Sunday, September 29, 2019

Just Share It:Elisa Morgan

                                                                              Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                                               everyday is a journey.

There is nothing so small but that we hono
 God by asking his guidance of it,

I wish I could say that I have found this lovely article, but actually it was sent to me via e-mail from Grandma Barb. How did she know that I have been struggling with negativity? Whenever that happens, I revert to comparing myself or my life to everyone else's. Look at that person over there, my dream just happened in their life. Or Her life seems so together. Her children are perfect. Her marriage. It doesn't matter what it may be, I am too busy comparing to someone else what I think I don't have. This article reminds me so much of the problem we all have with thinking the grass is always greener on the other side. It never crosses our minds that perhaps that person is thinking the same thing about us? I like this author a lot. I think I will subscribe to her blog and so should you. Enjoy.
Everybody's Got Something
       By Elisa Morgan
She walked ahead of me into the meeting, finishing a call and then tucking her phone into her designer bag. Adorable outfit. Long and perfectly coiffed curls. Just the right amount of polish over her being. Across the table from me, I noted that when she opened her mouth to speak, she paused just a breath before making her point - an effort that gave even more wisdom to her already brilliant contribution. And before leaving, I watched as she intentionally made eye-contact with each participant around our gathering of eight, punctuating their value with her effort.
Super Spiritual Gal.
I imagined her driving home in her stylin' car, slipping into her tidy garage and holding an afternoon Bible study with her neighborhood posse before assembling a color-balanced, healthy dinner for her family.
What I'd find out later over coffee grown cold on the table between us is that the call she took right before the meeting was her teen confessing he'd been caught vaping at school. The day before her husband had lost his job. And she struggled with a self-image issue which she had to wrestle to the floor of her car before she gathered herself together to face us all. No, she didn't glide home, she crawled. And there, behind a closed and bolted door, she wept. Alone.
I learned a lesson I won't soon forget.
Everybody's got something.
Every. Body.
Some. Thing.
You've got something too, don't you? Something niggling at you right this minute as you read along. That inky dark thought in your heart that keeps stealing out of the corner you've shoved it into - oblivious to your barked command to "STAY!" A shame over some past mistake that accuses you freshly each morning. A selfishness which focuses your attention in on you and yours rather than others and theirs when you really really really want to be directed outwards.
Beyond the internal heart issues that tie you up in knots, there are the real-life unavoidable struggles that weigh down your everyday. A child struggling to make friends. A less-than-invested spouse. A betraying coworker. A needy parent. A health challenge. A money debacle. The latest world threat on the news.
Just the other night I awoke with my head spinning about a work-related relationship. Should I just accept the way things were headed? Was God asking me to initiate a conversation to bring clarity? Sleep hovered all around me, but my body wouldn't yield. When I finally crawled out of bed in the morning and padded to my computer to begin my day, I'd returned to my unrealistic expectation that I was the ONLY one who had such struggles. Or any struggles at all.
I tracked through emails, interpreting each request and update in a win/lose equation. They had it RIGHT. I had it WRONG. I scrolled through social media, pausing at the arms-around-each-other photos of the Famous, swallowing the pretense that they actually are day-to-day pals who have each other's backs twenty-four-seven and so never have issues.
Until I remembered that everybody has something.
Every. Body.
Some. Thing.
Her cancer diagnosis is not easier - nor harder necessarily - than their wayward teen's rejection. Their carried-to-term but still-born-delivered baby is just as devastating to them as her uninsured flooded home is to her. Life is hard. And everybody has something.
Embracing this reality that is so often invisible from the outside layers of our lives has nudged me forward with grace towards both those I know well and those I don't know at all. Because I don't know anyone completely just as no one knows all of me. We try, all of us. We do the best we can with what appears in our days. The good and the not-so-good. But somehow, we swallow the myth that others only have good. That they are above the not-so-good because of how they pray, what they believe or how they choose to avoid the not-so-good. Oh, that we too could be so lucky - blessed? - to follow their formula. Then we too could avoid the not-so-good!
The thing is ... everybody has something.
Every. Body.
Some. Thing.
A long time ago - in fact just before he left the planet - Jesus said, "In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world," (John 16:33). A few paragraphs earlier, Jesus promised, "I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you," (John 14:18).
In this world we WILL have trouble. Not might. Not could. Not possibly. But WILL. When we do, we will not be alone in it.
Everybody has something - and Someone with them in it.
Every. Body.
Some. Thing.
Some. One.
Let's remember that as we interact with each other each day.

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Love Thy Neighbor

                                                  Everyday is a brand new day, everyday is a journey

My minde to me a kingdom is:
Such perfect joy therein I finde
As far exceeds all earthly blisse
That God or nature hath assignede.

When we became apartment dwellers back in 2011, we welcomed the change with open arms. After so many years of being home owners, it felt good not to worry about the daily upkeep. There were no more woes of weekly lawn care or cleaning out the gutters. When the snow storms hit, we came home to shoveled sidewalks. If something major broke, we just dialed l-a-n-d-lo-r-d. It felt good to be an apartment dweller.

For several years, we were blessed with great neighbors. Everyone cared and respected each other. Then one day, someone moved out and a neighbor from hell moved in. That's all it took to disrupt the harmony.

There are people out there who only care about themselves and show little or no respect for everyone else. They are not mean people who are intentionally being disrespectful to their neighbors, they just see themselves. It's their needs that matter. For instance, a neighbor of ours left her laundry in the washing machine for several days. It never occurred to her that maybe the other tenants would need to use the laundry facilities. Or they vacuum at 2 a.m., who does that?

Since moving into this place, I have come to realize there is a pattern to these good neighbors/bad neighbors. First, one has good neighbors, then a bad one moves in and so on and on. The sequence actually rotates them in and out like a lottery.

We are in the bad neighbor stage. Except this time, we actually have two of them, one above us and one below us. We are sandwiched in between them and when is quiet, then the other starts up. It never ends, folks. Never.

Occasionally, my mood shifts to the dark side and I vow never to bother making friends with any of the neighbors. When they move in, I won't introduce myself or even care what they are about. Of course, that feeling never continues. One cannot change character. I have always made it a priority to knock on new neighbors door and welcome them to the building. If they have children, we remember them on holidays, especially the single moms. Boy, do I have a heart for single moms. Always have and always will. Extra servings laying around? It's going to that single mom. Why should I stop because of a few rotten apples?

Have a blessed day everyone.

Friday, September 27, 2019

The Buddha Effect

                                                 Everyday is a brand new day, everyday is a journey.    

Love divine has seen and counted
Every tear it caused to fall;
And the storm which Love appointed
Was its choicest gift of all.

Boy, am I missing a hot, long soak in the tub! When I was younger and actually could enjoy a leisurely soak, I didn't. Now that my body cannot do so because of my bad joints, I really miss it. Even if by some miracle I would be able to get into the tub, getting out was even harder. Bending and lifting these legs can be very painful. They sometimes feel like blocks of cement.

The last time I stayed by my son's home, they prepared a nice hot tubful of bubbles for me. They have this big and beautiful soaker tub that I felt for sure I could get into with no problem. It was a little tricky, but I got in and relaxed, enjoying every minute of it. I even used those new bath balls that had glitter in it.

When I was done, I pulled the plug and attempted to hoist myself out. Yeah, attempted. I tried and tried, folks. I tried in every direction and in every position. I wasn't getting out. I sat there, in all my naked Buddha glory, ready to cry. How in the world am I going to get out? I almost cried out for my Aubs., but looked down at my Buddha state. No one needs to see all of that!

Only by the Grace of God, was I able to hoist my body out of that tub, vowing to never attempt such a feat again. My soaking in the tub days were over, folks. It saddens me, you know. When we have a really tough day at work, we dream of sinking into a hot tub full of suds. We dream of soothing away the tired muscles with a hot soak. Alas, those days are over.

Oh Yeah, the glitter from those bath balls? Well, let's just say it will be there for awhile as a reminder that grandma Lottie was here!

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Monday, September 23, 2019

Reflections On Money

                                                                         Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                                         everyday is a journey.

The parting sun sends out a glow
Across the placid bay,
Touching with glory all the show--
A breeze! Up helm! Away!
Careening to the wind, they reach,
With laugh and call, the shore.
They've left their footprints on the beach,
But them I hear no more.
--Richard Henry Dana.

Situations with money are totally split in our family. Some of us have done well and some quite the opposite. Some of us knew right from the start how to handle money and others learned the hard way. Of course, there are those that will never learn at all or think they need to. I really don't know too much about my paternal side, but the part I do know, it's pretty much not different from the maternal.

I think that the financial status of people are basically the same in every household and every family. One thing for certain, we do what we know. That means our parents were the role models for everyday living and handling of life. We either took after them in a good way or a bad way. Or perhaps, we learned from their experience and tried to better ourselves in that area. 

When it comes to money, I think we learn more from experience and we get better as we age. Now that my children are grown, I actually have some money to manage. I also have a newfound respect for it, something I didn't when I was younger. My only regret is that it took me so long to learn how to manage my money. 

This year I have finally graduated to that other level that I have only dreamed about. After all these bad monetary decisions, I finally have made some sound ones by providing for my future. I have also begun my journey to being debt free. You have no idea how liberating that feels, such a powerful feeling. For the first time in my life, I am in charge of my money. Yes, that's very powerful.

So I am be a bit late, but it's a lot better than where I was even ten years ago. My financial adviser said it best, don't worry about the past, it's where you are going now that matters.

Have a blessed day everyone.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Working out the Kinks

It has been quite an interesting last two weeks. Even though it may seem there has been silence on my end, things have been moving forward. For instance, my work for the past several years has been pretty monotonous. I could do this particular position with my eyes closed. It has not provided any kind of challenge to me and I can honestly say it has been the easiest position I have held.

These past two weeks have been invigorating, revitalizing, a regular breath of fresh air. They have added more work to my plate and I love it. I love being busy where the time flies by in a heartbeat. I look up and it's lunchtime. I look up again and there's an hour left before the shift ends. I love what I am doing now. All these years of a dry spell in my career where I felt I wasn't working in my full potential. Does that make sense?

There's just one problem. We have to work out the kinks. Like many things in life, we have to perfect an idea or a project until it can be fully functioning. Right now, the computers are not working properly or the program needs to be re-adjusted. Sometimes we have a good day and sometimes we are exhausted mentally. It can go either way.

The point here is that I feel alive for the first time in a very long time. I can only imagine what the future may hold for me here. There is a possibility that perhaps I may enjoy the remaining years until my retirement, whether early or not. I am not afraid of work, I just want it to be interesting. We all spend so much time at our jobs, shouldn't we at least enjoy it?

 Not to long ago, my son made a remark to my grandson, "Grandma doesn't like her job." Well, that kind of stuck with me. My negativity towards my job situation has evoked an image of me that wasn't exactly pleasant. I cannot blame anyone for where I have ended up in life, except myself. I work in a factory. I am a blue collar worker. There are no degrees next to my name. Believe it or not, it's okay with me. I provided for my children and now, for myself. That's all I can ask for. I am content with all of it, maybe a bit bored, but still grateful.

Have a blessed day everyone.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Just A Friendly Reminder

                                                     Everyday is a brand new day, everyday is a journey.

Whate'er the care which breaks thy rest,
Whate'er the wish that swells thy breast;
Spread before God that wish, that care,
And change anxiety to prayer.

Back in the day when I was young, I remember reading an interview done with a particular tennis star. I cannot remember their name, but they were very popular back then. In this interview he was quoted saying that the hardest thing to do is to finish a game you know you have lost.

Whenever I have a difficult week, this comes back to me, reminding me that I need to finish off the week. It doesn't matter how bad it can get, quitting just isn't an option.

Emily has this one co-worker, a very young girl, that keeps walking out whenever things become a bit too hot. There may be too many customers in line. A fellow co-worker may be giving her a hard time. In both situations, she has just simply walked out. The funny thing is that an hour may go by and suddenly she reappears after a pep talk with her mom.

Showing perseverance during difficult times builds character. Even though Emily may be upset with her co-worker, I still give her kudos for coming back. It isn't easy to do so after one has made such a scene storming out.

My family may be many things, but I do know that we take work very seriously . . . all of us. We may have upsetting personalities, but we value and respect work.

 So yes, the work week has been pretty intense and stressful. My body has been aching, because I am getting old. I can feel the difficult week physically as well as mentally .  Thank goodness, it is almost finished.

Have a blessed day everyone.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Fighting Negativity

                                                                       Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                                       everyday is a journey.

She doeth little kindnesses
    Which most leave undone or despise;
  For nought which sets one heart at ease,
  And giveth happiness or peace,
    Is low-esteemed in her eyes.

Negativity has been something that I have struggled with from time to time. It hasn't ruled my life, but it likes to creep in occasionally. I have tried to keep a positive outlook, looking at life as a half-filled glass rather than an empty one. I have also found that there are some trigger points that can set me off into a pit of despair. These trigger points can be something as small as a bad day or a careless comment made by someone. Either way, doubts appear almost instantly.

Negativity isn't an isolated feeling, we all experience it without even trying. Not all of us can conquer it, not even I. It takes so much work just to keep afloat on a daily basis. The devil is always at work, looking to trip us up.

I sing and listen to worship songs. I reflect on happy memories from the past. I daydream about all the things that bring me so much pleasure. I keep positive scripture taped to my desk and the refrigerator. I keep repeating encouraging sayings. I do all this in the hopes of not succumbing to the temptation of negativity. Still, there are times I fail. They're always there, lurking in the shadows, looking for a chance to sneak in.

There are so many books that have been written on being positive and overcoming negativity. Sermons have been preached! You know why? We all struggle, that's why! If you fail occasionally, please don't despair. It is extremely normal and something we all have in common. Instead, what is your go to in cases such as these? What brings you Joy? Find it and use it all the time. Just remember, you are not alone in this. 

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Sunday, September 15, 2019

A Winter's Prep

                                             Everyday is a brand new day,
                                             everyday is a journey.

Thy calmness bends serene above
    My restlessness to still;
  Around me flows Thy quickening life,
    To nerve my faltering will;
  Thy presence fills my solitude;
  Thy providence turns all to good.

Well, Labor Day has come and gone. All the children, both small and grown, should be in school by now. The garden should be thinning out, unless you have planted a Fall one. The weather is cooling off with that occasional heat wave here and there. One can hear the birds announcing their departure as they take their V formation. Even the trees are losing their greenness.

Fall is almost here. For some, it might already be here. This is the time where I sit down and make a list. I take stock of what needs to be done and what needs to be replaced. I check the pantry and make sure we have enough of everything. I check the medicine cabinet and restock all the necessary items to keep the Doctor away. I check the cleaning supplies as well as the cat food and litter. The same goes for our clothes, shoes and coats. Do we have everything we need for the Winter? That is the question.

The other list consists of things we need to do to prepare for the cold. Has the car been fully maintenance? Are the windows sealed to keep cold air out? Do we have our flu shots? Have we taken care of any appointments before the end of the year? Things of that nature.

All of these things are vital to me. I definitely don't intend on running around in the cold Winter days. I want to go to work, do some weekly grocery shopping, Church and home. That's it. Nothing adventurous there, just the bare survival of freezing temperatures. Winter time is a time to burrow, reading and crocheting in our warm homes. If I had my way, I would partake in this Winter weather all from the comforts of my home. It's always beautiful when one looks through the window at all the falling snow. Try driving through it and see how much fun it truly can be. I still have the memory of last year's digging my car out vivid in my mind. What about those -20 below days we had? Nice, eh?

No, thank you. I will do my prep now and be thankful later. The only thing I plan on running to the store for is milk and that is even questionable.

Have a blessed day everyone.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Letting A Dream Die

                                                                                Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                                                everyday is a journey.

It is perfectly obvious that men .
do necessarily absorb, out of the influences
 in which they grow up, 
something which gives a complexion
 to their whole after-character.
—Anthony Froude.

We as humans have a natural desire to dream. We learn early on in our life that in order for us to achieve what we want, we have to ask for it. That can come in many forms. We can verbalize what we want. We will get down on our knees every night before bed and pray for it. We can write about our deepest wishes in the form of a letter or secret diary. Whatever way we choose, we learn very quickly that if we stay the course, God will hear our request. 

What are you dreaming for? What have you spent years praying for? How many tears have you wept over that dream? How much preparation have you spent trying to grow mentally, spiritually and physically for when that dream will materialize? How many times have you thought to yourself that perhaps it will happen now or maybe this year? Soon?

Sometimes, we just need to let go of that dream and allow it to die. Sometimes, we need to admit to ourselves that perhaps it is not meant to be for us. Sometimes, we need to realize that the answer is a simple no. Sometimes, we have to accept, acknowledge and release that dream. Just let it go.

If I asked you what you thought was my dream, I can guarantee you will not be able to guess it. It is something very precious to me that I have not penned a single word of it. Oh, maybe only one or two or three have ever heard it, but would they remember it? So many of us treat each other's words as mere ramblings that evaporate into the thin air. Can we recall any of it?

Letting go of something so dear, so personal, so real can be heartbreaking. We have held onto it for so long that we can visualize our life only being attached to it. We don't know anything else. We cannot imagine anything else. We have give n it life in our hearts and our minds.

Oh, don't feel sorry for me. Don't try to leave encouraging verses to just believe or wait a bit longer. It's been a long, long time. It would be cruel to keep hanging on. Let us mourn and let go. When the right time comes, we can perhaps dream a new dream? A little at a time? I mean, we as humans have a nature desire to ask for things we desire. 

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

What Have I Been Up To

                                           Everyday is a brand new day,
                                              everyday is a journey.

Believ'st thou in eternal things?
    Thou knowest, in thy inmost heart,
  Thou art not clay; thy soul hath wings,
    And what thou seest is but part.
  Make this thy med'cine for the smart
    Of every day's distress; be dumb,
  In each new loss thou truly art
    Tasting the power of things that come.
T. W. Parsons.

I know it's been very quiet on my end in regards to my blog. Honestly, my fatigue has gotten the best of me. I sleep when I am tired, I rest whenever I can. I basically have been taking it easy, doing a little bit at a time.

Even my crocheting has been suffering. My right wrist has been hurting on and off for quite awhile. Whenever I would work on the homeless mats, my wrist would blow up swollen. I've decided to rest this hand and perhaps finally get it situated. I've been using a loom instead of the crocheting hook. It is much less strain on it and even then, I've been looming in the mornings and evenings only. I've also have been wearing a wrist brace which has helped tremendously.

In the meantime, my car has been maintenance completely and I am ready for Winter. This has been weighing on me very heavily since I can do without air conditioning, but I cannot do without heat. It also cost me a pretty penny, but I am grateful we had money to pay for it. In fact, this year alone, we have spent quite a bit of money. None of it frivolously, there was a purpose to it all. A lot has been accomplished with it.

The last Summer days are almost behind us and I am glad for it. As much as I have enjoyed wearing dresses, my body aches for the nesting of Winter. Each Season holds a special purpose and that's why I love living in a State that offers all four. I love to see the obvious changing of the landscape as one journey of my life ends and another begins. I welcome each one with open arms.

Have a blessed day everyone.

Monday, September 2, 2019

The Most Productive Weekend By Far

                                                             Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                             everyday is a journey

O Love, how cheering is Thy ray!
    All pain before Thy presence flies;
  Care, anguish, sorrow, melt away,
    Where'er Thy healing beams arise.
  O Father, nothing may I see,
  Nothing desire, or seek, but Thee.

Folks, it has been a very, very busy three day weekend for me. Yet, I don't feel worn out at all. I had so much fun that it hardly seems like a working weekend. Maybe, because I truly enjoy what I do outside of my real job. 

Saturday morning, I set out for the farmer's market quite early so I could pick up all on my list. Once, I went there towards the end and the stalls were pretty skimpy. I bought a bushel of tomatoes, because the Summer garden is pretty much done and I know tomatoes will be gone. Same thing with mushrooms and other veggies. After September, it is mostly hardy vegetables. 

The dehydrator has been going almost nonstop. I have already dehydrated red and green bell peppers, zucchini,yellow and green beans, mushrooms and carrots. I still have some kale and the tomatoes, but I plan on doing those throughout the week. I did all those this weekend alone. I love dehydrating and am very excited by what I have done thus far.

We also spent Saturday afternoon cleaning up the apartment. We vacuumed, mopped, did three loads of laundry, dusted and pretty much cleaned it all. All of that before Supper!

In the evenings, I crocheted and packed up another donation. I wrote some blogs, made some videos and ended up deleting a couple by mistake. The car soon filled up with the boxes, so we made a couple of deliveries the next day. 

It has been a very successful weekend. We were able to get plenty of things done and still enjoyed time together. Now, the evening is here and I plan on binge watching Netflix while crocheting my little heart out. 

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Sunday, September 1, 2019

The End Of August

                                                   Everyday is a brand new day, everyday is a journey.

Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken.
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, 
although his height be taken.
—William Shakespeare.

Here we are at the end of August and September is peeking around the corner. My goodness, did time fly by awfully quick this Summer. Didn't we just start the Season with the kids home for vacation, BBQ's and watermelon? Majority of the children are already back for a new school year.
Fall is not far behind and pretty soon the year will end. Well, time does go by pretty fast.

 I am such an organizer of everything. I love schedules and calendars. I like order, but one wouldn't believe it by looking at my room. The one place that chaos exists and I love every bit of it. I have spent much time reflecting and thinking and all sorts of daydreaming. Now that I am aware of my new status as a survivor, I want to bypass all the organizational planning of my life. I want to have fun. I want to see things that I haven't seen before. I want to live my best life yet.

Do all of the above sound familiar? They should. I have heard several people say these same things just this past week. We all want to live our life fully, looking for adventure under every rock. I have no intention of making any resolutions this upcoming year. Whatever happens, will happen.  I'm taking a break. I only have two goals in mind: Crocheting and writing. Let's see what happens, folks.

My fingers are itching to get to work. Every small disturbance leaves me frustrated. Just like today, I have to go in early to work and all I want to do is crochet. I have so many ideas in my head and no time to execute them. I forgot that this weekend is actually Labor Day. And what does that mean for me? A day off on Monday! Definitely plan on taking advantage of some free time.

Have a blessed day everyone. 

Yarn Bombing My Life

                            Everyday is a brand new day, everyday is a journey. Some murmur if their sky is clear, And wholly bright ...