I STILL BELIEVE AS I GRIEVE

TL I STILL BELIEVE AS I GRIEVE (2)

What was happening in America on Saturday, September 18, 1909???

The largest crowd to ever watch a baseball game, up to that time, turned out in Shibe Park as 35,409 spectators watched the Philadelphia Athletics beat the visiting Detroit Tigers, 2–0, on the pitching of future Hall of Famer Charles “Chief” Bender. The A’s were second to the Tigers in the American League pennant race.

IMG_1056
SEPTEMBER 18, 1909

Guess what else happened???  My Grandpa married my Granny!  I don’t have wedding photos – I’m not even sure there are any – this plate is my precious possession to remind me of my Grandpa Frank & Granny LaVella’s wedding day.  Mama told me that it was hand painted by a family friend and neighbor.  It’s not valuable – but it sure means a lot to me.  Granny kept this plate hanging in their bedroom on the farm.

People really do get married at an older age these days.  These two crazy kids were married at 16 years of age!  I think they were married at a judge’s house, if I remember the story correctly.

They had a piece of farmland willed to them, built a little house on it and started growing wheat, horses, cattle and children – by the time it was said and done – EIGHT kids!

Grandpa Frank also drove a truck to supplement their income.  Granny did some sewing and took in washing to help out.  They didn’t have to buy stainless for the kitchen or even entertain the notion of indoor plumbing…  but they were two of the happiest people ever!  They had the same beliefs and the same dreams for their family.  They embraced faith in God above all and were faithful to each other until the end.

I get to thinking about that sometimes.  In their life, they were so firmly rooted in family and values, the fancy stuff wasn’t important.  I loved everything about staying at the farmhouse when I was little because something as simple as snuggling down in one of Granny’s quilts meant more to me than anything fancy and showy.  That squeaky bed was the best, and using homemade soap every morning and eating farm fresh eggs…  well those are memories that will never fade from my memory!

You have to have a dream so you can get up in the morning.  – Billy Wilder

In our day, it seems like we place so much importance on possessing the best of things and less emphasis on growing a strong family.  In the end, what difference does it make if we have a hardwood floor or linoleum?  I wouldn’t want to have an outhouse…  let’s not get nuts!

I miss that farm in Oklahoma…  I felt so safe and secure there in that squeaky bed with Granny’s quilt tucked around me.  It gives me such comfort to know that Grandpa, Granny, mom and dad are in heaven waiting for me.

Happy Anniversary in heaven, Grandpa & Granny!!!

They are with Jesus, and one day I’ll join them.  Maybe I could have that squeaky bed and one of Granny’s quilts in my mansion.  I may not need it since there is no night there and I won’t get tired.  Hmm…  I have to re-think that, don’t I?  Wink!  😉

 

 

I WILL MISS YOU…

TL I WILL MISS YOU

WELL PLAYED AND PLAYED WELL

https://youtu.be/_12oEdy6-2Y

MV5BMTc1MTg1ODg4NV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMzk3NjMyNA@@._V1_UY317_CR4,0,214,317_AL_

On September 6, we all lost a good friend.  Martin Milner was 83 years old.  Whether you recognize the name or not, his face is surely familiar.

He began acting at a very young age, in the 1947 film “Life with Father” in the role of John Day, the second oldest son of Clarence Day.   My husband and I still watch that film from time to time.  John Day was an ambitious child who was interested in making money by selling “medicine” to friends.  His wide-eyed innocence and the excitement in his voice makes you want to buy a bottle of it!  When his father (played by William Powell) finds out he’s been selling the medicine, he tells John that he will not get his allowance until all of the medicine has bought back – John obviously does some math in his mind and declares, “But I’ll be 21 years old!”  It’s a very cute movie and I highly recommend it.

Life_with_Father_-_Film_Poster
John Day is seated at the far left hand side

Route 66 aired on CBS from 1960-64.  Clean-cut Yale graduate Tod Stiles and his working-class buddy Buz Murdock (played by George Maharis) traveled all over the country in Tod’s Corette convertible getting their kicks.

MV5BMTU2MTExODk4NV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMDY5NTI1MQ@@._V1_SY317_CR9,0,214,317_AL_

The role I remember best is that of “Pete Malloy” in the hit series “Adam 12” (1968).  Pete was a veteran of the Los Angeles Police Department assisted by rookie cop Jim Reed, who was played by Kent McCord.

MV5BMTI4NTI4MjQxM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMDIyOTM1Mw@@._V1_SX214_AL_

We didn’t see much of Martin Milner then for a while.  He played in my favorite TV series “Murder, She Wrote” from time to time.  He played the role of “Lt. Clint Phelps”, who served in the USAF with Jessica’s husband, Frank Fletcher.

Of course, he played in many familiar movies as well, from westerns to city streets, he nailed every role he was challenged with playing.

I appreciate Martin Milner’s standards as an actor.  He didn’t use his fame to push an agenda.  He didn’t take a role that would damage his integrity or character.  He seemed like the sort of guy you could just sit down and have a cup of coffee with, didn’t he?

Here’s a list of all the great performances of Martin Milner:

http://www.oocities.org/martin_milner/filmography.html

I will miss Martin Milner.  Aren’t we thankful we can re-visit those great performances on DVD? 🙂

 

 

 

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

TL ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY (13)

12006339_10153213499379091_8370892553398318399_n
God gave NY a rainbow… brings tears to my eyes!

I asked the great folks in my group, A Second Helping of Wellness… with a Dash of Humor & a Pinch of Faith, if they would be willing to share some of their thoughts about September 11, 2001.  Here are their responses:

I remember being scared, sad ,and confused. All I wanted to do was find out more information about what happened. It was surreal, and I took a long time to really come to terms with it. We visited NYC the following October and the mood was so somber . There was a complete sense of loss. I hope and pray that nothing like that happens to us again. 

  • John

I remember watching the TV and being so scared because it was not known how many more planes were involved and where the planes were headed. It was surreal and I know that all the military bases were on high alert.

  • Diane

I was driving when the news came on the car radio stating that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center ~ My first thought was terrorists ~ I went home and put the news on t.v. and witnessed the second plane crash into the second Tower ~ I called Jim who was visiting his mother’s grave and told him to get home asap ~ We watched on TV as the horror unfolded ~ The Towers crashing down ~ People dying, bleeding, etc. ~ The rest of the day was spent crying, not knowing. . .I lost two cousins and some former co-workers.

  • Ally

I was in Tucson, Arizona at the time attending school. I woke up and turned on the TV to watch the news as I got ready for school. I thought I was watching a movie as both of the twin towers where begin showed. Later on there was a bomb threat at the school I was attending. We cleared the building while the police and their dogs searched. In the meantime my class was sitting in the parking lot taking a test.

  • Joanna

And Lucinda reminds us of the Todd Beamer story.  Disclaimer:  grab a box of Kleenex.

https://youtu.be/IP5dUz8nyYE

And the beautiful song by DC Talk.

https://youtu.be/0Sxqkbz6T4g

WE WILL NEVER FORGET!!!

Americans are resilient in the face of tragedy.  We mourn to be sure, but then we take the worst situations and replace them with symbols of hope for the future.  We need to honor those we lost by finding a way to move ahead.  On November 3, 2014, One World Trade Center, also known as The Freedom Tower, opened!

250px-OneWorldTradeCenter
Restored beauty – because America is resilient.

 

It’s no coincidence that the building stands at 1,776 feet.  It is a deliberate reference to the year the U.S. Declaration of Independence was signed.  May we look at this building and remember, but also gain strength and hope for the future.  Let’s pray for the future of America.

https://youtu.be/mJQojxeIhYw

May God bless the U.S.A.  🙂

 

 

 

 

 

FATHER’S DAY

TL 6-21 FATHER'S DAY

https://youtu.be/TSvGost2P5g

Our Heavenly Father,

Please bless all the fathers in the world.  Guide them to be good role models and loving to all their children.  Help them to be a father like You are.  Give them grace and patience to handle situations in a loving way.

In Jesus’ Name,  Amen.

We glean so much from our earthly fathers, don’t we?  As children we watch their mannerisms and pick up on the habits and traits they hold dear – and sometimes make them our own.

My dad had a very rigid work schedule.  He was the boss and had to be a shining example of punctuality.  I remember every morning before he left the house, he would say…  WATCH, WALLET, GLASSES.  Those were the 3 things he wanted to make sure he took with him!  Now that I’m – um…  shall we say, more mature…  guess what I do???

Before I leave the house, I say, WATCH, PURSE, GLASSES.  I hear you laughing at me…  quit it.  LOL!

Children are watching and taking mental notes.  Don’t ever think they are not paying attention.  When God gives you the privilege of becoming a parent, it comes with so much responsibility.  It’s wrapped up in love and joy – but ultimately it’s a lot of responsibility.

Blessed indeed is the man who hears many gentle voices call him father!  – Lydia M. Child

What a blessing when there is plenty of support from family and friends because it really does take a village to raise a child in this day and age.  Raising a child to love the Lord and learn His ways is the goal of Christian parents.  Our Heavenly Father gives us the wisdom and insight to navigate through life as our earthly father teaches us life lessons as we grow up.

We may not shower him with praise nor mention his name in song, and sometimes it seems that we forget the joy he spreads as he goes along, but it doesn’t mean that we don’t know the wonderful role that he has had.  And away down deep in every heart there’s a place that is just for dad.  – Unknown

As children grow, we see not only physical maturity, but spiritual maturity too.  Between the lessons learned from their earthly father and Heavenly Father, a great balance is seen.  It’s what makes us smile and thank God for His influence in their lives.  We begin with the simple message…  Yes, Jesus loves me…  the Bible tells me so!  We pray they accept His love and make a decision to love Him back and honor Him with their lives.

Lucinda and I had such fun writing this poem about the influence our earthly fathers had on us and the awesome influence our Heavenly Father continues to have on us.

FATHER'S DAY - LESSONS OF SURVIVAL AND WISDOM

Have a wonderful Father’s Day!  🙂

 

BUTTERFLY AWARENESS DAY

TL 6-7 BUTTERFLY AWARENESS DAY

6-7 THE RIVER OF JORDAN

On a September afternoon long ago, I was made aware of butterflies.  I knew that God sent miracles on request because He loves us.  Today is BUTTERFLY AWARENESS DAY!!!  Thank You, God, for butterflies and the joy they bring.

In those moments where I’ve thought, ‘I need a sign,’ a butterfly appears, whether it’s a real one, an image on a T-shirt or a tattoo on a waiter’s neck.  – Roma Downey

I spent a week with my mom in the hospital.  On high doses of morphine for pain, she was blissfully unaware of anything, sleeping.  I sat and thought, “This is it.  I have to say goodbye now.”  I put Vaseline on her lips once in a while and tried to focus on a book.  I think I read each page about ten times.  I couldn’t think about what I was reading.  My mama was dying, and my life was about to change in so many ways.

Prayer:  The world’s greatest wireless connection.  – @JesusGraces on Twitter

You know, those phone calls you get at 3 am?  Those phone calls are never the Publisher’s Clearing House letting you know you won.  They are never good news.  No – and if someone passes in the night, what good does it really do to wake the family while they are sleeping and fortunately unaware of what has transpired?  Can this news not wait until the next morning?  At any rate, the phone call came.  My mother went home.

Her home going celebration was simple, as she wanted.  She was never one for fancy doings.  I knew what to do because she told me many times.  What dress she wanted to be buried in and what kind of flowers to order.  It was as if I was just carrying out the orders she’d given me.  I did it without much effort because I was so numb.  I tried not to think about the fact that I’d never get to have a talk over tea with her again on this earth.  I couldn’t think about that.  There would be time to grieve later.  Right now – details.  I have to attend to the details.  It must be right.  I had to make her proud.

At the viewing, friends and family were kind.  I just kept thinking I wanted to jump in that casket with her.  Dive right in there and go with her.  They frown on that though – turns out those caskets are made for one.  They don’t do twofer funerals.  So I moved on to plan B.  Wait…  what was plan B?  Oh…  well – prayer.  I prayed.  I prayed for a sign.

Dear God,

I am so sad today.  Would you mind just sending me a small sign to let me know that You are here and that you still love me – and that mama’s ok?  Thank You!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

God answered that little prayer.  I looked up from praying and saw some turquoise blue butterflies right around the bouquet of turquoise blue hydrangeas I arranged in a large vase beside the casket.  I’ve never seen turquoise blue butterflies in Kansas before – and I have not seen them since that day.  It’s my very special sign from God that everything is alright – with me – and with my mom.

butterfly-492536

Oh – did I mention that the dress my mom wanted to be buried in was a turquoise blue dress?  Did I also mention that turquoise blue was her favorite color?  And – all of my family and friends honored that sweet woman by wearing turquoise blue to her graveside service.  Yes – God made sure those butterflies were the perfect color.  Don’t even try to persuade me that there is no God – and that He does not care deeply for His children.  I know better.  🙂

 

 

INTERNATIONAL BEREAVED MOTHER’S DAY

TL BEREAVED MOTHER'S DAY

So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days and seven nights, and none spake a word unto him: for they saw that his grief was very great.  – Job 2:13

This day was created in 2010 and it now falls on the first Sunday of May.  The movement is meant to honor the memory of children called to heaven.  It’s also a support of sorts for grieving mothers.  It’s one thing to have tragedy strike and lose a child, but it’s another to feel alone in your grief.

Parental grief is intense, long-lasting, and complex. The grief and the healing process contain similar elements for all bereaved parents.  Finding others in similar situations will help you move forward, but don’t let anyone rush you through the healing process.

You’re not alone.  If you think you are, click on the You Tube video, the Carly Marie Project Heal website, the facebook event page or the blog on BlogSpot.com.  I invite you to connect with any of these folks because the worst thing you can do is grieve alone.  Grieving with others online is really unique in that you can say as much as you want to – and back away and be alone when you need to be alone.  The support is there for you when you need it.

https://youtu.be/1YdYS2bDjcI

http://carlymarieprojectheal.com/2012/05/international-bereaved-mothers-day.html

https://www.facebook.com/events/662766127106038/

http://internationalbabylostmothersday.blogspot.com/

I believe there is a special place in God’s heart reserved for those who have dealt with the loss of a child, or childlessness for any reason.  If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard someone say that it’s not natural for a parent to outlive their child, well – let’s just say I’d be wealthy.

Although we know in our minds that Mother’s Day is the day to show honor and respect for our own mother, I know it’s still a very difficult time for the childless.  Some years I can’t go to church on Mother’s Day.  Those who love me understand.  Those who don’t – well, I guess they don’t understand.

BLESS ME IN THIS PLACE

Take a moment to say a prayer for the childless, particularly the ones who lost children in death and are left here to search for purpose and meaning in life.

May God Himself bless you with comfort for your soul as only He can. 

 

 

WORLD WISH DAY

TL 4-29 WORLD WISH DAY

This event is a celebration in memory of Chris, the child who sparked a global wish-granting movement and the beginning of Make-A-Wish.

chris
Christopher smiling in his official policeman’s uniform.

He was only seven years, 269 days old when he died. But he taught me about being a man. Even though he was only a boy. I can tell you that because of meeting Chris, I am an entirely different man. Ron Cox said the same thing. He said he didn’t fear death anymore, because he knew Chris would be there waiting for him.   – Tommy Austin, Make-A-Wish® co-founder and retired U.S. Customs agent

When a child has a terminal illness it makes adults feel so helpless.  We all want to do anything we can to make it better.  When Chris let it be known he wished he could be an officer, it seemed like something that could happen for him – something the adults could make happen.  To see the smile on his face made the effort worth while to be sure.

It breaks our hearts to know children are so sick and likely won’t get to make their dreams come true as an adult.  What a wonderful idea to help them make a wish come true.  We naturally want to do anything we can to help them.

That is what the Make-A-Wish foundation is all about – making wishes come true for children with terminal illness.  These brave children deserve to have a wish come true because they face so many days filled with pain.

Make-A-Wish granted 14,000 wishes last year alone – on average, one every 38 minutes. But for every wish granted, another child is diagnosed with a potentially qualifying condition. A child who needs a wish.

We all look forward to the day when no more children have life-threatening medical conditions. Until that time, Make-A-Wish remains committed to granting a wish to every eligible child. Because wishes make very sick kids feel better – and sometimes, when they feel better, they get better.

It’s been more than 30 years since my son Chris received his wish, and I am still amazed and inspired how one little boy’s dream to be a police officer has touched the lives of so many thousands of people.  – Linda Pauling, mom of Chris

I’m so thankful there is an organization that can make wishes come true for brave boys and girls.  Some want to have a certain animal, or be on a TV show.  One little girl got to be a cartoon character – do the voice-over on her favorite cartoon show!  Some want to play an instrument or play a certain sport.  Some want to be a character in a play or go to a certain place.  Riding in a hot air balloon might be the wish of a child.

Let’s pray for the little ones who need some wishes to come true.  WORLD MAKE A WISH DAY let’s make some wishes come true for these kids.  🙂