Saturday, August 29, 2015

Just Hours Ago...Pictures of Refugees From Syria, Arriving at Greek Islands

More than half of the 264,500 people who have crossed the Mediterranean in the hope of settling in Europe this year have arrived in Greece - and most of those have landed on the five Greek islands closest to the Turkish coast. Photographer Fernando Del Berro watched some of them arrive on the northern shore of Lesbos.

 Fifty metres from the shore Fouad, from Damascus, raises his two-month-old baby above his head and cries "Freedom!" Many of the other passengers also erupt in cries of joy.
 Closer to the shore, some throw themselves into the water before the bottom of the dangerously overloaded boat touches the pebbles.

 At the end of the 14km trip from Turkey, they are euphoric and cannot wait to be back on dry land - this time Europe, near the village of Efthalou.
The Refugees landed on the Island of Lesbos

 For some the relief at the end of the risky crossing brings tears. Many tell stories of the Turkish coastguard firing water cannon in an attempt to fill the boats and make them sink.

Those who cannot swim find the journey traumatic. Children may need comforting. Tamara, from Syria, has salt water on her hair, face and clothes, but it will dry rapidly in the scorching heat.

The boats often arrive at the hottest time of day, and many on board are dehydrated as well as exhausted. Ojwan, from Aleppo, holds his two sons, sighing: "We're safe now."
A couple take a celebratory selfie next to the flimsy boat that carried them to Europe. Smugglers charge 1,000 euros for adults and 600 for children. One boat may carry 60 people.

 Saad, from Idlib in Syria, holds his nephew while helping his sister to clamber up the slope behind the beach. Local volunteers often meet the boats, hand out water, and explain how to find buses that travel to the island's main town, Mytilini.

 The climb up from the sea to the road is steep in parts of this 13km-long coast. To get to the bus it's a 10km walk that everyone must make, regardless of age or fitness.
For a long time the Turkish coast remains visible behind the travellers. Syrians fleeing a distant war, dragging babies and belongings, have become a familiar sight on the island.
 The UNHCR and Medecins Sans Frontieres run four buses daily to Mytilini from two northern villages, Molyvos and Sykamineas. But up to 1,000 people may arrive on this coast in 24 hours, so some cover the full 65km on foot. Saad and his family are lucky enough to have seats.
Young man stares out of bus window
Anyone who has left Kabul, Damascus or Baghdad and arrived on Lesbos is already a long way from home, but this may be just the start of a longer journey

'Nazi Gold Train May Be Booby-Trapped'

Treasure-hunters have been warned away from a long-lost Nazi "gold train" amid reports it has been found after 70 years - and may be booby-trapped.
Since the end of World War II, it has been suggested that the train - packed with gold, gems and weapons - went missing in Poland while fleeing the Red Army.
According to local folklore, the train vanished near Ksiaz castle, two miles from the south-eastern city of Walbrzych.
Fortune-hunters have looked for it for decades, and in the communist era, the Polish army even carried out several fruitless searches.
This month, however, two men, a Pole and a German, said they had found a train with guns and valuables.
The two men said through lawyers that they wanted 10% of the value of anything that was found as a reward.
So far no visual evidence has been offered of the train's existence.
However, a leading Polish cultural official has now dropped the strongest hint yet that there is truth to the men's claims.
At a news conference, Deputy Culture Minister Piotr Zuchowski said: "In connection with the published information referring to the find of the so-called 'gold train' in the region of Walbrzych, an increase in the activity of treasure hunters has been observed.
"I am appealing to people to stop any such searches until the end of official procedures leading to the securing of the find."
Mr Zuchowski warned treasure hunters to stop looking for the train because it could be mined and dangerous.

"Inside the hidden train - of whose existence I am convinced - there could be dangerous materials from the time of World War II," he said.
"There is a great chance that the train is mined."
Walbrzych's deputy mayor told journalists that the train's location was being kept under wraps, as well as identity of the two men.
"The find is within our administrative boundaries," said Zygmunt Nowaczyk.
"I cannot of course reveal the exact place."
Author Tom Bower told Sky News it could be an art train as there were many of them that crossed occupied Europe and contained huge art collections as the Nazis plundered galleries.
He said: "If it is an art train there will be a huge amount of paintings, perhaps diamonds, rubies, precious stones."
He pointed out the "amber room" has never been found and could be in the train. It was a chamber decorated in amber panels backed with gold leafs and mirrors in a palace outside St Petersburg.

Friday, August 28, 2015


 J...  Wherever you are, I'm always right beside you .

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Ask Maxy

Dear Maxy ,
For the past five years , I have been complaining about my husband to everyone who would listen , it seems like . He was so irritating to me in a thousand different ways and after I had talked to him about it forever . I took to talk to other people . Earlier this year , a friend of mine lost her husband to cancer . She had been a big complainer about him too . I have watched though , how grief has changed her view of him and their relationship. She seems to be filled with remorse about his death and about how she was unkind to him , even though she admits he was also unkind to her . This has got me to thinking : I don't want to die mad at my husband or at myself . I really would like to have a happy marriage , but I don't have a clue as to how to mend our old wounds . What do you suggest ?
Reclaiming Love
Dear  Reclaiming Love,
Your marriage has become dysfunctional and you are talking to everyone about it except the person you should be talking to. Have you ever wondered how your constant carping makes your husband feel? You have lost the ability to see things from your husband's perspective . He does have one , you know.
Be grateful that your eyes have been opened to the possibility of change !  There's hope for you if your husband feels the same way. I think that beneath the hostility and apathy, you both long for a safe harbor. Now, let go of your anger and go home and tell your husband  about your revelation .
 Tell him you want to have a healthier , happier marriage  and that you hope he wants that , too. Suggest that you and he get counseling support to help guide you both in the right direction to a more loving place.
Do your best to remember all the happy times that you spent  together . What did you enjoy  doing when you first got married ? What made you smile ? That's a good starting point. Talk to each other  about dating again .  Take it slow, with a renewed  commitment.

Dear Maxy ,
One of my new friends from work likes to write me texts and other messages to get together and update me about various things . She never spell my name right , which drives me up the wall . My name is not difficult , but even if it were , it is written in my signature on my emails and my stationery . I have written her back and always spell out my name , hoping she will notice . So far , she's oblivious . Is it rude for me to point out how to spell my name ? It irritates me every time I see that she spells it wrong .What should I do ?
Spell Check
Dear Spell Check ,
I am a believer in telling people up front, rather than hoping they will figure it out .  You cannot expect her to read your thoughts or feel your frustration. Chances are, your new eager friend  is so excited  about connecting with you  that she has no idea  that she is offending you by misspelling your name .
 Stewing about it is not good for you and may spoil a relationship that might be fun and mutually enjoyable. You may also get the same result if you get annoyed and reprimand her.  So, the next time you text her, simply say , "FYI" : This is how you spell my name ."

Dear Maxy ,
I am a 29-year-old married woman with a 14-month-old son . My husband and I live one hour away from his dad and stepmother , "Gladys" and two hours from my parents .
We all get along great .
When I decided to go back to work , both my mother and Gladys volunteered to watch my son two days apiece . I pay a neighbor to watch him the remaining day , especially since she has two kids of her own and I want my son to have some socialization . It's a perfect setup , and every is happy except my husband's mother , who lives in another state . She is furious that I allow Gladys to watch my son , stating that she was "not related" and not really his grandma" and she will never love him like a real grandma should .
My mother-in-law wants me to have the neighbor watch my son for the two days Gladys is now taking and she even offered to pay the neighbor so it would not come out of my pocket .
My husband has a close relationship with his mother and a polite one with Gladys . (His mother never allowed him to get close to his stepmother, even though she didn't come into the picture until years after the divorce). He's on the fence about this arrangement. But , Maxy , I love Gladys . She is a retired kindergarten teacher who is wonderful with my son .
My MIL is giving me a headache over this . I always thought we had a great relationship and her demands blindsided me . Now she's angry that I have allowed Gladys to have a relationship with our son altogether . I haven't mention any of this to Gladys , but I'm sure she would be heartbroken. She truly loves our son and he loves her . What should I do ?
Caught Between Two MILs
Dear  Caught  Between two  MILs ,
Shame on your mother-in-law  for being  so  jealous and bitter  that she would interfere in your child rearing decisions and prevent your son and grandson from  having a loving relationship  with Gladys .  In all honesty, it is none of her concern. 
If your husband has no logical objections to the arrangements you have made for your baby's care, then I hope he has the gumption  to tell his mother that  her input is always respected, but these are not her decisions to make. 
He, or you should also be very honest with her and say that it's time she put her hostility away and accepted Gladys as a family member who is important to you and to your son. Gladys is not going to go away and your MIL's bitterness is only hurting herself and damaging her relationship with the family.
Enough already .

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Nazi Gold Ghost Train 'Found In Poland

Mystery of the 'Werewolf' unit's lost horde: How a Nazi ghost train packed with treasures and a gold bar found in a lake at Hitler's hideaway are shining a spotlight on the race to find $30 BILLION fortune hidden by the Third Reich.

Nazi Gold Ghost Train 'Found In Poland'
  Workers inspect gold bars taken from Jews by the Nazi's and stashed in German Salt Mines

The hunters claim they have uncovered the train, packed with guns and gems, that became the stuff of local legend as the Nazis hid their treasures from the advancing Soviet Red Army. Legend has it that the Germans hid their treasures as insurance policies to help fleeing war criminals escape and set up new lives at the end of the Second World War.
The train, rumoured to have vanished along with its cargo of gold, gems and guns in Poland at the end of World War Two may, indeed, have been found, according to reliable sources. Local folklore has it that the armoured train entered a tunnel near a cliff-top mediaeval castle near the southwestern city of Walbrzych as the Red Army approached in 1945 and never came out. The tunnel was later closed and its location forgotten.
But now a German and a Polish man claim to have found the train and are seeking 10% of the value of the haul. A law firm representing the pair has contacted the local authority saying they will reveal its location if they receive a share.
Marika Tokarska, an official at Walbrzych district council, said: "Lawyers, the army, the police and the fire brigade are dealing with this.
"The area has never been excavated before and we don't know what we might find."
Local media report the train was loaded with treasure from the then eastern German city of Breslau, now called Wroclaw and part of Poland. Radio Wroclaw said the 150m (495ft) long train was carrying guns, "industrial equipment", gems and other precious cargo.
Another media report said the train belonged to the German army.
Trains were used by the Nazi regime to transport looted valuables back to Berlin in the face of the allied forces' advance 70 years ago

Added to the intrigue is the recent find of a £12,000 gold bar in a lake near Hitler's mountain hideaway in Berchtesgaden, high up in the Bavarian mountains. The ingot in question was not from the Nazi era, but that matters little to the fortune hunters who can now access state-of-the-art technology in their quest for the billions of dollars worth of art, gold and jewelry the regime's henchmen secreted away in the dying days of the war.
Some of it was meant to finance the escape routes of war criminals: other caches were intended to fund 'Werewolf' resistance units intended to carry out guerilla warfare against the occupying Allies until a new Fourth Reich could rise again.
Now unfavorable bank interest rates combined with websites stoking fantasies of striking it rich have set many 'Teutonic Indiana von Jones' upon the quest of finding a chunk of the estimated $30 billion-worth of missing treasure.

 The gold bar (pictured) was discovered near the former home of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler which is now a popular tourist destination near Berchtesgaden, in the Bavarian mountains - on the border with Austria

 This crate of gold wedding bands which the Nazis stole from the Jews was discovered by United States troops in 1945, but up to £20billion-worth of 'Nazi treasure' is still out there somewhere

Loot: A United States soldier inspects priceless treasure which the Nazis stole from Jews and stashed in the Heilbron Salt Mines, Germany (pictured on May 3, 1945)
Bounty: Around 9,280 special S.S silver rings were stashed in a secret cave in the hills near Wewelsburg Castle (pictured)

Further east, in what was the former German Democrat Republic, the Jonas Valley is the most dangerous of the hunting grounds and said to have it all: conspiracy theorists merely have to fill in their own fantasy. Adolf Hitler's atom bomb, the Amber Room stolen from a Czarist palace in the campaign against Russia, numerous lost art masterpieces and tonnes of Reichsbank gold - all are rumoured to reside in the miles of underground tunnels and bunkers carved out of the rock by slave labourers.
The centre of the Jonas Valley is at Ohrdruf and was the site of the S-III Fuhrer headquarters. It was intended to be the Alamo of the Third Reich leadership. Americans liberated it and US authorities have since classified all 1945 documents relating to Ohrdruf for a minimum of 100 years.
'Like no other place in Germany this wild canyon has ignited the fantasies of an international league of conspiracy theorists and treasure hunters, ' wrote Der Spiegel, Germany's top news magazine.
Both above and below ground, the area is littered with shells and bombs big enough to destroy a city block - relics of the war and the army of former East Germany who used the site as a bombing range for four decades.
At weekends authorities play cat-and-mouse with the treasure hunters who enter the sealed-off area illegally in ones and twos - and sometimes in mini-bus groups - armed with metal detectors and a belief in the stories.
Fortune hunter Martin Stade, author of 'Amber Rooms In Thuringia And Other Hollow Spaces,' likes to guide treasure seekers through the Jonas Valley.

Hidden away: Adolf Hitler's 'atom bomb' and numerous masterpieces are rumoured to be hidden underneath a vast system of underground tunnels and bunkers (pictured) in the Jonas Valley
 underneath a vast system of underground tunnels and bunkers (pictured) in the Jonas Valley

Vanished: The opulent 'Amber Room' stolen from a Russian Palace and tonnes of gold is also thought to be hidden somewhere underneath the underground tunnels (pictured) in the Jonas Valley

Stade believes that Hitler had UFO like flying saucers developed in bunkers at the site. He claims to have divined 174 of these objects beneath the ground, any one of which found intact would be worth millions...should they exist.
Just 65 miles north of Berlin is the Holy Grail for many Nazi treasure seekers - the ruins of the former art-filled summer home of oversized wartime air force chief and deputy Fuehrer Hermann Goering.
Goering, the greatest art thief in history ordered his huge looted collection to be moved from the house called Carinhall as the Red Army closed in during April 1945.Then the estate was dynamited.  Hunting for the Reichmarshall's treasure is a hobby that has grown up since German reunification.
During the Cold War the site of Carinhall was sealed off, weeds and wildlife left to reclaim the bunkers and cellars which Goering's explosives did not destroy.
Almost routinely, bits of old porcelain plates and bowls bearing the Luftwaffe crest are found in the ruins – and three statues were once lifted from the Dollnsee Lake that Carinhall overlooked. The Schatzsucher website is one among many that continues to churn the interest in the site of Carinhall.
But while numerous, intent men waving metal detectors can be seen most weekends treading gingerly through its wasteland, no-one has turned up the missing Rembrandts or Vermeers they convince themselves were left behind.
Hundreds of miles sourth, across the border in Austria, Lake Toplitz has an enduring allure for the bounty hunters. Situated in a dense mountain forest high up in the Austrian Alps, Toplitz has seen its fair share of death over the years.

Gold mine: Just 65 miles north of Berlin, treasure hunters also search the ruins of the once-art-filled summer home of wartime air force chief and deputy Fuehrer Hermann Goering (in white)

Escape: Goering ordered his huge looted collection to be moved from the house called Carinhall (pictured) as the Red Army closed in during April 1945
Goering ordered his huge looted collection to be moved from the house called Carinhall (pictured) as the Red Army closed in during April 1945

Preserved: Carinhall was sealed off during the Cold War, during which time the weeds and wildlife reclaimed the bunkers and cellars (pictured) which Goering's explosives did not destroy
Carinhall was sealed off during the Cold War, during which time the weeds and wildlife reclaimed the bunkers and cellars (pictured) which Goering's explosives did not destroy

Conspiracy: On the border in Austria, many have died searching for the rumoured £3billion-worth of gold dumped in Lake Toplitz (pictured)
Conspiracy: On the border in Austria, many have died searching for the rumoured £3billion-worth of gold dumped in Lake Toplitz (pictured)

The drowned victims were seeking £3billion-worth of Reichsbank gold said to have been dumped into the water by the S.S. as the war came to its close.
All that has been found so far are cases containing millions of pounds-worth of counterfeit British pound notes; Hitler once planned to use them to try to destroy the UK economy.
Back in Bavaria, Lake Chiemsee has drawn the aquatic fortune seekers ever since a Nazi-themed solid-gold cauldron worth over $600,000 was found there in 2001.
Weighing over 20lbs, experts believe the cauldron - adorned with a relief of mythical Celtic and Indo-Germanic figures - was probably made by a goldsmith on the orders of S.S. chief Himmler. But since its find, returning divers have found nothing of value.
Probably the greatest single prize of all remains the Amber Room of the Czars. Drilling began earlier this year beneath the streets of the old industrial city of Wuppertal in a bid to find it.
The Amber Room - valued at around $500 million in today's money - was looted from the palace of Peter the Great in Soviet Russia by invading Nazi troops in 1941. It is without doubt the single greatest piece of missing stolen art from WW2 never to be found and has captivated treasure hunters ever since it was first plundered.
The room, consisting of panels containing six tonnes of amber resin, took ten years to complete. Peter the Great received the room as a gift from the King of Prussia in 1716 and brought it to his new capital, St. Petersburg. The 16-feet of jigsaw-puzzle style panels were constructed of more than 100,000 perfectly fitted pieces of amber. In 1755 it was moved to the Summer Palace at Tsarkoe Selo, 17 miles south of the Imperial Russian capital.

Treasure: The greatest single prize of all remains the Amber Room (pictured) of the Czars which was looted by the Germans during the Second World War

Priceless: The Amber Room (pictured in 1930), consisting of panels containing six tonnes of amber resin, took ten years to complete

Beacon: Lake Chiemsee has drawn the aquatic fortune seekers ever since a Nazi-themed solid-gold cauldron (pictured) worth over £300,000 was found there in 2001

In 1941, the approaching Nazi army surrounded the city, then known by its Soviet name of Leningrad. Tsarkoe Selo was one of the outlying areas occupied by the Germans. They packed the amber panels in 27 crates and shipped them to Germany, where they vanished.
Some say they were destroyed by Soviet artillery fire on the East Prussian city of Koenigsberg, others that they were dumped into an Alpine lake by S.S. men.
But Karl-Heinz Kleine, 68, and his bowling club pals, say they have proof it was entombed by the Nazis beneath the streets of Wuppertal.
The city is riddled with subterranean bunkers and tunnels dug by the Nazis. It is here, said Kleine, that he has received information that the crates arrived from Koenigsberg early in 1945 to be hidden.
He said: 'Erich Koch, the Nazi gauleiter of East Prussia who died in a Polish prison in 1986, came from Wuppertal. As the Red Army closed in on Koenigsberg, he ordered the treasure to be packed up and brought back to his hometown.
'We have studied records and spoken to people from the time. He did not want to leave the world's greatest treasure in a region with an unknown political future; rather he brought it to a place he knew where he had a good chance of accessing it in the future. In his own backyard.'
The local authority have given Karl-Heinz and his four friends permission to dig in the Nazi structures and a local building firm has loaned them some heavy drilling equipment.
'I can't reveal who our sources are, but we are not doing this for fun,' he added, 'We will find the Amber Room here.'

Plotting: All that has been found so far in Lake Toplitz is cases containing millions of pounds-worth of counterfeit British pound notes - Hitler (second from right) once planned to use them to try to destroy the UK economy

Others have been just as certain in the past. The Maigret author Georges Simenon founded the Amber Room Club after WW2 to track it down once and for all. Everyone had a different theory of what might have befallen the work
In 2006 an American team spent 14 million dollars diving into Lake Toplitz to try to find it. Norman Scott, the founder of Global Explorations, said he had a witness who he says specifically counted 27 crates going to the waters of the lake in April 1945, one month before the capitulation of Nazi Germany.
Paperwork from the RHSA - the Reich Main Security Office of the SS in wartime - shows that the Amber Room was packed into precisely 27 crates before it was taken away by the Germans from Russia.
The team also say the Cyrillic lettering on the remains of a wooden crate they found, bearing the words 'fragile' and numbered could mean it once contained a piece of the Amber Room jigsaw.
In 2011 a book published in Germany claimed the room lies hidden in old mine workings in a forest in east Germany.
'The Puzzle of Poppen Wood' by Mario Ulbrich unleashed a fresh wave of treasure hunters who arrived at weekends with shovels, metals detectors and vast reserves of optimism to scour for the artwork.
Ulbrich interviewed foresters, policemen, miners and old Nazis for his work which chronicles two decades of largely unreported quarrying in the wood near Zwickau.

Monsters: Auerswalde, near Chemnitz, was the place where Hitler built the two biggest guns in history - Dora and Gustav
Auerswalde, near Chemnitz, was the place where Hitler built the two biggest guns in history - Dora and Gustav

Heavy weapons: Dora and Gustav - both mighty railway mounted monsters - were capable of hurling shells weighing tonnes
Auerswalde was the place where Hitler built the two biggest guns in history - Dora and Gustav - both mighty railway mounted monsters capable of hurling shells weighing tonness.
As he probed into the history of the cannon he discovered plans for secret underground workings. Then he found details of a clandestine shipment from the city of Koenigsberg, last known storage place of the Amber Room before it fell to the Red Army.
Prussian count Sommes Laubach, the Germans' 'art protection officer' and holder of a degree in art history, supervised the room's transport to Koenigsberg Castle from the Soviet Union. In January 1945, after air raids and a savage ground assault on the city, the room was lost.
Gluba found documents about an air raid on the marshalling yards of Breslau - then German, now the Polish city of Wroclaw - on 4 February 1945.
The army report stated that 40 waggons from Koneigsberg, which had fallen days earlier to the Red Army, were undamaged in the attack and were moving down to Auerswalde 'under conditions of the greatest secrecy.'
Gunter Richter, now 80, is an Auerswalde resident who told Glube that, as a child, he remembered a massive shelter built for munitions works employees that he went into as a boy, in the Muna Forest outside the town. 
It vanished off of maps after the war but in March 2011 he and Gluba managed to find a ventilation shaft that leads down into a subterranean structure they believe is the old shelter.
They, and others, have still not managed to access it.
If the 'Ghost Train' has really been found, it will set off a gold fever frenzy, the like of which, staid old Europe has never seen. Are such treasures really out there? I believe so. Nazis were very orderly and meticulously recorded everything they did. They documented the size weight and number of every item they stole. It was this enormous body of recorded evidence of their crimes and inhumanity  which proved to be their downfall and condemned them in the eyes of the world. Much of the documented stolen art and treasure has not been found and it is hardly likely that the Nazis would destroy it.
Personally I think treasure hunters should look for some of the missing loot in South America.

Ask Maxy

Dear Maxy,I met a woman at a conference I attended and learned that she had years of experience in the business I just got involved in . Once I learned that , I basically stalked her . Every time we saw each other , I asked her as many questions as I could so that I could learn from her . I feel like I may have turned her off but I didn't want her to leave without gaining wisdom from her . I really do hope that we can stay in touch . How can I reach out to her to keep the conversation going ?
Wannabe , Miami
Dear Wannabe ,
Send this woman a thank-you-note , telling her how grateful you are to have met her . Apologize  for seeming a bit pushy ... admit that you were just excited to meet someone in your field . Ask her if she would be willing  to mentor you . Be specific in your request . Ask if she would be willing to talk to you about business and answer questions at arranged times during the year . Ask if she would be willing to give you advice if you come upon a professional stumbling block . Thank her in advance for considering your request . Then back off until you hear from her .

Dear Maxy , 
I went to a business conference that was focused around women . I had a great time and made a lot of good connections . I also noticed that several of the women attendees brought their husbands . The men didn't participate in the day-time activities , but I often saw them at night in the hotel restaurant or walking around on the property . I didn't know that was an option . I bet my husband would have enjoyed being at a resort location if we could just hang out together at night . How can I make this happen at my next conference ? Don't get me wrong ---I don't feel like I missed out on anything . There were activites for attendees every night, so I was busy , but my husband and I haven't had a vacation in a long time . Sneaking in a mini-vacay .
Splitting the Difference
Dear Splitting the Difference,
It is not unusual for families to tag along during professional conferences in the summer . Sometimes it can be just a spouse . Other times , spouses and children come to these events and hang out with the conference attendee parent during off-hours . Depending on the nature of the conference, sometimes there are family activities built into the agenda so the family members are not peripheral to the event .
In the future , check with the conference organizers to get their view on bringing spouses .

Dear Maxy ,
I chose to go to a university in another state . The tuition is very expensive and recently my family has hit a rough financial patch . My parents originally gave me their blessing to leave the state and my mom has planned to pretend we live in Florida to give me in-state tuition .
My older sister is calling me selfish for allowing my mom to go through with this plan because it is illegal . I reminded my sister that our mother told me I could got to the school , so our parents will figure out the financial aspect . I feel bad being the reason my mother is breaking the law , but she told me I could go . What should I do ? 
Small-Town Budget Biloxi , Mississippi
Dear Small-Town Budget ,
As you might imagine , I cannot and definitely will not  suggest that you or your mother  break the law . I can tell you what some people have done  that is effective and not illegal . If your mother knows someone in the neighboring state  who would let her stay there, at least part-time , so that she legitimately has an address  in that state , do that . Perhaps your mom can spend weekends there or visit once a week or so . I know a family who actually moved to a different state and lived with their friends for four years  so their child could go to school for a dramatic discount . You can figure this out without breaking the law . And you'll feel much better about it.

Dear Maxy ,
Over the years , I have often visited a beach community and had a great time with the people there . I haven't been there in awhile , though, because of work and health issues . I have been invited to come to come for the weekend soon , and I am a little nervous . I have gained a lot of weight and really don't feel attractive . I am afraid that people will look at me on the beach in a swimsuit and make comments under their breath . I am not sure how I will be able to handle that if it happens . I already feel uncomfortable about where I am . Should I stay home ?
Beached Whale
Dear Beached Whale,
While you are especially self-conscious about your changing body, there is a high probability that there will be every size, shape and configuration of bodies on the beach when you visit  this summer. Most women wish their bodies were different (honestly ). But you will notice they are out there swimming and sun-bathing, regardless.
Instead of  bemoaning your state, consider yourself part of a community of people who want to share the sunshine and the fun, rather than scrutinize bodies . 
Resist the temptation to judge others or worry about being judged. Focus instead on the good time you are having .

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Things I learned on my vacation.... Show and tell

20 - A fear of Dolphins
 I learned to be scared of dolphins for the rest of my life

17 - Photobomb
 I learned there are photo bombs....and then there are photo bombs

16 - He Wants to Suck Your Bank Account
I learned Mickey Mouse is a pedophile.....Oh Nooooo!!

15 - To the Mothership
I learned aliens have landed in New York and the Statue of Liberty is their leader

19 - A Pain in the Butt
I learned the Leaning Tower of  Pisa cannot be shoved up some guy's ass

18 - Ocean Surprise
 I learned that earthquakes do not cause tsunamis

I learned that some photos do not belong in the family album

I learned that Daddy gets real tired on Mom's souvenir shopping trips

I learned something about walruses I never wanted to know

I learned daddy loses his fashion sense on holiday

I learned you should check the background before you take a family photo

I learned that it is actually possible to get sick to death of Disney World

awkward family vacations funny 2 Really awkward family summer vacation shots (34 Photos)
I learned that some of Daddy's ideas really suck

awkward family vacations funny 4 Really awkward family summer vacation shots (34 Photos)
I learned if Daddy has a few beers with lunch, he can't remember where he left the baby

awkward family vacations funny 3 Really awkward family summer vacation shots (34 Photos)
I learned that llamas like to eat my baby brother

awkward family vacations funny 29 Really awkward family summer vacation shots (34 Photos)
 I learned that if your lederhosen is too small, it will rub your *** raw

On the other hand, tie and dye is a beautiful thing

 I learned that sometimes your elephant ride can go south

 I learned that a cold beer really goes down well at the beach

 I learned that grandpa poops his pants if you put him on a zip line

I learned that mommy and Daddy have a really weird sense of humor

 I learned that cousin Willie will buy anything on vacay

I learned never to let Uncle Billy Bob touch me

I learned Nana's invisibility cloak does not work

I learned that people get really tense if you bury your brother and don't tell them where

I learned you should get Nana her own room at the hotel

I learned that those handles on the inner tube actually have a purpose

 I learned there really are sea monsters and they look a lot like cousin Willie

I learned you should never let Uncle Billy Bob near your little sister either

I learned Aunt Winnie could not swim. Unfortunately, it was too late to save her

Grandpa learned you can be in the wrong place at exactly the right time

 I learned that my  sister Julie has weird taste in boyfriends

I learned Nana doesn't shower much on vacation

awkward family vacations funny 30 Really awkward family summer vacation shots (34 Photos)
 I learned that when you get bored and run out of things to do on your vacay,
you can take a refreshing ride over the falls

In conclusion...It was a real learning experience. But I think I'll go to camp next year

I had a lot of fun putting this post together