And Just Like That…

Summer is over and it is time for school again.  Can you believe it?  My the summer sure flew by.  It was great and busy and so much fun.  We had time with friends and family, time to visit the beach, and the mountains as well.

How was your summer?  Is it over for you?  Not quite yet for many people.  Already finished for others. I hope your summer was as good as mine was. I hope you had fun, many blessings, and time to relax.

We enjoyed many sunsets while at the beach.  This photo is of one of them.  Isn’t it lovely!?  A little off-center but still nice.

Here are some things I am thankful for this summer:

  • Long walks
  • Seeing Ian learn to ride a bike
  • Ian reading an entire series of books, which I have just started
  • Vacation with my guys
  • A quick stop on the way home in New Orleans where I enjoyed beignets
  • Meals on my favorite porch with my favorite people (well many of them anyway)
  • Card games with a childhood friend
  • New games with family
  • Visits with dear friends
  • Laughs with friends and family
  • Hugs and prayer circles with loved ones
  • Fish tacos from a favorite restaurant
  • Treats from the ice cream truck
  • Trip to a theme park with my guys, including Dad
  • Jewelry store makings and chatting with Mom
  • Outdoor showers
  • Flexibility of a family business
  • Sleeping in and early morning cuddles
  • Hugs and kisses before bed
  • Birthday celebrations
  • Used bookstores and clothing stores
  • Movies and special shows
  • Family sing-alongs
  • Sunsets at the beach
  • Toes in the sand
  • Chats with cousins and siblings at the beach
  • Our family beach house
  • Generations of family enjoying time together
  • Special meals out with Kirk
  • Extra time to visit and be together
  • Art projects and henna tattoos
  • Enjoying every single day of the summer — no matter what we were doing or the weather — we did our best to savor it all

Now we are working to get back to our routine. It may be a tough week but we can do it. Routine is good and so we will be back to it very soon.

I was so busy and having such fun that I hardly wrote at all this summer. Sheesh. I meant to write more this month but just didn’t get to it. I will try to do more in August as my schedule is getting back to normal. Please let me know of ideas that you’d like to read about.

Blessings to you and yours. Hope your school year is a great one!  And if you are not in school, hope that work is going well.

Advertisements

Miracle in Thailand

Did you see the news this morning?  All 12 boys and their coach are now out of that cave in Thailand.  YEAH!!!!!!!  An amazing miracle.  They  survived against all odds and it is time to celebrate.

When I last watched the news this morning, the divers were still coming out and other adults who had been helping the boys.  I hope and pray that all of them will safely come out as well.

The teamwork and support that these boys have received has been amazing. The Navy Seals, the divers, paramedics, doctors, nurses, and other first responders have gone above and beyond. They are real and true heroes.

The fact that one person died while trying to help them is also amazing since it could have been so much worse.  I am very saddened about that loss and feel for his family and friends.  He was brave and strong and died doing something to help others.  Wow.

I only hope that we can learn from this bravery, this willingness to work together for the good of others, and the round the clock effort to get them out.  So amazing and so inspiring.  I want us to pull together as well in hard times and on issues that may divide us.

Although I don’t know the names of everyone involved, I will continue to keep them in my prayers.  I will think of the boys and hope they can return to their normal lives without too much pain and suffering.  I will think of their families and how relieved they are that they were returned back to them.  I will think of all of the brave men and women who made it possible for them to be brought out of that cave.

In the world of so much negative news, so much hate, and so much rhetoric, it has been refreshing and important to have a good news story.  The fact that a miracle occurred is the icing on the cake.

I wanted to add a few other things that I am thankful for:

  • The excitement of Ian reading all of the books in the Harry Potter series
  • Upcoming beach trip with family
  • Work where the three of us can be together
  • Running water, air conditioning, and a refrigerator
  • Iced tea or iced water on a hot day
  • Fans that help keep the air moving
  • Extra time with my guys
  • The laughter from silly Mad Libs answers
  • Lego builds that are amazing
  • Time with our loved ones
  • Laughs and fun memories
  • Extra long hugs
  • Messy, wind-blown hair
  • Visits with old friends
  • Sharing a meal with loved ones
  • The beach house front porch and table
  • That 12 boys and their coach will be okay despite the odds

I wonder what adventures we will have on our upcoming vacation?  I don’t know but am looking forward to them.  Blessings to you and yours.

(This map is from Power Point clip art.)

Happy Birthday to the Land That I Love

Tomorrow, July 4, is the birthday of the United States. In 1776, our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence that created this land that I love. This land of freedoms, of opportunities, and of care and compassion. Happy 242nd to you America!

I am thankful that they created our government with three equal but separate branches, instead of a monarchy which they came from. Those branches, as I learned in 9th grade Civics, are the legislative, executive, and judicial. My wish is that today our leaders in these branches would work together instead of constantly fighting and being mean to each other.

I hope and pray that we will continue to be a land of care and compassion, a land where anything is possible, a land where we help one another, and a land where we learn from each other’s differences. Sadly I am seeing more hate, division, mistrust, and no willingness to listen to each other.

That has to stop. We have to find a way to listen to one another, to learn from each other, and to be caring and help take care of each other. We have to do better for ourselves and for our children who look to us for guidance on how to treat others and navigate their world.

When President Reagan was in office, he had many heated discussions with senators and congressman, such as House Speaker Tip O’Neill. They went at it and spoke emphatically and strongly on their side, but they didn’t throw mud or call each other stupid or unwilling to work. They instead found compromises and worked for the betterment of the entire country.

Can we do that now? I believe we can. We just have to stop the rhetoric, the incitement of violence, and the hate. On both sides of every issue, we must do better. We must learn to love again and treat one another with kindness. We also must listen to each other, whether we agree or not. How else will we figure out our problems?

Our land is amazing and full of so many gifts and freedoms that many people in the world do not know. We can speak freely, we can worship as we choose, we can protect ourselves and our families, we can have a fair and speedy trial, and we can vote.

These are just some of the rights that we have as Americans. May we remember how precious they are, may we not take them for granted, may we protect them without hate and malice towards others, and may we remember we are all in this together.

A few quotes about the Declaration of Independence and Independence Day:

  • “It is very inspiring, my friends, to come to this that may be called the original fountain of independence and liberty in America and here drink draughts of patriotic feeling which seem to renew the very blood in one’s veins.” ~ President Woodrow Wilson
  • “Liberty is the breath of life to nations.” ~ George Bernard Shaw
  • “The Declaration of Independence! The interest which in that paper has survived the occasion upon which it was issued; the interest which is of every age and every clime; the interest which quickens with the lapse of years, spreads as it grows old, and brightens as it recedes, is in the principles which it proclaims.” ~ John Quincy Adams
  • “From every mountain side,  Let Freedom ring.” ~ Samuel F. Smith
  • “Where liberty dwells, there is my country.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
  • God Bless America
    Land that I love
    Stand beside her
    And guide her
    Through the night with the light from above
    From the mountains
    To the prairies
    To the oceans
    White with foam
    God bless America
    My home sweet home