Sunday, March 27, 2011

Having Fun!!

I think we grown-ups forget sometimes how important it is to have fun.  We get bogged down with our jobs, our responsibilities, our image, or our 'whatevers'.  Paying that mortgage, saving for the kid's college educations, and taking care of everyone else but ourselves takes precedence.  This is true, I think, for all of us.

When we do get a spare moment during our busy days, we can quickly find something to fill the gap.  Whether it's a new hobby, volunteering or sitting in front of the TV, we manage to fill every minute with "meaningful activity".

I find myself with projects piling up and wondering when the time will come to get them done.  Some of these projects are, yes, you guessed it, for having fun.  Like painting, taking pictures, or just taking a few moments to do nothing and listen to the world around me, WITH THE TV OFF.

One of my biggest time consumers, aside from keeping a house, running errands, taking care of hubby and yardy is, you guessed it, the COMPUTER!  I have to admit it, I love this thing!  I love what it can do for me and I love what I can do with it.  Without it, most of my communication with the outside world would fall to the wayside.  That's probably very sad!

Ok, I'm getting depressed now.  And NOT having fun!  You see what I mean? 

Back on subject.

We sit in front of the TV having vicarious fun.  It escapes me right now how MSNBC, 24 hours a day, qualifies as fun, but, you know what I mean.

Last evening, we played cards all evening with family.  Now that was fun!  We talked, we ate, we played.  Afterwards, I was worn out, but it was the best "worn out" I've had in a long time.  You see, my life is that unfun!

I guess the point of this is lost somewhere in the writing of it, but I think you get the point.  My life needs more fun.

I think yours just might need that too.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Monday, March 21, 2011

Life's Little Annoyances

I'm still awaiting the arrival of my Purple Martins.  So far I have Bluebirds and Tree Swallows nesting in houses that I've provided.  It's so reassuring to see the birds enjoying their dwellings and it gives me such joy to know that in some small way I helped.

I do still have some predator birds, namely Starlings, trying to disrupt this peaceful and joyous demonstration of life in my backyard.  They are not indigenous to the United States, and seem to only want to cause trouble.

I suppose that this, too, is a lot like 'life'.  I see the Starlings like the little annoyances that come into our lives each day, trying to disrupt our peace and do us harm.  I haven't learned how to out-maneuver these things yet, either in my yard or in my life.  Each day is a new lesson in balancing the beauty and overcoming the threats to our peace.

If I go outside and clap my hands or make a huge noise of some kind, the Starlings will flee.

I wonder if life's little annoyances would do the same thing if I made a little more noise?


Saturday, March 19, 2011

To My Friend, Scott

I learned today that a wonderful artist, writer, human being and friend of mine is having to move, with his family, to a homeless shelter.  This is my email to him.  If you read this, please remember him in your prayers.  He's so very talented and a gifted human being.

I'm so very sad to hear this news.  If I was wealthy I wouldn't hesitate to send you anything you need right now. 

Please keep the faith.  I know God sees and will not leave those who love Him and believe in Him to suffer.  This has to be a test of faith for you and yours.  I've been close to this edge at another time in my life.  He didn't abandon me and I know He won't abandon you.

I don't know why things happen the way they do sometimes, but I do know the One who does know every breath we take and every hair on our head.  I know He loves us and will not leave us.

Please believe and let us know, when you can, how things are going.

You and your family are in my prayers and will stay there ... until!

Love in Him

Monday, March 14, 2011

Spring Is/Was Here in the Valley!

It's been a few days since I blogged.  Sometimes the days just get away from me and, by the end of the day, I don't seem have a thought in my head. 

Another weekend has come and gone.  For me, Saturday was a day of just not feeling well.  I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in both arms/hands, but more pronounced in my right arm.  I had to take a break on Saturday because the pain was just too bad.  It's also allergy time in the Shenandoah Valley and my sinuses were screaming at me all day long.  I really don't like complaining, but sometimes it just helps.

Sunday was a gorgeous day here in the Valley!  Spring cried out to be felt and heard.  The birds in my backyard were abundant and singing all day long.  I haven't seen any more Purple Martins, but they can't be too far away.  I saw my first one on my gourds on March 8th.  It was so exciting!

Another sure sign of Spring was the opening of Willy's Ice Cream, located on the corner of West Main and Lew DeWitt Blvd.  The opening of Willy's is always a welcoming and delicious event.  I got there on Sunday to get my first Twist Cone and the lines were long.

I found myself just wanting to buy flowers to plant and paint to repair.  It's still, officially, late Winter here but Spring is making itself known, as Winter takes one last long, deep, breath.  A sigh of relief for the Maker of Winter and a burst of joy for the Creator of Spring.

In all things, give thanks!

And, I do.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

A Blog a Day?

When I started this blog, I had the intention of writing a Blog a Day!  Thoughts of sitting here, putting thoughts to words on the computer filled my mind, like visions of sugar plums dancing through my head at Christmas time.

I see now how darned difficult it can be to write a Blog a Day.  There are the days when absolutely nothing of interest crosses my mind.  There are also the days when something of interest does cross my mind, but it just won't take form in words.  Then, there are the days when thoughts and ideas crowd my mind and there just isn't enough time to create the Blog that would express them.  At those times, I try to jot down words to remind me of what I'm thinking about.  I look at my notes the next day, when time allows, and see things like 'thoughts of yesterday', 'no one knew', 'what if someone knew', 'going too fast', 'ice cream and alligators!', 'things I would tell President Obama'.  Then, I can't for the life of me, remember what great and worthy themes were in my  head to produce these darn notes.  Some do look pretty interesting, huh?

So, today is a blank day.  Many things happened, but time is pressing.  It's dinner time and I haven't finished the laundry.  I cleaned the floors, but I haven't finished the laundry.  I'm tired as heck, but I haven't finished the laundry.

I think I'll go finish the laundry.

Tomorrow is another day. 

Notes for blogs:
fear of thunder
bad moods and other fairy tales
fabric softener on kitten fur
pet hair, yarn and string

Monday, March 7, 2011

What Do You SEE?

Another writer today reminded me of the ability to see, really see, the world around us.  As a result of a childhood taking care of an older sister, who had epilepsy, I  learned to be hypervigilant at a very young age.  I could tell by the expression on my sister's face when a seizure was coming.  This was important to know, especially since we were alone much of the time.  Where I went, she went.  Where she went, I went.  I could not leave her alone for fear she could hurt herself falling when a seizure occurred.  I also needed to summon help because she was older than me and bigger.  Yes, I learned how to read faces for pain, anger, intention, illness, emotion, safety and many more things.

I still practice this very important gift.  I consider it a gift because reading faces kept me safe at that time and many times later in life.  I also learned to be hypervigilant about everything going on around me.  That too, has been a true gift and blessing.  Even now, I don't/can't turn it off.  I see things that others miss all the time.  When driving, I'm always scanning the horizon, as well as the road ahead.  Yes, it can be done safely!

Why am I writing about this?  I think it's because I realize every day how fortunate I am to have learned this skill.  It was learned for self-protection and for  the protection of others.  I probably shouldn't have had to be hypervigilant as a child, but in my surroundings and environment it was a necessity.

As mothers, we learn to have that second sense where are children are concerned - especially when they are small.  I have, however, been with other mothers who did't seem to have the abilty to be watchful and vigilant with their children.  I worry about those children.

When I'm in a restaurant or at a movie or just out shopping, I see who is in my immediate vicinity and what activities are going on.  I see what people are doing, as well as what they are not doing.

Frequently, at the end of the day, all of this "vigilance" can be tiring, but most of the time I'm not even aware that I'm being vigilant.  Is this an acquired or inherited trait?  I don't know.  I am, however, very glad to have this skill and pray that I keep it as I continue to grow older.  As we get older, this skill is just as necessary and, maybe more necessary, than when we were young and supposedly "carefree".

At times, I wonder who's watching me?  Who's "care taking" me?

Oh, yes!  I know.

He who cares for that tiny little blade of grass also cares for me. 

If find His hypervigilance a true miracle.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Freedom vs Hatred?

Many memories of racial unrest, freedom and hatred, living side by side, flashed through my mind while working with my daughter on an assignment for college that she's doing on Ancestry and our experiences of racism.  It shocked me how many of us didn't question the separate restrooms, water fountains, movie theatre seats, bus seats, etc., when I was growing up.  Here in the south, it was just the way things had always been.


The words "integration" and "segregation" became part of our daily conversations in the early 60's and so did the name "Martin Luther King".  I was a young wife and mother in those early years and began to see how differently the world was going to be for my girls as they grew up.  I was glad things were changing.  I wanted to be out there, fighting the good fight also.  But as I took care of my girls and taught them differently than I was taught, I saw that I was doing "my thing" for the cause of equality for all.

Then came Betty Freidan and and Gloria Steinem and The Feminine Mystique and Ms. Magazine.  Again, teach your children well, as the song, by Graham Nash, goes.

Flash forward, it's the early 2000's, and hatred takes another ghastly toll.  We all remember where we were and what we were doing.  We also remember what we weren't doing.  We weren't watching closely enough.  We had allowed hatred to take root again.  This time from across the seas making it's way to our "peaceful?" shores.

Does hatred attract hatred?  I think so.

Also, peace must attract peace.  Right?

Teach Your Children
by Graham Nash

You who are on the road
Must have a code that you can live by
And so become yourself
Because the past is just a good bye.

Teach your children well,
Their father's hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you'll know by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of tender years,
Can't know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth,
They seek the truth before they can die.

Counter Melody To Above Verse:
Can you hear and do you care and
Cant you see we must be free to
Teach your children what you believe in.
Make a world that we can live in.

Teach your parents well,
Their children's hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you'll know by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

Friday, March 4, 2011

A Nurturing Attitude?

I'm beginning to see how difficult it can be to write a daily blog.  As I go throughout my day I try to pay closer attention to all that I see and do.  To find the deeper meaning in my actions and the actions of those around me.  I'm seeing that this is a tall order for myself.

It seems, far too often, that I go through my days doing what comes next, without much thought given to what that may be.  Today it was adding more gourds to my Purple Martin rack and modifying an existing Purple Martin house that I erected last Spring.  Then there were groceries to buy, things to pick up at the hardware store, like a 4 x 4 and a Bluebird House.  I've noticed quite a few Blue Birds in my yard lately and wanted to see more, give them a home and watch them raise families.  They are such beautiful birds!

I digress.

There was a little time for computer work and now, time for my blog.  I suppose most of this day was about nurturing, and providing sustenance, for God's creatures.  The birds in my yard, the critters in my house (one dog and four cats) and, of course, me and my husband.

As I think about it, nurturing is a good thing.  It requires thought, planning and action.  Those being nurtured don't care too much about the "theory" of nurturing or about who took care that they were, indeed, nurtured.

Why did I do these things?  For myself? For those who needed these things done?  The answer is "yes" to these last two questions.

The next thing is my "attitude" while doing them.  Did I do them prayerfully or thoughtfully and did I give of "myself" while doing them?

This is what I reflect on at the end of the day. Yes, I did give of myself.  Sometimes, I'm sorry to say, I gave with resentment, because I wanted to be doing "other things".

I don't like this about myself.  I don't like being selfish, although there are times when one needs to be selfish.

I've learned, however, that the feeling at the end of the day, when I have done things with an attitude of helpfulness and a heart of love, is a feeling like no other. I pray that I will remember this tomorrow, BEFORE I start my day.

My prayer will be that the Creator and Giver of all things will grant me an attitude of love while living each moment and a prayerful mindfulness while doing the ordinary tasks that fill my day.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


I seem to be complaining a lot lately.  Today it was a morning medical appointment with the cardiologist that turned into 3 hours.  He wanted CT Scans done while I was there.  I had them done and was told to wait for the results.  I waited one hour, only to be told that they just received the reports but couldn't tell me anything until they talked to the doctor, who, of course, was at lunch.  I left!

Then it was take dog to groomer, already 1 hour late, get lunch and make it to another appointment for my husband.  That one lasted an hour, most of it waiting.  Then, time to pick up the pooch.  It was now 4:00 PM and not one return trip home.  The entire day was spent either waiting or coming and going.

I know that there are many, many more problems in life than mine today.  I know this, and I'm working on not letting these things get to  me...but, at the moment, they still do.

We have so many time-savers today.  Most of them are electrical.  I think some human time-savers would be just what the doctor didn't order today! :-)

Thanks for listening!