NHL Conference Finals Predictions:

Eastern Conference:

Tampa Bay Lightning over New York Rangers 4-1

The Rangers have come from behind and stolen seven-game series from both the Pittsburgh Penguins and Carolina Hurricanes, with the key being goalie Igor Shesterkin, as New York has been outplayed by its opponents for significant chunks in the first two rounds. Their reward is home ice advantage in the conference finals, but at the price of the matching up with the Tampa Bay Lightning, the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion, who have seemed to find their footing after an uneven regular season.

Shesterkin and his Lightning counterpart, Andrei Vasilevskiy, are a juicy goaltending matchup, and each are more than capable of stealing a series. That said, at this point, the Lightning are the more complete team.

Western Conference:

Colorado Avalanche over Edmonton Oilers 4-2

I admit I have the hindsight of knowing the result of the 8-6 shootout victory for the Avalanche in Game One. I predict more of the same high octane offense regardless of any counter measures each team will take to slow down the other. A interesting stat I read this morning stated that the Oilers have scored the most goals thus far in the postseason. Unfortunately, they have given up the most, as well. I expect more of the latter against Colorado.

Visit to the Apricot Orchard

Margie Guyot Art

“Apricots in Bloom – King Orchards” — plein air field study in oil on wood panel 8 x 16″ by Margie Guyot

This morning I went over to King Orchards with a painting buddy to do my “obligatory spring orchard painting”. It’s kind of a joke among us plein air painters about painting orchards in bloom. They’re murderously difficult to get a “decent” painting out of, what with all the trees all lined up like rows of soldiers. Artists are always looking for “artistic flow” and it’s frustrating when everything is so, well, predictably orderly.Excuses, excuses! But every year my painter friends and I speak wistfully all winter long of beautiful, sunny, warm days out in the orchards.

A couple years ago while taking a workshop from a highly revered member of Oil Painters of America, I asked him what his secret was for executing a successful orchard painting…

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Chicken Parm Meatballs


16 oz pasta (fettucine in the picture)

30 0z pasta sauce

1 pound ground chicken

1/2 cups Panko

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 large egg

2 tablespoons cooking oil


Combine the Panko and seasoning (Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper) into a small bowl and stir.

Place the ground chicken in a large bowl. Add the Panko/seasoning mixture to the chicken, along with the egg. Evenly distribute the contents by hand.

Shape the combined mixture into meatballs.

Heat 1 tablespoon of cooking oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Once skillet is hot, add half the meatballs. Cook meatballs for one minute each side (6 sides) until browned and completely cooked through.

Transfer the cooked meatballs to a clean plate.

Repeat with the other half of meatballs.

While meatballs are cooking, boil water in a large pot and cook the pasta for 7-10 minutes. Drain when cooked.

Add the sauce to a medium sauce pot and heat over medium-low. Stir occasionally.

Add all meatballs to the heated pasta sauce and stir.

Pour meatballs and sauce to the drained pasta and stir.

The Unsolved Murder of Christina Kettlewell — The True Crime Files

Case File Overview  Christina Cecelia Mocon was born in Toronto, Ontario on August 7, 1925, to Kazmier and Mary Mocon – Polish immigrants and devout… 15 more words

The Unsolved Murder of Christina Kettlewell — The True Crime Files

This Day in History

June 1, 1941:

Crete falls to German forces.


During World War II, Crete, the last Allied stronghold in Greece, is captured by German forces at high cost to both sides.

In late 1940, the Greek army, reinforced by the British air force, decisively repulsed an Italian invasion of their nation. In April 1941, these triumphs turned to defeat when Nazi leader Adolf Hitler turned his undefeated German Wehrmacht against the country. The German army advanced so quickly in Greece that the British were forced to cancel plans to send reinforcements to the country. On April 23, the Greek king and his government evacuated to Crete, an island south of the Greek mainland, and on April 24 a general Allied evacuation to the island began. For the next six days, the Germans bombarded the Allied ships streaming to Crete, killing some 15,000 Allied sailors and troops. By April 29, however, almost 50,000 British, Greek, Australian, and New Zealand troops had reached the safety of the heavily fortified island.

Three weeks later, the German invasion of Crete began, and more than 20,000 German parachute troops landed on the island within a few days. Under heavy resistance from the Allies, the Germans succeeded in gaining control of an airfield and were thus able to fly in a steady number of reinforcements. On May 26, the Allies began to move to the southern coast of Crete, where an evacuation to British-controlled Egypt began. By June 1, the last of some 20,000 surviving Allied troops had escaped, and Crete fell to the Axis.

Taken from: https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/crete-falls-to-german-forces

Review: “18 1/2”

Katie at the Movies

To this day, no one is certain what exactly was said during the 18 ½ minute gap in a tape of President Richard Nixon reportedly discussing the Watergate break-in with his then Chief of Staff, Bob Haldeman, or who erased it in the first place. Nixon’s secretary claimed to have pushed a wrong button and accidentally recorded over the conversation, but the truth of that statement has always been a source of debate. It’s that question that forms the basis of director Dan Mirvish’s “18 ½,” a twisty comic thriller that invites the viewer to consider a version events where the missing portion of that tape was located.

The story, set amidst the scandal in 1974, centers around Connie (Willa Fitzgerald), a government stenographer who stumbles upon the missing piece of the tape. She decides to bring it to a reporter, Paul (John Magaro), in the hope that…

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If the chimpanzees were given their chance

To come out of the barrel

And leave their mark on this world

The way it is today

To lead the nations

This nation

Would they be able to find common ground?

Communicate through their differences

and recognize the whole is greater than the sum of the parts?

Find a way to love one another

regardless of affiliation or personal views?

Would they whine about trivial “hardships” that seem petty?

Or understand and empathize with those around the world that are TRULY suffering?

Would they ignore others’ pain as long as it didn’t affect them

in the ultimate display of selfishness?

Even if their penchant for flinging their own feces is too great for cessasion

Could they possibly screw this planet up any more than humans?

I do not believe so

It’s time for the chimpanzees to have their chance

My All-Time Baseball Team

Starting Pitcher: Grover Cleveland Alexander


1911-1930 with Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs, and St. Louis Cardinals

Nicknames, “Old Pete”

373 career victories (third most all time)

2.56 career earned run average (ERA)

2,198 career strikeouts

3-time MLB pitching triple crown winner (victories, ERA, strikeouts)

6-time National League wins leader

4-time NL ERA leader

6-time NL strikeout leader

1926 World Series champion (St. Louis Cardinals)

Inducted into Baseball Hall of Fame in 1938

Ranked number 12 on the Sporting News’ list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players

Jersey retired by the Phillies

Catcher: Yogi Berra

First Base: Lou Gehrig

Second Base: Rogers Hornsby

Shortstop: Honus Wagner

Third Base: Mike Schmidt

Left Field: Ted Williams

Center Field: Willie Mays

Right Field: Babe Ruth

Starting Pitcher: Walter Johnson

Starting Pitcher: Christy Mathewson

Starting Pitcher: Warren Spahn

Starting Pitcher: Grover Cleveland Alexander

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