Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Fleeting

I’ve never been a fan of the amaryllis. My idea of a flowering plant is a plant that has both flowers which bloom periodically and leafy foliage which it maintains year-round. The only amaryllis plants I’ve seen grow tall stalks, break out in flowers after a couple weeks and then wilt and die.

I found it humorous that the websites I found which talked about the amaryllis claim that it is easy to care for. The directions sounded rather convoluted to me. And the payback seems to be little.

My mom, however, loved the amaryllis and seemed to get one frequently for Christmas. She thrived on the anticipation of watching it grow on a daily basis, waiting for the flowers to bloom. And then it was over.

Granted the flowers are beautiful, but I’m always left asking, what now? But maybe that’s part of the beauty. That it was fleeting. That it would be there one day and gone the next. 

Hard for me to believe that it was only a few weeks ago, when I spent an entire weekend at Mom’s, that her amaryllis went from this...
 
 to this ...
 to this in only a day.
Two days later, it was gone. And so was Mom. 
Maybe that was all part of the plan. 

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Returning to the Land of the Living

 I remain confident of this:
    I will see the goodness of the Lord
    in the land of the living.
 Wait for the Lord;
    be strong and take heart
    and wait for the Lord.
Psalm 27:13-14New International Version (NIV)

If you read my last blog post – okay, it was the one that my dog wrote a week ago – you know that my mom passed away on February 15. As Dino mentioned, Mom was at our house for dinner on January 15 and the very next day her health began to plummet.

I’ve had a lot going on since then. Reading back over my blog posts since that day, it may or may not have been easy to pick up on my struggles and my stress. I plowed through each day and each turn of the corner for Mom, the ups and downs.

Though not evident in this particular post, what got me through was journaling. I spent four nights and the majority of four days with Mom near the end, and when she was asleep I had my trusty laptop in my lap, my fingers flying over the keys. Thoughts and feelings that I wanted to capture in those moments, but not necessarily share, at least not in the immediate future.

In the file where I write these posts, I have a short list of Bible verses to pull from when nothing comes to mind. The above verse was one of them. God is good. He gives me – He gives all of us – what we need when we need it.

And now, it is time for me to return to the land of the living, always remembering Mom, but turning my attention to what lies ahead.

Lord, God, thank You for every breath we take on this earth and thank You for the promise of eternal life so we will always be in the land of the living. Amen
My mom's favorite picture of her and Dad, 
and the only one she gave me permission to share at her funeral. 

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Dino saves the day

It’s Dino here, helping Mom out. She feels really bad that she hasn’t blogged in so long. Ok, it’s really only been a week, but to her it feels like so much longer and she has enough on her plate that she doesn’t need to feel guilty about something so little.

So, here’s the deal. Mom’s mom, Granma Loehmer, died Wednesday night. The last time I saw Granma was on January 15. She came over for dinner and had a really good visit and I got to sit with my head on her knee coz she really liked that.

Next thing I know, Mom’s going nuts coz Granma’s in the hospital, then in the nursing home and then Mom was gone for four nights in a row, sleeping over at Granma’s. It was a mess. Poor Mom and poor Granma too. But Granma’s in a better place now, she has crossed the rainbow bridge and is with Mac, the dog they had forever ago, when Mom was just a kid.

So that’s all for now. Just wanted to let you know what’s going on. Mom will write once she has processed everything and has gotten caught up on showering me with affection.

Dino 

Saturday, February 11, 2017

What I Know

Last week I had Psalm 23 on my mind. Today it’s this beautiful hymn. It’s a little long, but worth the read. Or skip to the video.

1. I know that my Redeemer lives;
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, He lives, who once was dead;
He lives, my ever-living Head.

2. He lives triumphant from the grave,
He lives eternally to save,
He lives all-glorious in the sky,
He lives exalted there on high.

3. He lives to bless me with His love,
He lives to plead for me above.
He lives my hungry soul to feed,
He lives to help in time of need.

4. He lives to grant me rich supply,
He lives to guide me with His eye,
He lives to comfort me when faint,
He lives to hear my soul's complaint.

5. He lives to silence all my fears,
He lives to wipe away my tears
He lives to calm my troubled heart,
He lives all blessings to impart.

6. He lives, my kind, wise, heavenly Friend,
He lives and loves me to the end;
He lives, and while He lives, I'll sing;
He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King.

7. He lives and grants me daily breath;
He lives, and I shall conquer death:
He lives my mansion to prepare;
He lives to bring me safely there.

8. He lives, all glory to His name!
He lives, my Jesus, still the same.
Oh, the sweet joy this sentence gives,
"I know that my Redeemer lives!"

(by Samuel Medley, 1738-1799)


The Youtube video may sound a little archaic, but it reminds me of Easter Sunday at my church. Ok, except for the harmony. So basically, just the trumpet. 

Friday, February 10, 2017

In Office to do What?

 I haven’t been terribly productive the last few weeks due to a myriad of issues on the home front. One tiny thing I did accomplish, however, was finally getting this framed, after it had sat on my kitchen counter for many months, since the hubby brought it home.

One thing that this proclamation doesn’t mention is that Lloyd switched from Republican to Democrat (or vice versa, I forget) at some point in his political career. Whether people agree with some of Lloyd’s policies or not, I think what says the most about the man is that he always worked for his constituents and not his party. What a change from politicians today.

Maybe if our current leaders in high places had their priorities on the people they serve instead of blindly following their party the world would actually be a better place. Maybe they need to be reminded that that is what they are in office to do.  

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

What's your "best by" date?

Some of you may remember the blog I posted in August of 2012 in which I was cleaning out my freezer. From the frost on some of those packages, it’s hard to believe that I had ever emptied the freezer. Additionally, I did have dates on some of those packages and they were from before the millennium. Oh, my.

Apparently, my kitchen cupboards aren’t in much better shape.

Just like with the deep freeze, I know that I cleaned this particular cupboard in the last – five years at least. But no, the date on each of these items declares that the “best by” date has long passed.
My question is: what exactly does “best by” date mean? Once that date has passed, can I still cook with all these spices and seasonings? And at what point do they need to be tossed?

At least the molasses was an easy call. I know it is supposed to be thick, but honestly? It was more the consistency of two day old pudding. And those bouillon cubes? Should they be as solid as a bar of gold bullion? The only thing I do know is that baking powder really does expire and will lose its power to raise (and lift and separate?), but it’s only six months past the date. It should still work, right?

-Sigh- Here I go again. And wondering if I am closing in on my own "best by" date? Or am I just getting better with age? 

Sunday, February 5, 2017

The Lord is Our Shephed

Many years ago, a few of my co-workers started a Bible study on Tuesdays at seven a.m. at the clinic. People have come and gone from the group and we’ve lately been averaging anywhere from four to ten women each week. Only myself and two other women remain from the original group.

We’ve studied books of the Bible and read other books. And some mornings we never get to any book; we spend the hour in prayer or support of each other’s needs.

The book we are reading now is “The Power of God’s Names” by Tony Evans. The chapter the group just started is “Jehovah Rohi: The Lord is My Shepherd”.  I’ve struggled with a few of the chapters, but I think I got this one.

  The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Forever.
(Psalm 23, New King James Version)
 I think a lot of us Christians have these verses from Scripture committed to memory. But don’t take them for granted; they are beautiful words which we need to take to heart.

I was going to break each verse down and give you my spin on it, but I don’t think that’s necessary. I don’t think I have anything else to add.


Lord, You are our shepherd, our guide, our protector, our provider. We would be hungry and cold and lost without you. We worship You, we praise You. We thank You. Amen