I am my brothers keeper…

There are times in life that a person needs to take a stand in life and make it known most clearly, what they believe in.

Gentle reader that time has come.

I watched something most amazing last night, most amazing indeed. A person stood up and said aloud for everyone to hear that he is his brothers and sisters keeper. These words were like an arrow to my heart and they rang with incredible sincerity. He said them like there were engraved on his heart, not a platitude he was uttering to impress the masses. He said them because he believed them, pure and simple.

Therefore, today, here for all of you to see I am taking a stand as well. Those words, well engraved on my heart, are how I live my life. I feel a measure of responsibility for those who occupy this glorious earth with me. I care if you are struggling in your daily walk, if you are having an off day; I want to share with you the joy that fills my being to overflowing. I want to improve your day and share your burden. I want you to know that I will listen to what you have to say and that I have a ready shoulder if you have tears to shed. I have food that I am glad to share. I care that you might be struggling making ends meet, that you argued with your spouse or parent or child, that you did not sleep well, you lost your job, or have some battle you for which you need a cheer leader.

My care does not stop at my neighbor’s door; it extends on to the injustices of the world. It troubles me greatly knowing that there is a vast gap in how I live and how much of the world lives. How is it that I am so blessed to be here at this place and time? From the simplest of things like running water in my home to a market where an abundance of choices overwhelm me, I truly want for nothing. It humbles me that I have brothers and sisters on this earth that do not have those same privileges. I also have live in an incredibly safe place, I need not fear that someone will come and take my home from me, wrest my children from my breast, and commit unspeakable acts of violence to me because of what I say, think, and believe. I can stand in the open and publicly disagree with things my government does, I can freely email any elected official and share my opinions with them. It saddens me greatly that there are those who live on the same planet I do that do not have those same civil liberties. Yet, how often do I take those very things for granted? All too often, I am afraid, all too often. To those whom much has been given, much is expected. It is that simple.

How shallow we are as the human race that we reduce ourselves to judging one another based upon what we see, never getting to know what is beyond the exterior and truly look at those around us. We do not want to step outside our comfort zone, we avoid change, and we cling to the familiar believing that is what is right. It is neither right nor okay – it builds barriers that keep us from our true potential. That kind of attitude serves self only and is not one that fosters change and we need to change!

Because I care about all those things and more, I want you to know that I am voting next week Tuesday because I believe with all my heart that my voice does count. Yes, I am my brothers and sisters keeper and my vote will be with all of you in mind.

I hope you will join me.

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A Whole Lotta Nuthin’

Yes, Gentle Reader, that is what I have – a whole lotta nuthin’! Unfortunately, a whole lotta nuthin’ does not make for good blog fodder.

Therefore, I will just fill you in with volumes of randominity disguised as interesting and humorous anecdotes!

First off, I have been engaged in The Battle Royal with the Ex-From-Hell. Unfortunately, upon examination, I determined it to be “battle worthy” and I have picked up the gauntlet and have lobbed my first shots. No winner has yet been determined, but I am running through the briars and the brambles and not at all fighting fairly. Thank goodness, that history has showed me that this is the way to win more skirmishes!! It seems I have unwittingly taught my daughter this fighting tactic as well and she is attacking from another front. My hope is that insanity soon ensues for the Ex-From-Hell, and that he will cease and desist from his abhorrent behavior! Stay tuned for skirmish updates!

Next, I will cry in my beer a bit over having to part of a most adult decision regarding wanting things you cannot have. However, as a consolation prize I will go spend a weekend with The Divine Miss Beth and Her Majesty, Queen Abby. A weekend in Fiber Mecca is sure to be a moist affair, and that wanting I am not mature enough to avoid. While this is not a fair trade, in the scheme of things it is a nice prize for being most mature!

I have a friend who also writes a blog, and does a lovely job I might add, who challenged his readers to share something special and I have been mulling this over in my head for some hours today. This is not at all in my character to share things I have done in a most ordinary way. Yes, ordinary is exactly how I feel about things I do that others might perceive as “wow that was nice.” For me it all boils down to honesty, and if I am not honest when no one is looking, how can I expect anyone to believe I am honest when they are? Therefore, it seems simple to me, what you see is what you get. Gentle Reader, this is the me that I am when all are looking or no one is looking.

Finally, a word on the upcoming election and a shameless plug to remind you all to go vote next Tuesday, regardless of whom you will be voting for! I was driving around my hometown this week and I have to tell you all, gentle reader, the signs I saw in yards shocked me. Years past, I would have only seen signs of one flavor, the other sorely lacking. Not so, this past week, I saw a good number of signs from both party affiliations! I even heard on Michigan Radio this morning a reporter interviewing people from the Lake shore who said they were voting in a decidedly different way this election. Hope springs eternal in my heart, that change is going to happen and that I am going to see a person elected that is going to make history. It has certainly been a long road and one that I can safely say each of us are all sick! However, do not let the length of the journey diminish your excitement next Tuesday.

Have a lovely week.

With opened eyes I see…

It is a slow recovery, but I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. However, the journey has opened my eyes to things I have long taken for granted. This has caused me to think about those who have challenges to deal with every single day, for which the shining light at the end of their tunnel only shows a continuum of more of the same and a society that is ignorant of how challenging their life really is.

If I want to be out the door at a certain time, I need to start well in advance to make that deadline. Everything is an ordeal, from washing my hair to dressing, from drying my hair to brushing my teeth left handed! Grocery shopping is set up for physically able people. How do you get things off the top shelves if you cannot reach? Ever think about that? Me neither until recently. Let me tell you, it sure as hell is not easy. Moreover, it is humiliating to ask for help, how much nicer to have someone notice and offer. It amazes me how most people just do not “see” those around them. I can assure you I will be more aware of my surroundings in the future and offer assistance whenever I can!

If I find myself challenged with my minute issue how much more must it be for those who have REAL physical limitations. I am embarrassed to admit that this has never crossed my mind. I have found a new respect, Gentle Readers, for those who have challenges. I think it is sad that it took me 47 years to find it.

So, here is my challenge to all of you out there reading this, determine in your days going forward to be aware of those around you. Look for opportunities to help others. Actually think about the abundance of blessings that you have overflowing your life and look for ways to share them with the world around you. If you already do this, I commend you and challenge you to stretch yourself finding ways to do more.

What a grand and glorious world this would be were it filled with people looking for ways to help each other. Go out to your corner of the world and spread some glory; who knows, it could be contagious!

In addition, as always – have an awesome day.


The Joe’s Have It!

It is not often in life that you could find yourself in a group where fun catches like wild fire and when you do it is magical. I found myself in that very situation yesterday, and like wild fire, it quickly spread, in my favorite little world of Plurk.

You would have to be deaf, blind, and dumb (I apologize to any of you who have these ailments, I in no way mean to cast aspersions on you!!) to not know what is happening in the world of politics today. Moreover, as such, Joe Plumber achieved his 15 minutes of fame, which I am sure he regrets today!

However, yesterday in my own little corner of the world a fun and fantastic thing began to happen, one by one, names changed, and Joe’s began appearing everywhere!

It mattered not your political leaning, I am proud to announce that even some of my Aussie friends joined in the frivolity of the evening. Is it not wonderful how small the world truly is? It is nice seeing how the rest of the world views America without the media coloring it for me.

Therefore, I leave you with, in no particular order, those whom I witnessed participating in yesterday’s Joe frivolity! They honor me with their friendship! If I missed your name, I apologize profusely – there was no harm intended! Have an awesome weekend, Gentle Readers – I know I will!!

Joedesign

Joe T. Plumber

topJoesurf

JoeFounder

JoeBoomer

JoeRupeO’Neal

DingoJoe **

Joemama

HighJoeDef

Joe-smurfette

JoeAuntFlo

Joewebpenguin

JoeTheObscure

Joe Horribilis

JoeLu

JoMeanMamaBear/NotAMeanJo

Joeraven_60

AsJoeKnits

DigitalJoe

JoeInDenver

J0eC0muterPr0

Joe The Maniac

JoeTeeg

Tax – Spend Gort

JoeRoxyorHarry

Joerena

JoeCBabe

Joe Man

JoeCockerill **

JoeTorchSinger

Big Plumma

Devyl’d Plumma

JoeJewelry

JoeWrongtastic

JoeTheTranny

JoeWillFall

Onepinkjoe

Joe Bourne

JoeLotusHips

JoeHellFire

NOT-A-plumber

Joe the Sprezz

JoeplanetKnit

JoeCanuckNurse

Autumn Days

Autumn is my favorite time of the year, although a friend will remind me that the Romans found it so inconsequential that they did not even offer up a name to this brief time of the year. It is on that foot that I begin this post.

I am watching the days grow shorter and the leaves are falling all too quickly from the trees.  All it takes is a bit of rain, a dollop of wind, and before you know it, the leaves are no longer adorning the trees like vibrant tresses.  They become a carpet that cloaks the ground giving her a bit of all too soon fleeting splendor.

I love the days whether sunny and mild, or rainy and chilled.  If the sun is not shining in the sky, the trees seem to have captured her glory and radiate this glory back to us.

I love the smells and tastes of autumn as well.  Things like apple cider, pumpkin pie, the variety of squashes that smell amazing when you roast them, or a pot of chili simmering on the stove.  I enjoy walking through an apple orchard on a sun-drenched afternoon to gather a few apples, or taking a hayride through the local vineyards, enjoying the grapes before they become a tasty vintage!  In addition, can one forget the fleeting college football season that is almost over as soon as it begins!

Gentle Reader, I ask have you taken time to note that a rainy day in autumn is not quite as gloomy as it is in the other seasons.  Alternatively, have you gone out to find what makes autumn unique in your corner of the world?  I encourage you to slow down and take note of these rare occurrences because the days are fleeting in which you can do so.  Here is to wishing you a most marvelous autumn…

Useless information, IF only you knew…

I saw this on one of the many blogs I read, I am sorry – I do not remember which one.  I think it might have been on Perpstu’s weblog… but if it was not, I apologize for plagerizing!

Can you tell that I am getting more than a bit bored with the recovery process?  Just wait, by Friday you may have bruise photo’s to color your weekend!

Without further adieu, more useless information you did not know you needed to know!

If I were a liquid, I would be – effervescent water

If I were a metal, I would be – sterling silver

If I were a tree, I would be – the poem about Trees by Joyce Kilmer

If I were a fruit, I would be – a pomegranate

If I were a flower, I would be – the Lily of the Valley

If I were weather, I would be – the rainbow that shines in a rainstorm

If I were a musical instrument, I would be – a cello

If I were an element, I would be – Periodic Table #11, Na.  For without sodium life is most bland…

If I were a color, I would be – a very verdant and earthy green

If I were a feeling, I would be – excitement

If I were a food, I would be – a feast for the senses

If I were a sentence, I would be – compound – complex

There you go, feel free to take this and make it yours for your blog!  Let me know you did Gentle Reader, because you know I am dying to know all that is useless about you!

Happy Wednesday all!

A List For All Seasons…

There has been much discussion of lists lately in the halls of my favorite Social Network and one of the lists that has recently been discussed and requested was my List for Men.  Yes, gentle reader, I have a list which I am sharing with you today.  How did this list come about you ask, well read on and you will understand.  I am a girl who needs a road map to get through life, it seems.  I share with you mine…

In the strange world of dating and relationships, classify me, hands down, Slowest Learner in all of History!  One would think that if I can get “it” easily in most every other aspect of life, one would assume that I would be a quick learn in the Romance Game.

Not so, gentle reader, if I had a coach,  maybe I would not have made so many mistakes.  That being said, I did not, and so after much trial and as many errors.  I determined that I would write my own list.  Nothing concrete of inflexible, okay – maybe more than a little concrete and somewhat inflexible, but at the ripe old age of 47, it is obvious that I need a map to get where I need to go.

Thus, The List was born.

I have always been drawn to the direct opposite of me.  I would say black – they white.  Really quite interesting and effective if you are looking for someone to debate, however not a good choice for someone you want to live with for any length of time – at least if you want to have anything that resembles harmony, that is.  Now, if I had even a modicum of intelligence that I actually used, you would think that I would have figured this out, oh say, 10 years ago!! Think again, I must subscribe to the “I will keep trying until I get it right if it kills me” plan.  After the last relationship ended so poorly, I knew I did not want to hurt another person, purposely or not, by advancing through life willy-nilly.

One evening, while I was listening to some music that I liked the Epiphany occurred.  Here I was listening to something I liked, and there was no ridicule, no great debate about it…and it just clicked.

Therefore, the list begins with music.  There should be some mutual appreciation for each others musical tastes.  I am not looking for a moratorium banning anything but what I like, just equal time.  A simple start, I think.

That fed quickly to political leanings.  I was so over debating politics with anyone,  much less The Someone who might live with me.  I quickly added this to The List.  Of course, I just excluded almost the entire populous of West Michigan, but I was forging on.  So, unless you are of a liberal mindset there will not be any consideration.

That led to NPR, whom ever I would ever be involved with again needed to at least know what NPR is.  Preferably, listen – but the knowledge of intelligent radio is a start.  One think they could not do is listen to any of the Shock Jock Radio regurgitation that is being spewed out over the airwaves.

This spurred the no NASCAR rule.  Enough said.

I went along beautifully with this rudimentary list and was most satisfied with it.  However, there were things that I thought were obvious to everyone, that were not to some. So, add to the list good hygiene and teeth!  I know, who’d a thunk it??  Nevertheless, there it is!

I love to cook, so those that despise mealtime or think food should be rote need not apply either.

I would also like them to be positive, cheerful, and upbeat.  Okay, nice dream…but in reality it would be nice just to have someone who is not a complainer or negative about everything.  Attitude is not everything, but on some levels, it is.  Everything in life is a choice, ones attitude is, in my not so humble opinion, the simplest of those choices.  Quick wit and the ability to skillfully participate in verbal repartee is an added plus.

They must be unfailingly honest.  Being deceitful will earn you a one way ticket to the door, quickly.

Money and the desire for it and Things are not important to me.  I have reworked this in my own life and found it to be a marvelously freeing experience.  I have been fortunate to discover that I can live richly on little.

Therefore, basically, I have changed my course, redirecting myself towards people who have more in common with me than not.  The List, like me, is open to change.  I welcome, gentle reader, your comments and suggestions to help me as I go forward, perfecting my map for what I am looking for.