Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Well even though today was a day off work and we did get to relax and have a BBQ with family and friends but I didn't my post to be about that. I wanted to take time out to remember the men and women who have served in our military through out the years. How grateful I am for their sacrifice and service. Freedom doesn't come free!

I was looking on the news and found this story and photo of one such military family.

Paige Bennethum

Nearly a year ago, as Staff Sgt. Brett Bennethum was preparing to leave the country for Iraq with his Army unit, his family gave him a tearful goodbye. One member of the family—four-year-old Paige—didn’t want him to leave, however. She was so attached to her father that she held his hand until he boarded the plane, even as he stood in formation with his fellow troops. Paige’s mother, Abby, captured a photo of the powerful moment, and within the space of days, it had been broadcast all over the world. The touching image showed the pain of the sacrifices that soldiers and their families must make every day, and resonated with millions who’d faced similar challenges.

http://gimundo.com/news/article/soldiers-daughter-paige-bennethum-welcomes-father-home-from-iraq-for-good/

So thank you from our family, for all you do and have done.

 

"The secret of happiness is freedom. The secret of freedom is courage."  ~ Thucydides

"The cost of freedom is always high, but Americas have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."   ~ John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Where did the years go?

Twenty seven years ago I was in the hospital having my first baby. The Doctors didn't do many ultra-sounds then and so they were guessing it was a boy. I however was privileged to know all my kids before they were born. I had told them all along it was Amy coming, they begged to differ. At one last appointment the nurse said "Mrs. Woodard, I hope you aren't going to be disappointed, because by listening to your baby's heart beat we are almost for sure it is going to be a boy" then she added "and I think it is going to be a big boy at that!" My confident remark was " Well, I hope he is going to be real big so that he can defend himself, because we are going to name him Amy!"

I went into labor on Sunday morning and by that evening we thought Amy would be here. No such luck, I had the labor pains and contractions go off and on for over 20 some hours. Around 2:30pm the doctor comes in and tells us that he thinks the baby is just too big. After a few more exams they realized that the baby was no where in sight. After explaining all the options to us (which weren't many) he said " I think you are going to have to have a C-section." I was so upset, one because he was a jerk of a Doctor and was so rude to us, he was put out because he had to deliver this baby on Memorial Day and he had planned to go golfing, plus I was upset to have major surgery. I had never been in a hospital for overnight at all. I was terrified, we went to all the Lamaze classes and this isn't how we planned it. The last straw was when they told me that they would cut me from hip bone to hip bone for the C-section, I cried...scared yes plus, I never even got one stretch mark and now I would have this enormous scar. ( I soon realized later that would be the least of my worries.)

They put me asleep for the surgery, so around 3:30pm or so, I remember Jeff trying to wake me up to tell me that I was right, it was Amy. He then told me she weighed 10 lbs 1oz and had lots of dark hair! I was thinking that maybe he is the one that had the drugs... how could I have a 10 lb baby, isn't that consider a toddler? Plus, where did the dark hair come from, we were both blondes?

 

Next thing I knew they put this huge beautiful baby in my arms and I was amazed. After imagining for 9 months what she would look like...I was still surprised. I couldn't believe that my Amy girl was finally here, safe and sound. Having been asleep when she was born, I was a bit concerned, what if they gave me the wrong baby, how would I ever know? Then Jeff told me to look at her little feet, she had webbed toes, just like mine. Yes, surely this was my Amy girl that I had been waiting for! :)

black shoes

Now here we are 27 years later and I sometimes still look at her ( as well as all my kids and now my grand-kids) and I am amazed that they are really mine. How grateful I feel to be able to be their mother and Nana. Amy is a beautiful grown woman, with a family of her own now. Where did the years go? How thankful I am for Amy, she is one of the happiest people I know. She truly loves life to its fullest ( a great lesson for me ). She is a hard worker, a true friend, a talented lady in music, art and just about anything she decides to do. She is a bit O.C.D. but that works out pretty well for me because I am a bit A. D. D. It is a good balance. She was our first and so likes she likes to put it...she was our guinea pig. Ok, so we did learn a few things that we would or would not do again after trying them out on her. But remember we were new at this parenthood game!  She was a little mother to all the rest of the kids and still to this day can organize anything and anybody. She has been the love of our life for over 27 years. How grateful we are that she is our Amy girl! Happy Birthday sweetheart, we love ya!

"A parent's love is whole no matter how many times divided."  ~Robert Brault

"Making the decision to have a child is momentous.  It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body."  ~Elizabeth Stone

"Growing up is a process, not an event."

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Making the appointment!

Two days ago when I was in my Doctor's office having my lungs checked for pneumonia, he began discussing a game plan to help my immune system. One of the things that he talked about is that I need to keep up with my regular mammogram's and MRI's. Now that isn't something I didn't know, but I have to admit it has been something that I have been struggling with for over a year now. I know that I can't just shut my eyes and never be checked again. I know that I will be watched and screened more closely than most women because I have already had cancer twice. My mammogram's go way longer and in depth that most, that is not exactly painless or comforting. I am struggling with the whole thing. After my first cancer ( which I found and was missed on a mammogram ) I would get nearly sick every year for my annual check up. I always took Jeff or someone else with me for security reasons.

I remember one day sitting in the waiting room and noticed that this older lady was also waiting and she seemed very nervous. Of course I had to talk to her :). After some small talk, we began to share our stories with each other. She too was a cancer survivor almost 9 years and she said "still I get sick for weeks before I have these appointments." I was sorry for her fear, but so grateful to know I wasn't the only one that felt that way.

1 1/2 years ago, I was going in for my annual mammogram and check up. I had been in remission for 7 years. I was surprised  to look at my calendar and see that I had my appointment soon and hadn't really been worrying about it. After all ...that say once you pass your 5 year mark, you probably are safe from getting it again. I remember Jeff asking me if I wanted him to go with me and I said " Actually, I think I am fine this time. I will be ok" You know the history from there,  I was going to go change after the mammogram and they called me back in, after a few more mammogram's, I was asked to come back the next month 10 days into my cycle. I knew at that moment I had cancer, I thought how could this happen to me again?

Fast forward to today, I did have more than one cancerous tumor, which had spread, I had a mastectomy on my left side and then did 3 months of radiation, Physical Therapy for Lymodemia, and my immune system has never  been  the same since. Do I want to go back into the medical arena and have them look for more cancer? "NO" Will I do it..."YES". The hardest thing is making the appointment. I did set up appointments twice in the last year, but and a week or so before... I got so scared that I canceled them. I know  you are probably thinking, "Lynn, you of all people should know to be proactive in watching out for cancer". That is true, I also know what it feels like to start living again and trying to put cancer behind me and really enjoy life. I know what it feels like to start making future plans and even begin to dream again. Yes, I will go to my appointment in June (which I made on Thursday) but I need to be honest on how hard it is. Those who have never had cancer will never understand this, but those who have, I need for them to know that they are not alone in their feelings. Next I just need to work on my faith. I know that my Heavenly Father loves me, I know that He knows me personally and will give me the comfort and strength to do what I need to do. But I also know that many of life's decisions are not easy ones, those are the ones I pray for more strength and courage.

Thanks for you love, support and encouragement through this whole journey with me. You have been an incredible blessing in my life. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

"When you have to make a choice and don't make it, that is in itself a choice."  ~William James

"Life is the sum of all your choices."  ~Albert Camus

"Using the power of decision gives you the capacity to get past any excuse to change any and every part of your life in an instant."  ~Anthony Robbins

Friday, May 28, 2010

Looking out our own windows

I was grateful for my sister-in-law sending me this cute poem, which had a profound meaning.

WINDOW THROUGH WHICH WE LOOK

A young couple moved into a new neighborhood.
The next morning while they were eating breakfast,The young woman saw her neighbor hanging the wash outside.
"That laundry is not very clean", she said.
"She doesn't know how to wash correctly.
Perhaps she needs better laundry soap."

Her husband looked on, but remained silent.
Every time her neighbor would hang her wash to dry,
The young woman would make the same comments.
About one month later, the woman was surprised to see a
Nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband:

"Look, she has learned how to wash correctly.
I wonder who taught her this."

The husband said, "I got up early this morning and
Cleaned our windows."

And so it is with life. What we see when watching others
Depends on the purity of the window through which we look.

I really loved this! A great reminder for us all! Good night!

 

"JUDGEMENTS PREVENT US FROM SEEING THE GOOD THAT LIES BEYOND APPEARANCES" ~ Wayne Dyer

"EVERYTHING THAT IRRITATES US ABOUT OTHERS CAN LEAD US TO AN UNDERSTANDING OF OURSELVES"                     ~ Carl Gustay Jung

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Leaning into the curves

Today is Jeff's birthday, he really didn't remember that, but all of us did. I am not sure if Jeff's family made a big deal out of birthdays or most holidays but to celebrate each birthday and holiday is our family tradition. I don't know, life is just hard enough...I think it is important to remember those special days in our lives. We went out to lunch today (after my  Dr. gave me the ok, that my pneumonia was gone ) and then we went to a book store for a minute. One book title that caught my attention was called Learning to lean into the curves or something like that. I didn't even  have to pick it up to understand what the title meant, I have heard Jeff say that more than one occasion.

I got Jeff a motorcycle a couple of years ago, many of my friends told me that is the craziest thing I could have ever done. They didn't want their husbands to have one, they are just too dangerous. Well, if you would have told me that years ago, I would have agreed with you 100%, but ever since I was diagnosed with Cancer, my perspective in life has changed some. I don't want to be living life scared of a lot of things, like I have done most of my life. Now remember, it isn't me that bought a motorcycle for myself, but for Jeff. I had no idea that he always dreamed of having one. My logic was, the money was given to me and even though we put most of it to good sensible uses...paying of bills and putting some away for college for the kids, paying for my cancer bills...I felt a real need to get Jeff something that he would really love. I had no idea when I asked him, that it would be a motorcycle. Yes, I thought they were just too dangerous but for some reason I knew that he was a grown man, who had spent most of his adult life being the most incredible husband and father. He never asks for anything for himself, he never even took too  much time when the kids were growing up to do things for himself. I don't think I have ever given a gift that was so appreciated in my life. He can hardly wait each morning to check the weather and see if he can ride his bike to work. Wouldn't it be great if we all had something that brought such joy and pleasure to us each day that we could hardly wait to get up?

lauren and Jeff with motorcycle

Now having said that, I have to admit that riding with him on the bike scares me to death. It isn't actually my thing. Lucky for Jeff some of his kids don't feel that way, and can't wait to ride with  him... as you can see in the photo with Lauren. I actually rode on it with him on my 50th birthday, never prayed so hard in all my life! :) I had a real problem with the curves. Jeff and the bike would lean one way and I would lean the other. I just knew if I leaned with him that we were going to fall over and think of all the injuries!  ( See, obviously I am not there yet ).

I do think that learning to lean into the curves has a bigger and more profound meaning that just on motorcycles. I think it applies to life, so often we fight the hard parts, the scary parts and so we often  pull too much the other way, making it dangerous that way too. So tonight as I think of Jeff and the many things I have learned from him throughout the (almost) 32 years that we have been together, and I feel blessed. He is my best friend and even though life hasn't been easy for us, we have certainly learned how together to lean into the curves that life has thrown us. Now if only I could learn to do that on his bike.... someday! Happy Birthday Jeff!

"May you live all the days of your life."   ~ Jonathan Swift

"Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made."
  
~ Robert Browning

"No wise man ever wished to be younger."   ~ Jonathan Swift

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Genealogy

In the last few days the kids and I have been working on a photo book to have printed for Jeff's Father's Day. So we have frantically been looking up old photos and having each person write a letter to him and tell some of their favorite things about him also. As I have read the letters from the kids, I realized what a great genealogy gift this will be to our grand-kids some day. I love the memories and funny things the kids had to say. I love looking at the photos and how everyone has grown. We laughed at the style of clothing the kids used to have, or Jeff and I used to have. I laughed at some of the funny things the kids remembered about Jeff. Each photo seemed to trigger a favorite memory, so we are excited to give this SECRET gift to him soon!

My grandmother was big into genealogy and Jeff has done quite a bit with his family but I really haven't done much of it ( at least traditionally speaking ) yet. I always tease Jeff if he stays at the computer too long doing genealogy and we haven't had much time with him that day,  "Jeff, remember you need to spend time with the LIVE ONES too!" These photo books are amazing and so much easier and faster than the old traditional scrapbooks ( I am not knocking those, I have many of those I have done too!).  I did one for Jeff and I's 25th wedding anniversary. Then the kids and Jeff did one for me, for my 50 birthday last year. What a treasure that is. As we were going through the photos we realized that we need to do a photo memory book for each family member. We have ordered ours from Shutterfly, there are other companies out there, but that is the only one we have used so far and we have been more than impressed with them. It is all done through the computer (thanks to Amy) and then printed into a hard bound book, they really are quite a keepsake.

So tonight I realized there are many ways to do genealogy but the important thing is that we do it, because we all have a legacy to preserve. Remember you are never to  young to start searching and studying about your family tree!

"Genealogy  is the study of one's family, the study of our ancestors -their birth, their childhood, their dreams, their marriages, their occupations, their children, their deaths, and because these things in the past all have an impact on the present, in a very real sense, genealogy is a study of ones self."

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one."     ~Jane Howard

"Family faces are magic mirrors. Looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present and future."          ~ Gail Lumet Buckley

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Canning/Family Nights

When I was a young girl and until I left home, I remember canning with my mom and grandmother. I remember how long and hard the process was, it seemed to take all day... all week! I remember my grandmother insisting that we follow her instructions to the detail, no steps were to be skipped. We had to pick the best and freshest fruit and vegetables, each one hand inspected. I remember the HEAT in the kitchen, I couldn't figure out why we couldn't can in the winter or when it was cooler! :) I remember the smells in the whole house, it was incredible. I remember being so tired and then still having to clean up. I remember the feeling of pride when we would line the jars upon the shelves. I remember my grandma saying "Lynn, you will never get anything from the grocery store that tastes as good as when you have canned it  yourself!" I have to admit...it's true! So when I start wondering why people go to that much work to can, when they could just buy it at the store?  I remind myself of the type of quality and the amount of love that goes in to each one of those jars and honestly I believe it's worth it.

Last night was Family night for us, we have done it every Monday night since the kids were born. I believe that Family Night is a lot like canning, it helps us preserve our families. Every Family Night will be a little bit different ( just like the tastes and ingredients are different) . And just like only putting in the best fruit, each of the family members need to add something good to Family Night, by participating. Family Night should be a joint effort and most of all like canning, it is rewarding to see the fruits of your labors. But our Family Nights have changed throughout the years.

Stages of canning and Family Night...

Newly wed...I just wanted to be the ultimate wife and mother, only the best for Jeff and Amy. I couldn't imagine some of those mothers out there that fed their husbands and children those store bought fruit and veggies ( how could they sleep at night?). Family night consisted of Jeff, Amy and I. The lessons were short and very simple but still Amy loved Family Night.

Mother of 4 little ones...At this time in my life I was so busy and tired that I hardly had time to open a can of food for the kids. I couldn't even think about canning, and thought I must have been crazy to ever think that I could keep that up! I also convinced myself that Grandma and Mom could have never been as busy as I was or they would have never canned. And to be honest I even tried to convince myself that the taste wasn't  that much difference. Family Night was a bit chaotic to say the least. We could hardly make it through one evening without someone whining or complaining about his brother or sister was touching him or worse yet...looking at him! It was a rare Family Night if it ended without someone crying or going to Time Out!

Mother of 4 growing kids... My conscience got the best of me and I realized that I needed to start teaching my kids ( now that they are big enough)  to start growing our own food and canning it. At this time we had moved far from home and I realized I had to do it by myself (except for the occasional phone call to mom or my grandma for help). It was harder and messier than I  had remembered, but boy were the kids and I ever proud to line up those jars on the shelf. Family Night got a bit easier, because everyone was anxious to participate. Someone would say the prayer, another one lead the opening song, someone would help hold up visual aids for the lesson and someone else would help with the treats.

Mother of 4 pigs...This stage was the hardest, the kids were bigger and would eat anything and everything in front of them. I remember canning all week with them and by the next week or so, half of our jars were eaten already. One night Jeff came home and I was crying, when he asked what was wrong, I told him after all the work we did on canning and teaching the kids  how to do it. After all the mess and time it took ...the kids just went and ATE THEM! I just knew they couldn't have tasted the goodness of it being homemade when they ate it so fast! Family night got a bit harder, kids were having homework and projects due. They complained about how everyone else that they knew, didn't have to spend one night a week together we did! Still we pushed through and used our lessons to focus on the problems we were experiencing in our home. Every now and then we got a rolling of the eyes, especially if they knew we were talking about them, in a subtle way of course.

Mother of teenagers...Now at this stage the closest thing we got to call canning... was opening a # 10 size can from Costco for dinner. I believe those cans are bigger than my grandmother herself! But that seemed to be all the time I had back then. Family night got even harder still, there were sports activities, school activities, work, homework, and of course social lives to consider. There were weeks that we weren't able to do Family Night on Mondays, so we would do it a day earlier on Sundays. Still we had to really work out our time together, but I do believe it made a difference. Everyone's schedules were so busy and full, but I was glad that we made the sacrifice of times and schedules to have our weekly Family Nights.

So as you can see our Family Nights were a lot like canning, important but we definitely went through different stages. As we sat down together last night, just Jeff, Lee and I ...I remembered that even though there are only 3 of us left, it is still vital to take the time out to be together and to teach Lee, but I have to admit...it feels a bit different and a bit lonely!

Having Family Night was challenging to say the least and there were times when we wondered if we were even making a difference in our kids lives? But like canning, there was a lot of time, effort and love involved and I believe that it was most definitely worth it! I guess Grandma was right!

My Family

"No success can compensate for failure in the home"  ~ David O. McKay

"It is so plainly evident that both the great good and the terrible evil found in the world today are the sweet and bitter fruits of the rearing of  yesterday's children. As we train a new generation, so will the world be in a few years. If we are worried about the future, then we must look today at the upbringing of children"  ~ Gordon B. Hinckley

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing!"   ~ Edmond Burke

Monday, May 24, 2010

Patience

I asked myself this past week what I am suppose to be learning? I am just sitting, not really able to do more, or my breathing gets quite labored. Usually even if I am sick, I still feel like doing something. That is not the case when I have pneumonia, it drains me in a way that I have no desire to do anything. I realize that I need to be more patient. That is hard to do some times, especially when the world and everyone in it, seemed to be going on around me. I ask in my prayers, how can I serve others when I can't even take care of my home and family? Yes, patience is obviously what I need to work on.

Tonight for Family Home Evening, we were going over our calendar for the week and then our lesson was on Patience...how appropriate for me. I will share some of the lesson with you, in hopes that it might be of some benefit.

In the Bible in the book of Romans 5:3-5 we read, through our trials we gain 3 things...Hope, Experience and Patience. In our lesson tonight we learned that from Patience we will cultivate our character, lift our lives and heighten our happiness. All good reasons to have more patience in our trials!

In the lesson we read...Waiting can be hard. Children know it, and so do adults. We live in a world offering fast food, instant messaging, on-demand movies, and immediate answers to the most trivial or profound questions. We don't like to wait. Some even feel their blood pressure rise when their line at the grocery store moves slower than those around them.

Patience----- the ability to put our desires on hold for a time-----is a precious and rare virtue. We want what we want, and we want it now. Therefore, the very idea of patience may seem unpleasant and, at times, bitter.

I learned that patience was far more than simply waiting for something to happen--- patience required actively working toward worthwhile goals and not getting discouraged when results didn't appear instantly or without effort.

There is an important concept here: patience is not passive resignation, nor is it failing to act because of our fears. Patience means active waiting and enduring. It means staying with something and doing all that we can----working, hoping, and exercising faith; bearing hardship with fortitude, even when the desires of our hearts are delayed. Patience is not simply enduring; it is enduring well!  ~ Dieter F. Uchtdorf

So once again, I will remember to try and be more patient. Try to remember the lessons I need to be learning. And I realize, that I only will learn them if I will be more faithful, hopeful and strive to endure my life's experiences well...even when they don't seem fair. Life...it is certainly a learning experience.

 

"PATIENCE IS WAITING. NOT PASSIVELY WAITING. THAT IS LAZINESS. BUT TO KEEP GOING WHEN THE GOING IS HARD AND SLOW--THAT IS PATIENCE." ~ Unknown

"Patience is the companion of wisdom."  ~Saint Augustine


"PATIENCE AND FORTITUDE CONQUER ALL THINGS"   ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

( My dear daughter-in-law is good at photography too, I am surrounded by a whole family of talented people, aren't I lucky? )

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Never Lose Your Faith

Father's Day is coming soon and I was reading an article the other day about not losing our faith. It was inspiring to say the least, and so I will share part of it with you tonight...

"Two weeks ago I received a touching letter from a father of seven who wrote about his family and, in particular, his son Jason, who had become ill when 11 years of age. Over the next few years, Jason's illness recurred several times. This father told of Jason's positive attitude and sunny disposition, despite his  health challenges. He received his Eagle Scout Award when he was 14 years old.

"Last summer, not long after Jason's 15th birthday, he was once again admitted to the hospital. On one of his visits to see Jason, his father found him with his eyes closed. Not knowing whether Jason was asleep or awake, he began talking softly to him. 'Jason,' he said, 'I know you have been through a lot in your short life and that your current condition is difficult. Even though you have a giant battle ahead, I don't ever want you to lose your faith in Jesus Christ.' He said he was startled as Jason immediately opened his eyes and said 'Never!' in a clear, resolute voice. Jason then closed his eyes and said no more.

"His father wrote, 'In this simple declaration, Jason expressed one of the most powerful, pure testimonies of Jesus Christ that I have ever heard...As his declaration of "Never!" became imprinted on my soul that day, my heart filled with joy that my Heavenly Father had blessed me to be the father of such a tremendous and noble boy."  ~ Thomas S. Monson

As a mother, that is my greatest joy, just like the scriptures say in 3 John 1:4 "I HAVE NO GREATER JOY THAN TO HEAR THAT MY CHILDREN WALK IN TRUTH".

I hope every day that my kids and grand-kids will have that type of faith. That no matter what happens to them that they will have faith in Jesus Christ to sustain them and help them through. That I believe, would be the greatest thing I could help them with as a mom and a grandmother (Nana). Good night dear friends!

"GREAT FAITH HAS A SHORT SHELVE LIFE"

"TRUE STRENGTH COMES FROM HUMBLE RELIANCE ON GOD"

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Date night

Well, you can't be real creative on your Date Nights if your wife is sick. But still Jeff rented a movie for us and it was nice to just be together. The movie that he chose was ... "Invictus" (Warner/Blu-ray, 2009, PG-13). Morgan Freeman is a commanding presence as Nelson Mandela in this true story of how the South African leader used the power of the nation's passion for rugby to bring blacks and whites together after apartheid was abolished. And Matt Damon matches him as the captain of the team, who is quite surprised when Mandela asks him to win the World Cup!

It was an inspiring movie about unity, forgiveness and faith. It isn't that often that you finish a movie or leave a movie and feel inspired, it was nice. The poem that the movie was named after is here below. It was another reminder to me that we are in control of what we do, say and think. Many times I think we might forget that. What a powerful movie!

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the Pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate;

I am the captain of my soul. ~by William Ernest Henley; 1849-1903

"IF MEN DO NOT COMPREHEND THE CHARACTER OF GOD, THEN THEY DO NOT COMPREHEND THEMSELVES"            ~ Joseph Smith

 

"WATCH YOUR THOUGHTS, FOR THEY BECOME WORDS.

WATCH YOUR WORDS, FOR THEY BECOME ACTIONS.

WATCH YOUR ACTIONS, FOR THEY BECOME HABITS.

WATCH YOUR HABITS, FOR THEY BECOME CHARACTER.

WATCH YOUR CHARACTER, FOR IT BECOMES YOUR DESTINY." ~ Unknown

Friday, May 21, 2010

Just information

When I was diagnosed for the second time with Cancer, I signed up for latest medical updates online. It was with a web-site that I had gone to, for just information at the time. Since then, they continue to send me the latest information out there. I am always amazed at how in just a year and a half, information can change. What used to be safe is no longer safe. What used to be the only way, is no longer a healthy option. Yes, it is just information but...it is ever changing.

Some days I read all about it, other days I don't. Some times it scares me and other times it enlightens me. We live in a world that keeps trying to tell us if 10  people did it and it worked, then it must be right for everyone. I am guilty of that myself, if something worked for me then I share it with a friend or family member and swear that it is a for sure thing ( because it worked for me ). I guess that is called our ROSE COLORED GLASSES. I am beginning to understand more at my ripe old age of 50 1/2, not everything is for everybody! Why is that?

Because we are all different, from our genetic make up to our upbringing. Even people who come from the same family can have totally different experiences or outlook on things. Life is individual, life is personal, life is all about finding the right information for ourselves. Haven't  you wondered why something that has been tried and true for so many, didn't work for you? I thought about this whole thing when one of my nieces told me she was having trouble with her child eating and sleeping enough. She has been diligent in studying and reading everything that she can get her hands on ...with no results. Why is that? Same reason, her little one is different, an individual and her own little person. The truth is somehow those little kids grow up just fine, against all the odds. But that is hard to remember when you are sleep deprived!

I am grateful that we can find out what information we need about anything in life and then have the opportunity to study and pray about it, to see if it is right for us. Now that is not just information but the right information for you. In the Bible in the book of James 1:5 we read...' IF ANY OF YOU LACK WISDOM, LET HIM ASK OF GOD, THAT GIVETH TO ALL MEN LIBERALLY, AND UPBRAIDETH NOT; AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN HIM.' Now that scripture right ,gives me a lot of peace. As I continue to receive information about cancer or anything else in the world, there is a place I can go to see what is right for me and for that I am eternally grateful.

 

"ALL TRUTHS ARE EASY TO  UNDERSTAND ONCE THEY ARE DISCOVERED; THE POINT IS TO DISCOVER THEM"         ~ Galileo Galilei

"KNOWING A GREAT DEAL IS NOT THE SAME AS BEING SMART; INTELLIGENCE IS NOT INFORMATION ALONE BUT ALSO JUDGEMENT, THE MANNER IN WHICH INFORMATION IS COLLECTED AND USED" ~ Dr. Carl Sagan


"UNLESS YOUR HEART, YOUR SOUL, AND YOUR WHOLE BEING ARE BEHIND EVERY DECISION YOU MAKE, THE WORDS FROM YOUR MOUTH WILL BE EMPTY, AND EACH ACTION WILL BE MEANINGLESS. TRUTH AND CONFIDENCE ARE THE ROOTS OF HAPPINESS"

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just Breath!

I don't think we truly appreciate something until we lose it or don't have it available to us anymore. I have had that problem these past few days with breathing. I got sick while in SLC and I knew I needed to get home as soon as I could. I was grateful that I had enough strength and AIR to fly home.

Today I went to the DR and the results are in... I still have bronchitis and pneumonia. I actually already knew that by the way I felt, but at least we were able to talk about what I needed to do and the steps we are going to try and take to get my immune system up and functioning again. I am grateful that Dr. Kraft is so compassionate and attentive. He has a great spirit about him.

So once again, I am grounded. I know it is for my own good but oh....this is getting old. I was hoping now that summer was on its way, that maybe so was better health. I guess I just need to be more patient. Thanks for all the calls and emails. A dear friend even brought us over dinner tonight. I am telling you, there are ANGELS here on earth. For them, I am truly grateful.

I pray that all of you are well and happy. I pray that you will be grateful for the ability to just BREATH! It sure makes life a lot easier when you do! Good night!

"Breathing is the greatest pleasure in life."  ~Giovanni Papini

"Focusing on the act of breathing clears the mind of all daily distractions and clears our energy enabling us to better connect with the Spirit within."  ~Author Unknown

"Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less, breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours."  ~Swedish Proverb

"If you woke up breathing, congratulations!  You have another chance."  ~Andrea Boydston

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Quality Employees

After this past year of the lay offs with Jeff's company, it makes you wonder how valuable you are to your employer? Seems like a thing of the past to be with a company for a long time, loyalty doesn't seem to be something that is valued like it used to be. This story was a perfect example of what it should be. People caring about people first.

Jessie's Glove

I do a lot of management training each year for the Circle K Corporation, a national chain of convenience stores. Among the topics we address in our seminars is the retention of quality employees - a real challenge to managers when you consider the pay scale in the service industry. During these discussions, I ask the participants, "What has caused you to stay long enough to become a manager?" Some time back a new manager took the question and slowly, with her voice almost breaking, said, "It was a $19 baseball glove." Cynthia told the group that she originally took a Circle K clerk job as an interim position while she looked for something better. On her second or third day behind the counter, she received a phone call from her nine-year old son, Jessie. He needed a baseball glove for Little League. She explained that as a single mother, money was very tight, and her first check would have to go for paying bills. Perhaps she could buy his baseball glove with her second or third check. When Cynthia arrived for work the next morning, Patricia, the store manager, asked her to come to the small room in back of the store that served as an office. Cynthia wondered if she had done something wrong or left some part of her job incomplete from the day before. She was concerned and confused. Patricia handed her a box. "I overheard you talking to your son yesterday," she said, "and I know that it is hard to explain things to kids. This is a baseball glove for Jessie because he may not understand how important he is, even though you have to pay bills before you can buy gloves. You know we can't pay good people like you as much as we would like to; but we do care, and I want you to know you are important to us." The thoughtfulness, empathy and love of this convenience store manager demonstrates vividly that people remember more how much an employer cares than how much the employer pays. An important lesson for the price of a Little League baseball glove.
Author - Rick Phillips  (Source: Heart At Work) feelmotivated.com

 

"A good reputation is more valuable than money." ~ Publilius Syrus


"Count your blessings. Once you realize how valuable you are and how much you have going for you, the smiles will return, the sun will break out, the music will play, and  you will finally be able to move forward the life that God intended for you with grace, strength, courage, and confidence." ~ Og Mandino

 

 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Home again!

I really can't write too much tonight, still not feeling well. By the time I unpacked and got a few groceries in the house, I was gone. Oh well. It was great to be home and to see Lee and Jeff again. It was a different trip this time. Not one of fun and exciting things to do, I was mostly in bed or laying down. But I am home now and hope to get better soon.  It is hard to be sick when you are away from home.  It has been discouraging to say the least ...to be sick again.  Oh well, good night dear friends.

"Home is not where you live, but where they understand you"   ~ Christian Morganstern

"There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again."  ~ Margaret Elizabeth Sangster

"Sickness shows us what we are" ~ Latin Proverb

 

Monday, May 17, 2010

Problems

When I was a little girl my grandmother used to always say..."If everyone's  problems were hung out on the line, you'd take yours and I'd take mine". She then explained that no matter how bad you think your problems are, if you just stop to look around at someone else's problems then ours don't look so bad. I found this story that has the same theme. So instead of telling you how bad I feel today and how I worried I am that I will always be sick like this... I will leave you with this inspiration story of the Sorrow Tree.

Good night dear friends.

The Sorrow Tree


So it was that when the Hasidic pilgrims vied for those among them who had endured the most suffering, who was most entitled to complain, the Zaddck told them the story of the Sorrow Tree. On the Day of Judgment, each person will be allowed to hang one's unhappiness and sufferings on a brach of the great Tree of Sorrows. After all have found a limb from which their miseries may dangle, they may all walk slowly around the tree. Each person is to search for a set of sufferings that he or she would prefer to those he or she has hung on the tree.

In the end, each one freely chooses to reclaim his or her own assortment of sorrows rather than those of another. Each person leaves the Tree of Sorrows wiser that when he or she arrived.   by: Brian Cavanaugh, T.O.R., The Sower's Seeds

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Bigger than me day

The last few days I have been getting a bad cold, last night it seemed to go deep into my chest and by morning I knew that I had pneumonia again. My chest hurts so bad and my breathing is very labored. I was able to get a hold of my wonderful DR back home and he too thought it might be pneumonia and called in a prescription for me. Hopefully it should get in by tomorrow morning.

I wondered what I could do because I had to speak tonight. I stayed in bed all day, only got up to say good bye to my kids when they left to go back to college ( in Idaho ). Man, I was a basket case. I cry normally because I always miss them but today was different, I was sick and wanted them to stay with me. I don't like being this sick away from home.

I prayed that I would be given the strength to be there tonight and present the message that I had prepared. It went ok, but definitely it wasn't a good as it should have been but...I was soooooooo sick. Everyone was kind and said it went well but...  I think differently. I do hope though that someone walked away from there with more hope, faith and strength, even if it was one person, it would have been enough. And as always, I was more than grateful to be with such incredible women ( and men ). Many of my family and friends came too so it was wonderful. I only wished I had felt better to enjoy it more.

I need to try to sleep, although I can't breath well and usually that doesn't help bring sleep on.

Good night dear friends, I pray you are well and happy?

"The greatest healing therapy is friendship and love."
-- Hubert Humphrey

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The best is yet to be!

Today was a busy day, we had the baby shower for my great niece and afterwards we had a family cook out. I have been catching a cold for the last few days and so I tried to stay away from the babies. I tried to put on...MY GAME FACE  as they say, but I struggled all day to be up and around. I am having a hard time breathing, it feels like someone is sitting on my chest. I had pneumonia 2 months ago and I know this type of feeling isn't good. I am praying hard that I will feel better tomorrow. Some times I get discouraged when I seem to get sick so often. It seems like I can't even be around someone that is even a little bit sick without catching it. To say that I am discouraged is an understatement. I don't want to be sick when I talk tomorrow night. I don't want to have this sick man's voice to speak with either but...come what may, if I am suppose to talk and share my story with those women tomorrow night, then somehow I will be given the strength to do so. Please keep me in your prayers.

I am heading to bed. I will leave you with this quote that reminded me not to give up and try and remember the best is yet to be. Good night dear friends and  hear is a sweet photo of that beautiful little baby we were celebrating today.

“There are cycles of good and bad times, ups and downs, periods of joy and sadness, and times of plenty as well as scarcity. When our lives turn in an unanticipated and undesirable direction, sometimes we experience stress and anxiety. One of the challenges of this mortal experience is to not allow the stresses and strains of life to get the better of us—to endure the varied seasons of life while remaining positive, even optimistic. Perhaps when difficulties and challenges strike, we should have these hopeful words of Robert Browning etched in our minds: 'The best is yet to be' ("Rabbi Ben Ezra," in Charles W. Eliot, ed., The Harvard Classics, 50 vols. [1909–10], 42:1103).”  ~ L. Tom Perry

"A child fills a place in your heart you never knew was empty."

"From small beginnings come great things"

Friday, May 14, 2010

Gratitude and the Dishwasher

The other morning I had an experience that reminded me to once again be grateful for that still small voice inside of all of us; the one that  helps or warns us. The dishwasher was full  the night before, but I never like to turn and leave it on, when I am not home or during the night. Since it was a late night for me, I decided to ask Lee and Jeff to just eat cereal the next morning instead of me getting up. I actually like getting up and fixing them breakfast each morning, but I was worn out and it was late so... I left Jeff a note to turn it on when they left for school and work.

I was sound asleep at 5:00 a.m. I didn't even hear Jeff's alarm go off... but all of a sudden I woke up with an impression to to tell Jeff to turn the dishwasher on before he took a shower and not when they left. I ignored the feeling and kept thinking... if I sit up and start talking then I know for sure that I will wake up, so I tried to go back to sleep. The impression came again but this time it was a little stronger, finally I realized that I needed not to ignore this feeling, and I sat up and asked Jeff to turn the dishwasher on. He just looked at me, I know he was surprised because he thought I was sound asleep ( which I was! ). When I asked him to do that he said " Ok, I will do it as soon as I get out of the shower", I said  "No, could you please do it right now before your shower?" He finally said "Yes" and I laid back down to sleep.

When I woke up at 8:00 a.m. I noticed a different smell in the house, I didn't really think too much about it, until I saw the dishwasher door open and a note left in it. The note was from Jeff and it said... LYNN, DON'T TURN THE DISHWASHER BACK ON BECAUSE IT WAS SMOKING WHEN LEE AND I WERE EATTING BREAKFAST, I WILL CHECK IT OUT WHEN I GET HOME. I felt overwhelmed with gratitude that I had followed that prompting, I knew it wasn't just a weird dream or something. I knew that my Heavenly Father was watching over me and my family at that very moment and I was thankful.

Later that night when Jeff found out what the problem was and checked on the Internet about it, he realized that there had been a lot of recalls about the very same problem. The electrical fire in the door was dangerous so after calling the company, they sent someone right out to check it out. Of course we still haven't got our dishwasher fixed yet but ...I don't care, that seems like a little consequence compared to what could have happened.

I know that seems like a little thing but for some reason, I believe it is all those little things that have some of the greatest effects on our lives. So some might say it is just a coincident, but I know better.

I know miracles happen every day, but many times we are just too busy to recognize them. This was a reminder to me to once again...slow down and listen to that still small voice inside of us. When I do, it has never lead me wrong.

Good night dear friends! 

"Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see."  ~ C. S. Lewis

"Impossible situations can become possible miracles." ~ Robert H. Schuller

 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

kite/children

I found this quote about children and how fast they grow. It made me think of it as I looked at this photo of our youngest son Lee turning 17, and having our 4 year old granddaughter Angie on his lap. How did that happen? For all you young moms out there, please take a deep breath and slow down, and try to savor every moment with your little ones, even if that means just snuggling and changing diapers. Time truly does fly! Trust me on this one!

You spend years trying to get them off the ground.

You run with them until you are both breathless. They crash ... they hit the roof ... you patch, comfort and assure them that someday they will fly.

Finally, they are airborne.

They need more string, and you keep letting it out.

They tug, and with each twist of the twine, there is sadness that goes with joy.

The kite becomes more distant, and you know it won't be long before that beautiful creature will snap the lifeline that binds you together and will soar as meant to soar ... free and alone.

Only then do you know that you have done your job.

Author unknown

 

"We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today."  ~Stacia Tauscher

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

True friends

Tonight was my first speaking appointment since I have been here in Utah. It went well except for a couple of things. I had friends that were going to come, but didn't show up. I wasn't sure if it was because of the terrible weather that was coming down tonight? Or if it was too far to come,  or if something else came up at the last minute or a million other reasons?  No matter what the reason was, I was just missed them. 

I felt good about my whole presentation and  of course it wouldn't have been near the success, without my family's help in more than one area.It was a treat once again to meet such incredible women with such incredible stories. Life is hard and wonderful all at the same time.

My topic tonight was about how we take care of our spiritual gardens. I was very grateful that it wasn't about real gardens because I really don't have a green thumb. I even confessed my story about the Aloe Plant :) If you don't know that one, then  go back to the top of my blog and put Aloe Plant in the search engine. It's worth reading and it went over well!  :)

When my talk was over and we got back in the car, I turned my phone off vibrate and realized that I had 6 missed calls. I listened to the messages and became upset. Apparently many of my friends did try to come and were lost. The address that I had given them was one number off. How in the world could I have done that? Someone said " didn't you know it was the wrong address? " I guess that would have been true... if I lived here and knew the building and area, but I didn't so... I messed up and didn't even know it. I felt terrible and all I could do was say..." I am sorry" some how though, at times....that just doesn't seem like enough.

I realized what true friends they were to come out in that weather and continue looking and trying to find the right place. It reminded me of what is known as the Postal Service Oath or Motto..."Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds". Actually when I looked that up tonight I realized it that the U.S. Postal Service actually doesn't have an official slogan or oath, then it gave the information of why that saying got associated with them.  Another information that was wrong.

But sometimes, don't you wonder why certain things happen like they do?  Anyway, it is late. I hope my true friends that braved the elements tonight, will be blessed for their efforts and accept my humble apology. I am sorry, I missed them.

"The happiest business in all the world is that of making friends. And no investment on the street pays larger dividends. For life is more than stocks and bonds, and love than rate percent. And he who gives in friendship's name shall reap what he has."

"A great attitude does much more than turn on the lights in our worlds; it seems to magically connect us to all sorts of serendipitous opportunities that were somehow absent before the change."

"When you realize you've made a mistake, make amends immediately.  It's easier to eat crow while it's still warm."  ~Dan Heist

Ok, I think I have found a quote for all that good and bad that happened tonight!  Good night dear friends and thanks again!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Happy Belated Mother's Day

Yesterday was Mother's Day and it was a full and busy one for me. After a delicious homemade breakfast by Jeff and Lee, we headed off to church. Lee gave a wonderful talk about Mothers, I was grateful to see how much he has grown and thankful to hear some of the things he has learned in our home. As moms, many times we never know exactly if what we are doing and saying actually are sinking in. It was humbling to know how close he has been watching me and how I handled situations in my life.

After dinner we headed off to the airport. I flew out to SLC last night. I am going to have the opportunity to do  some motivational speaking plus...get  a chance to see my family and friends for nine days! This is a great Mother's Day gift! Thank you Jeff!

I am so grateful that I was blessed to be a MOM. I know that isn't a blessing that comes to everyone, and my heart aches for those who wanted to be one, but never had that privilege. I do hope that they have some comfort in knowing that as women we can mother and help teach and love so many of those around us. Those who are in our circle of friends or influence. You do make a difference. You are important. You are a woman with incredible potential. I am grateful for the many women in my life that have played such an important part in my life!

"The greatest battle that ever was fought -

Shall I tell you where and when?

On the maps of the world you will find it not:

It was fought by the mothers of men."  ~ Joakuin Miller

The Great Umbilical

"Motherly love is not much use if it expresses itself only as a warm gush of emotion, delicately tinged with pink. It must also be strong, guiding and unselfish. The sweetly sung lullaby; the cool hand on the fevered brow, the Mother's Day smiles and flowers are only a small part of the picture. True mothers have to be made of steel to withstand the difficulties that are sure to beset their children." ~ Rachel Billington

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Lessons from our Mothers!

This is too cute and absolutely true. Enjoy!

My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE:
"If you're going to kill each other, do it outside -- I just finished cleaning!"
My mother taught me RELIGION:
"You better pray that will come out of the carpet."
My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL:
"If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week!"
My mother taught me LOGIC:
"Because I said so, that's why!"
My mother taught me FORESIGHT:
"Be sure you wear clean underwear in case you're in an accident."
My mother taught me IRONY:
"Keep laughing and I'll give you something to cry about."
My mother taught me about OSMOSIS:
"Shut your mouth and eat your supper!"
My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM:
"Will you look at the dirt on the back of your neck!"
My mother taught me about STAMINA:
"You'll sit there 'til all that spinach is finished."
My mother taught me about WEATHER:
"It looks as if a tornado swept through your room."
My mother taught me how to solve PHYSICS PROBLEMS:
"If I yelled because I saw a meteor coming toward you, would you listen then?"
My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY:
"If I've told you once, I've told you a million times -- don't exaggerate!!!"
My mother taught me THE CIRCLE OF LIFE:
"I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."
My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION:
"Stop acting like your father!"
My mother taught me about ENVY:
"There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do!"

Thanks Mom

"The Mother's heart is the child's schoolroom"  ~ Henry Ward Beecher

Friday, May 7, 2010

Dreams

Some times I forget to DREAM! I get so caught up with the every day things of life that I forget there can be more...oh so much more. This poem hit the nail on the head for me. We all come with certain talents and abilities, we just need to discover and acknowledge them. ( Oh, and use them!)

It is late, just got home from my date night. Glad that I don't have a curfew! That's a bonus about being married! However if my mother was still alive, she probably would tell me that I need to be getting more sleep. Oh how I miss my mom and being mothered! :(

So read this poem and remember the talents you have, be grateful for them and remember to make the most of each situation in life! Remember there is always something to LEARN!  Good night dear friends!

ABILITY

Ability is to look at a blank page, and create a poem.

Ability is to stare into the eyes of fear, and come out stronger because of it.

Ability is to walk into a room of strangers, and come out with friends.

Ability is to admit you are wrong, when you are wrong.

Ability is to get back up, when you fall down.

Ability is to believe, when everything seems lost.

Ability ---a simple word, with a complex meaning. For many, ability is never found, but for all ability is within. Ability stares everyone in the face at one time or another. Whether your ability is how well you shoot hoops, how well you flip at dancing, how smart you are at school. You have ability. For some, ability is lost by never trying. Whether never trying to shoot one more time, never trying to bend a little more, or never trying to score higher in school.

Ability is within.

Ability is yours.             ~  Selina E. Matis (Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul III)

 

"Think BIG. There are unseen forces ready to support your dreams."  ~ Cheryl Richardson

"For success, attitude is equally as important as ability"  ~ Harry F. Banks

"Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it."  ~ Lou Holtz

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Teenagers!

Tonight as I sat here working on the computer, I could hear all the teenagers outside heading to the park that is near our home. We live in a pretty safe neighborhood, but it seems like when there is a holiday, weekend or school is out... then there is a free-for-all in the park. Many times that doesn't lead to anything good. I was wondering why they were out there on a school night and then I remembered that there is no school tomorrow. I quickly asked Jeff to make sure the cars were locked up because... you know how teenagers are!

I smiled as I said that, because we have one more teenager at home and actually we are quite fond of him. For a school dance this year, he and his date dressed up like Clark Kent ( Superman ) and Louis Lane. Here is the photo of him. When I looked at the photo again tonight, I remembered all the potential that these TEENAGERS really have. I found this story that backs up my thoughts.

Superman[1]

"I can't count how many times people have uttered, while shaking their heads in obvious disappointment, "I just don't know what is with teenagers today."

The other day I was in my car on my way to the farmers market with my friend Jan when we passed two teens standing by the side of the road with a car wash sign. My car was filthy  and my heart was full, so I pulled over. There were teenagers everywhere. There was a group directing the cars and another group spraying them down. As sponges were wiped over every square inch of my dirty car, I sat enjoying the little water battles and many silent scenarios that were so obviously taking place. I couldn't help but wonder how many crushes, how many new friendships and how many little insecurities were in the air on this beautiful Saturday afternoon. I was amazed at how forty to fifty teenagers had devoted their Saturday to washing cars, and I was curious what their motivation might be.

At the end of the assembly line I handed them a twenty-dollar bill and asked what they were raising money for. They explained to me that a friend of theirs, C. T. Schmitz, had recently died of cancer. He was only fifteen years old and six-feet-two. He had gone to school with a lot of the teenagers who were there that day and each of them had memories of a boy sweeter than any they had known. His friend Kevin had decided to put this car wash together because he wanted to honor his friend and also bring together his classmates with his boy scout troop. He told me that they wanted to plant a tree in front of their school and if they raised enough money they would put a plaque there also. Both would be in memory of their friend C. T.

They handed me a bag of homemade cookies with my receipt and we drove away. I asked Jan to read to me what the tag that was tied to the bag said. It said simply, " Thanks for helping us plant a tree for C. T."

Yeah! I don't know what is with teenagers today! (Kimberly Kirberger  Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II)

 

So may we look at our teenagers, and remember what incredible people they are and remind them of their limitless potential. I believe that is our job as their friends,teachers, leaders and family!

" FAMILY...A GROUP EXPERIENCE OF LOVE AND SUPPORT."  ~ Marianne Williamson

 

"Your children need your presence more than your presents."  ~Jesse Jackson


"It's not only children who grow.  Parents do too.  As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours.  I can't tell my children to reach for the sun.  All I can do is reach for it, myself."  ~Joyce Maynard

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Light bulb moment

Tonight Jeff and I went to a wedding, and while there we saw many friends that we hadn't seen in a long time. I love weddings, I love the reminder it is to me ...to cherish being married to my best friend. Marriage is by far one of the hardest thing I have ever done. It is something that you constantly have to work at. But how grateful I am for Jeff and I's 27 year marriage.

I had a light bulb moment tonight. There were a few people talking and the conversation turned to one of the ladies' sister, who recently had a car accident. As she talked about her sister's injuries, she also mentioned that the person who hit her was on texting on cell phone. She was so sad and upset and kept wondering what could be so important that the person couldn't wait till she got off the road?  That is when my light bulb moment happened. I have never texted, but I have answered the phone and put it promptly in my hands free holder. It just hit me that even though I don't text, I still make a calls or answer a call while driving some times. I wondered how I would have felt had that been me that hit her sister? How could I explain the urgency in any phone call, that would have result in my lack of safety and actually end up hurting someone else?

I am not condemning anyone else, but it did do a number on my conscience. Lee like I mentioned before, is going through Driver's Ed training and he has mentioned on more than one occasion, some of the dangers of being on the phone or anything else while driving. I realized I need to be a better example for him and all my kids. I should have had this light bulb moment years ago. I have set some bad habits and then in turn... been a bad example for my kids. Tonight I was really sorry for that, and decided that nothing was so important that I couldn't wait till I got home or stopped the car. I counted my blessings too, that I hadn't had any accidents and then made my promise to Lee and to myself that I was going to change...starting tonight. Why is it, that some things take us so long to learn?  Well, I need to head to bed. Good night dear friends and remember to drive carefully out there!

"Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead."  ~Mac McCleary

"Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly."  ~Author Unknown

"Leave sooner, drive slower, live longer."  ~Author Unknown

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mothers and Teachers

It's almost Mother's Day, and I have been thinking what some of the most important things that I have learned since being a Mother. I found this sweet story about a teacher... and in many ways, I believe a Mother's role in a child's life should be a lot the same.

I had a great feeling of relief when I began to understand that a youngster needs more than just subject matter. I know mathematics well, and I teach it well. I used to think that was all I needed to do. Now I teach children, not math. I accept the fact that I can only succeed partially with some of them. When I don't  have to know all the answers, I seem to have more answers than when I tried to be the expert. The youngster who really made me understand this was Eddie. I asked him one day why he thought he was doing so much better than last year. He gave meaning to my whole new orientation. "It's because I like myself now when I'm with  you." he said. ( A teacher quoted by Everett Shostrom in Man, The Manipulator)

Don't you agree, when we help our children or any children truly understand their self worth, their whole world seems to light up?  So to all you new moms out there, remember to teach your children of their true value and worth. Knowing that they are a child of God, of infinite potential... will be one of the greatest gifts you can ever give them. We should also check and see if our children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and little friends, seem to like themselves better when they are with us? If the answer is YES, then we are doing our job

Good night dear friends and thanks for making me feel better about myself, when I am with you!

"Once you see a child's self-image begin to improve, you will see significant gains in achievement areas, but even more important, you will see a child who is beginning to enjoy life more."  ~Wayne Dyer

"A child educated only at school is an uneducated child." ~ George Santayana

Monday, May 3, 2010

Real Hero

I loved this story in our local newspaper the other day about a local boy with cancer gets to be a superhero for a day. It was also on the TV today, introducing him and his parents. It touched my heart. I will only include a brief part of it, but if you have the time...you really should read it. The reporter's name and email are just below. I am sure that I am partial to it because one... I love children, two...I am a cancer survivor myself, so I truly understand what a toll it takes on the whole family. How grateful I am that there are so many good people in the world, who were willing to make this young boy's dream come true.

Erik Martin, who is living with liver cancer, has always wanted to be a superhero. On Thursday, the regional chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation granted him that wish with an elaborate event that involved hundreds of volunteers in Bellevue and Seattle.

By Katherine Long  klong@seattletimes.com

Seattle Times Eastside reporter

The Make-A-Wish Foundation made 13-year-old Erik Martin's dream of becoming a superhero come true.

Dean Rutz  Seattle Times

The Make-A-Wish Foundation made 13-year-old Erik Martin's dream of becoming a superhero come true.

Electron Boy lances Blackout Boy (Jake Anderson) before turning on Dr. Dark (Edgar Hansen) in the battle between good and evil at the Space Needle. Erik Martin's dream of becoming a superhero came true Thursday. At left is Lightning Lad, played by actor Rob Burgess.

A crowd of better than 200 gather outside Puget Sound Energy in Bellevue to cheer on Electron Boy as he saves a stranded worker in a bucket truck on Thursday.

DEAN RUTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES

A crowd of better than 200 gather outside Puget Sound Energy in Bellevue to cheer on Electron Boy as he saves a stranded worker in a bucket truck on Thursday.

School day for 13-year-old Erik Martin, but then something extraordinary happened: Spider-Man called.

Spider-Man happens to be one of the few people who knows that Erik, too, has a secret identity — he's Electron Boy, a superhero who fights the powers of evil with light.

And Spider-Man needed Erik's help.

Erik, who is living with liver cancer, has always wanted to be a superhero. On Thursday, the regional chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation granted him that wish with an elaborate event that involved hundreds of volunteers in Bellevue and Seattle.

The local chapter, which serves four states, grants more than 300 wishes every year to children with life-threatening medical conditions, but only a few of them involve so many participants.

Seattle City Councilwoman Sally Bagshaw stepped forward with a key to the city and a proclamation that Thursday was Electron Boy Day. Afterward, Erik posed for the TV cameras, flexed his muscles and spent some time astride a Bellevue police motorcycle.

"He's over the moon," said Foote. "This is definitely beyond anything we thought it would be."

Watching her son run across the plaza in front of the Space Needle, mom Judy Martin said Erik goes to school when he's able, but is often too tired. "He hasn't had this much energy in a long time," she said. "They called it the power of the wish, and they're right."

Like any good superhero, Electron Boy kept his innermost thoughts to himself. But he did have one important thing to say:

"This is the best day of my life."

May we all really stop and count our blessings each day!

"WE HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO DREAM HEROIC DREAMS. THOSE WHO SAY THAT WE'RE IN A TIME WHEN THERE ARE NO HEROES, THEY JUST DON'T KNOW WHERE TO LOOK." ~Ronald Reagan

" NURTURE YOUR MIND WITH GREAT THOUGHTS; TO BELIEVE IN THE HEROIC MAKES HEROES" ~ Benjamin Disraeli

 

 

 

Sunday, May 2, 2010

What steals our time?

It seems like if I am not careful, I spend my time doing things that are not necessarily important. I heard a quote the other day that went like this...

"A WISE MAN ONCE DISTINGUISHED BETWEEN 'THE NOBLE ART OF GETTING THINGS DONE' AND 'A NOBLER ART OF LEAVING THINSG UNDONE.' TRUE 'WISDOM IN LIFE,' HE TAUGHT, CONSISTS OF 'THE ELIMINATION OF NON-ESSENTIALS.'  ~Dieter F. Uchtdorf

So it is a daily question that I have to ask my self " What non-essentials steal my time? Am I truly doing what matters most?  As Mother's Day quickly approaches I ask myself this question a lot. Am I really focusing on being the type of Mom and Nana that I want to be? That my kids and grand-kids need me to be?  I also have to ask myself this question a lot... 'In the grand scheme of things, will what I am doing right now even matter?' 

For now I am trying to enjoy this different season my family is going through, and that I am going through as a Mom. This ALMOST EMPTY NESTERS thing is still very new to me, and I am trying to understand it and learn how to live with it, but it isn't easy. I pray that this week that we will take inventory of our life and what non-essentials are stealing our TIME. Once we figure that out, may we then have the courage and the strength to change it. The essentials in life, many times are the small and simple things!  Good night dear friends.

 

"A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts."
-- Washington Irving

"A mother understands what a child does not say."  ~ Jewish proverb

"You know your children are growing up when they stop asking you where they came from and refuse to tell you where they're going."  ~ P. J. O'Rourke

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Why me?

Have you ever asked yourself that question? More importantly did you ever get an answer, one that was fair and made a whole lot of sense? I know that we all once or twice have asked ourselves that question. We sometimes may even feel that it is bad luck, and that we are cursed ...with either bad luck or no luck at all. Opposition happens to every one. When I was looking up inspirational article I found this one about Opposition, and loved it so much that I thought I would share it with you tonight.

Cripple him and you have a Sir Walter Scott.
Lock him in a prison cell and you have a John Bunyon.
Bury him in the snows of Valley Forge, and you have a George Washington.
Raise him in poverty and you have an Abraham Lincoln.
Subject him to bitter religious strife, and you have a Franklin Delanore Roosevelt, the only U.S. president to serve four terms in office.
Burn him so severely in a school house fire that doctors say he will never walk again and you have a Glenn Cunningham, who set the world record in 1934 for running the mile in 4 minutes and 6.7 seconds.
Deafen a genius composer and you have a Ludwig van Beethoven.
Drag him more dead than alive from a rice paddy, and you have a Rocky Blyer, running back for the great 1970 decade Pittsburgh Steelers.
Have them born into a society filled with racial prejudice and hatred, and you have a Booker T. Washington, Harriet Tubman, or Martin Luther King, Jr.
Have him born into a Nazi concentration camp, paralyze him from the waist down at the age of four, and you have an Eastman Pearlman, the incomparable pianist.
Call him retarded and write him off as uneducated, and you have an Albert Einstein.
Amputate the cancer-ridden leg of a young Canadian, and you have a Terry Fox, who ran halfway across Canada on artificial legs.
Take both legs away from him and you have a Douglas Bater, an RAF fighter pilot who was captured three times by the Germans and who escaped three times on artificial limbs.
Label him too stupid to learn and you have a Thomas Edison.
Blind him at the age of 44, and you have a John Milton, who 16 years later wrote the great novel, "Paradise Lost."
Call him dull, hopeless, and flunk him out of school in the sixth grade, and you have the famous statesman Winston Churchill.
Tell a boy who loves to draw that he has no talent, and you have a Walt Disney.
Take a man who did nothing wrong to anyone, and spit on Him, mock Him, humiliate Him, be His trusted friend and then completely turn your back on Him, accept His loving kindness and service for years and then crucify Him, and after all this, have Him still forgive you, and you will have a Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ.

"You can measure a man by the opposition it takes to discourage him."  ~ Robert C. Savage

"Success is not measured by what you accomplish, but by the opposition you have encountered, and the courage with which you have maintained the struggle against overwhelming odd."  ~ Orison Swett Marden

 

"Don't be afraid of opposition. Remember, a kite rises against; not with; the wind."  ~ Hamilton Mabie