Life Is Hard Sometimes.

And it’s not fair a lot of the time. And it’s hard to not fall into negative thinking. Especially when you see someone fall ill with a horrible disease called ALS. My friends Janet and Don are traveling this road since Janet was diagnosed a few years ago. In the past month and a half, her condition has worsened dramatically, which is hard to see.

She and Don have been married over 50 years, and have three children. I’ve been friends with them since my first marriage, and that was so long ago. We’ve kept in touch and remained friends all these years. It’s so hard to see this horrible thing happen to such good people. They both worked hard, fulfilled their obligations, went to Church, and would give you the shirts off their backs. Good, salt of the earth blue collar people.

Janet still remembers people, and has a winning smile that warms your heart. Her talking is limited, and you can tell she’s thinking. Don still teases the heck out of her, but is serious when it’s warranted. It’s a great example of commitment. He’s pretty modest about it, and brushes it off as what everybody is supposed to do. Lots of people would turn tail and run. Or be angry. No time for that. Don’s goal is to keep Janet comfortable for as long as possible. It’s just what she would do for him if the situation was reversed.

Sobering as this is, it is still hard to see such good people hurt by this. The disease can happen to anyone; it can be genetic or environmental or neither; it can begin early or later; it robs the patient of dignity for sure. How it selects it’s victims I don’t know. How it hurts the family shows in their tired eyes, their slumped shoulders. They carry on, they go throughout the days, one the same of the next. Their exhaustion grows.

All I can do is continue to visit and break up their days; they have so many friends to visit. Janet deserves that. She has always been a good friend to others and it’s beautiful to see the folks coming to visit her today. She deserves this. Don deserves this, too. Visiting will continue, no matter how long she has left. With the decline in the last three weeks, it’s anybody’s guess.

The other thing, I can pray for comfort for Janet, and strength for Don’s soul. And continue to visit. When all else fails, give the gift of your time. It’s the least we can do. Take care of each other. Keep each other safe. We are all on borrowed time. Love one another while we can.

And let’s care about what really matters. It’s not the Kardashians, Depp v Heard, or TikTok. It’s people and love and promises kept. It’s families and grandchildren. Learn what’s important, and hold it near to you. Have a beautiful evening. See you tomorrow.

Thursday Thinking

It’s just the 27th day of the first month of the year. We already know of two people, lifelong friends, who will not be with us at the end of the year. It’s hard to learn that so early into this new year, especially after four significant losses last year.

The advantage to such advance notice is you get to say your good byes. You get to make visits and let them know what they mean to us. Sometimes, you see your loved ones health and body diminishes before your eyes. They are still there. Their minds are still as active as ever. They certainly deserve the respect you’ve always given them. And their spirits hopefully stay as vigorous as ever. They’re entitled to be sad, to be angry, and to be a little grumpy from time to time.

We are all going to meet our endings sometime. Some sooner than later. Others will be here a long time. It’s always too soon. Even when you expect the loss, it’s still a shock when it actually happens. Only God knows when our time on earth is up. There is an old Tim McGraw song, “Live Like You Were Dying.” We should all do that every day.

Why? We would enjoy ourselves much more while truly living. I have a friend who is turning 50 this year. She has vowed to do something different every month for the year. Different things she’s always been interested in doing, but has never tried. How fun! It’s great to try new things; keeping an open mind will help keep the mind working. Your world is bigger. Life is more interesting.

I’m lost in thought about our friends, and wondering about our other friend who just passed away; his remains are coming to Omaha for burial, I’m wondering when that may be. We are hoping for closure. Meantime, just keep this in mind:

Six Ethics of Life

Before you Pray – Believe

Before you Speak – Listen

Before you Spend – Earn

Before you Write – Think

Before you Quit – Try

Before you Die – Live

Make sure you hold your people close. Be careful out there, and we’ll see each other tomorrow.

Thoughtful Thursday

I noticed a mistake or two in last night’s late blog. I corrected and re-published. Having the newspaper blood in our veins, my brothers and I don’t like to see typos or obvious errors identifying people in photos. I am not perfect. And I’ll always try to correct my mistakes. We should give ourselves do-overs.

I read another thoughtful meditation this morning. “Would you rather be right or be happy?”

WOAH! What was that again? That could stop any argument in its tracks, wouldn’t it?? The article, written by Michael Easter, and is featured in Medium today. I found it fascinating. Most of the time we’re not right, we just want to “win.” What drives the human mind is odd. He points out time changes our position on ideas and things we “would die to keep.” The next day we could gladly give up what we didn’t die for the day before. It is definitely food for thought.

The Babe and I have a few disagreements now and then, we’re human. We’ve also reached a point in life where we know there are not a lot of things to argue about. We’d rather be happy. It’s something I’d suggest to everyone. You don’t always have to win or lose.

Interestingly enough, the meditation in my book was a quote from Voltaire. “Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.” Instead of praying to God to spare you from pain, ask Him for strength to get through the pain, whatever it is, and to gain a better understanding of our lives.

The sun is finally shining today. It’s chillier than it’s been, but the blue sky is so welcome. I believe it brightens everyone’s mood and helps restore our collective sanity. Doom and gloom hammers away at a person’s mood.  I have to check myself. A little self-care to maintain an even keel is worth it. Awareness is crucial in our world. We don’t live in a vacuum. Our interactions with others, however small they are, affect other people. An unexpected smile is worth a lot. Share one of yours!

Time to work on our VFW Post 2503 website. We had a terrific St. Patrick’s Day Dinner yesterday and a good time was had by all. People enjoy seeing events posted. I’d better get busy so the news is current! Thank you for reading today. I appreciate your time. I’ll see you tomorrow! Be Safe out there. Be Kind. We all need it. And Be Courteous. The world needs it.

Suddenly It’s Sunday Again!

Wow! What a week! It’s been the longest short week I’ve had for quite a long time. It was a great one, though. How about for all of you? I hope you’re all well and able to enjoy this beautiful Sunday, wherever you are.

The Babe and I had a big list of stuff to do this week. Probably 75% of it was done. But even at that, washing windows was not in the cards with all the much needed rain. Probably this week. I once had a house with 36 windows. They were old, cheap combination windows I cleaned twice a year. What a job! Now, instead of having to take the parts out, I can take out the screens, and use a product that hooks to your garden hose. You can clean the window, switch the product off, then rinse. Five minutes, then give the screen a shot of suds and rinsing, it’s all clean and ready to put back in when dry. Since we have a ranch style home, you can squeedge the water off or dry with a cloth. You can see again!

We went to the Post this morning for the first Sunday breakfast in a long time, and we enjoyed a good meal for $8. They did well, and it shuts down at Noon. We had breakfasts once a month for quite awhile, then stopped because not a lot of people were coming up, and that was before COVID. Good call to start them again. A new group of helpers makes the work go well.

Today, I will put the finishing touches on my stories of origin. It’s been a fun project and I’ve learned a lot. This has also been the week to unveil the new VFW Post 2503 website. The Babe’s brother in law Brad is a web designer, among other things, and he put it together for us. I’ve learned a lot more about WordPress this week, so that time has been so worth it. It’s been a fun as well as frustrating week. My stubbornness has kept me from calling him for help in figuring things out. Some things I still needed help with, but it took me back to my working days and the triumph of trouble shooting problems. A victory when you figure stuff out, for sure.

There will be a learning curve to keep going, and it’s ok. I’ve actually improved my website too, in case you didn’t notice. The new “Home” page has a bit about me and my headshot. I’ll need a new one since my COVID hair has grown almost shoulder length. I decided to keep the hair. I’ve missed it. I’ve had long hair most of my life, it’s sort of a signature. So what if it’s gray. No one cares anymore. Part of my brand, actually. “It’s Not Too Late, and I’m Not Too Old.”

The newest blog for the day is under “Today’s Blog” and a collection of all my blogs is available on the “Blogs at a Glance” page. There is a page to “Contact” me, and I’d sure like my followers to fill that out. I’ll keep e-mails to a minimum when they start, trust me! I haven’t published yet, but I’ll have your contact information for when I need it. I’d appreciate your help with that.

The other thing you could do under comments, is suggest a topic for the daily blog. If there is some part of writing you have questions about, I’d be glad to try and answer them. You’ll be helping me a great deal.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on

I have to say, I’m scouring the free photo sites and looking for typewriter photos. I marvel at how big they are now. I hated typing on an old manual typewriter, the very old kind, because I had to address envelopes for advertising. The darned shift hold wasn’t in too good of shape, so it would type off center of the line. Arghhh! Had to throw them away, the boss wouldn’t let me erase it and white out hadn’t been invented yet. It was embarrassing!

I have to say, owning one of these typewriters would be fun for messing around, but I’m personally very happy with the ease of computer software. It’s awesome. Easy to correct. I don’t know how many words I can type, but wow, it’s way better than the hunt and peck method most people seem to use now. I cannot imagine typing an entire 80K novel using the hunt and peck method!

Photo by Logan Fisher on

I love these Aspen trees in Colorado. This is the perfect time of year out there. Well, summer can be, too. I have never been there in the snow, or a blizzard, so I can’t speak to that. Our daughter Becky moved there in 2001, and it’s our favorite place to go, even before she lived there.

This afternoon will be spent re-reading my character origin stories, and maybe actually reading a book for pleasure. The deck is just perfect right now, so I plan to enjoy it. How will you spend your day?

Thank you for spending part of it with me. I’ll be here again tomorrow, and I hope to see you, too. Have hope in your hearts, we all need it now more than ever. Be Kind. Be Courteous. Be Safe. And definitely, Be Aware of all around you.