Tuesday, October 2, 2012

O Happy Day!


On one of the routes I take when walking, I pass this cheery sight.  What a way to make a positive statement in a neighborhood.  It's like saying to each who pass by, "Have a nice day !" 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

No More Hello Kitty

Xavier "Kitty"
1996 - 2012

That's all I can say for now.  I am sure I will write about him at another time.  His absence is felt. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

You Never Know Who Will Show Up at Church

It just might be Snow White!

Lots of fun awaited the kids this morning at church.  A new Sunday School curriculum began.  To launch the curriculum, they had characters between services in the halls and meeting places greeting children and giving away some magnets.   So Snow White with her friend Cinderella, along with other kings & princesses, were at my church this morning.  You just never know who will show up!   

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What's in a name

When my daughter was pregnant with her first child, we had a discussion over what my new name should be to her little one. 

Grandmother, Grandma, Granny, Nanny, Nana, Mawmaw, Memaw, Opa, Yiayia -- these are all names that I've heard used for the position I was to take.  My preference was "Grandma."  When I hear the word "Grandma," I think of love, tenderness, and good feelings.  In effect, I think of my grandmother who I called "Grandma."  That is what I wanted to be called. 

But...my daughter had other plans.  She wanted me to be called Yiayia.  Having been to Greece, I conjure up visions of a yiayia as an older woman, slightly hunched over, dressed in black or dark clothing and wearing a scarf over her head. That is not my idea of me.   By the way, that was also my other grandma -- the one from Greece.

The reason she wanted me to be a "yiayia" was that "grandma" was already taken.  Huh??   Her mother-in-law was to be called "grandma" and she gets it because she was already had that name to my new grandchild to be's cousins.

Why can't we both be "Grandma?"    Growing up, I had my Grandma and my Grandma Mary (also known as Yiayia).     The problem with this solution was that both other Grandma and I have the same name.  So unless we differentiated by last names, we would still be called by the same name.   I did not want to be known as Grandma Smith and Grandma Jones  ( I slipped in other surnames there, but you get the drift.) 

 I still didn't see the problem with us both being called grandma.  Kids are pretty smart, and they will figure it out.  But my daughter didn't want the confusion for her child.   However, she compromised with me. I could be called "Grandma Yiayia."     Ugh.  Not really what I what, but that is what we decided. 

Almost four years and an additional grandchild later , I am technically Grandma Yiayia, but I call myself "Grandma" and more importantly so does my grandson.  Without getting mixed up, he calls both his grandmothers "Grandma."

Or so I thought.  I discovered the other day that my name when I am not around is "Grandma Kitty."  Out of the mouths of babes.   We were out to lunch at a restaurant and both grandmothers were there.  His mother asked him a question and he asked, "Grandma Kitty or Grandma Gidgett?"

I have a cat named Kitty, and the other grandma has a dog named Gidgett.  That is how he differentiates us.   Grandma Kitty and Grandma Gidgett.  I was worked up over the English or the Greek name and the connotations, then last names added to the name.  But what is in a name?  It ends up that I am known by my cat! 

What do you call your grandparent? 

What do you want to be called when you are a grandparent?  


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

College Football Time !


Last Saturday was the first football game of the season.  The town was revved up for a new season and some new changes.  This year we switched conferences and we anxiously look forward to our new opponents.  A few days before the game, Hurricane Issac came hit land in the Gulf and flooded the New Orleans area with rain and wind.  The remnants of Issac made its way to us by Friday and finished  dropping its much needed moisture on us Saturday.  It dampened everything but the football spirit.  Nothing could do that!   The first game of the season ended with a victory!  Go Team!


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Transit of Venus

(Venus is the dark round dot in the upper right quadrant on the Sun)

The planet Venus passed between Earth and the Sun yesterday giving us a once in a lifetime view of its path.  This is called the Transit of Venus.  If you missed it--well, too bad. You've lost your chance to see one. 

Transit.  The passage of a smaller celestial body or its shadow across the disk of a larger celestial body. As observed from Earth, Mercury and Venus are the only planets of the solar system that make transits of the Sun, because they are the only planets with orbits that lie between Earth and the Sun. Mercury makes an average of 13 transits of the Sun each century. Transits of Venus across the Sun are much rarer, with only 7 of them having occurred between 1639 and 2004. 
(from http://dictionary.reference.com/science/transit)

A crowd of about 500 showed up at the University Observatory to take a turn looking through one of the twenty or so high-powered telescopes set up to help view this event.  This picture was taken from the view. 

The average wait to get to the telescope was abut 20 minutes and most were satisfied with their turn.  Unfortunately, 15 -20 minutes before sunset clouds came in and obscured the view.  The people who had waited the longest did not get to see anything beyond clouds though the telescopes. 

The next time the planets align so that Venus will again pass between Earth and the Sun with such a flourish will be in 2117.  Barring any new medical discoveries-- we will all be dead and gone by then.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Firemen & Policemen, Oh my!

Last week there was a great fire in town that burned some apartment housing that was under construction.  The fire was so hot that it melted the traffic lights nearby.  The fire is still under investigation and that may turn out to be another story.

 But for today, I am thankful that we have men and women who make it their responsibility to fight fires when they occur.  That we have policemen and policewomen to help enforce our laws and keep us safe.  That although I do not like paying taxes, I am thankful to have safety equipment to help these safety people do their jobs efficiently and effectively.

The following pictures were some taken by a local radio station of that morning's fire.


Monday, May 28, 2012

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Lucky Day

I went to fill my gas tank up today and this is what I came upon--

See a penny, pick it up.  All day long, you'll have good luck.

Alright  luck--- I'm awaitin'! 

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

In the same way....

Slice of Life #5 - #6

 Looks like I missed the cutoff time for day 5, so I am going to submit this on day 6

I started a new exercise program recently.  So now everyday I prepare by gathering the proper equipment.  I wear loose-fitting clothes and tennis shoes.  I get a water bottle full of cool water and the resistance band the exercise program sent me with the DVD's.

Once ready I can begin!  I push play on the remote and the fun commences.  (Although not always fun, it is important to have the right attitude. It helps with motivation. ) For the next 30 minutes or so I am stretched. twisted, and put my muscles to the test. The nice trainer on the DVD encourages me to keep at it and I'll get stronger the more I repeat this.   Many days I really don't want to perform this new routine of mine and it is hard to get started.  But I always feel good after I am finished and I am glad that I did it. 

In the same way........

I started a new writing challenge recently.  So now everyday I prepare by gathering the proper equipment.  Sometimes I get my notebook and pen first, but usually I just need my trusty computer.  I fill my coffee mug and get comfortable.

Once ready I can begin!  I login to my blogger account and the fun commences.  ( Although not always fun, it is important to have the right attitude. It helps with motivation.)  For the next 30 minutes or so I am stretched as a writer, twisting and wringing my hands as my writing muscles are put to the test.   The nice readers, by way of comments, encourage me.  I know that I wll get stronger the more  I keep at it. Many days I really don't want to perforn this new routine of writing daily, but I persevere and I always feel good after I am finished and I am glad that I did it.

Determine that the thing can and shall be done,
and then we shall find the way.
-Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Fishing Boy

 Slice of Life # 4

"Grandma, I went fishin' !"   The little voice came across the phone and I could hear how excited  my gransdon still was from his expedition yesterday. 

"Did you catch any fish? "  
"How did you catch them?"
"With a pole."
"Are you going to eat them?"
"No!!!  We are going to eat other fish."
 "Well, I'm gonna call you the 'Fishing Boy' "

I love and am amazed as I watch my grandson grow.  He is a country boy just like his father, my son-in-law.   My heart just swells when I hear him call my name.  He is my heart.  There is no love like a grandmother's love.  Especially for her Fishing Boy.   

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Date with my Daughter

Slice of Life #3

Standing there so lovely
in a flowing gown.
Gazing at the mirror
looking up and down.

A tuck here and a tuck there
the seamstress pins it all around.
We're here for the first fitting
It's the most beautiful dress to be found!

Hair up, hair down
The decision not yet made.
Twirl around once, and then again
She imagines their promenade.

It all began quite innocently
The day my daughter met a boy.
They fell in love, he asked for her hand.
Now this mother is full of joy.

There is much to be done, our lists are full
Flowers, dress, cake; nothing can we miss
But today we smile, the time comes quickly 
The day my daughter enters wedded bliss.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Celebrating Dr. Seuss

Slice of Life Challenge #2

A few years ago on this day I was up early preparing a special treat for the 4th grade class at school.  My grade level colleagues and I took on this project to serve our kids scrambled eggs and slices of ham for a breakfast celebration.  I should mention that the eggs were green.  That's right, we were giving our students "Green Eggs and Ham."  This was to celebrate both the birthday of Dr. Seuss and a reading/writing project they had finished. 

Fast forward three years.....

Today I watched my four month old granddaughter so that my daughter could take my three year old grandson to the newly released movie The Lorax.  This movie is based on the Dr. Seuss book by the same name.   Of course, I said I would. 

What do you do with a four month old?   Besides the necessities of eating drinking, sleeping, and diaper changing; we stretched our arms & wiggles our toes, we cooed at each other, and we played with the Cat in the Hat!  It doesn't take much to entertain a baby! 

I am glad that both my grandchildren interacted with the Dr. Seuss today - the day of his birth. I hope they will come to love his books as they grow. 

Some favorite Dr. Seuss quotes:

"Why fit in when you were born to stand out?"

"The more you read the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go."

"Be who you are and say what you mean.  Because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

And a Dr. Seuss quote especially fitting for this Slice of Life Challenge:

"Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one."   


Thursday, March 1, 2012

A Challenge!

Two Writing Teachers are hosting their annual Slice of Life Writing Challenge.   For the month of March we are encouraged to write daily a "slice from our life." 

This year I have decided to take up the challenge and write.  I plan to write daily and hope that I can pull it off.  I know from teaching children to write that it is not easy to pull out your notebook and joy down snippets of life.  It takes practice, determination, and perseverance.   I hope to be diligent enough. 

...and somewhere down deep, I am a little afraid that this might be too big of a step and I might be a failure...  But then my teacher-self steps in to tell me that even if I don't get everyday accomplished, any writing is better than no writing and I will have learned and be better off for doing whatever it is that I do get done...    

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I can carry through till the end of the month!   

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Reading for Lent

The season of lent is nearly upon us. 

Lent is the 40 days preceeding Easter. It begins Wednesday, February 22.    

Christians use this time to fast, pray, confess, and give to others as a means of a type of spiritual tune-up.  It is a time of spiritual reflection and renewal.  The lenten season is highly varied across denominations and across individuals.  Some Christians adhere to all the elements of lent, others may decide to give up something they treasure during this time, and still others may not outwardly manifest any lenten behaviors.  Christians become closer to God in anticipation of Easter.

To help, Bible Gateway has three easter - devotional newsletters you can sign up to have emailed to you. 
One is for reading through the gospels during lent.  This one is sent daily.
One is Lent Devotions with scripture readings and various devotional thoughts.  This one is sent a few tiems a week.
The last one is specific to the Story of Jesus - His life and ministry.  This is sent daily. 

You can sign up at Bible Gateway  for all three or just one or two.  It is up to you.

During this season, I am going to be reading the gospels again. 

What will you do during this time to prepare for Easter ?  

Feeling Old

My birthday was a few weeks ago. 
I didn't hit a milestone birthday, that was last year.  It's been a tough year with lots of changes that have nothing really to do with age.  I just didn't think I would have to be in this place making these changes.

Through tough times, though,  you grow.  Like the saying says, "What doesn't kill you will only make you stronger."    Well, sometimes I wonder if I am on the stronger end or the killed end.   Every day is another opportunity to find out! 

So, it was my birthday and it was lovely.   The people who care about me let me know that they appreciate me and recognized my special day.  I felt good - I felt young and lively -- the world at my feet.  Anything is possible!  

Then I got this in the mail:

PSsshhshhh.......  What's that you say?   That's the air being let out of my lively, young step.   I feel old.  Officially. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

New song by Crossing Music

Crossing Music has three new songs out.  This one is He Holds All Things.  This and their other music is available at http://www.crossingsongs.com/
He Holds All Things (lyrics)
Who has known the mind of God, been His counselor?

Who has giv'n a gift to God that He might be repaid?
From Him, to Him, His glory is sustained.
Through Him, for Him, all things are made.

Your hands were first to hang the stars, to plan creation's path.
Every angel, every king, Your sovereign hand has cast.
From Him, to Him, our universe sustained.
Through Him, for Him, all things are made.

From kingdom dark to kingdom's light, Your blood has made a way.
The death of sin and hope of life, Your mighty cross proclaims.
From Him, to Him, salvation is sustained.
Through Him, for Him, all things remade.

He holds all things together.
He holds all things together.
You work all things together.

(You made all things, You made all things.)

(You hold all things, You hold all things.)

You hold our world together.
You hold my life together.

(You work all things for our good.)
(You work all things for those You love.)

You brought peace by the blood of Your cross!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Birthday Snow!

 When I was a little girl I had a prediction about the weather.  If we did not have a white Christmas, then I forecast that I would get a white birthday.  This was reasonable because my birthday is in January. Oftentimes it held true. One or the other (or both) always had snow.

This year the weather has been very mild.  Christmas was balmy.  January has had several days reaching near 60 degrees.   The other night , the weather person on TV said that this year, with a mere two inches of snowfall this season, it is the 3rd least amount of snow EVER recorded for our area since they have been keeping track.   I suppose it is making up for last year when we had a total of 45 inches of snow, making it one of our snowiest.

So imagine my delight when I wake up this morning -- my birthday -- to find -- SNOW!!
Not much...but it is snow.  Somehow it makes me happy. 
It will be fleeting - the sun will soon warm the day and melt the snow away.  But for now I will choose to believe that the snow is a birthday present to me.  Perhaps my parents convinced Mother Nature to send this gift to let me know they are watching over me and to wish me a Happy Birthday.
Hooray for Birthday Snow!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"It's White....It's Cold...."

"It's white... it's cold...you can lay down in it and make angels..."

The first snow of the year fell a couple weeks ago. My grandson excitedly took on his role as "big brother extraordinaire" as he explained to his 2 1/2 month old sister all about this new stuff. 

His expression is priceless!  She is so lucky to have a big brother who will make sure she understands all the things in life that are new and/or confusing.