Hindsight is not always 20/20

IMG_20150103_172451138Somebody once said that hindsight is 20/20.  I don’t think so.  I think we can still be blind as a bat without some well-fitted spectacles in the form of serious contemplative wisdom. I don’t know much (at all) about physics—that’s my brother the Purdue engineer’s department.  But I’ve heard there’s something out there called Chaos Theory.  I like that term.  I sometimes feel I’m the embodiment of it.  No need to take classes on that one, just come read my autobiography, which I haven’t written yet since I’m still living it.  As I’ve said before, my life seemingly doesn’t come in “seasons”; it prefers to come in “spasms”. 

Of which I will spare you the details… Continue reading “Hindsight is not always 20/20”

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Inventory

wood 2A good friend of mine told me about the local Red Cross blood drive that was happening here in town.  I hadn’t donated blood in a L-O-N-G time, and since someone dear to me in my family had just had a transfusion, it was obviously still in my frontal lobe.  That, plus I was on summer vacation, plus I have one of the rarest blood types (B negative), so no excuses.  Drink some extra water, grab a protein bar, and I’m off.

There’s a family story about my mom back when we were kids.  She had the rarest type of blood, AB negative.  That’s always fun, since if you’re in a car wreck or some such awful thing, and you need a lifesaving transfusion, you might be in a world of hurt.  Continue reading “Inventory”

I didn’t sign up for this…(sez who??)

I have a habit of biting off more than I can chew.

Now, that’s an analogy that needs no explanation; it’s just part of our vernacular, which probably means that there are a WHOLE BUNCH of us that do it.  Frequently.  Constantly chewing and rarely swallowing between bites.

Like signing up for a 50-mile two-day bike hike when I was in high school with no serious preparation, wishing in mid-stride I could fall off and ride the rest of the way in the S.A.G. (Support And Gear) vehicle.  “SAG” is aptly named for another reason… Continue reading “I didn’t sign up for this…(sez who??)”

Tie your own shoes

Dawncartoon[1] (1)TO THIS DAY, I still have middle-schoolers walking around with their shoes untied!  Kids!  This is NOT a fashion statement, this is a HEALTH HAZARD!  You trip, then I have to take care of you!

Remember teaching your little ones to tie their shoes?  Some used the bunny ear technique.  In my house, we used the old-fashioned loop/knot design.  It all takes time and practice, but then, of course, my youngest ended up wearing flip-flops to high school in January, so why bother?

The point is that teaching self-sufficiency is a 
Continue reading “Tie your own shoes”

Or you could just peddle faster…(ha!)

picmonkey dogI really like dogs, man’s best friend and all.  But there are a few I could do without, admittedly.  Just a few.  I’m not even talking about the yappy fur balls that are a perverse progeny of wolverine descent; they have a purpose in that they make some people happy.  No, I’m simply referring to the dangerous ones out on the country roads that don’t like cyclists.

Granted, most big back-road hounds will just bark and run, and when I stop and give them treats (which I carry), we make friends with each other.  I actually used to go out to see a Great Dane—fell in LOVE with her, and she tried to get in my lap, hilarious!

However…

One winter day, as I was riding without Bob, I was accosted by a particular nasty that decided his property included the road.  So I did what my husband had taught me, getting off my bike to put it between me and my enemy. As I began to back up, the dog followed, snarling and barking, indicating he had one thing on his mind—a piece of me.  (Unfortunately, another big one had joined him on the other side of the street, so now I had tandem trouble.) Continue reading “Or you could just peddle faster…(ha!)”

More than first day jitters

wood 2This week I had my last “first” day of the kiddos returning to school.  As if that isn’t enough to make a school nurse’s hair stand on end, add to it that I work at public middle school, where hormones run rampant and drama is just a part of life.  Everything from “do you have any Super Glue for my broken [plastic, garishly painted, glamor] fingernail” to where-did-I-put-my-multi-page-child-abuse-form,…it tends to land in my office. 

I have a well-worn path to the Counseling Center, (not always just for the students, mind you.)  God bless them…lots. Continue reading “More than first day jitters”

Rear-view mirror grace

neuschwanstein-castle-467116_1280One of the (many) things I love about the Bible is the unadulterated openness of the ungodliness of some of God’s most godly people.  I really love it.  It gives me hope.  It also makes me appreciate the honesty of God as well as His patient love and affection.  Some choose to see only His anger and frustration.  Well, heck, if I had been the parent of these kids for several millennia…well, best not to go there.

Here’s another good example.  Many of us Continue reading “Rear-view mirror grace”

Hand me the wrench…no the other one.

garden lastMy brother and I were just reminiscing about coming home from school and seeing our grandfather in the heat of the day, stripped to the waist and sporting a bandana to catch the sweat dripping from his forehead, (and what was left of his grey hair), out mowing the lawn.  He and Grandma had been visiting our family, and he was not one to merely luxuriate when there was work to be done. 

And why not?  I mean, c’mon, he was only in his 70’s…

spidermanOwning property is a never-ending lifestyle, to be sure, and if you’re like Bob and I, whose only claim to fame is the ability to change a light bulb, then it becomes even more challenging.  I did try to hang wallpaper—once. (For the record, of the two of us, I tend to be the one who tries to “fix” something first, whereas my husband with all the letters behind his name doesn’t even bother….just call the plumber.)

The truth is, they—the carpenters, the plumbers, the electricians and the lot—they know that they’re doing.  I’ve seen them at work.  It’s really impressive, you know, where there was no wall, now there’s a wall, with windows and lights and paint.  Or maybe new carpet.  Or a vaulted ceiling.  And, once the tools are put away and the dust has cleared, if I do as I’m instructed to take care of it, it should all last a long time. 

Wow! 

Here the Hebrew nation is about the kick up some serious dust as they go into the Promised Land.  Moses is recapping their past few decades:

“But you have seen the LORD perform all these mighty deeds with your own eyes!  Therefore, be careful to obey every command I am giving you today, so you may have strength to go in and take over the land you are about to enter.”

I see an interesting sequence here. 

To begin with, this is addressed specifically to people who had first hand experience.  They had witnessed God’s provision and His “mighty deeds”.  With that knowledge came responsibility—

The responsibility, then, was obedience to the One who had allowed them to witness those miracles.  In other words, the experience of His presence was an act of grace that not everyone (up to that point in time) had been privy to.  And every act of grace carries with it the weight of personal responsibility.

Lastly, obedience to God, although a worthy end in itself, was also a means to an additional provision: strength.  Like taking care of my property, it takes a certain amount of vigor to maintain (dare I say “conquer”?) the challenges of home ownership; I can only imagine what it must have been like going into the Promised Land.  So I find that the people’s strength to conquer and maintain was uniquely tied to their obedience to God. 

Hmmmm….

Okay, time to do some never-ending work in the garden.  (At least I can to that much without having to call in a plumber.)

Deuteronomy 11:7,8  Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Re-reformed theology (i.e., choose your own crayon….)

From my brother’s email box.  Draw your own analogies…but smile, ‘cuz life’s too short not to!  -dawnlizjones
The Presbyterian church called a meeting to decide what to do about their squirrels. After much prayer and consideration, they concluded the squirrels were predestined to be there and they shouldn’t interfere with God’s divine will.
At the Baptist church the squirrels had taken an interest in the baptistery. The deacons met and decided to put a water slide on the baptistery and let the squirrels drown themselves. The squirrels liked the slide and, unfortunately, knew instinctively how to swim so twice as many squirrels showed up the following week.
 
The Methodist church decided that they were not in a position to harm any of God’s creatures. So, they humanely trapped their squirrels and set them free near the Baptist Church. Two weeks later the squirrels were back when the Baptists took down the water slide.
 
But the Catholic Church came up with a very creative strategy. They baptized all the squirrels and consecrated them as members of the church. Now they only see them on Christmas and Easter.
 
Not much was heard from the Jewish synagogue; they took the first squirrel and circumcised him. They haven’t seen a squirrel since.
squirrel

Good fences make for good gardens

garden lastThis place is a wreck.  Sitting out here on the patio in the early morning Missouri summer humidity, I’m looking at the weeds resolutely poking through the already treated pave stones.  There’s some unwanted green stuff growing amongst the begonia pots, and the garden hoses are in dire need of mending.  On top of all of this, a brown leaf just now floated gently down (to meet the weeds on the pave stones, I suppose.) 

Now wait a minute!  It’s only July!  I’m not ready for Autumn yet!  Besides, no fair, since I’ve been out of town for a week, which gave the weeds and their comrades free reign.   Continue reading “Good fences make for good gardens”