The “Saturdays” of Life…Between Life and Death

Dear Reader:

*Before I start today’s post Doodle texted me last night and asked if I had seen B.C. in Sunday’s comic strip. I had not. She told me it would have made the perfect title photo for the connection between the Christmas star and the Easter cross (Easter Sunday’s blog post.) She sent me a link to it and I agree…an Easter God Wink.

The name of the cartoon is “The Easter Star” – like Doodle said the cartoonist and myself were on the same thought wave. Goose bumps! There is so much symbolism in this cartoon as B.C. follows the beauty of the earth (flowers) until they lead him back home again…under the star that began it and the cross within it brings us all back home. (*The ant declares he feels lighter as if (perhaps) suddenly he has become unburdened…someone has taken the weight of the world off his shoulders and he sings a happy tune)

What is the old saying…something about “Man plans, and God laughs.” This was certainly true of Easter 2019…it actually turned out just fine but we did have to plan around a curve ball…Eva Cate getting sick Saturday evening and onward throughout the night.

Mandy called me a little after 8:00 a.m. yesterday morning…I was just coming in from the garden placing the last egg in the back yard for the Easter Egg Hunt. All was done…hunt ready, baskets ready…eating out for an Easter Sunday Brunch…this was going to be an low-key but enjoyable day.

Mandy now told me Eva Cate had gotten sick during the night and had everybody up until the wee hours of the morning….she thought she had just a good old-fashioned stomach ache and they were still coming to meet me for the church service but it would probably be best to cancel the breakfast buffet. Instead they would bring honey ham slices for sandwiches and picnic type food.

I had to laugh to myself…(since I figured God was) with all my pre-planning… Even though it was a little “iffy” whether Eva Cate would make it through the church service… (which she did)… it was  Jake who outdid himself  being “good” and hilarious at the same time.

Throughout the sermon our pastor would ask a rhetorical question…Jake didn’t simply nod or shake his head (like other members of the congregation)  but called out (loudly) “Yes!” or “No!”while simultaneously nodding or shaking his head. He did create many a chuckle to those brave enough to sit around us.

At the end of the service…all I could think of was that Jake Turner had made it all the way through a church service without once rising out of his seat…Hallelujah! I think we have turned the corner…

There was one statement that our Pastor Jeff Kackley made during the service that caused me to ponder about it after everyone left yesterday afternoon. He spoke about the drama of “Good Friday”…the sadness and tragedy and then the happiness and sheer bliss of “Easter Sunday” -two emotional extremes. We mortals, however, while on earth, have to live most of our lives somewhere between these two extremes… within the “Saturdays” of life.

Thank goodness we don’t have too many horrific tragedies in our lives or even extreme exhilarations because we can only handle emotional extremes for a limited amount of time…and then, don’t we find ourselves longing to “return to normalcy?” We are most comfortable within the “Saturdays” of our lives.

Having said that, however, don’t we soon realize that “significant, life-forming times are the dull in-between times.”  The phone rings  on a rainy Tuesday morning and our life is changed forever…for either better or worse;  the doorbell rings and happiness or tragedy stands at our door on a typical Wednesday afternoon… or in today’s world, a text pops up on a mundane Monday evening that starts a chain reaction turning our world upside down. We look back and think…”I never saw it coming.”

We dwell among the in-between days but what we do with these days leads us to the top of mountains or to the bottom of the valley. We should face each day as one that is special and open for possibilities …because the benchmark days will come on the “normal days” out of nowhere. We should always be watching for them.

So until tomorrow..Wouldn’t we all like to think at the end of our life that we would fully realize in reflection  “Bottom line, wasn’t life itself a special occasion?” (Mitford)

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

In spite of some drawbacks…this Easter was still a special occasion because I had family here with me…and I got so much ‘lovin’ (kisses and hugs) in church from Jakie that I have stored it all up to last for at least a week… until Eva Cate’s birthday.

Checking out the “loot”…the kids are getting to be experts on the Easter Egg Hunt…they have already figured out to keep finding the eggs and stop only after the hunt to check to see what they got…never during the hunt itself or you will find less eggs.

Jakie’s wishes were too sweet at the wishing well – He closed his eyes and wished for Eva Cate to feel better and ride the race car ride (at Disney) with him next time and for God to love His mommy and daddy. Way to go Jake!

Tommy and Kaitlyn checked in…they were visiting with family today in Tennessee and had stopped by the Sierra Nevada brewery over the weekend. Safe travels home!

I must say that at Bruce and Marcia’s house…the terrain definitely adds more required agility in finding Easter eggs than the flat lowcountry! 🙂  And poor Eloise…what happened to her eggs?

The boys also got to go to Darmouth and watch them play Harvard in a baseball game….fun….hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy and anything thing else that apparently got close to them by the vendor!

Everyone together and happy ….we might have been scattered but still family is always family in our hearts no matter where they are.

 

*I fell sound asleep in the recliner yesterday afternoon and was awakened by Chelsey bringing me a barbecue plate she had made…what a wonderful ending to a wonderful day.

Happy Easter everyone and have a wonderful week!

 

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Easter: At the Heart of it All…The Manger and the Cross

Dear Reader:

As one walks through downtown Summerville…some decorative street flags have the name of the town on them and others say: “At the heart of it all”…in other words you are right where it all began…the first “downtown” that would spread out to become the town of Summerville.

It made me start thinking…We always go back to the cross at Easter …because that is the symbol “at the heart of it all” for Christians around the world…but shouldn’t we go all the way back to the manger?

It was one line that I read in the last book of the Mitford series that made me connect The Christmas Story to the Easter Story. The connection between a star and a cross.

Father Tim had gone to visit an old life-time friend in a nursing home one Christmas morning and listened to her reminisce about the joys and sorrows in her life. As he was washing his hands at the sink, according to visitor regulations…it suddenly came to him…

“With all the joy and hope and laughter, there’s always, somewhere, the sorrow-just as there was in the manger that pointed to the cross.”

Haven’t you ever looked at the sky on a particularly beautiful night and started rubbing your eyes because you could see crosses overlapping the five-pointed stars? All shapes and sizes…some straight up…some crosses slanted to the right or left.

When I researched this…there are all kinds of explanations for this “optical illusion”…some for telescope lenses (quite complicated explanations) and other explanations for the naked eye…something about radiation in the skies…all playing “tricks” on what we are seeing. Is it a visual trick?

Billy Graham (“The Cradle, The Cross, and the Crown”) wrote:

Christmas, to have meaning, cannot be separated from the cross. The angel said at the birth of Jesus, “He will save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). Jesus Himself said, speaking just before His death, “For this cause was I born” (John 18:37). He was the only person in history who was born with the purpose of dying.”

I loved the metaphor Graham used in his article…it makes something complicated easier to understand.

“During World War II, many a mother would take her son and try to keep the memory of the father, who was away at war, in the memory of the boy. One mother I heard about took her son every day into the bedroom and showed him a large portrait of the father who was away. And one day the little boy said, “Mom, wouldn’t it be great if Dad could just step out of the frame?”

That’s what happened that first Christmas. For centuries men had looked into the heavens longing for God to step out of the frame, and at Bethlehem that’s exactly what God did.”

So until tomorrow….Take a few minutes and gaze up at the stars this Easter Sunday…the same stars that shone the night Jesus was born…what wonderful memories they keep hidden within them and perhaps a star will beckon you as you see a cross form in the sky… like the cross beckoned Jesus all His life….“Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh  “Happy Easter”!

 

 

 

It is Easter….so it is time for the fairies to return to the garden and they arrived just in time to help hide the Easter eggs for Eva Cate and Jakie today. I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter!!!

Easter Surprises in the Garden!

You can tell “Little Big Red” can stand alone….no more “little” in its name…maybe “Big Red” Jr….bigger now than “dad” at his peak! Thanks for the Easter bloom “Big Red”…my “resurrected” cloned miracle plant!

 

I put another suet cake out yesterday afternoon and the first ones to show up for dinner were Mr. and Mrs. Sammy the Cardinals. This time it was Mrs. Sammy who was throwing down food for Sammy…not the other way around. Taking turns at dinner time!

 

 

 

I was thanking Joan again for her Easter painting she sent me several Easters back and she said she had done another one, since then that she would send but couldn’t find it….but she surprised me yesterday by sending beautiful spring flowers and an adorable duck…Easter is here!

 

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An Eerie “Good Friday”

Dear Reader:

Yesterday morning I awoke to the sound of wind and rain…the rain didn’t bother me (we need it)…but the strong winds sure did. Ever since Hurricane Hugo I admit that strong winds make me edgy.

I dressed and went out in the garden to remove decorative flags, lower hanging baskets, and put all the recently cleaned lawn chairs back in the garage…*they were already turned over and rolling around by the strong wind gusts.

It was heavily overcast, hot and humid…I felt like I could cut the humidity with a machete. I turned on the weather and every channel was warning the low country of high, potentially damaging winds, and torrential thunder storms rolling in after lunch. So I decided to run all my errands in the morning so I could bunker down for the worst of this crazy weather system going through on this Easter weekend Good Friday.

My daughter Mandy, in Mt. Pleasant, said the sun was out there and the children had been outside playing all morning…what a difference a few miles make when a system comes through… I was already hearing that lots of power lines were down in Walterboro, St. George was without power, and the storm was heading towards Summerville.

The gusts from the winds felt like it could take a roof off…Luke came over and helped me secure everything and we made the decision to take “Big Red” in… it had given me a special “Good Friday” surcie by producing its first bloom of spring of 2019 with lots of clusters still around. But the gusts were actually bending the stems sideways….inside it went.

The weathermen now predicted that the storm would hit Summerville a little after two….it started getting darker and darker as you can see from light lantern that came on.

I started hearing thumps and bumps on the roof from branches falling and the lights started flickering on and off. I had just taken this picture of two limbs falling outside the computer room when the lights went off and stayed off for a short while.

As I looked out the back I saw my “Mr. Lincoln” stem with buds on it pop and fall over from the wind gusts…I think its muscle “stem” popped on its rotary cup too Brooke. It did make me sad…I was so excited about its first bloom…it is always so gorgeous.

Libby is in Pawleys Island for  Easter weekend with her family but she still has a house in St. George. I called to let her know about the power being off  there and we started talking. She first brought up the idea that this Good Friday was starting to eerily resemble the weather conditions on the original Good Friday (this had happened to her one other time she could remember)…

This time our winds and darkness started around noon and continued until around three when the winds suddenly slowed down to a breeze..and a gentle rain replaced the torrential one. It has also dropped  about 15 degrees and is actually cool (67 degrees) in comparison to the earlier morning hot humidity.

Luke 23: 44-46

It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun’s light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last.

“We often romanticize the Easter story, painting it with pastel colors and muting its meaning with graceful choir music. But let’s remember that Easter is much more than a peaceful sunrise. Christ’s resurrection came only after the earth itself groaned in violent agony.  

The first Easter was not quiet. It was marked by strange weather patterns, eerie noises and geological upheaval. When Jesus died, the earth experienced the most dramatic power outage in history. God shook the foundations of the planet. Then with His own hand He ended the old covenant system and invited us to boldly enter His presence by a new and living way.” (Source: “The Shock and Awe” CBN News)

So until tomorrow…”We can always comfort a child who is afraid of the dark…the real tragedy is the man who is afraid of the Light.”

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

I picked this phone pocket up to place on the back of my iPhone to remember to do exactly what the message says:

“Do More of what makes You Forget to Look at Your Phone!” 

Yesterday I was thankful for my phone to stay tuned to the weather and friends and family…but I know I need to use it less for other communications and instead get out and live the life Jesus sacrificed Himself for us to have.

 

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“Remarkable” Remarks

Dear Reader:

As you know I love quotes and new words….language fascinates me. Since I taught the Presidents I researched not only Presidential inaugural addresses for the perfect quote…but also fun quotes that made them human…showing their wit and humor.

But no matter how famous a quote or speech (“Fourscore and seven years ago”) I don’t think anything takes the place of a kind remark that can change a life completely around.

President Lincoln was famous for calling for clemency when given papers to sign for executing Union soldiers for a series of different military infractions. Short of treason, President Lincoln always thought that a live soldier was more valuable to the war effort than a dead one.

The generals demanded that the President be tougher on his pardons or he, as commander-in-chief,  would wreck havoc with their discipline…so President Lincoln used the “red tape” of government to keep delaying as many of these death sentences as possible throughout the war.

The following true story is an example of how kindness and wit certainly saved many young soldiers’ lives from execution by a kindly, sympathetic President.

Let me give another anecdote bearing on the same subject. A Congressman went up to the White House one morning on business, and saw in the anteroom, always crowded with people in those days, an old man, crouched all alone in a corner, crying as if his heart would break. As such a sight was by no means uncommon, the Congressman passed into the President’s room, transacted his business, and went away.

The next morning he was obliged again to go to the White house, and he saw the same old man crying, as before, in the corner. He stopped, and said to him, ‘What’s the matter with you, old man?’ The old man told him the story of his son; that he was a soldier in the Army of the James – General Butler’s army – that he had been convicted by a court-martial of an outrageous crime and sentenced to be shot next week; and that his Congressman was so convinced of the convicted man’s guilt that he would not intervene.

‘Well,’ said Mr. Alley, ‘I will take you into the Executive Chamber after I have finished my business, and you can tell Mr. Lincoln all about it. On being introduced into Mr. Lincoln’s presence, he was accosted with, ‘Well, my old friend, what can I do for you to-day?’ The old man then repeated to Mr. Lincoln what he had already told the Congressman in the anteroom. A cloud of sorrow came over the President’s face as he replied, ‘I am sorry to say I can do nothing for you. Listen to this telegram received from General Butler yesterday: ‘President Lincoln, I pray you not to interfere with the courts-martial of the army. You will destroy all discipline among our soldiers.’ – B.F. Butler.”

Every word of this dispatch seemed like the death-knell of despair to the old man’s newly awakened hopes. Mr. Lincoln watched his grief for a minute, and then exclaimed, ‘by jingo, Butler or not Butler, here goes!’ Writing a few words and handing them to the old man. The confidence created by Mr. Lincoln’s words broke down when he read – ‘Job Smith is not to be shot until further orders from me. – ABRAHAM LINCOLN.’

‘Why,’ said the old man, ‘I thought it was to be a pardon; but you say, ‘not to be shot till further orders,’ and you may order him to be shot next week.’ Mr. Lincoln smiled at the old man’s fears, and replied, ‘Well, my old friend, I see you are not very well acquainted with me. If your son never looks on death till further orders come from me to shoot him, he will live to be a great deal older than Methuselah.’ 1

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Kelly Rae Roberts shared a sweet story about kindness in her newsletter concerning her eight-year-old son, True. Now that they are living in a small town…the restrictions on bike riding have been lifted somewhat allowing True much more independence which he loves.

He rode his bike to the local bike store and found some cycle gloves that just fit his small hands. He was so excited and told the owner he would go home and ask his dad about getting them for him. When he got home, however, Kelly’s husband said “no” for the moment…he would talk to True about earning some money later. Disappointed True got on his bike and rode all the way back to the store to let the owner know that his dad had told him he couldn’t get the gloves “right now but thanked him for finding a size that would fit him.”

The owner looked at the tired little boy who had made the trip back again just to let him know and he told True he could see he was a good boy and he liked helping good boys. He gave him the gloves.

When True got home he was so excited and told his parents what had happened. Kelly said she felt like crying because True missed their old house in Portland, his school, and friends…but now he was starting to feel an affinity for this smaller town he was living in where people showed an interest in each individual and demonstrated kindness in so many ways.

Whether kindness is shown to a little homesick boy or from a President to a sleepy young teenage soldier…the remarks made in one moment can change lives and memories forever. Kind words are “remarkable” remarks. Words for the ages.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Look Who’s Back….I love it when annuals pretend to be perennials and return the next year! My pintas and others are popping up everywhere!

This reflection of my birthstone hanging door angel reflected off the glass storm door early yesterday morning as the sun rose..so by the time I came into the den ….there was its silhouette growing larger across the back wall. I knew it was a sign that all would be okay with Brooke and her appointment.

I went early to Walterboro so we could spend sometime together before the appointment. We both liked her doctor and thank goodness the news is fixable but it will require surgery…the x-rays showed the muscle in her shoulder is completely torn from the rotator cup. Everyone was extremely kind and we both feel like she is in good hands…and always in God’s good hands.

The big moment in the Boston trip for Rutledge was when he got to drive the duck boat in the water (looks like a natural) and Caleb, Brooke’s little grandson tried on the bunny mask/sunglasses Boo brought  him yesterday. Too cute!

 

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More Important than “Who Am I” is the Question “Who Am I Not”?

Dear Reader:

We have talked about the stress we feel when people reassure us to “Just be yourself” in a challenging situation. Growing up I always wondered how we could be ourselves if we didn’t know who ourselves were?

It has taken me a lifetime to get there, to know me…and I am still learning more about me every day… and will continue to do so until I take my last breath.  I have also discovered that the best way to get to know yourself better is to eliminate attributes and characteristics that don’t apply any more to the every-changing you.

It reminds me of mother’s advice when I was dating in high school and college. I would sigh and say something like… I was tired of dating “toads” – there seemed to be lot more “toads’ than “princes” out in the dating world. Mother would reassure me that every “toad” experience was helping me eliminate the type of person I didn’t want to be with…narrowing down the field to someone with similar values and outlooks on life that could be shared one day.

I think this is true in all facets of life…every hurtful, bad, scary, sad, humiliating experience we endure in life teaches us something new about ourselves and helps us eliminate, not only, the causes leading up to these negative experiences but also finding ways to detour around them through using different perspectives and attitudes. More importantly we learn how to rise above experiences we have no control over….leaving these in God’s arena.

Every circumstance does help us build character if we let it. We should never feel sorry for ourselves for failing at something. Failing is just another elimination lesson in self-discovery of success and our inner passions and contributions to the world.

I can honestly say that I am happier now than I have ever been…because I feel an inner joy that was not there under the stress of raising children, working, living month to month, worrying over mother’s dementia, etc. We certainly had our share of happiness, don’t get me wrong…I have scrapbooks of all these pictures…birthday, graduations, trophies, awards, family gatherings, holidays, etc.

But as we all know (or come to discover) “HAPPINESS IS BASED ON WHAT IS HAPPENING AROUND US. JOY IS BASED ON WHAT IS HAPPENING WITHIN US.” – MARGARET MINNICKS.

In spite of health challenges today…I have the amazing luxury of time to think, read, garden, write to my heart’s content, be with friends and family….surrounded by love …God ‘s gift to me is one of life…living long enough to discover the constant joy in me when I see something beautiful, as in my garden and know that I simply must take a picture right then and there. Sheer joy!

Luke and I added “sound” to the garden today…cleaning out the fountain and turning on the motor again…it still works! Happiness! All my hostas returned again this year…:) Triple happiness! Remembering the moment I saw all this beauty… inner joy!

What I have discovered about happiness is that it is fleeting, at best, and terribly stressful… if tied to personal goals…because once you achieve whatever status you thought you wanted to obtain… to reach your ultimate happiness aim…it is time to “out-do” or “out-best” yourself and raise the bar higher and higher. (Exhausting and completely unfulfilling…with only slips of happiness in between.)

So these days I can eliminate the “toads” that deter me from finding fulfillment…”toads” concerned only with self-interest, greed, compliance with wrongdoings, judgmental bias, apathy and narrow-mindedness. It is only when we reach down deep and make our soul the one true compass that inner joy comes home to stay.

So until tomorrow…The most important thing we will rejoice over or regret at the end of our lives is relationships. Not money, goals, houses, cars… (possessions) but the relationships in our lives that brought us love and joy… that is where our last thoughts will dwell…the menagerie of moments and people who brought God’s love into our heart and soul.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

*Today Brooke is getting back some results on medical tests she had taken earlier…done on her left arm …that has really been bothering her…quite painful. Please keep Brooke in your prayers as she receives more information on the source behind her intense discomfort and reviews the options to correct it. Thank you!

As you can see…Brooke is one gal who has more unassuming joy in her than anyone I have ever known…now I want to see some relief for Brooke and that big smile back on her face.

 

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“Big Stuff? God’s Got This!”

( DaySpring Company…sent to me by Susan Johnson and the Presbyterian Women….thank you! Love it!)

Dear Reader:

Don’t we all have those times when life just seems to be too much- period? As hard as we try to stay afloat life seems to keep pulling us down to the point that we are ready to give up…except for that one voice deep inside that keeps reminding us that what we are going through is certainly an “annoyance” but it is not the end for us.

Dave Willis, in his article (Four Things to Remember When Life is Hard)… remembers vividly one particular morning that about took him under until he stepped back and remembered four important things about his relationship with God.

“I was getting all three of our boys ready for school which is a massive undertaking and makes me respect my wife even more because she is normally the one doing it! Amidst the screaming infant and complaining grade schoolers, there was a mess in the kitchen, a dirty diaper on the floor, toothpaste on the sink and stress in the air. When we FINALLY got out the door, Connor had forgotten something and had to run back in. The door was open just long enough for (I’m not making this up) a bird to fly in the house.

Now, I’ve got to figure out a way to get the bird out of the house and all the kids loaded up as fast as I can. I eventually got the bird out (unharmed) and the kids loaded and just before I pulled out onto the main road, a garbage truck cut me off and started driving about five miles per hour and stopping at every other house. I wasn’t sure whether to scream or laugh at the irony of it.”

After Willis dropped the children off at school and he finally had time to calm down and re-think life’s trying moments he decided on these four important “tools” needed in our daily dealings with life.

1. Remember that your Character should always be stronger than your Circumstances.

Circumstances will come and go but what lives forever, in the memory of others, is how you reacted to trying circumstances…your character.

2. Remember that your Struggles always lead to Strength.

All pain has a purpose. God uses difficulties to strengthen our faith and perseverance.

3. Remember that God’s timing is always perfect.

We must learn to stop trying to force our preferred timing upon a troubling situation but instead, learn to wait on God’s…because it is always perfect timing upon reflection.

4. Remember that God will never leave your side.

Once you ask God in for help you are not alone and never will be.

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Yesterday I heard a moving story that so touched me and lead me to believe that God is not just there for we humans in frightful circumstances, but He is there for all His creatures… including a remarkable dog. Boonrod…the name given to an amazing rescue dog from the sea in the Gulf of Thailand.

The rig crew gave it a name, translated loosely to ‘survivor’, in Thai it translates to “making a spiritual donation for good luck in the future.”

Somehow, the name just fits perfectly: Boonrod.

Everything had to happen perfectly for the crew on the Chevron oil rigger to even see the small head bobbing up and down in the sea. Then another miracle to get close enough without scaring the dog and tie a rope around him to pull him in without hurting him. But all came to pass….speculation is the dog fell off a fishing trawler but when and for how long he had been “dog paddling” until spotted… no one knows.

The crew all fell in love with the Aspin dog but sent him back to land on another passing rigger so he could be checked by a vet. He was pronounced in remarkably good health. The head crewman (Payalaw) of the Chevron oil rigger plans to adopt him if no original owner appears.

So until tomorrow…Father, thank you for never leaving any of your creations alone but always staying within each one’s heart beat.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

The Dingle clan has arrived safely in Boston…Hallelujah! Enjoy it to the fullest and prayers for continued safe travels and adventures.

*Their hotel overlooking Boston Harbor….looks like a beautiful day!

*Gin-g is eligible for the needed surgery which she will have at the end of May ….thanks for everyone’s prayers!

 

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“Believe in Your Shelf”

 

Dear Reader:

I love this mantra for our new independent indie bookstore in town (Main Street Reads)…located on 115 Main Street….right down from Eva’s Restaurant.”Believe in Your Shelf.” Reading accomplishes that very thing… it provides a sense of belief that we can do anything we set our minds to do…with the help of God and belief in ourselves.

Shari Stauch (owner along with family) does believe in having an independent book store and I agree. There is something just magical about wandering through a small book store…a feel and smell of books that one can’t get in the giant book retailers like Barnes and Noble. (Of course even these large retailers are having financial problems with amazon.com luring most customers away.)

I would be hypocritical, however, if I didn’t put my name in the amazon.com pile…it is alluring…competitive prices and two day delivery with prime….Who thought even a decade ago home deliveries would return as a popular alternative to actually shopping retail? Sadly many small boutiques and even chain retailers are being forced out of business by home delivery…it is a tough market out there today with technology changing our culture faster than anything else to date. It is getting harder to predict how long a marketing project will last.

Some things are hard to put a price on… the atmosphere of a small book store is one of these…all children should experience it and come to love it …let it be one of their first remembered “sanctuaries.”

I want to urge the residents of Summerville to support our latest addition downtown…Main Street Reads. I love that the Sauches are already bringing in local authors and book talks/signings are on the calendar…The next one coming up is Summerville author Kathryn Taylor…Two Minus One- given an outstanding review for one of the exciting new authors in 2018 by Kirkus Reviews.

 

I wish I had taken Rutledge and Eva Cate into the book store and the children’s room…adorable…great books and a talking parrot…what more could one want …unless it is a bird singing in a cage or cat that looks more real than a real cat named Veronica. (If you have a book store one must have a cat!) And so much local history…both children would have gone nuts looking at the pictures.

The (mechanical) parrot repeats whatever you say…even imitating my ridiculous laugh…loved this parrot! (Of course I was told he had to be kept in a separate room from “Veronica”… the store cat.)

An “old-timey” jukebox radio for listening music and another mechanical singing bird in a cage awaits each customer too. Perfect!

The old vintage photos include a visit from President Theodore Roosevelt touring the tea farm (second on the left), the 100th (centennial) anniversary of Summerville as classic old cars parade down Main Street.

The famous original Summerville Arch welcoming visitors to our town and the replica of it over Hutchinson Square now.

 

As I constantly look around me and wonder how so many books ended up on my end tables…I remember author Jan Karon (author of the Mitford series) making this observation.

“As long as you have any floor space at all, you have room for books! Just make two stacks of books the same height, place them three or four feet apart, lay a board across them, and repeat. Viola! Bookshelves!”
Jan Karon

So until tomorrow…Viola! She’s right! Let’s start making some “book” shelves and go to Main Street Reads and start filling the next plank up…besides we will be supporting the community in the best way possible…showing children the importance of reading!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

*Today is the day Gin-g hears back from all her tests she underwent recently and will be given the go ahead for surgery or not… based on the test results. Please keep her in your prayers that her surgeon will have positive, hopeful feedback for her and a chance at a better quality of life! (11:00 a.m. appointment)

Today the Dingle family is heading to Boston for a short tour/stay-over …before going on to Mollie’s parents’ home (Bruce and Marcia) for Easter weekend. Have fun…take the Duck boats, go see the Old North Church and Paul Revere Museum…*Maybe I should warn Boston…”The Dingles are coming, the Dingles are coming!” Make some amazing memories…we will miss you!

Eloise has her first pony tail…she is so happy…which reminds me Rutledge…impress the tour guides with the name of the horse that carried Paul Revere and the muffled oars of petticoats for crossing the Charles River! See below.

*If you take a tour of Boston Rutledge…don’t forget the horse Paul Revere rode in the famous “Midnight Ride of Paul Revere” (Poet- Longfellow) was named Brown Beauty (fastest horse in Boston) and another fact…that  one boat man borrowed his girl friend’s petticoats to wrap around the oars to muffle their sound since the British ship in the harbor would be listening for anyone crossing…which they did… Paul Revere and friends crossed the Charles River and warned the residents “The British are coming”!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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