Friday, August 22, 2014

Two Shoes Tuesday Prompts for the Coming Week

~TWO SHOES TUESDAY~
Stories, poems and essays - original fiction and non-fiction 
 Your choice of themes for Tuesday, August 26th are: 
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Put your thinking cap on and come and join us! 

Friday Four Fill-In Fun - August 22nd

Feeling Beachie
I'm joining Hilary at Feeling Beachie for Follow Friday Four Fill-In Fun.  Hilary provides four statements with blanks for us to fill in and share on her blog-hop. Come join the fun!

The Statements:
  1. ___ is my least ____
  2. When I was ___ I thought _____
  3. My worst subject in high school was ___
  4. I write best ____.
My Answers:
  1. Housecleaning is my least favorite thing to do, but I love the feeling of having it all done. It is hard to keep up with here in West Texas where the dirt blows constantly and dust is a non-ending battle, along with floating cat fur! :-)
  2. When I was in my third marriage I thought all men were horrible, because in my experience they were.  Papa Bear was the first to show me that God did indeed make a few who are truly awesome.  :-)
  3. My worst subject in high school was chemistry.  I enjoyed the lab work, but found chemical equations to be no fun. Our teacher wasn't able to present it at a level we could understand.
  4. I write best when it is quiet, and when I start with an idea and just let my thoughts flow. If I work too hard at something, it comes out lifeless.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Temptation

I'm linking up my story with Brenda at BYG Adventures, where the word we are Pondering this week is "glass"... 

A few years ago I was working in the office of a truck dealership.  Four of us women shared one crowded office, and the interplay of personalities was always "interesting".  Ok, more often than not it was a royal pain! 

At one point the dealership hired a new office manager that far outshined anyone who came before or after her.  She was intelligent, caring, fair, capable, and fun to work with.  She brought with her a huge clear bowl of glass marbles that she placed on the end of her desk, explaining that she had collected them over the years and enjoyed looking at them.  So did we, they were beautiful!  All kinds and colors of cat's eyes, large and small.  Some were smooth and pristine, others were nicked and scarred and looked like they'd spent a good deal of  time competing in the ring.  

Our office manager would smile as salesmen, parts men, and service techs alike came into the office, and would soon be checking out the bowl of marbles, drawn to it like moths to a flame.  I think the bowl of marbles evoked fond memories of childhood,  many of us older staff once had our own bag of marbles and competed on the school playground during recess.  The bowl of glass marbles attracted even more attention than the candy dish sitting on the counter.  A handful of larger more unique cat's eyes were scattered atop the rest and drew the most  notice, people often picked them up for a closer look. Everyone truly enjoyed the display, it was something different and fun!

It was a particularly sad morning then, when we arrived at work and the office manager discovered that one of the most beautiful marbles was missing - a very large cat's eye with a beautiful blue-violet twist inside that almost resembled a wisp of flame.  She was heartbroken.  The bowl of marbles had sat on the desk for weeks, enjoyed by all, and no one had felt the need to steal one... until now.  I suppose it was to be expected, the temptation was just too much.  But in wanting to possess that marble for him/herself, that person robbed the rest of us of the pleasure of enjoying the marbles.  Before long she took the bowl of marbles home, fearing that more would disappear.

It wasn't too many more weeks before she herself left, becoming frustrated with the lack of responsive management.  I missed her greatly, she was one of the best supervisors I've ever had, and the one I most respected.  We missed her beautiful bowl of marbles too.  Now when I see marbles I smile, remembering that bowl and the pleasure we derived from it.  What a shame that one person chose to ruin it for the rest. 

Sadly, life is too often like that - people believing that they need to have someone or something all to themselves, rather than choosing to share what they have found as a blessing for us all.
~*~*~*~*~*~*~
Now head on over to BYG Adventures and share your thoughts on "glass"!
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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

My Favorite Furry Faces... Photo Updates!

GRACIE
TIGGY
SOPHIE
TOBY
For reasons unknown, our furkids were in a mood to be a bit photogenic as they lounged on the kitchen island tonight, so I grabbed the opportunity and my iPhone to capture some updates for my sidebar.  Note how big Toby is growing!  He is ten months old and really thinks he runs the place... all boy! :-)   Sophie is the matriarch of the bunch and hanging in there despite having lost so much weight.  Tiggy and Gracie are amazingly littermates... Tiggy is larger than her Dad was, Gracie is small, and we're not sure where she got that colorful coat! :-)

It's A Date

(Author Unknown)

I have a date... a date with destiny.  So do you; in fact we all do. We inhabit our bodies only temporarily and eventually return to the realm of spirit from whence we came.  I believe this. I also believe that what we do with our time here matters.  We have a choice in that... we can choose to be "good" or "bad", to be caring or uncaring, to be self-focused or to live a life focused on our interaction with others.  We can choose to let life happen to us, or we can choose to have a role in determining what happens.  We can have a miserable life experience, or we can do all that is within our power to make it good.  Can we shape our destiny?  Yes, I believe we can!  I also believe that in some way we will be held accountable for the choices we've made. 
 
Several years ago blog "memes" were a common thing.  Everyone would take the same idea or question and post their personal spin on it.  The one I remember most well was a simple question... "When you die, what would you like your tombstone to say?"  In other words, how would you like to be remembered.  There were all kinds of interesting answers to that one, both serious and funny.  The one that struck me was the person who said simply that she wanted her tombstone to say that she was kind. 
 
Kind. Humph!  I realized that no one was likely to suggest that for my tombstone at the time.  While deep inside I was a kind, caring  person and have always been, on the outside I was angry, frustrated, short-tempered, quick to criticize and condemn.  I was bitter about life and where my choices had taken me.  It seemed that all my efforts and many prayers had gone to naught, and I was angry about that too.  I was so angry with God that I decided to entirely deny His existence.  That makes me smile now.  I'm pretty sure it made God smile too. I'm sure He  knew that I'd come around to my senses eventually.  
 
But you know that question about an epitaph weighed on me.  What would people likely say about me when I was gone, and what was it that I wished they would say?  Those two answers were pretty far apart, and that disturbed me.  I really liked that idea of being thought of as kind.  Who doesn't like someone who is kind?  In reality, I'd place the value of a kind person far above someone who is intelligent, or wealthy, or successful.  Kindness is such a great balm for weary souls.  A little act of kindness can make so much difference!
 
So I decided back then that I was going to let more of that shine from me.  I was going to work at discarding those outer shells of hardness and being unapproachable.  I was going to let go of the anger and the disappointment and the bitterness.  I was going to commit myself to being kind, and I think I'm doing better with that these days, though I know I will never be a model of perfection.  I am content in knowing that I do not want any part of what is mean, insensitive, or cruel.  I don't want it in my life, and I do not want to associate with people who do.  I make it a point to reach out to others with kindness and encouragement, and in doing so I make myself happy too. 
 
I am sixty years old now, I would like to think that by the time I am seventy or eighty I'll be ready for that date with destiny, ready to return home to the spirit world, and ready to hear the words people say about me after I'm gone.  It is my hope that they will be kind.
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ 
This was written for Two Shoes Tuesday
where the theme choices this are drift and date.
If you enjoy writing, come and join us!