Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Blessed New Year to All!

It's that last day of the year. December 31st. Christmas is over and many of us are wishing hard for a better new year. So here's to a peaceful and contented New Year for everyone!

Blessings! :-)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Safe and Content Holidays

Well, despite the dry socket I have after the tooth extraction, life is going better! I can say that after this Christmas, I will be very careful around the Holidays and those icy day of winter! Winter has always been my favorite season of the year, so that will not change but the care taken on icy days will definitely be on high alert from this day forward.

This year has been a hard year for almost everyone who lives here in West Michigan, I know we're not alone in our financial and health experiences and difficulties. So during the last days of the year 2008, I am thankful for the many gifts and friends who have been in our lives, or simply passed through. All have left their own special foot prints on our hearts and I am very grateful for all I've learned - especially about love and life from all those in my life.

Here's to all I know and have known among the days that came this year. I wish God's blessing on you all, and a blessed New Year to everyone! As one of my favorite writer's who also is a Rabi in our area said, "Do not wish a Happy New Year, but rather one filled with explorations, new discoveries and contentment!"

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


It's happened again, the third has done more than haunt us in recent weeks - my husband fell on the ice and smashed the bones in his elbow. After many pieces were removed, and the doctor re-attached the tendon he ended up in a plastic formed splint, and finally we're back home.

No definite prognosis as to how much range of motion and strength he will have, but he's home and that by itself is a real blessing.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I Do Love the Winter...Most of the Time!

We're in line to get another storm tonight and tomorrow during the day, but as the week progresses we will be getting rain and temperatures around the mid to upper 30s. This is a strange winter! We got 10 inches with the last snow storm we had on Friday, and now it seems we are in for 5 to 10 more inches!

Winter here is always the ups and downs - sometimes severely cold all the way to low to mid 30s. It is seldom solidly cold and snow, that's why we all complain about brown, or gray snow that comes from the mud and water from the melting snow.

I have to admit that though I love snow and the winter weather this early winter weather has made me think - is this going to last through March? As I've mentioned before we usually have winter actually begin with all the snow and cold in early January that runs through early March, but if it lasts until then it will end up being a whole month longer! I guess I am hoping for a warmer January!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Storm!

We are in the middle of the worst snow storm! I haven't seen one like this since the late 70s! The snow is coming down 2 inches every hour - and sometimes more! I did go out for breakfast and my girlfriend dropped me off at the end of the driveway and it took me 8 full minutes to get through the three foot drift at the end of the drive and then plowing through the 2 foot we've already gotten!!! (Note nothing but exclamation points will do to express this really wild weather.)

My husband is at work and this is so bad I am worried about him getting home since the police (Holland, State and the sheriff's Dept.) have all said, "get off the roads!!" Such is life in the winter here in Western Michigan!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Second Plague: Continued

I am on my second of the three bad things that usually happen in a row! No, of course it's not really horrible things - but I am certainly ready for this stuff to stop that is for sure.

Of course I had my gall bladder out on the 30th of November. Well, tonight around 4:00 p.m. one of my back molar cracked - yup it just chewing a seed, no grinding my teeth either. When I got to the dentist's office and he started the process of taking out the piece of tooth and getting ready for a root canal and crown when he discovered the tooth was lose! After much ouuing and ahhhing over the tooth, and after much discussion with his assistant and looking again at the x-rays he discovered that low and behold the tooth was dead, and infected to boot and it had to be removed.

Forty five minutes later and full of Novocain (Really full - 4 shots worth!) I was off to my Thursday evening prayer group. I am now living on Darvocet, and unable to eat anything until tomorrow...UGH! Okay, I wish this stuff would stop!!!

Update: My husband fell on the ice Sunday morning snow blowing the driveway - shatter his right elbow...three is the limit, right?!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Technology Gone Haywire!

Does anyone have an iPod Shuffle like I have? I've had exactly a year and 35 days and all of a sudden it won't complete the re-charging unless I physically connect to my iTunes on the computer! I called 1-800-MYAPPLE because I was so frustrated today since I plugged it in for a recharge and 8 hours later it was still blinking yellow! I was sure the battery was dead so I called the number and we walked through some steps (On and off five times and turn on and re-plug in to the computer - normal dance thing!) and then the customer service person recommended that I click on my iTunes if it was on the desktop and it started acting like it was finishing the recharging!!! The green light came on and everything seemed normal!

This is so strange - actually my Palm Pilot is doing about the same thing too. I cannot get my synchronizing to happen unless I click the HotSync Manager button on my desktop.

Now that I think about it, I had the computer in to the repair shop about a month ago and this has all happened since then when they "fixed" my elderly computer!!! Very frustrating! This technological help can be very frustrating at times...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sing a Song

A song that comes from Sesame Street really holds me, and every once in a while the words wash over my heart and remind me that life is simply singing our song the best way we can in this world. The show has had many memorable songs, ones that can make you cry, or laugh, or maybe think.

It's Not Easy Being Green is one, or how about Rubber Ducky! But I have to admit the one that really touches me is the song named in my title above. We all like to sing even if it's only in our head...or maybe in the shower! It's a way to express our pain, anger and joy and each of us probably has at least one song that really can make us feel special or maybe even cry.

For me that song is Sing. Written by Joe Raposo this song has been done by others like the Carpenters, but done simply on Sesame Street it became so much more than a singable piece. It became an anthem for being who you really are in life and in your world. Bob and the cast said it, no sang it the very best -

Don't worry that it's not good enough
For anyone else to hear,
Sing, Sing a Song.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Christmas Way of Life

Almost everyone has heard of the story, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and many agree with the sentiments that are expressed of caring for others and not ending up a Scrooge. But what is really strange is we forget when it comes to our Christmases that we shouldn't try to out-do the gift thing, or get caught up in the craziness that drives the secular Christmas machine every year.

For me it took losing a job a few years ago to realize what matters, and now with my whole family simply getting by with the depression that Michigan has been experiencing for the past few years we've come to share more time together and enjoy the fun of game night. We're changing, and I hope we don't lose it ever again.

You see I'm an English teacher who got to do research on the times that, A Christmas Carol was written in and they were the poorest and some of the most non-caring times in Great Britain's history. Scrooge pretty much epitomized the wealthy class' view of the poor and downtrodden. Because Dickens had a footing in both worlds and had experienced extreme poverty during his childhood he saw the need to some how make the wealthy aware of their moral responsibilities to those around them.

But if you know anything about the story and Dickens, you know it really began not as one to make people aware, but simply to tell a story and to share the idea of Christmas which in years before had not been much of a celebration. His celebration centered around love of family, friends, and the world around.

Today, we all are losing wealth and it's happening all over the country - now, somehow we need to get back to that feeling of sharing an evening with the people we know, work with, and love in these hard times. Christmas is a religious holiday that is a celebration of God's entrance into the world among us. Personally, I think that simply sharing a love with each other with "no strings" is a great way to be that love of God in the world. It really all can start with just caring for someone else. (And yes, I am a bit passionate about this!)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


We are vacillating between the high 30s and rain, and the lows 20s and snow, snow, snow! This is an interesting weather phenomenon even for Michigan, and the strange thing is we already have a third of the snow we usually get during our winters and we're only in the first month of what is winter here!

Our winters usually begin in January, (sometimes the end of December) and run through February...well, sometimes mid-March, and most of our snow is accumulated in the the first two months of the year. We are, if we get the regular amounts in those first two months, for a record breaking year for snowfall!

I think that's cool, even if most people think it's yucky. Kind of bad for pot holes though...

Monday, December 8, 2008

Snow, Freezing Rain and So Much More!

From snow to freezing rain, that's where we're heading this evening. I got all my errands done today early and am well settled in my little house waiting for the worst. We've had winter so early this year. It almost feels like it's the end of January rather than about two weeks before Christmas! This is can mean it will be a long winter, or that January will be never can tell! After all it's West Michigan, wait five minutes and the weather will change! Jouissent!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Celebration Meals

My first dinner out since the abominable surgery. I had white fish and a romaine lettuce salad - it was heavenly! I couldn't even eat half of it before I was stuffed, but it was so good! It's funny but after not eating for over five days, and then having everything taste like sawdust this was truly heaven...and I didn't have to do the dishes!

I really enjoyed the this special treat for our shared birthdays (well, almost!), and anniversary that I think it will go down in memory as one of the best I've ever had as a celebration.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Slow and Slower

Cold and colder, that's the weather predictions for our area for the next week. Lake effect snow with that colder air is what winter is and we're truly entrenched in it. I'm going to try to head out to my garden soon to finish what I began before my rather sudden recent surgery. Though the sunflowers and Joe Pye weed are all brown, the area birds are dancing through the remaining stalks and making for quite a picture in the mornings while I'm enjoying my cup of tea.

Life is hitting its slower pace, that pace that comes with slippery roads and storms that can stall almost everyone's life. With all that has happened in the past months a little less along with an appreciation of what we have no matter how small is a way to find a peaceful time of joy and peace this Holiday Season. I know I'm all for that!