Thursday, December 18, 2014

Thinking about dust.

As I was cleaning and dusting some profound thoughts happened to pop into my head, ya I know I do have some fragmented images pop in and out of the gray matter quite often. Anyway, dust plays an important role in our lives if you really think about it.

In Genesis, we are told that man was formed from the dust by God. Then God breathed life into the formed He created from dust, and the first man came to life. To top it off when we die this God given life force is withdrawn and our bodies return to dust. So, in thinking about dust in that sense, we are all just piles of dust, energized and held together by the life force or the spirit of God.

Which means managing our personal dust from life to death is the core challenge of our human existence..
Dust consists mostly of dead skin cells and microscopic dust mites eat them. Gross right? Anyway the next time your dusting the house remember what your cleaning up and technically your cleaning and removing tiny pieces of yourself that has already turned to dust.

So I'm thinking, Its important that diet and exercise may improve the quality of our physical body, and could possibly even extend the number of years you live on earth. But in the end, we will all end up in a dust heap. All this to say its far more important to focus on the spiritual aspect of our being, because its that portion of us that lives on after the dust has been blown away.

Ok, thats just one of my thoughts rolling around today. My other thoughts are more towards the wedding of my granddaughter this weekend and thinking about how blessed she is to have found a soul mate who loves the Lord just as she does.
I had the privilege of helping with some of the preparations earlier this week and now just looking forward to watching how this event will unfold.

Of course thinking also of the Christmas season and the message of our savior coming to earth to save us all!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!! 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Well, well, well,, ya, I know a deep subject, right?? I haven't been on this blog for seems like forever.. actually it has been forever.
Its been a really wintery Nov. around my neck of the woods but now that we have Dec. its been really cold but the snow is gone. Believe me I'm not complaining, winter isn't my favorite season. I hate being cold and dislike having pull on boots, coats and mittens to keep warm. Its funny but I really don't remember disliking winter so much when I was a kid but kid I'm not any more..


The Christmas frenzy has begun, with black Friday and cyber Monday just behind us but is that really what Christmas is all about?? The media would like us all to believe that to be true, that Santa, reindeer, buying gifts, and spending, spending spending is really what Christmas is about.. but wait what about the baby in the manger???
Isn't that the reason for the season?? Isn't it about the creator of this world sending a perfect child to come to take all our sins upon himself?? Isn't that the perfect gift to us sinners saved by grace?? This baby grew to be our savior who went to the cross in obedience of the Father. And we should be in awe of the work he did on the cross.
Yes, celebrate the season with family, food and gifts but never forget the real reason behind Christmas. Never forget that the sins of each one of us was put on him so that one day we could stand before a Holy God and be pronounced innocent. Isn't that the ultimate gift??? And its free...
Merry Christmas to all!!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

There comes a time to make the change..Retirement isn't the end of everything.

I have finally made the decision to call it quits.. yup its time.  After contemplating, praying, much thinking about and finally making the decision I'm done.
I started out with my first job when I was 15, babysitting of course. but it was a regular job I went to daily, I don't recall what I was paid but it wasn't what young people get paid today. It was enough to buy a few amenities for a teenager.
One of my other jobs was working in a cookie factory, packaging those wafer cookies on a assembly line  in preparation for wrapping and sending off to the stores, I think that job lasted about six weeks. It just wasn't for me. Then I worked second shift spray painting the tail lights for the Torrino cars. That was really my first eye opener to factory work. It was mostly women who did the spray painting of these parts and we had to work fast to keep up with the demands for these cars. The foreman was a gruff man but kind for the most part. We needed to wear old clothing with long shirts to protect ourselves from becoming covered with the spray from the paint which just happened to be black. I remember leaving each night with black paint always somewhere on me.
That job paid very well but it just wasn't where I belonged either.

I finally went to school to finish my high school education and decided to try being a nurse aide. That was a scary job at first, knowing I was caring for other humans who depended on me for so many things. But I learned a lot about human nature, quickly picked up on the medical terms, learned about body functions, some of  the more common diseases  and the medical field started to look pretty appealing to me. So, I applied for nursing school, knowing there was over a year waiting list to get in. After six months of waiting I received a letter telling me there was an opening if I wanted to start within a month.
I soaked up everything I could learn in the nursing field and it came easy for me. I even enjoyed chemistry classes, and anatomy and physiology was one of my favorites. I remember giving my first shot to an elderly very thin lady and I was petrified I would stick the needle right into her bone she was so thin. But, with encouragement from my instructor & her confidence in me I managed to give that shot and my little skinny lady never flinched. After graduating I was hired right away and began my career working in one of the local hospitals on a med-surg floor. After working for a year on that floor I was asked if I would be willing to float to other floors to cover different areas that were overloaded and needed extra nurses. I agreed and soon found myself getting called to ICU and CCU. It was there I learned how to read EKG's, care for patients on respirator's, and tubes coming from every orifice that the body has with a few added for good measure. I saw people struggle through the swine flu, Guillian-Barre syndrome back in 1976 which landed many in ICU, and  took the lives of many who had been healthy just a few short days before contracting that dreaded illness. It was there I learned the true meaning of stat, how to read lab results, and how to look at an individual and make an educated assessment within a manner of a few minutes. I learned seconds do count when it came to someone's life. It was intense but at the same time a huge challenge to a young nurse hunger to learn and care for the sick. I also had the opportunity to get pulled to the maternity floor a few times and there witness the miracle of birth. That was most often a happy floor to work on and then of course there was an occasional newborn nursery that needed nurses because all the mom's delivered on a full moon or during a storm. The usual staff on that floor wasn't always prepared for so many births in one day. Keep in mind all of this happened back a few years, since then things have changed a WHOLE bunch!! Its all different now. I worked at that hospital for seven years and feel its where I gleaned a lot of my knowledge of nursing. When I went to partime at the hospital I started to work three days a week for my father, who had a booming Chiropractic practice. He needed someone to take histories, do x-rays and help with the billing. My mom also worked with him doing most of the clerical work, so it was a real family thing. I especially enjoyed getting to know so many of his patients and to hear the stories of how he helped them with various aliments. It was a much calmer more relaxed atmosphere compared to the hospital. I can remember my father taking homemade goodies, canned goods and other types of payments when people couldn't pay their bills. Now you will never here of that happening in todays world.
When we moved out of the city it was a long drive back and forth to the hospital and to the office so I filled out an application in a local nursing home about 3 miles from where I lived and was hired on the spot, many of you know the rest of the story. At first I wasn't sure I would like working with the elderly but I soon came to love each one of them, their families and the staff. All three of my children worked in the same nursing home either in the kitchen, laundry or housekeeping and sometimes in all three areas to introduce them to the working world in their junior and senior years of high school. They learned responsibility, how to manage their own money and that life isn't always fun and games, but that old people are full of wisdom, kindness, and have contributed a lot to this world, and that they need love and respect just like anyone else does.
The community was small so you pretty much knew everyone living in the area. That has also changed over the years, especially since we are now a university town. Its still not a big city but has spread out and become modernized.
All of this to get back to the reason for this post, I am officially retired!!! I made that decision shortly after returning from three months in Florida this past winter. It made it easier to just not go back, having already been gone that long. Many of the long term staff and good friends who have also reached the retirement age have left, many of the residents I knew have passed on and new programs are being implemented. More information I don't want to fill my already over filled and sometimes forgetful brain with. Its the perfect time to bow out.
My husband (sweetman) and I have a great loving relationship and we truly enjoy each others company. We both like to ride the trike (motorcycle), take short trips, spend time with the many grand kids we have, and we both like to putter. Sweetman has always loved fixing up things and reselling, he's what's become known as a picker in todays language. I enjoy spending time outside gardening, reading and just having more free time
 I graduated from nursing school in 1972 and worked until now so I think 42 years in the field of nursing has been long enough. Maybe I'll take up pottery making or painting or zumba. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Some things must end!

This winter has been a memorable one in so many ways, for some who live in the northern States it was the winter that never wanted to end. But for Sweetman and I it was an enjoyable time for us both. We explored many different parks, both locally and a few we had to travel a days ride to get to, which was well worth the trips. We walked trails through mangroves, cedar trees, swamps, along rivers and on the gulf of Mexico. We wiggled our toes in fine white sugar sand while waiting for a magnificent sunset painted only by God.  We've fished in Tarpon lake which was only a short walk from where we lived for the past three months plus two weeks. And caught some of the biggest blue gills I have ever seen, using chicken hot dogs for bait.  We've ridden our golden chariot ( trike motorcycle) on just about every major road in this area, plus found lots of quaint narrow red brick streets in the older historic sections of nearby towns. We've met several other GWRRA members in this area, and enjoyed attending a local district rally with vendors, food, and a mostly funny talent show put on by the local chapters, with the theme right out of the days of Robin Hood. We met up with friends from home who were also enjoying the freedom from the frigid winter that continued to rage and dump huge piles of snow up north.
I finally got my first lesson in driving the trike, something I've wanted to do for months but the opportunity just hadn't arisen, but here there was a huge empty parking lot that was just the right spot for Sweetman to give me a chance to learn the basics of trike driving.
Most everyday we take a walk either before breakfast or after, which ever floats our boat that day. Thats part of the beauty of retirement, no structured schedules. In fact we have become a bit lazy, sleeping in some mornings, enjoying coffee, while deciding on what to fix for breakfast. Which often isn't until 9:30 or later. Oh, there were days we got up at dark thirty and traveled to the flea market to sell vintage (junk) items found at local garage sales. Which also helped to support a small part of this adventure we are on. Plus there was a community sale right here that we took advantage of selling in our own drive way. So some work and not all play was had.
I spent early mornings reading devotions in a sun filled room and lazy afternoons lounging by the huge pool where the temperature of the water is kept at 84 degrees and sliding into the aqua water is not a shock to the system. The little church we found to attend was welcoming with true bible teaching messages. And great coffee in their little cafe. I was able to keep up on the ladies bible study via internet with is always a huge blessing just to stay connected so to speak.
Sweetman has eaten numerous fresh strawberry short cakes, something he loves. And I have enjoyed the fresh citrus fruits, salads, and huge avocados that are so abundant. On the down side of all this eating we both have added a few inches to our girth. Hopefully we can whittle that down soon.
The wildlife is different here, with so many birds, snowy egrets, great blue herons, pelicans that will steal the fish right off the fisherman's line as he is reeling it in. Which is frustrating for the avid\novice. We've seen large tortoise that live in holes in the ground, and the usual kind sunning themselves on the banks of lakes and rivers with shells all green from the algae. We even had a rare wood stork visit us one day right out in the drive way and I fed him some crackers which it seemed to enjoy.  Lots of gators large and small, they are everywhere in fresh water lakes here. One doesn't swim in the lakes much because of them.
But now its time to pack up and head home, both of us are ready to see family that we have missed and to reconnect with our back home friends, besides we here the snow is gone and the weather has improved. Maybe just maybe winter is really gone for good. :-)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Spring and other pressing issues!


I'm  thinking spring and I found these pictures somewhere in my archives. Plus I finally figured how to get the pictures on my blog from my tablet. Big accomplishment for this rusty blogger.
I know all my northern friends are longing for some warmth andI'vens of better weather, while hopefullyit here soaking up sunshine and warm breezy days in the sunshine state, I do fee somewhat guilty but then again if we were home I know for a fact you would not have seen Sweetman or myself out in the elements that Michigan has been putting on display since last December.
I do have mixed feelings about being gone this winter, with daughter #2 dealing witJoe'sxtremely challenging health issues, with many emergency visits and hospital stays. And other family members and close friends steping in to support her in our absence. It has been hard to totally enjoy our time here. She has been constantly on our hearts, and the only thing that has sustained us is our trust in knowing God has a plan in her life as well as ours. And we are all in the plan that has been laid out for us by His devine grace. I think of the verse in Psalm 139:5 " you have enclosed me behind and before, and laid your hand upon me" Like being wrapped in a cocoon of the Lords hands.
He has given us a peace knowing He is beside this sick girl all the time. She was His child before she was mine , I have to remember He loves her far more than I ever could. She has only been gifted to me. That being said, we also covet any prayers directed to her wellbeing.
We have had our share of good times though, riding the trike, visiting a number of wild life preserves, viewing the manatees, meeting up with friends for lunch or dinner ,meeting new friends and spending alot of time with each other. Not all couples can truly say they enjoy being with each other rather than other people?.  Just being able go wake up to mild temps,throw on some shorts and light shirt, sandals and take a brisk walk, or a quick bike ride before breakfast. Or eat first then take a walk, whatever happens to be our fancy. Thats the beauty of retirement.
Theres a fantastic pool here that is kept at 82-84 degrees for all of us snowbirds of delicate systems to enjoy as well. Not to mention any number of activities that you can busy yourself with. We haven't involved ourselves with alot of these but the choice is ours if we choose.  While we do miss everyone back home, we really dont want to return before that nasty weather has decided to move on. All of this to say there will come a day soon when we will be packing up and heading northward. We have been blessed to be able to spend time in a much milder climate.
Today we are having rain showers so we decided to take a road trip to Traders Joe's. I have wanted to visit this store for along time but there isnt one near us at home. I wasn't disappointed, and we managed to find some good deals. Now I can finally say i've been to Traders Joe's, and hopefully it wont be the last.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

SOME FUN FACTS

Who knew???
A buffalo can jump as high as 6 feet!
In the year 2000, Tiger Woods caddy made 1 million.
Detroit has more registered bowlers than any other American city.
It takes 10 pounds of milk to make 1 pound of cheese.
Democrats are more likely than Republicans to own a cat.
A pineapple is actually a very big berry.
A potatoe's closest edible relative is an eggplant.
The Great Salt Lake is six times saltier than seawater.
The worlds largest consumer of sugar is Coca-Cola.
Most lipstick contains fish scales.
The sentence "the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" uses every letter in the english language.
The first St. Patricks day celebration in the United States was held in Boston in 1737
President Lyndon Johnson had an aunt named Frank.
According to the Guinness world book of records, the highest number of leaves found on a clover is 14.
One cord of wood (14ft x 8ft) will make 75 million toothpicks.

Just some little bits of highly saught after information is now yours!!
Have fun surprising your friends with all this knowledge..

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Some things I don't like

As much as I like it in the sunshine state there are a few things I don't like. For example at home we live in the country on a dirt road, which I detest. But whenever I rumble down that road to the nearest intersection I merely have to look both ways and pull out. Oh, there may be a car or three I have to wait for but that only takes a minute. You get the picture, not much traffic. Here getting out onto a main road is like watching four lanes of cars sprinting out of the gate, rushing each other to get to the next stop light. And of course the guy on the right wants to get to the left lane and the one one the left is headed for the right lane, the one in the middle is racing the other two. Its not a pretty picture, plus it takes plenty of patience. The stop lights last about 5 minutes so, you could probably walk the five miles faster than driving it. A true Floridian told us its the fault of all the old people who are snowbirds that cause the traffic.. hum!!
We've learned that going anywhere will take twice as long as you think and we have found some alternate ways of getting around but this is time consuming as well.  Enough about traffic.
There is another thing I don't like so much and this will be a shock to many who know me, because I like bugs of most kinds, I like spiders and I'm not afraid of snakes. But I don't like palmetto bugs!! I'm convinced they are pre historic and cant figure why God created them they rate about as low on the scale as flies and mosquito's. We have found 4-5 of them in various stages of dying but still wiggling. They do spray here for such things so I guess that's why the critters are not fully viable. But just to make sure we bought some extra spray and have saturated every nick and cranny.
This laid back lifestyle has added a bulge or two that I have no use for either. We have enjoyed many good meals with friends, not to mention the snacks in between. We walk daily and ride the peddle bikes but it must not be enough to keep up with the intake that is being ingested. Well, after all we are snowbirds who are contributing to the traffic, why not a bulge or two for good measure.??

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Many moons have passed

Hey its been a long time and soo much has happened I don't know where to begin. So maybe I'll start with today.
I'm sort of retired now, from a more than 30+ years of working in the nursing field, mostly with the geriatric generation, of which I have somehow moved into that category. I say that with tongue in cheek because I don't truly feel my life fully reflects seniorhood. At least not in the manor that most people think of as senior living.
Were currently spending our winter in a much better climate than where our lives originated from. And to be honest with you I can't see us spending the winter months ever again in the freezing cold snow covered streets of the northern States.
Sweetman (my pet name for my loving husband) and I have enjoyed the laid back life of arising most mornings when we wake up naturally without alarms. We don't have to rush around to shower, dress, and fly out the door to punch a time clock. Oh, it took some time to settle into a less hectic routine but we have acclimated ourselves fairly well.  We can choose to enjoy a cup of coffee, take a walk, and then eat or eat and then take a walk or maybe just pick up a good book to indulge in a chapter or two before deciding what we will fill the rest of the day with. Of course reading devotions and giving the Lord thanks for a new day is always at the top of the day.
Smelling the sweet moist air of a warmer climate each day is a blessing, not to mention listening to the different sounds of tropical birds. Sitting on the patio today I was surrounded by little geckos scurrying around me. They never seem to interested in the human sitting watching them but stay very busy doing whatever they are doing.
With the weather so mild we called some friends and jumped on the trikes and took a ride to explore another park.  The sun warming our backs and the breezes blowing in our faces, we can look out over the blue green water and see snowy egrets slowly stalking small crabs or little fish in the shallow waters along the shores, or watch the pelicans fly and suddenly dive into the water. Coming up with their bills filled with water and small fish.
Its hard to believe that it is still winter when the flowering trees and shrubs are popping with blooms, and the buzz of a bee flies near.
Since Sweetman has had a quadruple bypass we walk daily, sometimes long walks, sometimes short, but we walk. And I thank God each day that he is able to do all the things he enjoys. If his heart would have stopped he wouldn't be doing any of this.
My heart is torn to be away from the rest of the family but they have their own busy lives, with work, children and activities of their interest. Our children are not young and our grand children's lives are filled with college, boyfriends, girlfriends, church and experiencing life in the work fields making their own money. Some are young married with babies, which means we have great grand children. Yikes!!!
My middle child who is fifty struggles with breathing difficulties, since last November. It all started so unexpectedly with sinus and cold symptoms but has developed into severe breathing issues that has yet to be diagnosed. She hasn't been well enough to go through some of the tests to determine just what she has.  This child is constantly on my mind and in our prayers daily. She didn't want us to cancel our trip south because of her. I have to remind my self that God loves her more than I ever could and this is not a surprise for Him. I'm ever thankful to other members of the family, friends and our small group who have come along side of her in our absence. Not to mention Drs. nurses and miracle drugs to sustain and ease some of her symptoms. Its a helpless feeling when there is nothing you can do to help but pray and wait.
As much as I like this warm weather it does have some draw backs. For one thing with all the snowbirds here the traffic is horrible and it doesn't seem to matter if its a main road or one less traveled its bumper to bumper at certain times of the day. We have learned when to travel in between the busy times. I love the humidity too, not everyone agrees with me on this one, especially my hair. Its been a constant battle with the frizzies. It seems I have this natural wave, curl, whatever you want to call it that doesn't respond to any hair product that I have tried so far. The bathroom shelf is lined with several products that have failed the test on my mop head. But I am grateful that I have hair, so I had better not complain to much. It is what it is!!! Something a friend always says..
This has turned into one long post, I hope who ever reads it hasn't been bored to much. The words have spilled out and run forth, I better save a few for next time.