12 Most Beautiful and Quaint Homes

Huge and abrupt change of pace for this blog, but that’s me (weird as heck). Things I love is what it’s about as well, and beautifully designed homes I do love a lot.

Yep, as much as I do not appreciate the human race, I’m over the top with appreciation for us at our best, and one of those bests is home design, especially the older style homes or those new ones that reflect well on the past.

So, following are some pics of houses that I particularly love the look and “feel” of. I don’t so much like huge stately mansions and such, preferring smaller charming places that don’t resemble hotels. One reason is that I don’t find housecleaning fun, lol. Big green yards, especially back yards, are a plus though…so big lots I like, just not huge houses.

My little condo is nice and I love it, but wouldn’t mind owning one of these lovely homes at all…hope you enjoy looking and dreaming, too. I of course picture them only with vegan foods in the fridge and pantry and happy dogs lolling about in bliss. No mean people allowed!!!

(All images are from the web, labeled as public domain or free to re-use or credited where required.) Click on pic for full size view…

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Harriet Phillips Bungalow – photo credit: Daniel Case

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Lake Little Historical House, Port Townsend, Washington

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Spanish Mission-style House in Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia

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Craftsman Bungalow

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Pisgah Historical Home, Highland Park, California – photo credit: Ilmari Karonen

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George L. Burlingame House – photo credit: Ed Uthman – PROBABLY MY TOP PICK 🙂

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California Bungalow, Alexandria Virginia

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Sears Catalog House circa 1926 – photo credit: Bootbearwdc on Flickr

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Craftsman House, San Jose, California – photo credit: David Sawyer on Flickr

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Red Brick House

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Simply labeled “home”

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“Holiday House”

Note: If anyone should comment, please pardon the delay in posting…I have comments on approval because of trolls, business as usual on the web, haha.

The Meaning of Life – Making Sense of Our Cosmic Insane Asylum

We need a new religion…

St. Peter - "Any animal which is slaughtered is defiled, and its meat defiles."

St. Peter – “Any animal which is slaughtered is defiled and its meat defiles.”

If souls are eternal, and I believe that’s so, God is all of us, every sentient life ever born to die on this planet, for all time. These unfathomable numbers of births and deaths must be endured by God to cleanse itself, to filter out the bad from the good and eventually to be pure bliss without the pain and misery of the disease called evil. As far as what “God” is, exactly, I don’t know…we’re all in the dark about that. As an infinitesimal part of said God while here as individuals, we’re all far too cut off to see the whole, out there, somewhere. Or everywhere. Where “there” is no place we can understand.

A huge part of the cleansing process would be to purify the marginal, as in good Germans or those who are conscious of the sources of their meat, and who only support necessary cruelty, or who remain ignorant and know not what they do. Those who enable evil but are basically good themselves, often amazingly good in other ways. The marginal must be made purely good somehow, to be welcome back to the self-perfecting “creator.” That would be what we think of as heaven. While pure evil, when it is at last firmly identified, is sent off to its own reward with only itself to prey upon. As in “reap what you sow.” The obvious goal is for goodness to be in real peace at last. Rest In Peace. God is to become pure goodness, pure love, joy, all things wonderful. But the process itself is terribly messy…hellish. Here we all are, in it.

The religion mankind instead teaches itself…

The angry, egotistical, vengeful, blood-lusting, cruel god of the bibles would be a manmade charlatan, in this way of looking at it all. A demiurge, as in the Gnostic Christian view. The demiurge is defined as a being subordinate to the Supreme Being (the pure goodness in all life and the universe). This “false god” is considered to be the controller of the material world and antagonistic to all that is purely spiritual. The purpose of that, I guess, would be to keep us all in the dark, to keep our trials a total mystery to us and make them as difficult as possible. For many of us to act as mindless faithfuls, believing and attempting to live according to bible texts which rational minds see as madness.

Another purpose for said false god would be to prevent this purging and purification of the true Supreme Being, because this false god is evil itself (as in “devil”) and doesn’t want to be banished. That makes what’s behind the sadistic, brutal teachings of those bibles a lot clearer, to me anyways.

Earth as Purgatory…

In my estimation, the real God’s purging process is what we are all part of here. As in purgatory, where souls are being tested and sorted out, and where others are atoning for their sins before going to heaven. Purgatory, a state of mental anguish or suffering. Where those born as humans, possessing moral knowledge and judgment, are tested to the fullest extent by our treatment of supposedly “inferior” others, whether animal or human, but most significantly, animals.

I believe our suffering as humans also goes into account as far as our eternal fates, which would only be fair. And I believe those humans who die before they can learn and prove themselves get more chances as humans. One thing would be certain: Nothing but proven goodness would be going back “home.”

Hindu Elephant God

Hindu Elephant God

All animals everywhere would be housing God/human souls atoning for their sins before going to heaven. As in the person who regretfully supported animal abuse and killing who must endure life as a totally innocent pig or cow in a meat farm to be made to understand and become pure before being welcome back home, where evil is no longer tolerated or suffered. Some humans would require many lifetimes here as others…anyone from squirrels to cows to creatures like fleas (parasitic people?) who can be justifiably killed for being a health hazard, or whoever…before being welcome back.

Our past life(lives) seem to be obliterated from our minds while we’re here, for reasons unknown, but perhaps because the influences of the past might keep us from further learning and thus prevent our being purified, requiring more physical lives to sort us out.

The non-human (innocent and unknowing animal) existence must teach the soul a lesson that cannot be learned when one possesses human moral knowledge and judgment. Since when the individual had that great opportunity, that knowledge, he/she failed, but not to a hopeless extent. These marginal, benign but evil-enabling souls wouldn’t learn as fully functioning humans, so they have to learn as “other” (whether animals or desperately disadvantaged people, likely victims of unjust violence and undeserved deaths). Those souls clearly deemed hopelessly evil would go straight from being human to being forever banished to exist with only their kind, i.e., hell.

The Buddhists are right or mostly so?

phra_ajan_jerapunyo-abbot_of_watkungtaphaoI used to believe this was a fruitless, even counterproductive process because the evil required to “punish” those now innocent animals would be never-ending. So reincarnation seemed sadistic and pointless to me. But being born as animal is not actually punishment, it’s purification. Their having good lives knowing the love and care of good people teaches them just as much as their being in pain and fear from birth to death at the hands of the sadistic and/or foolish. Either way, they learn empathy from the viewpoint of the most vulnerable. They understand why evil must be identified and cast out forever.

The choices involved for humans regarding animals and the resulting actions we take are vital to judging us and sorting us out. So it must be done. As random as it all seems…and is…there is a method to the madness. Nature’s violence and predation are of course involved in the process as much as anything else…those animals, too, are God/human souls being purified.

In this purgatory, the incentive to put an end to people’s exploitation/abuse/killing of animals is as strong as ever, since that also serves to put and end to the evil, not to perpetuate it. This is the very good reason why animal advocates are more and more compelled speak up, to “preach” to everyone, as hated as we are for it. Those who know better, do better, and otherwise hopeless souls get “saved” in the bargain. Best of all, this world becomes far more beautiful, less violent, less frightening…far less hellish. No one loses from that. And soon this place of predators and prey, kill to eat, survival of the fittest, food chains, etc. …this place full of chaos, bloodshed and anguish…ceases to be necessary any longer. Everything will be sorted out and everything will be in perfection, forevermore.

pig_lactationDo I think my being vegan makes me close to perfect, heaven bound?

I don’t know. I don’t claim to know how the decisions are made about who gets to go where and when, but I’m more and more trusting that the system makes perfect sense and that justice prevails in the end, that everything works out for the best, despite what a miserable hell this world is for so many innocent ones, as well as for those of us who empathize and suffer continually for the most persecuted and suffering of others.

I of course don’t know for certain where I’ll go after this life, but certainly hope it’s heaven (who wouldn’t?), or if I’m not pure & good enough yet, to a human life here again but in an enlightened, healthy, secure family that is already reliably vegan for ethical reasons, so that I can more effectively help to get this extensive and excruciating process to completion. Or maybe I need to live an animal existence to perfect my soul…and I would certainly hope to be a companion animal for someone like myself or better, and never victimized by evil. Another (selfish) reason to fight for animal rights and human kindness everywhere.

Most importantly, I believe the animals and other innocent victims of evil here are in bliss, safe forever at the end of their “processing.” Back home. But a far, far better home. A perfect home.

A personal memory and hard-learned lesson…

chasing_ghosts_at_cha%cc%82teau_de_vianden_3940080719My grandma’s spirit somehow communicated all of this to me in brief seconds the night after she died in our home, although I was typically slow in catching on, all caught up in teen angst and a custom brand of misery. She was my first close family death and it was beyond sad, it was life-changing. On that strange night and afterward, she spiritually got through to me that animals are far more important than people realized and that everything will be made perfect in the end. She came to me as I lay in bed (scared the living daylights out of me) to get this message through, probably because she was soon to be reborn as an animal to be purified. After that brief appearance as a ghost in late 1973 and then for awhile as a part of my mind, grandma was then not heard from again, even though I needed much more guidance.

Guide yourself, young doofus, it all seemed to say.

I first went vegetarian for awhile in the year following grandma’s ethereal message, but it didn’t last and I was still somewhat of a malignant asshole for many years, interspersed with being the opposite (and vegetarian off & on), as if to compensate. But that important seed was firmly planted, and here I am, a far better person than ever possible before that. So, I’m one of these many obsessed vegans and animal liberation blatherers of today. But it is vital. Thank you, grandma, for that salvation.

So in conclusion…

516396125_1280x720The real God is good. Goodness is its own reward. Evil requires retribution as in banishment. Reap what you sow. Have faith and be kind and fight for it. Live by the Golden Rule. Clichés, yes, but meaningful and true. Earn your way back to our newly perfect…Home. Best of all, to be with all of your loved ones once again…perfectly devoid of evil, suffering and death.

Great for Your Heart – Seventeen Easy-to-Get Plant Foods

First, have a look at this extremely vital organ (click to enlarge)
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So yeah, the heart is the strongest and hardest working muscle in the body. It’s amazingly complex, so it and your entire cardiovascular (heart and blood vessels) and vitally connected pulmonary (lung) systems need good care…

Below is a nice selection of beneficial foods for heart health. But they’re good for us in other ways as well, such as cancer prevention, brain health, and so on. To keep it concise, I’ll only concentrate on heart health here and won’t go on about sources or every single reason why, all of which can be found by searching the individual foods online at nutrition or medical sites. And of course there are other heart-healthy foods too, but those listed here are some of the best, and ones I especially like.

As far as serving sizes, it’s up to you of course, but what seems best are bigger servings for the lower calorie/fat foods and smaller amounts for the high fat/calorie foods, according to individual tastes and needs. Just keep your body mass index (BMI) at 25 or lower and don’t overeat regularly or have huge binges, and you can prevent abuse of your system. Such self-abuse of course leads to diseases including diabetes, and that is miserable.

I have most of these foods fairly regularly, so my heart should be pretty healthy. It seems to be. But stress takes a toll, so I need to be cutting down on that. Exercise is of course important too and I get in some of that every day. And thank goodness for those hyperactive little doggies who make me get out for walks & hikes regularly. If I skip a day they hound me without mercy. 😩

So, here is solely the food “prescription” for a healthy heart, in my estimation going by studying nutrition research online. Images are public domain. In alphabetical order:

Asparagus ~

asparagusIt has high amounts of the amino acid asparagine which is a natural diuretic, increasing urination and ridding the body of excess salt. That’s especially good for people with edema, high blood pressure or other heart conditions. Asparagus is also loaded with antioxidants which neutralize cell-damaging free radicals in the body.

Avocados ~ 

avocado-878958_960_720They contain healthy monounsaturated fats which may lower heart disease risk factors. They’re also high in antioxidants and in potassium. They go great with big green salads along with tomatoes.

Bananas ~

banana-1025109_960_720Not only a tasty satisfying treat to replace candy and such, bananas are high in potassium which helps to lower blood pressure, giving you a 27% lower risk of heart disease than people with low potassium diets. And bananas are a good source of magnesium which is also important for heart health.   

Berries, notably Blueberries ~

berries-1225101_960_720Eating more than three servings of blueberries and strawberries a week significantly lowers risk of heart attack, said benefit due to compounds known as anthocyanins, flavonoids (which are antioxidants) that may decrease blood pressure and dilate blood vessels. Anthocyanins give plants their red and blue colors.

Chia & Flax Seeds ~

chia-397076_960_720They’re high in omega-3 fatty acids and fiber and thereby good for your heart (as well as digestion & elimination). Flaxseed meal is better digested because the hard seeds mostly pass through undigested. The ground meal should be kept frozen until used, and a couple of tablespoons a day on cereal or in smoothies is a good way to have them.

Chocolate (Dark, 70%+) ~

chocolate-968457_960_720Studies show that dark chocolate may benefit your heart by reducing nonfatal heart attacks and stroke in high-risk people. This applies to only dark (not milk) chocolate; dark chocolate contains flavonoids (polyphenols) which may help blood pressure, clotting and inflammation.

Coffee (black without sugar) ~

coffeeA 2012 NEJM study found a 10 to 15% lower risk of dying from heart disease or other causes in men and women who drank six or more cups of coffee a day, but other research has shown that even two cups can lower risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke by 30%. But coffee isn’t necessarily good in large amounts due to the stimulating and heartbeat increase effects, so it’s not for everyone.

Greens – Broccoli, Spinach and Kale, etc. ~

green-vegetables-1149790_960_720Green leafy vegetables are especially good for your heart due to their being high in carotenoids which act as antioxidants to rid your body of harmful compounds. They’re also high in fiber and contain loads of vitamins and minerals, notably vitamins K and A (beta-carotene). Kale also has some omega-3 fatty acids.

Legumes ~

legumes-black-bean-dishBeans, lentils, and peas are an excellent source of protein. One study found that people who ate legumes at least four times a week had a 22% lower risk of heart disease than those who consumed them less than once a week. And legumes may help control blood sugar in people with diabetes, which is vital for avoiding diabetes complications, including heart disease.

Nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios, peanuts and macadamias) ~

mixed_nuts_small_white1All of which contain healthy fiber, and vitamin E which helps lower bad cholesterol. And walnuts are especially high in omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts are high in calories & fat but eating a modest amount daily doesn’t seem to contribute to obesity.

Oatmeal & other Whole Grains ~

oatmealThey’re high in soluble fiber, which can lower cholesterol, acting as a sponge in the digestive tract to soak up cholesterol so it isn’t absorbed into the bloodstream. And all the whole grains provide us with needed vitamins & minerals. This means sprouted breads and other whole grain products like cereals, barley, kamut, etc..

Olive Oil (Extra-Virgin) ~

olive-oil-968657_960_720A 2013 NEJM study showed that people at high risk for heart disease who ate diets high in grains, fruits, vegetables, along with nuts and olive oil reduced their risk of heart attacks, strokes and dying by 30%. Olive oil is a good source of monounsaturated fats, which can help reduce both cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Olives themselves are another source of good fat.

Orange, Red & Yellow Vegetables ~

orange-veggies-sweet-potatoSuch as carrots, sweet potatoes, red peppers and butternut squash are loaded with carotenoids, fiber and vitamins (notably vitamin A as beta-carotene), all of which are great for heart health. I like to get several sweet potatoes, bake them all and have them on hand all week for a great healthy addition to meals. Note: Peppers and gourds (squash) are technically fruits but commonly used as vegetables.

Orange-Fleshed Fruits (especially citrus but including mangoes, cantaloupe, etc.) ~

orangesMeaning fresh whole fruits and juices (no added sugar). The flavonoids in oranges and grapefruits lower risk of ischemic (clot) stroke by 19%. The high vitamin C in citrus is linked with a lower risk of heart disease, as is the fiber. And mangoes, cantaloupe, pumpkin, etc., have the additional benefits of beta-carotene (vitamin A).

Potatoes (russet) ~

potatoes-1388512_960_720They’re rich in potassium which can lower blood pressure, and fiber which can lower risk for heart disease. Provided you keep them low-fat, like with a drizzle of seasoned oil (not deep fried). Besides that, when prepared right they’re delicious and filling.

Soy/Tofu (organic non-gmo) ~

soy-orange-marinated-tofuRich in protein, low fat (polyunsaturated), no cholesterol; soy has been shown to help reduce blood pressure. Tofu contains all eight essential amino acids, and is also a good source of iron, calcium, manganese, selenium, phosphorous, magnesium, copper, zinc, and vitamin B1.

Tomatoes (fresh whole, raw or cooked) ~

tomatoesHigh in heart-healthy potassium and a good source of lycopene which helps get rid of bad cholesterol, keeps blood vessels open and lowers heart attack risk. And they’re low in calories and sugar.