Welcome to Life Through Bifocals
Life is not always clear and easy to figure out. So grab a cup of coffee and your bifocals and let's see what we can see.
Friday, December 21, 2012
I'm Still Here - Are You?
According to the Mayan Calendar the world ended for the upper right half of the USA at 6:11 a.m. this morning. Well, I'm still here.
The Bible is very clear about when the world will end and it cannot be determined by man.
"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.
So I'm celebrating life today by going to work where my boss is throwing us a Christmas Party. She is full of life and fun and doesn't mind one bit if we say "Merry Christmas", "Happy Holidays", or "Happy Chunakah" (she's Jewish). She lives life to help others, to laugh, to love, and give back in any way she can. I know we will have fun and laugh about us all being there.
As we get closer to Christmas, enjoy the ones you love. Think of each day as a gift - because it is. Think of others before you think of yourself and remember, some day the world will really end - are you ready to meet God! If not, let's talk about it!
Merry Christmas to all from us!
Thursday, December 20, 2012
As our little 4 foot Christmas tree sits atop of our toy cabinets, it glows in the dark room. As I look at it I see 20 small wooden painted Christmas decorations.
Back in 1972 we lived in New Mexico. Hubby was in the Air Force and we were stationed in Albuquerque NM. We had been there only about a mouth and didn't have a Christmas tree. Our neighbor, also in the Air Force had 2 small silver trees. Remember those?
|Photo from Google|
She didn't have any decorations to share however. Hubby and I went Christmas shopping. It was going to be our first Christmas as man and wife and our last Christmas as man and wife at the same time, since our son was due at any time. All of our money was going into getting the nursery ready.
We found this paint by number Christmas decoration kit and we bought it. We made a big bowl of soup, hot cocoa and laid out newspaper on the kitchen table. We painted the wooden decorations and then using rope, attached them to the tree.
It was our first Christmas together. We had a nice meal, visited with others in our off base housing unit, relishing in the fact that it was December and I wasn't wearing a coat since it was so warm. Within 6 days, we had our son.
Over the last 40 years, those little wooden painted figures have been put on each and every tree that we put up. Over the last 40 years, I look at them and smile about all we have been through as a couple, as a family, as a nation.
It's a simple thing that always warms my heart. I love our little wooden decorations. They have aged over the years. The paint has worn off in some spots and run in other spots. You may even say that the years were not so good to some of them.....just like me some days.
Do you have a special decoration that you put out and remember.......
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Oh Hodgepodge Time, Oh Hodgepodge Time, you are so very Loverly
1. How will you spend 'the night before Christmas'?
We will be home that day but at 10pm we will join others of our church for a special service at church. We did this this last year and it was wonderful. I'm looking forwarded to it again.
2. What is one thing you are not?
I am not a good GPS! I can't find my way out of the mall and find my car some days!
3. Fudge-are you a fan? Your favorite flavor?
Yes fan, but living low carb, I have to really plan for it. I love it with nuts and peanut butter is my favorite.
4. Did you attend any craft/vendor fairs in the month of December? Do you prefer homemade goodies or the more professional stalls? Are you giving any homemade gifts this year?
I did not attend any craft/vendor fairs this month. I love homemade gifts and am giving some this year.
5. What's your favorite type of holiday gathering?
Weddings are my favorite. Young love, a bright future, seeing people I haven't seen in a while. I love it all.
6. We're approaching a new year...what's going to be different in 2013?
Haven't much thought about it too deeply but I plan of looking for more things to laugh about, more people to show love to, and more to be grateful about. I think we all need some of that now.
7. Share a favorite scripture, quote, saying, or song lyric relating to peace.
Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. [Psalms 34:14]
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a Good Night
Now it's your turn.
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Make a Wish
Some weeks, it's just hard to write a blog. You have the stories, you have the words, but circumstances beyond your control take over and any blog you write just seems trivial.
The events of last week have done that for me. I want to talk about the snow we got yesterday and the 2 other snow events coming our way.
I want to talk about the decorations that we put up and some of the memories that I have when I look at them.
But all I can think of is Newtown, Connecticut and the pain that they are going through.
Then Hubby and I went out for a drive and came across a house that was doing something worth blogging about.
It began as a High School Senior project and grew. He had 30,000 lights on his house that took him a long time to set up. Joshua Letourneau collects donations outside as people stop to look, take pictures and enjoy the lights and music. We stopped, looked, took pictures, donated and talked to the young man for a bit.
He gives all the money he earns to the Make-A-Wish Foundation Chapter to help others get one last wish. How kind is that. At this time when so many want, want, and want, he gives his time, he gives his energy, he gives the money away. He's been doing this for a few years and he has paid for all the decorations himself. He keeps not one penny for all he collects for his time.
Somehow, this story needed to be told. It seems more important to me to tell this story than a story about our wooden decorations and their story.
Fulfill a wish, donate time or money, hug a kid, kiss a spouse and say a prayer.
It will do more good than any gift you may give or get.
Monday, December 17, 2012
The One Blue Light
We don't put lights in the windows here. Well, we don't put white lights in our windows here. In fact, we only put one light in one window...one blue light.
It's not for the military, and it's not for the King of Kings. It's for all the police officers who will not celebrate Christmas this year. Not because they are working, or are overseas, but because they gave the ultimate sacrifice and died this year.
There are lots of YouTube videos of police officers working. Many of those videos don't show the good that they do. The videos show part of what I know must have been a long interaction and the policeman may not come across as the good guy.
But they are the good guys. They run into buildings, not know what is waiting for them. They enter homes where they know abuse is taking place. They invade homes where drugs are being made and used. They stop cars of those who are drunk and again have no idea where that will end up. Where others run away, they run in. They show up at car accidents and find out the teens in the car are not going to graduate and they have to tell the parents. They protect the innocent, help the helpless, and many times, they are not even thanked, but instead sworn at and attacked.
They will live the rest of their lives with the faces of those teens in their heads. They choose to keep them there. It motivates them to work harder to slow down the teen, get the drunk off the road, protect the spouse from abuse and get those drugs off the street.
Many will never go home. The dream of a long life ends in a heart beat. Another police officer will go to the family to tell them, that their police officer will not come home anymore.
So we put one blue light in the windowto honor their memory and to remind us that many police officers will not be home to see their children open gifts. They will not sing Christmas songs, or go to Midnight Worship or grow old. But, because of their sacrifice, others will.
I am not in any way trying to minimize what happened to the families in Connecticut last week. Those parents of those babies will hurt and cry and forever be changed, as will their entire community. They will never understand the evil that took the lives of those babies and those teachers who tried to protect them, shielding them with their very own bodies. Everyone lost that day. Everyone will suffer for a very long time.
I just wanted to remember the police officers who walked in those classrooms and who will forever have the photos of those babies in their minds and the photos of those teachers and administrators in their minds. All those precious bodies, all that blood, all that mess will forever change them. No, no police officers died that day, but they ran into the building, knowing that they could.....
So we put out our one blue candle......
Hug your family.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Thank you Joyce for taking time out of your busy week to come up with this weeks questions. Come play.
Can you believe it's 12/12/12! I wonder who will be born at 12:12? Now that would be impressive!
1. So, when did you last take a walk in the woods? A stroll along the beach? A drive going nowhere in particular in the car?
We drove around last week to look at other people's homes and Christmas decorations. What fun.
2. Are you sending Christmas cards this year? About how many do you send? Photo card or something more traditional? How do you display the cards you receive?
Yes, we mail some and hand out most at Church and work. I make the cards and every year we display them differently so I guess we are still looking for the perfect way to do so. We decided to do this this year.
A ribbon down the middle of the kitchen cabinets, then the cards are taped to the ribbon. So far I like it.
3. What's a word you've heard too much of in the past week?
I can't think of anything that I heard too much of this week. Sorry.
4. December 13th is National Cocoa Day-are you a fan? Plain or flavored? Marshmallows or no marshmallows?
I do like hot cocoa but I like it either plain or caramel hot cocoa with mini marshmallows (however in a pinch I like Fluff)
5. What is something you do to help alleviate the hectic pace of the Christmas season?
Watch a Hallmark Christmas movie. There are lots to pick from. Add a nice cup of tea or cocoa and relaxing just happens.
6. Besides jewelry, what's a favorite sparkly-glittery item in your home or closet?
I have a bling iPhone case that I like.
7. Share a favorite line or two from any Christmas carol.
"God bless us, EVERYONE" Hubby's favorite is "BAH! Humbug!"
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Last week I blogged about not putting up lights outside. Well, this week, Hubby did just that. He decorated a tree and added a few deer to the side yard. So we officially have outside lights now. No idea when he will take it all down. March?
During the day, it looks like this.
At night, like this
Ok your turn, how would you answer the questions?
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
OK I'm Hooked and I blame Kim.
Kim is a wonderful friend of mine. She has a love of God, love of family, love of friends and a really good cook who has talked about this for a while. She finally got me to try it and I must say, Kim has good taste!
It's Spaghetti Squash. It's so easy to make there are several ways to make it. Since we had lots of time and I love having the oven on when the temperature dip low we cut it in half, scraped out the seeds, and placed it in a baking dish and popped it in the oven for about an hour.
Then it was just pull the "spaghetti" out of the shell and enjoy.
The shell, itself is really thin so there is a lot of Spaghetti in these things.
I added just a bit of real butter and a pinch of brown sugar twin (really didn't need it) and combined with Hubbies meat stuffing, it was the perfect meal.
And today's lunch as well.
So thank you Kim. I will be making it again...
Have you ever made Spaghetti Squash and if so, how do you cook it.. Now I want to try the other ways to make it.
Funny how something so simple can be so wonderful. And It's Low Carb!!!!
Monday, December 10, 2012
A Weekend to Remember
It's really starting to look and feel like Christmas around here. No, we don't have snow but we do have some sleet, freezing rain, which makes for some crunchy, frozen grass to walk on so it sounds like Christmas.
Saturday, we had our Church Christmas Party and with about 60 of us packed into one of the members home (not ours!) it was cozy and lots of fun.
The host had more than one tree so this one was right inside the front door to greet you. It was so festive to walk in and see this.
With most things "Church Related" there was food......lots of great food!
This was just one of the dessert tables! I really was proud of myself for staying away from this table until, at the end of the evening, the host told me she made fudge with chocolate and Velveta cheese. Well, somehow that combination just called to me and I had to try it.. It was just delish.
Sunday, we finally got our decorations going. We have a long way to go but we did make a dent in it. My energy was down a bit and so we didn't get a lot done, but we did put up our little tree.
It's four feet tall and sits on a toy cabinet. I was surprised just how many decorations I was able to hang on it. We are going to downsize some of the decorations this year. Later today, I hope we get more decorations up around the house.
How about you. Do you decorate the entire house or just put up a tree and that it's? How do you display the Christmas Cards you receive? I'm always looking for a different way to display them.
Friday, December 7, 2012
We Are Starkers! Are You?
Do you put lights up on the outside of your house? When do you put them up and then when do you take them down?
We don't put up outside lights. I don't really know why except it's cold up here although putting them up may not be too bad, taking them down in sub-zero temps is just not going to happen and leaving them up until Spring, just seems silly.
So we drive around and look at others lights. Do you do that as well? Do you listen to Christmas music while you do that?
We like some.....
We love others......
And we are glad we don't live anywhere near a few.....
But we just about comment on all of them.
Here are a few photos of what we saw just in our area the other night.
One house had all white lights which is very nice.
But I really like the houses with colored lights.
One house had just a few lights in the windows. This photo doesn't do the house justice as it was simple and elegant.
While others light up the yard more than the house.
Where do you stand on the whole house lighting issue? Do you like it?
Do you light up just the house or the yard as well?
White or colored lights?
Do you add music to the lights?
Do you light up the front and back or just the front?
I'm still looking for the "Over-the-top" house but so far, none are in our neighborhood.
I'm thankful for that.
Have a Blessed weekend and I'll see you Monday, Lord Willing...
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
It's a Wednesday Christmas Hodgepodge
1. Share your traditions surrounding the Christmas stocking.
We hang our stockings on the mantle and they get filled with small things for us and our "kids", a.k.a. our dogs. Christmas Eve we open 1 gift, and our stockings. We open the other gifts on Christmas Morning.
2. How many hours of sleep do you average at night? Is it enough?
I get a lot of sleep!! Often 9 or 10 hours with a nap in the afternoon. Yes that is a lot but it's all good! For now, I need all that sleep so it is enough and my doctor is fine with it.
3. If you had to give up one thing for the remainder of this year what would it be?
Well, if I had to give up something, and clearly I get to pick the thing I'm giving up...... it will be laundry and I would just be fine with giving it up.
4. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (or Wills and Kate as I like to call them) have announced they're expecting a baby. Do you follow news of the Royals?
I love keeping up with the Royals! I am so happy for them and pray that Kate will be well throughout the pregnancy. I just so enjoy watching the kids grow up and remember watching Diana's wedding... So to watch her two sons become men and fathers in their own right will be so much fun.
5. For me, the sound of childhood is beautiful, fun, exciting and a gift from God.
6. Fruit cake-yay or boo? What's your favorite dessert made with fruit?
BOO. I wonder how long that fruit cake has been around both in terms of how long it's been in the cabinet and how many people re-gifted it.
I really like any fruit pies, or upside down cakes, or, in the fall and winter, fruit cobbler!! Bring it all on!!
7. What is one thing you want to accomplish before 2012 comes to an end?
I still need/want to get the rugs shampooed. They are usually done by now but as of today, they are not done!! I really need to get on that...maybe the weekend..
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I know that I have not been blogging a lot the last few weeks. I am so glad that I got the Christmas shopping done early because I would not have the time to get it done now. I have been working full time, sewing gifts, making Christmas cards, caring for August who was neutered last week and sleeping. Did you see my answer to #2! I hope to be back at it soon. I do miss blogging about our lives here in the upper right hand corner of the USA. I just run out of time.
Ok so now it's your turn to answer Ready, Set Go! Remember the Elf of the Shelf is watching.....
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Christmas Hodgepodge minus 4 weeks.
1. With that being said I think I need to dive right in to some Christmas related questions, don't you? Which do you prefer-pretty gift wrap with a bow or a pretty gift bag with/without a bow? What percentage of your holiday gifts are currently (as in right this very minute) wrapped in some form or fashion?
I really like the bows but a gift of pretty paper is also nice. So I guess the answer is I don't really care. I have 0% of the gifts I have bought wrapped.
2. What is one item on your Christmas list this year?
Circular knitting needles size 10
3. What makes a home?
God who is the head of the household will make any house a home.
4. Motown founder Berry Gordy celebrates his birthday on Hodgepodge Day-November 28th. Are you a fan of the Motown sound? If so, who's your favorite Motown artist and/or song? Here's a list in case you're stuck.
I grew up with Motown and love anything from the Supremes or the Temptations.
5. Red or green-which one is more prevalent in your closet?
Green. It reminds me of grass and summer and heat, and leaves on trees. I love green - but my kitchen has lots of red!
6. True or false-bacon makes it better? If you answered true, what's your favorite dish made with bacon?
Bacon is a low carber's friend. Anything goes with bacon. Chicken, hamburgers, eggs, and of course more bacon.
7. Share a favorite holiday memory.
Many years ago when Hubby was in the Air Force, we were stationed in New Mexio and our son was just about a year old. We had Christmas with friends and made Lazagna because we didn't have the money for Turkey and all the fixins. It was the first time we would have Lazagna for Christmas. The other woman made it and she used so much cheese that when we cut it we each got a "Brick of Lazana" with our salad. I loved being outside for Christmas. I loved having the windowns open for Christmas. I loved having Lazagna Brick for Christmas.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Monday morning our little dog August Rush went into the vets and got neutered. He is 15 months old and has gleened all he would have gleened from the growth hormones and since I have no desire to have puppies and he wants to make love to any leash he comes near, he went in to see the vet.
He was wearing a donut cone but was able to get around it to lick himself so he is wearing both the donut and the cone to keep his head away from where it wants to be. I love this little guy and hope he gets better soon. In the photo above he was curled up next to his sister sleeping .
So now it's your turn, answer the questions either on Joyce's site or here, but let's visit around and enjoy the stories.
Monday, November 26, 2012
|Our first Christmas Card|
Our daughter likes the brunch as it gives her time to eat at 2 different houses and not have to be rolled home at the end of the day.
So brunch it is.
Eggs, bacon, sausage, fruit salad, sliced turkey, meat stuffing, rolls and coffee. Easy meal, fun times, and hubby doesn't have to leave to go to work, or leave to get some sleep (unless you count sleeping after all that turkey).
What a wonderful Thanksgiving we had.
Good food, laughter, little ones to play with, love to share.
How was your Thanksgiving?
I avoided the whole Black Friday shopping frenzy but we did go out later in the day, after the rush had died out and did some shopping but not so much for Christmas as for every day items that we ran out of. On our way into town to shop, We saw this
The remainder of the weekend was spent on making Christmas cards, sewing Christmas gifts and staying warm as it's mighty cold up here! The temps have been up in the 30's and low 40's but with Arctic air blowing, it feels like the teens! Bundle up people and let me know how your weekend was.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
One Turkey of a Wednesday Hodgepodge
I am thankful for the Wednesday Hodgepodge and all that Joyce does to come up with the questions every week. Click the button and join the fun.
1. Turkey-love it or leave it? White meat or dark? What's your favorite thing to make using leftover turkey?
We really do love turkey and for me it's all about the white meat. As for what I do with the left overs, well there's turkey omlets the next day and of course the turkey/stuffing sandwiches.
2. Gotta burn off all those carbs the day after a holiday feast so which would you rather do-run a 10K or climb a mountain?
So you mean AFTER the nap right? Well I would rather go for a nice walk on a flat surface if it's warm enough. If not, then a walk on the treadmill in front of the tv.
3. Do you feel like social networking has made your relationships better or worse? Explain.
I have had the chance to meet a lot of people that I otherwise would never had been able to meet through social networking. I have seen plants and animals and recipies from all over the world that I would never have had the chance to see without social networking. I have seen that in many ways we are all very much alike. So I feel that my relationships have been made better.
4. How do you find and express gratitude for the hard things in your life?
In everything Give Thanks to the Lord. That means both the good things and the hard things that happens. So I give thanks to God for it all. I can learn from both.
5. In the US, the day after Thanksgiving has been dubbed 'Black Friday'. Is most of your holiday shopping done live and in person, or is it done more through the magic of the Internet? How do you feel about stores opening at midnight Thanksgiving night? Will you be out amongst the masses on Friday?
Most of our holiday shopping is done live and in person but it's done all year so that I will not have to go to the store at midnight to stand in line to save a few dollars to get someone a gift. I don't like that the store will be open at midnight but you know what? If people didn't go shopping then, the stores would not be open. People who complain should stay home, problem solved.
6. Speaking of the color black-which black item in your wardrobe would you say is your favorite?
I have a pair of black pants that is very confortable and I really like them.
7. What do you appreciate about your life today?
I have so many things that I appreciate about my life. I have a Savior who loves me and cares for me. I have a husband who takes care of me and did so while we both were ill. I have 2 children who I love with all my heart. They, in turn married people who I am proud of and proud to call them my daughter-in-law and son-in-law. I have 4 grandchildren who make me smile and are a blessing that I always longed for. I have friends who care for me and pray for me. I have 2 dogs who make me smile and let me know that as one gets older, the other will continue her work in pet therapy some day. I appreciate breathing. If you missed that post, I have asthma and breathing became a real problem. The list goes on and on.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I wish for you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. I will not be blogging tomorrow so may you have love ones around you and enjoy your day. Find something to be thankful for and share what you have with others. May God Bless you All.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Still Standing! Well, sort of.....
The beauty I get to see driving the highway! Yes, it sure is pretty.
Yup! I went to work yesterday and managed to stay right up until 1pm! By then I had managed to answer all the emails waiting for me on my computer, answered all the phone messages - with a real voice - that were waiting for me. I trained a dog and got her training notes typed up and recorded applications and payments from last week into the computer. Also worked on upcoming classes. It was a nice busy day but by 1p.m. I was ready for a nap. So I came home and took a nice long 2 hour nap. By the time I woke up Hubby was sleeping. He still has a cold and he is pretty worn out caring for me. I'm high maintenance-----------or so I'm told.
After he woke up we hit the grocery store. We haven't shopped for about 10 days so you can image that we were out of a lot of things. Important things like dog snacks.
Oh, and stuff for us as well. The store was not that busy, which was good since I was getting tired again. In, shop, and out, that was our motto for the evening.
Then we checked the mailbox. Our box is at the end of the driveway and apparently no one cared to go check it for a few days.........
Good thing we pay our bills and do most of our banking online.
There is a lot of junk mail that comes to our house over the course of a week.
By time we got home from the store, I was ready for bed so off I went (after I wrote this) and Tuesday I hope to push my work day to 2:15pm I'll let you know how that worked out.
On a different topic - the dogs have finally been sleeping on their own beds in my office as long as August takes his pillow out of the bed frame. Go figure.
On another totally different topic, because that is how my brain is working at the moment, who else is getting ready for the big meal on Thursday? What are you doing different this year from last year?
Thanks for all your care and concern. Night All.
Monday, November 19, 2012
It's been all over Facebook and Twitter and even some blogs are doing it, listing the things people are thankful for. I've seen spouses, children and pets listed. I've seen dishwashers, cars and heat listed. I've seen talents, friends and other loved ones listed.
I've been thinking about the list that I see and wonder if there was something deeper to be thankful for.
You see, if a dishwasher or car breaks down, we can either replace it, fix it or do without but our life will go on.
If our spouses, children and pets are no longer with us, we grieve, we cry, we are lost and we hurt beyond belief, but we still wake up the next day and put one step in front of the other and in our pain God is with us. I've seen God bless people with another spouse to love - my FIL was blessed to have 3 women in his life who he loved and treasured.
So as I was thinking about all of this, something happened to me to give me something to be thankful for.
Breathing.I caught a cold. A simple cold. There are a lot of colds up here and the bug is everywhere so I was bound to get it. The problem is I have asthma and when the cold hit, it aggravated my asthma and I ended up spending 4 days struggling for air. I went to work for a few hours for 3 days but always had to leave because I was so tired from just breathing. I couldn't sleep well at all because I needed to force myself to breath.
I called my doctor's office and told them that I was in no pain but that breathing was a lot of work. I was sent to Acute Care.
There I got a much needed nebulizing breathing treatment. I was sent home with 3 drugs - Prednisone, Albuteral, and cough syrup with codeine as well as a spacer (pictured above) for the abuteral. I was to use it every 2 hours to continue the breathing treatments until the wheezing stopped. It took 11 treatments every 2 hours and then another 5 every 4 hours before I could breath without thinking about it.
So I continued to struggle to breath. It was exhausting to say the least. No sleeping, feeling the weight of our atmosphere on my chest and just plain fighting for every breath. With each treatment I could feel some relief but not enough to relax and be able to sleep for rest.
It was during this time I learned what I am thankful for - Breathing.
Before this I just breathed without thinking about it. I never thought about gravity pressing against my chest making the movement of my chest harder. Never thought about the muscles needed to both inhale and exhale. Never thought about how much air it took to talk (I didn't have a voice) or cough (still had the cold) or walk up stairs or even sit up to type. I just did it. I just went to work and did my job. But for the past week I couldn't do anything well at all. Work was hard because talking on the phone took effort, talking to coworkers took way too much effort.
If you can't breath, you cannot do without like the things I mentioned above. You cannot replace the lungs easily and you can only fix them - fast!
So I am thankful for all the men and women who work to develop the medicines that make it possible to breath. I am thankful for all the research that is going on to help future people recover from and prevent asthma. I am thankful for being able to breath. And I am thankful for the lesson I learned. In all things give thanks!!
I am also thankful for a husband who took over everything. He got up and drove August to and from daycare. He did the cooking, cleaning, keeping me warm and doing it all. He has a cold now, thankfully he doesn't has asthma as well.
As I type this however, I still don't have much of a voice....Something that Hubby is thankful for.
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