Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Sharetown Story

There once was a peaceful little town that sat at the edge of the sea. The salt air smelled fresh and clean. The sun shone bright and danced on the surface of the water. The sky was bright blue, without a cloud. Flowers bloomed in brilliant colors. It was a happy place.

The residents of  the small township of Sharetown were friendly and cordial. They smiled as they met in passing. They waved at the folks going past their homes and they spoke kindly to one another. They met together often, sharing stories and spinning their yarns.  All lived in harmony in their quiet little town, sharing what they had with one another. 

One day something strange happened. The sky was still blue, but there were some gray spots that floated against the backdrop, casting shadows on the earth below. The town folk watched to see what this was all about.  Soon, there were more spots, and the sky was over taken with gray. There were no longer shadows.  The people looked at one another, wondering what this new thing was. Very soon, they knew.

A stranger had entered the area. He had a loud, booming voice. He looked like a dragon and his name was EGO. He belched smoke from his mouth, and with every puff of smoke, color was stolen from the town. The town looked as if a big fog had rolled in off the sea.  At first the people tried to be friendly to the stranger, but he took the spinning wheels from them and spun yarns of his own.... long, bland, colorless threads.  They tried to deal with him, but he would not have it. He came in and out of the town whenever he chose to, and when he was there,  the people hid on him. They  went into their homes and lived their lives, always aware that the dragon was around. They met in each others homes and secret rooms, trying to come up with a plan that would allow harmony and peace to return to their little village. 

EGO put his nose up to the windows, attempting to see into each life that lived inside.  He strutted in the streets, roaring his head off.  With every deep breath, he grew larger.  With every puff of smoke, another tail would grow.  Soon EGO was so big  he couldn't see inside the windows. All he could see was himself. He would primp and prance in front of his reflection thinking he was so impressive.

The townspeople made a secret pact. They would  lure him with a huge mirror, placed just outside the gates of town.  They would convince him that he should take a better look at himself in that mirror. It worked!  Once  EGO saw himself in that large looking glass,  he huffed and puffed and strutted, and grew even larger!  Soon he was so big that he couldn't see all of himself in the new mirror!

The townspeople went back inside the gates and bolted them shut! The knew that EGO had grown so large that he couldn't fit through the gate, even if it was unlatched. He couldn't fit inside their town! EGO was outside! They could ignore his huffing and puffing!  Then the people realized something else. The air turned clean and clear again. The sky was blue and the sun shone on the sea. The flowers were brilliant colors again!  The people could live in peace and harmony once more!

They danced and sang and had a big party in celebration!  And life in Sharetown, at the edge of the sea, was happy once more.

Moral of the story: Sometimes what you think of yourself can give people a bad impression. If you want to fit in with others, make an effort not to take over.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sun Room

It's chilly in the sun room this morning. It's that time of year when the days later and cooler and then warm up to a comfortable temperature. It's that wonderful season when the air conditioner has been turned off, the doors and windows are flung open for the fresh air to flow freely through the house, and the heat is not turned on yet.  I love this time of year.

It is the time where we begin preparations for the winter....putting outside furnishings away, cleaning up the gardens, having the heating unit checked and serviced. For me, it's also a time of removing things from the sun porch, where I work all Spring and Summer on my craft items. Soon it will be time to close the doors that attach this room to the kitchen, for the temperatures in the unheated space get too cold to spend much time there.  We do open it again for our winter gatherings with family, but we do that days ahead of time so that it warms with the heat from the house or from the frequent use of the oven.   We do have an electric fireplace too, with adjustable temperature control which heats a crowded room enough to be comfortable.

I really miss this room, though, in the winter. It is my favorite room in the house. It's so light and bright and comfortably furnished for sitting, eating, crafting. I could live in this room. Since it is almost a 4 season room, but not quite, I see little reason to add heat to it at this point. The sun room will soon be cleaned well, and closed up, but will be opened again a few days before Christmas for the incoming family.   Ahhhh, well, the living will be done in the room intended for such action....the living room!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Things That Make You Want To Say ' Hmmmmm'

There are many mysteries in life. I would be the first to say that some of them aren't worth investigation, nor further commentary.   There are other illusive facts which, in order to satisfy a curious mind, must be searched for.  Other questions often bring answers of their own, in due time, without doing much more than keeping eyes and ears open.

The biggest mystery for me is people.  A friend recently wrote her blog regarding the question of whether nature or nurture is responsible for the differences in an adults raised in the same environment, with the same set of parents and with the same set of rules, etc.  I've no answer for that one. I tend to think it's more a matter of nature at work, than nurturing, but someone else will, undoubtedly, have a different opinion. The debate could go on for eons, and I shan't take part in that one.

People interest me. I care about them, and I find their behaviors fascinating....and frustrating.  While I may be curious as to what 'makes them tick', I know that I won't ever know the answer. What I can do is attempt to understand them.  It's not always easy, but if one does not make an effort to show kindness and try to understand, even in a frustrating situation, it will become a time of  resentment, anger, and frustration. Who needs that?

Each person ever born has been created just the way we an individual. Some are nothing like us in word, deed, personality, appearance, thinking, behavior.  Some behaviors are a short distance in make up from wild dogs, some are a speck away from angelic.  I'm not a doctor, but I am an observer and I believe that behavior can be controlled. If you watch a person who attacks, you can get an idea about them. They don't know how to temper themselves, their thoughts and tongues when they feel threatened.  Yes, they feel threatened by something. Maybe it's that their statement was debated, maybe they feel their intelligence is under question. Who knows why they choose to attack rather than discuss with an open mind? They have a point to make, and they're going to win at all costs. Such people end up losing in the end, because their ship was let float untethered, rather than having been steered by an able hand. They lose their audience, they lose respect, they lose friends.

Those who attempt to live in peace with others seem to try to keep themselves free of  such situations. Once bitten, one does not return to pet a vicious dog. They keep their eye on them, but don't jump into the dog fight. Those people are the ones who show the true 'people smarts.' They know how to steer out of the rough waters, or just ride the waves.  They know how to stay strong in their beliefs without spewing it out in annoyance. Angels!

So many types of personalities, so many types of brains at work!  Most all of them make me scratch my head in wonder at what really lies behind their behavior and words.  I'll never know the answers, but still, I watch....and try to understand.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

You Bin Con-vuhted!

Good Heavens!  The Southern Baptists will be a-twitter! 

And there we were, sitting on the front porch, takin' in the fresh, cool, early Fall air, and perusing the contents of a new book of Southern recipes.  As we drooled over every page,  we discussed dinner menus for the next three and a half years.  (Any of you who know my husband, will  understand that without being told. ) Before long, something amazing happened.... my native dialect was o'er taken by a distinctly Southern drawl!

Ah be-gay-n ta speek lahk Palla Deen ...ow-ah puh-haps it wuz mo-ah lahk  Carol Bur-nay-ett de-id own her show whay-en she de-id the "Gow-one With The Wee-ind" skit.  At iny junct--shun, ah wuz a-bow-t ta ha-ave a spell involvin' the 'vape-ahs.'  In uthuh werds, ah wuz feelin' a bit puny an' wundrin' wut wuz hap-nin' ta may.  Lay-and sykes!

Ah wuz not suh-tin if'n ah wuz sud-dunlee pa-zay-essed, or wuz ah speekin' in uthuh tungs?!  Lordy mercy....the chuch wud have a conniption fo'sho-ah in ethah kise!  Ah say-id ta mah hus-bund thet ah wuz tuh-nin' inta a true Suth'n bay-ell. He jist gave may one-uh them glant-sez sech as he's prone ta due na-ow  'n a-gay-in... 'n thay-in he say-is.....'You bin con-vuhted!'

Mah, mah, mah!!!  Duz thay-at mean ah'll be fah-tin' the Civil Wow-ah agin' the Yankees?  Ah ain't no nat'ral bow-un Suth'nah.....'n ah ain't fixin' t' faht with no-buddy!  Heck fahr! Ah don't cotton t' fah-tin' a'tall. It ain't in mah puh-son-al-it-tay!  Ah s'pose if'n ah had 'ta pick a sahd, ah'd have ta chewz mah nat'ral bow-un side, which (whisperin...) was a Union folk. But, thay-en, wuld ah have ta way-uh a Union Suit??  Ah mah-t have ta pay-ass on awl the-is heah wow-ah. Me 'n a union suit jist wuld-int git on way-ell, ah don't reckon. 

On t'uthah hay-end, if'n ah was t' con-tinya t' talk this-a-why, they's go-own t'be sum folks who's go-own t' git t'thankin' ah'm plumb crazy owe-uh that ah'm a-makin' a jowk-a they-um. Nee-thuh one  wuld be the ach-u-wal truth.  It's jist a sitchy-a-tion thet I don't have iny control ovah, don'tcha know?  Ah reckon it'd be saw-ta hahd t' convince thay-um ov thay-et, how-evuh. So, if'n  the next tah-me y'all lay yo' ahz upon may, puh-layz say wut y'all kin do 'bowt gittin' the tah 'n feth-uhs from off'n mah pow-uh say-elf.  Ah'd be mah-tee oblah-ged if'n ya wuld do thay-et fo' may. 

In the mean-wahle....ya culd pry real hahd fo' this heah 'tungs' sitchy-a-chun I dun fahn m'sef in. Wud ya?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


It's interesting how life moves along on a fairly even pace, and then POW!  Everything changes fast.  In recent weeks I've been effected, not by my own stresses, but things that are happening in the lives of others I have contacts with.

People tend to deal with stress anyway they can. For me, after years and years of trying to 'fix' everything myself, I've learned to pray about it. I've learned to pray about everything. It's the only way I've found that keeps my spirit at peace. I've been called a zealot, and a host of other names because of my faith that God can handle all things better than I can. Who cares? Not's MY life and MY way of living it.

I see others struggling, sagging under the weight of their situations. I see them saying they want to give up, 'what's the use.'  I see them saying that they want God to come and take them to Heaven because this life is too much for them. I see others crying or taking medicines in order to handle whatever the stress is at the moment.

It makes me sad to see these that I care about in such dire straights. I would love to jump in and take it over for the. I'd love to use every word I know that could soothe them. I'd like to dismantle the problems or the people causing them, but it's not within my capabilities.  My heart goes out to these whose presentations from life cause them such anguish. Since I can't do much to help except to listen, to offer a soft word or two, I lift them up to the God who has helped me so often. I know what He can do, I've seen miracles happen. He's just waiting to be asked.

And so....Reader, whoever you are....though I may not know you personally, I know that you have times of stress and anxiety. We all do, because we're human. Know this. Today, I will lift you, un-named before my Lord, and will ask on your behalf that your burdens will be lighter, your fears dissolved. I will pray that you will be reminded that you cannot do it all alone, and that there is someone who can and will change things for you, if you will ask.

Be blessed, dear friends, with peace and comfort today. You've got a friend on earth, and a greater one in Heaven. Talk with Him.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Louder, more bold, overbearing, he speaks.  She tries to explain....he shouts above her in condescending tones, insinuating that she is a dim wit.  She endures, but does not believe his words. She is convinced of her worth, not to him, but of her own worth in the world she lives in. She will not argue with a fool, for she knows that she wins by walking away.

Let him believe as he will, as there is no changing his mind. She knows that. She is on her way to better places, it's only a matter of time before she will see him no more. He will not know where she goes, she is sure of that, for he has no idea of her plan or the people who protect her now and will do so in the future.

He has no idea of the way they laugh at his behavior, of the names they speak to her in private, but not in public, places. His social skills are lacking severely, he's always been a loner, and is now, as well. He's unaware that he exhibits unacceptable behavior.  He has been approached about it, but as brilliant as he thinks he is, he does not comprehend that his modus operandi  will not be tolerated. He is, in his mind, superior to all others, and he has no reason to listen to voices other than his own. He's unteachable.

She knows, she understands his problems, and she's finished with him and his degradation, his pompous arrogance, his bombastic, inflated ego. She knows who she is and what he is, and she's leaving it all behind her. That's what happens to people like him.

It doesn't always happen that way for people like her. Some are ruined because of the belief in his words. Some are caught in the cage of lies. Some don't have protection, or a place to go.  She does, and as she walks away, she remembers the words of one who once said, " It is a small man, indeed, who must degrade another in order to appear great, if only in his own eyes." 

She has won her war and walks away without so much as a battle scar.

Sunday, October 6, 2013


My heart is heavy today, for a few reasons.  I've seen on Facebook that some who are connected with me in reality and some who are known only by Facebook interaction are suffering.  Some are truly troubled, others are irritated by things in their lives.  I've given them some prayer time, and much thought. I know that these things  will pass, and most will come out of these troubles having learned something from them, and with growth because of them.

As for me, I have an irritation. There is an association with one who seeks, unfailingly, to attack me in some form or fashion, regardless of what I say. This one is a disagreeable person, even when I attempt to avoid conflict, it comes directly at me.  I've tried to ignore it, I've tried to rationalize it, I've tried to be understanding. I'm not one who cares much for dissention.  Apparently, I rub this one the wrong way. I cannot avoid this one, as we are members of the same group and often have interaction with the other mutual friends.  Overall, I have a very pleasant experience and have had with my fellow Facebookers.  This one, though, is my thorn in the flesh.

I'll get through this without further incident.....I hope.  It'll be a mind game on my part, not to in any way acknowledge the presence of one who seems to want an all out war of words with me.  Right now my head is telling me to do just this, when inside I'm feeling annoyed that I can't type a thing without some negative reaction from that one.

 Ahhhhh well, such is life, I suppose.  Nobody is loved by everyone....I'll just stick to the ones who care about me, I guess.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Saturday Morning Thoughts

It's least the calendar tells us that it is. The weather here in upstate SC has other plans, however. It's predicted to be 87 degrees before the day is done. I think that's too warm to call it Autumn here, and Mother Nature thinks so too, I guess. There's not a sign of colored leaves yet.  

My mind quickly flashes to my home town, where Fall is beginning. The end of the tourist season has come, and the natives are rejoicing over that and the cooler weather.  I allow myself to drift into thoughts of the place.

The ocean beaches are deserted at this early time of day while I write. But for a million footprints in the sand from former visitors there, you'd think no one ever came to view the sea. Those of us who are drawn there, know that what we see at this hour hides the truth. Before the sun has even awakened, the surf casters will be on the beach in their waders, readying their gear for a catch. The sea birds will dive and soar at the first glint of the sun, competing with the human fishers for a harvest from the ocean.  

Photographers with their digital cameras, lenses and paraphernalia will also arrive to catch the early light.  Some who must make a daily trek along the shore will come too, in order to get their exercise....or to calm a spirit.  Others will arrive in their cars soon, to sit and stare at the ever-changing sea. Still others seem to think it is their duty to go every morning, to be sure that no one has pulled the plug and let the ocean drain away.

Today, as I do on many other days, I remember the way the ocean claps as it hits the sand, spraying foam high in the salted air.  I listen to the rhythms of the waves that sound deep within my soul. I am far from my native home, but it is not far from me. I smell it. I hear it. I see it. It is deeply embedded in me, as if the salt water runs through my veins.  Because I cannot visit today, I visit my memories.

The sands are carried by the sea....and the sands of time have carried me to a different place in the world. A place where pine trees grow tall and the heat of day arrives later and the sun sets over mountains.  Still, as the sands of the beach drift in the Autumn winds, covering the footprints of those who were there, and though I have drifted to an inland home, my own being there on that beautiful island can never be erased. It is all a part of who I am, and will always be so.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Suffice it to say, I'm not thrilled with certain types of creatures. Yeah, yeah....I know...."All creatures, great and small....the Lord God made them ALL. "  All that is GOOD, but I don't know if He had it in mind for us to like everything He made.  I do appreciate His creativity and diversity of His wonderful handiwork, however....I'm not a fan of some of His art. I liken it to my non-understanding of abstract art or rap 'music'. I just don't care for it, mostly.

In this case, I don't understand the need for flies. They are pesky little creatures who land without a thought on things like piles of dung, and directly go from there to a plate of food, with no consideration whatsoever for the one who was about to devour that food.  I also don't see why God chose to make mosquitos. Now, what earthly good can there be in an insect that buzzes in your ear and gnaws on your skin, causing it to erupt in an itchy, red bump.....or worse yet, that may cause you a deathly illness?!  Then there are fire ants. They are not your common picnic invader, they are tiny red versions with huge, invisible teeth that clench the nearest skin clad human body part with a vengence, leaving a burning, incredibly itchy area that lives on for days.  What's the point, I wonder?

I'm also not thrilled with spiders of any sort. I attempt to avoid those at all costs. There are certain ones of those who seem to be prone to penetrating the epidermis as well. Best to leave all of them to themselves. There are other insects that jump, fly or land, sting, bite or annoy. Thankfully, a fly swatter is a good weapon for most, but it does little about gnats or no-see-ums that seem to like to swim in whatever beverage I've just poured for myself. have a point if you've said that most of the above have been created as a food source for some other of God's creation.  I get that, but why must this food source be so annoying to humans?

Insects was not even a thought when I began to write this peice. I had something else in mind.... reptiles. I'm not going to even enter the word for long, squiggly, cold-blooded things. Those, and even the thought of them, make my skin crawl.  But, here in the southeast, we have some other critters of reptilian descent....lizards. They don't usually bother me, except to scare me out of my flip flops when one streams silently past on the front porch.  Right now, though, I'm extremely bothered by the fact that a 6-7" blue one has made it's way into my sunroom, and I can't find it. I saw it....well, it's I entered the room yesterday afternoon. He's lucky he made it past me before my foot landed on him. I'm lucky too, because I think I'd have passed out.

So, until my Hero can catch this danged thing, I must share my favorite room with him. I'm not happy about it at all, but if there's any good that can come of it, maybe he will catch the gnats or other little insects that fly in whenever someone opens the door to the outside.  Or....maybe he's lying in wait somewhere so that when my husband exits to enjoy his coffee on the back steps, old Blue will dart for the open door! I'll bet he's no happier inside than I am to have him.