Your Ancient Symbols Card for October 30th is The Dove

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

The Dove

Throughout history the Dove has symbolized peace and innocence in nearly all cultures. Dove’s soft cooing and gentle nature bring a calmness to any situation. The Dove appears where peace has been attained or there is a need to bring events to a peaceful ending. It denotes a time to let lose of grievances and settle conflicts in a way that benefits all parties equally.

As a daily card, Dove suggests the need to put an end to conflict in your present life. The conflict may be yours or may be that of people close to you. Regardless of the parties involved, you have been called upon to bring the discord to an impartial end.

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Oct. 11th is The Dove

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

The Dove

Throughout history the Dove has symbolized peace and innocence in nearly all cultures. Dove’s soft cooing and gentle nature bring a calmness to any situation. The Dove appears where peace has been attained or there is a need to bring events to a peaceful ending. It denotes a time to let lose of grievances and settle conflicts in a way that benefits all parties equally.

As a daily card, Dove suggests the need to put an end to conflict in your present life. The conflict may be yours or may be that of people close to you. Regardless of the parties involved, you have been called upon to bring the discord to an impartial end.

Why women lose interest in sex

By Jennifer Abbasi, LiveScience


Study: The longer a woman is in a relationship, the more her sexual desire decreases. Men reported no such decrease.


New research is demonstrating what many people already knew from experience: Women lose interest in sex over time, while men don’t.

The finding has the potential to help couples, the researchers said. Knowing that many women’s sexual desire diminishes over the course of a relationship could encourage both partners to be more realistic about their sex lives, and could help them weather the changes in desire as they occur.
Sex researchers Sarah Murray and Robin Milhausen, both of the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, asked 170 undergraduate women and men who had been in heterosexual relationships for anywhere from one month to nine years to report on their levels of relationship satisfaction, sexual satisfaction and sexual desire. Desire was scored using an established model called the Female Sexual Function Index, which ranges from 1.2 to 6.0.
The participants reported being generally satisfied with their relationships and sex lives, but women reported lower levels of desire depending on the length of their relationship. “Specifically, for each additional month women in this study were in a relationship with their partner, their sexual desire decreased by 0.02 on the Female Sexual Function Index,” the authors wrote online Jan. 23 in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy.
In fact, relationship duration was a better predictor of sexual desire in women than both relationship and sexual satisfaction. While the 0.02 decrease in female desire was small, it contrasts with male desire, which held steady over time, the researchers said. [6 Scientific Tips for a Happy Relationship]
Evolution of desire
Scientists have disagreed on what happens to desire over the course of a relationship. “Some researchers suggest that both men’s and women’s desire would decrease over time as relationships move from passionate love to compassionate love,” said Murray, the lead study author and a doctoral candidate in human sexuality.
Yet evolutionary theorists predict that male desire should remain perpetually high in order for them to produce many offspring, while female desire should decrease as their attention turns, historically, toward child-rearing.
The new research points toward the latter theory, although longer-duration studies on different groups of people are still needed, Murray said.
Men consistently report higher levels of sexual desire than women. Differences in levels of hormones — testosterone, specifically — are believed to at least partially explain the gender divide.
Hormonal changes that occur as couples move from the passionate early stage to the compassionate later stage into monogamous relationships sometime between six and 30 months may also mediate changes in desire over time. Pharmaceutical companies are currently researching the impact of testosterone on women’s desire, but so far, the results have been inconclusive.
Hormones are only part of the story, Murray told LiveScience. “Although they are one piece of the sexual desire puzzle, focusing too heavily on hormones can remove the contextual factors that play into desire, such as whether or not a woman is in a satisfying, loving relationship, and if she has time to feel relaxed, playful and sexy,” she said.
Keeping the spark alive
The results could help researchers understand why women who seek sex therapy complain of low desire more than any other problem. Differences in levels of desire within couples, known as desire discrepancy, is a growing area of interest for therapists.
“The concept of an absolute level of ‘normal’ or ‘low’ sexual desire is being replaced by the view that low sexual desire is relative to one’s partner’s level of desire,” Murray said. But although desire discrepancy is known to negatively affect overall sexual and relationship satisfaction, very little else is understood about it, such as whether it contributes significantly to infidelity or breakups.
The new research could also help couples manage their relationships over time. In an earlier study, Murray found that women who reported more realistic expectations about what sex would be like in a long-term relationship also had higher levels of desire than those with less realistic expectations. “I think that individuals who expect to maintain the high level of excitement and passion that often exists in the first few months of a new relationship are setting up unrealistic expectations about what is to come and will be more disappointed when the desire and passion take on different forms,” she said.
She added that normalizing the fact that sexual desire may decrease over time may help both sexes to understand that this decrease does not necessarily mean anything is intrinsically wrong with their relationship, and may help couples put more effort into their sexual relationship.
“When an individual has had sex with their partner over the course of many, many years, it takes creativity and openness to keep things fresh and exciting,” Murray said. “Making time to be together and keep one’s sex life as an important part of one’s relationship is very important, and putting in effort and keeping things fun and interesting are crucial components.”
A long-term trend?
The researchers cautioned that longer-term studies of desire that include older couples could show different results. Younger women may report decreased desire as they experience their first relationship move away from the “honeymoon phase,” for example.
They may also not have experienced some of the benefits of longer-term relationships that may increase desire, such as going on romantic vacations, getting engaged, learning more about their sexual likes — and feeling comfortable sharing those likes with their partner.
Murray added that the self-reported nature of the study could have also skewed the results. “It has been theorized that men may be less inclined to admit that they have low desire as this is considered against male gender norms and masculinity,” she said. “Thus, it may be that men are not accurately reporting their level of desire and they may too experience a decrease.” Murray is preparing to study whether men accurately report their levels of desire.
Follow Jen Abbasi on Twitter @jenabbasi. Follow LiveScience for the latest in science news and discoveries on Twitter @livescience and on Facebook.




Precious Pup of the Day for April 15th

Finney, the Dog of the Day
Name: Finney
Age: Ten years old
Gender: Male Breed: Shih Tzu
Home: Ste Anne, Ontario, Canada
Hi there! My name is Finney and I am a Shih Tzu. That means Lion Dog and let me tell you I am as brave any lion but far more important as my ancestors came from the Emperor’s Palace in China!

The first eight years of my life were very sad as I lived in a horrible place called a puppy mill where I was used to breed and never treated well or kindly and had no family to adore me … but then I was rescued and eventually adopted by my foster family who fell in love with me and couldn’t bear to part with me. I am now so happy and love living here with all the other dogs in the house – there is a Bichon called Ben who is my permanent best doggie friend and always at least four other foster fluffs to play with me when I feel like romping. Of course I am the Doggie King of the Castle but I am very kind and protective of them all (even the cat!).

Every night before I go to sleep on my own soft blanket on the big bed, I get to have a really good time and a play with my two teddies and a belly rub from Dad whom I love more than anyone in the world. I am so happy to be here for the rest of my life!

Yes, Finney is a real Dad’s boy and follows my husband everywhere. Finn is a real character and not a day goes by without him doing something to make us both laugh and love him even more. He is loving, sweet and kind to all the dogs he meets and we are very lucky to have him as our furkid!

Rescue dogs (and cats) are the best!

Finney, the Dog of the Day
See more images of Finney!

Precious Pup of the Day for April 14th

Blue, the Dog of the Day
Name: Blue
Age: Seven years old
Gender: Male Breed: German Shepherd, Husky
Golden Retriever
Home: Ontario, Canada
I had always wanted a dog. I had a couple when I was really little but I hardly remember them. One day my parents said that a friend of the family’s dog had a litter of puppies. So we went to check them out. There sure were a lot of puppies and we played with them all and finally the soon-to-be-Blue was chosen! We had to wait a couple of weeks for them to be ready to leave their mother but the day finally came when we could pick up our pup. He is a German Shepherd, Husky, Golden Retriever mix. At first we were going to name him Buddy but it seemed too common. So we named him after his icy-blue eyes. Since then it has been seven years. I remember some good memories like how Blue used to hate going for walks as a puppy until he met another dog who loved going for walks. Now if you say ‘walk’ Blue runs for his leash. I also remember not being able to sleep one night so I had started down the stairs to sit with my parents for a bit. I overheard them talking about getting rid of Blue, I was so upset that I ran back to my bedroom. The next day my Mom told how someone almost broke into our house the night before after they went to bed. Blue barked and growled until my Dad had come down to see what was wrong. When they look in the back yard there was a guy dressed in dark clothing trying to get back over the fence. Who knows if they guy was dangerous or not, either way Blue saved us and he was allowed to stay.

Blue is a big dog, he doesn’t meet many dogs his size and when he does he does he acts all surprised. Sometimes he is afraid of little dogs and will hide behind me but he eventually comes out to say ‘hi’. He thinks he is a lap dog and loves to sleep on my lap. It started when he was a puppy and he just never outgrew it the habit, although he outgrew my lap a long time ago. He is friendly, calm & loyal as well as my best friend. Blue has always been there for me when I was angry or upset and never once has he judged me. He is getting older now and our walks are getting shorter but I am cherishing every moment that I have with him

Dog-gone Doggie of the Day for April 12th

Maya, the Dog of the Day
Name: Maya
Age: Three year old
Gender: Female Breed: German Shepherd
Home: Ontario, Canada
This is my best friend, Maya. Maya is special for many reasons, but mostly because despite her huge size, she still cuddles with my family, friends and myself the way my other dog (a.k.a. her best friend) does, and her best friend is a tiny chihuahua. (Maya doesn’t realize she is 15x his size). Maya is also very silly, and her favorite command (that only I know she does) is “dance with me”. When you ask Maya to dance with you, she will put her paws on your shoulder and literally dance with you (which is quite hilarious given her size).

Maya also enjoys “talking” to the dogs she sees on the television – she will sit smack dab in front of the screen and bark as if she is having a conversation with them. Maya’s favorite game to play is tug-o-war, and she enjoys “kicking” around rubber balls as if she is playing soccer. Maya is extremely photogenic, everyone that meets her ends up taking pictures of her on their phones- she is one beautiful puppy! Maya is very lovable, and lets our chihuahua cuddle right up into her during naps. One last thing… Maya is (in her mind, anyway) a “professional” squirrel tracker – she will sit and stare out the back door for hours fixating on squirrels as they run by. We love her!

Maya, the Dog of the Day
See more images of Maya!

Earth Science Photo of the Day for Dec. 29th

Eugenia Falls and Niagara Escarpment

December 29, 2011

EugeniafallsP8280811 (3)

Photographer: David Wigglesworth
Summary Author: David Wigglesworth; Stu Witmer

The Niagara Escarpment is part of the Michigan Basin, a 440 million year old geological feature that stretches in a huge arc from upstate New York, across Ontario and Michigan to eastern Wisconsin. Eugenia Falls, pictured above, on the Beaver River, about 72 mi (116 km) northwest of Toronto is one of the many waterfalls of the Niagara Escarpment. The area near the falls was the site of a brief gold rush in the 1850s that quickly became a Fool’s Gold Rush when the “gold” was discovered to be iron pyrite. Shortly thereafter, the falls became the power source for several mills. Later a hydroelectric plant was built to power local industry and to provide electricity to the nearby towns. Today the station generates a continuous 6.3 megawatts from the highest head in eastern North America. Most of the water of the Beaver River is diverted for power generation, approximately 0.6 mi (1 km) upstream from the falls. This leaves little more than a trickle of water in the river in late summer, when this photo was taken on August 28, 2011.

Astronomy Picture of the Day for October 7th

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

A Sun Pillar Over Ontario
Image Credit & Copyright: Rick Stankiewicz (Peterborough Astronomical Association) 

Explanation: What is that on the horizon? No, it’s not an alien starship battling distant Earthlings, but rather a sun pillar. When driving across Ontario, Canada in early June, the photographer was surprised to encounter such an “eerie and beautiful” vista, and immediately took pictures. When the atmosphere is cold, ice sometimes forms flat six-sided crystals as it falls from high-level clouds. Air resistance then causes these crystals to lie nearly flat much of the time as they flutter to the ground. If viewed toward a rising or setting Sun, these flat crystals will reflect sunlight and create an unusual column of light — a sun pillar as seen above. Such columns of light are not uncommon to see, and a retrospective of past APODs that have featured picturesque sun pillars can be found here.

The Broomstick

The Broomstick

Hands on Harvesting Fun

by Tiger von Pagel


The autumnal equinox has a special meaning for those of us who revere the earth and its gifts. This is the season of the harvest, and we can feel it in the cool evening air, smell it in the aroma of woodsmoke and damp soil, taste its crispness in the bite of a freshly picked apple and see its splendor in the russet and gold leaves as they fall from the trees. This time of year, perhaps more than any other, we are reminded of the bounty of the Goddess, and I think a trip made at this season should focus on the source of our daily sustenance. This can be done with a vacation to a working farm. There are hundreds of farms and ranches around the world that are designed to accommodate visitors and overnight guests, but there are especially quite a few located in Ontario, Canada.

The province of Ontario is very dependent on its local farms and does a great deal to promote farming as part of the tourist industry. There is even an organization that is dedicated to farming vacations called Ontario Farm and Country Accomodations. This group provides information on working farms where visitors are invited to stay and assist in daily chores such as feeding animals and picking vegetables. One such farm is Jamka Farm in Prince Edward County. A 100 acre family farm, Jamka Farm still relies on traditional methods for its day to day workings, and guests can experience a truly “hands-on” vacation while collecting eggs for breakfast, milking cows by hand, and feeding the farms flock of sheep. The farm is open year round, and in the spring when “baby season” begins you can be present for the birthing of lambs and hatching of chicks and ducklings. However, many people recommend visiting at harvest time when you can pick vegetables for the evening meal and ward off the night’s chill with a mug of mulled cider by the hearthfire.

Another unique harvest experience can be had at one of the many “U-pick” farms in the area. Places such as Campbells Orchards, also in Prince Edward County, have acres of orchards where you can pick your own apples and pumpkins. Other farms in this area of Ontario include Maple Ridge Farms in Picton, Eagles Rest Farm in Lanark, and Woodrow Farm and Guest Ranch in Balderson. All offer bed and breakfast accomodations and a chance to experience the simple pleasures of harvest season up close and personal.

It isn’t necessary to travel all the way to Ontario for a farm harvest experience. There are a number of farm bed and breakfast establishments right here in the Pacific Northwest. One such farm is the Normandie Farm B & B in Sequim, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula. Promoted as a little piece of French country living right here in Washington State, the Normandie Farm is most noted for its homespun wool. The proprietress is an accomplished spinner and weaver, and she gets her fleece from the sheep that are raised right there at the farm.

You can also spend a day in Bellevue at the Kelsey Creek Farm. Open from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Kelsey Creek is a fully operating farm (with horses, pigs, chickens and rabbits) and offers free self-guided tours. Also of note here is the Japanese garden that is dedicated to Yao, Bellevue’s sister city in Japan. Another free self-guided farm tour can be had in the Snoqualmie Valley at Carnation Farms. This 900-acre working dairy is open to the public from March to October and is famous as the “Home of the Contented Cows”. This area is also home to a number of “U-pick” farms for your own personal harvest. Most notably are Remlinger U-Pick Farms just south of Carnation, which offers a petting farm and restaurant, and Fall City Farms in Fall City, well known for its garlic and shallots as well as apple orchards and pick your own pumpkin fields. Whether you choose a week long vacation on a farm or an afternoon picking apples, enjoy this magical time of the year that is autumn, and happy travelling always.

Today’s Featured Picture……

Today’s featured picture

Ontario Highway 401 Highway 401, the busiest highway in North America, with only a single vehicle travelling on it due to its partial closure following the Toronto propane explosions in 2008. Highway 401 uses a collector-express system, which divides each direction of travel into two parallel carriageways, separating local and long distance traffic.

Photo: Kenny Louie