Category Archives: Uncategorized

WWII Recipe – Homity Pie

(See my other WWII food-related articles) – Wartime rationing constrained what most people could have for their meals. In the UK one of the favorites of the period was Homity Pie. This all vegetarian dish was easy to make and used those ingredients likely available. It was often made by the members of the Women’s Land Army. Sometimes it is referred to as Devon Pie as Devonshire might have been the point of origin. The exact origin seems to have been lost, but it became popular during WWII.

The pie had a simple flour and butter crust. It was then filled with cubed potatoes & apples, chopped leaks, a little cheese, and one egg. It was seasoned with thyme, finely chopped garlic, salt, and pepper.

A baked pie was generally cut into six or eight slices. A sixth of a pie would contain around 625 calories and 50 g of carbs.

Further reading:

  1. Historical recipe: Second World War staple Homity pie
  2. Homity Pie a Second World War recipe
  3. Homity Pie (British Cheesy Potato Leek Pie)
  4. HOMITY PIE
  5. Homity Pie: Inspired by the Land Girls of WWII
  6. HOMITY PIE
  7. Homity Pie – Recipe No 134
  8. Homity pie

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If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 560 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Product Review: Benfei Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to VGA Adapter

(See my other Mac related posts) – I have been an advocate of using multiple displays for many years. My primary computer is a 2018 Mac mini. Newer Macs like mine are capable of supporting multiple displays. However even my old 2011 Mac mini could handle two displays. Per the Apple Technical Specification:

Support for the following combination of maximum concurrent display setups:

  • Up to three displays:
    • Two displays with 4096-by-2304 resolution at 60Hz connected via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096-by-2160 resolution at 60Hz connected via HDMI 2.0
  • Up to two displays:
    • One display with 5120-by-2880 resolution at 60Hz connected via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096-by-2160 resolution at 60Hz connected via HDMI 2.0

Unfortunately the VGA to USB-C adapter I had been using recently failed. I needed to buy another adapter to connect the display to my Mac. I already have my primary display connected through the HDMI port.

The older display I wanted to use only has VGA input. I did a little online investigation and came across a solution. The USB-C to VGA Adapter, Benfei Thunderbolt 3 (USB Type C) to VGA Adapter Male to Female Converter Compatible for Apple New MacBook on Amazon. The price was under $13 and had 4.5 stars on over 1800 reviews. I ordered one.

As a Prime member, it arrived the next day. I have been using it since the end of July and it has performed very well. I now have a very reliable second display. In fact, I think I have another old display in my garage. If I can find it I will be ordering another of the adapters so that I can have three displays.

If you need to connect a second or third display to your Mac this is an inexpensive way.

If you are looking for Mac software, check out my macOS software directory. There are hundreds of titles listed.

Operation Dragoon, the Second Allied Invasion of France, Takes Place in 1944

While Operation Overlord, the June 6th Allied invasion took place at Normandy, Operation Dragoon was in Provence in Southern France. Dragoon was originally planned to coincide with the Normandy landing. A lack of resources caused the second invasion to be delayed.

Landing at Côte d’Azur on the Mediterranean coast were the US VI Corps and French Army B. The main landing force was from the VI Corps. The 3rd Infantry Division landed on the left at Alpha Beach (Cavalaire-sur-Mer). The 45th Infantry Division landed in the center at Delta Beach (Le Muy, Saint-Tropez). The 36th Infantry Division landed on the right at Camel Beach (Saint-Raphaël). All three of these landing were very successful with relatively little resistance.

The objective of the landing was to prevent the Germans from diverting their forces in Southern France to reinforce Normandy.

Resources:

  1. Texas Military Forces Museum – The Texas National Guard was federalized as the 36th Infantry Division in WWII

If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 560 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Book Review: “Hitler’s War in Africa 1941-1942: The Road to Cairo”

(See all my Book Reviews and Author Interviews) – Author David Mitchelhill-Green published the book Hitler’s War in Africa 1941-1942: The Road to Cairo in 2021. He has published nearly a dozen books, mostly about the history of WWII.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this book as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of mild violence. The book tells the story of the German Army in North Africa.  

The book begins with the 1941 arrival in North Africa of a small force of mechanized German troops. Hitler has sent them to support the Italians in North Africa. German forces initially enjoyed a great deal of success. Under the direction of General Erwin Rommel, they were able to reverse much of the Italian losses. 

Rommel went far beyond his orders taking the German Army up to the very brink of capturing Egypt. The struggle for Tobruk occupied both the Germans and the British. The book covers the efforts of both sides in some detail. The British undertook many operations to displace the Germans and relieve Tobruk. These resulted in one failure after another. 

With Montgomery at the head of the British 8th Army, they began to push the Germans to the West. In November of 1942 US and other Allied forces landed in Morocco and Algeria. They began a push to the East. The Allies were able to finally squeeze the Germans from North Africa by late spring of 1943.

I enjoyed the 6.5 hours I spent reading this 279-page WWII history. The author includes many facts and the names of those involved in the North African campaign. He was able to include many brief first-hand quotes or observations. The book is academic but is very readable. I like the chosen cover art. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you have an interest in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Resources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 560 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Hurricane Season for the U.S. Begins Today

June 1 marks the beginning of hurricane season for the Atlantic and the U.S. Hurricane Season is nominally defined as June 1 to November 30. As in the past few years, the 2021 season is expected to be more active than normal. If you live in the US, particularly the eastern or gulf coast regions, you will want to keep up with hurricanes.

Some sources for keeping up-to-date with hurricanes are:

Source (website)FacebookTwitter
AccuWeatherYesYes
National Weather Service
USA Today
Weather Underground
HurricaneTrackYes
WeatherUSAYesYes
Hurricane Tracker Websites

Further Reading:

Author Interview – Maxx Powr

(See my other Author Interviews) – I read the novel “The Promise” a few weeks ago. After I published my review I contacted the author who uses the pen name  Maxx Powr. He graciously agreed to an interview.

Myself: When did you first realize that you wanted to become a writer?

Powr: I had some encouragement in high school from my English teacher, but never really pursued it. Working as a programmer later in life, I decided to write a childrens’ book, or 2. I submitted the books (over the transom back then) to publishers and received more encouragement, but also rejections. Life intervened and writing was put on hold for years, until Fairalon under the pen name T.J. Roberts. This was a childrens’ book and I needed a new pen name for The Promise, so children wouldn’t think it was a sequel. The Promise does have language and sexual situations and I didn’t want them to be shocked.

Myself: My background is also in IT and Software Development. What is the first piece that you remember writing?

Powr: The Flight of the Dodo. MG/YA adventure for boys. I may actually rework that one as I really liked it, and so did the publisher I sent it to.

Myself: What is your academic and work background?

Powr: I hold a masters degree in Rehabilitation Counseling. I’ve worked as an Emergency Crisis Intervention Counselor, Children and Adult Family Therapist, Programmer, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor, and then started 2 companies, which I still manage.

Myself: What part of the world do you currently live in?

Powr: Southern California

Myself: Do you think that living there has affected your writing?

Powr: Not really. When I write, I live in the book on the screen. 

Myself: How do you relax? What are your hobbies?

Powr: Video games (COD),  3d art, photography

Myself: What’s the earliest book you remember reading for yourself?

Powr: Treasure Island comes to mind. 

Myself: Did you read much growing up?

Powr: Reading was required in my schools, assigned reading; some good some not.  I was an avid comic book reader for fun, much to my parents’ chagrin. 

Myself: What have you read recently?

Powr: Making Comics by Scott Mcloud

Myself: What is your favorite genre? book? character? author?

Powr: Sci-Fi and Fantasy. I don’t really have a favorite book, character or author. 

Myself: While I read a great deal of WWII era history, Science Fiction and Fantasy are my favorite genres of novels too. Where is your favorite place to read?

Powr: On our porch.

Myself: Do you prefer paper or eBooks? Do you listen to audiobooks?

Powr: I like paper books, but I’m buying more ebooks to support other Indies. I have listened to audiobooks, and I like it best when the author reads it.

Myself: What books do you recommend to others? Give as gifts

Powr:Typically, mine. 🙂

Myself: What makes you sit down and want to share your stories?

Powr: I just like to write stories that thrill me, things I would like to see in a movie. Basically, the stories play out like a movie in my head, The Promise is a good example of that. Once I start, the characters often take me down an unsuspected road, saying things that surprise me. I love that part of it.

Myself: What are your ambitions for your writing career?

Powr: I don’t think I’m like a lot of writers, I’m not that ambitious about my writing career. Sure, it would be nice to see my books made into movies, but that is just a dream. I just want to tell some stories that get people jazzed. I don’t expect to be the next big thing. If people enjoy them, I’ll be happy.

Myself: I certainly found your novel enjoyable and a fun read. Why do you write? What makes you sit down and want to share your stories?

Powr: It’s a little selfish but I write for myself. I’ve found that overall people tend to like what I like so it works for me.

Myself: Is there anyone who has influenced your writing?

Powr: Everyone has influenced my writing. One particular author? No. 

Myself: How did you pick the genres for your stories?

Powr: I love Sci-Fi and I love Fantasy. For me, it’s an escape to a world of ‘if only.’

Myself: Where do your story ideas come from?

Powr: Weirdly, some come from 3d art. I like to ‘play’ with 3d programs called Poser and Iclone. You can create scenes that you see in your head without artistic ability to draw. I admire people who can just draw what they think of, but my stick figures don’t really cut it.

Myself: Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just to see where an idea takes you?

Powr: I generally start with one scene that I really like. That scene leads to another, which leads to a former scene. If they are good enough, I start playing with an outline for the arc of the story and the character arc, though they often argue with me.

Myself: Where do you do your writing? Why there?

Powr: I basically have 3 jobs. I have a bit of a cave set up under my house. Window is blocked with an AC unit, so it’s dark in there, except for my multiple screens. I work on computers and answer a phone as needed. It can be disruptive, but I find time in between to write.

Myself: What is your schedule like when you are writing?

Powr: I laughed when I read that. My schedule is whenever I have a moment. But, once I get caught up in the scene, I usually don’t stop until that scene is completed.

Myself: How do you fit writing into your daily schedule? (i.e. balance work, writing and family)

Powr: I write between tasks. It honestly stinks, because there are times when it’s flowing and you get interrupted. It is what it is.

Myself: About how long does it take you to complete a first draft? How long do your revisions take?

Powr: Probably a year for the first draft, a year for the final product. I like to create the scenes in 3d, and that can get pretty demanding timewise.

Myself: I see on your web sites that you have posted some of your 3D art. Have you thought of including some of those images in your novels?

Powr: If you take a look at Fairalon, you’ll see all the images in the book are presented on the web site in higher resolution 1 for each chapter. Also, the cover and back of the book open up to one big image of the road to grandma’s house, with Charlie swinging and Iris in the back seat watching. * (You can see them all on www.Fairalon.com so you don’t have to buy the book to see them). However, tremendous spoilers ahead in the images. I recommend looking at the images in a color reader like Kindle Fire or such, or the hard copy has printed color images. You can also read the text in a B&W kindle, nook or whatever, and then look at the images online. I put them there for people who didn’t have color readers, but do have computers with color monitors.

As for the Adult Sci Fi, like The Promise, most adult Sci-Fi books don’t include images. The images on the book cover and back are 3d art I created. (On the back is Sheen in her regen machine with Chase 523, the front is The Promise going through a wormhole)

There are arguments on both sides, such as leaving it up to the reader’s imagination versus showing them in a picture. I really like creating the images. It’s like walking around inside the scene in my head. It’s also very challenging to get anything that looks really good. My latest of Sheen is an image I really like. She looks real (to me).

Myself: That is a very lifelike image. I can understand the added cost and time involved with including your images in print. Perhaps though some could be included in your ebooks. How much research do you put into a novel?

Powr: It depends. I found that The Promise took more research than Fairalon, but I research as needed and try not to fall into interesting rabbit holes.

Myself: What tools (software?) do you use in your writing?

Powr: I prefer WordPerfect, but had to switch to Word because all the editors use it. I’ve started using Grammarly and ProWritingAid and they are both very good.

Myself: I have been using Grammarly as well and really like it. Using it has improved my writing. What are the hardest and easiest things about writing?

Powr: Hardest: Finding the time to write.  Easiest: I enjoy writing dialogue, for some strange reason.

Myself: What advice would you give to an aspiring author?

Powr: Keep your day job as long as you can. From what I’ve read it can take 10 years to acquire an agent. 10 years! And that doesn’t mean you’ll be published. You need to eat, pay bills, and if you go Indie, pay for marketing your book. Don’t go nuts foregoing a normal life. It is good to keep a balance.

Myself: What novels/works have you published?

Powr: Fairalon MG/YA Fantasy Adventure
The Promise Adult Sci-Fi Action Adventure

Myself: What are you currently working on?

Powr: Return to Fairalon Because High School is a Creep Show (working title) and a sequel to The Promise, no working title as yet

Myself: What else would you like to share?

Powr: If you feel like you would like to write a book, that’s great. Don’t expect to be the next J.K. Rowling, but it’s okay to have a dream.
Do it for you.

The best advice that I stumbled across on my own is this: When it’s done, final version #158, grab an audio program and record the book as if you were reading it for an audiobook. Try your best to read it with inflection. You don’t have to do voices or sound effects. Read it like you are reading it to a friend. Now that you have finished recording all the chapters, (it takes a long time) take some time to listen. You will hear things that are like nails on a chalkboard, or music to your ears, depending upon how much editing you have done. Fix it. Re-record and listen again. If you are lucky, you won’t have that much to do. If not, you will be so glad you didn’t send it to an editor.

Myself: That is very good advice! How should your fans follow you or get in touch?

Powr: I have web sites for Fairalon www.Fairalon.com and www.PiecerChronicles.com. The Fairalon site has an email link (fairlontjroberts@gmail.com) and the PiecerChronicles site has a form.

Myself: I see you have a MeWe link on your PiecerChronicles website. I have recently added that social platform as well.

Powr: I’m really only going to be there from now on, or the main web sites. I prefer MeWe to Facebook, (no ads).

USA, Alabama, Mobile – Carpe Diem Coffee & Tea Company

(See my other Food and Coffee related posts) – While we were recently returning home from a trip to Disney World we stopped in Mobile, AL. A little searching on the Internet produced the Carpe Diem Coffee & Tea Co. as a popular local coffee house.

We spent two nights in Mobile and we liked Carpe Diem so much we visited it twice. They offer a selection of breakfast and lunch items, but we focused on their baked goods. It was busy both times we visited. Parking can be a little difficult, but a little patience usually yields a place.

Carpe Diem is located in what looks like an old house. It can be found at 4072 Old Shell Road, Mobile, AL 36608. It is directly across the street from Spring Hill College. We tried coffee and an assortment of baked goods on our two visits. We tried their Cinnamon Role, Blueberry Crumble Cake, Mississippi Mud, and White Chocolate Raspberry Scone. We were very pleased with it all.

We have begun to look for and doing flavored coffee. It is not always easy to find freshly roasted and flavored coffee beans. We were able to find some at Carpe Diem and have been very pleased. They offer several types of freshly roasted coffee beans – Medium Roast, Dark Roast, Blends and Flavored. We bought Snickerdoodle, Christmas Morning, and S’mores flavored coffees. We have been enjoying those since we returned home, but sadly all three are almost now gone. We may have to take advantage of they mail order service.

If you are in Mobile and looking for a caffeine hit (or some baked goodies), I recommend Carpe Diem!


See my other Food & Location posts


Pacific War in art – 1945

Here is the final post by GP Cox with artwork from WWII Pacific Theater. This has been a great series on his blog and well worth my repeating it.
——
If you are interested in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest.
* The “World War II Sources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 490 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II-era in history.
* The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
* The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Pacific Paratrooper

I wish all of the distinguished artists of WWII could have been included – here is the final year of the Pacific War…

“Battle of Luzon” by: Yorozujiro Terauchi, 1945
Mandalay, Burma, by: David Pentland, Feb. ’45
Pacific Glory” by: Nicholas Trudgian

It is March 1945 and the P-38’s of the 475th FG are involved in a huge dogfight with Japanese Zeros over the coast of Indo-China. Flying “Pee Wee V” is Lt Ken Hart of the 431st Fighter Squadron, who has fatally damaged a Zero in a blistering head on encounter. The second P-38L – “Vickie” – belongs to Captain John ‘rabbit’ Pietz, who would end the War as an Ace with six victories.
Signed by three highly decorated P-38 pilots who flew in combat with the 475th Fighter Group in the Pacific theatre during World War II.

‘The Great Tokyo Air Raid’ by: Hashimoto Kimisuke, 10 March ’45…

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Pacific War in art – 1944

More good WWII artwork from GP Cox


If you are interested in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Sources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 490 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II-era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Pacific Paratrooper

As promised, here is an example of other works of art for the following year of the Pacific War…

USMC in the Marshall Islands, 31 Jan 1944, by: James V. Griffin

 

Truk Island, Carolinas, by: Frank Lemon

 

RNZAF, May 1944 with Corsairs

 

Saipan Jun-july 1944, by: Robert Benney

 

War Weary, by: Jack Fellows

 

Guam, July-Aug. by: Howard Gerard

 

Peleliu Invaded, Sept. 1944, By: Tom Lea

 

Avengers of the Philippines, by: John D. Shaw

November 14, 1944 . . . As smoldering enemy ships mark a trail to Manila Bay, Avengers and Hellcats of Air Group 51 overfly the isle of Corregidor on their return to the carrier U.S.S. San Jacinto.

With the misty mountains of Bataan standing as a silent sentinel, Naval LT (JG) George H.W. Bush pilots his TBM in one of his last combat missions of WWII. The valor of Bush’s…

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Pacific War in art – 1943

Some more good WWII Pacific Theater Art from GP Cox’s Blog.


If you are interested in the WWII era of history, you may find these three pages of interest. 

  • The “World War II Sources” page is a constantly growing collection of more than 490 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II-era in history.
  • The “World War II Timeline” page expands almost daily and shows events leading up to WWII, as well as during the war. Events are broken down into the Pacific and European Theaters by date.
  • The About WWII page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Pacific Paratrooper

TO CONTINUE OUR MINI-GALLERY OF DISTINGUISHED ARTIST’S VIEW OF WWII ……

RAAF Kittyhawk Squadron, Milne Bay, New Guinea, by: Jack Fellows

5th Air Force & RAAF, Battle of the Bismark Sea

USS Bailey, Battle of Komandorski, by I.R. Lloyd

“Mission Accomplished”, Yamamoto shot down, 18 April 1943, by Roy Grinnell

Japanese postcard, Aleutian Campaign

The Solomons, by: Peter Dennis

IJN Amagiri ramming PT-109

‘Marine Raider’ Bougainville, by: Marc Erickson

Tarawa by: Tom Lovell

Pappy Boyington, F-4U Corsair, by: Craig Tinder

Cape Gloucester, Solomons, 26 Dec. 1943

Resources:

IHRA: for their blog and their books and prints

Jack Fellows website

“WWII: A Tribute in Art and Literature” edited by David Colbert

Nicholas Trudgian

http://www.nicolastrudgian.com/

I.R. Lloyd

http://ussbaileydd492.org/crew_signatures_on_ir_lloyd_painting_the_battle_of_the_komandorski_islands.html

Roy Grinnell

https://www.roygrinnellart.com/

CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE.

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Military Humor –

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Farewell Salutes –

Jack D. Baker – New Salisbury, IN; US Navy, WWII, USS Iowa

Gilbert Clarin – Turlock, CA; US…

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