Friday Fotos: Mysterious Ice Circles

March 8, 2013

Ice CirclesLast month we did a Friday Foto post about a magical frozen bubble lake and while researching it, we stumbled upon another type of mysterious frozen beauty called ice circles.

According to Wikipedia, an ice circle, ice disc or ice pan is a natural phenomenon that occurs in slow moving water in cold climates. Ice circles and discs have most frequently been observed in Scandinavia and North America, but they are occasionally recorded as far south as England and Wales.

Ice circles are thin and circular slabs of ice that rotate slowly in the water. It is believed that they form in eddy currents and they vary in size with some reported to be more than 4 metres (13 ft) in diameter.

Ice discs form on the outer bends in a river where the accelerating water creates a force called ‘rotational shear’, which breaks off a chunk of ice and twists it around. As the disc rotates, it grinds against surrounding ice — smoothing into a circle.

Ice pans are surface slabs of ice that form in the center of a lake or creek, instead of along the water’s edge, according to river specialist and geography professor Joe Desloges. As water cools, it releases heat that turns into frazil ice — a collection of loose, randomly oriented needle-shaped ice crystals that can cluster together into a pan-shaped formation.

There are many gorgeous photos and videos about ice circles online and below are some of our faves…

photo of ice circles by Gary Lane - Wapiti River Guides

ice circle

ice circle in river

Sheridan Creek, Rattray Marsh in Ontario, Canada (Source)

view of ice circle in Russia's Lake Baikal from ISS

Lake Baikal in Russia (Spotted by ISS astronauts)

ice circles in Russia

 Russia (Source)

See more cool ice circle photos and watch a short video on … and have a great weekend everyone! 🙂 j & B

Change your batteries and clocks and check your preparedness stocks

March 7, 2013

This Sunday (March 10th) is the start of Daylight Savings Time meaning most people will lose an hour when they spring forward.

Even if you don’t observe DST (like us here in Arizona), it’s a great time to change your batteries and clocks and check your preparedness stocks.

Some things to consider doing this weekend…

  • Change the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide (CO) detectors around your home. And remember to replace your detectors every 10 years.
  • Prepare and practice escape plans so you and your loved ones can get out of your home safely in case of fire.
  • Test and rotate batteries in your Weather Radios so you’re ready for wild spring weather.
  • Check and rotate out water, food and all items in your home, auto, office and locker preparedness kits. Don’t forget to make kits for your critters too!
  • Update your Family Emergency Plan (e.g. confirm meeting places [esp with the little ones in case you are separated during an emergency], ensure all phone numbers are current, etc.)
  • Go through your Important Family Documents to make sure everything is current (e.g. wills, insurance policies, immunization and medical data, credit card #s, recent photos of family and pets, etc.)

For more information about how to make a Family Emergency Plan and tips on developing kits, visit and download a free 57-page mini ebook compliments of Fedhealth and the U.S. First Responders Association. You can also learn more about our customizable products and fundraising programs. Stay safe!

Would you take this crap if your life depended on it?

March 4, 2013

Have you ever said or thought “I won’t take any crap from you”..?

Well … here’s a different twist on that logic. Did you know recent studies show “poop transplants” are an effective way to treat people with one type of intestinal bacteria infection?

Researchers transplanted fecal matter from healthy people into the colons of people infected with the notoriously hard-to-treat Clostridium difficile (klos-TRID-e-uhm dif-uh-SEEL) bacteria (a.k.a. C. diff), which causes severe, watery diarrhea.

The researchers found that 46 out of 49 patients got better within a week of the enema treatment.

And according to, scientists have created a fake feces — a “super-probiotic” named RePOOPulate — that could be a safer alternative to the real poop transplants.

“C. diff is a serious infection — people die from this. With this treatment, the cure rate is close to 100 percent,” said study researcher Dr. Mayur Ramesh, an infectious disease physician at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

According to USA Today, C. diff is linked to more than 30,000 deaths a year in the United States — about twice federal estimates and rivaling the 32,000 killed in traffic accidents. And it sickens almost 500,000 Americans a year.

Also, one out of five people who get the infection will get it again, and recurrences can be more severe or deadly.

Unfortunately C. diff spores can survive on most surfaces for months and most hospital cleaners won’t kill it, but a solution of bleach and water could. Also, alcohol-based hand sanitizers used in many health facilities do not work against C. diff … so staff, patients and visitors must wash hands with soap and water frequently to reduce spreading the infection.

Read more about poop transplants at and Live Science

And learn more about C. diff from the CDC  or Mayo Clinic

And finally … try not to take any crap from anybody … unless you need to for health reasons.

Have a great week! 🙂 j & B

Friday Fotos: Massive Sinkholes

March 1, 2013

Last night a Florida man fell into a sinkhole that opened suddenly and swallowed the bedroom of his suburban Tampa home. CNN reports the sinkhole is about 20 feet to 30 feet across and may be 30 feet deep, but sadly there are no signs of life as of tonight.

Sinkholes are common in Florida, according to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. The state lies on bedrock made of limestone or other carbonate rock that can be eaten away by acidic groundwater, forming voids that collapse when the rock can no longer support the weight of what’s above it. In fact, many of the lakes in Florida are relic sinkholes.

But sinkholes can happen anywhere in the world as shown below…

APTOPIX Germany Landslide and sinkhole

sinkhole in parking lot

sinkhole in road

collapsed segment of a street in Germany

sinkhole in Guatemala

Guatemala sinkhole

Great blue hole

Have a great weekend! 🙂 j & B

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