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Festival

My children studied the events that led up to the various wars of the last century specifically Nazi Germany. Today, they keep up with the news and not just face time on TV which I think is a grand accomplishment in itself. Often they will ask, “What was it like… (fill in the blank)…back when (such and such) happened. I’ll give them my perspective even telling them how it impacted my life and shaped my beliefs. Not until recently have they experienced much of this for themselves.

 

They are shocked to hear how the leader of the American government treats the citizens and friends and allies. I frequently hear these words, “But Mom, this is what happened while Hitler was in power. Why don’t people see this?” I just smile and whence deep inside elated that they see it but deeply troubled that it is happening during their lifetime in the year 2017. I keep telling myself it’s 2017 but my brain doesn’t seem to believe it. We have had countless conversations of what it means to be politically correct and why treating others with respect is not a bad thing and we talk about the daily happenings and how it will impact future generations.

 

As much as I would love for this next topic to go away, it’s not. White supremacy is not a thing in my eyes. I don’t recognize it no matter how many people pledge allegiance to such a grotesque way of thinking. You may think white power type of thing has to be labeled in order to see it as such but it doesn’t. These things start subtly and become more of the norm just like you watch today certain people such as the alt-right/Nazi guy who visited Auburn University recently (I’m not writing his name anymore). He can call it what he wants but it is still about white superiority (in his mind). Watch any or all of his videos. In other countries, he would be in jail but we have what we call freedom of speech—however, that does NOT mean that we have to give him a platform on which to speak such as story after story in the media. Yes, people need to know what he says but he’s in the news as a regular guy (eye roll).

 

To many, he is a novelty, something different so he is of interest. To me, he speaks nothing but hate inciting hate in other people. Imagine doing such against other races of human beings just because they have a different pigment or different religion, etc. I’m rolling my eyes even more because it’s 2017. I grew up amid the civil rights fight and the push back against the government integrating the schools. I live and lived in the south at the time. It was awful. I digress.

 

May 1 was designated loyalty day long ago. It’s nothing new. I don’t agree with it. I’m fine with patriotism. I’m even great with it but we have a tinderbox full of hot coals ready to blow up into the biggest wildfire that has ever swept this country. This type of call to allegiance reminds me of the time leading up to Nazi Germany. Plenty have dismissed this but there are so many similarities. I have lived my entire life saying it couldn’t happen here but just like my kids are witnessing the happenings of today, I have to change my way of thinking. It IS happening here. Further evidence can be seen at our fearful leader’s campaign rallies even three months after inauguration. Same thing happened in Germany. It’s like they are following along the Nazi playbook.

 

What happens to people if they don’t pledge their allegiance or they don’t do it in a manner others think you should? Look at those who protested the national anthem or rather look at the ones who criticized those who protested. Do I get jailed or deported because I don’t subscribe to the same level of allegiance on loyalty day? Look at those who criticize the saying of “Happy Holidays” rather than “Merry Christmas.” This is not saying let’s encourage better morale but saying dam* to anyone who isn’t like them.

 

It took a while for Germany to change over to Nazi control. It didn’t happen overnight but they had a reason for enacting each rule they came up with in order to go against another group of people. Similar to what is happening here. This is fascism pure and simple. We are not at the eve of a fascist government – we are in a full-fledged fascist regime.

 

Silencing the media is one of the crucial parts of this. When free press is wiped out, freedom of speech is next to go. And, one of the most difficult things to watch lately is the abuse of power over the justice system. Our democratic republic (giving that name is wishful thinking—I know) was established so that there are balances of power – to keep any single branch from having autocratic power. That is being abolished by strong-armed tactics (bully ways). More eye-rolling on my part.

 

I could go on and on but loyalty day to me symbolizes the cementing of this fascist type of government. Clearly seen by many and by his own words this past week, the man was not prepared for this position as president. Most of us know the job is difficult. He spent eight years criticizing President Obama because he thought the job was so easy. He’s a madman who wants to laud himself with great honors probably because of some family issue when he was growing up. He will always surround himself with things that tell him he is great because he cannot accept mistakes he makes – failure. He will always blame someone else. This is not different from other politicians but this is not characteristics of a president.

Martyn Pattison – Wikimedia Commons

As for me, I am choosing to celebrate the Gaelic customs of Bealtaine (Beltane) – the ancient fire festival ushering in the summer season. I tend to honor Mother Earth – she is what is important to me. If we don’t take care of her, there is no reason for anything else.

 

Happy Gardening and Happy Bealtaine! 🙂

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A New Year

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With a new year brings hope and desire to want better. Some want a better world in which to live where people are treated with kindness and respect while others may seek more self-desires.  Closing the book on a year past may be easy for some but difficult for others. It is what it is. The future is coming whether we like it or not and there are only so many things that are in our control but if we don’t dream of better then who is responsible for not making those hopes a reality? In other words, without dreams of hope and then putting those thoughts into our daily actions, why do we dream and hope at all?

 

Reality is overrated but it is the cement of life. I stopped making resolutions some time ago. I’ve written about it here a few years back. I used to make concrete resolutions—things that I could achieve say in 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and so on. If I achieved the goal, I felt that was the end. If I didn’t achieve a goal, I felt failure but would move the goal posts. Both became negative feedback that I didn’t need so I made more general goals. And lastly, I would resolve to make every day better than the one before rather than make resolutions once a year. It works for me.

 

We are constantly changing—each of us. To put a finish line out there is great when we need positive reinforcement (goal achievements). Nothing wrong with it but for me, and maybe it’s because I’m getting older, I look to each day. So here is to a better year. May your dreams and hopes be achieved and may you never stop working for them while realizing we are all together on this big sphere we call Earth.

 

Happy New Year! (And goodbye 2016!!!) 😀

 

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Injustices in the world…I believe we are here to help others. If you knew of a needy family, would you offer aid? If a child was going hungry, would you offer him/her food? We are all humans in this world. Sometimes we are in need.

 

I remember when my youngest was born—two weeks before Christmas. My husband had just lost his job. He had been overseas for Desert Storm and was called back home because I was having such a difficult time with my pregnancy. His employer kept him the 30 days required and got rid of him so we were without insurance, food, everything but we still had a roof over our heads.

 

I remember how humiliating it was to be in need and I couldn’t do anything about it. My eldest child had just begun walking. My mom had a stroke earlier that year–it was an awful year in many ways. I was at my wit’s end and had to participate in the WIC program for my baby. Not to be critical but even my church didn’t offer any aid. I was ashamed of my situation but this isn’t the way it is supposed to be. Government programs exist because there are those in need. There is nothing wrong with participating in these and we should never shame anyone who does.

 

I doubt anyone would fault me for participating in the WIC program especially with a newborn. In fact, it was required that I do so by the hospital in order to be released. But what if it were a family who needed help? Would you grant them this same sentiment? What about refugees who come into this country? Would you turn them away? Would you refuse help after they have been settled? I hope you wouldn’t turn people away.

 

Well, my governor has just ordered all government assistance to end in giving refugees aid. There is a child about 4 years of age.

  • Is this ok with you?
  • It isn’t ok to me.
  • It breaks my heart.

 

There are many of us who welcome refugees into this country because we can empathize with their situation no matter who they are. To me, it doesn’t matter what religion, what color, what race, what anything… What matters is that we do unto others as we would want to be treated. There is no other option to me.

 

There are terrible things being said—hateful things. I have been writing about attitudes for a long time now. It is up to us to reach out and do what is right. I cannot apologize for the way I see things. I do not like politics but I am being forced to get involved though I am only one person. I encourage you to get involved and let your voice be heard. We are to love all people…not just those who we want to be here or those who look like us. Many of us in the US have some European ancestry. Might I say that Europeans are not native to this land. People have become so selfish. That is what I see.

 

Again, I encourage you to get involved…call your legislature, governor, representatives. I hope you will show love to others and not judge everyone by the actions of some. We are all connected.

 

Happy Gardening! May your gardens be filled with an abundance of love. 🙂

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Some time back I started to live what I believed rather than saying what I believed. Then, I began to talk about it. I have written about some of the pivotal moments that caused me to see things in a different light. Each one of them involved people I personally knew—some I even taught in Sunday school—some were what I considered really good friends.

 

When you stand up in church and speak of how you are being inconvenienced by others who believe differently than you do, I don’t see that is right. When you say nasty things in church about our president and calling him the anti-christ, I see that as hate. When you tell me personally that you cannot love someone of another faith or of another color or just different than you, I see intolerance. Perhaps you say that you have been persecuted. I say that self-persecution does not count.

 

I still believe in God though my belief is and has been a lot different than many people but that’s my right. I’m not less of a person. I’m not less of a Christian. I’m not wrong. 🙂

 

You see, Jesus taught us to love all people. He didn’t come and tell us that we should shun people. He didn’t hide behind walls or fences. He came with open arms. When a Christian/minister stands before the congregation in church and says that “we” have been inconvenienced too much because “we” have been tolerant for too long and it is time to change…they are right. It is time to change but not in the way they believe.

 

I dare you to pick up a Christian Bible and study only the four gospels until you know them by heart and then I challenge you to walk Jesus’ walk…don’t add to it scripture wise…forget what Paul says…just for a bit. Leave the Old Testament behind. Listen to the stories that Jesus relays in the Bible. For those who do not believe, I still think the stories have great meaning—humility is the biggest facet of the New Testament. Pick up the cloak of humility, and slip on the sandals of Jesus…walk in that path—not the path of the teacher or the one who judges but the one who dines with the unfortunate, the ones who are despised by others. Talk with them and learn to see through their eyes. And, realize that the greatest commandment of love is the willingness to become last, give up your seat at the front, share a meal with those who have none…

 

I’m not confused about what I see and understand. I know exactly where I am and where I am headed. I have no fear of leaving this world and spending an eternity in fire because I stand up for people who are not welcome in this world. You have no right to tell anyone they are going to hell. I don’t care if you think you are doing the best for them. Place yourself in their shoes. Do you want to hear that you are going to hell? No one anointed you to be the judge and executioner. That’s what Jesus was trying to say. When we elevate our status above another, we cannot serve; we cannot be humble; we cannot be last… In other words… we will not be first if we are not last. So if you believe someone will burn in hell, you don’t know God and you do not understand forgiveness and grace. 🙂

 

Again, I challenge you to read and study the gospels…forget everything else for a bit and see through the eyes of Jesus and then place yourself in the place of the person he interacts with. It requires letting go of the checklists and how-tos and don’ts. It requires a pure heart with no hate. It requires having love and tolerance. Can you imagine someone preaching that Christians should be intolerant to others? Jesus’ mantra was tolerance…to offer the other cheek. You don’t get to a point where you say…hey, I’m fighting back because there is no fighting. There should only be love. 🙂

 

 May your gardens grow with tenderness and love. 🙂

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In a time where there is so much taking and not giving—when there seems to be so much selfishness and greed, there are still some who care—who love—who are so compassionate…

May we all aim to be

  • just a little more joyful
  • more cheerful
  • and maybe just a little more caring

 

This is my very favorite Mannheim Steamroller song…

 

 

Have a very Merry Christmas!

😀

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Thanksgiving for us in the States is this week and while everyone seems to insist it will become the first shopping day for Christmas sales, many people are still content on staying out of the stores and at home with loved ones being thankful for what we have together—and not just good food and football 😉 .

 

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Not much to choose from – these are the frozen ones – I chose one of these 🙂 . Maybe it will thaw in time to cook. 😀

 

For the last few years I have spent Thanksgiving with a friend’s family—big family. The girls and I went the first year their father was out doing his thing with his girlfriend. We spent Thanksgiving and Christmas with this friend from church for two years and I appreciate it so much but this year my children are all gone and one will be working Thanksgiving and the day after and the day after that so the plan is for me to make a turkey and take it to visit the daughter in town. I haven’t made a turkey in a long while so I hope I can still do it—preferably without burning myself as my Halloween burn is just starting to look pretty decent. 😀

 

I was reading Barb’s Thanksgiving post (link) when I was reminded of the one holiday that I am so thankful I will NEVER have to repeat and it goes something like this…

 

When my girls were very young, their other siblings—their father’s first children, came to visit either at Christmas or Thanksgiving—usually Thanksgiving or we would go there. This one year in particular there had been some discussion of us coming up but we couldn’t go for some reason—probably my husband’s work wouldn’t allow it. My husband’s mother wouldn’t have any of it and decided at the last minute to come visit us and bring the tribe with them.

 

I rearranged some things and cooked for at least 2 days—I made a big turkey and a smoked ham and several side dishes and pies and a cake and such. I made cornbread dressing…with all the fixings, sweet potato casserole, regular potatoes, corn, rolls, etc. and managed to clean and prepare everything even decorating for Christmas…back when it seemed I was Wonder Woman. I had enough food to feed the small army that we would have and all seemed to be going according to plan…except…

 

My mother-in-law had purchased a turkey and wanted to bring it with her. I kindly refused and thought the situation was remedied but no, it was not. My good old mom-in-law brought Tom Turkey in an ice chest on the twelve plus hour drive—raw, mind you—for me to cook when they arrived. Like I wanted to spend some extra hours cooking another dang bird… She thought it was funny. Well, that didn’t go well. I still say she did on purpose—sabotaging things—she was really good at it and those things that she did really hurt our marriage. I still say I could write a book about her and her ways but let’s just say this…

 

This thanksgiving I plan to give thanks that I will NEVER ever have to cook for their family again. I have no problem in saying this. It is good therapy. I remember our first Thanksgiving together was when my to-be-husband—my fiancé—took me to visit and meet all of the family before we married. My kind and so thoughtful mother-in-law-to-be allowed me to sleep in the dog bed (bottom bunk)—no, I’m not kidding. It was nasty and I should have gathered exactly what she thought of me back then and got the heck out of Dodge. But, I stuck it out through thick and thin and thinner. I raised two wonderful daughters and I am so very thankful for them today and every day. I regret other choices I have made but I have never regretted my children and never will. I tried in other respects with this family and as usual, nothing was good enough. But, I don’t have to worry about it anymore.

 

So, when we gather together this week, I will say thanks that I have had enough courage to stand up for what is right and know that I did my best. I will be thankful for the opportunity to do my best through all of the challenges that came to my door. I am thankful for the friends I have, the people I have met along the way—especially the ones who have helped me these last few years. I have had to separate myself from people that have judged me and I am better for it actually. As Bill (link) said this past week/end about Job’s friends…Job’s friends judged Job and were not really friends at all. They came to mock him and watch as he suffered not offering much in support—actually, I think they were waiting for God to strike him down 🙂 . Sometimes we have friends who are like this who gather like vultures and wait. I have lost some friends because of it–not everyone is your friend and has your back.

 

As for my children and their grandparents and family…their grandparents don’t have anything to do with the girls since they have not given them any great grandchildren. I’m shocked at their behavior and can only teach my children to act better and to try and forgive. I wish for my girls to have better family than this.

 

May your Thanksgiving be everything you want it to be and may you have everything you need. I give thanks for you all.

 Happy Thanksgiving!

🙂

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Today was Veterans Day (Happy Veterans Day to all of you out there). I noticed last night that Joanne’s was having a sale that ended today so I planned to run (drive by car) over and pick up some jewelry making supplies since they were 50% off (that is really good 🙂 ).

 

The Tennessee daughter called before I could get myself out of the house so I talked to her as I made breakfast and got ready. I don’t usually go out by myself—things happen when I do (hint)—and not good things. I wear dog-tags for a reason (medical alerts) but I never want them to be used if I can help it. I needed to be here to have lunch with the older daughter at 3 so I was in a hurry and wouldn’t you know it, my tires were low. I stopped by the gas station but that’s another story and was then on my way.

 

I decided to take the expressway—interstate…thinking that would be the quickest route and it usually is until I got on and found that traffic was bumper to bumper. You guessed it…a wreck…dad-blame it. What is with the traffic? It is like Christmas shopping season has begun. I started thinking I would be late. When I finally got to the store, I noticed the long line so I allowed myself about 20 minutes of “line time” and 15-20 minutes to get home with at least 10 minutes to spare. I didn’t plan for the next event…I should have known.

 

Side note:  My next topic at the counselor will be betrayal. I wasn’t ready to write about that yet but betrayal plays a big part in my life—betrayal, trust, and expectation. Ho-hum! 🙂

 

I left the store with plenty of time to spare, pulled out of my parking place ready to head to the expressway until this van pulled in front of me. Ok…each aisle is single laned…one-way with angled parking and no room for two-way traffic. I was going the correct way but Ms Van decided to go the wrong way. She wanted me to back up and let her through. I said, NO! I wasn’t going to give in because she was wrong. Usually, I would just move to the side to allow the other car to pass but there was no room and another car wanted to back out of their parking place, too.

 

Ms Van came closer. I was like… “What are you doing?” I kept thinking… “Is she really going to hit me?” I guess she was trying to scare me but she needs to find someone who isn’t flexing her ME powers 😀 .

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My drawing of a bully

 

I don’t like bullies and think people should not intimidate. I don’t like people who cannot follow driving laws such as direction, stop signs, red lights, etc. Oh, and the use of directionals is always a pet peeve of mine or the lack of. As I waited for her to move, she refused so I sat there and waited so more…she approached even closer trying this time to ram me. Head—desk (repeat)…

 

Ok. This takes me back to the road rage guy of 2013 who got so mad that he exited his car and came to beat on my window trying to break it so he could beat the pulp out of me and probably kill me. People around me were scared for me and got out to see if I was ok. I cannot believe people act this way. He tried to ram me a few times and was lying in wait for me when I reached downtown. I don’t like bullies and the cops were almost as bad. That’s another pet peeve especially after being a cop’s wife for so long.

 

Back to Ms Van who tried again to hit me. Maybe she gets her way all of the time. She wasn’t today. She was going to have to hit me and good ole me holding the phone ready to call 911. She never would back up—almost scraped the side of my car but here is the clincher…

 

Ms Van was sure to roll down her window and call me a “bit_h” (rhymes with witch).  I could not believe it. People are so unreal. She kept telling me I was in the wrong and yet the road is clearly marked with an arrow. I guess things do not apply to her because she is special. She is special all right…I watched her run a stop sign and a red light and am shocked she wasn’t hit. I don’t wish bad things but I cannot believe this happened. There was a point where she was going to get out of her van and come over to me… I don’t think that would have gone well because I will not act like I did the first time. Last year, I had 911 on the phone and the police still wouldn’t press charges or file a report. The 911 operator was really worried about me and I was too. I was spooked for several weeks.

 

Bullies…big bad bullies. That’s what she was. She was no different than the guy who came after me except he got out and personally tried to harm me. I did nothing to either one of them–just minding my own business. What did they expect when they acted like bullies? Did they feel vindicated? Did they feel righteous? I’m still trying to figure out what happened but sometimes there is nothing you can do.

 

Protect yourself and drive safely! 🙂

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