Monday, June 30, 2008

Vacation is Coming!

I will be on vacation July 3 through 8. I'm so happy! Here are some of the plans:

1. Stay in a 3-bedroom home that has access to Boyd Lake State Park and lake. There is a swim beach, picnic area, fishing places, lots of trees and water, and a play area for kids.
2. The place I am staying is within a short drive of a grocery store, McDonald's, Subway and pizza. We can have Italian food and pizza delivered.
3. There are several reading rooms/stores available for my use.
4. There is a hobby/craft store within a mile.
5. I will be able to attend a good church on Sunday where there is good preaching and good music.
6. I will have great home cooked food and possibly some grilled burgers and dogs.
7. From many places in the area there is a wonderful view of the mountains.
8. I will watch movies and read a great book or two.

The place I am going is my home in Loveland, Colorado. No money, no gas. Here's the interpretation of the vacation plans:

1. My 3 bedroom duplex is only about 1 mile from Boyd Lake State Park.
2. We are near King Soopers and several fast food places and can have delivery from Lorenzo's and Pizza Hut.
3. The library is only about 5 minutes away and there is one book store within that 5 minute distance also.
4. Hobby Lobby is only about 5 minutes away.
5.My church is about 15 minutes away.
6.I will be making the home cooked meals and we will may grill some burgers and dogs.
7.There are some great views of the mountains over by Boyd Lake.
8.I will watch some TV movies and maybe a couple of pay-per-view movies. I plan to read a book about a dog.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

THE ADVENTURES OF BEAR SMITH

By ROBIN, MOMSTHEWORD, KAY, JULIE, QUEEN

It was summer and there wasn't anything to do. Bear had already gone to the library, watched television and cleaned his room. His little sister, Summer, was nagging him to take her to the park down the street. If mom would let him, that was better than doing nothing.

"M-M-Mom, can Summer and me go to the park?" he hollered to his mom who was in the kitchen.

In her most teacher-like voice she answered, "May Summer and I go to the park? And yes, you may go to the park. Take your watch. I don't want you to be gone more than an hour. Keep an eye on Summer at all times. Don't leave her alone. And Bear?"

"Yes, Mom," he sighed with impatience.

"Don't talk to strangers or go with anyone even if you know them. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Mom. We'll be b-b-back in an hour." Summer and Bear walked out the door and down the street. It was going to be a great day after all.

Bear could tell Summer was excited to be going to the park with him. She was skipping and holding his hand. Sometimes he wouldn’t let her hold his hand, but then her feelings got hurt. He didn’t like to make her feel bad.

“Bear, why are you named ‘Bear’?” Summer asked him for 200th time. “Is it because when you were born, you were bare? Or maybe because you were so hairy?”

“Summer, you know why my name is Bear.”

Summer clapped her hands together for joy. She loved this story. “I forget. Tell me.” To her Bear was as brave and strong as a bear. She would go anywhere with him because she wasn’t afraid.

“It’s because the day I was born Mom saw a bear in the woods and she saw another one in a cage on a circus train. She thought that was a sign from God, so she named me Bear.” There were more parts to the story, but Bear didn’t want to get into them since they were almost at the park.

Summer squealed. “Yeah, Bear. Mom named you Bear and you been strong and hairy ever since.” She looked sideways at him to see if he would respond to her teasing.

“Summer, you better start running, ‘cause I’m gonna get you. Grrrrrr.” They ran the rest of the way to the park.

Bear was thinking. He’d get Summer busy playing on the little kid toys and then he would go climb that big oak tree that sat behind the tennis court. He’d still be able to keep an eye on Summer and she could see him.

“Summer, you stay here and play on the swings and slide with the other little kids. I’m gonna go look around.” Summer obediently starting playing with some little girls they knew from the neighborhood.

Bear ran to the big tree and started climbing. “Boy, I can see half the neighborhood from up here!” Bear said excitedly. “This would be a cool place to have a tree house.” Just as Bear was settling onto the biggest limb he could find, he looked down.

“Oh, no!” he cried. He saw his little sister climbing up the tree. “S-S-Summer, I told you to play with the little kids. What are you doin’ here?”

He started down toward her about the same time she began to scream, “Bear! Bear! I’m stuck. I can’t go up or down. Help me!”

Bear was really afraid for Summer. She was just a little kid. He prayed, “Jesus, please keep my feet from getting t-t-tangled up. P-P-please don’t let me fall.” Bear continued to climb down slowly. He didn’t want to scare Summer even more because she was already near tears. He reached her and grabbed her by the arm. He then carefully worked his way around her, concentrating on keeping control of his big feet, and then he settled himself on the next big limb below.

“Take hold of my hand, Summer. Let go of the tree. I’ll keep you safe,” he coaxed quietly. She cautiously reached down to take his hand. He talked her down onto the limb where he stood with his legs braced. “You know, Summer. This is not exactly the f-f-first t-t-time you’ve gotten s-s-stuck in a tree!”

Summer hung her head and answered him, “I know Bear, but I love to climb trees, ‘specially with you. You saved me. You’re just like God,”

“No, only G-G-God is just like God. He’s the one who used me to help you.” Bear was trembling inside because he had been so afraid.

****************************
The next day Bear was running over by the school. He saw Greggie standing near the school doors with his friend Clyde and some other boys. “Have a nice trip” Greggie said as he stuck out his foot and tripped Bear.

“See you next fall!” his friend Clyde joined in. Their laughter burned in Bear’s ears. He didn’t trip, of course. That stupid Greggie shoved him.

Earlier today Greggie had taken the money Bear had saved up for the candy store. Yesterday he had made Summer cry. Bear was getting sick of this.

Bear grabbed his friend, Tommy’s extended hand and pulled himself up. Tommy darted his eyes between Greggie and Bear and slowly backed away. “Let’s go, man.”

“You chicken, Amigo? Don’t you want to show me what you’re made of, cucaracha?” Greggie sneered and then looked to his buddies for approval. They laughed on cue.

“Let’s go.” Tommy said again.

“You know, T-T-Tommy, I don’t th-think I want to go.”

“T-t-t-t-t-t-t. Listen to da widdle baby try to talky walky.” Greggie strutted around in front of his friends.

“You are a big b-b-b-bully and I hate you!” Bear dove for Greggie and knocked him to the ground before he knew what he was doing. Greggie’s friends began yelling and Bear didn’t know if Tommy was even still around.

Bear just hit Greggie as hard as he could until without knowing how, he was on the ground and Greggie was on top of him. He saw a glimpse of Tommy in the background just before his vision went red and his nose crunched. He screamed and kicked and felt Greggie pulling at him.

“That’s enough, boys!” He saw Mr. Binkly, the school principal, tug Greggie up. Bear struggled to his feet and cupped his bleeding nose with his hands. Tommy looked pale, but he had stuck around. That’s what counted. Bear nodded at him to let him know he was okay.

A hand grasped his collar and Mr. Binkly guided him to the office. Boy, he was in for it now. A boy wasn’t supposed to get in trouble at school in the summer. But he sure let that Greggie know something, didn’t he?

**************************************
After a rough week dealing with Greggie, Bear’s worst enemy, Bear didn’t feel like listening when his Sunday school teacher started talking about loving your enemies. It was the last thing on his mind to even consider caring about Greggie after all he’d done to hurt him over the years, but Bear was a good boy who really wanted to live for Jesus, so he listened in spite of himself.

Mrs. Johnson told the class, “There will be times when people do things that cause you pain, but we need to follow the example of Jesus and forgive them and love them anyhow.”

A girl from in the class interrupted to share an example, “My little brother sometimes does things to annoy me, but mom told me that he would stop if I included him more when I play. And you know what? It works!”

Mrs. Johnson thanked Cindy and continued, “In Mark 11:25 Jesus said, ‘And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.’”

The final bell rang and the students began preparing to find their parents. Mrs. Johnson called order and closed in prayer.Bear sat in his chair as the other children scurried off. He was troubled by the verse Mrs, Johnson shared and knew that he needed to forgive Greggie because Jesus forgave him, but he didn’t know what to do.

Mr. Johnson appeared at the classroom door to greet his wife and noticed that Bear looked sad. He asked Bear if he needed to talk. Bear shook his head while a tear escaped down his cheek. Mr. Johnson put his hand on Bear’s shoulder and led him to a quiet corner to talk.

Bear shared, “Greggie p-p-picks on me all the time and I really hate him, but today Mrs. Johnson told us that we have to f-f-forgive our enemies because Jesus forgave us. It makes sense, but I don’t see how I can do it.”

Mr. Johnson talked with Bear during the church service upstairs. He said, “Bear, there are times when people hurt us because they have been hurt so much they don’t know any other way to act. Sometimes they just need to feel and know the love of Jesus and it will make all the difference.”

Finally Bear decided that he wanted to pray and ask Jesus to forgive his bad attitude toward Greggie. He prayed, “Lord, please help me to f-f-forgive Greggie when he does mean things to me and help me to show kindness to him instead. Help m-m-me to be the boy you want me to be even when it’s hard. Thank you Jesus, for loving and forgiving me and help me to love and forgive all I meet. Amen.”

Bear looked up at Mr. Johnson and threw his arms around him and thanked him for listening and praying and ran upstairs to tell his mom the good news.

************************************
Bear was finally able to sneak away from Summer for awhile. She had fallen asleep under the picnic table in the backyard. He asked Mom if it was alright for him to go to the park by himself. She said okay but also added all her “be carefuls” and “don’ts” that he had heard every time. He agreed and started up the sidewalk.

“Boy, it’s cool to be here by myself,” he whispered. “I love S-S-Summer but s-s-sometimes I just want to be s-s-somewhere without her for a little while.”

It was fun playing on the swings by himself but impossible to play on the seesaw. And He could run as fast as he wanted to make the merry-go-round go around without having to worry about his little sister.

Bear got hot and decided to go sit under the big oak tree behind the tennis courts. He had just settled down when he saw a dog scurrying through the bushes on the other side of the park fence. He jumped up and climbed over the fence. He was pretty certain that the dog was holding up one of his legs so maybe it was injured. Bear plowed his way through the bushes.

Bear suddenly felt himself falling. He didn’t have time to grab hold of any of the bushes to stop his fall. He landed hard and hit his head. When he sat up he saw that he was in a hole. He stood and realized that he couldn’t reach the top to pull himself up. He started yelling at the top of his lungs, “Help! Help! S-S-Somebody help me. I’m in a hole in the w-w-woods behind the tennis courts. Please come h-h-help me!”

Bear sat down and brushed the tears from his cheeks. He couldn’t be seen crying by anyone who might come to help him. He stood up and yelled again, only not quite as loud as before. He thought to himself, “No one is going to hear me. No one was anywhere near here in the park. Mom is going to get really scared when I don’t come home but she’ll come looking for me. She knows I’m at the park, well, kinda at the park.”

His head jerked up. He had heard a voice calling, “Where are you?” Oh boy, thought Bear, someone had heard him, and the voice sounded vaguely familiar.

Bear heard someone pushing bushes out of the way. He was a little scared it might be some of the boys who teased him so much. A little blond head of hair peeked over the edge of the hole. It was Summer! Bear cried out, "Oh Summer, it’s you. How did you find me?"

Summer said, "Mom told me that were at the park and I could come find you. ’Just be careful and don't speak to any strangers', she said in a sing-song voice imitating her mother. “So I heard you yelling, and I could tell you was scared.” She reached down and grabbed Bear's hand and held onto a bush with the other. Bear was able to climb up enough to get hold of the bush and pull himself up.

"Oh, thank you, S-S-Summer,” Bear said almost tearfully, "You s-s-saved my life. Let’s go home right away.”

******************************
Bear whistled as he biked down the street. It was a lovely morning and Summer was at a friend’s house, so he was free.

“Bear! Bear, come here,” Greggie’s voice called from somewhere.

Great. Just what he needed. He looked around to see where Greggie was.

“Over here, behind the bush. I need help.”

Bear dropped his bike and slowly walked in the direction of Greggie’s voice, looking around as he did. This could be an ambush. When he came to the other side of the bush he saw Greggie sitting on the ground with a giant dog. The dog’s head filled Greggie’s lap.

“What’s that?”

“He’s a Mastiff. I’ve seen them in books. Isn’t he awesome?”

Bear nodded and took a step back.

“He’s gentle. These are good dogs. But he’s scared.” Greggie stroked the dog’s ear. “He’s hurt. I don’t know what happened, but he’s hurt.”

Bear widened his eyes as he saw blood on the dog’s back legs. “W-W-What are you going to do?”
“I need you to bring me some water. And do you have a wagon?”

“We can’t get him into a wagon. He must weigh five hundred pounds!” Bear retrieved his water bottle from his bike and handed it to Greggie.

“Do you have a better idea?”

“Does he have a collar? That kind of dog must belong to someone.”

“No, he doesn’t have one. He might belong to someone. I don’t know.”

“Then we need to get my parents. We need someone strong to help us.”

Greggie wiped his eyes quickly then put on a tough face. Bear pretended he didn’t see. “I wanted to do this myself.” Greggie said. “I wanted to do something good all by myself.”

Bear looked at his feet. Greggie wanted to do something good? Seems like he had plenty of opportunities to try that.

“Go ahead. Get your dad. He’ll help, I bet. I know mine won’t.”

Bear looked back as he peddled away and saw Greggie resting his head on the broad forehead of his new friend. He shook his head in amazement.

********************************
Bear and Tommy were going to Scout Camp for the first time. They were the oldest boys to go to camp who had never been before, and some of the other campers started to tease them about it.

"Watch out for snakes!" cried one boy, "Yeah! Watch out for snakes and bats!" echoed his freckled-face friend.

"Don't pay any attention to them, Bear" Tommy said as they were setting up their tent. "They are just stupid anyway." Tommy added.

But Bear had never slept out in the real woods before, and the teasing boys did make him a little afraid of what might happen once it got dark. He thought those boys were gonna try to scare them during the night...he felt sure of it.

That night after everyone had settled down to sleep, Bear found that he just couldn't close his eyes. He really tried, but shadows and noises kept him awake.All of a sudden, something thumped against the side of his tent.

Bear grabbed his flashlight and decided that he was sick and tired of those other boys teasing him. So he slowly crawled to the tent flap and got ready to pounce. "Someone is gonna be surprised all right, but it won't be me," Bear thought.

Bear heard shuffling coming closer to the tent flap, and when he thought they were right on the other side he turned on his light, jumped out of the tent and gave a huge Indian war cry, all at the same time!

Bear's war cry went up five notches when he realized that he was looking into the fuzzy brown face of a "real" bear! The animal tripped over backwards, and ran out of camp to the safety of the trees, knocking over several tents on the way.

After the camp got settled back down and some calm had resumed, Tommy patted Bear on the back and said, "It's not your fault Bear. They never said to watch out for bears!" They both laughed.

*********************************
The end for now

Thursday, June 26, 2008

13 Thursday Last Words of Famous People

1.Yes, it's tough, but not as tough as doing comedy.
When asked if he thought dying was tough.~~ Edmund Gwenn, actor, d. September 6, 1959

2.Am I dying or is this my birthday?
When she woke briefly during her last illness and found all her family around her bedside.~~ Lady Nancy Astor, d. 1964

3.Now comes the mystery.~~ Henry Ward Beecher, evangelist, d. March 8, 1887

4.Friends applaud, the comedy is finished.~~ Ludwig van Beethoven, composer, d. March 26, 1827

5.I am not the least afraid to die.~~ Charles Darwin, d. April 19, 1882

6.I've never felt better.~~ Douglas Fairbanks, Sr., actor, d. December 12, 1939

7.Why do you weep. Did you think I was immortal?~~ Louis XIV, King of France, d. 1715

8.Here am I, dying of a hundred good symptoms.~~ Alexander Pope, writer, d. May 30, 1744

9.I owe much; I have nothing; the rest I leave to the poor.~~ Fran├žois Rabelais, writer, d. 1553

10.Don't let it end like this. Tell them I said something.~~ Pancho Villa, Mexican revolutionary, d. 1923

11.I have offended God and mankind because my work did not reach the quality it should have.~~ Leonardo da Vinci, artist, d. 1519

12.Either that wallpaper goes, or I do.~~ Oscar Wilde, writer, d. November 30, 1900

13.Go away. I'm all right.~~ H. G. Wells, novelist, d. 1946

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A Pattern of My Life

Ever since I became an adult I have had a proclivity for spilling things (food) on my shirt. Someone once told me it's because there is a shelf to catch things. Today while at work I dropped pieces of food out of my burrito three times. Afterwards I scrubbed my shirt twice: once with just water and once with water and soap. The spots are still there. I am a thing of great beauty today for sure.

I have thought about making a product of beautiful stickers that look like flowers, geometric shapes, words, little animal, etc., that could be put on a person's shirt to cover the spots temporarily. Some of the words could be "spot", "messy person", "mind your own business", "you are way too close", "great beauty." I would sell these stickers on TV for $9.99.

If I really knew how to market these stickers, I might really try to do it!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Let's Start Writing our Story

There are several of you who indicated on another blog entry that you would like to help write a short story for children. I think this story may also be written more for adults and about children. I said I would write the opening paragraphs, name the main characters with some of their distinguishing characteristics, give several scenes so you each could choose one, and then write the final paragraph(s). Actually, choose two scenes you would like to write in order of preference, and then I'll assign them on a first-come-first-serve basis. Here goes.

Main character: Bear Smith. Ten years old. Somewhat of a klutz. Always looking for adventure. Mostly obedient to parents. Loves Jesus. Helps take care of his five-year-old sister. Sometime stutters. Physical description: brown eyes, short for his age, freckle-faced, light brown hair, big feet for his age, scar on left forearm, bony knees and elbows.

Sister: Summer Smith. Five years old. Likes to follow Bear around. Likes to climb and get stuck. Asks strange questions. Physical description: thin blond shoulder-length hair, brown eyes, stubby nose, skinny.

Bear's best friend: Tommy Valdez. Ten years old. Hispanic. Good at sports. Also likes adventure. Parents don't pay him much attention. Physical description: black hair, dark brown eyes, very clear skin, scar on forehead, tall.

Bear's enemy: Greggie Ross. Eleven years old. Bully. Thinks he's is charge of everything. Steals. Calls names. Very tender toward dogs. Physical description: shaggy blond hair, blue eyes, braces, big mouth, no neck, bigger than other kids his age.

Mom: Marie Smith. About 40 years old. Her mother passed away last summer. Cries often. Bakes wonderful desserts but burns most everything else. Loves her kids and worries. Teaches Sunday School. Loves God and husband. Physical: Short dark brown hair, brown eyes, 30 pounds overweight, 5'3" tall.

Dad: Scott Smith. About 40 years old. Works 60 hours a week for information technology business. Doesn't go to church but used to. Drives a car with problems. Sometimes is gruff with his children and wife. Physical: Blond hair nearly shaved, brown eyes, thin, tall--6'3".

Peripheral possible people: not main characters, but may be included with Bear's group or with Greggie's group. You name them--don't use too much description of them. Mother may have a friend of your choice.

Possible scenes:
1. How Bear got his name.
2. Greggie and his friends have an altercation with Bear and his friends.
3. Summer climbs a tree and is rescued or comforted by Bear.
4. Bear falls down a hole.
5. Bear meets a bear.
6. Lesson in Sunday School on "Love your enemies" and how that affects his relationship with Greggie.
7. Greggie, the hurt dog and Bear.
8. Tommy falls on his bicycle and has to go to hospital.
9. Bear and Tommie get lost in the woods.

I don't want to have all these incidents in the same short story, but each of you (Jen, Moms, Kay, Julie and Robin) will choose two to begin with, and then write 3-5+ paragraphs about the one you are assigned. Then we should have a good story. I know we will have different styles of writing and that's what we want. Write freely. Please post your part of the story as a comment on my blog. Then I will add it to the rest of the story.


THE ADVENTURES OF BEAR SMITH

It was summer and there wasn't anything to do. Bear had already gone to the library, watched television and cleaned his room. His little sister, Summer, was nagging him to take her to the park down the street. If mom would let him, that was better than doing nothing.

"M-M-Mom, can Summer and me go to the park?" he hollered to his mom who was in the kitchen.

In her most teacher-like voice she answered, "May Summer and I go to the park? And yes, you may go to the park. Take your watch. I don't want you to be gone more than an hour. Keep an eye on Summer at all times. Don't leave her alone. And Bear?"

"Yes, Mom," he sighed with impatience.

"Don't talk to strangers or go with anyone even if you know them. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Mom. We'll be b-b-back in an hour." Summer and Bear walked out the door and down the street. It was going to be a great day after all.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Writing a Story Together

I have an idea. Would any of you be interested in helping me write a story for children? I would write the opening paragraphs. Then others who are interested would one at a time write about an event of your choosing to further plot. I suppose I would write the ending. Let me know in the next day or two if you are interested, and we'll get started. It could be fun.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

When I was a little girl, my best friend was the Tooth Fairy. I would say things like, "The Tooth Fairy and I are going to play dolls;" "The Tooth Fairy is taking me to the store." Apparently I talked about the Tooth Fairy a lot.

One day my mother told me there was no such thing as a Tooth Fairy. It broke my heart. I couldn't believe it, not after we had meant so much to each other. At that time, she was the love and center of my strange little life. I was bereft for awhile, but I guess I got over it. The Tooth Fairy and I haven't even talked for years. I wonder if she is still out there.

Also when I was a little girl, one day I suddenly had problems swallowing. I couldn't get cereal down. My mom even bought some peanut candy for me, but I couldn't get it down. Over the week or two that I couldn't swallow, I lost weight and looked haggard. Finally my mom took me to the doctor. She thought maybe I had a growth in my throat.

The doctor looked in my throat, but there was nothing wrong. As soon as he said the actual words, "There's nothing wrong with you," I was cured. It was a miracle. I just needed to hear the words from someone who knew.

Sometimes I think about trying to get that problem back--not being able to swallow--so I could lose some weight. But then I think about the problems I could have if I really made myself not be able to swallow, and it makes me nervous, so I don't do it.

I'm sure I was a strange child, but I think everyone probably was. How about you? Will you confess to doing something strange as a child?

Monday, June 16, 2008

Fathers

I didn't write about dads yesterday. I never did get on the computer. Even though my husband would have shared, I didn't ask him to. I did fix him fried chicken dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy, corn on the cob, and salad--his very favorite meal. He was very happy. He thanked me several times and told me how good it was several times. You would think I would cook this meal more often for him. He is a good dad to our two children.

I've written about my dad before. I feel like when I was a child I didn't know my dad very well. He was pretty strict, and I was somewhat afraid of him. I got to know him better when I was grown. He was a good man. I'm glad he was my father.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Waving Skirts

My son was in a Christian school Christmas program when he was in kindergarten or 1st grade. There was a set of twins named Timora and Johna also in the program. They had new skirts for the program (when I was little, my mother wouldn't let me wear skirts because I had no hips to hold them up). The girls had a lot of fun with those skirts. During the program they slipped their arms inside the skirts at the waistband and then proceeded to raise their arms and lift the entire fronts of the skits in the air. They were waving with their skirts.

Here all the kids were singing songs about Jesus and His birth. The teachers were sitting on the front pew going crazy about the waving skirts. One of the teachers finally got up on stage and told the girls to stop. They had been oblivious about causing any problem. They were just having a good time with new skirts.

Now here I am 26 or so years later, and I still have that memory. Those girls made quite an impression.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

13 Thursday Themes of My LIfe

1. Teaching/school
2. Children
3. Marriage
4. Church
5. God
6.People
7. Reading
8. Piano
9.Moving
10.My sister
11. Family
12. Bible
13. Eating/dieting

What are some themes of your life?

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Getting Ready

Does the process of getting ready in the morning irritate you or make you tired? It does me. I get really tired of the routine--shower, wash hair, dry hair, curl hair, put on powder, lotion, cologne, brush teeth, take meds/vities, put on all the clothes, put on makeup and earrings, pack lunch, leave for work. The process used to include feeding the dog and getting the kids ready.

I think cutting my hair really short and giving up makeup could be done, but the other things all really need to be done.

Any solutions?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Married for a Long, Long, Long Time

June 10 is my anniversary!

I got married when I was 23. The first several years were a little rough because even though I was a REALLY nice person, I wasn't good at taking care of someone else or in letting someone else be the boss.

After those first few years, the next several were pretty rough (I didn't stutter). My husband and I are opposites in many ways--he has the spiritual gift of prophecy (seeing things in black and white) and I have the spiritual gift of mercy (seeing all sides and the motivations); he likes only certain foods (although he has changed a lot over the years) and I like nearly everything (it's a sad, sad thing); he doesn't really like to plan ahead on some things, and I do. We have different views on many things. He can be confrontational and I have a very hard time with being confrontational.

But guess what? We have survived as a married couple for 36 YEARS. I am amazed. My husband has been a wonderful man. He has been a great provider. He's been a good father and husband. He was always good to his parents and to mine, and he has always been generous to me. (36 YEARS!)

I think some keys to our long marriage are these: forgive and let irritations go; remind yourself of your commitment; have fun and make each other laugh; be tolerant; remember the things you have in common (for us children, church work, music, our families, all these years of memories, dogs, cats, cars, suppers, bills, trips, arguments). We have made each mad (not so much anymore), we have argued, laughed, cried, shared and helped each other through very hard times. He is my rock.

I LOVE MY HUSBAND--36 YEARS--A REALLY, REALLY LONG TIME.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Strong Opinions

I rarely express strong opinions. I think that is for several reasons including the way I was brought up, my first-kid place among the children in the family (first kids either have strong, opinionated personalities or are pleasers--I'm a pleaser), and my main spiritual gift of mercy--I can see other people's viewpoints and motivations, and I'm not good at confrontation. But this is not to say that I don't have strong opinions about many things.

As indicated in Scripture, God is a male and is the absolute Creator and Ruler of the universe.

Jesus Christ is God and God's Son and is the only Savior of mankind from its sins and hell.

Abortion is wrong in all circumstances.

Children are the greatest treasures and need the most care in every way that an adult can give.

A good marriage takes a lot of tolerance and forgiveness.

The Bible is absolutely true and always applicable for our lives.

In this life only what is done for God counts.

Heaven and hell are real places.

Getting older is hard work.

The person who is the closest to the ideals of Scripture will be the person I vote for president.

I do not think a person or a group of people should be singled out for anything because of their sexuality. I do think all people should have equality under the law but not for belonging to a certain sexual group. That should be moot.

An unsaved and a saved person should not get married.

Worldly activities should stay out of the church.

Old people (older than me) need help and understanding, even when they are driving too slowly.

These are just some of my strong opinions. And now I am worrying about causing offense. I don't mean to cause offense, but I also realize someone will always be offended by another person's opinions when they differ from his/her own. Also I believe many of these thoughts are more than opinions: many are just the truth.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

13 Thursday Found Things

I cleaned out a drawer at work yesterday. These are some of the things I found.

1. Cards from the past 5+ years
2. Spilled salt
3.Many plastic forks, spoons and knives
4. Many kinds of note paper
5. Three sets of stationery
6.Condiments like ketchup, mustard, soy sauce, Arby's Horsey Sauce
7.A good luck ceramic frog (threw away)
8.A red dress pin (for breast cancer?) (gave away)
9.A little soapstone box shaped like a heart (gave away)
10. Eyeglass cleaner
11. Many Gospel tracts
12. Cute stickers
13.A nativity pin.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Mistakes

Boy, I hate making mistakes. Earlier this week I proofread a monthly article the Sheriff's PR person writes. It's very informative and funny. People all over the country read it. I usually proofread for grammar, punctuation and sometimes for content. Well this week I let some information stay in the article that I should have questioned (whether people's email addresses are public information--they aren't). I had heard a part of a discussion before the release and thought that the woman writing the article knew something I didn't know, and so I didn't question having that info in the article. Well, I should have. Now the article has been released and read throughout the county, the country and in some foreign countries.

I guess a correction will have to made in next month's article. The good news is that the email addresses were not released, just the emails themselves. I think the correction will mostly fix everything.

The thing is, I really want and try to be perfect, but I am so far from it. I guess I have to just continue trying. The only other option is not to try at all. I look forward to the day "when He (Christ) shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is." At that time we probably will only see Him and His perfection. Our perfection will hardly matter to us.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Kindness

The Five Kind Things Meme works like this:
List five kind things you do for yourself.
List five kind things you do for your closest friend, spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend or child.
List five kind things you have done for a stranger.
List five kind things you do for fun.
List five people you are tagging with this meme.

Five kind things I do for myself:
1.I blog.
2.I play piano at church (hopefully for God too).
3.I talk to my daughter on the phone.
4.I tease people.
5.I buy snacks I like.

Five kind things I do for my friends, husband or child:
1.I sympathize with my husband when he doesn't feel well.
2. I show concern for people and ask about their problems (some say "minding their business").
3. I buy a lot of things at the store that my husband and son like.
4. I cook what they like.
5. I collect money at work for people's decade birthdays and going away gifts.

Five kind things I have done for a stranger:
1.Twice I have rescued children. Once time a little girl (under 3 yoa) was getting ready to step off the curb into traffic. Another time a child was leaving the store in the mall where her mother was. I made her stay there and wait.
2.I have given money to people who stand on street corners. (I figure it's up to them to do the right thing, so I don't worry about them using it for alcohol, etc.)
3. I have offered some of my accrued sick days for people who are seriously ill who work for the County.
4.I have given money and food for the hungry.
5. I have given out Gospel tracks.

Five things I do for fun:
1. Read
2. Watch TV
3. Blog
4. Play piano
5. Make people laugh

Five people I tag:
1. Sigrid
2. Cecil
3. Avigavil
4. Beulah
5.Delmar

And all the rest of you are welcome to play, too. Just let me know if you do!