’s used to treat hypothyroidism. The related drug dextrothyroxine (D-thyroxine) was used in the past as a treatment for elevated cholesterol but was withdrawn due to cardiac side-effects.
How it Works: 
It replaces the thyroid hormone which is naturally occurring in the thyroid gland essentially halting natural production.
Long-term suppression of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) causes cardiac side-effects and contributes to decreases in bone mineral density (high TSH levels are also well known to contributes to osteoporosis.) May also cause elevated blood glucose levels, heart failure, coma and adrenal insufficiency. TSH directly influences the whole process of iodine trapping and thyroid hormone production so use of synthroid directly affects how the body metabolizes iodine.
Natural Foods:
Any foods containing iodine such as seaweed, kelp, radish, parsley, fish, seafood, eggs, bananas, cranberries, strawberries, himalayan crystal salt. Also, copper, iron, selenium and zinc are essential in the production of thyroid hormones. Exercise a minimum of 20-30 minutes per day — enough to raise the heartbeat.
– Seaweed Extracts Can Help You Lose Weight, Mostly Body Fat
– 8 Critical Nutrients Lacking In More Than 70 Percent of Diets
– The Number One Reason So Many Women Have Trouble Losing Weight
5. PRILOSEC (omeprazole/generic versions of nexium) 
Use: Antacid
A proton pump inhibitor which constitutes just over 8% of the top prescribed medications. Omeprazole is one of the most widely prescribed drugs for reflux disease (GORD/GERD/LPR) and ulcers internationally and is available over the counter in some countries.
How it Works: 
It suppresses gastric acid secretion by specific inhibition of the gastric acid ions in cells. The absorption of omeprazole takes place in the small intestine essentially turning off the switch which promotes healthy digestion of foods. Omeprazole is also completely metabolized by the cytochrome P450 system.
Angina, ulcers, tachycardia, bradycardia, palpitations, elevated blood pressure, development of male breasts, inflammation of the pancreas, irritable colon, mucosal atrophy of the tongue, liver disease/failure, elevated blood sugar, muscle weakness, skin conditions, tinnitus, inflammation of the eyes, urinary frequency, testicular pain, anemia and blood cell disorders.
Natural Foods:
Grapefruits, probioticsbroccoli sprouts, manuka honey, mastic gum, marshmallow tea, glutamine, slippery elm, deglycyrrhized liquorice (DGL), aloe vera juice, baking soda, pickle juice.
– Grapefruit Heals Stomach Ulcers
– Broccoli Sprouts May Prevent Gastritis, Ulcers and Stomach Cancers
– Manuka Honey Reverses Antibiotic Resistance, Treats Disease 
Use: Antibiotic
In combination, azithromycin and amoxicillin contribute towards a mind-blowing 17% of the top prescribed medications. Then we wonder why we have antibiotic resistance. On their own, each contributes about 8.5%. Azithromycin is one of the world’s best-selling antibiotics and derived from erythromycin. Amoxicillin is usually the drug of choice for children.
How it Works: 
Inhibits the synthesis of bacterial cell walls and interfering with their protein synthesis. These drugs also inhibit the protein synthesis of good bacteria needed for immunity and proper digestion.
Inflammation of the liver, inflammation and destruction of the stomach lining, destruction of healthy bacterial populations, inflammation of the colon, allergic reactions, obesity, human antibiotic resistance.
Natural Foods:
Sunlight (vit D), garlic, coconut oil, turmeric, foods high in nicotinamide (vit B3) such as salmon, sardines and nuts. Also manuka honey, olive leaf extract, green tea, pau D’Arco, rose water, myrrh, grapeseed extract, golden seal, oregon grapes, oregano oil, andrographis paniculata, and probiotics.
– Garlic Proven 100 Times More Effective Than Antibiotics, Working In A Fraction of The Time
– Before Antibiotics Ever Existed, Sunlight Was Used To Treat Diseases With Great Success
– The Most Potent B Vitamin That Combats Infections Better Than Antibiotics Ever Could
7. GLUCOPHAGE (metformin)
Use: Oral anti-diabetic drug
Glucophage drugs round up the top 7 but the prescription rate of this drug is rapidly increasing. It makes up about 7% of the top prescribed medications. It is the first-line drug of choice for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, in particular, in overweight and obese people. It also acts to indirectly lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
How it Works: 
By suppressing natural glucose production by the liver, the drug activates an enzyme which plays an important role in insulin signaling, whole body energy balance, and the metabolism of glucose and fats.
Lactic acidosis, impaired liver/kidney function, decreasing thyroid stimulating hormone and testosterone, increased homocysteine levels, malabsorption of vitamin B12, B12 deficiency, bladder cancer, heart failure. The biggest consequence of diabetes drugs is that it causes pancreatic function to substantially decrease inhibiting several hormones and causing other imbalances which are never correctable without abstaining from the drug.
Natural Foods:
Black tea, Sunlight (vit D), potentially coffee (more research needed), turmeric, nuts, chia seeds, green leafy vegetables, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, red grapes, steel cut oatmeal, broccoli, spinach, green beans and strawberries. 90% of all cases of diabetes can be resolved by eating foods with a low glycemic load, and pursuing both weight training and aerobic exercise.
– Study on Black Tea Consumption From 42 Countries Shows It Lowers Diabetes Risk
– Two More Bombshells For Vitamin D: It Prevents Both Type I Diabetes and Cavities
– Coffee’s Anti-Diabetes Benefit
– Healthy Diet, Moderate Exercise Reduce Diabetes Risk Better Than Drugs
– How Turmeric Has An Anti-Diabetic Effect On The Body 
The drugs on which we spend the most money are those that are still new enough to be protected against generic competition. That’s why drugs like Abilify and Seroquel (antipsychotics), as well as Plavix (blood thinner) and Advair Diskus (asthma inhaler) don’t make the list.
Dave Mihalovic is a Naturopathic Doctor who specializes in vaccine research, cancer prevention and a natural approach to treatment.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

An Hour to Watch with Him

One day I was preparing to give a talk in sacrament meeting. I was studying the article “The Atonement of Jesus Christ” by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the March 2008 Liahona.In his article, Elder Holland relates a dream Elder Orson F. Whitney (1855–1931) had in which he saw the Savior in the Garden of Gethsemane. Elder Whitney described the pain and suffering he saw the Savior bear. Then he wrote:
Priest kneeling in prayer at the sacrament table“Presently He arose and walked to where [the] Apostles were kneeling—fast asleep! He shook them gently, awoke them, and in a tone of tender reproach, untinctured by the least show of anger or scolding, asked them if they could not watch with Him one hour. …
“Returning to His place, He prayed again and then went back and found them again sleeping. Again He awoke them, admonished them, and returned and prayed as before. Three times this happened.”1
As I read this, the spirit of revelation entered my mind. In that instant, I realized that the way I could “watch with Him one hour” was in the way I approached sacrament meeting each Sunday. Since then, I have learned that this is an hour in which we can pray to our Heavenly Father in a more meaningful way. Prayer is fundamental at all times, but the Spirit present in that hour of the sacrament is an opportunity to elevate ourselves closer to Heavenly Father and our Savior, Jesus Christ. When we focus our thoughts on the Lord, it is, in a way, accompanying Him at the moment of the agony He endured when taking upon Himself our sins. It is a time to acknowledge the pain He suffered for us.
Sacrament meeting means everything to me. For me it is the hour of infinite salvation. It has become a sacred time in which I remember and commit in prayer and in spirit to honor my covenants and to follow the perfect example of my Savior. I know that He lives and loves me. I know that it is only through His sacrifice and His precious blood that was spilt that we can all be saved. I know this is true because as I have worked at “watching with Him,” my understanding has been enlightened, my life has been blessed, and my vision of eternal life in His presence has been deepened.

A Reflective, Reverent Moment

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
“[The sacrament] should be a powerful, reverent, reflective moment. It should encourage spiritual feelings and impressions. As such it should not be rushed. It is not something to ‘get over’ so that the real purpose of a sacrament meeting can be pursued. This is the real purpose of the meeting. And everything that is said or sung or prayed in those services should be consistent with the grandeur of this sacred ordinance.”
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “This Do in Remembrance of Me,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 68.

How Can Taking the Sacrament Change My Life?

In the October 2012 general conference, Elder Don R. Clarke of the Seventy taught, “If we properly prepare for the sacrament, we can transform our lives.” He then suggested “five principles that can bless our lives as we partake of the sacrament worthily”:
  1. 1. 
    Have a feeling of gratitude for the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
  2. 2. 
    Remember that we are renewing baptismal covenants.
  3. 3. 
    Seek to feel forgiven of our sins.
  4. 4. 
    Seek inspiration for solutions to our problems.
  5. 5. 
    Partake of the sacrament worthily so we can be filled with the Holy Ghost.
Elder Clarke promised: “It will always be a great sacrament meeting if the sacrament is the center of our worship.”2

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Earthquake Survival Tips: Think You’re Safe? Think Again.

Earthquake survival might seem like a more specialized type of preparedness. For example, those on the West Coast of the United States are more likely to know what to do to survive an earthquake than people in other parts of the US. But it’s a mistake to assume that since you don’t live in an area that’s prone to earthquakes, you are safe from this type of natural disaster and don’t need to do anything to prepare.
Over the past few weeks, more than 12 earthquakes have been detected in Texas, a state where earthquakes are not common.
KHOU reported that a magnitude of 3.5 jolted Irving; the trembling is said to have begun on Tuesday, January 6. 
According to NBC 5, there were tremors around the old Texas Stadium in Irving.
The Weather Channel says North Texas was jolted by 11 earthquakes in a span of just 24 hours. 
Later however, NBC 5 asked some experts and they were told that the probability of a strong earthquake hitting Texas is “very remote”.

Earthquake Survival Tips

Even though Texas has several fault zones including the Balcones, Luling, Mexia, and Talco, we Texans don’t commonly think of earthquakes as a threat. But this is a mistake, especially for those of us who are preppers and want to be ready for everything. We never want to be vulnerable in the face of disaster.
This is precisely the reason we have collected some earthquake survival tips in our hopes to reach out and inform as many people as we can, preppers or not. We are all in this together. Stay safe.

Earthquake Survival Tips: Before an Earthquake

The following are things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your property in the event of an earthquake.
  • To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
earthquake survival, earthquake emergency kit, emergency kits, prepping for earthquakes
Preparing a specialized earthquake survival kit is essential. Via mnn.com
  • Fasten shelves securely to walls.
  • Place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.
  • Store breakable items such as bottled foods, glass, and china in low, closed cabinets with latches.
  • Mirrors, picture frames, and other hanging items should be secured to the wall with closed hooks or earthquake putty. Do not hang heavy objects over beds, sofas, or any place you may be seated.
  • Objects such as framed photos, books, lamps, and other items that you keep on shelves and tables can become flying hazards. Secure them with hooks, adhesives, or earthquake putty to keep them in place.
  • Bookcases, filing cabinets, china cabinets, and other tall furniture should be anchored to wall studs (not drywall) or masonry. Use flexible straps that allow them to sway without falling to the floor.
  • Electronics such as computers, televisions and microwave ovens are heavy and expensive to replace. Secure them with flexible nylon straps.
  • Brace overhead light fixtures and top heavy objects.
  • Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections. These are potential fire risks. Get appropriate professional help. Do not work with gas or electrical lines yourself.
  • Install flexible pipe fittings to avoid gas or water leaks. Flexible fittings are more resistant to breakage.
  • Secure your water heater, refrigerator, furnace and gas appliances by strapping them to the wall studs and bolting to the floor. If recommended by your gas company, have an automatic gas shut-off valve installed that is triggered by strong vibrations.
  • Repair any deep cracks in ceilings or foundations. Get expert advice if there are signs of structural defects.
  • Get professional help to assess the building’s structure and then take steps to install nonstructural solutions, including foundation bolts, bracing cripple walls, reinforcing chimneys, or installing an earthquake-resistant bracing system for a mobile home. Examples of structures that may be more vulnerable in an earthquake are those not anchored to their foundations or having weak crawl space walls, unbraced pier-and-post foundations, or unreinforced masonry walls or foundations. 
  • Visit www.fema.gov/earthquake-safety-home for guidance on nonstructural ways to reduce damage and earthquake resistant structural design or retrofit.
  • Store weed killers, pesticides, and flammable products securely in closed cabinets with latches and on bottom shelves.
  • Locate safe spots in each room under a sturdy table or against an inside wall. Reinforce this information by moving to these places during each drill.
  • Hold earthquake drills with your family members: Drop, cover and hold on.
earthquake survival, survival tip, earthquake drills in schools
One of the most common earthquake survival methods is the earthquake drill. Via Presidiosentinel.com
Click here to read more.

Earthquake Survival Tips: During the Earthquake

  • If you are indoors, stay there. Quickly move to a safe location in the room such as under a strong desk, a strong table, or along an interior wall. The goal is to protect yourself from falling objects and be located near the structural strong points of the room. Avoid taking cover near windows, large mirrors, hanging objects, heavy furniture, heavy appliances or fireplaces.
  • If you are cooking, turn off the stove and take cover.
  • If you are outdoors, move to an open area where falling objects are unlikely to strike you. Move away from buildings, power lines and trees.
  • If you are driving, slow down smoothly and stop on the side of the road. Avoid stopping on or under bridges and overpasses, or under power lines, trees and large signs. Stay in your car.

Earthquake Survival Tips: What to Do After an Earthquake

  • After an earthquake, the disaster may continue. Expect and prepare for potential aftershocks, landslides or even a tsunami. Tsunamis are often generated by earthquakes.
  • Each time you feel an aftershock, drop, cover and hold on. Aftershocks frequently occur minutes, days, weeks and even months following an earthquake.
  • Check yourself for injuries and get First Aid, if necessary, before helping injured or trapped persons.
  • Put on long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, sturdy shoes and work gloves to protect against injury from broken objects.
  • Look quickly for damage in and around your home and get everyone out if your home is unsafe.
  • Listen to a portable, battery-operated or hand-crank radio for updated emergency information and instructions.
To read all the tips, click here.
earthquake survival, survival tips, earthquake tips, how to survive an earthquake, what to do in an earthquake
How to survive in an earthquake. Click to enlarge.

Earthquake Survival Tips with Interesting Perspective

Call it contradictory especially when you consider the source, but these earthquake survival tips are also worth reading.
1) Everyone who simply “ducks and covers” WHEN BUILDINGS COLLAPSE is crushed to death — Every time, without exception. People who get under objects, like desks or cars, are always crushed.
2) Cats, dogs and babies all naturally often curl up in the fetal position. You should too in an earthquake. It is a natural safety/survival instinct. You can survive in a smaller void. Get next to an object, next to a sofa, next to a large bulky object that will compress slightly but leave a void next to it.
3) Wooden buildings are the safest type of construction to be in during an earthquake. The reason is simple: the wood is flexible and moves with the force of the earthquake. If the wooden building does collapse, large survival voids are created. Also, the wooden building has less concentrated, crushing weight. Brick buildings will break into individual bricks. Bricks will cause many injuries but less squashed bodies than concrete slabs.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

10 signs you might be addicted to your smartphone

Are you addicted to your smartphone?
1.  Yes 
2.  No 
3.  I don't know- I need to take the test

1. When you check your phone to see the current temperature instead of opening a window, and/or when you check your phone to see the current time instead of looking at the watch that's right on your wrist. (I just did this!)
2. When you have to consciously say to your spouse "Let's put our phones away" while watching TV because it's more common that they're out than away.
3. If you are answering emails in a dimly lit reception area while waiting for your massage therapist to destress you, you may have a problem. (OK, I've done this too!)
4. When your kids have to text you their carry-out orders because you've lost the ability to retain information that is not received on your phone.
5. When you hope you hit a bunch of red lights on the way home so you can comment on a Facebook post.
6. When one of your daughter's first drawings of you has a BlackBerry in your hand.
7. When you wake up, you grab your phone and check it before you get up to pee.
8. When you drop a phone on your face because you're dozing off.
9. When you choose your clothing based on the best pockets to hold your phone.
10. When you are staring at photos you took on your phone while the actual moment is taking place right in front of you. (Done that too!)
I promised ten but here is one more that cracked me up: If you let your lunch get cold so you could answer a query -- on your smartphone -- about signs you may have a problem with your devices.

Monday, January 19, 2015


California’s December rainstorms are long forgotten.

Two separate federal agencies predicted this weekend that the three-year-old drought plaguing the Golden State will continue, at least across most of the state.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts that while Southern California could see some relief, the drought will likely persist, or even intensify, in the central and northern parts of the state.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Water and Climate Center forecasted that while water supplies are expected to be at normal levels this winter in much of the West, the current snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountains “is far below normal.” The snowpack is a critical source of water for California during what is supposed to be the state’s “dry season.”
After a particularly wet December, January has been completely dry in most of the Golden State, according to the Contra Costa Times. While the federal predictions sound dire for central and northern Californians already struggling with the drought’s effects, some weather experts say it is too early to tell whether the state will experience a fourth full year of drought.
“A midwinter dry spell occurs almost every winter, and it averages 19 days,” meteorologist Jan Null told the Times. “Now if it persists on to February and March, then we’re getting out of the normal realm.”
But farmers like Pete Aiello, of Uesugi Farms in Gilroy, are wary.
“Mother Nature supplied plenty of irrigation that month,” Aiello told the Times of the fact that he did not need to water his strawberries once in December.”I don’t remember the last time we got through January without a drop. We usually get a little rain.”>
Water agencies are waiting to see whether a wet February or March will make up for the dryness of January. In December, the city of Santa Cruz ended a mandatory water-rationing program when its main reservoir hit 62 percent capacity. However Santa Cruz Water Department spokesman Eileen Cross told the Times that the city could reinstate the measure if it doesn’t begin raining again.
The East Bay Municipal Utility District is similarly reminding customers not to “let off the gas on conservation efforts.”
“December was wet. January is dry. And the rest of the season, we just have no idea,” EBMUD spokeswoman Andrea Pook told the paper. “It could really go either way. It’s just all a matter of where your water comes from, and a storm could come along and just barely miss you. It’s confusing for customers.”
National Water and Climate Center hydrologist Cara McCarthy concedes that long-term forecasts are not always accurate, and that the predictions made by the federal agencies could fail to come to fruition.
“This is just the first forecast of the season; everything can change,” McCarthy said in a statement. “A weak El Niño is forecast for this year, which might play a part in coming months.”
While both forecasts do indeed predict a weak El Niño pattern forming over the next few months, it likely won’t affect the region’s drought outlook. The pattern would mostly bring rainfall to the southwest while leaving the Pacific Northwest dry.
While farmers, meteorologists, and water agencies plot, worry, and react to the prospect of more drought, at least one business owner is still smiling in sunny January.
“The golf courses look outstanding,” course manager Bob Costa told the Times, saying he did not need to turn on the sprinklers this year to keep the greens green. “Great color and firm ground.”