Random Acts of "Kindness"

Archive for August, 2016

VIEW FROM THE PORCH

When we bought our property at the campground, we knew we were on the edge of the property. We didn’t realize how lucky we were. In the early days of the campground, cows were in the pasture across the road. I often walked across to visit. Various dogs of ours also crossed the road to visit the cows. I don’t think the cows were impressed. Time has passed and the cows are gone. Market conditions might have been the cause. Now the fields are planted with crop — grass, corn, beans, hay depending on the season and year. Our resident deer love to cross the road to graze on the various offerings. This year a mother and two fawn are going out for dinner.

Sometime along the way, a small park was installed across from us. Even though it is very small, it is a gathering place for many of the children. Last year when the tornado struck and demolished many trees, the second day we were allowed to return, I heard children’s voices coming from behind the trees. I wrote a speak up sheet asking that the park be replaced. I learned that the park hadn’t been in their plans but the speak up sheet worked. The park is even smaller — only a baby swing and a bigger swing, with a slide set. Last weekend 10 children were there at one time followed by other various groups. A red haired teenager took advantage of the swing and the quiet to have some quiet time of her own.

Our property faces south from which a breeze comes on most days. Thanks to the tornado, many of the trees are gone — the breeze isn’t blocked. When the temperature was in the 90’s, the breeze was a very welcome addition. Another advantage for us is that we are not close to the pools or the lakes. Even on busy weekends, our place is not crowded. Not having other campers across the road is also a blessing. Since it is so open, we can watch the lightening and the storms further south. Farmers cutting their crop. Once or twice a summer we are treated to crop dusting planes.

Recently we had the opportunity to purchase a self propelled used lawn mower. We have a service cut our lawn but not our son’s. The weed whacker my husband used was becoming too much work — equipment was needed. In the course of our conversation at the store, we learned that an antique tractor run was scheduled for the next day. Imagine our surprise when we saw the tractors on the back road, right across from our porch. I didn’t realize what I was seeing at first, so I didn’t count until 10 tractors had passed but I did get my camera for a couple of close shots.

DRIP DRIP

DRIP — before going out to the camper, I retrieved some food from my shelves in the basement. Only to discover we had an uninvited guest who had helped itself to Robin’s dog food. Of course I wasn’t pleased. I moved assorted packaged edibles into hard plastic storage bins and placed some tasty treats in their place.

DRIP — DRIP Robin discovered a tiny skunk who was living under our room addition at the camper. Not quite nose to nose but too close for comfort, Robin got her first bath. Then she discovered a ground hog that stayed just out of her reach. It also is living under our room addition. Roommates or Condo?

DRIP — DRIP — DRIP Uninvited guest in the basement does not like the green treats I put out. It was trying to eat Lipton tea. More stuff packed. Personnel at Ace Hardware said rodents get used to poisons after a month and ignore them. I had not picked up the poison left from our last guest — my mistake. Old fashioned trap with peanut butter provided a tasty last meal.

DRIP — DRIP — DRIP — DRIP I needed brown rice for a soup I was making. I keep both short grain and long grain brown rice in separate glass jars. I must have had my glasses on because I saw clumps of rice in the jar. Further investigation confirmed the fact that both jars of rice were infected by bugs, even though I had placed bay leaves in each jar. It must have been the day or the week — Robin’s Milk Bone biscuits were also infected by black bugs. ALL RICE AND BISCUITS WERE REMOVED, JARS WASHED. I’ll wait until the fall, and cooler weather before I replace the rice and biscuits.

DRIP — DRIP — DRIP — DRIP — DRIP Enough already! A squirrel chewed through the screen in our kitchen. Luckily my husband saw it as it entered and the squirrel left the same way it had entered. My fault again — I had cleaned out the fridge and left the bag of stuff on the kitchen counter near the open window. It must of been very fragrant to attract the squirrel. We have lived in our house over fifty years and never had a squirrel in the kitchen before. I picked up ammonia at the store and plan to put some between the new screen and window to discourage further entrance — at least for a while. I’m glad my husband came into the kitchen when he did, it would have been more fun than we needed if Robin had seen the squirrel. She is ALWAYS chasing them.

We might try ammonia on rags under the room addition at the camper to discourage our occupants. The last thing we need is skunk perfume.

I’m hoping the DRIPS have stopped for awhile. This is more fun than I really want to have. My energy has left with the high temperatures and high humidity. Listening to the news, I learned that the corn crop is partially responsible for the humidity. Because of new farming practices, more corn is being planted, yielding higher yields, and releasing more moisture into the air. Good for the farmer and the people of the world. Not necessarily good for the climate.

BE NOT AFRAID

This is the title of a religious song that I first heard when I planned to publish the story of living with Pap’s Alzheimer’s disease. “Be not afraid, I go before you. Come follow Me.” I almost said that it was a new song, but my father passed over more than 20 years ago. He definitely isn’t gone, I’m reminded of my “friends in high places” regularly. Which in my life is a good thing.

I had a warning storms were coming into my life. THANKFULLY THEY ARE NOT HEALTH CONCERNS. I have the ability to turn a tiny bump into a mountain in the blink of an eye. When there is only one problem at a time, I have a better chance. When they pile up, it is harder for me to relax. Even if I have done my best to solve it, and am waiting for the results, they continue to surface like the bubbles in the boiling hot pools in Yellowstone.

Many of my warnings come from the bible. When I open to Job or the furnace in Daniel, I am aware that storms might be coming.The verse often hints at the severity of the problem. Am I proclaiming God’s strength in Job, or listing shortcomings. Have I pointed to the beginning of the furnace where there are three walking or to the ending where they have an angel with them and are praising God?

I won’t list the turmoil in our life right now, I’m sure you have enough of your own but thankfully God is in charge. I needed to tell our neighbor about an upcoming project. He is in Arizona and I didn’t have his phone number. Luckily I opened our curtains and saw his tenant outside. Not only did his tenant have the needed phone number, he will be able to unlock their gates when we have our tree trimmed.

Some of it is just little things — temperature and humidity levels in the hundreds that continues for days. Strong storms when we have a leak in our roof. A flash of lightning that looked like it hit our house. Thankfully that was just a reflected light. (We had a lightning strike hit our house when our children were young.) The car battery loose.

While the bible often alerts me, as well as my book Queen of Angels, they also remind me that God is in charge. “Who made the world a desert? ” Daniel 3:28. “The Lord goes forth like a hero.” Isaiah 42:13. “saying to the prisoners, come out.” Isaiah 49:9. Church is often in the mix: “Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.” Psalm 138

The key is to be aware of the interactions in my life. To keep my eyes wide open, the blinders off. To have courage — God is in charge.

I read something interesting last night. It was in the June 30 issue of Woman’s World. I often buy the magazine but don’t often read it cover to cover. Trying to get rid of some of the clutter on our table, I scanned quite a few of the magazines and found this. “Taming tension with red meat. Eating 16 oz of beef or pork weekly could help you feel less stressed in as little as five day. Red meat is rich in iron and all nine essential amino acids which together relax tense muscles. ”

After the birth of our four children, my request to my husband was for an Italian beef sandwich. I’m often looking for leftover beef in our fridge or getting a hamburger. Makes sense now.

The problems in our world make the problems in my life extremely small. OUR WORLD NEEDS OUR PRAYERS! Please join me! Years ago I read that a group of people joined in praying for the world during a crisis.

PRACTICING

It wasn’t that long ago when I answered a question that asked me to list the 10 most important people in my life. The answer/question that made me pause was when I was asked where on the list I was. OF COURSE, I WASN’T THERE AT ALL. And I will have to admit that most of the time, if I am planning meals — I don’t stop to think of what I am going to eat. Since I’m sodium restricted, I CAN’T eat many of the foods that are my husband’s favorites: hot dogs, bratwurst, ham, biscuits and gravy, etc. At the same time he doesn’t care for fresh vegetables or salads.

But I’M PRACTICING. We had two of our younger grandchildren at the camper for a week. I actually made a list of the meals I thought I would make. I was proud of myself when I asked myself what I was going to eat and actually bought the foods I needed. It is a step in the right direction. And since that week, I’ve noticed that I’m including myself more often.

UPDATE:
WEIGHT — sadly no progress, but I haven’t added anymore that has stuck for more than a few days. And I’m not giving up.
PAIN — I’m glad to acknowledge that apple cider vinegar and honey, twice a day seems to be working.
Although I still have some pain, it is not as constant or severe as it was. Hopefully this will continue. I will admit that if I forget and only have the mixture once during the day, or forget completely, pain reminds me of my forgetfulness.
EXERCISE — at the camper I did a complete set of Aging Backwards only once, Water aerobics 3 times. Back home I did a complete set of Aging Backwards, both muscles and bones. I noticed that I didn’t have pain in my shoulders that night and the pain in my left knee seems to be improving. I don’t know if I’m more flexible but I’ve decided to keep practicing.

The synchronicities in my life often make me smile. This week, I remembered I used to make a tuna macaroni salad when my kids were small. I thought it would be a healthy meal for me with the high temperatures, I wouldn’t have to cook for myself. I didn’t find the recipe I used to make, but I improvised, and it is tasty. The tuna salad is NOT on my husband’s menu. When we have been out of town, it takes me a period of time before I’m caught up. During that time, I don’t take time to read my e-mails. Tonight I was trying to catch up. Over the week, if I had been checking, I would have seen tuna fish macaroni salad recipes on line at least two different times. And I smiled.

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