Random Acts of "Kindness"

Archive for April, 2014

STILL TRYING

I have lost count of how many times we have planned a trip this year to visit our youngest daughter and family and had to cancel the plan. And it has happened again.

All winter whenever we planned to travel south, the weather forecast predicted snow and freezing temperatures. The route we take is open farm fields that are polished by the wind. Planning to travel in a snow storm can be challenging. The news on television has been filled with too many multi vehicle car crashes. So we have postponed the trip many times. Now it is Spring. We should be able to travel. Right? WRONG!

First the emission light came on in our car. Fixing the problem required a few days at the garage — delaying our most recent plan to travel. Then our son in law got a bad cold. Since I haven’t fully recovered from the flu, cold, and congestion of the winter, postponing our trip seemed to be a good idea. Next our dog, Robin, had stomach problems making it unwise to travel. I remembered a brew I made for Mabel, our chocolate Lab, when her stomach acted up. It is equal parts white potato, and sweet potato with a turnip and a slice of leek added for good measure, stewed with lamb for flavor — then mashed. It seems to be working on Robin too. We are waiting — planning — hoping that maybe in a couple of days we will be able to travel.

ON A DIFFERENT NOTE:

Robin seems to be allergic to chicken. Although we have not put her through allergy tests at the vet, eliminating chicken flavored dog food from her diet reduced her scratching. We finally found a dog food that DID NOT contain chicken, poultry by products or meal or chicken fat. And she ate it! I planned to buy more when I noticed the bag now announced a chicken flavor. I phoned the manufacturer to learn if they were making two different products before I combed the stores. Sadly they are not and the customer service rep told me that the product ALWAYS contained chicken. Even when I read the ingredient list to him he didn’t change his statement. I won’t bore you with our whole conversation or the many times I was on hold. I asked him if any of their dry dog food was manufactured without chicken or poultry by products. Sadly they are not. And sadly the search is on for a food that is healthy for her to eat. Her allergy seems to be with all feathered products. Duck breast brought on a new episode of scratching.

I’m now feeding her Purina Pro Select for sensitive skin and tummy’s. Hopefully they won’t change their formula.

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ISSUES

If I was (??) psychic, (??) in touch with my intuition, (??) able to meditate, (??). My life might be easier. I might receive the message — I might actually know what the message is. Instead I wander around, sometimes slopping through mud, trying to figure it out. I get hit on the head ALOT.

At least 10 years ago, my husband and I were in Florida for Ash Wednesday. The priest reflect in his homily that Lent was the time to clear the internal pipes. I will admit that I did a lot of pipe work that year. Since then, instead of giving something material up for Lent, I have tried to work on my spirituality. This year I picked up Dr. Wayne Dwyer’s memoir “I Can See Clearly Now.” In it he reflects on the lessons he received from his early experiences. Since my life has had challenges of its own, I can relate to his stories. Sometimes my recollections catch me off guard — bringing up stuff that is still painful.

That isn’t exactly what this thought ramble is about. Yesterday my husband and I left our dog, Robin, at home while we went shopping. Our son was upstairs in his office working, with the entrance fenced off so she couldn’t pester him. She sat at the gate and cried. She didn’t want to be alone. She must have thought that the least he could do was to let her in with him or come out to play with her.

I want to declare that I’M NOT A DOG WHISPER! I have no real knowledge of what she is thinking although I can often make a pretty good guess. Robin was rescued from a shelter when she was about a year old. We DO NOT KNOW her history. From her dietary preferences, we wonder if she wasn’t abandoned, left to scrounge for food on the street. Or did she see something that needed to be chased and lost her way. We have no way of knowing what affected her earlier life. We know she doesn’t like to be outside by herself, will only eat her food if someone is in the kitchen with her, and is skittish — afraid of loud noises.

When our children were small we had an Irish Setter named Rusty. He had been in many homes before he joined ours. He was a very good dog in some cases, but a terror in others. He would take possession of an article — sock, shoe or garbage bag — and dare you to take it away. Our friend Muscles was able to make him obey, so was my husband. My husband knocked him out when he was fighting with another of our dogs. In time I was able to take the treasured item away by using a chair like a lion tamer. Rusty had been in too many different homes and allowed to get away with bad behavior when he was a puppy. He was lucky that we were understanding and put up with his issues until old age took him home.

Human’s are affected by their early childhood. Are dogs, cats and other animals similarly affected? I wonder …..

NEWS

Starting the day, no coffee or tea yet — I turned on the television to get the weather report. A traffic alert was being broadcast — a main street near our house was closed because of a fire, recommendations were being given to avoid the closure. Normally that wouldn’t affect me at all except I was planning to go out. In fact, I had overslept and needed to leave within the hour. I was hoping the weather report would give me information that I needed. The traffic alert definitely did.

It was the second time since January that I have taken our car out by myself. The cold, ice and snow have clipped my wings. The forecast for the day promised spring like temperatures and I was taking advantage of the sunshine — meeting a friend before the next storm arrived. I headed for one of the alternative streets and quickly learned that wasn’t a good idea. A gas station on the corner allowed me to turn the car around. I tried another recommended street with the same results. No gas station but a side street allowed me to make my escape. I didn’t want to waste the day stuck in traffic.

Everybody must have had the same idea. Traffic was heavier than normal. My third alternative provided a safe route and moving traffic. The parking lot at the restaurant where we eat breakfast was full, snow and ice restricted parking places. I finally found a safe place to park on the street.

Often — my day will follow the pattern that starts it. This day followed that course. Many challenges — none insurmountable. I wished that I had made a shopping list, trusting to my memory was always interesting. Luckily I have “friends in high places” that like to “help” me. At the stores, I wandered down aisles that contained items that I needed. I remembered to buy a pair of shoes for my husband and a flashlight. Checking out at the register, I had spent more than I planned. Looking at the receipt I noticed the flashlight was more than the shelf sticker advertised. The return line was long but I didn’t want to keep the flashlight. It might never get back to the store.

I finally was getting close to the counter when BOTH of the people ahead of me had issues that were not resolved quickly. In both cases a supervisor needed to be called, merchandise brought from the back of the store, conferences held and I wondered if I REALLY wanted to return the item.

It was FINALLY my turn. And five minutes later we were on the way to my car.

I won’t bore you with the rest of my day. Just a couple of highlights. When I order French fries without salt, I received a larger size for the long wait. I found pot roast on sale. The price had been too high for me to comfortably purchase some.

Arriving back home, I hadn’t had time in the morning for all of my morning prayers. I opened my Queen Of Angel book and read “accept my protection.” My response –THANK YOU, I did!

MOUNTAINS

I know that I’m not alone. Almost everyone that I speak to is in the same boat — too much snow — too much below zero temperatures — too much gray skies — too much — too much.

We have a four foot mountain of snow in our backyard. I climbed to the top the other day when I noticed that the cold temperatures had frozen it. Robin — all 25 pounds– enjoyed climbing to the top. I weigh more than 25 pounds, but the frozen temperatures made it possible for me too.

The Body, Mind, Spirit Exp. was this past weekend. Normally I really enjoy arriving early and staying late. Sadly, not this year. Snow — changed my plans — forecast starting Saturday afternoon. Not just a dusting but a formidable amount. AGAIN! I went to the Exp. on Saturday, visited with a couple of vendors, attended two workshops and headed home before the snow started. I did not want to be on the tollway and expressway in icy conditions. NOT THE DAY I HAD PLANNED. I suppose I could have ventured forth on Sunday, but after dealing with five inches of snow I really wasn’t up to it.

I stayed home and made bread pudding instead. I haven’t made bread pudding in years. COMFORT FOOD from my childhood. My husband has never eaten it, and not about to start now. More for me! I also found a coffee grinder and ground coffee beans that my daughter brought home from Costa Rica many years ago.

I know my friends in high places are around. Helping out when they can. A woman at the Exp. on Saturday shared how she is able to walk in the ice and snow. “MARCH”, she told me. “I have Parkinson’s and marching plants my feet firmly on the ground.”

Recently I opened the bible to Jeremiah 10:23. “You know O Lord, that man is not master of his ways; Man’s course is not within his choice nor is it for him to direct his step.”

That day I wandered to Costco. We actually had warmer temperatures, sunshine and blue skies. While I was talking to a friend, a worker in the delicatessen showed me cheese that was on sale. Cheese is not on my food plan right now, but it is Lent — no meat on Fridays. Cheese with nuts and cranberries came home with me. I found a book “Jesus Calling” which now includes a journal. After many trips to the store, the smaller book is now in my possession. I decided I could use my own notebook if I wanted to comment on the day’s writing, not buy the new one.

After all it is LENT, and I’m searching. I would have gone to church on Ash Wednesday, but we had more snow. I was going to walk — then I realized that ice is hiding under the snow. And I wonder why I’m depressed — feel blocked.

When I was at Costco I also found a new book by Dr. Wayne Dyer: “I Can See Clearly Now.” I have a habit of opening a book to a page at random to see if it speaks to me — it did. I don’t know if I will gain new knowledge. It might be another nudge — write — write –share! Even if you are grumbling about the weather.

Over the years, I often write down things that impress me on any piece of paper at hand. I recently found this, I don’t know the source — “A whisper — A Pebble — A knock on the head — When God wants your attention. ” Should I admit that I bumped my head hard enough this morning to almost knock myself out?

I watched Dr. Wayne Dyer’s new program this morning, he commented during a pledge break that his writing has helped many people, even saved a man’s life. I don’t think that I will ever write 40 books or be as successful as Dr. Dyer, but if my writing helps others to know that they are not alone — these rambles have served a purpose.

Just a Note: I released “Drips” to publish on 3/30. It was written on my father’s birthday — we had visited the Swedish Museum. Unplanned — Drips posted on my paternal grandmother’s birthday –she was born in Sweden.

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