“God, Help me Get Out of My Own Way”

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Dear Reader:

As 2016 winds down and I take some time to reflect back on it…the year can probably be best summed up in one word: CHANGE. And since life is constantly changing…I could just as easily substitute the word LIFE for CHANGE. In 2016 I experienced life…crazy, unpredictable, unstable, surprising life.

I have had the privilege of being alive to experience all the up’s and down’s that life brings us on a daily platter. We can plan and plan the menu of life… (what we think will be served on the platter but the “Maitre’d” can change the menu at a moment’s notice.) …Without our permission.

The most important lesson, in this scenario, stems from the fact that it is not what life “dishes” out to us that will ultimately define the quality of our lives; it is how we react to the changed plans, the changed menu, that shows others our real selves lying deep within us.

downloadAt the age I am now…there are no illusions left in me. I might, earlier in my life, have gone a different direction from what I would have chosen personally… to please others….but that is long past. No…the only deterrent left between me and the best life I can be living is…me.

I still “mind game” far too much. I let the fear of losing what security I feel I have in my life control too much of my decision-making… the reality is…there is no such thing as security in life…the animals already know this and have gotten over it…but we poor humans spend way too much wasted time trying to “secure” our homes, jobs, loved ones, environment, etc. It is a fruitless lesson in futility.

My resolution for myself in 2017 is to stop worrying about security issues, and instead hand that facet of life over to God so I can free up more time to be around my loved ones…the focal point of my life and continue finding adventures and excitement in life. It is the risks that make life worth living…that make life memorable and send our hearts pulsing to another beat…that only each of us can hear.

So until tomorrow…”Get out of the way Becky”! and let the good times roll! Life means nothing if you sacrificed everything for a balanced budget at the expense of doing nothing. 2017 is going to be for living!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

  • As I was writing the blog yesterday afternoon…it happened! What I had been waiting for all week…the sun! The rays shot straight down on my ginger plant outside my computer room and I was filled with joy! I have needed that sun….so I closed up shop early and left to go lie out on the deck and soak up some Vitamin D…my blood count will thank me.

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*What made my blood count thank me even more was an invitation from Anne inviting me for dinner last evening. Turkey croquettes, red potato casserole, sweet potato casserole, string beans….delicious. I could just feel my blood count climbing higher and higher with each bite. I told Anne I felt like Super Woman after that meal….ready to take on the world!

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Before we ate Anne was showing me some fascinating photos using an app called Waterlogue .  It takes our photos and changes them into works of art. Fascinating! To show me an example of how you do it…Anne took a photo of me and then chose  two selections from Waterlogue . See the differences for yourself.

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Preset Style = Vibrant Format = 6" (Medium) Format Margin = Small Format Border = Sm. Rounded Drawing = #2 Pencil Drawing Weight = Medium Drawing Detail = Medium Paint = Natural Paint Lightness = Auto Paint Intensity = More Water = Tap Water Water Edges = Medium Water Bleed = Average Brush = Natural Detail Brush Focus = Everything Brush Spacing = Narrow Paper = Watercolor Paper Texture = Medium Paper Shading = Light Options Faces = Enhance Faces

Preset Style = Travelogue Format = 6" (Medium) Format Margin = Small Format Border = Sm. Rounded Drawing = #2 Pencil Drawing Weight = Heavy Drawing Detail = Medium Paint = Natural Paint Lightness = Auto Paint Intensity = More Water = Orange Juice Water Edges = Medium Water Bleed = Average Brush = Fine Detail Brush Focus = Everything Brush Spacing = Medium Paper = Buff Paper Texture = Medium Paper Shading = Medium Options Faces = Enhance Faces

As I was leaving Anne’s I asked her where she had gotten that decorative Christmas horn on her front door. It reminded me of one Mother used to decorate our house every Christmas for years while we were growing up.

Anne said it was in her family, too, for a long time, then recently she found it stored away, spray-painted it gold….she remembered it was time to turn the horn up instead of down (after Christmas Day) to let the “Good News” out Jesus Christ is born! (which she did) Does anybody else recognize this decoration growing up? Lots of horns in our baby boomer Christmas memories.

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About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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