Life is Short…But it is Wide…

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Dear Reader:

I have come to the conclusion that since life is short…the only way to squeeze the most out of it is to go lateral!

It is like spreading my favorite pimento cheese on a slice of bread…I know it is going to go fast…because I love pimento cheese (one special brand) but if I spread the cheese thick and cover every single corner of the slice…I will have made the most of one “delicious” moment in life. (My mouth is watering just thinking about it…thanks Jackson for picking me up another container of it!)

When we hear expressions like “Spread the Joy or Spread the Happiness” it is the ‘spiritually correct‘ choice of words. Like my pimento cheese sandwich…if we spread joy and happiness to every corner of the world…reapplying it quite heavily …the world has to respond back with the euphoria of sharing this planet with everyone else.

Instead of me just having one happy place…we are allowing everyone to find his/her own special place that speaks to each of them… without a single word being uttered.

The only problem, we need to keep in mind ( when it come to expanding our  lateral life to its fullest)…is that if we choose to look at life negatively…it, too, will soon cover every corner of the world. The choice is ours… and that brings me back to a favorite quote of mine from Brer Rabbit.

cc32903e2403cbee3e82d47be9b1c7bc “Don’t go looking for trouble…it

will find you soon enough.”

 

 

 

Can’t  we mere mortals get ourselves worked up “into a pickle” over things that we have no control over? (Believe me when I say I include myself into this particular “mere mortal” category)

We keep worrying over possible problems that might happen at some time in the foreseeable (or not) future. It is like having an aching tooth…we know if we stick our tongue out and press on it…our tooth is going to hurt like the devil…but we do it anyway…over and over and over again.

Poor God…He must shake His head in disbelief and frustration at His creations that exist in human form.

We are a “piece of work” but certainly not the “work” God originally designed and/or intended.

film_feature-1543I think Ellen Burstyn (playing Vivian) in the movie: The Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood …while apologizing to her daughter Sandra Bullock (playing Sidda) …summed up the human tendency to prolong the agony of problem-solving with these (now) famous words:

“Oh…you know me Sidda…I can take a bone and chew on it until all the flavor’s gone and then stick it in my hair.”

So until tomorrow…Let’s try burying our “bones of worry” with God…He can handle everything we toss at Him…so let’s toss the bone…rather than “stick it in our hair.” (or we will “laterally” have to use more shampoo)

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

* Burying our worries reminded me of my favorite all-time commercial…remember this one- Travelers Insurance?

Travelers Insurance dog commercial (very funny) – YouTube

* Look what Ambika sent….a collage of precious pictures of Ajay…Ambika also asked for prayers for her… as a new young mother learning afresh about motherhood.

..She told me she was still reading the blog but she was too tired to respond.

Ambika…we have all been there…soon this early babyhood stage of sleeplessness will be a distant memory….replaced by the more demanding challenges of toddler-hood and so on and so on and so on…Welcome to Motherhood!!! It’s a lifetime job…the best one in the world!

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*Little Tinker has become a very involved member of the fairy community…she just completed making this Fairies Welcome sign for others who need a place to call home.

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* Cindy Ashley just sent me an interesting story about two people who drew a line that forever changed the existing culture of “This land is our land.” Until tomorrow….

* Walsh sent me these pictures…paddle boarding Sunday evening and fishing Monday evening with the beautiful sunset on the horizon…a little male bonding going on….glad that paddle board isn’t short but long…and wide! The good life!

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Up, Down, and all Around…

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Dear Reader:

Rutledge welcomed one and all to the Old Village Post House for Ben and Vikki’s birthday brunch…it would be filled with lots of ups and down and all arounds...as several attendees took Lachlan for awhile for Mollie/ mom to eat. This  involved walking around…so there was a lot of strolling and shaking up and down, playing with Ady and Rutledge and ‘downing‘ drinks.

When I first got to the restaurant with Kaitlyn…I asked for the Lee Barbour party…and we were taken to “the bar” for another party instead…my right ear is still stopped up from an earlier summer cold and I feel my voice echoing inside my head when I speak (drives me nuts)… somehow what I asked for was definitely misinterpreted by the waiter.

Then, however, we were taken “up“stairs to a lovely room and we did have a good time!!! Up and down and all around!

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* Did anybody else pick up on the strange “breeze” blowing inside the eating room causing one curtain to sway…this way and that way…all around.…Rutledge is two now and he’s quite good at it.

The “ups and downs and all arounds” continued as I stopped by John and Mandy’s to welcome them back home and get some hugs from Eva Cate and Jakie….Jakie was in his bouncer going up and down and Eva Cate was all around… from modeling a new dress, to showing me her pink Mickey Mouse earrings (that she bought with some Boo Boo money) to drawing our pictures on her art board.

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TiggerIMG_6530 looks a little “down” with his “Minnie Mouse” ears on…but he was trying to act appreciative. He was just so happy to have his family back home with him.

 

 

 

As John was showing me some of the Disney family photos on the television screen…I noted how many roller coaster rides they went on…and even noticed W.T. with his arms raised during these particular rides.

A popular analogy to life is the idea of a roller coaster with all its ups and down until the ride finishes….but, now, the closer I looked at the roller coaster pictures yesterday… the more an idea took root…the people with their arms raised in the air only raised them during the downward steepest descents…(when momentarily the ride looked like it was ‘out of control’)….but yet, amidst the squeals and screams, some people embraced the moment and freed themselves of all their fears with arms raised high as if shouting “Allelujah“! “Hit me with your best shot!”.

( As seen in some of the John, Mandy, and family photos of Disney World)

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If you are like me…I try to avoid the downward trends, as much as humanly possible, and even pray for God to take away some of the low spots.

Later…(it would only be after the fact)…that I would realize I had been trying to avoid a life-altering opportunity that has shaped me into the woman I am today.

So until tomorrow…the next time life starts to resemble a roller coaster, climb into the front seat, throw your arms in the air, and enjoy the ride…it’s called life and well worth the trip!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

* Speaking of round…and square…let me share some of your thoughts on the premise that: “There are no squares in nature.

Janet Bender says:

Thanks for helping shine light on why I’ve always wanted shrubs trimmed rounded, not flat topped and square. Without knowing it, I have been “at one” with nature all along!

Janet and I think along the same lines ….as you can see from my pictures of roundness I have placed around plants and trees and circular decorations too…..starting with round stepping stones leading to the magic moon gate garden.

Here is an excerpt from Johnny Johnson on his thoughts about nature and the circle of life…

You made me think today and remember thing I have learned and it all comes from our God Who put all these circles right under our noses to remind us that there is the all important circle of life.

Even the spirals you wrote about are kind of circles without an end, showing us the circle of life is everlasting and eternal! Thank you for bringing these thought to my mind that remind me there is life everlasting and eternal for those to choose to believe in our God, who is everlasting and eternal too!

* Walsh and Rutledge ended the day together yesterday on the paddle board….Rutledge’s first time…he did great sitting very still…a little dad and son bonding time.

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Sweet or Unsweet?

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Dear Reader:

For true connoisseurs of sweet tea (who grew up in the south) the question of  ‘sweet or unsweet‘ is considered a sacrilege to all things held sacred about the south. There is no such thing as “unsweet” tea. Whoever heard of such a ridiculous connotation?

In David Lauderdale’s column “Don’t Be Stirring Up Trouble with our Sweet Tea” he interviews a Bluffton, SC barbecue man for his thoughts on the subject.

Bluffton barbecue man Ted Huffman’s words were as refreshing as a sweating glass of iced tea in late July:

“There is no reason to drink unsweet tea,” Huffman declared in our newspaper last week.

Erin Shaw had simply asked, “How do you take your tea?” And he went off, like a lot of people do when it comes to sweet tea.

“My generation grew up down South assuming that Jesus saves, Rock City is worth seeing and all tea is sweet.”

Sweet tea has become a symbol of what little is still right in this world…and for us sweet tea drinkers …we are utterly stunned by the very insulting question: “Sweet or unsweet?”

“Sweet or unsweet?” sounds like fingernails on a chalkboard to those raised on the words of a steel magnolia: “Be sweet.”

………………………

A couple of years ago I was eating at the Barony House one Sunday with some friends and I couldn’t help but overhear a heated argument going on between a husband and wife sitting adjacent to me.

The waiter had asked both of them what they wanted to drink and the woman replied” Iced water” and the man declared “Sweet tea” and keep it coming…he was thirsty.

The wife immediately interjected that her husband would have unsweet tea and went on to give the poor waiter his whole health history ending with his latest diagnosis of diabetes 2.

The husband’s face started turning as red as a beet from 1) embarrassment and 2) mounting anger at his wife’s “big mouth” as he later addressed her.

The waiter parroted “iced water and unsweet tea” but gave the angry husband a sympathetic glance and whispered that there were real sugar packets mixed in with the “fake” stuff on the table.

The husband sighed at the waiter….“Yeah…but if you don’t sweeten it while it’s hot…it’s never the same.” The waiter nodded sadly in agreement and departed.

The husband then turned his attention back to his wife who was simmering too….”You know, Harold, the doctor told you to cut out sugar…you could lose a limb over your sweet tooth.”

Harold pounded the table and muttered “I will be glad to sacrifice my big toe to the southern cause if you will just stop telling everyone my business and let me drink my sweet tea in peace woman!”

The wife’s eyes glistened with tears and she excused herself to go to the restroom…the husband immediately signaled the waiter to make it sweet and bring it quick…the waiter winked and the drinks were served by the time the rather subdued wife took her place back at the table.

Harold apologized to his wife (while gulping down his sweet tea) peace ensued… and all was right with the world again…none  the wiser.

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Lately I’ve been taking the middle road when it comes to tea drinking… which would make Aristotle quite happy: “Moderation in all things.” I ask for half and half with a lemon…and then usually whisper…”If you don’t mind…put the sweet on top.”

This worked fine until I had a male waiter one day who leered at me upon hearing my usual request…“So you like it sweet on top do you”…an easy accommodation I assure you.” He winked and leered again….while I fell out of my chair laughing…a southern man can turn any conversation back to sex…even a sweet tea conversation!

One “tea’ anecdote I heard recently was pretty funny and it was about tea tasting funny.

“When someone told my great-grandmother her tea tasted funny, she said, “Well then, drink it and laugh.”

Someone else remembered: “At Christmas, my mother would fancy up her iced tea by adding some pineapple juice.” (It was the only time it was allowed to be “tampered” with…)

…That anecdote reminded me of an incident that happened a couple of weeks ago to me at Mr. K’s Piggly Wiggly in Knightsville. I ordered  lunch to take with me from the deli and then I added that I would also like to get some half & half tea (with lemon) to go.

While the server was making the tea I was checking off my ‘to do’ list and not paying any attention. After I checked out and got back to my car I took a sip of my tea and slammed on brakes…what was this I was drinking?

I went back inside carrying the large styrofoam cup and asked the woman behind the deli counter what she had put in my half & half tea I ordered.

Why half tea and half lemonade…like you wanted…half & half.” 

I tried not to laugh…as she went on to tell me that ‘half & half” was her favorite drink too. Weren’t it good?

Actually it was…while still sipping away I had just come to that conclusion…that, not only was it not half bad, it actually was pretty refreshing. We learn something new every day.

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* I now have one whole shelf, in my Happy Room, dedicated to Summerville and its ‘sweet tea’ history…I figured it was the least I could do to show my town pride.

 

 

 

…And I even added the historical coasters to my table setting.

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If any one missed the CBS Sunday Morning special segment- a couple of weeks ago- on (‘Summerville winning a “coveted” award in the Guinness Book of Records for having the largest sweet tea container)…I am including a link to it. It is a fun segment with lots of laughs. It made me proud to call Summerville my home.

​Let’s raise a glass to iced tea – CBS News

* Every time I look at this picture of Rutledge tasting his first sweet tea (and that tea was super-duper sweet) I have to laugh…so much sugar entered his bloodstream so fast his eyes were soon rolling back in his head. He had ‘died and gone to heaven.’

…And nobody was taking his container from him…as far as he was concerned he had won the Willy Wonka gold medallion! That tea must have tasted like the sweet tea served in the Governor’s Mansion …once described by an invited guest as:

“I’ve sipped tea from a stemmed glass at the South Carolina governor’s mansion, where it is famously so sweet a spoon stands straight up in it.”

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So until tomorrow….When in doubt always choose “to be sweet“…because we make the world sweeter by doing so.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

old-village-post-house-inn-44206* A big shout-out birthday wish to Ben and Vikki today…they both share  the same birthday! We are having a family Sunday brunch gathering at the Old Village Post House…always a great breakfast and good company.

* Tomorrow we will go back and address some of your wonderful comments about nature and shapes…round vs. square…they were great!

 

 

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Nature is Round for a Reason…

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Dear Reader:

I had just finished making a banana sandwich and plopped down in front of the television around lunchtime yesterday when a story from the segment “Extreme Homes” on HGTV caught my attention…(especially since I had been working in the garden most of the morning.)

It was about a woman who bought a fairy tale home (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs) so, of course, the segment immediately caught my attention. I turned up the television just in time to hear the new owner say that there was not one single square room in the whole house.

In fact the home was built around a redwood tree which acts as the “axle” for the circular rooms. When the owner asked the original contractor why there weren’t square rooms in the storybook cottage…he simply replied ” There are no squares in nature.” 

He went on to explain that this unusual  home was built completely from what nature could offer in its ‘natural’ state…like the ring around the redwood tree…everything is circular…in God’s universe.

I kept chewing away (I was hungry and is there anything better than a peanut butter/mayo banana sandwich?) but I was also digesting that interesting fact which I had never considered before. “There are no squares in nature.”

So after lunch I grabbed my camera and quickly realized the truth in the contractor’s comment. There are no square flowers, bushes (unless you cut the hedge “squarely or rectangularly”), square hanging baskets, square tree trunk rings…everything in nature is round.

One article I discovered on this topic commented that ‘nature is round and humans are square“…meaning narrow-minded when it comes to how we treat nature and also inefficient in the way we construct man-made homes.

Since I am human ( I think)  I must take up for some of us human “rounders“…because as I looked around my deck…every table, every plant stool, every planter was round….then all throughout my garden I had added round lanterns and round decorations throughout…

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As I stared at the latest blooms…more and more circles appeared…

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It is my fondness for circles that made me ask John Lee to make me a fence gate with a moon shaped (cut-out) circle right in the middle….my magic moon gate.

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When it comes to building things man definitely leans towards squares…perfect squares to make him happy…and rectangles while nature keeps circles going ’round and round.’ One does wonder about the implication between “square” humans and “round” nature. Is that why man always seems to be in conflict with nature…trying to force a square object in a round hole?

One respondent to this idea wrote:

…”Trees have rings because they grow from the center, water droplets are round because the attraction holds the molecules together and the sun is round for the same reason. Nothing man-made “grows” or is a force revolving at such great velocity that it would become round over time. Man’s creations must be structured and strong, and the most efficient structure is rectangular.”

Another thought from another reader reminds us:

” A bubble is round because circular and spherical objects are the most efficient forms in the universe. They have no weak points. Look to old Rome. The domes were a pain to construct, but will last for a very,very, long time”

Haven’t we all heard expressions like “The circle of life?”Since God doesn’t make mistakes…there must be a reason why our planet is round, the sun is round, plants in nature are round…and trees have round rings to show their origin and age.

So until tomorrow…If our universe is round…could it possibly be that God wants all of us included in the circle of life that He created for us?..Not cast away in some sharp corner of a square, triangle, or rectangle…but placed right in the middle of His spiritual sphere…loved beyond comprehension? I think so.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

* Speaking of storybook and fairy tales homes…I introduced little Tinker Bell to the other fairies in the garden…and she was welcomed by one and all…even finding her grandmother…Nana Tinker Bell…with a hug and happy reunion!

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When “Little’ Tinker first arrived…she was rather afraid of Mr. Moon but soon realized he was pretty nice once you got to know him.

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She, even, got to ride the garden bunny with a new friend and finally found her new home inside a sunflower.

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*So see Lucy…Little Tinker made a wise choice to “re-locate” to Boo’s garden…she now is surrounded by family & friends…thanks for sending her down south to us!

IMG_6348 (1)* Yesterday July 24th was Jakie’s 10th month birthday…soon we both will be having a birthday…he will be one year old and I will be….ummm….older.

IMG_6418* Happy Birthday, also, to Linda Carson, my friend, mentor, and guide through this journey called life…helping me through all the obstacles “little c” has thrown at me….thank you Linda.

(Anne and I dropped off flowers and muffins for this special lady!…a benchmark birthday!)

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Eva Cate comes from a long lineage of flower givers…giving flowers to Linda during a chemo session.

 

 

 

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The Importance of A Window While Washing Dishes…

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Dear Reader:

The only “unhappy” spot in my house is the location of my kitchen sink…my window-less kitchen sink.

I need to go to some contractors’ meeting one day and tell every contractor around that no one should ever build a house with a kitchen sink that doesn’t have a window in front of it to look out of… (Of course I realize that having two units in one house pose some problems but with a little creative thinking…I do believe my house could have been rearranged to accommodate this situation.)

Call me crazy…true confession time…but I have been lugging dishes, pots and pans and silverware from my kitchen to the B&B side to wash over there so I can look out the window at my garden and watch the butterflies and bees flitter throughout my sanctuary.

I, also, watch the grandchildren’s trees grow…inch by inch and change colors. I see the moon flower vines finally climbing up the magic moon gate and the passion flower vine adding more buds each morning.

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I get so caught up in God’s “Playground” outside the kitchen window I forget I am even washing dishes…if I finish too soon…I grab some dirty dishes out of the loaded dishwasher and wash some more. See…I told you I was nuts!

Actually there is another and more logical reason for lugging the dirty plates and utensils over to the other side beside nature….as much as I love it…my hot water heater died a few weeks ago.

Since I am blessed to have two sides (within one house) with different units and appliances…I have been showering and washing dishes on the other side. This has led me to the conclusion that no one should ever have to load a dishwasher or wash a few dishes in a kitchen sink without a window…there is something really aesthetically incorrect with that situation.

IMG_6395Monday I finally broke down and called SCE&G to come put in a tank-less hot water heater…because the heat got to me. ( I don’t run any electricity on the other side unless someone is staying over there…and it was getting too hot…even in the early mornings to stay over there for very long.)

So now I am the proud owner (scratch that…the proud “indebtee”to SCE&G for the next several months) of a tank-less hot water heater…sure hoping that it saves as much on monthly bills as I have heard from numerous people.

So now that I am no longer ping-ponging back and forth with towels, washcloths, extra clothes, and dishes…I decided to add some new sayings to the shelves on my side so, at least, I have something fresh to think about….like:

“Once in a while…right in the middle of an ordinary life…Love gives us a fairy tale.”

and “Live the Life You Imagined.”

I think I will change the messages periodically to keep me pondering new thoughts and ideas.

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karenwhite-header-virtua-03My summer readings (you might remember) started out with Karen White’ s latest novel: The Sound of Glass...to date it is still my favorite and most memorable summer read.

Part of the reason has to do with the story behind sea glass and the beautiful light and sound it makes when mounted as chimes.

I got so caught up in the story…that I ordered a sea glass chime and hung it from the moon gate…now in the early mornings and late evenings…I sit on the deck or in the garden and listen to the chimes and remember some of the memorable quotes from the larger-than-life character… Loralee in the book.

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Scroll down this website and you will see the trailer to “Loralee’s Journal of Truths“- *You will get to hear some of the funny and wise thoughts of Loralee that she wishes to leave for her ten year old son one day.

New York Times Bestselling Author Karen White: Official …

From the novel  I, now, like to think about sea glass (called the mermaid’s tears) …pounded and battered at the bottom of the sea… until one day the glass rides a wave onto the shore…(and though mishapen and discolored)…it still shines and bring joy to the world through its beautiful light and music… if transformed into a chime.

So until tomorrow…let us remember that light does shines on brokeness, like the sea glass, but it also reveals the perseverance, strength, and beauty within each of us.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

* Anne returned from Oregon so it was time to replace Boo’s Garden jar with more flowers…and I took a “pot luck” dinner over…(which might put me in the Guinness Book of Records for going the longest period of time without cooking…it was a pot roast with all the fixings/potatoes/carrots….rice, butterbeans and mac and cheese.)

(The way I see it…if you are going to cook…make a lot of it!)

Anne said a package had arrived from Lucy, her sister, (who came to see the garden while here and we shared dessert together) and the package was for me….

*This is what was in the message and envelope…too funny. (Decided to wear it like a pin!)

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It was a miniature “Tinker Bell” fairy for the garden…Lucy was so funny…she said the little fairy had been in a planter on her window sill…and had asked to “relocate” from Ct. to SC….so here she is….will introduce her to all the other garden fairies tomorrow. Thanks so much Lucy!!!

Anne picked some more daisies for me to return home with and then went over & kissed her morning glories….Oregon was beautiful, she said, but there is nothing like home…the lowcountry and her morning glories.

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* Anne just found out (yesterday) that her sister, Nancy, has been diagnosed with breast cancer and in addition she is in the process of running tests to check out some nodules discovered in her neck. Obviously Anne and her family are quite concerned waiting to hear back from the test results and would appreciate any prayers offered for her behalf.

Wednesday night must have been “Dinner with the Princesses”…looks like Eva Cate got to meet them all! Way to go girl…work that room!

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When I went out on the deck last evening…everything had started cooling down after the quick but wonderful rain yesterday afternoon…there was a nice breeze blowing, the sea glass chimes were tinkling and I just said “Thank You God” as loud as I could. Don’t you just love life?

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Try a Little Kindness…

 

 

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Dear Reader:

Can’t just one little act of kindness turn your day upside down?

It might just be a smile, a small courtesy, or a compliment…it doesn’t really matter…. the act itself isn’t as important as how it made you feel when you received it.

I remember hearing one time a minister saying that grace and kindness are and will always be interwoven…you can’t separate them…because God gave us grace-unconditional love and forgiveness…the kindest act in all the universe….and all God expects in return is for us to ‘pay it forward’ to our fellow man.

I was on the receiving end of a “little act of kindness” earlier this week. I had gone to the Dollar General Monday to pick up some detergent, paper towels, cleaning products, and toilet paper.

It wasn’t until the next day (when I opened the hamper where I keep the toilet paper) that I noticed nothing was in there. ‘That’s strange’ I thought…I remembered putting everything else up…I had bought a package of toilet paper (12 rolls)  on a sale aisle for just four dollars. (Obviously I am not too picky about toilet paper…unless it feels like sand paper)

I went and looked in the car and everywhere else I could think of ….but there was no bag with the toilet paper lying around anywhere.

“Darn it” I thought…I bet I forgot to get all the bags off the carousel. I had long ago thrown away the receipt but I thought it was worth a chance to call the store and see if a bag of toilet paper was being kept behind the counter.

After I explained the situation…the clerk looked and returned to the phone saying there was nothing under the counter and asked if I still had the receipt. I told her “no”…unfortunately I didn’t realize it was missing until the next day.

Never mind” said the clerk...just come on in and get another package.”

Excuse me” I uttered in disbelief…I can really just come in and get another package of the toilet paper on sale?”

Sure….why not..you paid for it?”

Still stunned I told her I was on my way. A few minutes later I saw a young lady at the Dollar General counter and asked if she was the one I had talked to and she said “Yes”…. Oh, by the way, we moved those sales packages of toilet paper to the last aisle…”

IMG_6391 (1)I picked up another package and when I walked to the counter…she said “Oh good…you found’em….

“Are you sure about this?” I asked…”I feel badly about not having a receipt…obviously it was my own fault for forgetting to pick the bag up…I can pay you the four dollars.”

What toilet paper?” she laughed and winked…”I didn’t see anybody walk in here, pick up some toilet paper, and leave..did you?” 

It was only then that she grew serious…“Lady…why would anyone call the store and then lie to me about some missing toilet paper….you sounded very kind on the phone and I know you are honest…if we can’t trust each other…what kind of example are we setting for our children?”

I hope you have a blessed day” she said as she left to continue working on some inventory.

“I just did” I responded…she grinned and I smiled…it just takes a little kindness.

Last night I wondered…What if God gave us a dollar for every act of kindness we gave to others while on this earth…would we be rich in more ways than “one”….then later I thought “What if God took away a dollar for every time we had an opportunity to be kind to someone and didn’t?…what would our financial ledger look like then?

One of my favorite country singers…Glenn Campbell…is in the last stages of Alzheimer’s. In an article I read while in the Speedee waiting room last week…there was an observation (in it) from one of his daughters who had gone to see him (last month) in his care facility.

Even though he is long past recognizing loved ones…he still smiles when anyone walks in his room to see him…and the only thing he is interested in is a hug (no dollar) and trying to make the other person smile…( he will grab a french fry off his tray and pretend he is smoking a cigar…hoping to get his “guest” to laugh)

Kindness is so ingrained in him that even now his last thoughts are on other people…not him. Perhaps that is why he is such a beloved artist.

So it only seems appropriate to end with one of my favorite songs of Glenn Campbell…“Try a little Kindness”  

Lyrics:

If you see your brother standing by the road
With a heavy load from the seeds he sowed
And if you see your sister falling by the way
Just stop and say you’re goin’ the wrong way
You’ve got to try a little kindness yes show a little kindness
Yes shine your light for everyone to see
And if you’ll try a little kindness and you’ll overlook the blindness
Of the narrow minded people on the narrow minded streets

Don’t walk around the down and out lend a helping hand instead of doubt
And the kindness that you show every day will help someone along their way
You’ve got to try a little kindness…
You’ve got to try a little kindness…

The Glen Campbell Music Show Intro/Try a Little Kindness …

So until tomorrow…Let’s take a chance on people….after all God took a chance on us…undeserving us…look what happened…we have life and love…let’s pay it forward.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

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Play the Ball where the Monkey Drops It

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Dear Reader:

How many times have we heard that it is not the amount of curve balls we receive during our lives that define us as individuals but it is our response to the curve balls…

While following this train of thought, the other day, I happened upon an article and later a book about this very subject using a true life experience that made me pause and ponder….

In Tara Brach’s (Ph.D) article ” – “It’s Not What’s Happening…It’s How You Respond” (Psychology Today)  she re-tells one of her favorite stories on this topic.

One of my favorite stories took place a number of decades ago when the English had colonized India and they wanted to set up a golf course in Calcutta. Besides the fact that the English shouldn’t have been there in the first place, the golf course was not a particularly good idea. The biggest challenge was that the area was populated with monkeys. 

The monkeys apparently were interested in golf too, and their way of joining the game was to go onto the course and take the balls that the golfers were hitting and toss them around in all directions.

Of course the golfers didn’t like this at all, so they tried to control the monkeys. First they built high fences around the fairway; they went to a lot of trouble to do this. Now since monkeys climb…they would climb over the fences and onto the course… That solution just didn’t work at all.

The next thing they tried was to lure the monkeys away from the course. I don’t know how they tried to lure them—maybe waving bananas or something—but for every monkey that would go for the bananas, all their relatives would become “new members” of  the golf course and join in all the fun.

In desperation, they started trapping them and relocating them, but that didn’t work, either. The monkeys just had too many relatives who liked to play with golf balls!

Finally, the golf club trustees caved in and established a novel rule for this particular golf course: The golfers in Calcutta had to play the ball wherever the monkey dropped it. At last those golfers were onto something!

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To me…this amazing story reminds me of the popular manta: It is what it is.

The saying, itself, is fine and true to a point…unless the human response to it is one of self-defeat and self-victimization.

If “It is what it is” is said with a big shrug and a larger sigh (indicating a perception of  ‘being done unto’ by the world) it is of little value.

But if we look at situations as temporary and do-able over an extended period of time…we see the incident as only a “hiccup” along our path…and sometimes, like in this case, a very funny one.

Brach comments: “If we are to find any peace, if we are to find freedom, what we need to do is learn to pause and say, “Okay. This is where the monkeys dropped the ball. I’ll play it from here, as well as I’m able.” 

And if we can find a little humor in the situation…like creating a golf course where one plays the ball from where the monkeys drop it…well… like the old adage says…”If you can’t beat’em… join’em” works well too.” 

So until tomorrow….Let us dig deep when problems and difficult situations arise (and they will…such is life) and start to understand that God is giving us an opportunity to show the ‘spiritual stuff’ we are made of…Let’s make a good showing!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

* With the Turners at Disney World…Tigger is staying home with Uncle Tommy and Aunt Kaitlyn… he appears to be just fine and doing his thing….eating and sleeping…and of course, that other thing.

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* I love this old picture of mother and one of the dogs on the farm growing up ….on a visit back home after graduating from Winthrop College and starting work in North Carolina.

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John sent this picture from Casey Junior Splash & Soak… Eva Cate is having a great time! A fun way to stay cool!

 

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…and as far as Jakie goes…well, he’s just “bug-eyed” with excitement!

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