Thursday Things

It has been another busy but slow day. Had another dentist appointment. It was just too hard to get going after that. Unsure why. Then I realized. I saw an article discussing the feelings adults have when too many emotional things (all bad) happen – our bodies make us feel tired. We feel like we have to retreat. It’s a safeguard for our mental health.

Some folks would declare that as bunk; I do not. I told the Babe while we were at lunch, I just wanted to go home and cuddle with the dog, hiding under the covers, and stay there. No particular reason; (except it’s the 907th day in a row with clouds, rain, chills; spring in Nebraska). After seeing that article, I believe the mental health safeguard is true. Yes, it’s far from us, but we are involved. And we should be glad it affects us and distracts us. It means our hearts are still working as they should be; it means we care deeply about humanity. I’m glad to know that. Sometimes I am concerned I have become so used to terrible things happening I’ve become jaded or calloused. Happy to report, I’m not.

Tomorrow, I’m sitting down with my illustrations and book, and inserting them. It will help me kick-start my momentum again. Hoping over the weekend I can open that new box of my sewing machine and set it up. Might have to reconfigure the glass-topped desk I use to double as a sewing table. That would force me to clean up the area after writing, sewing, working on my book, etc. It would keep things more orderly, like I used to. I fell into the bad habit of leaving the sewing machine open, with the project out, and things look very messy. Let’s see how it goes. Whatever it takes to get more done in less time.

Tomorrow, we will spend more time looking at the children’s book. I’ll see you tomorrow!

Thursday Throes?

Words truly fascinate me. They should. Trying to come up with catchy titles is challenging. Some days, I try to think of a word starting with the same letter as the day of the week. Throes. What are throes? Something this day doesn’t need; pain, agony, suffering, or threats. No, we don’t need that at all.

The people of the Ukraine are experiencing it right now. I admire their President very much; he and his family are truly Presidential in their actions, example, and love of their country. I can think of no one who dislikes the man. No wonder their men are picking up arms to defend their country. Patriots abound.

The people who suffer the most? The babies and children. To experience that trauma so young will leave marks on them for their entire lives. Children from Iraq, Afghanistan, all the European countries from WWII, WWI, Japan, the Philippines, and others all have carried this, whether they believe it. So they subconsciously hold so much. War causes so much more than physical damage, destruction, and unseen emotional scars.

Life can do that to us, too. Sometimes we think we are so smart because we don’t talk about hurt and wounds. We think if we don’t admit things out loud; they don’t exist. We’ve all done it. And the truth of the matter? We’re not fooling anyone. Especially not ourselves. Why do we do this?

Well, I saw it growing up. The thoughts on teenage drinking at the time was, “Well, at least it’s not drugs” followed by, “Boys will boys.” I believe those thoughts lead to nothing but disaster. Car loads of kids, male and female, killed every year because of that thinking. The thinking it’s “only” drinking. No such thing.

In high school, I didn’t hang out with girls who drank or smoked. At least, not that I knew of. I didn’t really know my older brother drank as much as he did. They did not discuss it. Imagine my surprise when I found out. There again, I didn’t know the extent of it. It seemed all the boys did it. That didn’t make it right.

Instead, I stuck to the straight and narrow. I wanted to be so good that Mom would praise me, be happy about my behavior, and become happier about everything. It was hard having a brother a year older than me. I wanted to be as smart as he was. I didn’t realize I was until I was much older. And in different things.

You know, back in our days, the worst thing that could happen to a family was to have an unmarried girl become pregnant. It happened now and again. All I can say is it probably had the chance of happening more than it did. Many of us didn’t get caught. People assumed I got married because I was pregnant. Nope. I was just lucky, as were all of my friends.

Fast forward 50 years and nearly everyone lives together before marriage now. I think it’s a great idea. No longer does it reflect badly on a couple (especially the woman). Many couples have toddlers who take part in the wedding itself. It’s a family affair. My revelation doesn’t shock anyone. We have the advantage of knowing our partners better than 50 years ago.

So while my revelation doesn’t shock anyone, it would have 50 years ago. Time has a way of doing all of that. What doesn’t change is please be careful celebrating St. Pat’s Day. Safety first. I’m not impressed by drinking escapades, and shake my head at some stories I hear even now. It’s not worth it. Please be careful so we can see each other tomorrow.

Today’s Concerns-Really?

As I watched the news yesterday morning, I realized how shallow we seem to the rest of the world. My heart breaks looking at the refugee children, crying and holding a stuffed animal while standing next to their mothers on the trains to Poland. The rubble from civilian office buildings is a daily image. It generates a real punch in the gut daily.

The next “newsy” blurb lasted longer than the reporting on the crisis in the Ukraine. That blurb subject was about the maternity wardrobe of singer Rhianna. Excuse me? Wardrobe? It seemed to me it was simply a bunch of narrow ribbons draped over her belly with no actual structure in mind. It strikes me it is pure sensationalism and attention seeking. I’m no prude and I have to ask, “Is nothing sacred anymore?”

And don’t get me started on today’s story about the effect of TikTok on young teens’ mental health. Some of us are raising kids to be emotionally immature and too sheltered. They are used to their parents doing too much for them, some are the center of attention in their homes, and their mere existence trumps the marriage as the primary relationship in the home. Google John Rosemond and read. He makes some interesting points. I believe children should be heard, listened to, valued, and know the world doesn’t revolve around them.

Not sorry America, I think the world events are much more important than a celebrity’s baby bump, TikTok, and the new music tour of New Kids on the Block. Sorry, guys.

Pat Sloan wrote an article. I’ve followed her for several years. I like her style, her heart, and her way of honoring people. The quilters of the world are acting. A quilting leader in the Ukraine is heading up the efforts to evacuate the children from Ukraine to Poland. The woman has a quilt shop in both countries. Often, quilts are made for refugees and given to them. After the tsunami in Japan a few years ago, another group of quilters asked for donations of a certain type of block, and led the efforts to sew the blocks into quilt tops, then layer, quilt, and bind them. They went to Japan and into the hands of people who lost everything. I was a good feeling, knowing the blocks helped people.

Pat Sloan designed a block representing the Ukraine, in signature blue, yellow, and white. She explains the symbolism of the double star, representing the strength of the Ukrainian people. For your listening and hopefully action, here is my quilter friend, Pat Sloan, with a call to action; let’s make a difference for the refugee children of the Ukraine. The link takes you to the video. Below the video is a link to download your pattern. There is also information about donating to this special UNICEF fund. Let’s do something we are assured will make a difference for 7.5 million children. When I make the block, I’m putting it on our front door. How about you?

There is a lot to do today! I’d better get to it, and organize my thoughts for the rest of the day. Thank you for listening to my rant, and I pray it spurs it prompts all of us to help those children. Children deserve better. They deserve security, love, constancy. Let’s help provide some of that. Blessings. See you tomorrow!

Back in My Office/Studio

I had a meeting with Lexie, head of security, and Goldie, head of publicity, and the three of us agreed it’s been fun working from the couch or loveseat these past three months. I enjoyed the break, and it slowed my work too much to continue that pattern. Time to get back to it. The Babe is going to work from home, too. It will lessen the interruptions he has while he’s working at the Post’s office for the Quartermaster. It’ll get me back on track. I need that at this point.

While being on this self-imposed break, I’ve had a lot of time to think about many things. About growing up in South Omaha, our very blue-collar neighborhood, the work ethic we had, and that most people attended a Church. It was rare to find someone who just didn’t attend. I think this had a lot to do with keeping Sunday sacred, a family day, and helped us keep better connected.

The Babe’s sister Cindy and brother-in-law Brad have instituted Sunday dinners for their family. I love this idea! They have a standing date with family. It would be impossible for our family in town. Frankie works on Sunday, and Tracy and TJ & kids are usually in extra-curricular activities. Tracy is also the one who waits until last minute to prepare for anything, so it just wouldn’t work. And that’s ok. The Babe and I love to spend the day sipping lemonade or water on the deck and patio just talking about anything and everything. It’s so nice. Simple.

So our grandkids won’t have the memories we have, with Sunday visits, summer sleep-overs, and special impromptu events. They will have different ones. As long as they have some, I’m good with that. Too many kids don’t live in the same city as their grandparents. Sad. I’m sad we don’t see Becky’s kids or Blake’s son as much as we see the others. But that is how life is now. There just isn’t enough time.

In life, the Babe is not comfortable traveling anymore. Since COVID and with his repeated cardiovascular issues because of Agent Orange, he doesn’t want to be away from home, his dogs, and his doctors. I have to respect that. Nothing is as good as your own bed, your own coffee pot, and your own routine. I love our home, and I love who I share it with.

It’s fun to see photos of everyone’s adventures on the warm beaches of Florida or Mexico during this cold February. I can live vicariously through the adventurers we know. We have a friend who has hiked both the Appalachian Trail AND the Pacific Northwest Trail. Of course, he had a double knee replacement in between the two walks. And a heart attack. I wonder if he takes many long walks now?

I’m off to take some Tylenol. The elusive temporary crown is holding well, and today it’s pretty painful. Not sure why. It’ll be fine, I’m sure. The sun is beautiful, but freezing. Make it a beautiful day. I enjoy being back in my office chair. It’s comfy. I love looking out the window again. This’ll work. See you tomorrow!

Thursday Things

I’ve been pretty slow about getting around to things today. Did some straightening up, cleaning up, planning about the ranch and got back to the blog before I get too lazy. The frigid temperatures don’t make it conducive to productivity. Binge watching is more like it. We have little snow in the greater Gretna area today.

The people who are in the Ukraine are in my prayers today. It’s always the poor people who suffer in the sanctions, the diplomacy (or lack thereof), and the calamity that follows. Being a Cold War kid, I have never trusted Putin. Russian people have suffered my entire life no matter who the ruler was. Khrushchev vowed to bury us. He made that promise to bury America after digging a grave for us. He was positive that would happen. There are those who believe that is happening.

The people of Cuba have also suffered a terrible economy because of communism, socialism, and being ruled by Castro. The corrupt rulers lived lavish lives while the people suffered. That was the story behind Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Germany, Italy, during all the wars known to us. And so it goes. Persecution of innocents, wrath of ungodly, and suffering of the people.

The modern worst part? If a cyber attack happens, it will be devastating. Talk of interrupting the cable communication running across the ocean floor is a possibility. Millions of transactions take place every day, and if interrupted, could cause financial chaos for many.

The spirit of good and just people must win. It must always defeat the enemy, no matter the foe. Stories of survivors at Auschwitz continue to leave people speechless. No food, water, medicine, and severe treatment, and yet they survived? It is the human spirit. Along with the intervention of God. There are those who would say, “If there were a god, it would not have allowed that to happen.” Wrong. The evil in humankind manifested itself in Nazi Germany. I shudder to think anyone else could cause such a genocide as stormed upon the Jews.

Harsh realities occur during our lives, and many of them are brutal. Our military serves to protect us from harm. I feel safe while they are at their posts. Our grandchildren are safe to take part in dance, cheer, baseball, basketball, and play at daycare in our great country. I shudder to think of them needing to take shelter from bombings. Our adult kids becoming refugees to seek haven in another country is unheard of. The Babe and I being murdered because we’re too old boggles my mind.

I will never understand the cause of evil in the world. I will probably not trust Russia; it’s not the people, it’s the ruler. The threats of sanctions? How long will it take? I do not know. I hope those in power know what they’re doing. In the meantime? I plan on being here tomorrow. I hope you do too. Take care. Be grateful.