Monthly Archives: December 2009

Pay It Forward, Random Act of Kindness – Whatever You Call It, Let’s Do IT!

By now I’m sure you’ve heard of the Philly couple that bought a stranger’s meal at a diner and for 5 hours customers continued to pay it forward. It reminded me that I hadn’t bought someone’s coffee in a while now.

About once every two months or so (I wish it were more often but quite honestly I don’t always think of it) I pay for the order of the person behind me in the drive-through or pay the toll for the car behind me when we go to “the big city” (as my daughter likes to call it.) Suddenly, this morning I remembered that it had been awhile so when I got my coffee this morning I paid for the car behind me, as well. Her bill was only $3.18. Hmmmm, I gave the cashier a $20. I looked in my rear view mirror and there were no more cars to pay for. So, $3.18 for my good deed of the day felt a little lack luster. I suppose I was expecting a little more grand gesture – not that I’m made of money, mind you, but I’m a few months behind in my good deeds. I was atoning for my neglect.

When I make these gestures I rarely look back to see the reaction. I hope to make a quick get-away, quite frankly. But this time? No such luck. I was stopped by two traffic lights in a row and she caught up with me by the second light. She rolled down her window. She searched my face for some recognition. She found none. “Thank you for this,” she said, “You don’t know what this means to me. I’m on my way to an interview. I lost my job a month ago and I HAVE to find work. I’d given these up,” and she raised her cup, “but I decided to splurge today for a little boost of confidence. Your kindness has done so much more.”

I could see that her eyes were brimming and she was fighting back tears. I was stunned into silence. I never said a word to her, just listened. The light turned green and she smiled and drove away. $3.18. Here I was feeling guilty I had only payed it forward with 3 dollars and 18 cents. But that $3.18 provided a much-needed boost for a woman in a desperate situation – looking for work just before Christmas. It meant more to her than I ever imagined it would.

So this weekend I want you to do me a favor. Pay it forward with someone else. Whatever you can afford. If it’s a meal, a cup of coffee, a bus token…for a stranger. Someone you never expect to see again. Then come back here to this post and comment about what you’ve done. Or post about it on your blog- but be sure to come back here to link to it so we can all read about what you’ve done.

Random acts of kindness spread joy like wildfire. I think they have more power than negativity. Together we can make the world a little happier this weekend with our small gestures. (Borrowing from Bender in The Breakfast Club) If he does it, then we’ll all do it and it’ll be anarchy! Let’s start our own little version of anarchy! Are you with me?

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Filed under Be-Causes, RAOK

Yes, Dear Bloggers, There IS A Santa Claus!

I believe in Santa Claus. I’m shocked when I meet someone who doesn’t. In fact, just recently, I was perusing your blogs out there and I found not one, not two but three blogs out there dedicating posts to the evils of Santa Claus. Santa = Evil?!? And there were comments, lots and lots of comments agreeing with them. I was angry. I was outraged. I vowed never to read those blogs again. I started taking names to avoid reading the blogs of people agreeing with such blasphemy.

And then I stopped myself. Jane, I said to myself, You believe in God. You are comfortable with Jesus being a saviour. You have friends who don’t. Who very vehemently do not believe in a God at all. You read their blogs. You’re fine with their difference of opinion, faith and beliefs.  You preach, “One mountain, many paths.” How can you completely disregard another blogger’s right to disagree with your belief in Santa Claus? How can ONE post nullify all the other posts you read by them and enjoyed? So….reluctantly….because logic won with this internal struggle…..I re-bookmarked all three of those blogs and I tore up my McCarthy list.

But not without defending my stand!

When my daughter was about three years old a friend told me about a wonderful Santa that I absolutely must take her to. We did.  He was elderly. (Of course) He had a genuine white beard and longer white hair. (Of course) He wore a red suit with shiny buttons and he sat out in his sleigh every night between Thanksgiving and December 23 (because he’s very busy on the 24th!) listening to the children, finding out about their lives, helping them to narrow their lists (he only allowed 2 toys because his sleigh was only so big!) and chatted with the parents. He must have had an eidetic memory. Through the years he would remember what school my daughter attended, her love of gymnastics, that she had a cat, even a few of the gifts he had brought her in the past. Before any of you start jumping up and down yelling, “Creepy!” I can assure you (and I’m quite sensitive to creepiness) it never, ever, ever, ever appeared creepy. He was genuine. He was sweet. He was Santa Claus.

And he did this out of the goodness of his heart. He was a member of our community – recently retired. His many acres of property were decorated with Christmas lights that brought people from miles around. He dedicated his time to help children believe in kindness, in goodness, in unconditional giving. He cared about the children in his community and took collections to “pay his light bill” and to give to the local Boys and Girls Club. He reminded them to study hard in school, mind their parents, brush their teeth. He reinforced strong values and the “real” reason for the season.

There is a 10 year age difference between my daughter and my sons. So for a time – she felt too old to see Santa in person – we skipped visiting. Oh sure, we always rode by to see the lights. If he wasn’t busy with another child he always waved to those passing by. But then we moved to another part of the county and once my boys arrived we skipped seeing Santa because we felt they were too young.

Then, they were 3 and 2 years old. They were ready! And I was so excited. I couldn’t wait for Santa to see how our daughter had grown. To meet her two new brothers. We talked to the boys about Santa. My daughter filled them in on what was to come Christmas morning. She helped them make a list. Just before we turned down the street I cried, “Let’s look for Santa!” But the street was dark. Only a porch light was on at the house. The area for parking wasn’t marked off anymore. My #1son asked, “Where Santa?” My husband quickly piped up, “Oh no! He’s not here tonight. I forget to check the schedule. I’ll bet he’s at the mall this evening.” It’s a good thing my husband spoke up. I couldn’t. A tear made its way down my cheek.

When we got home I scoured the internet. I found our local online paper. The headline read “County Santa Will Return to the North Pole.” I was crushed. But he was getting older. His health wasn’t as good. And he just couldn’t keep up the hours anymore. He had been doing it for 13 years from 6pm until 8pm every night between Thanksgiving and Christmas. The article showcased parent after parent talking about all he meant to their child’s vision of Christmas and to our community.  He truly was Santa to all of us.

Santa is not about commercialism. He’s not about greed. He’s about giving for the sake of making someone else’s eyes light up. He’s about wonder and imagination. He’s about love and kindness. And if you’re looking, you will see him. He may not be dressed up in a red suit. His beard may not have grown in. You will find his spirit in every act of generosity and grace during this wonderful season. But you have to be willing to suspend your cynicism. You have to be willing to accept gifts without the expectation of something in return. To my knowledge, Santa doesn’t discriminate. As long as you believe, the gifts will come. Some are wrapped. Some are not. Some are obvious gifts. Some you realize as a gift only later.

 But Santa is real. If only you believe.

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Filed under children, Holiday

Almost Wordless Wednesday

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Filed under funny, Marriage

Tunes for Tuesday – The Show

It’s no secret here – I didn’t have an idyllic childhood. It wasn’t horrid. But it was far from perfect. And it has skewed my view on what’s normal. I remember in my early twenties one of my sisters was bitching (for lack of a better word because that’s all she was doing) about my parents and blaming them for how she turned out and all the bad “luck” in her life. I told her to grow up. She was a twenty year old adult. It’s not like our parents sat in their cozy bed one night, maniacally rubbed their hands together and said, “Let’s procreate and really screw up some kids!” They did the best they could with their limited skills. If you don’t like something about your life then change it. But quit the blame game. Needless to say, that particular sister and I didn’t speak for a while and to this day we’re not close.

Fast forward twenty years and despite that sage advice I still struggle with my relationship (or lack of relationship) with my parents. This song speaks to me in ways I’m sure the songwriters never intended…..

“I’m just a little bit caught in the middle
Life is a maze and love is a riddle
I don’t know where to go, can’t do it alone
I’ve tried and I don’t know why” – I believe in therapy. It has made me a stronger person, a better wife and a much better parent. It helps me put things in perspective and sort what is real from what is imagined. It helps me to solve the riddles and make it through the maze. I used to be ashamed, embarrassed that I needed this kind of help. Now, I proudly go for my tune-ups. Because that’s all I need right now. Thank goodness.

“I’m just a little girl lost in the moment
I’m so scared but I don’t show it” – My friends have called me Super Mom. One friend wished aloud that she had my “Barney voice.” (Although for the life of me, I’m not sure that was a compliment even though she insists it was!) But I am just struggling through like the rest of you. Only I’m one of those who had a horrible example to draw from. I’m petrified that someday I will be estranged from my children – these amazing souls whom I adore. I wait for the next shoe to drop, the next mis-step that will send them running to the Oprah show (thank God she’s retiring next year!) I’m panicked that my daughter and I will end up just like my mother and I, distant and reduced to shallow interaction.

“I can’t figure it out, it’s bringing me down
I know I’ve got to let it go and just enjoy the show” – My therapist once said to me, before an upcoming, much dreaded encounter with my parents, to sit back and pretend I’m watching a play. Be an audience member – not an actor on the stage. And just observe. No pressure to react or respond. Just observe. What amazing advice for me. The pressure it relieved.

“The sun is hot in the sky just like a giant spotlight
The people follow the signs and synchronize in time
It’s a joke nobody knows, they’ve got a ticket to the show” – And it’s all a show out there. Every uncomfortable situation, every dysfunctional family event – it’s just a show. For all of us. You can engage if you want to. Or you can sit back and observe. It’s your choice.

“I know I’ve got to let it go and just enjoy the show
Just enjoy the show, just enjoy the show” – This is the work I do. My role with interactions with my parents is to observe. Don’t get sucked into their crap. Don’t engage if it’s not productive, honest or real. Sit back and enjoy the show.

“I want my money back, I want my money back
I want my money back, just enjoy the show
I want my money back, I want my money back
I want my money back, just enjoy the show” – And this is my private little joke. This part of the song? It’s my ring tone for them. When they call my cell (once – since I made it their ringtone last winter) this part of the song is what I hear. There have been times when I’ve wished for a do-over for my childhood. But I always come back to this – if I hadn’t gone through what I did I wouldn’t be the woman I am today. And I like who I am. Warts and all.

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Filed under Growing Up, Lessons Learned, Music

Seeing the Good or Seeing the Greed – It’s All a Matter of Choice

I read an article by a published author I was familiar with. For the life of me I can’t remember who it was, where I read it or even the specific details (sorry, childbirth combined with motherhood with a little sleep deprivation thrown in will do that to you.) But I want to share with you the gist of the story. If anyone out there recognizes it (I read it in a November issue of some magazine) please tell me so I can give proper credit – and amend the details since I’m sure to get some things wrong. So, I’m paraphrasing here, and embellishing to fill in what I’ve forgotten but here is basic premise…….

A woman was on a bus ride to some major city out east (New York, Boston – I already told you I don’t remember). She wanted to relax, get work done (it doesn’t matter) but she was being distracted by a sweet, yet mildly annoying little girl. The girl was traveling with her grandmother. They were of modest means. She had pleasant conversation with them. The bus arrived at their destination and they parted ways.

But she realized she left her laptop behind. She went back. She couldn’t find it. The grandmother and granddaughter were still there and helped her look. To no avail. She filed a report and went on her un-merry way. Walking to her next destination she tried to hail a cab – difficult. The cab driver she gets is grumpy. She looks out to the street and it’s filthy. Is sanitation on strike? She sees bums and prostitutes. She wonders why in the world anyone would want to live in this horrid city.

Then she gets a call on her cell. Someone has found her laptop and turned it in. She races back to the bus depot or the home of the finder (I already told you I can’t remember the details – geez!) The grandmother and granddaughter found it. They recognized it when they saw a man holding it, walking away from the bus depot. The grandmother shouted, “Hey! That laptop isn’t yours.” Scared, the man dropped it and ran away. The author, grateful, tries to give her a reward. The grandmother won’t take it.

The author gets back in the cab, jubilant. She strikes up a friendly conversation with the cab driver. She looks out the window and sees how pretty the streets look decorated with Christmas lights. She notices the great variety of stores and is happy to see so many “Mom and Pop” shops still thriving. She sees a sweet family, pushing a stroller down the street. They look so happy to be living is such a wonderful city.

Perspective. We can create it. We can change it. Our moods can be dependant on it. Or we can shift perspective to dictate our mood. But it’s our choice. It truly is. The city hadn’t changed miraculously between losing her laptop and finding her laptop. Her perspective had. If it can shift that rapidly based on circumstance, it can shift just as quickly if we choose.

I used to be annoyed with how early Christmas items and decorations would appear in the stores. I cursed capitalism and greed. But somewhere along my life’s journey I started getting wrapped up (giggle) in the holiday momentum and I didn’t care how early it appeared.

Where I grew up there was a radio station that played a Christmas song every evening at 7:00pm to help keep the Christmas spirit alive all year long. I loved that idea! I no longer put away my Christmas cds (and it is quite the collection) because I listen to them all year round. As soon as the stores start putting up their Christmas decorations I notice a shift in people. I notice more smiles. Instead of good-bye, people say “Have a happy holiday!” Clerks and cashiers strike up conversation with “Are you ready for the holidays?” Invitations may appear in the mail. Friends keep me up to date with new pictures of the kids tucked in Christmas cards.

I’m reading many posts out there talking about how cranky everyone gets this time of year. How greedy stores are. How pushy and mean other shoppers can be. Honestly, I don’t see it. Really. We are now smack dab in the middle of the holiday rush and I haven’t seen one act of evil, one greedy advertisment, one cranky person. I’ve only witnessed cheerfulness and fun. I’m not saying the evil doesn’t exist. I just haven’t seen it. And maybe it’s because I choose not to see it. Frankly, I don’t want to know what the reason is. I just want to enjoy the bliss of not knowing.

I choose to enjoy this time of year. I choose to see the fun and the good. I see people helping each other. Our local soup kitchen always has an overflow of volunteers at this time of year. We have so many people offering help we actually turn people away. I see more smiles. I see joy in my children’s eyes anticipating the surprises ahead. I see the thrill my husband gets when he thinks he’s found the perfect gift for me and he can’t wait for me to open it. Church parking lots are more full with people remembering the reason why we’re celebrating. More people give money at this time of year.

It’s a time of giving. A time of sharing. A time of love. That’s what I choose to see during the holiday season. And the choice is all mine.

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Filed under Be-Causes, Soapbox

In the News – Whaaaaa?

I’ll never forget when my parents moved to a small town just after retirement and my father opened up the local paper. Front page news – Man Indicted In Puppy Abuse Case. Now abusing puppies is a horrible, despicable thing. This man ran a puppy mill and the poor animals lived in horrid conditions. But my father had just moved from the murder capital of the world. “Now this is where I want to live, ” he said, “Where the worst you see in the headlines is puppy abuse and everyone is up in arms.”

There are days that I avoid reading the news. I just don’t want to know what’s out there. I remember a journal entry I wrote just after my daughter arrived. I wrote “I haven’t seen the news in days. I haven’t read a newspaper. I saw something on t.v. last night. It seems there’s something huge going on in the Middle East and we’re in the middle of it. But I have no idea what it is and I really don’t care.” To this day I have no idea what I was talking about because the Gulf War had ended.

What I find startling is the fact that as soon as my child arrived I tuned out the world. This is/was so against my nature. I was a news junkie in college. The university I went to was huge. The campus was massive. Many days it made no sense to run back and forth between my apartment and campus between classes. So I went to the library. And because I’m the master at procrastination, instead of doing homework I’d read newspapers. And a lot of ’em. On any typical day I would read, scan, peruse the school paper (which was a daily), the local paper, two major papers from the largest city in the state and one major paper from out-of-state, usually The New York Times. I loved finding the different takes on world events based on whether the paper was conservative or liberal. I like analyzing why one paper chose to include certain information, why another would leave it out. Who got the best quotes? Which story broke first?

But then children. And three of them. I have little time to scan 5 newspapers a day. But I have the internet! And you wouldn’t believe what’s out there today! C’mon, I’ll show you…..

HIV-Positive Man Injects Sleeping Wife – I’m a deep sleeper. This scares me. Thank goodness my husband doesn’t have HIV.

Bill O’Reilly Outraged By Law & Order Episode – Seriously? This is news? Bill O’Reilly = Conservative. And as much as I don’t like over-the-top, extreme views in a medium that is supposed to be entertainment yes, Law & Order = Liberal.  And Bill O’Reilly is surprised?

Blair: I Would Have Removed Saddam Hussein Anyway – Ok. This isn’t shocking news. It’s just good to see that Blair doesn’t switch rhetoric to appease the climate.

Americans Arrested in Pakistan Had Bright Futures – And in the very first sentence they’re described as “wholesome.” Wholesome? Since when is a jihad wholesome?

Jon Stewart Calls Out Gretchen Carlson For “Dumbing Herself Down” – Good for him. Apparently, she ‘admits’ to googling the words ‘ignormous’ and ‘czar,’ trying to appear as if she’s just another mom trying to make sense of this crazy world. Apparently, she has a degree from Stanford and is a classically trained violinist. First of all, us moms out here? We’re not stupid…OR ignoramouses. Second? Oh forget…I’ve lost interest.

Chinese Man Gets Remote Control Stuck in Bottom After Drunk Prank –  There are even x-rays to prove it! I’m not kidding!

So there you have it. Top stories of the day. And you’ll notice I left out the plethora of Tiger Woods stories still circling. That news was so…….yesterday.

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Filed under Soapbox

Some Things Are More Important

I read a post yesterday by Kristen over at Motherese that reminded me of a great lesson I learned years ago before children. My mother was obsessively clean. One day, I came home from a date. We had gone to a basketball game at the local university and when he dropped me off at home my mother was down at the street scrubbing the curb with a scrub brush. I raced past her into the house, knowing my date had noticed but pretending I didn’t know her. When it was safe to venture outside I asked her, “Why are you scrubbing the curb?” She told me that it was dirty. I laughed and said, “That’s what street cleaners (the big trucks – not the people!) are for.”

She said, with a straight face and all honesty, “But they don’t do a good enough job.”

That, my friends, is what I grew up with. Our house always looked like we were expecting royalty. Everything scrubbed. Everything shiny. Anything with the slightest bit of wear was tossed and replaced. I vowed never to be like that.

And then, I moved out on my own.

I lived with roommates during college and it drove me crazy. They would leave dishes in the sink. Never vacuum. The bathroom? Ick.

I could finally afford my own place. Heaven.

I had a place for everything and everything in its place. Before I moved in I scrubbed like I’ve never scrubbed before. From that moment on, every speck of dirt was mine. And I’d would always clean it before it could set up permanent residence.

During my neat freak days I married – another fellow neat freak – and we lived happily. And then I met Erin. We had so much in common. We were like long-lost sisters. We read the same books. We both taught at the same school. We went to movies and school functions together.

One Saturday, our plans changed. Her husband had to go into the office and couldn’t watch the kids. Would I like to come over to her house? Sure. We could visit while the kids played. I had never been to her home before. She had toddler twins and our excuse was always to get her out of the house.

I showed up. Punctual. (That trait came along with my tidiness) I knocked on the door. “Come in!” a voice called from inside. I walked in. The side door that I entered brought me almost immediately into the kitchen. To say I saw a mess would be an understatement. Dishes piled sky-high. Spatters on the wall. I smelled syrup and, sure enough, the mess resembled breakfast made by 3 year olds. I stuck to the floor.

“Over here!” she called from the family room. I tiptoed through the mess. There she was, sitting in the middle of the floor, with two little cherubs on either side of her. They were swimming in a sea of every book they owned. There wasn’t a place for me to step. I stood at the doorway, confused. As I had been gingerly tiptoeing through her home I was thinking, am I here on the wrong day? wrong time? This is the first time I’ve come to your home. You’d think she’s pick up a little.

My thoughts were interrupted. “I’m sorry about the mess, ” Erin said, “But every since these little angels arrived, ” and she kissed them each on top of the head, “I’ve learned that there are some things that are more important.”

From that moment on – I was cured.

(Oops! I almost forgot. Happy Hanukkah to all my friends who celebrate this wonderful holiday!)

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Filed under children, Lessons Learned, Motherhood

A Very Merry Unbirthday To YOU!

After reading some of the comments to my self-indulgent post last week celebrating MY birthday I started to feel a little sad. I realized there are many people out there that don’t share my wide-eyed, Pollyanna approach to birthdays. But why not? We should all have people in our lives that celebrate our very existence. And especially around the anniversary of the day we stepped onto this wonderful planet. If we don’t have people in our lives that do this – then we should do it ourselves!

Call me self-indulgent. Call me self-centered. Call me crazy. Call me Jane. (Ah, I just made myself giggle. I crack myself up!) The day we took our first breath on this beautiful place we call Earth was a miraculous day, indeed. For each and every one of us. You owe it to yourself and your friends and family to live it up! Stretch out the celebration as long as you can. For yourself and for those you love. If you have 52 immediate  family members then you get to celebrate all year long! How cool is that?

Turning 30, for me, was a piece of cake. Turning 40, not so bad either. But when I turned 41, I was a little blue. But then I remembered, I’ve earned every single wrinkle, every gray hair, every single jiggle. Badges of honor I like to call them. And the wisdom I’ve gained – immeasurable. Oh sure, I have things I wish I’d done differently. But no regrets. If I had done things differently I wouldn’t be who I am today. I wouldn’t be where I am today.

Celebrating our lives, every day, is a good thing. Pulling out all the stops around our birthday is a great thing. Frankly, I’ve always felt sorry for those of certain faiths (not naming any names and please save your comments preaching to me – I’ll just plug my ears and sing La, la, la, la, la, la) that don’t celebrate birthdays. Marking the day that you made it in one piece (hopefully) all the way around the sun – again! – is such a fabulous miracle. A gift. It doesn’t happen for everyone – really, just open the obituary page in your newspaper. Young. Old. People die every year. I didn’t, this time around. I’m here again for my children, my husband, my family, my friends. And that’s a fantabulous, spectacuwonderfully, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious thing.

So, today I’m giving you permission to celebrate YOU. And you, and you and even YOU! Let’s all have a very, merry un-birthday celebration today. And if it really is your birthday today, well – Happy Birthday! You couldn’t have chosen a more wonderful day to be born!

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Filed under Holiday

Wordless Wednesday – Not Wordless, I Know But I Just Couldn’t Resist

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Filed under funny, Observations

Tunes for Tuesday – The Impression That I Get

My sister taught me a beautiful phrase: “Be kinder than necessary for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.” As brilliant as she is she doesn’t take credit for it. It’s a combination of quotes by James M. Barrie (Peter Pan playwright) and Plato. A wonderful phrase that I remind myself of often.

My sunny attitude. My glass half-full approach. I know it can be irritating. Annoying, even. I know I’ve lost some readers based on my posts and comments. And while I do feel down from time to time it doesn’t happen very often. There are times when I wish I was a bit more balanced. Could see through to reality. I’d avoid disappointment that way. But I know myself too well – and I’m not changing any time soon.

“Have you ever been close to tragedy
Or been close to folks who have
Have you ever felt a pain so powerful
So heavy you collapse” – My mother was an intensive care nurse. If we had a splinter, she showed us someone with a broken arm. If we had a broken arm, she’d show us someone with leukemia. Someone out there always had it worse than us. Now that approach certainly didn’t validate the pain we were in (and there’s enough fodder for a whole other post). But it did show us it could be worse.

“Have you ever had the odds stacked up so high
You need a strength most don’t possess
Or has it ever come down to do or die
You’ve got to rise above the rest” – Some of you out there are struggling with such pain. Physical. Mental. Financial. Struggles you keep private. Struggles you blog about to get off your chest. Illnesses that won’t leave your bodies. Depression that comes with the holidays. I want to be there to listen. I want to send hugs to all of you. I hate suffering, which is why I’m such a terrible nurse.

“I’m not a coward,
I’ve just never been tested
I’d like to think that if I was,
I would pass
Look at the tested and think there but for the grace go
I might be a coward,
I’m afraid of what I might find out” – I’ve had my fair share of struggle or pain. I lived a dysfunctional childhood that crept into my adulthood. But I turned out okay. But real tragedy? “There, but by the grace of God, go I.” (John Bradford) I feel so lucky sometimes. No, a lot of the time. I know my life is easy compared to some. And selfishly, secretly, I hope it continues. I don’t want to discover the coward I really am.

“I’ve never had to knock on wood
But I know someone who has
Which makes me wonder if I could” – I knock on “wood” all the time. I knock on my head. It makes people laugh. While they’re searching for wood to knock I offer them my head. I tease about my own ignorance of the woes of the world. I purposely don’t focus on local news anymore. I live near a major, metropolitan city. Murders. Gang violence. Drugs. I don’t need to clutter my pretty little head with that stuff. “Where ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise.” (Thomas Gray)

“I’ve never had to knock on wood
And I’m glad I haven’t yet
Because I’m sure it isn’t good
That’s the impression that I get” – So, no. I’ve never really HAD to knock on wood. But my heart goes out to those of you who have.  I’ve lived a pretty lucky life. I do my best to help those who haven’t. And during this happy (for me) holiday season I have become acutely aware from all the reading I’ve been doing in Blog World that if you truly have to knock on wood there is some deep pain going on. Without sounding too much like a beauty queen I’m wishing and praying for all of you out there to be at peace. To find and treasure the joy around you. To have quiet minds and healthful bodies. I am who I am – so you’re still going to see sunshine and roses here on most days. But please know I am aware of the struggles out there. I’m just doing what I can to help share some of my joy.

The Impression That I Get – by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones

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