Friday, February 27, 2009

Good News for February 27 (posted by Mary Beth)

The Week in Review - PTA Digest

"This week’s PTA Digest begins with the news of a law enforcement sweep of several cities across our country—a sweep that helped rescue a number of young girls from forced prostitution. We talk about it with Linda Smith of Shared Hope International. Next, in a culture that seems to revel in transience, Justin Taylor calls for the Biblical endurance of the saints. Finally, an enjoyable conversation with two Christians who are jazz musicians. We talk with Deanna Witkowski and John Patitucci about their music making and what is called sacred jazz. I hope you enjoy the PTA Digest. – Greg Wheatley"

Click here to listen to the podcast.

Pure Pork: Change? What Change?

"Back in 2006, when the Democrats took control of the House and the Senate, I praised them on BreakPoint for promising to clean up Congress. And especially for promising to put an end to the corrupt practice of earmarking—that’s when our elected representatives in Congress slip expenditures into the budgeting process without debate."

Read the rest of Chuck Colson's commentary here.

Octopus floods Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

"It's not surprising that with eight arms and inquisitive nature, the two-spotted octopus is pretty handy around its tank at the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. Still, those reporting for work Thursday at the popular beachfront attraction were caught by surprise when they were greeted by water lapping around the kelp forest display, the shark and ray tank and the rocky reef exhibit."

Dip into the story here.

Orchid Shows Brighten Up Winter's Last Gray Days

"Ka-bloom! It's time for the annual round of flower shows that help us forget about winter and start focusing on spring. Here are some of the best flower festivals to get you in the mood for spring greening."

You'll find the information here.

Good News From Mary Feb.27, 2009

Hope Flickers in Nairobi's Slums

Think you're going through tough times? Try living in a Nairobi slum.

Running water and electricity are rare; open sewage trenches are common. Many people use "flying toilets" -- waste-filled plastic bags tossed into alleys or the murky Nairobi River.

Kenyan migrants and African immigrants arrive daily looking for work and a better life. They typically find something far different.

Click here to read the rest of this story.

Dobson resigns as chair of Focus on the Family

Conservative evangelical leader James Dobson resigned as chairman of Focus on the Family but will continue to play a prominent role at the organization he founded more than three decades ago, The Associated Press has learned.

Click here to read the rest of this story.

Squeezing in a conference call between classes

The Dobie Center, a dorm complex at the University of Texas at Austin, is 27 stories tall and boasts a cafeteria, a basketball court, a movie theater, and a pool.

But for students interested in business (at UT, 150 belong to the school’s entrepreneurship club), the Dobie Center is more than a place to live. That’s because 25 years ago, a young resident of the tower decided to make and sell low-cost PCs from stock components. Michael Dell scrounged up $1,000 and turned his room into a mini assembly line, and the rest is history.

Click here to read the rest of this story.

Great Depression Cooking With Clara

How good of a cook is Clara Cannucciari, a 93-year-old great-grandmother and host of her own online cooking show?

She's so good, she claims to have gained weight during the Great Depression, according to her blog.

Click here to read the rest of this story.

'King of the Nerds' Goes Dancing

F. Scott Fitzgerald famously said that there are no second acts in American life. But that doesn't mean you can't try, especially after you've had one of the most famous first acts of your generation.

You may have read the news that Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Computer, has signed on to compete in this season's Dancing With the Stars. The very idea that the man once called "The King of the Nerds" would be out tripping the light fantastic in competition with professional athletes, B-list movie stars and entertainers no doubt drew a derisive chuckle. Or perhaps just a sad shake of the head: What's Woz up to now?

Click here to read the rest of this story.

Friday, February 27, 2009 Good News Stories (Margaret)

Finding genes that make teeth grow all in a row

"Ever wonder why sharks get several rows of teeth and people only get one? Some geneticists did, and their discovery could spur work to help adults one day grow new teeth when their own wear out."

Click here to read more about these findings.

Balls Replace Chairs In Fort Collins Classroom

"You've seen those large exercise balls at the gym but now they're rolling into the classroom, where a Fort Collins teacher is using the balls to improve her students' concentration and posture."

Click here to read more of this story.

Month of potlucks set to highlight hunger

"The pastors were joking around on Facebook about how much Lutherans love potluck dinners.

But the conversation got them thinking about food and the many people around the world who don't have enough.

That's when a Virginia pastor came up with the idea for the month of potlucks project.

The plan is to set a potluck meal for every day in March and find congregations in the U.S. to host them. The potluck will include a program to raise awareness about hunger, and a collection will be taken for the World Hunger fund of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America."

Click here to read more about the potluck project.

Research reveals some of Alzheimer's secrets

"Scientists are unraveling some of the mechanisms behind the plaques in the brain that are a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, offering new leads for drugs to treat the fatal brain-wasting disease.

A team at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston reported on Thursday in the journal Science that amyloid plaques agitate a type of brain cell called an astrocyte needed for normal brain function."

Click here to read more about this research.

Time to Prune, Groom and Clear The Way for Spring

"You may be ready for spring, but is your garden? The final weeks of winter offer the last chance to clear away the remnants of last year's garden before new growth sprouts. "

Click here to read more.