Friendly Fill-Ins: Week 21

Annie at McGuffy's Reader and Ellen at 15andmeowing are co-hosting a weekly meme called Friendly Fill-In'sAll you have to do to participate is complete the statements and link your post up hereThis is a fun way to get to know each other a little better!

Here are the this week's statements:

1. _______________ a  __________________.

2. My favorite magazine is  __________________.

3.  Recently ___________________ .

4.  Even though  ______________, I  _________________.

Here are my answers:

1. One thing I would really like to have more often is a day with nothing to worry about! God is still trying to teach me about trust, I am a slow learner. :-)

2. My favorite magazine is Guideposts.  I've been reading it for over forty years!  It has wonderful true stories of God working in people's lives. There is a Kindle version too!

3.  Recently the mornings have been nice and cool. I love Fall so much! 

4.  Even though I like to get up and get moving in the morning, I have the bad tendency to stay awake too late at nightI need to change that!


Beyond Appearances

Thought for the Day

The Thaw

The old freezer chest in the shed had always been locked, and when asked about it Grandpa said he kept deer meat in it.  Then Grandpa died, and the task of cleaning out his house to prepare it for sale fell to his two out-of-state grandchildren, Susan and Jayden, since they were his only remaining family.  The utilities had been shut off for about a month when they finally arrived to sort through things and no one had thought about the old freezer in the shed... until they encountered a smell in the back yard so rank that it made them nauseous.  Covering their mouths and noses with bandanas and armed with flashlights, they entered the shed and approached the old freezer dreading the mess they would find. One by one they tried out the small keys on their Grandpa's key ring until finally one popped it open.  Susan's eyes filled with horror as she shrieked, "Oh my God, Jayden, call the police!"

I'm joining the incredibly awesome Ivy Walker at "Uncharted"
for Six Sentence Stories
where the cue this week is "rank"

Just Move On

Thought for the Day


On This Day Eight Years Ago

On this day EIGHT years ago I did something I wasn't the least bit nervous about... I married my beloved Papa Bear, one of the best men God ever made!
One would think that with my history of three miserable former marriages, that I would be wary of trying it again.  But I had it figured out this time, I made a list of the things those men had in common, then I chose someone who was the complete opposite!   
We were married in a private ceremony at a beautiful Bed and Breakfast in East Texas.  The only ones in attendance were the two of us, the minister, and the two innkeepers as witnesses.  We wanted it that way, intimate rather than a big fancy affair.
Marrying Papa Bear was the best thing I've ever done in my life!  My life has changed so incredibly much in the past EIGHT years, and I know that no matter what the years to come bring, we will weather the storms together and continue to celebrate the good times with joy and laughter. 
My story is a testimony to the fact that God doesn't always answer our prayers immediately, and we not only need to be praying but also listening to what He is trying to tell us.  Once I understood the lesson, Papa Bear was there and waiting for me, just as God intended all along.  In my case He most certainly saved the very best for last!  I hope we are granted many more wonderful years to share!
This is an updated repost from two years ago.  Sharing the wonderful story of our love reminds me of the joy of that day all over again.  Papa Bear was right when he said that true loves grows a little each day, I love him more than words can say! 

Friendly Fill-Ins: Week 20

Annie at McGuffy's Reader and Ellen at 15andmeowing are co-hosting a weekly meme called Friendly Fill-In'sAll you have to do to participate is complete the statements and link your post up hereThis is a fun way to get to know each other a little better!

Here are the this week's statements:

1. The last movie I saw at the theater was __________________.

2. The title of my autobiography would be __________________.

3.  I would love to learn, ___________________ .

4.  I am glad that I learned,  ________________, because _________________.

Here are my answers:

1. The last movie I saw at the theater was several months ago because we usually watch Netflix.  My memory is so rusty that I can barely remember what shows I watched yesterday, much less what I watched that long ago! :-)

2. The title of my autobiography would be Six Pieces of Cherry Pie because there will most likely be six chapters of my life before I depart this world, all very different from each other.

3.  I would love to learn to write well enough to earn an income doing it, wouldn't we all? :-)

4.  I am glad that I learned that people and experiences are far more important than things,  because I think it's rather sad to watch people whose main goal in life is to acquire possessions. They never seem to have enough to be satisfied.


No Returns

"Take it back," Simone shouted. "Don't buy me any more expensive gifts because you have a guilty conscience!" 

Stunned by the intensity of her anger, Barry did his best to calm Simone's rage.  "Honey you're talking crazy, I haven't done anything to be guilty for," he protested, averting his eyes.

"Yeah okay, give me the keys and I'll take it on a test drive to the convenience store to pick up a couple things," Simone said, apparently calming down.

Thirty minutes later the neighborhood was rocked by an explosion and Barry ran to the front door in time to see the brand new vehicle engulfed in flames while Simone walked away smiling.

I'm joining Ivy Walker at "Uncharted"
for Six Sentence Stories
where the cue this week is "back"

A New Season Begins

Thought for the Day

On My Way

I had known for some time that the future of our office was in jeopardy.  When I began working there over four years ago it was my intention to remain in the position until I reached retirement age, and then reduce my hours to part-time.  I have never lost a job in my life, I didn't expect to lose this one.

When your fears become reality you are confronted with a full range of emotions. Along with frustration and fear, I have had to deal with a lot of anger because I liked my job, at least the interactions with people desperately needing our assistance.  Other things about it suited me well too, and I really didn't want to face the prospect of searching for a good fit and learning yet another new job at this age.

I haven't held all that many jobs in my adult life, one I had for nineteen years, and left it only when I moved to Texas to marry Papa Bear.  But I had been ready for that change and relocation, my life needed it, and God provided.  Then came the job at the truck sales/service business.  It was a good job too, and despite a lot of ongoing drama I liked it well enough... until it sold out to a larger corporation that I didn't want to be a part of.  So I flung caution to the wind, took a giant leap of faith, and submitted my resignation. Within a few weeks time I'd secured my new job at the law firm, and again it felt like where I was supposed to be.  And then it ended.  The office closed for many reasons, but management issues certainly played a role in it, and that's what made me angry because perhaps it didn't have to end that way. 

But none the less it ended, and as I walked out of the office for the final time after holding keys for two weeks to let movers in, etc. I felt such a wave of relief.  Freedom at last, no need to return to that office building again ever. And then comes the fear.  What would I do now, and how would we survive?

I still don't know the answers to those questions, but I do know that God is clearing a path for me to follow if I trust Him.  The hardest thing to learn in life if you are a questioning person like me, is that we don't need to know all the answers.  All we have to do is see the first step, and take it.  I've been taking it day-by-day now for over six weeks, and so far everything is working out ok.  I have a few things to iron out, like finding some part time income to supplement my Social Security benefits, and enough to cover health insurance.  I'm hoping that I can find something casual or that I can do at home. I am praying that my office days are over.  But I am also open to what may come. 

In life we have to learn to bend with the wind like the trees do.  Even more importantly, I need to feel secure in  the belief that God has a plan for me.  Then all I have to do is remember to breathe.  Just as the quote below says, I have no idea where I am going, but I am on my way.  I am willing to be led...  and that is good enough.
I'm joining Patricia for In Other Words
where this week's writing prompt
is the following quotation by Carl Sandburg:

"I don't know where I am going, but I am on my way."


Invisible Nets

Thought for the Day

Thankful Thoughts - Sept. 17, 2016

As my life settles into the new routine I want to get back to this... the recounting of life's blessings this week.  Ten barely scratches the surface...
1) I am thankful beyond words for the closing of my previous workplace which has resulted in me being at home full-time for now, and hopefully at least part-time in the future.  So often the things which seem like catastrophes turn out to be blessings in disguise.  I keep hoping that I won't wake up and find it was just a dream.  I've been working full time for the past forty years, and I am so, so ready to be done with it.
2) Tied in with #1 is the blessing of quiet mornings, waking up to a new day without rushing around to get ready and out the door. I can sip tea, read the latest blog and Facebook updates, and cuddle the furkids who are equally happy to have me home.
3) Also tied in with #1 is the pure joy of not responding to ringing phones eight hours a day. I love the quiet!  I love talking to people by choice, not on demand, and not dealing with coworker drama! (That's about four thankfuls right there! :-)
4) I am thankful for the slow but sure progress I am making in getting the house in order at last!  There is so much clutter to sort through and dispose of and we are already feeling the lightness of less stuff, not to mention few dustbunnies!
5) I am thankful that my older sister was able to sell her two-story home and be approved for the purchase of a smaller one-story home in a senior residential community.  She fell on icy steps and severely broke her leg last January, and will be using a walker for stability from now on, so the one-level home with less upkeep will be a true blessing.
6) I am thankful for the clever magnetic child-proof cabinet locks that are working very well to keep curious cats out of the kitchen cabinets and drawers at night!   Thanks to Papa Bear for installing them all too!  (Why on earth would Tiggy decide that a drawer full of cooking utensils makes a great place to nap when there are dozens of cozy places all over the house?!  I suspect that many volumes could be written on feline psychology :-)
7) I am thankful for the tremendous amount of rain we've had here in the last month or so. Late summer is usually a very dry time in West Texas and the risk of grassfires is huge on the rangeland around us. This year that is not a concern, although the thriving population of weeks threatens to overtake the property and makes allergies especially fun!
8) I am thankful for reconnecting with old friends and making new friends that expand my world, and I am especially thankful for the friendships that reassure me that caring for each other doesn't need to be complicated!
9) I am thankful for the time and energy to prepare good home-cooked meals for Papa Bear. With both of us working and getting home late, supper too often happened in town or was a quick and easy affair. I am enjoying getting back into meal planning!
10) First and last, and always, I am thankful for my Papa Bear and his total acceptance and support of me.  It is wonderful to know that I am valued loved unconditionally. We have an anniversary coming up next week! :-)
Today I'm linking up with Ten Things of Thankful
Go and check out what others are thankful for this week!

It's Called Love

Thought for the Day

Friendly Fill-Ins: Week 19

Annie at McGuffy's Reader and Ellen at 15andmeowing are co-hosting a weekly meme called Friendly Fill-In'sAll you have to do to participate is complete the statements and link your post up hereThis is a fun way to get to know each other a little better!

Here are the this week's statements:

1. Something healthy I do daily is __________________.

2. Something unhealthy I do daily is __________________.

3.  This Summer, ___________________ .

4.  This Autumn,  ___________________.

Here are my answers:

1. Something healthy I do daily is writing, it's my therapy. :-)

2. Something unhealthy I do daily is spending too much time sitting, and not enough time moving.

3.  This Summer we spent a week in the mountains in Colorado. It was heavenly!

4.  This Autumn my life is undergoing tremendous change, since I am no longer employed.


Just Wait

Thought for the Day

The Barking Spider App

~Image Source~

I was raised in a rather proper family where cuss words or the discussion of body functions were not welcome at the dinner table or elsewhere.  My father was not amused if someone said "fart" despite the fact that my older sister had the art of flatulence down to a science, so we turned it around and said "traf" instead, and call it that with each other to this day.
Recently my younger sister made me aware of an iPhone app that elicits bursts of laughter from her young granddaughter, which is called "iFart" and provides dozens of audio variations on the barking spider theme for your amusement, and even a timer so you can set your phone down and walk away to leave unsuspecting people in your company wondering who did it.
Repressed behavior often leads people to the other extreme, and my younger sister and I break into laughter to this day if someone (ourselves included) accidentally sets a barking spider free in public.  Papa Bear has declared me a champion in the art of farting, and I accept that award with great pride!  Well, actually he just rolls his eyes - he's come to expect it of me... I never promised him that I was a lady!  :-)

P.S. -  The Barking Spider Tavern graphic is not directly related to this post, I just thought it was pretty cool!  If you follow the link you'll learn that there actually is a Barking Spider Tavern in Cleveland, Ohio.
I'm joining Ivy Walker at "Uncharted"
for Six Sentence Stories
where the cue this week is "bark"

Stolen Joy

Thought for the Day

Garbage In... Garbage Out

Admittedly, I am 62 years old, and come from a time with different values and ways of doing things, and I hate to be one of those grumpy old ladies that is complains about the way things are now, but I have to say that I honestly believe we've reached a new level of tastiness on TV and social media. I totally get it that times change, and a lot of those changes I have learned to accept and maybe even smile at.  Some changes were needed and have been a long time coming.  But good grief, is there no limit to the content of commercials, or the negativity of the news? 

Papa Bear and I notice all the time that commercials are targeted to idiots, or to portraying people as idiots, and I don't even want to know what some famous brands have paid advertising agencies for these "brilliant" campaigns that rarely make you want to go out and buy it.  And then you have to watch the same mindless commercial over and over for weeks and months until you are so sick of it that you wish you had a blocking device! 

Last night we saw a commercial that involved a cartoon character sitting on the toilet with his pants down.  Really?  Do we need that visual, or to be told to have a "happy period" (since when were they happy, unless you were afraid you were pregnant), or to be assured that if the guy takes this magic pill to resolve his impotence issues, he will also attract really hot women with his charms?  Those are just a few of the examples that make me want to vomit. 

Then we have clothing choices that make me think we've landed on the poon channel. I am all for women dressing in an attractive manner, but I am sick of seeing breasts falling out of shirts and butt cheeks hanging out of shorts or underwear. It's lovely in the bedroom (or in the living room if the kids aren't home), but would it be so wrong to promote the concept that beauty and decency can go hand in hand.  Modesty doesn't have to mean prudish and Victorian collars, but good grief.  I am tired of values that do not mirror my own being shoved in my face on a nightly basis so that I can be convinced it's perfectly normal and ok. 

Then we have the nightly newscasts that will leave you spending that last half  hour before you go to bed watching every possible bad thing that has occurred today, be it political clowns attacking each other, another famous public figure who is anything but a role model, or the latest local case of a shooting or child molestation. I have noted to Papa Bear that on any given night you are lucky to see one positive thing that happened that day, no feel-good stories, no hope for tomorrow or for our world.

Gloom, doom, obscenity and violence, that's what intrigues people, that's what sells.  And yes, I know there are a few networks that don't follow this format, and I always have the option of turning the TV off. When I lived in Germany for 2 1/2 years long ago, we didn't have TV, and we didn't miss it. We found other things to do.  When we went on vacation to the mountains this past June, our cabin didn't have TV, we found other things to do, and we felt so much more free and peaceful! 

It would be my preference to cancel our satellite TV subscription. We have our tablets and our smart phones to keep up with any critical news or weather events, but at least we wouldn't have it blasting in our ears, polluting our minds, and warping our perspectives on what is real and what is good... and what is not.  When I am home alone during the day the TV never goes on, I love the sound of silence.  However, Papa Bear likes to unwind with TV at night after a hard day of working on his feet, and to relax on the weekends watching his favorite football teams.  I think he is less disturbed by what bothers me, maybe he is able to filter out the garbage better, because he has a higher degree of personal integrity.  He agrees with me about the garbage, he doesn't let it fuel his fire as it does mine. Maybe I admire that, I'm not sure. 

I am a firm believer that garbage in means garbage out. If you fill your time and your thoughts with garbage, it's going to be reflected in your life.  The Good Book talks about guarding our hearts from evil.  If we make no effort to do that it is so easy for the line to become blurred.  I can't tell you how much I'd like to see the newscast end each night with the GOOD NIGHT NEWS, with the emphasis on good.  Let us go to bed with our minds thinking about what went right and who did something to make the world a better place. Inspire us, encourage us, uplift us... take the garbage off the air!
I'm joining Patricia for In Other Words
where this week's writing prompt
is the following quotation by Earl Nightingale:

"We become what we think about."

Choose Happy

Thought for the Day

Friendly Fill-Ins: Week 18

Annie at McGuffy's Reader and Ellen at 15andmeowing are co-hosting a weekly meme called Friendly Fill-In'sAll you have to do to participate is complete the statements and link your post up hereThis is a fun way to get to know each other a little better!

Here are the this week's statements:

1. I can't wait for the new season of ______________ on television.

2. In my home  __________________ needs to be repaired.

3.  I thought I lost _________________ but, ______________ .

4.  Once, I found  ___________________.

Here are my answers:

1. I can't wait for the new season of paranormal shows on television.

2. In my home the living room wall where we removed an exterior door needs to be repaired.

3.  I thought I lost a box of precious little keepsakes from the previous chapters of my life but, I found it when we were cleaning the storage room.  That made me very happy!

4.  Once, I found my Prince Charming I knew I would live happily ever after, but I did have to kiss a few frogs first. :-)



Thought for the Day

Our Home On The Range

Oh, give me a home where the rattlesnakes roam,

Where the coyotes and roadrunners play,
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word,
(just the creaking of the pump jack in the backyard)
And the skies are not cloudy all day... except during dust storms.

But our home on the range has its amazing moments too!

I'm joining Ivy Walker at "Uncharted"
where the cue this week is "range"