Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Mantra

I have a very active inner child, who is endlessly curious. It was this quest for knowledge and acute curiosity that led to my love for reading at an early age. The more I learned, the more I realized how little I know, and how no one can ever know it all. Even more important, we don’t need to know it all. I don’t think we are meant to.


Words are powerful conduits for knowledge and understanding. Words can connect us. Sometimes words can define us, or explain us to others, or perhaps just to ourselves. I often write down words and phrases that mean something to me. However, some of these words, quotes, and phrases just make me think. Many of these become "mantra", words I live by.

A mantra that has stayed with me from youth is, “It is what it is.” I take this to heart. If we can remember this it can help us with many situations that are beyond our control. It can be freeing. We cannot always understand why something is a certain way or how to fix a problem. But, if we can simply accept it, we can move forward.



About the time that I realized my own love of words gave me power, I came across my favourite Nietzsche quote, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” This has an especially powerful meaning for me. It proved to be true then, and continues to ring true.



When I was 19, I converted to Catholicism. It was something that I felt deeply about from the age of 12. Finding Mother Teresa was one of the catalysts in converting when I finally did. She inspired me then and still does today. Her words, “Intense love does not measure, it just gives” are potent reminders of what love is and does.



Gandhi is very special to me. I have his words on my blog footer, along with two other loves of mine, Chloe Jo and Maggie. But, another mantra that is always on my heart and whispered in my soul is from Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” When I listen to the news, see rants on Facebook, blogs, and other places, I think of this simple truth. When I am confronted by someone with whom I disagree, these words always rise from deep within me.



I know that I cannot always make a profound impact with my actions or words. Truthfully, I would rather do my work here on earth quietly, as close to God’s satisfaction as I can. I can “be part of the change I wish to see in the world”. God knows what is in my heart. And He understands.





Shared with:
"Create a phrase or statement, that you carry 
with you throughout the coming year."

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Lena's Plate

                                                                                                    source

Every day, without fail, Lena came through the line of the soup kitchen. When asked if she wanted each item, she always shrugged, saying, “Smidgen.” Then, she tucked her plate carefully into a bag and headed out the door.

As she rounded the corner into the back alley, a quivering little dog sat waiting. Approaching, Lena gently put down the plate of food saying, “Here, Smidgen.”


Shared with:
Writing Challenge,
Five lines using prompt words
1."smidgen"~noun, a small amount of something.
2. "quiver"~verb, tremble or shake with a slight rapid motion.

&

Where sharing art in all of its forms is welcomed!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Friendly Fill-ins: Week 38


Welcome to "Friendly Fill-Ins"! You can find the fill-ins here or at 15andmeowing.com each Thursday. The first two fill-ins are provided by my co-host, Ellen. The final two statements are offered by myself. We have posted a link so we can all share the completed fill-ins.

We thank you for joining us each week. Your participation is very important. We enjoy getting to know you better! Sharing with each other is what it is all about. Please remember to visit everyone on the list. It takes me awhile, but please know I will be there as soon as I can.

I am still fighting this flu that seems to have no end. The congestion settled in my lungs and coughing has been pretty extreme. I stay in a fog, and am not sure which is worse: the "bug" or the remedy. I hope you and your loved ones are all staying well.

The weekend is here. Enjoy it! Here are my completed fill-ins for this week:

1. I have seen nothing on Broadway. I have only been to New York on a trucking adventure with Bill. But, I will be honest, I really have no interest in city life. I spent most of my childhood in Chicago, but am not a city girl at heart. I am happier hearing loons call across a moonlit lake, or coyote choruses on a starry night. You can have the stage light, I will take the natural light of the North woods.


2. My Chinese zodiac sign is “The (Earth) Pig”. This is good, as Pigs are said to be most compatible with Goats, which is what Bill is. Of course, there are always things that match and clash in things like astrology. In terms of Western Astrology, I am a May Gemini, which is supposed to be the mirror image of the June Gemini. To my personal experience, there may be some truth in that. Naturally, these things can be fun, but I really do not take any of them seriously.


3. Celebrities need to stay in their lane. These people are paid to entertain us. They do not know what people in "the real world" are going through. If they can find a niche to use their fame for the good of all, that is wonderful. Then, they should make a positive difference. However, I do not need them to speak for me. Especially when they do not reflect my behaviour, morals, or values. In recent days, many celebrity women have called attention to themselves in extremely negative ways. The ways they have dressed, spoken, and conducted themselves is appalling and quite honestly, disgusting. If you want respect, you need to start with respecting yourself. Then, extend that respect to others in an intelligent manner, even to those you may not agree with.


 4. A good day is one spent doing what you love, with those you love. The older I get, the more I realize how important this is. So much time is spent on things that we have to do, need to do, or think we should do. We need to remember to make time to love those who matter, and make sure that they know it. When all is said and done, this is what will be remembered, and this is what matters the most.



~Make sure to spend some fun time with your loved ones!~

Now, it's your turn. Please link up with us here. Or, you can answer in the comments

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Fill-in Statements: Week 38


The Friendly Fill-Ins are four fun and easy statements to complete. Ellen of 15andmeowingprovides the first two statements and the final two are offered by myself. We try to make sure they will be fun to both answer and share. On Friday, the linky will be posted at or about 12:00 AM. Please come back, link up, and share your thoughts! Here are this week's statements with the blanks:

Week 38: January 27, 2017

1. I have seen _______________________ on Broadway.

2. My Chinese zodiac sign is ___________________.

3. Celebrities                            .

4. A                                day is                          .



Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Cold War


Well, it seems I have definitely lost The Cold War. I thought I had defeated it a couple of weeks ago, when I lost a battle with the sniffles and a sore throat. However, I fought back and recovered fairly quickly. 

Mother Nature reminded me who is really in charge, thoughWe have had a record mild Winter. This mild Winter has only allowed the "bugs" to grow stronger, both in force and variety. It seems they are everywhere. And, this time I give up. They won. 

I know many of you have also been fighting colds, flus, and "bugs" of various kinds. I wish you all well. They say that misery loves company. So, at least I am in good company. Feel better soon! And, those who are well, may you stay well!

Monday, January 23, 2017

George's Way

George is a very creative thinker.
He decided to turn the toy upside-down. 
Uh-oh...I think I hurt it.

Yep; it seems wounded.

Are you still in there, spinning balls?

Whew! There you are! 

George has decided he likes the toy better this way.
Sometimes, he takes a ball out to toss down the stairs.
Come on...you can play, too! The more, the merrier! 

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Maze

                                                                                                                  source        

Lights reflect off the street,
hiding what moves in the night.
Silent breath the only heat;
we hold it in so tight. 

Lock the windows, bolt the doors,
keeping safe behind. 
Think good thoughts, dream sweet dreams;
you only control your mind.

Poem: McGuffy Ann Morris


Shared with:

Friday, January 20, 2017

Friendly Fill-ins: Week 37


Welcome to "Friendly Fill-Ins"! You can find the fill-ins here or at 15andmeowing.com each Thursday. The first two fill-ins are provided by my co-host, Ellen. The final two statements are offered by myself. When we come up with fill-ins, we don't even know what we will say! We always post a link so we can all share the completed fill-ins with everyone.

Thank you for joining us each week. Your participation is very important. Sharing with you and getting to know you better through your answers is what this is all about. Please remember to visit everyone on the list. It matters.

My weekends are always very busy, as that is the only time Bill is home. Hauling steel keeps him away from home, 5-6 days a week. Thank you for your continued patience in my visiting and commenting. I promise to get there as soon as I am able to give each proper attention.

Okay, here we go...these are my completed fill-ins for this week:

1. Watching how the youth talks and behaves makes me feel old. Times have really changed, but I am not sure that I have very much. I never spoke to anyone the way youth does now. In fact, I still don’t! Respect is not a given anymore, not even self-respect. Heaven, help us all.


2. Listening to the music of my youth makes me feel young. Hearing a favourite song can really take me back to that time. I can even recall what was happening in my life and the world at that timeMy life really does have a soundtrack, and I know it by heart.


3. I have hope for America. There is much turmoil, but America is resilient. She has been through much in her short life. She can do this, if we all pull together for her collective good, and not “special interests”. United we stand, always.


4. Enough is enough. The protests have reached beyond a destructive level. It is time to come together as one. It seems simple, but it starts with treating others the way we want to be treated. Respect. I keep thinking of the song, Get Together. It was written in 1967, but still rings true today. “Come on people now, smile on your brother. Everybody get together. Try to love one another right now.



~America, now is the time to show your true colours!~


Now, it's your turn. Please link up with us here. Or, you can answer in the comments

Thursday, January 19, 2017

New Hope


As we begin a new year, America begins a new era. This should be viewed as a good thing. While everyone in the universe has an opinion about it, it is Americans that it affects the most. It is our America; it is us. What many Americans do not seem to remember, or perhaps understand, is that we are still in this together.

I spent most of my life in America’s heartland, born of generations of American farmers. Many of their descendants later became factory workers. They moved from the farms to the cities to “better” themselves and their families lives, and building America in the process. Indeed, making her great.

I was raised to be a good citizen. I was taught to respect those in authority, that they are protecting my country, its laws, and me. I was taught how to be a part of that, and spent four years in ROTC. There I learned about the history and preservation of America from the inside out. I saw how critical it is to be part of solutions, and how to prevent problems.

I became old enough to vote in 1980, and was proud to do so. I saw America gain momentum and grow even stronger. She flourished. I saw our military proud to serve under their Chief. America took pride in her own natural resources and the independence of using them. America was truly great.

But, recent times have changed things. I have seen America falter, stumble, and grow weak. She is not what she once was. I have seen her give herself away, with false hope of becoming stronger. She was lied to. Her people were misled. The factories and mines that made her strong and independent closed. These businesses were what once gave her people jobs, homes, and lives. Now these jobs were in foreign countries, yet Americans were forced to buy the things they used to make here. Morals and values followed downward in the undoing of America. She was stripped of it all. I know, because I was there. I saw it happen.

I have seen manufacturing leave our country, including Bill’s career of over thirty years. He was forced to reinvent himself, which is not easy for a man over 55. He is not alone. This has destroyed Americans in numerous ways. Illinois, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan all have firsthand stories, from generations of real Americans. They will tell you how America has changed, failing them, because the concern was not for America, but for a “new world order” that does not seem to include them. We must think of America and her people first; because only then can we be strong in the world. The Bible tells us that “Charity begins at home”. This is the same Bible that is part of the foundation of America.

Many people are more concerned with being “politically correct” than morally correct. There are bullies that take it out on those who cling to the morals and values that America was founded on. Protests have become the norm as retaliation for unrest. But, “protests” should not be a way of life. “Protests” have made us a nation divided. This is a bad thing. If we continue to divide, we will all ultimately fall.  

As an American, born and raised here, this does not feel like a reasonable option. I want us all to succeed, grow, thrive! I want us all to remain true to our roots, the very things that brought us together and founded us as a great nation. These things made us all great. I want to see America resourceful, working, and independent, again.

I still have hope for America. America is resilient. She has been through much in her short life. She can do this, if we all pull together for her collective good, and not “special interests”. United we stand. If we cease to stand together, we will cease to exist as a free country.

Enough is enough. It is time to come together as one. It seems simple, but it starts with treating others the way we want to be treated. It is all about "Respect". God bless America and her people.

"Long may She wave."



Shared with:
It's a New Year! What is one positive thing about 2017, 
and one negative thing about the forthcoming year?   

Fill-in Statements: Week 37


The Friendly Fill-Ins are four fun and easy statements to complete. Ellen of 15andmeowingprovides the first two statements and the final two are offered by myself. We try to make sure they will be fun to both answer and share. On Friday, the linky will be posted at or about 12:00 AM. Please come back, link up, and share your thoughts! Here are this week's statements with the blanks:

Week 37: January 20, 2017

1. ________________ makes me feel old.

2.________________ makes me feel young.

3. I have                             .

4.                                 is                                .



Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The New Toy

 Maggie was first to try the Tower of Tracks, 
with Chloe Jo watching closely.

 Then, George moved in to watch Chloe Jo play.

George was very much in awe of this wonderful thing,

so Chloe Jo let her baby brother take over.

George was more than happy to have a go at it.

 George says it is the best toy since Tent Ball 
(which he does still play)!


Santa brought this "Tower of Tracks" to our cats, but you can get yours from Chewy.com !  George, Chloe Jo, and Maggie highly recommend it. 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Relieved

                                                                    source

Together, they had been through much unspeakable action. But, Sarge was now old and tired.

The young officer knew this partnership had reached an end. “Sarge, with all due respect, you are relieved of active duty.”

Removing the old dog’s leash for the last time, he said, “You’re home.”



Story: McGuffy Ann Morris


Shared with:
Writing Challenge:
Five lines or less,
using the word prompt
"relieved"


&

Sharing the beauty of 
all forms of art!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Friendly Fill-ins: Week 36


Welcome to "Friendly Fill-Ins"! You can find the fill-ins here or at 15andmeowing.com each Thursday. The first two fill-ins are provided by my co-host, Ellen. The final two statements are offered by myself. We have posted a link so we can all share the completed fill-ins.

Thank you for joining us each week. Your participation is very important. Sharing with you and getting to know you better through your answers is what it is all about. Please remember to visit everyone on the list. 

Let me also thank all of you for your patience with me, as it takes me longer to visit everyone. Most of you know that Bill is a trucker. He usually gets home on Friday and leaves on Sunday, but the times of arrival and departure vary greatly. Needless to say, weekends are very chaotic for us. There is no "normal" in trucking, so we go with the flow. Bill works hard and we all appreciate him. No one is like Dad!

Okay...here are my completed fill-ins for this week:

1. My guiding word for 2017 is Believe. Nothing can be accomplished unless you believe. If you believe,
anything is possible.



2. I do not have any interest in a class reunion. My high school experience was wonderful. I was very involved in ROTC, where I was extremely successful. Those memories are priceless to me. But, I do not think one can go back and find what was left then and there. However, I believe events and things do stay with us, becoming a part of us. Life keeps moving, as it is supposed to, changing us as we go. As I age, I am more determined to live a happy life today and tomorrow. I want to keep experiencing happy moments and making more memories. "The Way", by Fastball has special meaning for Bill and I, for that very reason

3. Truth be told, I am superstitious about Friday the 13th. I have had several very bad experiences on Friday the 13th. As for black cats? They are blessings, of course!



4. Lately, I have been reading even more than usual. By nature, Winter creates more quiet time for critter cuddling and reading. I am happy to do both. I will be reviewing more books here, again, starting very soon.




~May your Winter be warm & cozy~

Now, it's your turn. Please link up with us here. Or, you can answer in the comments