Thursday, October 31, 2013

Please say a little prayer . . .

This adorable 8-year-old is under-going chemo for lymphoma. He lives almost 700 miles from me, but I love him just the same. His human mother (my sister) has steadfastly shared pictures and stories about Tucker so that I could enjoy him from a distance.
All of his human family members are devastated and praying that the chemo can stop his cancer. He has been cherished since he was born. His closest furry friends are a tiny Westie named Bailey and his next door neighbor, also a Goldendoodle.
When you have a spare moment, please ask God to send Tucker and his family strength to get through this. Many thanks!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

I Love Autumn

Around D.C., Autumn often arrives slowly, producing lovely mixes of colored leaves that last for a while because the really cold weather doesn't usually arrive until December or January.  I also enjoy the migrating Lady Bugs and Monarch butterflies.

Hope you are enjoying whatever season you are entering and appreciate the change.  I know I could not live in a place where the weather was always the same, but to each her own  .   .     .

Saturday, October 26, 2013

My sermon for a sunny Saturday.

Oh, to be so carefree and have no worries again!  I still feel like this on occasion and wish I could be four again (without having to repeat my teens.)  I wouldn't be a teen these days for love nor money!

Children are forced to grow up too quickly and lose nearly all of what should be carefree childhood.  They cannot play outdoors without worrying about being snatched.  Parents instill their little ones with fear of strangers to the point where friendly, harmless types like me feel afraid to even smile at a little child, much less strike up a conversation.

Can we ever go back to a time when children left the house early in the morning and played until they were hungry?  We didn't need fancy toys and manufactured our own adventures using our imaginations and whatever raw materials were at hand.

I fear that modern electronics and lazy/too busy parents are responsible for children missing out on their childhoods.  Cellphones, computers, television and electronic games prevent kids from developing their minds in a natural way.  Just once I'd love to watch a child pick up a stick and some leaves to create a little boat to "sail" on a puddle.  Running just because she can should be allowed without the rigid control of "helicopter parents."

I wish . . .

Thursday, October 17, 2013

An Indian Prayer

The following came in a mailing from an American Indian nation asking for donations to their school. The simple, pure prose appealed to me because it uses words I prefer to formal prayers with their thees and thous.

Genuine humility is an important element when one is praying and this prayer embodies that -- for me, anyway. The author is not credited.

Whose voice I hear in the winds,
And whose breath gives life to all the world, hear me!
I am small and weak.
I need your strength and wisdom.

Let me walk in beauty, and make my eyes ever
behold the red and purple sunset.

Make my hands respect the things you have
made and my ears sharp to hear your voice.

Make we wise so that I may understand the
things you have taught my people.

Let me learn the lessons you have hidden
in every leaf and rock.

I seek strength, not to be greater than my
brother, but to fight my greatest enemy -- myself.

Make me always ready to come to you with
clean hands and straight eyes.

So when life fades, as the fading sunset,
my spirit may come to you without shame.

Monday, October 14, 2013

I am not Malala . . .

. . . and I thank my lucky stars that I am not.

Living in a country that requires education for all children and pays for it with taxes is a huge gift. Too many of us did not and still do not appreciate the ease and safety of getting an education in the U.S.

Another reason I am not Malala is that I possess none of her courage, strength or perseverance. This sixteen years old young woman has already had nearly a life time of experience and still remains a thoughtful and intelligent girl willing to put others first.

Malala Yousafzai spoke to school girls from the D.C. region during a recent event sponsored by the World Bank. During the Q&A session she was asked if she had ever wished she was a boy and what she would advise fathers of girls.

“I would tell them don’t give anything extra to your daughters, but don‘t clip their wings. Let them fly, and give them the same rights as your sons. Give them a chance to be a human being.”

Those who tried to eliminate her influence by trying to kill her instead created a martyr. This poised, gentle young lady is now an inspiration to girls and women worldwide. I hope and pray she lives a long and fulfilling life.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

History Repeated

The photo illustrates what happens when one of the huge rolls of newsprint ends and another begins. It also seemed analogous to the story that was cut in half by it in today’s Washington Post.

It is about Syrian Christians being tormented because of their religion. Christians in other majority-Muslim countries also are being targeted and harassed or murdered because of their faith.

Just as Christian crusaders centuries ago believed that Jews and Muslims were infidels and must be driven out of the Holy Land, Muslims are using the same reasoning to go after non-Muslims.

The three, major world religions, Christianity, Judaism and Islam all worship one deity. The name for this deity is different within each group but it is one and the same. Wouldn’t it be grand if they could all embrace that fact and let all the other dogma not get in the way of living in harmony?

I have no bone to pick [forgive me] with Muslims and Jews not eating pork. And so what if their Sabbaths are on different days? Women who cover their heads will get no argument from me. [I do make an exception for the burqa because it is simply inhumane.] Religious restrictions are important to each group but are not excuses for hatred and discrimination.

Religious intolerance has stewed for centuries, some worse than others. It’s on a tear right now. If I had my way, Jerusalem, an ancient city at the heart of the three major religions, would be a neutral, internationally policed city. I can dream, can’t I?

Friday, October 4, 2013

Pick-a-little-talk-a-little, pick-a-little-talk-a-little . . .

. . . CHEAP, CHEAP, CHEAP, pick-a-little-talk-a-little-more. . .

With apologies to Mr. Meredith Wilson, the above seemed the right caption for this photo.  Can you guess the group (in Washington, D.C.) to which I am referring?


Thursday, October 3, 2013

The biggest feet I've ever seen!

This is a U.S. Park Police horse on the National Mall.  I should think anyone wanting to make trouble would think twice before messing with THIS big boy!