SNOW DAYS – HOME DAYS

I realize not everybody loves snow and cold. I realize some people have to get out and work despite the weather conditions … and I have been one of those in the past. My husband skidded his way to work today in my car … his didn’t survive the temps of the last few days and it currently mostly-dead.

BUT … I can’t help but rejoice just a little that I am STUCK AT HOME right now!! It started snowing Sunday and today we are still feeling the consequences. MORE SNOW is on its way tonight perhaps. This is not normal for our part of the country, but at this moment, I am SO HAPPY to be HOME.

Despite freezing temps, we are staying warm. In the past, we have always had electric heat – cold temps would equal super high bills!! The house we rent right now has natural gas heat and a wood-burning fire place. So thankful right now … especially since our local electric companies are threatening blocks of timed power outages to conserve the maxed-out electric supply.

We haven’t seen a snow plow yet .. but today the sun shone for a few hours. I got our sidewalk and the drive way shoveled. It felt good to be outside in the crisp air! VERY crisp air!!

My kids are all at home. We picked up Andrew on Sunday night so he could work from home here and we could feed him! 🙂 It’s been kind of nice to have him back. Anna’s kids are snowed in with their parents, and Miriam is doing home school all week. I’ve been cooking a lot, baking a little, cleaning and organizing … and taking a few naps.

I am pretty sure next week’s forecast isn’t this cold and doesn’t threaten snow, but for now, I am enjoying these days at home. Wherever you are, I hope you are safe, warm … and happy!

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Let’s Catch Up:

Today I feel this urge to write – to document life lately … I get the urge often, but lack the time & energy. Besides, do you all really want to hear about my days that go something like this:

Get The Mims ready for school. Get me ready for work. Go to work – fight with insurance / Medicare/ Medicaid and people who don’t understand their insurance plan (well, I don’t fight with them, I try to approach them with kindness …) and dispense home medical equipment.

Pick up The Mims from school … and currently 2-3 afternoons a week I have been working a second job. I have always said God provides our needs – not so much with pennies from heaven (though we’ve gotten a few of those!) but by HARD WORK. ha! It is an easy second job – helping my former pharmacy register and bill COVID vaccines (they are giving up to 100/day).

By the way – that is not a plug FOR OR AGAINST the Covid vaccine. I have chosen not to get it although we have been offered it as “essential workers” … but I am not ready to do that. I still don’t know how I feel. I work with a respiratory therapist and have also spoken with a micro-biologist I know: they are Christians and both agree COVID is a virus that needs to run its course. Much like the pandemics of days past … sadly, there are casualties and vulnerable people affected long-time if they do survive. But many of my friends and family who have had it have just had “the worst cold of their lives” or lost their sense of smell or were just exhausted for a while …

On the flip side, I have health care workers I know personally and work with (many also Christians) who have gotten the vaccines (you have to get a series of 2) and believe it will protect them and those who they come in contact with. And yes – they have had some side effects – but nothing more than extreme muscle soreness or a low grade fever. Again, the vaccine effects everyone as differently as the virus itself does.

So, I wear my mask – am careful around our patients/clients and elderly family and those with compromised immunity. But I am not afraid. God knows the number of my days … and when my time comes, He will take me Home via a virus, a disease, a tragic accident or just in my sleep … And that is all I will say about that.

In other news that I want to document: things have changed so much in the last months! My son has moved out – shares a place with 2 friends – but he stops by often for meals and still goes to our church and such like. He has a great job – not in his chosen field but it makes for valuable experience. He works in the IT department and helps with the budget as well. His company designs high heat resistant components that are used in things like the International Space Station. They have contracts with the government, the Air Force, and NASA. It is basically a research / engineering facility that coordinates with the University of Arkansas. Fascinating stuff!

Anna has her own room – and her own life – now that Andrew has moved out! She is a nanny to her former youth leaders’ kids and their cousin as well. She is super involved in various ministries (all in coordination w/ her youth leader / campus ministry group). Most recently she has been asked to play the piano for a church about 45 miles away … and so she has been praying about that opportunity. It is a bigger church with more opportunities for ministry – to include children’s ministry. She is taking a class at a local “Center for Mission Mobilization” (CMM) and praying about her future. She may not be a foreign missionary, but she is learning so much about trusting God and taking advantage of every little opportunity for ministry that we are given daily. She has been teaching me what she learns and it is such an encouragement!

Miriam is working her way through 5th grade. Her teacher wondered if she had a “language processing disorder” and we have been going through the assessments for that diagnosis (I guess you call it?). I don’t have any experience with this so I am along for the ride! From what I have learned, she has many of the symptoms of dyspraxia (don’t have time to explain it all!) … and if she needs help, the public school system can send tutors to her private, Christian school to work with her. The ladies we have met with so far have been SO encouraging and kind. We have our final meeting the end of this month for them to give their analysis, but as one lady revealed to me already, Mims is smart, well-spoken, and out-going — but lacks confidence perhaps in a classroom setting. She told me Mims is an ideal candidate for virtual or home-school as she THRIVES on one-on-one learning .. and I have been praying for a while that one day I can educate her at home. Especially as she approaches junior high — until then I am thankful she has a Christian school to attend.

There is so much more on my heart and mind, but this is all I can process today.

Happy Weekend – we are hopefully getting our master bathroom assessed today as we have found BLACK MOLD in the wall by the tub. I have had severe allergies and lost my sense of smell for a year or more now (allergies for more years than that!) so maybe getting this cleaned up will help heal me! I sure miss smelling warm, baked bread, roasting meat, flowers, and other wonderful aromas (cat litter, the lingering scent of the chicken processing plants near my work, and other pungent odors….not so much!)

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Realizations #2

When I was young I had this unspoken list of things I couldn’t even begin to imagine – like a list of things I thought I’d never be able to overcome … or I prayed would never happen to me. I feared certain scenarios … maybe beginning with the fact that I’d forever be single. Which makes me chuckle because I got married at age 22 … and I was so worried I would never find “the one”. Now I tell my almost-20 year old daughter who would love to be in a relationship, that she is still young and to enjoy her single days … to not waste them, to not wish them away. And yet, at a younger age, those “fears” are so very real.

My realization about all this started in earnest over 22 years ago now, when we were in the midst of our infertility journey. Before marriage, before having a family of my own, I remember thinking I’d never be able to deal with having a handicapped child. I honestly thought that would be the most horrible thing in the world to happen to a parent.

We lived in Germany for 3 years, stationed there thanks to the Army, and in our 3 story apartment building, we lived upstairs … and the family that lived below us became our very best friends. They had a son who had cerebral palsy. He was about 4 years old when they moved in; he was severely disabled: couldn’t walk, talk, or do much of anything. But in the course of watching him in those almost-3 years that he was our nearest neighbor, I watched his parents in awe. They parented him as if he’d speak any time now, walk soon, or respond to them in a deliberate manner, even though he wouldn’t and couldn’t. This child was the most loved and cared-for little boy I ever met!

I began to get comfortable with this beautiful boy who expressed joy with huge grins and guttural laughs … who suffered quietly when he wasn’t feeling well … who didn’t demand much more than love, hugs, and someone to talk with him. I ended up baby-sitting him some nights while his parents got a much-needed break; and I was amazed at how easy and fun he was to be with. Sure, diapering a 5 year old wasn’t the easiest task, and transferring him from his chair to his bed was a challenge … but I didn’t mind. I loved that child, too.

It was during those years in Germany that Dan and I started our infertility journey … and suddenly, my biggest fear wasn’t having a handicapped child but never having a child at all. And even that was a struggle I had to give to God over and over again. Would I trust Him if I didn’t get my “heart’s desire”? Could I say with Job:

Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him. Job 13:15

God was kind, and I delivered a healthy baby boy a few months before we left Germany. My next fear then became losing a child. It was next on my list of “I could never”s. And as you may know about me, I did miscarry my 3rd child in October of 2002. And amazingly, again, God gave me grace for that day. And for the days and years that followed while I grieved someone I only met so very briefly – just for a few stunned moments in an ER bathroom.

Trials are for growth, not for bypassing.

“And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.” Is. 58:11

All those fears and “I could never” thoughts can be faced and overcome. As I have often been told and have now experienced, you may not get grace until the very moment you need it. I didn’t have grace to understand a handicapped child, infertility, a miscarriage, and so many more things until I was there. Faced with it. I have learned as Paul did in II Corinthians 12:9:

My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

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Realizations #1

BIG BIRTHDAY COMING!

In about 70 days, I will hit a milestone birthday … half a century that I’ve been on this earth, learning, growing, failing, falling, finding my way through all sorts of situations I never expected or imagined….and coming closer to knowing God.

I am not sure I will succeed so I won’t make any promises, but I’d like to document some of my realizations from the last 50 years on my blog … (just writing 50 YEARS seems to incredibly unreal!!) Some days I feel like I’m still a novice, and other days I feel 185 years old. But a lot more days now, I feel a little more settled – a little more content.

…GODLINESS WITH CONTENTMENT IS GREAT GAIN. I Timothy 6:6

All my life — from the age of about 8 when I first heard that I was a sinner and Jesus died for me, I wanted to be His. I wanted to please Him. Early in my days of growing as a Christian, I worked so so very hard to please Him. I was scared of Him in a way … He’d zap me if I messed up (at least that’s how I felt). My life was a lot of rules (or “convictions” as we called them, which I know can be taken out of context and must line with God’s Word, not man’s ideas!). But the Christian life was kind of an earned satisfaction. If God was pleased, I was rewarded. If He wasn’t, well, I was condemned.

I believed John 3:16 with all my heart, but I didn’t understand John 3:17 until much later:

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Consequences for actions – absolutely! Discipline of God for sin – as a gentle parent who does it out of His great love. But condemnation – NEVER. Because I am a Child of God – held in His Hand – never to be let go.

It is the simple song of “Jesus Loves Me” that every child who attends Sunday School learns: Jesus loves me … and now I can honestly say, “THIS I KNOW!” He loves ME. Not because I am so great … not because I am good … but simply because I am His. He loved me while I was still a sinner … while I am still a sinner. But now I am a redeemed sinner. I didn’t earn His love; He extended it to me and the world. GOD SO LOVED …

At my church recently, we have been studying the book of James : faith without works is dead. Our faith has saved us once – by grace through faith. Our faith is now being demonstrated by our works. By our daily lives … each life, each personality unique with a different piece of the Body of Christ to complete.

That is another thing I have realized and accepted (most of the time!): my role in His body is unique. I am an introvert; I prefer the sidelines. I like to quietly organize something instead of share a message in song. I may push my limits to be outgoing and friendly at church … but my preference is my pew, taking sermon notes and then slipping out of the service, contemplating my thoughts. I sometimes wonder if I would have made a good Quaker; seems like I read somewhere that they have silent services sometimes. That sounds wonderful to my brain that is easily over-stimulated by noise and information.

I am letting go of the false guilt that I am not like someone else – someone who is lauded for doing amazing things at church or work. I am letting go of imagined expectations, self-imposed rules that I can’t possibly keep. In fact, I am often forgotten by some; my name doesn’t always “ring a bell” when it is mentioned in a group. But I know the lives I am touching quietly … and God knows. That is enough.

I have spent many years feeling inadequate because I didn’t meet all the check-boxes on the list of the modern Proverbs 31 woman. (Or at least how that woman should have been in my own mind!) I am adequate because Jesus loves me. 2 Cor. 3:5-6:

Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;

Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

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Understanding (or Misunderstanding) Corona Times

I have had so many thoughts swirling in my brain lately that I’ve wanted to type out and see on the screen … maybe share with someone who might listen and understand … but I could not for the life of me remember the password to this blog.   Sometimes I think God kind of nudges me that I DO NOT have to say/type everything I am thinking (like on Facebook, etc) and He makes it impossible for me to do so.  Maybe that was the case?!

Anyway, I found where I had written down the password once upon a time.  I’d forgotten I’d done that because at one point in my life I was going to never blog again.  My life was just so uneventful and boring … Ha!  Never claim that!  Look at us now!  😉

Are you as tired as I am?  Weary?  Trying to ignore the news, and yet, we can’t ignore it.  These things that are happening around us are REAL.  Real people are dying, real people are hospitalized and on ventilators, real people are being killed in the streets in some cities, real people are feeling angry whether founded or unfounded, real people are afraid and uncertain … and it is just heavy sometimes.

I am saddened so often by the ugliness on social media in particular.  That used to be my happy place, my interaction with friends and family … and now some people have made it mean and nasty because they think they are so right and everyone else is so wrong — and I’m talking about both sides of the story!  I get it that there are strong opinions and convictions out there.  I have some of my own.

I just wish we could discuss without name calling and ugly words.  I wish we could disagree but still love each other.  Among my Christian friends who are more vocal and active on social media, I’ve observed some interesting tendencies.  There seem to be different “camps” among them.  I am not sure which one I fall into because they all kind of bug me in their own way.  I guess, like usual, I am a hermit alone in my very own camp!!

Some Christians are speaking out very strong – especially politically and about the mandates this virus has enforced upon us (Arkansas, my state, now has a governor-issued mask mandate).  I guess I am more of a peace-maker because I just wear the mask (I also work in and around a medical environment so I am used to it!) … but some are stating that the mask is the just first of rules that will lead us down a long line of other laws put upon us to control us.  I don’t understand enough about it to say that’s true- though I am leary of too much government control.  Especially upon houses of worship and in our own homes.  I don’t doubt that we are being tracking and spied on and manipulated to an extent — I mean, HELLO INTERNET!  This post right there among it!!

Others of my Christian friends are suddenly very “woke”!  They are educating me on the daily about how I am white privileged and how I need to educate myself about the injustices all around me.  They are actively participating in rallies and protests.  I can’t even begin to keep up with all the new terms I am supposed to be implementing:   individual/institutional/internalized racism, cultural appropriation and/or misappropriation, microaggression, diaspora, colonization and decolonization … and it goes on.  I guess I am too simple – but I love that I grew up in diversity thanks to the military community.  I have had dear black friends, Asian-American friends, native-American friends, and Hispanic friends  (and potentially more categories but I do NOT  ever put my friends into categories!).  I have traveled and learned about other cultures and love learning about other ethnic groups’ traditions and meals and history – to include their struggles …

Let me tell you about my own family’s struggles.  I am the grandchild of a refugee – my Oma was forced out of her home in East Prussia by the Russians due to a war that was absolutely not her fault.  She lost everything in 1943 … Is it not the same?!  I guess not, according to some.  And I really shouldn’t say too much because I don’t know enough to back up the other sides’ arguments or to understand why …

I get that in some areas and in some times a black person worries more when pulled over by a policeman if they will be profiled and assumed guilty.  I never have to fear police because I am white.  Again, I don’t know anything about it … but I am baffled that building are torn down, stores are looted, and people are hurting and killing each other over this.

I am baffled that professional SPORTS – something that is supposed to be recreation and fun – is forcing us to choose sides and judging our motives if we choose not to participate in the movements of the day.  😦 And don’t start me on the actors and singers who are pushing agendas … Hollywood is pretty much dead to me.

But to ground myself – I know that GOD knows.  He sees all this and all the people – good and evil and misguided and seeking and sincere and struggling.  Sometimes I wish I were more like my vocal friends who are boldly stating what the BIBLE says, what GOD says….what our TRUE American history proves.  They are reminding us that “Blue Lives Matter” too – so many noble and honest and good LEOs out there!  And one issue on whose bandwagon I can hop on is that “CHILD LIVES MATTER”.  That includes not only the pre-born but the thousands who are being trafficked today.

“It’s really critical that organizations think about trafficking when they’re responding to all crises.  Obviously coronavirus is an enormous challenge for the entire global community, but trafficking is such a big issue. We need to do a lot more.”   ~~Samantha McCormack, the Global Protection Cluster’s legal specialist on trafficking in persons. (link to source)

We might think that human trafficking and s-x trafficking is a problem in Washington DC, Las Vegas, Orlando, or Atlanta – and of course, in foreign countries, particularly India or Thailand … but it is everywhere.  Here is a recent report from my home-area of NW Arkansas:
Increased Human Trafficking during Pandemic as reported from Hub of Hope  who provide victim support and services in our area.

BOTTOM LINE (at least for now and so I can conclude this very long post):

For me, today I have to reach back to a verse I reach for often:  Proverbs 3:5- TRUST in the LORD with all your heart … and LEAN NOT to your own understanding …

Because obviously, my understanding is limited – but I trust God has this all under control.  Because I don’t know anyone else who really does!

 

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Hodge Podge 5/27/20

Joining Joyce for HodgePodge as it seems to keep my blog going and my thoughts flowing … 🙂

 

1. The US of A celebrated Memorial Day this past Monday. Does your family have any military ties? If so, tell us about them.

My dad is a retired and disabled veteran … he met my mom while stationed in Germany.  He started out in the Air Force but switched to the Army to become a warrant officer.

My husband got an ROTC scholarship out of college and was obligated to serve 4 years active duty with the Army … which turned into 6 years so we could do a tour in Germany … which turned into 10 years so we could have babies … which turned into 13 years and a deployment to Iraq from 2003-04.  There was some intent to join the Reserves or National Guard after that, but it just never worked out so that was the end of his career.  It did give us the opportunity to be stationed on both coasts and in between plus Germany!!  I miss it.  

I have a brother and 3 brothers-in-law who have served in the military as well.  

2. Cole slaw, potato salad, baked beans, potato chips, mac and cheese, macaroni salad…your favorite BBQ side? How many of these do you make from scratch vs. buying from the deli?

I love all the sides.  I can make a decent cole slaw, I’ve made potato salad and mac-n-cheese before too, but honestly, I prefer those pre-made. 

3.  I enjoyed asking this question back when the Hodgepodge was a regular thing…Lake Superior State University posts a list each year of words they think should be banished from the Queen’s English for misuse, overuse, and/or general uselessness. The 2020 list includes-quid pro quo, artisanal, curated, influencer, literally, I mean, living my best life, mouthful (word used by foodies to describe texture of food in their mouth), chirp (basically an insult, you can read more on the website), jelly (short for jealous), totes (short for totally), vibe, and OK Boomer (internet response from millenial to older generation).

Of the words/phrases listed which would you most like to see ‘banned’?

May I list several??!  I am so tired of influencers who are trying to – well – influence me.  Maybe not so much the product influencers although I guess I’m just jealous they can earn so much money on products I can’t even afford?!?!?  But don’t get me started on stars and musicians who think they are influencers … but then again, maybe I’m just a cranky, old lady?!  I don’t need THEM telling me what to think.  😉 

4. I’m sure next year’s list will be filled with words springing out of this weird season we’re all in currently. What word or phrase associated with the Corona would you be happy to hear less often?

I still don’t mind hearing “flatten the curve” too much; I think that will be a phrase that sticks around.  BUT I will be glad when that darn curve is FINALLY flat already!!  

5.  The month of May wraps up in just a few days. Bid her adieu in ten words or less.

It wasn’t as fun as May usually is. 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Summer is coming … what will it hold?  Will we be able to travel at all?  Will we want to?  A family reunion for my in-law’s 60th anniversary planned for June has already pretty much fallen apart despite the fact that it has been on the agenda for at least a year or more!  It is somewhat of a disappointment, but I haven’t the energy to really be that upset.  There will be a few brave souls gathering (my family included), but I don’t even foresee seeing my in-laws that much as they are among the more medically vulnerable and are still staying home.  I also miss my own parents very much – but they live 700 miles away, and I have no idea how my summer will go with my “essential” and short-staff work place.  It is really rather frustrating and sad…. 

But not to end on a discouraged note:  I am sure we WILL make the best of the summer we are given.  🙂  

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What’s New?

Well, if you came here expecting to hear something exciting …

You came to the right place.  😉

No, nothing is new in MY life … I’m still working, (one more week of) home-schooling, and trying to wrap my head around social distancing and the future.

My children, however, have spent the last however-many weeks at home, quarantined.  Considering we are all home-bodies, I don’t think they’ve minded one bit.  And in this time, my daughter Anna has finished her first novel, which she is working on self-publishing through Amazon!

I recently read her book and edited it a little.  It is contemporary Christian fiction.  And honestly, I loved it – and not just because I love her … but it really was fun to read.  Granted, most of the characters have a Hallmark-movie type life, and I teased her a little because none of the main characters had a job!!   (but there are reasons why:  the main young lady character is a teacher and the book took place in summer; the main man just finished veterinary school and was looking to establish his practice and lived with/near family).  But I enjoyed the escape into a small (made-up) town somewhere in Northwestern Arkansas and meeting all the members of the Hayes Family and their friends.

Anyway … I found my daughter has a knack for writing dialogue.  It was witty and real and flowed.  I could envision her characters – although I will warn you, there are a lot of them!  Everyone seems to have a big family in this book!

So, if you are curious and want to support a young writer, check out my daughter on Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/annacatherineauthor/

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PS  Her book’s title will be DANDELION WISHES (although that is a spoiler … she hasn’t officially announced the title to the world yet!).

 

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Corona Daze

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How long have we been doing this quarantine thing?   Mim’s school closed March 16, and that’s been about 7 weeks ago.

I am living my dream – home-schooling — except I’m still paying tuition – and we do our school time in the afternoons after I’ve been at work for 6-7 hours!  Not ideal, but thankfully, the lesson plans are well prepared, and the teachers have made Youtube videos for new concepts in Language and Math.

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Overall, my life hasn’t changed as much as some people’s … but being an “essential employee” has its stressful moments.  We are short staffed due to various reasons, and I am tired at the end of my work days.  However, the one thing I’ve really found some peace in is the nearby park, probably less than 1/4 mile from our house.  We can walk there and then enjoy the paths and trails.

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The weather has been really nice the last few days – after a vicious hail storm a few afternoons ago that brought down gigantic, jagged hailstones.  It was crazy!

Another thing that has kind of snuck up on us during this time is that Andrew has completed his Senior year of college and finals are now OVER for him!!  He officially has a Bachelor of Science degree in International Business (Information Systems) and a minor in German!!  HE IS A COLLEGE GRADUATE!!!  His ceremony would have been this weekend – but we are having a quiet BBQ in his honor with perhaps a friend or two.

One thing about Arkansas which I am actually super thankful for now (at first, I wasn’t so sure!) is that we have not been mandated to stay at home.   That said, people around here really seem to be keeping their distances and abiding by the 6 ft rules and such like.   We have toilet paper again … and I got a variety pack of frozen meats from our local meat market (as I fear meat may be the next hoarded item??).  We really haven’t bought any more food or toiletries than we normally do.  But I don’t feel any panic for lack of anything …

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We live in Washington County in Northwest Arkansas.   The Little Rock area has been worst hit (Pulaski County).  Here, we have a lot of people (population) – however, we live spread out over 4 main cities and much of our area is still rural.

This information isn’t exciting … but I just wanted to document our pandemic days.  It is definitely strange times.

 

 

 

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HodgePodge 4/15/20

1. In Monday’s post I mentioned I would incorporate the word I was given for letter K into this week’s questions. That word was karaoke. On a scale of 1-10 how excited would you be to find out there was karaoke happening at your next gathering/outing with friends? 10=gimme that microphone!, and 1=I suddenly remembered there’s somewhere else I need to be. Have you ever actually done karaoke? If you had to perform karaoke what would be your ‘go-to’song?

Definitely a very adamant 1 – there is NO WAY I could sing in front of people, not even if it was karaoke and it was expected to be potentially horrible.  My days of any attempt of being in front of people (period.) are over.  I embrace my introvertness – and give up completely on forcing myself to get up there and speak –  even if I am imagining everyone in their underwear … still doesn’t help!!

2. How do you listen to music these days? Favorite app or do you listen the old fashioned way? Do you have music playing often in your home? Is there still a CD player in your car?

I actually don’t like music in the background too often or even having the TV on “just for noise”.  However, because my husband does, we have such a variety of music going whenever he is around – we have everything from records (yes, with a record player) to CDs to the radio.  We have yet to embrace any satellite music stations.

At work, I do listen to Pandora online.  My kids swear by Spotify.  And yes, my car has a CD player in it … and my husband’s 1996 Buick that he drives to work has a TAPE PLAYER in it!!  🙂

3. The HP lands on US tax day this year. Or what used to be tax day before everything including filing your taxes was cancelled, delayed, postponed or extended. FYI- filing your taxes has not been cancelled, only delayed for a bit.

Besides staying away from anyone and everyone, what have you found taxing lately?

I know so many people feel “stuck” at home (which truly is SAFE at home), but I find it terribly taxing to still be going to work daily.  I know I’ve complained enough – but carrying our little medical supply business short-staffed plus coming home to “home-school” is very taxing at this point, despite my boss’s every effort to make it worth my while.  I saw a meme recently that said something to the effect of:  “When the quarantine is over, can the rest of you all run things while the essential workers stay home for a month?”   I couldn’t agree more!

4. You’re without power so no oven, and you can’t open your frig or freezer in order to keep what’s in there from spoiling. And you don’t have access to take out. What will you make us for dinner?

I’m thinking you’ll get a PB&J sandwich … with some chips and an apple.

5.  I’ve seen this exercise going around Facebook and thought it would be a good one to include in the HP…what are five things everybody seems to love and go crazy for that you personally don’t care for?

  1.  avocados  (I have tried to like this “good fat” but I just don’t).  2.  Starbucks  3.  knitting/crocheting  4.  Crossfit  5.  so many celebrities right now who think they are “influencers”

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

The only celebrity I can stomach right now is John Krasinski’s SGN (Some Good News) podcasts:  There are 3 episodes now, I believe.  Here is #1

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HodgePodge 4/8/2020

 

1. How will you celebrate Easter this year?

It’s Wednesday … and I still haven’t figured it out yet.  Of course, we will remember the significance of the day – HE IS RISEN!  But as for a fancy meal or Easter baskets … I guess I’d better get on it!

2. Is it easier for you to receive grace offered or extend grace to another? Explain.

I am not sure if it just the way I grew up or if I’m just super hard on myself — but I have a very hard time accepting grace.  I don’t extend myself very much grace at all.  I’m working on it … See my post from just last week:  QUARANTINE GRACE

I do like to think I am able to extend grace far easier than I accept it.

3. Do you say grace before meals? If so do you have a standard dinnertime grace or is it more ‘off the cuff’ ? Do you say grace when dining out? Do you have a favorite grace? Any special memory associated with ‘saying grace’?

I grew up saying “grace” over meals … at home and in public.  My husband and I still do.  At home and in public.  It’s just a natural part of a meal as it putting a napkin on your lap before you begin.  I guess you might say we “pray” over our meal more than say a specific grace prayer.

I do have a memory:  I attended public school in Kindgergarten in 1974.  I still remember that before our snack we said “grace”:  God is great, God is good.  Let us thank Him for our food.  As a Christian, I am thankful I still grew up with that memory from my school time.

4. What are some challenges you think the next generation will face? (Generation Alpha-born between 2011 and 2025)

I can’t even fathom some of the challenges this generation will face.  They will have no memory of “pre-electronics” like even my young adult children have because we didn’t really get into video games until they were late elementary school – and internet wasn’t something they used until maybe junior high/high school.  My older 2 kids didn’t get cell phones til age 15 or 16 … and now my 10 year old’s friends have them!!  My 10 year old does NOT have one – but she does have a tablet.

This coming generation has instant gratification for everything.  Or at least, they have access to it if it is allowed.  Just a watch a kid when the WiFi is slow … or they can’t get a signal on their phone.  I hope parents will still instill waiting, patience, and especially gratitude for all we have.

5. Share a favorite quote or lyric featuring the word faith.

Having grown up in church, songs of faith are not lacking in my memory!

Faith is the Victory!

My Faith Has Found a Resting Place … not in device or creed.  I trust the ever-living One; His wounds for me will plead.

Faith of Our Fathers

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

I have not had a real day off work since October.  Granted, I went to Germany twice in 2019 -and was gone my fair share – but since I got back, I have worked through the holidays (aside from the actual day), through federal holidays that my husband gets off that I don’t, through “Spring Break” where again my husband and kids were off but I wasn’t … and I am still working through this corona virus quarantine as I work in medical supplies.  But yesterday (Tuesday), I finally crashed.  Hard.  And I asked for a personal day off … and I stayed home.  And it was glorious and much needed.

I know some of you all are getting very weary of being home … but I am getting very weary of NOT being home.  I am not saying that for praise or sympathy or any other reason other than stating a fact of how I am getting through this “pandemic”.  We all have our own struggles in this … I think we all have to do our part with care – whether it is working or staying home.  But as we were reminded above:  we need to give ourselves a little grace along the way.

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