Supersaturation

One of my favorite chemistry demonstrations involves a supersaturated sodium acetate solution.  I usually do it in a beaker in the lab, but you can do the same thing at home with a reusable hand warmer.  Basically it’s filled with some water that contains more sodium acetate than it should be able to hold.  The solution is unstable and all it needs is something to begin the crystallization process (in the reusable hand warmers you do this by clicking the little metal button). Inst...
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My First Answered Prayer

It was 1959.  An eleven-year-old living in Northern California, I was the second oldest of six children in a religious family.  Although I was an obedient girl and said my prayers every night, all my needs seem to have been met by my parents, and as a result, I had not yet had any direct experience with answers to prayer.  Here is the story of the first recorded instance, told in the relevant excerpts from my diary at the time: March 10, 1959 We had a lesson in church about being mod...
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Motives & Manganese

By Mike C. In June 1974 billionaire playboy Tony Stark, uhh… I mean Howard Hughes,  launched the Hughes Glomar Explorer (HGE).  At 618 feet and 36,000 tons, the ship was a pretty impressive sight.  Reports said it had the capability to pick up 5,000 tons of ore off the ocean floor each day.  And what kind of ore were they looking for – gold, silver, platinum?  Actually they were reportedly looking for manganese. The story gets stranger.  It turns out that the whole manganese story was ...
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Lost and Found

The gears shrieked and the engine groaned as the U-Haul I was driving labored slowly up Parley’s Canyon, while other vehicles whizzed indignantly past.  Finally Liz, my 16-year-old daughter following me in the family car, couldn’t take the sluggish pace any longer.  Despite instructions to stay behind the truck, she pulled out into the left lane, stomped on the accelerator, and soon disappeared from sight. Three reluctant children and I were moving from California to South Dakota to begin...
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How Generous Should A Good Christian Be?

During my Master's program when we were relatively poor I went to the local supermarket and found some fantastic sales on foods we enjoy - cheese, hamburger, pork shoulder, it was quite a list. So I felt impressed to buy twice as much as usual, and went home.  My wife was delighted.  She had been visiting a mother who was literally starving.  She felt spiritual promptings to help her immediately, but we did not have the food.  And then I walked in, at which point she took half and went to de...
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More Than a Teacher

By Adena and Amy Every day in class, he sat hunched in his desk, eyes down, shoulders turned inward, in his own silent world. He didn’t talk to anyone. Everyone ignored him. His grades started slipping. Then, he wasn’t in class for a few days and I received the email from the counselors: he had tried to commit suicide. Two months later he was back in class. Everyone still ignored him. He still sat hunched in his desk, not talking to anyone. *********************************************...
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