A Day Off

My Germany family left the house @ 5:30 this morning. We said our goodbyes last night, as I didn’t think I could handle being up that early after being up rather late. We had some friends here last night that Mike hadn’t seen in many years, and we had SUCH a good time!

So–I’m asking your indulgence today. I’m just purely worn out. I plan to do nothing whatsoever today. I may even go back to bed. I was vaguely aware of their leaving this morning, but forced myself to go back to sleep. It was not much of a struggle 🙂

I should be back on track tomorrow, and I am looking forward to the next passage in John 10. It’s beautiful. I’m going to enjoy digging into it.

See you then!

A Break

The house is quiet. South Dakota left for home around 9 a.m. Germany is on the way to visit friends and relatives for a week or so. The three of them will be back for an overnight or two on Friday, then they, too, will head for home.

I am worn out–not because I had to work too hard. Our adult children helped out with the cooking and grocery shopping. They all pitched in on the clean up. I think I’m tired mainly from just the hustle and bustle that goes with having 11 people in a small house. Also, staying up later than normal, laughing a lot, enjoying listening to the young adults when they adjourn to another room to play games, and keeping up with many conversations all at the same time.

Yesterday, I did my own grocery run. As I was leaving the parking lot to come home, a woman whose nose was glued to her cell phone turned left across my lane, swung wide, and was aimed directly at my driver-side door. I don’t think she had any idea I was there. Quick reaction on my part, and I ended up shredding the right front tire on a pointy curbing. The Cell Phone Queen blared her horn and gave me the one-finger salute as she went right on by. Unbelievable. Within just a few minutes, my dashboard signaled that I had a very low tire. No kidding. Shredded FLAT! Terry says the rim seems okay, but boy, did I hate having to make the call to him. He has enough projects without my adding to his list.

Should Cell Phone Makers Be Liable in Distracted Driving Cases ...
One of these days, you’re going to hurt someone because you just can’t put your phone down!

Here’s a website you should read if you think you’re bullet-proof:

https://www.edgarsnyder.com/car-accident/cause-of-accident/cell-phone/cell-phone-statistics.html

As a result of that driver’s carelessness, we’ll be without our car for at least a week before Terry finds a wheel and mounts it. And SHE was mad at ME!

Okay, enough of that. It could have been a lot worse, and I’m thankful to not be in a hospital right now.

We’ve had a wonderful time. The cousins all enjoyed each other’s company. They don’t get together very often. The three boys who were here range from 17 to nearly 21, full of beans and lots of fun. Ivan’s girlfriend is a delightful young lady, and of course Alayna is a very grown-up 14.

I just went and put a load of laundry in the machine, and I think I’m going to go lie down on my wonderful adjustable bed and use the massage function.

'Push remote to return to flat position.'

All’s quiet on the eastern front 🙂

Family

I thought it was time for me to pop in again for a short post. We have nine people in and out of the house, besides ourselves, so things are just a little hectic. It’s wonderful :). I’m enjoying three of my very tall grandsons, all close to the same age, who are having a great time getting reacquainted. One granddaughter is here, along with a girlfriend of her brother’s. The Germany contingent of three is staying with some extremely kind friends right now, while the South Dakota delegation occupies the basement. South Dakota will leave on Saturday, and Germany will return. However, Germany will be making day trips to visit friends and relatives, so our population will be quickly reduced!

Outstanding in the Field 2020 tour: Fat Rice, Parachute chefs involved -  Chicago Tribune
This is not us, although it COULD be 🙂

Yesterday, seven of them went to Six Flags in New Jersey, and also did a quick trip to the shore for the sake of the girlfriend of a grandson. She’d never seen an ocean, and was very excited to be close enough to dip her toes into the Atlantic 🙂

I remember feeling like that when I was ten, and we moved from Minnesota to Oregon. I was thrilled to pieces to see the Pacific. What surprised me was my classmates there who thought it was so awesome that I had actually seen the Mississippi River, which was like a fable to them.

Anyway, we’re having a wonderful visit. My two oldest sons and their families are keeping us laughing, and helping out with some chores here that Terry just can’t handle on his own any more.

Never take your family for granted. We’ve enjoyed every stage of our 51 years of marriage, but I think this may be my favorite time, apart from the physical debility that begins with aging. Our kids are all forty and above; our grands are growing into fine young adults. I hope we live long enough to enjoy the first one or two. . .or more. . . great-grands. Who knows?

Last night, Mike and Ken and Terry and I drove out to the OWOWCOW ice cream shop in Ottsville, and I enjoyed a dish of honey lavender ice cream. Absolutely delicious. Terry says my love of lavender has become an obsession.

Well, there are worse things with which to be obsessed 🙂

Catching Up

Hey, everyone! I haven’t posted since July 7 or 8. The first wave of family got in on the 7th; the rest will be coming tomorrow. We’ve spent hours just catching up and reminiscing, and we’ve laughed a lot. Eaten well. Rested. It’s great.

The next batch will be six people, so the first three family members are going to stay with friends for a week while the South Dakota crew stays with us for a week.

Free Visit Cliparts, Download Free Clip Art, Free Clip Art on Clipart  Library
There are no little ones these days, but this was very much the way it was just a few short years ago.

In the meantime, there just hasn’t been any uninterrupted time for me to do my normal daily Bible study post. It’s gratifying to me that even though I haven’t posted since Monday, my stats are holding up well. I have eight years’ worth of Bible study material on this blog, and apparently there’s enough there to keep people coming back. That’s very cool.

My Number One post, since I first wrote it several years ago, is still King David and Depression. It’s almost always at the top of the ten most-viewed posts. That tells me I could probably write a lot more on depression, and maybe I will. When I first started this blog, I created Friday Counseling Issues, in which I wrote about many of the things I learned about during my years as a therapist. You can find just about anything along those lines on the right side of the page, under Counseling Issues.

All right. I just had a few minutes of relative calm, and decided to use it this way. Wanted you to know I’m still alive and well, and will be back to my normal routine by the first of August.

I pray you are all having an enjoyable summer, in spite of THE VIRUS.

Don’t live in fear. Isaiah 41:10. “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”

Just Dropping In

Writing a daily post has become such a habit that I can hardly let the day go by without letting you know I’m still alive and well 🙂

I’ve been having a medical treatment every week for the past 11 weeks, and the last one will be next Thursday. I’m responding very well, am so glad to have found a doctor who has some new approaches. Anyway, the timing just messes up my schedule on Thursdays.

In about 20 minutes, I’ll be teaching my final history class, via Zoom, for my homeschool co-op group. So thankful for this technology!

So that’s it. I’ll see you tomorrow, as usual.

It’s a gorgeous spring day here in my corner of PA!

30 Inspirational Spring Quotes - Quotes for Welcoming Spring

Sunday Morning Coffee: A New Project

Finally, after all the years of thinking about it, putting it off, talking myself out of it—-finally, I’m writing. Seriously writing. Not just a blog post here and there

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Not that anyone is watching over my shoulder while I write 🙂 I just thought this was funny.

There is a challenge I’ve been considering for some time. It’s called National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and it started Nov. 1 and ends on Nov. 30. The goal is to write 50,000 words by Nov. 30. Today I hit 20,000, which puts me about a week ahead of the required 1667 words per day to meet the mark.

The organization has been around for some time, I guess. Lots of people participate. Who knew how many hundreds of wannabe writers are out there! You can get involved in the community, have buddies and attend write-ins, etc. But I think I’m a loner when it comes to this. I know I’ll have to let others, like editors, have what I’ve written, but the idea of that makes my stomach hurt. Which is one of the things that’s kept me from trying.

I don’t deal well with rejection.

So there it is, out in cyberspace. The word is that we need to make a grand announcement in order to keep our commitment up and running. I hope so.

You know, I just started blogging on this site through the Book of John. Already, I’m seeing the beginning of the constant rejection Jesus experienced in His 33 years on this earth. “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not,” for instance.

And I’ve been thinking, if I had lived then, a Jewish girl in Israel, what would I have thought? My nature being what it is, I’d have been curious but skeptical. I’d like to think I would have known right away that He was God’s Son, but maybe not.

Jesus didn’t let rejection stop Him, though; while just the fear of rejection stopped me for so long. Of course, the salvation of mankind is not dependent upon what I write 🙂 It’s a good thing!

The gospel of John is an amazing, wonderful book. I invite you to join me! I’m still in Chapter One, loving the verse-by-verse study of the book that presents Jesus as the Son of God. It’s a story that never grows old.

Free Friday

I would usually do a post on Ecclesiastes today, but I’m just not in the mood. Not a good excuse, I know. I always get into the mood once I start writing, but today I’m deliberately taking a break.

I had to go in for a couple of routine medical tests early this morning–fasting blood work was one of the tests. Then I hit the Walmart for a few groceries, and now I’m back home, all by myself for the entire day. I love it.

Terry’s down at church mowing. It’s a large property, and it takes him all day. So I have several hours rolling out in front of me with nothing planned, nothing pressing, nothing I HAVE to do. That’s really cool 🙂

At the doctor’s office, the secretary was checking my info and asked if I’m still working at the counseling office. I said, “No! I retired this week!” and the other women in the office all turned and offered me congrats and well wishes.

I’m a Baby Boomer, after all. Most places I checked agreed that the Boomer years range from 1946 to 1964. I was born in 1947. Retirement often happens between 60 and 65, but more and more people are working into their 80s. Sometimes, it’s just because they love their work. I did. I’d still be working if I were physically able to do so.

Image result for retirement cartoons

I’m beginning to get a little glimpse of what a big deal this really is. People work all their lives hoping to be able to retire. Sometimes it just doesn’t work out, for a variety of reasons. I retired because of my health. It’s hard to focus on people when you’re hurting, and I knew I was losing concentration. I was also missing days at a time because I just couldn’t physically endure the hours of sitting. In any case, it’s a major life change that is slowly beginning to sink in.

But it doesn’t mean I’m going to do nothing. My calendar is already filling up with one thing and another. I’m taking this next week off completely, but after that I have some responsibilities that will require me to study, plan, and prepare. One big thing is that I’m going to carve out the time, every day, to work on a book I’ve had in my head for way too long.

But the main thing is to spend more time with the Lord. No more rushing, hurrying through my daily Bible reading and prayer time. I’m looking forward to that.

Sometimes we see retirement as the ending of something. I’m seeing it more, these days, as the beginning of the rest of my life 🙂

Saturday

This is a ramble. Saturdays are good for rambling.

We’ve had a horribly hot and humid week, but today we have our AC off and our windows open. I can hear birds, frogs, lawnmowers. I can even hear the breeze that’s moving the tree branches. Well, no, I can’t hear the breeze itself, but I can hear the leaves fluttering and brushing together. The air smells clean and sweet, and it’s a totally pleasant out there. A beautiful summer Saturday.

My mind goes back to summers in Portland, Oregon where we lived for five years from about 1955-60. It often rained a little in the morning, but then it would clear up and be warm, not hot. Very little humidity. We’d walk to the municipal swimming pool and spend the afternoon there, then walk back home. On the way, we could enjoy big fat blackberries that grew wild along the roadside. Back then, nobody worried about safety for kids walking over a mile just to go swimming. This was in the little town of Milwaukie, a suburb of Portland. It was a delightful place, and I was sorry when we moved into the city.

Image result for municipal pool in Milwaukie, Oregon

There was so much to enjoy out there. The beach. The roses. The Rose Parade. Jantzen Beach, an amusement park. Just being able to be outdoors and not worry about mosquitos! And Mount Hood, too.

Image result for Oregon coast
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Image result for Portland, Ore. Rose Gardens

That was a golden summer for me. I’ll never forget how much I loved it there.

I love it here, too. We live near Philadelphia, but you’d never know it. Lots of green, lots of trees and other vegetation. Rolling hills. It’s a beautiful drive to church every Sunday, and on Thursday morning when I go down to teach a Bible study class.

And then there’s Lancaster County, which is a beautiful place just to go for a drive:

Image result for Lancaster County scenery
Image result for Amish Farm in Lancaster County

I am often reminded of I Timothy 6:17:

“Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, Who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.”

God didn’t need to make the earth beautiful. He could have just made it practical. Aren’t you glad for the beauty of the earth?

Home!

There really is no place like home.

Our flights were problem-free. We had wheelchair help arranged at each place, from check-in to baggage. What a wonderful help that was. You get taken to the front of the line, and everyone seems to be perfectly okay with that. All our helpers were polite, kind, and efficient.

It’s very hot here in our corner of PA. Supposed to be record-setting highs tomorrow, up to 100. Ugh. I’m missing the cool mornings and evenings near Oxford. We had wonderful weather the whole time we were there. This heat saps my energy. I’m looking around at all that needs to be done, and I don’t want to do any of it! We do have central air, which is a huge blessing, but there’s just something about the atmosphere that changes with that kind of heat.

I was just looking through Dan’s pictures, and this one made me hungry 🙂 This was the meal they prepared to celebrate our 50th anniversary. The rosemary was cut fresh from the garden. The aromas of the rosemary, meat, and veggies roasting was unbelievable. Sooooooo good!

I can’t remember if the Peacock Garden was at Blenheim or Warwick, but this photo perfectly captures the peacock in full display:

Josh, Victoria’s boyfriend, is from New Zealand. He certainly met a lot of us all at one time–not sure, maybe that’s not a good thing. Hope we didn’t scare him off 🙂

Ivan with his mom, Sheila.

You can see that when I get started posting everyone’s photos, it’s hard to stop. They all bring back such a good time.

Well. It’s good to be home, and we have memories of a lifetime with everyone who was there.

I’m hoping to get back to my regular blogging tomorrow with Sunday Morning Coffee, and then back to Ecclesiastes on Monday.