Friday, January 30, 2009

24 Things About To Become Extinct In America

24. Yellow Pages This year will be pivotal for the global Yellow Pages industry. Much like newspapers, print Yellow Pages will continue to bleed dollars to their various digital counterparts, from Internet Yellow Pages (IYPs), to local search engines and combination search/listing services like Reach Local and Yodle Factors like an acceleration of the print ‘fade rate’ and the looming recession will contribute to the onslaught. One research firm predicts the fall off in usage of newspapers and print. Yellow Pages could even reach 10% this year — much higher than the 2%-3% fade rate seen in past years.

23. Classified Ads The Internet has made so many things obsolete that newspaper classified ads might sound like just another trivial item on a long list. But this is one of those harbingers of the future that could signal the end of civilization as we know it. The argument is that if newspaper classifieds are replaced by free online listings at sites like Craigslist.org and Google Base, then=2 0newspapers are not far behind them.

22. Movie Rental Stores While Netflix is looking up at the moment, Blockbuster keeps closing store locations by the hundreds. It still has about 6,000 left across the world, but those keep dwindling and the stock is down considerably in 2008, especially since the company gave up a quest of Circuit City . Movie Gallery, which owned the Hollywood Video brand, closed up shop earlier this year. Countless small video chains and mom-and-pop stores have given up the ghost already.

21. Dial-up Internet Access Dial-up connections have fallen from 40% in 2001 to 10% in 2008. The combination of an infrastructure to accommodate affordable high speed Internet connections and the disappearing home phone have all but pounded the final nail in the coffin of dial-up Internet access.

20. Phone Landlines According to a survey from the National Center for Health Statistics, at the end of 2007, nearly one in six homes was cell-only and, of those homes that had landlines, one in eight only received calls on their cells.

19. Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs Maryland ’s icon, the blue crab, has been fading away in Chesapeake Bay. Last year Maryland saw the lowest harvest (22 million pounds) since 1945. Just four decades ago the bay produced 96 million pounds. Th e population is down 70% since 1990, when they first did a formal count. There are only about 120 million crabs in the bay and they think they need 200 million for a sustainable population. Overfishing, pollution, invasive species and global warming get the blame.

18. VCRs For the better part of three decades, the VCR was a best-seller and staple in every American household until being completely decimated by the DVD, and now the Digital Video Recorder (DVR). In fact, the only remnants of the VHS age at your local Wal-Mart or Radio Shack are blank VHS tapes these days. Pre-recorded VHS tapes are largely gone and VHS decks are practically nowhere to be found. They served us so well.

17. Ash Trees In the late 1990s, a pretty, irridescent green species of beetle, now known as the emerald ash borer, hitched a ride to North America with ash wood products imported from eastern Asia . In less than a decade, its larvae have killed millions of trees in the midwest, and continue to spread. They’ve killed more than 30 million ash trees in southeastern Michigan alone, with tens of millions more lost in Ohio and Indiana . More than 7.5 billion ash trees are currently at risk.

16. Ham Radio Amateur radio operators enjoy personal (and often worldwide) wireless communications with each other and are able to support their communities with emergency and disaster communi cations if necessary, while increasing their personal knowledge of electronics and radio theory. However, proliferation of the Internet and its popularity among youth has caused the decline of amateur radio. In the past five years alone, the number of people holding active ham radio licenses has dropped by 50,000, even though Morse Code is no longer a requirement.

15. The Swimming Hole Thanks to our litigious society, swimming holes are becoming a thing of the past. ‘20/20′ reports that swimming hole owners, like Robert Every in High Falls, N.Y., are shutting them down out of worry that if someone gets hurt they’ll sue. And that’s exactly what happened in Seattle . The city of Bellingham was sued by Katie Hofstetter who was paralyzed in a fall at a popular swimming hole in Whatcom Falls Park . As injuries occur and lawsuits follow, expect more swimming holes to post ‘Keep out!’ signs.

14. Answering Machines The increasing disappearance of answering machines is directly tied to No 20 our list — the decline of landlines. According to USA Today, the number of homes that only use cell phones jumped 159% between 2004 and 2007. It has been particularly bad in New York ; since 2000, landline usage has dropped 55% It’s logical that as cell phones rise, many of them replacing traditional landlines, that there will be fewer answering machines.

13. Cameras That Use Film It doesn’t require a statistician to prove the rapid disappearance of the film camera in America . Just look to companies like Nikon, the professional’s choice for quality camera equipment. In 2006, it announced that it would stop making film cameras, pointing to the shrinking market — only 3% of its sales in 2005, compared to 75% of sales from digital cameras and equipment.

12. Incandescent Bulbs Before a few years ago, the standard 60-watt (or, yikes, 100-watt) bulb was the mainstay of every U.S. home. With the green movement and all-things-sustainable-energy crowd, the Compact Fluorescent Lightbulb (CFL) is largely replacing the older, Edison-era incandescent bulb. The EPA reports that 2007 sales for Energy Star CFLs nearly doubled from 2006, and these sales accounted for approximately 20 percent of the U.S. light bulb market. And according to USA Today, a new energy bill plans to phase out incandescent bulbs in the next four to 12 years.

11. Stand-Alone Bowling Alleys BowlingBalls.US claims there are still 60 million Americans who bowl at least once a year, but many are not bowling in stand-alone bowling alleys. Today most new bowling alleys are part of facilities for all types or recreation includ ing laser tag, go-karts, bumper cars, video game arcades, climbing walls and glow miniature golf. Bowling lanes also have been added to many non-traditional venues such as adult communities, hotels and resorts, and gambling casinos.

10. The Milkman According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in 1950, over half of the milk delivered was to the home in quart bottles, by 1963, it was about a third and by 2001, it represented only 0.4% percent. Nowadays most milk is sold through supermarkets in gallon jugs. The steady decline in home-delivered milk is blamed, of course, on the rise of the supermarket, better home refrigeration and longer-lasting milk. Although some milkmen still make the rounds in pockets of the U.S , they are certainly a dying breed.

9 Hand-Written Letters In 2006, the Radicati Group estimated that, worldwide, 183 billion e-mails were sent each day. Two million each second. By November of 2007, an estimated 3.3 billion Earthlings owned cell phones, and 80% of the world’s population had access to cell phone coverage. In 2004, half-a-trillion text messages were sent, and the number has no doubt increased exponentially since then. So where amongst this gorge of gabble is there room for the elegant, polite hand-written letter?

8. Wild Horses It is estimated that 100 years ago, as many as two million horses were roaming free within the United States . In 2001, National Geographic News estimated that the wild horse population had decreased to about 50,000 head. Currently, the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory board states that there are 32,000 free roaming horses in ten Western states, with half of them residing in Nevada . The Bureau of Land Management is seeking to reduce the total number of free range horses to 27,000, possibly by selective euthanasia.

7. Personal Checks According to an American Bankers Assoc. report, a net 23% of consumers plan to decrease their use of checks over the next two years, while a net 14% plan to increase their use of PIN debit. Bill payment remains the last stronghold of paper-based payments — for the time being. Checks continue to be the most commonly used bill payment method, with 71% of consumers paying at least one recurring bill per month by writing a check. However, on a bill-by-bill basis, checks account for only 49% of consumers’ recurring bill payments (down from 72% in 2001 and 60% in 2003).

6. Drive-in Theaters During the peak in 1958, there were more than 4,000 drive-in theaters in this country, but in 2007 only 405 drive-ins were still operating. Exactly zero new drive-ins have been built since 2005. Only one reopened in 2005 and five reopened in 2006, so there isn’t much of a movement toward reviving the closed ones.

5. Mumps & Measles Despite what’s been in the news lately, the measles and mumps actually, truly are disappearing from the United States . In 1964, 212,000 cases of mumps were reported in the U.S. By 1983, this figure had dropped to 3,000, thanks to a vigorous vaccination program. Prior to the introduction of the measles vaccine, approximately half a million cases of measles were reported in the U.S. annually, resulting in 450 deaths. In 2005, only 66 cases were recorded.

4. Honey Bees Perhaps nothing on our list of disappearing America is so dire; plummeting so enormously; and so necessary to the survival of our food supply as the honey bee. Very scary. ‘Colony Collapse Disorder,’ or CCD, has spread throughout the U.S and Europe over the past few years, wiping out 50% to 90% of the c olonies of many beekeepers — and along with it, their livelihood

3. News Magazines and TV News While the TV evening newscasts haven’t gone anywhere over the last several decades, their audiences have. In 1984, in a story about the diminishing returns of the evening news, the New York Times reported that all three network evening-news programs combined had only 40.9 million viewers. Fast forward to 2008, and what they have today is half that.

2. Analog TV According to the Consumer Electronics Association, 85% of homes in the U.S. get their television programming20through cable or satellite providers. For the remaining 15% — or 13 million individuals — who are using rabbit ears or a large outdoor antenna to get their local stations, change is in the air. If you are one of these people you’l l need to get a new TV or a converter box in order to get the new stations which will only be broadcast in digital.

1. The Family Farm Since the 1930s, the number of family farms has been declining rapidly. According to the USDA, 5.3 million farms dotted the nation in 1950, but this number had declined to 2.1 million by the 2003 farm census (data from the 2007 census hasn’t yet been published). Ninety-one percent of the U.S.farms are small family farms.

Via

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Recipe R&R - Real Mom Kitchen's Creamy Italian Chicken

Big Daddy came in from work today and said, "What are we rating tonight?" Ha! I told him it's Real Mom Kitchen's Creamy Italian Chicken.

I love to cook in the crock pot. Most nights my dinner is cold after getting Maddie's dinner all cut up and ready to eat. But when I cook with the crock pot, I get to eat at the same time they do.

I served this over elbow macaroni because that's all the pasta I had. I think it would be great over rice too, but I didn't have enough of that either.

Kelly and I both would give this an 8 on a scale of 1-10. It was sooooo good.

What amazes me is this:


Maddie hardly ever eats what I cook. Every time I cook, I make her a bowl and see what her reaction is after she takes a bite. I can tell if she's just pulling my leg about really liking it or not. When she doesn't like something I make, which is 99.9995% of the time, I usually make her something else to eat that I know she likes.

She loved this - ate the whole bowl.

Mammograms

I have been sort of freaking out since January 20th.

Why? Because I had a screening mammogram on the 19th and the Breast Center called me on the 20th to tell me they found something questionable in my right breast. (It's so hard for me to say "breast" so I'll just stick with boob.)


They told me I needed to come back in for a diagnostic mammogram and also a sonogram. I have been scared ever since. My grandmother had breast cancer in 1970. She had a radical mastectomy.

I made the appointment for the 28th (which was the soonest they could get me in). The 28th was yesterday - everything was closed due to the ice storm we had. Great! I called this morning hoping they would work me in or something, and I can't get in until February 10th. I don't know if my nerves can hold out that long and hopefully my right boob won't fall off before then.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Recipe R&R - Mommy's Kitchen Frozen Burrito Casserole

Tonight I made Mommy's Kitchen Frozen Burrito Casserole.

It was super easy to make. Open a few cans of stuff, plop in some thawed frozen burritos, throw it all together and top with some cheese and bake.

This stuff was good.

Big Daddy and I both give it an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Wordless Wednesday - Ice Angel



It's icy here in North Texas. Maddie tried her best to make an ice angel, but it just wouldn't work.

For more Wordless Wednesday, go here.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Recipe R&R - Southern Plate's One-Dish Pork Chops

Why didn't I kick this thing off with Southern Plate's Cheesy Chicken & Corn Casserole or Black Eyed Peas & Hoppin John or any other of the tons of great recipes she has on her site?

I said I was going to be honest, right? Well, here it goes - and Christy, please don't hate me for this because I absolutely adore your recipes and your blog. I even bought the Southern Plate Cookbook as a present for my mother-in-law's birthday.

Southern Plate's One-Dish Pork Chops

I usually broil my pork chops. I like the crispiness of them when they're broiled. That being said, these turned out kind of water-logged and soggy which is to be expected in a recipe like this. I cooked this for 45 minutes at 350 and it still came out runny and not all of the rice was cooked. There was just something about it that I can't quite put my finger on that I didn't like very well. I think it must have been the rice.

Big Daddy gave this recipe a 5 on a scale of 1-10. I think I would give it a 4. Please don't hate me, Christy.

Recipe R&R - Foodislove's Pepperoni Puff Balls

I made these yesterday to take to a reception after my husband's uncle's memorial service. Walked out of the house and left them sitting on the dining room table - real smart!

They're Foodislove's Pepperoni Puff Balls.

First of all, the recipe doesn't specify the size of package for the sliced pepperoni. It just calls for a package of sliced pepperoni. Since I thought there was only one size package of pepperoni (6 oz.), that's what I used. I think that was a huge mistake. Should have used a lot less.

Also, the recipe says to take the crescent rolls, roll each triangle out and then cut it into three smaller triangles. Well, since I failed geometry in high school, I had a hard time doing this (doh!). So I wound up cutting each triangle in what appeared to me to be half. Foodislove even says when she's lazy, she'll cut them in half instead of thirds.

I was worried that I'd made them too big, that they would turn out ugly after I baked them because I practically mauled them when I cut the dough up, but they didn't at all.

I think if you cut down the amount of pepperoni that I used- maybe use 3 oz. of pepperoni and just cut the crescent rolls in half instead of thirds, you'll have a great appetizer.

Recipe R&R - Noble Pig's Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Dip

I know I said I'd start my recipe rating and review (I've got to come up with a catchier name - if you think of one, let me know) tonight, but I thought I might tell you about some appetizers I've made recently.

I made Noble Pig's Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Dip.

I made this for our family get-together/celebration of Kelly's 40th birthday this past Saturday.

YUMMY! This stuff was good. Kelly said it was a little sweet. That could be because of the brand of pizza sauce I used, which was Ragu. The only other brand my Walmart carries is the Walmart brand, so I might try that next time. This stuff was still delicious!

It calls for an 8 oz. package of refrigerated bread sticks. But you will need more than that. Also, I suggest tearing the bread sticks into bite-size pieces because you don't want any double-dippers, you know what I'm saying?

Food Blogs

I'm really, really, really - no, for real, - I'm really getting into all these food blogs. Ever since I started planning our menus every week, I've been searching for easy, scrumptious recipes.

I've tried a ton already - some were great, some were not so great.

I always make my husband rate each one on a scale of 1 to 10. He never wants to hurt my feelings. But I always inform him, if you don't tell me what you think about it, I will make it every week, so you better tell me the truth.

I think it might be helpful for some people if I post what I make each day (if I can remember to do it). And I'll post the recipe, where I got it from, and I'll let you know the results. I'll even posts some pics.

I have to warn you though that I have the most non-fancy kitchen, probably the oldest stove known to mankind, the ugliest dishes and cookware available. But, hey, I'm just a regular person. I'm no Chef Tell.

I will be honest though. I'm like the world's worst at trying not to hurt people's feelings though, so it will be hard for me to say something like, That was the worst meal ever! But I will do it, for everyone else's sake.

So stay tuned. I'll start it tonight and I'll be making Southern Plate's One-Dish Pork Chops.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Month of Giveaways Over @ Southern Plate


Starting in February, Christy is having a month of giveaways over on Southern Plate - over $500 worth of prizes.

Go check it out.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Heaven

I love sayings. I saw this over on Emmer's Ideas.

I hope my father-in-law sees this. One of his brothers passed away last week.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Happy 40th Birthday, Kelly!

Just remember what Arthur Schopenhauer said: The first forty years of life give us the text: the next thirty supply the commentary.

And always remember we love you, no matter how old you are!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Story People - Believing My Father

I subscribe to the story of the day from Story People. Here's today's story of the day. It's called Believing My Father.

"I used to believe my father about everything but then I had children myself & now I see how much stuff you make up just to keep yourself from going crazy."

Go here for more.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Things I Love Thursday - Lunchables


Call me crazy, but Maddie absolutely loves these things. The turkey and cheddar is her favorite. My favorite is all of them because they're so quick and easy. Half of the food I cook (and I cook every single night), she will not touch. Who am I kidding when I say half? It's more like 99.99999% of the food I cook she will not touch. So my solution is a Lunchable.

I lay the crackers out on a paper plate and make them look like a smiley face - put the turkey on top of the crackers and then lay the cheese around the plate to make it look like hair. She loves that.

They usually come with two cookies. I've tried to trick Maddie into thinking they come with one because I usually eat one of them. She grabbed both cookies the other day, handed one to me and said, Here's your cookie, Mama. I was soooo busted.

For more Thing I Love Thursday, go to The Diaper Diaries.