Make time for Needful things

In today’s world, we are in such a rush that we are forgetting the most important things in life. We hurry to work, eat fast food, while time for family and friends are laid to the wayside. Is this what life is all about in society today? It sure seems that way, but is this a healthy way to live? The answer to this question would be a resounding no. If we don’t find time for the needful things in life, then what kind of life are we really living? This answer would be a very empty life indeed.

Small girl sitting with a smile

       All the money in the world won’t be near as precious a gift as a smile from your child. A child’s smile is more than enough reason to find the needed time for family and friends. How many people live their whole lives working and look back from an old age, knowing they have waited a lifetime? This is such a sad existence and one that should never be lived in the first place. Did you take care of your family with all the work you did? Of course, you did, but how many birthdays did you miss because you got called into work, and you took it upon yourself to answer the phone?

       It is true that working hard for your family is very honorable, but what did you miss because of work? Don’t get me wrong, I respect a hard worker, and I’m sure your family does as well. The thing I’m talking about is the downtime to enjoy your family and friends. Do you find yourself spending all spare time in front of the television or reading all about the bad stuff happening in your newspaper? When was the last time you spent free time teaching your daughter to fly a kite? Maybe it’s something even of a shorter time, like explaining a math problem or teaching your child how to bake a cake. The key is to find time when it seems like there isn’t any to spare. If you can’t spare it now, then when?

        Using your free time wisely is extremely important! Some of this time must be used for relaxation of the mind, other parts need to be used for connecting with loved ones and friends. If you don’t find time for others, why would they find time for you later? Many people grow old alone because they didn’t have time for others earlier in life. Don’t set your life’s goals only upon working that nine to five job. Finding the downtime away from work leads to a much healthier and happier life for you as well as those around you. Why wait until that one-week vacation to find out who is important to you.

Old man sitting alone reading a book

      We live our lives sitting on a time bomb! What I mean by this is, we never know when our time is up. Some die at a very young age, while others live to be very old. Are you going to lay odds that you will have time to enjoy life later? How old will you live to be? More importantly, how long will your family and friends live to be? Will they still be around when you decide it is time to get to know them better? Furthermore, will they be willing to give you the time of day after so many years of being ignored?

     I understand, in this day and age, it is hard to make a living for your family and many friendships may be put aside because of the stresses you have to deal with every day. I also understand how important it is for us to have friends and family in our lives in a social environment.

Dog getting a pat on the head by his owner

      Let’s think of a dog for a moment. Your pet dog is a great pet because they are always happy to see you! You could leave the house and be gone ten minutes. When you return, your dog is so happy to see you that he can hardly stand still. As long as you give your dog a pat on the head or a quick scrub on the belly, your dog is happy. He is always looking for another way to get that pat or scrub. Why do we call dogs man best friend? Because they are forgiving and ready to please you anytime day or night. Now, people are very different in this nature. People have to be reminded that they are loved and needed. If you go long enough without reminding them of this love and need, they will forget and look for another place to receive these things. Dogs are loyal to their owners, but people are their own owners and only loyal to those that show loyalty to them. Are you willing to pass a time to show your family and friends your loyalty? How long do they have to wait on you? Besides, your dog tends to get more attention from you than your family and friends, even if it is only a pat on the head. This is very sad if you think about it.

       When your children were younger, do you remember how excited they were to see you, even if you had been gone only a short time? As you become too busy to spend time with them, are they still as excited or are you now just someone that lives under the same roof? There was a time when you would call your friend, and they were excited to come over for dinner. Now, when you call, they seem to have other things planned. Do you feel any of this happening in your life? If so, then it’s time to find time for others, even if it’s just a few minutes to let them know you care. Make the connection today, or live to wander later when you are alone.

Father and children holding hands and playing

       One final note, and I will let you consider if my words hold truth for you. If you don’t want to grow old alone, I suggest you take this post to heart and do so today. Don’t wait until it is too late. Remember, people are different from dogs, besides most of us outlive our dogs. Show a need and love for your family and friends today. Tomorrow may be too late. Take care, God bless and remember, we are all in this together.

Your words are important to you and your health

     I have demonstrated in a couple of posts before, trying to come up with the best way to show how important our words are. In these before posts, I don’t believe I have gotten my point completely across to the satisfaction of my readers. In this post, I will attempt to explain how important your words are to you and your health differently. As I have been known to teach others in various ways, I refuse to quit until my students have received the full benefit of knowledge I have gained through years of study and a life filled with learning the hard way. I now am committed to pass along as much knowledge as possible before my time here on earth ceases to exist. For everything I teach someone else, I learn double the amount. So I’m not trying to show how smart I am but to not only pass something onto you, but gain knowledge for myself.

Teacher in front of classroom, using whiteboard

      A teacher, who cannot learn, should no longer attempt to teach. I must explain here that I have never taught in a school atmosphere other than a time I was a trainer for a truck driving school in Tucson, Arizona. I have however taught multiple people in every career that I have ever been a part of. Furthermore, I know you have heard the old adage “those that can’t, teach”. I personally have always been against this saying! Additionally, I believe a teacher should not teach a subject that they themselves cannot do. The main reason for this is obvious, how can you teach what you don’t know? And yet there are so many that break this rule every day. So it is up to you and me to pass on knowledge as we have learned to those that need to know. So let’s dig in deep and try this lesson one more time. If need be, I will find another way to teach this lesson if this one doesn’t get the rest of you on board that may have missed it the first couple of times we discussed this.

      There is a way to say things in a way that will make you feel a certain way, and hard to change that feeling. For example, if you were to say, “I am sad”. You have just painted yourself in a corner of being sad. Now, if you change that a bit and say, “I am experiencing sadness”. You have now given yourself a way out. You can now go from sadness to happy right away if you so choose to. Instead of locking the door on an emotion, leave it cracked a little, just in case you would want to allow another emotion to enter the room. Without allowing yourself some form of change, you will lock yourself into the room with no way out! Of course, this works both ways. Even though most find it is easier to become sad than it is to become happy, we need both of these emotions. For full disclosure, I and people that try to stay with the positive side, have learned it is easier to become happy than it is to become sad. The last sentence was just food for thought!

How would one mourn the death of a family member or close friend without sadness? How would we be able to move on from this loss without mourning? Without the use of all of our feelings, we would become less than human. Furthermore, we must have a way to change emotions as needed depending upon what is needed at the time. So if we lock ourselves into one emotion when another is needed, we won’t be able to change as needed. And how do we lock ourselves in? That’s right, by locking the door on the emotion we are in. Now, what is the fastest way to lock that door? By convincing ourselves to stay in one emotion. And how can we convince ourselves of this? Yes, with our words. When we voice what we feel, we tell ourselves, that’s it. Why and how do words accomplish locking that door? Here is where it gets interesting. Who on this earth do you believe more than you? Nobody right? So you spoke the words, you believe you and you even heard the words by the one you trust the most, you! Boom! There it is, your words are more powerful than anything you possess.

      Here is another example that most of us can see very clearly in our day-to-day life. I can’t lose the weight. I have to eat that chocolate  cake. My body needs that soda. I can’t do it! Well, you are absolutely right, you have just told yourself what you can and can’t do. You have just received the best intelligence that you can get on this earth. You have not only closed the door, but you pad locked it, took off the door knob and plastered over it!

Why do people look to and get excited by motivational speakers? The answer is because, they convince us to change our minds about something. And what is the #1 thing they ask us to do? They tell us to speak the words, shout the words, write down the words and repeat this saying every day! Why? Because, you have to convince you! The speaker is just giving you the tools to use. The person on the stage cannot convince you if you decide not to believe it. You have to not only believe it, you have to convince your mind, this is the way. The only way for this to work is to speak it. The more you say it, the more you will believe it.

Two ladies talking in sign language

There is always someone out there that ask me, “What about people that can’t speak or those that can’t hear?” I answer the same way all the time, “Is sign language, not, a form of speech?” “Are vibrations through touch not a form of hearing?” We may not hear or speak the same way as others, but as humans, we find a way! I hope this puts an end to questions about people that have a different way of speech for good!

I hope this post has taught you how important your words are. I can’t express how important and how much this lesson weighs heavily on my heart. This is so important to understand. I am constantly fighting myself to follow what I am trying to teach here. This is not a natural thing for us to do, especially in this day and age. You must continue to work with using your words carefully every day. If you want to accomplish anything worthwhile in your life, you must get this process right. If you don’t, you will find yourself falling back into the same thing you have fought so hard to get away from. This can include losing weight, getting out of debt, or even creating a new lifestyle. Trust me when I say, “It is a constant battle, but one that is worth fighting“. I believe in you, now you need to believe in you and change whatever it is to achieve what you will. Until next time, take care and God bless. Remember, we are all in this together.

Repair your inner core to look younger

      I have been watching and learning from people all my life. Some feel this to be normal, but I look into the thoughts and actions of people deeper than most. We all come to a point in life where, no matter what your age, want to become something we can no longer be. The older we get, the younger we try to become. This concept has engulfed most of my thoughts while studying others. Whether it’s make-up for women or lifting weights for men, we are always trying to turn back the clock of life. Let it be known, you will be a day older tomorrow, regardless how much you do today to try and change it. Once you are thirty years of age, twenty-nine is gone forever. So are we trying to turn back the clock to help others see us as we were, or are we trying to help ourselves live a long and healthy life?

     Watching people can teach you a lot about yourself, but one thing it won’t teach you is to be happy with you! You can lose the weight, run five miles a day and eat all the right things, but you are still you. If you believe losing ten more pounds will make someone love you more, you are sadly mistaken. If anyone has ever made this statement to you, then surprise, they don’t know what love is. And if you believe it, then guess what, you don’t know what love is any more than they do.

Lady with lots of make-up with scowl
Make-up doesn’t cover up meanness

In the time it has taken you to read this far, you have gained age, and nothing you can do will change that. You can make the package look better, but you are still the age you are. I have nothing against anyone that wants to improve themselves physically, but you’re not turning back the clock, you are just putting a new coat of paint on it. God Bless those that try, but remember, we are still who we are. If you were a butthole at three hundred and fifty pounds, you are the same butthole at two hundred pounds unless you fix the inside, not just the outside.

As I watch, most people try to do the upkeep of their bodies, not for themselves, but for others. This is a huge mistake! If you want to truly improve yourself, put as much work on your inside as you do on the outside. And some might take this wrong and yell at the screen, “I am eating right!” This has nothing to do with what I am suggesting. To fix the inside (inner core), we must fix numerous things that have nothing to do with what we eat. We must repair our attitude (positive rather than negative), humor, thought process and even something called love for our fellow humans. Do you treat others the way you wish to be treated, or just expect them to show you kindness while you treat them like dirt? Are you making people feel welcome or slamming the door in their face? These are inside things that can be fixed with less will power, than it takes to leave the cookie jar closed.

You have now gained a few more minutes of age and there’s no going back. The good news, you can change for the better and make the world a better place beginning now. It may take a long time to lose the weight. It may take a long time to be able to lift them free weights you have been staring at. But you can start making yourself a better person by the time you finish reading this post. All it takes is to decide to do it. Once you have made this decision, it will start making you a better person immediately. Do you feel good about who you are? This question has nothing to do with weight, muscles or what job you have. I ask again, do you feel good about who you are? Can you look someone in the eyes when talking to them, or do you have to look away? Are you trying to hide who you are, or are you proud of who you are?

Lady running in triathlon with smile on he face
Good inner core makes all the difference

Here’s the good news. Once you start working and repairing your inside, it will become easier to repair the outside! All of a sudden, it will be easier to lose the weight or run them five miles, if you wish. And as far as turning back the clock, the glow you put off to others will make you look much younger than what you are. We can’t turn back the clock of age. We haven’t the technology of a time machine yet. Make-up may cover the rust, but when it is taken off at night, the rust will still be there. But an inner core can be repaired and will show on the outside as though you have the ability to turn back the clock. You have the power, but do you have the will? This is my challenge I lay before you. If you should accept, I promise you will become a new you, and you don’t have to believe an infomercial to receive it. God Bless, I wish you well, and I will talk to you again next week.

Pain is best dealt with by humor

     A person in pain with no sense of humor is a miserable person indeed. However, a person in pain that has a sense of humor, may still be in pain, but is able to deal with it a lot easier. Is it not true that laughter is the best medicine? Try to laugh (I don’t mean fake laugh, I mean a true laugh) and think about being miserable at the same time. Can’t do it can you? You are trying to cause two opposite emotions to invade the same place at the same time. So a person who has a great sense of humor has a hard time not laughing at something or someone that is funny, even if he or she is in pain at the time. This in turn will, even if for just a few seconds, will allow the pain to be forgotten. This few seconds are worth a million bucks to someone who lives with pain all the time.

Laughing baby

     As someone who deals with pain on a daily basis, I am always looking for the next laugh. Heck, there are days that a small chuckle would be worth its weight in gold to me. The days that I can’t find something to laugh about are the worst days by far. Now I’m not saying I have a great sense of humor, I’m saying I have a great sense of humor for me. Everyone has a different kind of humor, but we all started out with the same kind. You heard me right, have you ever seen a baby’s first laugh? Anyone who can watch a baby laugh and not smile themselves, has completely forgotten whatever sense of humor they ever possessed. How many baby’s have you known that never laughed? I will await your answer……

Okay, I’m done waiting. We must move on now. So since we all agree that as babies, we have a sense of humor, then where did some of us lose it? Was it a bad childhood, something happened after growing up, or was it trained out of us? That is a question you must answer for yourself. I had a few years that my humor left me, it was the heartbreak of divorce. It took a few years for me to locate it again, and oh, how I missed my old friend (humor). Once I allowed my humor back into my life, my whole life returned to me. Shortly afterwards, the love of my life entered my life, and we have been married now for twenty-two years and still going strong. It was up to me to allow my humor back and because I did, the pain I once went through with heartbreak has now been replaced by the love of my life. Why must I tell you this, easy, because I want to show that it is very possible to regain the humor you may have lost somewhere along your lifespan.

After getting injured during a mining accident, even though it caused a physical pain and not heartbreak, I find my humor helpful. The days that are my worst are the ones without a good laugh. Now I look for ways to laugh everyday, regardless how bad the pain is. It works, my friends, it really does!

Girl sitting on chair in full laughter

The whole point of this post is to let you know, pain exist, and it hurts, but humor does help. No matter what you are going through in life, a little laugh now and then can only help. It most definitely won’t hurt. You don’t need to be happy all the time, and humor won’t fix a broken heart or broken bone. It will, however, make the situation a little easier to deal with. I leave you with this final thought, why not take humor for a spin and see if it helps you? Take care my friends and remember to smile, besides it takes more muscles in your face to frown.

No longer 10 feet tall and bulletproof

      I am reminded every day, as I get older, of my wild and crazy youth. Once my body was made of steel, now it’s made of petrified wood. At one time I felt that I could do anything even if it meant putting my body through rigorous pain. Now I know to search for the easy ways instead of blasting through head first. Once I was ten feet tall and bulletproof, now I know I was just stupid at the time. I am now paying for the heroics of my youth with a much wiser set of rules for myself. Am I any more fragile than when I was young? I don’t believe this to be true. In all actuality, I’m probably stronger now than I ever was. The difference is, now I understand how much abuse the human body can withstand. Now I know with great feats of strength, come great pains of what was in the beginning.

      I’m not sure why, as young men, we must try to blast through that concrete wall when it is much easier to use the door. Some say it’s the testosterone running through us and yet, others claim it is the rite of passage. Maybe, just maybe, it was that pretty girl that walked by, and she must be shown how massively strong this young buck was. Of course, later in life we realize that she, who turned the young buck’s head, thought we were just stupid. She, of course, was correct, but we are blinded by the beauty and the testosterone will boil! There is a certain dynamic to these tales that will be relived over and over through our lives. And when the magic 3-0 rears its head, the pain will drive a man to think twice about going through the wall instead of using the door.

Car wreck at bottom of hillside

      I believe in my heart, for most men, wisdom begins at thirty. How much damage have we done through our twenty-nine years of being untamed, stupid and just plain not right in the head before this time is anyone’s guess. We all have the stories of our wild and crazy youths but, you have to ask, was it worth it? The answer depends on how much your body reminds you of your wild or shall I step on and say, “Stupid” days. Did you break some bones or almost die from something that seemed like a good idea at the time? Did you wreak your first car by trying to make that 20mph curve at 60mph? Did you do something that even you knew at the time was idiotic, just because someone dared you to do it and out of the corner of your eye, you seen that pretty girl that you wanted to get to know? And afterwards, did really feel stupid when you did it and you got hurt, let alone seen that pretty girl leave the scene with someone else? Ya, me too!

     All the cases above had some form of truth to them in my own life. I wasn’t the brightest bulb in the barn. However, I have become much wiser for my misadventures so in some ways, it wasn’t so bad, I guess. I do feel all the twinges of pain more and more as I gain age. Even though I never broke a bone growing up, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. In all actuality, I believe the good Lord was taken care of me. Many times, I should have died from my variance, but it wasn’t until much older that I experienced my own death. Of course, that is a story for another time. So was it all worth it? Well I didn’t get the girl, I messed up a lot of vehicles along with my body, and I’m feeling a lot more pain from my adventures. I guess I would have to say, yes it was. I am who I am because of my stupidity and I enjoy a wisdom, I never would have without my misadventures.

       Would I live my life the same way over, given another chance? I guess I would have to answer no to that question. This would be because I now have the wisdom, so unless said wisdom was taken away, my answer would have to stand as no I wouldn’t.

Boy jumps his skateboard onto stair railing

      Another part of this would have to include my sons and grandson. I raised my boys letting them know, I didn’t want them to do stupid things, but knew they would. I never held it against them, of course there was always punishment that would be handed out. They are getting close to their thirties now, and I know, the wisdom will come when their time is at hand. I have one grandson now, and I hope his daddy will show him the same tolerance. We are all boys and as the old adage says, “boys will be boys.”

      As fathers, we must remember our youth and allow our sons to find their way in life, too. We must be stern when they mess up. We must teach them respect, and we must allow them to grow up to be good men. They will find wisdom on their own path in their own time, but don’t take away their rite of passage. They are going to mess up and cause themselves pain along the way, but it will make them stronger and wiser men. The last thing I must add, be careful telling them of your youth. Pick and choose your stories careful, at least until they reach the turning point from stupid to wisdom.

I once was 10 feet tall and bulletproof! I am now not so tall and no longer bulletproof, but I am much wiser for the things I have been through. Furthermore, I would love to hear your coming of age stories. Was there ever a point when you just knew you turned the corner from stupid to wise? If you had a chance to go back and try again, would you? What are your feelings on this subject? I hope you enjoyed this one. Take care, God bless, and I talk to you again next week. Remember, we are all in this together.

When all is lost, you’ve looked amiss

Ever have that feeling that all is lost and there’s nothing you can do to fix said situation? Well, if you haven’t, you either aren’t human or you haven’t done anything at all your whole existence.

How is it that some can jump right back on the horse, yet others can only huddle in a corner, feeling desperation creeping in with every tick of the clock? Where do these people come from that always find the good in all situations? Do these people have some form of supernatural powers, we don’t know about? And if they do, why are they keeping their powers a secret when so many others are struggling? These are questions that even the most level-headed people have asked themselves at some point in their life.

Man sitting on floor with hands on his head showing despair.

If you feel that the whole world is coming down around your ears and cannot see anyway that things can get any worse, I have some sad news. If you are feeling this kind of pain, you are keeping it from getting any better. Hard truths are hard to believe until we want to see things change for the better. Negative thinking brings negative things to come to pass. You must change your thoughts before things can get better! In this post, I will attempt to help you out of your negative world and into a more positive outlook on life. Many people may have tried to help you before without success, this is because you have not been willing to listen or accept what I am going to share with you today.

When you smash your finger, does it hurt more before or after you say ouch? Stupid question, I think not. The way we treat any situation has its own form of therapy to the situation at hand. If we convince ourselves of something, i.g pain, we will feel more of it. I’m not saying it doesn’t hurt, but the way we react to it determines how much we will put up with. This is called human conditioning. From the time we are born until the time we die, we are being conditioned either by the world outside or what is within ourselves. Our body is set up to feel pain, so we know when to remove ourselves from a given situation. If we didn’t feel pain when we touched that hot burner on the stove, we wouldn’t know to remove our hand before the smoke detector told us our hand had just become well done. Pulling away is our body’s way of reacting to what the hand is telling the brain. So we pull away, grasp our hand and head to the sink to run cool water on it. Once the pain eases a little, we inspect our hand then put something on it. This usually consists of maybe some burn ointment and a bandage. But wait, I missed a step. What about the step to yell ouch? This is where our conditioning comes in.

Toddler leaning against her crib, crying.

We are not taught to cry or to grasp our hurt hand. These are natural responses by the body during pain, however we are taught to yell ouch, kick, cuss, scream and run around in circles waving our hurt hand around before doing what is best for us, which in the burn case would be to put cool water on it. How do we learn these other things? By watching the grown-ups reaction when they get hurt or see their child get hurt. This usually starts between nine and eighteen months old. I know that you don’t believe me right now, but just give me a little more time to change your mind. When a child first starts walking, what is the number one thing that’s going to happen? If you said, they will fall down, then you are absolutely correct! What is the second thing that happens? If you said the child will cry, you have maybe mistaken.

Ninety percent of the time, the child will first look around to see if Mom’s watching. If the child doesn’t see Mom, more than likely the child will just get back up and try the walking thing again without the slightest tear being squeezed out. If the Mother runs to her baby, picks him or her up, the waterworks and screaming will begin. Most parents learn this by the time the second child comes along. With the first child it’s run and pick up the child, with the second it’s turn your back before the child sees you looking. You may want to run over, but you have learned the fine art of parenting. This is why the second child is tougher than the first. Let me insert a sentence here now before J get lynched. I’m Not saying to not take care of your child. I’m saying to learn when the child is hurt or when the child just got a bump on the rump by the six-inch drop to the bum. And of course, your precious little toddler has three inches already taken care of by the huge diaper padding he or she has covered that little bum. All you first time parents calm down and before torching my house, read on, and you may learn something. You can get mad all you want, but when that second child comes around, make sure to write me. You can tell me you didn’t change anything raising the second child after you raised your first little bundle of joy.

I guess you noticed by now how I jumped from having the world falling down as an adult to a small bump on the rump of your toddler. Believe it or not, this is not because I’ve been drinking. This is how this post is supposed to be written. I wanted to take you to a place and a time when we wanted to help the little one, to the time when we learned to hold our breath and not run to the child. Now we will get back to the time where your world is falling down around your ears as an adult.

As adults, we have more responsibilities and have already been conditioned all our lives how to react to pain. This is not just for physical pain, but mental pain as well. Once again, I must insert a small sentence here. I am Not saying that people with mental health problems are because of conditioning! I am only talking about people in perfect mental health and causing things to be worse than need be. Furthermore, I don’t need you highly educated doctors giving me the “What to be and Where for’s” about it. Taking us way back to the beginning of the post, there are people that tend to breeze right through the struggle in life. Do they have superpowers and if so, why don’t they share their secret with us? I am now going to answer that question for you. Are you ready? Do you really want to know? Okay, here goes nothing and yet everything in one simple step. Their superpower is within their own minds. They have decided to think positive instead of following the negative worldly conditioning.

Woman with hands on her shoulders, smiling with great pleasure

These people will succeed in the hardest of times because they refuse to let the conditioning control them. It’s as simple as that. I applaud these people for standing on their own two feet, getting done what needs to be done, and refusing to run around waving that burnt hand yelling “Ouch, ouch, ouch!” This goes for their mental state as well. I challenge you to tell one of these people that they can’t do something! Then stand back and watch them figure out a way to accomplish it. These people won’t be poor, or if they are now, they won’t be for long. These people have decided to live above the conditioning. I say bravo!!!

As always, I welcome all comments. I do monitor them, but only to keep this a family oriented blog. As long as you don’t use cuss words or get off-topic, your comment will be posted for all to read. If you want to cuss and or get off-topic, please email me and I will get back to you that way. I want to wish each one of you God’s blessings. Take care, my friends, and don’t forget to sign up for my emails. Might as well, it’s free!!!

Not writer’s block, it’s writer’s pain

      I have to admit, this has not been one of my best weeks. In fact, it probably ranks in the lower half of all weeks that I have lived through. I started writing a few years after a work injury ended my career in mining. Along with helping keep my mind busy, I found that I was also helping others along the way with my thoughts and experiences put in print. Having nerve damage can be very painful at times. Even after years of dealing with this up and down pain and learning to handle what comes with it, there are days and sometimes weeks that are just too much to function with, let alone have the peace of mind to concentrate and write. This has been the case this week, no matter how many times I sat down to write this week’s post, I just couldn’t get started, let alone finish. Don’t get me wrong, I have many post in my head just waiting to come out and share with you, I just couldn’t sit still and concentrate long enough to get it done.

     The problem this week has nothing to do with writer’s block, more like writer’s pain that has been holding me back. I’m not the kind of writer who can create a lot of material and stockpile it for a later date to publish. I am the type that has to write at that moment of inspiration. It is true, I have a few posts started with the possibility of continuing at a later date. In these unfinished posts, none are more than two paragraphs long. I guess you could call them ideas more than posts. These will sit by the wayside until inspiration hits, and I can finish them. Some of these posts will never make it any farther than they are right now. I took some time this week and looked these over, with not even a hint of inspiration to grasp hold of. This is not to say that I couldn’t finish them as we speak, but they would not have the heart and soul I like to poor into my stories. If I ever finish a post without a small trickle of sweat on my brow, I know I haven’t put enough of myself into it yet.

A picture of a starry night with a quote by Billy Scaggs "Why look to the darkness of night when looking at the stars show the light?"
I’m reminded of what I was told about not seeing my inspiration. Thanks Doc

     Today, a very wise man (one of my doctors) suggested I write about how I have felt this week and be true to my word about it. He said that inspiration has been with me all week, I just wasn’t paying attention. I never realized pain could be a form of inspiration, especially someone who deals with it day-to-day.

     After starting this blog to help myself, a little over a year now, I have come to write more for your benefit than mine. This has done more good for me than it did when I started, I now have a reason to write other than keeping my mind busy. I now feel I’m maybe helping others who take a few minutes to read my posts. I feel almost selfish writing this post because I keep thinking, in some way, I am letting you down not posting my normal stuff. At this point, I’m not even sure that I will even publish this.

     I have never and will never believe the pain I go through is in any way worse than someone else’s. There are multitudes of people that are much worse off than I am. I can only write about what I know and let the others tell their own stories. I do, however, share a bond with others suffering from nerve damage. My sciatic nerve was damaged and there are many times I have parts of the left side of my body go numb, itch, ache and worse of all is the burning sensations that come to me. Real bad weeks like this one is when all of these symptoms come on at once and includes not just parts, but the whole left side of my body. When this happens, my normal insomnia becomes super insomnia, which, of course, stacks pain on top of pain without rest to break it up. Alas, here is where the problem of writing becomes huge, or as I like to call it, writer’s pain.

     The more I think about it, I’m becoming convinced that maybe, just maybe, there is someone out there that may get some good out of this post. If this is true and not just me over thinking, I would do that person an injustice by keeping this from being published. As long as I find this to be true and as long as I don’t convince myself otherwise, I will publish this as soon as I finish writing. I want to let others who deal with nerve damage know, I understand. I know how it feels when a slight change in temperature, change in barometric pressure or even a slight breeze can set off the pain in your body. This is no carnival ride, for sure. I guess the worst part about it is when people can’t see your injury, they sometimes don’t believe how you can possibly be hurt. If you’re not wearing a cast, you must be faking. Then comes the time when you find someone else who is suffering from the same thing, and you realize, “Hmm, I’m not crazy after all!” Just because an injury cannot be seen from the outside, doesn’t mean it’s not very real on the inside.

The last paragraph is for those who have nerve damage. Those who don’t share in this infliction, have no idea how it truly affects you. We, who do, learn to hide it the best we can for those who don’t.

I guess I should wrap this up now. Once I got started writing, it was hard to stop because while writing, the pain seems to disappear or at least, I don’t notice it quite so much. Thank you for allowing me to get away from my normal writing this week while I get my body to calm down. I will be posting again next week, going back to my normal writing. Take care, God bless and as always Remember, we are all in this together.

Dreams carry their own form of logic

If you control your dreams, you have all the answers you need

      My first question that I have for those that are reading this is, “Which one of these is the  most surprising statement to you? Is it the title or header for this post?” I ask this for a very good reason. Both of these statements stand very strong by themselves, but they also work very well together. Are you willing to open your mind and consider each of these statements by themselves, as well as combining them together to make a brand-new way of thinking? Are you willing to step outside your comfort zone to add a new perspective to the way you think if it will help you along this trip we call life? If you have said yes to either one of these questions or if curiosity has gotten the better of you, then read on. This will make you look at yourself and your thoughts in a way you may have never thought of before.

     If you are still reading, I will assume you want to know what this is all about. First, I want to say, I am not selling anything. I am not asking for anything from you other than your attention as I try to explain these two. These very different statements can be combined to make a better or maybe even, a smarter you.

Man and woman sleeping in bed sleeping

       Dreams have been studied and explained by some of the smartest people in the world. However, just understanding why dreams happen is only part of the story. The rest has been left out for all of us that are considered average people. These so-called genius people most of the time don’t even realize what they are doing, using dreams to their advantage. They just do it automatically because of the way they think. I know what you are thinking at this point. Why and how does this small-time blogger know something that only the greatest minds in history use automatically? My answer is a simple one. I never said only the smartest people understand this, I said they are the ones that automatically use this without thinking about it. We, on the other hand, must learn to think differently to achieve these answers.

     Let me start with the title to this article, “Dreams carry their own form of logic”. To explain this in layman’s terms, No matter how crazy your dreams are, while you are in them, they make complete sense. You could have a head of a gorilla and the body of a mouse and as long as you are in the dream, this seems to be normal. You might be able to run ten miles in ten seconds, and that is normal as well. Once you wake from the dream, everything is, at best, unusual and at worse absolutely absurd. Why would you dream of such craziness with no rhyme or reason? First off, there is a reason. Your dreams may not make sense, but they are mostly crafted from things you have seen, heard about or even thought about that day and sometimes longer periods of time. For example, watching a horror movie, reading a funny book or just random thoughts throughout the day all jumbled into one scene. In other words, you may have gone to the zoo, watched a comedy television show and studied for a science test all in one day. The sights, sounds and experiences you have been through or thought of that day have all been thrown together in your brain and all showing up at once in a weird dream that night.

      Your worries, successes, conversations and even random thoughts through the day can all be thrown together in one dream. In a lot of ways, this is your brain reliving your day. It also is a way for your brain to figure out a problem that you need an answer to. The second part of that last sentence is where the logic truly lies. In one way, we can think the dream is logical while you are in it, whereas it is completely crazy once you wake up. But if we look at it a little differently, the logic comes in the form of answering the questions you seek. If we think in these terms, then we can search our dreams for the answers we need. If our brain is finding these answers while we sleep, and we learn to find the answers in our dreams, then we can train ourselves to put forth the questions we have and retrieve the answers when we wake up.

       In a round about way, I have just let you in on the secret of the title and the header from above. And now you should be able to see how understanding both of these concepts and training ourselves (our minds) to use both of these together, we can help ourselves in great ways. When I talked about how the smartest people in the world use this without even knowing it, this is true in many ways. These people think along different lines than most of us. Did they train themselves to do so? The answer is a simple, no. These people have always thought along different lines. This is normal to them. We look at and think of them as geniuses where even though they seem so much smarter than you and me, the truth of the matter is they are just thinking differently. With enough practice and will power, we can train ourselves to also think along these lines. We were born with the same brains as they were. There are multitudes of highly educated people who have come to learn these concepts while studying to be a therapist. This same therapist are the ones you go to learn what your dreams mean.

Someone writing out E=MC on a chalkboard

       Here’s the question you have to ask yourself now. Are you willing to change who you are to live with all the answers you seek? Sounds good right? Be careful how you answer. As I said above, this will change who you are. If you’re happy being you, then don’t go overboard with this concept. Instead, just learn to put forth your questions to yourself before going to sleep. Don’t dwell on these questions, keeping you awake. Just ask yourself a question and let it go. Your brain will work on the solution while your body rest. Pay attention to your dreams, look past all the craziness and only search for the answer to the question you asked yourself. The answer is there. Your brain has found the solution already. Let this solution come out, and don’t distract yourself because you had a gorilla head and the body of a mouse. Look farther and find out you, with your gorilla head and mouse body, were writing out a math problem on a chalkboard. If you look at the answer at the bottom of the chalkboard, you discover that was actually the answer you were seeking while building the deck on your house and having trouble with the solution to a measurement going around that certain place in the building process.

       You can always go to a therapist to learn what your dreams mean. I support this decision, and in no way would I suggest different. These people are trained to sort out your dreams for you. These times are when you need help with the whole dream and not just part of it. What I am suggesting here is not figuring out a whole dream, but just a small part that answers certain questions you seek the answers to.

      I know this is a lot to take in and some will even say that I am full of fluff but I have one more thing to tell you before I end this post. The answers that I have suggested here all came from posting these questions to myself before sleeping. I have searched for these answers for quite some time. With pieces and parts over several sleep sessions. This is what I have learned from putting the questions to myself before sleeping. After coming to these conclusions for myself, I have tested my solutions over a few years. I have found it works and has helped me in many ways including some of the post I have written, even this one here.

      I have worked on this post for a long time and have finally decided to write it out. Furthermore, I hope in some way that I have helped you find the answers that you seek. Take care and as always Remember, we are all in this together.

My squirrel hunting cat

     Every once in awhile, I enjoy writing about  something a little different. I choose to write about some of the experiences I have lived through. I enjoy sharing these tidbits of my life. If you are following my blog, you have noticed how I throw these funny yet true stories in every so often. Most of these stories involve me learning a lesson the hard way, usually showing comedy with me being shown as the butt of the joke. In all of these post there is also a lesson that I have learned and passed to you, hopefully helping you not make the same silly mistakes. I have had great success with these post and continue to go back through my memory to pull one out every now and then. This story is one that involves an amazing little creature I had the pleasure to witness at his absolute finest. For once, I didn’t make a grand mistake making me the stooge in an event of my life. Actually, there’s no funny in this one, just pure amazement. I hope you will continue to read and allow me to introduce you to “Smokey” my truly amazing cat!

     I had this cat that was the best darn  squirrel hunting dog that I ever owned. Did I say dog? He might as well have been. I know that just sounds plain crazy to start my story  like that but when I explain farther, you will think that was the best way to start after all. Spending my teenage years in the Ozarks of Missouri, I did alot of hunting for various reasons. Sometimes the reason fell upon food for my family, other times it was for the hides so rich people could wear strange clothing. If you have never lived in the country, you probably wouldn’t understand the need for hunting. It’s probably not a far stretch that you city folk wouldn’t understand the pure joy of hunting either. The joy of hunting is a pleasure that is hard to explain. Was it blood lust? No, it is the joy of being in the woods, watching and listening to everything around you. It brings a special piece to one’s self. It settles the mind and teaches us the gift of the great outdoors. The hunt is the necessary part, the other is the pleasure one is given for such an adventure.

     Part of hunting some times includes a good hound dog who can lead you to prey one seeks. A good squirrel dog will drive squirrels up a tree and run around barking, keeping the squirrel treed. This term treed means just what it sounds like, the dog will keep the squirrel in one tree, not able to flee to another tree. Once his master finally gets there, this brilliant dog will walk around to the opposite side of the tree, giving the hunter a clear shot at his prey. For those of you whom have never payed attention to squirrels before, when you are walking towards the tree the squirrel occupies, he will climb around to the opposite side, staying out of your view and in a safer place. This leads us to the good hunting dog I spoke of. The hunter once taking up his position at the tree will signal his companion. This brilliant animal will do what he is taught and circle around to the opposite side of the tree. Once he is in position, he will growl, bark and jump up against the tree. The prey will see this craziness and want to get to a safer position, climbing around the tree away from the danger to the opposite side. What the squirrel has now done is take himself away from something that can’t get to him into the sights of something that can, the hunter!

Gray cat laying down
This is not Smokey but could be his twin

       I feel this is the time to introduce you to the cat I had back then. His name was Smokey. I named him that for the most obvious  reason. He was gray from the top of his head to the bottom of his feet. There wasn’t a speck  of any other color on him. Smokey was a great friend to me. Living on a farm, we had lots of cats but Smokey was the only one I liked. As he reached adulthood, I noticed that Smokey started following me on my hunts. “Stupid cat, he thinks he’s a dog” I thought. Later on he would be known as a genius kitty by me.

       I went for a squirrel hunt one day and happened to catch a glimpse of Smokey following me through the woods. Once again all I could think of was, stupid cat. All of the sudden I seen some squirrels looking for nuts around this large oak tree. I slowly kneeled down and patiently watched these little creatures running to and fro. It dawned on me that I hadn’t heard Smokey moving behind me. I knew if he was moving around, he would have to make noise in the dry leaves that covered the floor of the woods. Did he go back home? Nope. As I slowly turned to look behind me. There he was, maybe fifteen feet behind me, sitting still as a brick wall. Another thought jumped into my head. This stupid cat is going to run across them leaves on the ground and alert the squirrels of my location. This isn’t what was happening, he just sat there, watching with me as still as he could be. He’s not crouched down waiting to leap, just sitting there patiently watching along with me.

     A little while past and I watched as the squirrels headed up this other tree, maybe one hundred feet away. This is when I slowly started my walk to their location. I would have them treed and the only problem I would have now would be to get them in my sights to shoot them. I could have shot one from my original position but I would lose track of the others and probably wouldn’t be able to get them. When hunting, I always believed I should bring home enough for at least one good meal for my family. Any less than that and I would feel like I failed the reason for the hunt.

Gray squirrel in a tree

     As I got within fifty feet of the tree, I stopped and waited for the first squirrel to get curious enough to come around to my side of the tree. I knew this would take awhile since I didn’t have a dog or a hunting partner to walk to the other side. I waited maybe five minutes and I heard something coming from up from behind me through the dead leaves. I turned and seen that it was Smokey. I thought once again, “stupid cat.” I believe he must have read my mind. He must have been thinking, “I’ll show him who’s a stupid cat!” All of the sudden Smokey ran past me and headed for the squirrel tree! What the heck is he doing? When he reached the tree, he slowed down and slowly walk to the other side. Once there, he jump up on the tree and ran up about ten feet. I was surprised to see he looking around the tree, where he had stopped, right into my eyes. Best that I could come up with was him asking if he was in the right place. Of course he may have been thinking, “stupid human. Here I am running the squirrels to his side and all he can do is stare at me.”

      Once Smokey was in position, the squirrels worked their way around to the opposite side of where he was. This put the three squirrels on my side. It caught me by such a surprise, that it took me a minute to get through my brain what was happening. Once the shock left me, I picked up my rifle and was able to get all three squirrels, Smokey had sent to me. When the squirrels hit the ground, Smokey came down out of the tree and ran towards me. Once again, shock hit me. This cat was running towards where the loud sound had just originated from. Wow, that is the best squirrel hunting dog I had ever witnessed and it is feline not canine!

       I took the squirrels home and prepared them for my Mom’s famous squirrel and dumplings. I relived the moment of the hunt while sharing my story with my Mom and Dad. My Mom thought it was a sweet story, while my Dad ask what I had been smoking. I’m serious Dad. It really happened just like I said. I don’t think he believed me at the time but he would in the near future.

     I went out many times squirrel hunting and every time Smokey went with me. Not only did he go but every time he would do the same thing as before, jumping up on the opposite side of the tree, giving me the clear shot I needed. My Dad finally had enough of my story telling about Smokey, so one day, he decided to go on the hunt with me. Smokey followed us out and when we got the squirrels in the tree, Smokey once again showed his trick. My Dad was absolutely floored. He had just witnessed this with his own eyes and still had trouble believing what he had just seen.

     I continued to go hunting with Smokey over the next two squirrel seasons. No matter how many times I seen Smokey do his little trick, it was still hard to believe. Smokey passed away towards the end of the second season. I guess I should’ve sent my story to the papers at that time but I don’t think they would’ve printed such a crazy story.

     I have had a few cats since then but none with the talent that Smokey had. I hope you have enjoyed my story. It really did happen, crazy as it seems. For those of you that are against hunting, I’m sorry if I offended you. For those of you that enjoy hunting, I hope you have the fortune of a talented cat that helps you on your hunting trips. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

Grief takes it’s own path

     I wanted to start this post by telling you that I have had a hard time writing this week. This has nothing to do with writers block or anything even in the near vicinity of such. This has to do with my thoughts and me this week. I started this blog as a form of therapy for myself and never expected much more from it other than that. I have since gained readers of my work and have felt a responsibility to those that follow this blog. In one way it lifts my spirits to know that others would take the time to read my stories. When I hear that one of my family members enjoyed something I wrote it is one thing but when a stranger enjoys something I write, it becomes so much more. I start believing in myself and feel the need to continue putting my thoughts into print for you.

Man sitting at a desk with a laptop open
This is my therapy

     When I started this blog, I was in a bad state mentally. I felt a certain despair that I couldn’t even explain to myself, let alone anybody else. I became disabled from an accident that I had while working in the mines. I sustained nerve damage that put me out of work for good. For someone like me, this was a devastating thing to happen, not because of the injury but because of not being able to work anymore. I have held a job in some form or another since I was seventeen years of age. Well, that is untrue I suppose. Seventeen was when I worked for a place that I started paying taxes. I was much younger doing jobs for cash. Whether it was mowing lawns, hauling hay, working on cars in my dad’s shop or working in my mom’s grocery store. So when I got hurt, I felt unwanted and unneeded, even though this was not true in anyway, shape or form. My wife and children still needed me to take care of things around our little farm.

     I went into a deep depression and tried to hide it the best that I could. Once i started writing, it seemed to help more then all the drugs the VA has me on. However,  sometimes it still catches up to me and it’s very hard to shake. That’s what has been going on with me this week. I haven’t been able to sleep and the little bit of sleep that I have gotten has been very restless. I have opened my blog many times this week wanting to sit down and write but without the full focus that I always use when I write. I knew I needed to write not just for me but for you as well. I have finally been able to sit down and do what needs to be done. I want to thank each and every one of you for spending some of your precious time reading my words.

Without having an outlet for my brain to focus on, my depression would become widespread. It is because of you, my readers, that I feel I have a purpose outside of my home again. Thank you for reading. Now that I have gotten that out of my brain and down in print, it’s time to give all of you one of my post that you expect and I feel the need to write each week. I hope you enjoy this post and relay it to your friends. I call this “Grief takes its own path”. Grab a cup of coffee, pull up a chair and join me in the little journey that I have written for you this week.

     When someone passes on to the great beyond, they leave others behind to grieve. All people grieve in different ways. There is no right or wrong way to do this. Some people find themselves breaking down in a pool of tears. Others will never show any signs of even caring for the person that has just been laid to rest. There will be some that will shut down and not want to talk about it, while others want to tell everyone they run into how they are feeling.

Men with umbrellas attending a funeral

     There’s not a particular path to grieving. No one can say, this is the way it’s supposed to be. There are people out there that will try to tell the world how to grieve but they are speaking way above their heads when they do. If someone says that you are supposed to grieve a certain way, they are totally wrong. This is a misconception and should not be forced on others. If you feel the need to bawl your eyes out or not shed a tear at all, that is completely normal for you in this situation. Just because a person doesn’t cry at a funeral, doesn’t mean they are not grieving. Maybe this person will cry later by themselves in the closet. Maybe this person feels that if they cry, they have somehow hurt their memories of the person laid to rest. This is a individual decision of everyone of us. Sometimes it hits in a way that we have no control over.

     I beseech you not to hold it against a person just because they don’t grieve the same way as you. The ones that truly have a problem are the ones that fake a certain kind of grieving just to make others feel secure. This is a terrible way to be and in my book, just a big lie. You be who you are and don’t change just to make others around you happy.

       The path of grief comes in many ways and  alot of the time will surprise the person themselves when it happens. Case in point, I have known many close people to me that have passed on. Some have caused me to break down in tears. Some have caused me to go into more of a state of shock, showing little to no emotion at all. There has even been cases that have caused me to show no evidence of emotion for weeks and then break down in tears. In all these cases, my grief showed up naturally in very different ways and yet it didn’t mean that one person meant more to me than the others. I had absolutely no control to how my grieving process would come or if it would show up at all.

People standing by a casket while the pastor reads from the Bible

     Some people can show their emotions of a person passing, the same way every time. When this happens, it makes me wonder if they are true to their grief or if they are pulling off the big fake for others to witness. Maybe that is how grief really does show up for them. Once again I can say, the only person that knows for sure if you are truly showing your grief or if you are faking, is you. Just remember not to judge others on their grieving process because you don’t know what they feel in their heart. Only they know what’s going on with themselves.

I guess the reason this subject came up in the depths of my brain is because I have known so many that have died in the last month or so. Let me throw this out there just incase any of you attend my funeral. When the time comes, I want you guys to throw a big party. You have plenty of time to cry later. By the way, I’m planning on being around for a long time yet. Take care my friends. Thanks for reading and giving me the feeling of being needed. Remembe, we are all in this together.

Love like your pet and end war!!

     If only humans could love each other like our pets love us. We have all heard about unconditional love and yet we know nothing about it. If you would like to see the true meaning of unconditional love, take a look into your dog’s eyes. I choose a dog because they are the one animal that truly has this kind of love for their owner. A dog will lay his life down for you even if you have mistreated him. Now if you are mistreating your pet, then I hope you are punished.

White labrador retriever

     We as humans have the mindset to be who we want to be and yet we tend to choose destruction ove.r love for one another. I don’t understand how humanity could make such a terrible mistake like this. Why, in this day and age, do we have wars with each other? Wars are totally unnecessary in these times. I shall explain farther so as not to sound completely incompetent. Wars are always started for one of three reasons. First one is of course, religion. The second falls under the heading of resources. The final is for complete control.

      Talking about the third reason “complete control” is what is happening right now in Ukraine. When this happens, it is always started by some crazy person who wants to rule over as many people as possible. If you believe this will end in Ukraine (if not stopped by someone), you are sadly mistaken. This is the dumbest war that can be started with no real reason to do it other than for control. If the people of the evading country could love others the way their pets love them, they wouldn’t follow a crazy man. Some brave person or persons would remove this virus from power and there wouldn’t be a war in the first place. The ones who follow the crazy person at the top have no love for their fellow humans. They are also cowards for not stopping this crazy person in the first place. People will argue that the people have no choice but to follow because the army of the nut case at the top is too powerful. I answer this by saying, the army is the ones who cowardly follow the nut ball at the top and have no love for fellow humans including their own people that they are putting in the situation of having to follow.

A sign saying if Russia stops, no more war
If Ukraine stops, no more Ukraine

     I have been watching the destruction of Ukraine with a heavy heart. The one thing I can say is the people of Ukraine are the toughest people I have ever witnessed. They are standing strong and fighting back the evil that is invading their land. These people are heroes in my book. The invading Russian troops are cowardly for following such evil and not standing up for humanity. They see what they are doing and continue to blindly follow something that they themselves do not believe to be right.

    I did mention that there were two other reasons for war. The first being for religious purposes and trying to force others to follow their views. This kind of war is also stupid because over the centuries of these wars being fought, these have never won anything. There are more religions today then there were hundreds of years ago. This says that there will be more religions created as more time passes. There is always someone who will come up with something different and gain a following. Think about it, during these hundreds of years, how many wars have been started for religious beliefs and how many new religions are there today? I want to make this perfectly clear, religions are man made! The more time that passes, the more people will come up with new religions. So starting a religious war is stupid because it doesn’t change anything. Before I leave this paragraph, I must say that I am a Christian and I am just explaining how starting a religious war is stupid. Protecting your religious beliefs against an invading force is very much warranted.

       The other type of war is for resources. This type of war is usually mixed with one of the other two types of war. Resources are usually a secondary thought and a bonus to the invading force but not the first reason for the war to be started. So when we examine it, there are actually only two reasons for war to be started, religion or domination with resources as a bonus for the invading force.

     I was not going to write this post and I must say that it is not something I enjoyed to do. I do feel like I must say something because of what is happening to people that truly don’t deserve what is happening to them right now. It is hard to see the rest of the world standing on the side lines and watching  something so horrific happening and doing nothing to help. I am saddened by the lack of love in so many. If only they would take a minute and see the love their pets have for them and learn to love the same way, this kind of thing would never happen in the first place. Along those same lines, while it is happening, other countries would step up and stop this horrible unjustified war. May God be with the Ukraine people in their time of need.

      If you have read my post before you know that I always end saying how we are all in this together. Today I will not end my post like that for the Ukraine people are standing alone and we are not in this together. Remember to love one another as your pets love you. We can live in peace if only we will do this simple thing. Look into them puppy eyes and learn what it is to have unconditional love.

We all start with pure souls

     There’s nothing like a sleeping child, so peaceful and so innocent. It amazes me to no end how such a peaceful creature can grow up to be a monster. Not all children fall into this category but there are far too many that do. Who’s fault is it? Is it the parents, society, the change of the times or the devil himself? I believe that any one of these or a combination of two or more can change a person for the worse.

     I have known people that said that a certain bad person was a terrible child growing up. This may be true but what caused the child to be so? Was this child part of a broken home, picked on constantly by the school bully or possibly laughed at for being different from the other children in the classroom? Whatever it was that sowed the seed of evil into this child, one thing is for certain in my opinion, the devil had his hands evolved in this process. You can say what you will but this is the most logical excuse for such a transformation. Children are not born evil because they are not born with the knowledge of evil. Evil must be learned.

     How can you become something that you know nothing about? Something causes this sweet child to become a terror later in life. Circumstances that are introduced into this child’s life has to be the cause of something that changes how this child will view life. If love is not introduced to this child, then evil has an opening into this child’s heart. Evil is the opposite of love and we shall follow one or the other throughout our lives. It is true that one can change from evil to good or visa versa but there will be something that happens to cause this person to change.

      The most evil of man started life with a clean soul. Somewhere along the way something had to have happened to put a stain on this clean soul to create the evil that comes forth in life. Something positive must happen for someone to revert back to the good from evil. Most of the time this comes from finding something good to lead this person away from the evil that they have lived with up to that point.

     So what is this great force that can transform an evil person into a good person once more? What do we see that can take us from a destructive life into a productive life once more? Is it the luck of the draw. Does the world have pity on us and allow us to see the good instead of the bad all the time? Do we see someone that is more evil than us and it makes us change our ways? What can we do that will rid this person or ourselves of this hate and hurt built-up inside of us and others?

     What shall we do to rid ourselves and others of the evil within? The answer is extremely simple actually. The opposite of hate is love. The opposite of luck is faith. The opposite of the devil is God. We have the ability to change not only ourselves but the others around us by seeing the good through the bad and making the correct choices. Others who see how much better our lives are by using the good, faith and God will soon want to try this for themselves. The most horrible person can have a change of heart if only someone will show them how. If you live with peace in your heart and allow it to show through your everyday life, others will want to be like you. They will pay very close attention to you because they desire that peace that you possess. This is human nature. Nobody wants to feel hurt and hate. People desire what you have and will do what it takes to find the peace you have for themselves.

Baby looking into camera playing with his toes

    I want to make this as clear as I possibly can. We all start off life with a clean soul with no hate within it. We learn hate, it is not inherited. The next time that you have the chance to look into a baby’s eyes, look and see if there is love or hate in them. Remember, the eyes are the windows to the soul. I am 100% sure that baby only has love within their eyes. Think about this my friends. Feel free to respond to this post. I look forward to talking with each and everyone of you. This being said, I want you to always Remember, we are all in this together.

Your choice – cause pain or blessing

Every choice we make through life will leave ripples throughout the rest of our lives. We can make up for mistakes but there will be some sort of ripple like dropping a stone in water. Using this same prospective with good things we choose, once again there is a ripple effect that will spread. With these so called “ripples“, there is cause and effect to others around you. Others will fall within these ripples of your life choices. So not only are you affecting your own destiny, you are in turn, causing changes in other destiny’s as well. The sooner that you come to this conclusion, the sooner you can change the outcome of not only yourself but many of those around you.

Splash in green water making ripples

Most people look at these things as affecting your immediate family but that is just the tip of the iceberg. If you make a decision to drive your car while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and wreck into a store front, you have just changed the lives of several people. One event of your own choosing can and will cause the ripples to spread, not only to the ones who happen to be at the store but to their families, the store owner, the stock holders, the police and fire departments and the list goes on and on. Now this maybe a drastic way of explaining the bad but it gets my point across.

Let’s take a look at the good that can be spread. If you help someone in need, whether it be with cash, food, clothing or a roof over their head, you have started a good set of ripples. Not only have you helped this person in need but others have probably witnessed your kindness. This will not only help the one you helped but the ones that seen this as well. All of the sudden these witnesses will want to help someone too. This is because, whether we want to believe it or not, people tend to follow other people’s lead. A kind heart will help others find kindness in their own hearts. And, of course, the person that you helped will want to help someone in need somewhere down the line.

I said earlier in this post that the choices we make in life will affect the rest of our lives. I stand by this, now let me explain why. Once you choose to do good or bad, it is done. As of yet, we don’t have a time machine to go back and undo what has been done. All we can do is learn from these things and decide whether we want to continue doing the same things. History is History and cannot be undone but we can learn from it and take a different path if we choose to. Key word here is “Choose“. We must make an effort if we want a different outcome next time around.

The question you must ask yourself is; what kind of ripples do you want to be known for? It doesn’t take any great feat to change the lives of others. One simple choice can cause a world of hurt or a world of blessings. The good news is, we have the ability to choose a different course of action! We may have caused ourselves and others pain but we can choose to change and hope for forgiveness from those we have hurt. On the other side of that, if you have been hurt by someone’s actions, will you hold a grudge or forgive them? One piece of advice I will give you, holding a grudge will do nothing good for you but forgiveness will free your soul. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

My enemy? Not as far as you know

     I have not truly had someone to call my enemy in many years now. I treat everyone that I meet the same as anyone else. There is an old saying that says, “Keep your friends close but your enemies closer.” I learned a long time ago that the best way to achieve this is to not have enemies in the first place. This is easier than you think to accomplish.
I am now in my fifties and have met many people throughout my life. If you were to ask anyone of those, you would hear the same thing over and over, “Oh, that Billy and I have always been good friends.” This in some cases maybe true but in a lot of cases, just plain fluff! The difference is, I know whom I consider my friend and whom I don’t. The other person has no idea which side of the isle they actually occupy unless I allow it to be known. This has been a strategic ploy that I have laid out over several years.

Four friends laughing together

  Why, you may ask, should I keep my feelings to myself when it comes to the other person? It’s simple really, with the ones that I don’t like not knowing, I have no one that will ever become my enemy. That is unless they were to do something so drastic, that I would have to let them in on my little secret. Without an enemy, I have no drama to deal with and I can just go about my way. I make sure the people, that I truly do think of as friends, know without a doubt that they are my friends. The funny part is, even my closest friends have no idea of anyone that I don’t like. I never talk ill of anyone unless, like I said before, they do something so bad, I cannot keep my secret about how I really feel.

     The main way to find out if you are on the wrong side of the isle with me is to cause harm to someone in my immediate family or a very close friend. In that case, you would find out very quickly that you are on my bad side.
After putting this ploy into affect, going on twenty years now, my life has become so much simpler. I no longer have to wander if someone is talking bad about me behind my back because I give them no reason to. Of course there are always those that cannot say anything good about anyone. Those people are surprised when they find out, I just laugh it off as though they were joking all along. The truth of the matter is, I am just jotting it down in my memory to possibly pull out if and when it is ever needed. I may get mad at this person for the comments they have made but they will never know how I truly feel.

   Basically what this comes down to is another old saying, “If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” Granted, I do take this one a step farther. I may mind but will not give said person the satisfaction of knowing so. My belief carries a slightly different approach. If someone is talking bad about me and I don’t acknowledge the hurt they have caused, then the saying should be, “If I don’t mind it’s because they don’t matter.”

    I think if more people would put my philosophy into effect, there would be a lot less hurt in the world. I hope this post has touched your heart and helped you along your way through life. Take care and Remember, we are all in this together.

Safety guy learns humility

It’s Raining Oil Mr. Safety!

      I have been asked numerous times by many people through the years, “How is it that even when you get upset it’s not for long?” The short answer to this question is humor and a lot of mistakes. Now I’m going to try and explain the long version. Even though I believe that I possess a certain ability to see humor in almost everything I see or do, there’s more to it. First off it is true that you need to have the ability to laugh at yourself. Believe me when I say, I give myself a lot of material to work with. If something crazy is going to happen, I’m probably the one it’s happening to. The following true story will help you get the idea of what I’m talking about.

     I was working for an open pit copper mine in Arizona and at the time I was the union safety representative for my crew. I was driving a 320 ton haul truck, The truck I was driving broke down so a supervisor picked me up in his pickup  and took me to another truck to finish my shift. Upon pulling up to this other truck, I noticed there was a 55 gallon steel barrel of used oil about ten feet away from the left front tire. This was left by the mechanics who were working on this haul truck.When you are in one of these trucks the number one hazard is blind spots. It takes about twenty-five feet away from the driver’s seat to see the ground. You think that’s a lot? Well, it takes about a hundred and fifty feet away from the truck to see the ground out of the passenger side window while sitting in the driver’s seat. This is due to the cab being positioned on the left side of the truck. It’s approximately twenty feet to the far right of the truck. When you are in the cab it’s like sitting on the roof of a one story house with a peaked roof. ( I wanted to put that out there to give you a sense of size ).

     When we pull up to this truck and I see this barrel of oil, my safety instincts kicked in and I knew I would have to tell the supervisor about it. Before I continue, did I mention I am the acting safety representative at this time? Yes, I know I did already. Being the good safety guy I am, I pointed this out to the supervisor and said that because this truck is parked in a parking area that we use all the time, this barrel needs to be moved as soon as possible. I went on to say that if someone were to run over it it would be a big deal due to a hazmat spill. I knew he knew this but I felt important informing him anyway. ( I got what I like to refer to as the big head, also known as self importance ). He agreed and told me he would have the mechanics come get it after I left.

     I was sooo proud of myself! I put my big lunchbox on the steps of the truck and walked around and did my safety inspection of the truck. After I felt that the truck was okay, I grabbed my big lunchbox and went up the ladder to the deck where the cab is. I did my inspection of the top, put my big lunchbox in the passenger side of the cab, went around to the driver’s side and started the truck up. Once again, did I mention I’m the safety guy? I got my assignment from dispatch and did one more walk across the deck to make sure everything and everyone was clear of the truck before I left. Remember how close the barrel was and how far away from the truck it takes to see the ground? I sat myself down, buckled my seat belt and away I went.

I moved about 15 feet away from my parking spot and slammed on the brakes because all of the sudden there’s this black rain pouring down the windshield and my drivers side door. My first thought was, did the engine just blow up? That didn’t seem right, I mean I didn’t hear a loud bang or anything. What’s going on? By now there is oil all over the cab and across most of the 20 feet of deck. Strangely enough though, with engine compartment located on my right side and yet the passenger window is clean? If the engine blew it’s top, shouldn’t that window be covered in oil instead of the driver’s door? Out of the blue, it hit me like a ton of bricks, OH No!!! This great safety guy that just got done telling the supervisor how that barrel of oil had to be moved before the next truck parked there has, ( in all his stick up the butt greatness ), just ran over that same barrel of oil!!

After shaking my head and feeling completely stupid, I had to take a minute to laugh at myself. After this short laughing episode and calling myself a few choice words, it was time to get serious again. I have to call that same supervisor back on the radio and prepare for the butt chewing I was about to receive. “Hello? Umm yes sir, I need you to come back here please”, I said. Why? came the reply. “Umm, well sir I would rather talk to you when you get here”, I answered back. I was surprised what his next question was. “Oh Billy, you didn’t?”, he exclaimed. “Umm, can you just come here please sir?”. My reply was weak because of the embarrassment I felt. The same supervisor that dropped me off was back within ten minutes. I got an unexpected surprise, when he drove up, I’m standing out on the deck (oil dripping all around me) and he didn’t get out of his pickup shaking his head and yelling at me. Instead, he got out of his pickup shaking his head and laughing so hard he could barely stand up! I didn’t think it was that funny. Well, it didn’t feel like it then but thinking about how I must have looked with the oil dripping all aroundme, it probably was that funny.

After he regained control,  he told me that because the truck was loaded, I would have to take it to the dump and empty it out. After I did that, he would have dispatch send me to the washbay by the truck shop so they could wash the truck off. I didn’t want too do this because I didn’t want anyone seeing me driving a truck covered in oil and asking what happened. He gave me a huge roll of paper towels so I could clean the widows enough to see and then I was heading to the dump.

Black and white picture of two 400 ton mine haulage trucks taken from deck of a mine haulage truck

After dumping the truck, I got another surprise. Dispatch told me the washbay already had a truck in it and I had to go get reloaded and run one more load before getting this nasty thing cleaned up. If that wasn’t bad enough, they were sending me to get loaded all the way on the other side of the mine! Well, I did it and they made sure everybody seen me. Finally, I get to the washbay and the guys there told me they haven’t had a truck there all day. This fine supervisor wanted to make sure I learned my lesson and let everybody know about it too. Chalk one up for him! He also taught me some humility. I learned this lesson like most lessons I have learned, the hard way. I wasn’t near the cocky safety representative that I had been before this incident.

I still tell this story when I can. Even though it was humiliating at the time, it was also one more thing showing me that you have to be able to laugh at yourself. I gained respect from the people I worked with. This was because when they asked what happened, I was honest and told them the truth. This is just one instance through my life that has humbled me and taught me to learn to laugh at myself when I mess up. Holding anger or embarrassment does nothing but cause pain to your body. Laughter will lift your spirits and help you get through any dumb thing you may do. If you have any stories that have taught you humility, I would love to hear them. Don’t be afraid to share your story because the ones you are talking to, have stories of their own. Take care. God bless and Remember, we are all in this together.

Cameras at the mine

  My debut on screen

     I would have to say this was maybe the hardest, craziest and possibly the most embarrassing thing I have ever done. I was actually in a television show for one episode. The show is Heavy Metal Task Force. I guess you could say I had a starring role even though I didn’t feel that it was.

Clapperboard used for takes while making films

     A few years back, this television show decided to do an episode at the copper mine I was working in at the time. I happened to be the safety representative for my crew that they were filming. It was the luck of the draw I guess that they used my crew. Actually it was because we happened to be on day shift at the time. Quite a few of my coworkers and friends were in the film as well.

     My job as the safety guy was to follow this film crew around and make sure they were safe because they were filming in a working mine. I didn’t think this would be a very difficult job. Boy was I in for a surprise! First off I would like to say that film crew camera men and women are a very unique crowd. I think your nuts but you do get the hard shots of film that make it look so real! The camera man that was on this crew really kept me on my toes. I thought at any given moment, I was going to have to call for mine rescue to pull a body out of a 150 foot drop. This guy was relentless, positioning himself in places that would make a bird nervous and here I was responsible for his safety. “What is this guy, part mountain goat?” I can honestly say, I walked around with my underwear sucked up my dark side because of all the times I had to catch my breath.

Open pit copper mine

     In comes the producer, whom was very good about getting my attention so the cameraman could do his job. I have always been a talkative person but this guy was the equivalent of three teenage girls. Questions, stories, suggestions, whatever it took to keep my attention. I have to say, he was very good at it! The only one that I would consider halfway sane was the sound guy. Yet he did a great job of keeping my attention as well. These guys worked very well as a team for sure.

     All three of these gentlemen were very kind to me but they wore me out trying to keep up with them. We would get out of the Ford Expedition on one of the higher levels of the mine and they would all take off in different directions at once. Of course they were doing their individual jobs but how am I supposed to keep an eye out in three different directions? And talk about fast, these guys were like gazelles. They would have any two year old gasping for breath inside of ten minutes. This film crew would get done with their individual jobs in one place, pile back in the Expedition and off we would go to our next destination. Even though I was driving and still answering a billion questions, this was the time I would have a chance to slow my heart rate down again before the next stop.

     I was asked by the producer to find certain types of people that I thought would do well on film. I would take them to these people for ride alongs in heavy equipment and for interviews from others about their jobs. (To all the miners that were in this film, let me apologize now, most of you were handpicked by me). I can confess this now because I’m retired and am fairly safe from any retribution.

      One situation that came up was wet weather driving. We had a lot of footage but the problem was it wasn’t raining and the producer said they needed rain for the story. When I asked why, he said that he heard from a couple of the haul truck drivers that that’s when it gets crazy out here. I told him he was correct because I was a haul truck driver myself. We had good cloud coverage but no rain. Then I had an idea that almost got me into a lot of trouble. I suggested that I could have a water truck driver over wet a section of road and they could get shots of the mud and back sprayers of the water truck for rain. Along with this suggestion, we could go up to one of the dumps that were being leached with all the sprayers going. All this sounded good to him and we did this. Then the request came from him to see a haul truck sliding. I dont know what I was thinking upon this request but I had another brilliant idea. Me and my alligator mouth, now overloading my Mickey Mouse arse, is about to cause a painfully close call.

Black and white picture of a 400 ton mine haulage truck

     I got ahold of a good haul truck driver I knew and asked him to do a small fishtail slide on the section of road we just had soaked down. This driver wanted to do a good job for me and boy did he! It wasn’t a small slide, it was a Huge slide and he almost lost it! I could see management’s eyes now while I try to explain that it was my idea and the wreak of a three million dollar truck was my fault. On top of that, other drivers seen that we were filming the slide and decided to help out by sliding their trucks too! After three trucks had done this, it had messed up the road to the point no trucks could come down that hill without sliding, wanting to or not. Three,six,nine million dollars, how many millions am I going to be responsible for?!! Everybody made it safely and I breathed a sigh of relief.

     The next request was from the cameraman who wanted to get a close-up of a haul truck driving by. So I had a haul truck drive slowly past us as I’m begging the cameraman not to get too close. So far so good. Other than the hundred heart attacks I have had so far, nobody had gotten hurt or wreaked any equipment. All this stuff had happened in a few days time. Of course with everything these three men were putting me through, it would be the longest three days of my life.

    There was this one point where we were driving up onto one of the dumps. I was as helpful as I could be giving them ideas along the way and kidding around with them about anything and everything. As we were driving across one of the dumps, I was goofing off and made a comment about seeing money and not dirt ahead. This being said, I had no idea that I was being filmed from the passenger side of the back seat. Ultimately, this ended up in our little movie.

Tv cameraman with ball cap on backwards looking through camera

     The producer told me he needed a supervisor to be on film for the story. The supervisor they wanted couldn’t come out because he was in meetings all day. That supervisor and all others wouldn’t be available in time to do what we needed to get accomplished. So the producer asked me to play a supervisor just so when a supervisor was available they could piece them in. Sounded reasonable the way he explained it. What did I know about movie making, I mean I’m just a miner. Besides, I might have a little fun acting crazy at the supervisor’s expense. There aren’t too many chances you get to make fun of your bosses and not get into trouble.

     Here I was doing all kinds of crazy things on film thinking it was just to set up for the supervisor to be placed into my spot. I had a lot of fun with it. It was like acting without worrying if someone actually seen it other than the one’s around me at the time. Along the way I got a couple of mechanics that I knew to do a little skit for the film. Wow, did they do a great job! Also had the film crew go on board a shovel and film my friend and favorite shovel operator loading trucks and interviewing him. I’m not sure that he has forgiven me for that yet. We went to dispatch and they interviewed and filmed my friend doing his job keeping up with everything going on in the pit.

One man standing by tire, another man standing by bucket of huge mine loader

     The final day came and I was exhausted but we had to film the loader one more time, as we had filmed the loader and operator earlier in this process. That’s when I got the shock I did not expect. While the cameraman and sound guy was filming the loader and operator,  the producer asked me to talk to him in the Expedition. The operator of the loader was also the main safety guy over me, so I said ok as long as I can still see the other two members of the film crew. “Billy, you have done a great job so far and I only need one more thing from you.” the producer said. “What’s that?” I asked. “I need you to sign these papers so we can use the film we have of you and make you the hero in our production.” He said. This was not easy for me to do because, I was just messing around and not being serious at all. The sound guy and cameraman got back in the vehicle and asked the producer if he had asked me yet. I couldn’t believe it, they had all already talk about this probably in the motel they stayed in the night before. The cameraman told me I was good on film and wanted to use the footage. They finally talked me into it and I kinda had a dull pain in my gut because I had just signed to let others see me as the opposite of who I really am.

There was only one part I couldn’t get right on the final day. The producer told me he wanted to take some still film of me for the end. I asked him what he meant and he said it’s what they call a “hero shot” in the film industry. I tried my best to pose for this hero shot but it just wasn’t what they wanted. I think the reason I couldn’t get it right was because they called it a hero shot. I wasn’t any kind of hero, I just played a part in our little film. Maybe if he would’ve called it the still shot or dull shot, I would’ve gotten it right?

     Finally everything was done and we had no idea when our little film would show, what show it would be on or anything for a few months. Finally we got word that our show would be on “Heavy Metal Task Force” season two, episode two. The show finally aired and when I seen how they chopped things up and how they had filmed me without even knowing it on the dump, I was more embarrassed than ever. The one thing I can say was how proud I was of the people I worked with every day. To see my friends doing their jobs on film was a thing of beauty.

       Heavy Metal Task Force always has three different places they are showing on the same episode and we got top billing! If you watch it, you will see how the show starts and finishes with us at the Ray mine just outside of Kearny, Az. You will get to see the names of people in the film but I left their names off here because I didn’t get their approval. I hope you enjoy the film and make as much fun of me as you want. It is pretty funny after all. All the people at the mine have already had a lot of fun at my expense. I still have one guy that calls me “Hollywood” every time I see him. I really don’t mind anymore or I wouldn’t be writing about it. Take care and Remember, we are all in this together.

Watch Heavy Metal Task Force Season 2 on Prime Video! https://watch.amazon.com/detail?gti=amzn1.dv.gti.cca9f723-963a-f870-e6e8-377102d25efb&ref_=atv_dp_share_seas&r=web

Children change parents

Having children changes our whole outlook on life and how we live it. When we become parents, we become different people. We are now responsible for another life not just our own. Our thought patterns become what we would once describe as alien. Is the party really over or is it just beginning? This is definitely determined by how you receive the great gift of parenthood.

Who is ready to be a parent for the first time? Most people would answer this question in one of two ways, either they say they are definitely ready or they say they don’t want children at all. Now the people that commit with the, “I don’t want children” are usually the ones that get the biggest surprise and are transformed into, ” I want more children!” So what happened to them when they received the greatest gift in the world? The answer is, their hearts were all of the sudden changed and love was allowed to flow through. They put aside their selfishness and now it’s all about the child. These people, most of the time, become some of the greatest parents that there are.

A Mother and Father holding their baby in their laps

What about the people that say they are ready for that first bundle of joy? Well, that’s when you see the ones who are overwhelmed by the gift they have received. These parents are the ones who have read all kinds of books and have set their minds knowing every thing about being a parent before the child has even arrived. The very first thing these parents learn, once the child arrives, is they absolutely know nothing about being a parent. All the books that have been studied, all the hours talking to people about becoming a parent and all the preparations made to the child’s room to make it perfect gets thrown right out the window. “That’s not what the book said would happen!” “How can my child find a way to get hurt after making this room so safe?” Why when I use the rocking chair and soothing music, it’s not putting my baby to sleep like the book said?” These are just examples that I’m throwing out but you will find different things that work with some children but not all children. The simple truth is, all people are different and that little bundle of joy you are holding is, well, a people too!

So we have now looked at both extremes of parents. There are also those that fall in the middle of the two, not quite to one side or the other. So if all children are different, then we must change to take care of our child. This little tiny person is going to change who you are whether you like it or not. This baby will also find ways to surprise you and come up with things to do that you never would have dreamed of in a million years. This little bundle of joy will find ways to drive you close to insanity.

Baby laying on a blanket

So if having children is such a chore and causes you grief as he or she grows and learns new things, why do we want them. Why, oh why after having one, would we want another to drive us even closer to insanity? Some would say it’s nature and that, of course is part of it but the main reason we keep having them? Face it it comes down to love. Love, the emotion that no one can explain. Love, the feeling that makes your heart leap.

It’s okay to change into what your baby needs. The greatest gift in the world requires and deserves this change we all go through. When you are down to your last nerve and your beautiful son or daughter is standing on it, just remember, your parents made it through raising you and that last nerve made it through with them! Your child is part of our future and requires your love to flow and teach them so they can hang on to their last nerve when their baby arrives.

You are now a parent and you are no longer who you were. You are now a new person with a new outlook on life. You are now responsible for the gift you have received. Take charge of the situation. Change what must be changed. And most of all, hold true to the love for your child and he/she will hold their love for you. One day all the stresses your child brought to you will be returned to them and you can watch your child down to that last nerve as you sit back and enjoy it as a grandparent.

Grandmother and grandfather holding their grand babies

Who is ready to be a parent? The answer is no one and everyone. You will not be ready to be a parent until you are one. The day you become a parent, you will find that day, that you are now ready.

I hope you enjoyed reading this piece. I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject. Leave your replies in the comments section below. Until next time, take care, God bless and as always Remember, we are all in this together.

Seeking A Higher PoWeR

      It makes no difference what religion you follow, if that is, you follow a said religion at all, we all are seeking a higher power even if that higher power lies within the very body you possess. When it comes right down to it, we are basically working towards the same goal, maybe just following a different book, whether it be fact or fiction. So who is correct and who is following amiss? Are you happy with who you are and where you believe you are heading after you leave this world behind? Do you wake in the morning looking forward to life or groan because life still finds you when you wake? Are you an atheist and believe in nothing past this life other than the worms in your grave for your final destination? Are you a Christian and believe Heaven is preparing a place for you? Where do you stand and are you correct in your beliefs?

Man sitting and thinking in graveyard

     These are questions that are in the heart of everyone of us whether you want to admit it or deny it, it is fact. I have my beliefs, you have yours and that will be as it is until the end of life and we find out who is right and who missed the boat, unless before death you or I change what we believe and follow a different path. I have said this before and I will say it again, I am a Born again Christian and believe that I have a place in Heaven waiting for me. I don’t understand other beliefs as much as I would like to so I could have a better understanding of how others think. I stand by the belief that religion is man made and Christianity is God made. Let me explain this with a little more clarity.

      Within the Christian community their are religious sectors that separates one from the other in various ways. Their are Baptist, Methodist and pentecostal, just to name a few. The differences within these may not mean much to you unless you yourself are a Christian. Basically they all interpret the Holy Bible in a slightly different way but are still following the same Holy scriptures. This means that religion is man’s way of following what God made. We are all Christians ( God made ) following within different religions ( man made ). I hope this helps you understand the difference. I, myself, follow the Holy Bible without being in any certain  religious sect and am bound to the whole book not just the parts and pieces that I feel like being a part of. In other words, if it is written, it is so. If you want to place me into a religious sector, it would be Charismatic Christian, for I believe in the Holy Spirit as is also written. This my friends really paints me into a corner but it is how I am able to get closer to my God that I seek, follow and pray to. I believe if I were to omit parts of the Bible, the word would have no meaning left in it. It’s all or nothing in my view. I believe that I can be forgiven for not adhering to a part or parts if I only ask for forgiveness but when all is said and done, I am still bound by the word.

Praying hands on Holy Bible

      I am not here to preach to you or change your views in any way but rather to explain why I write the way I do and try not to offend anyone who are reading my post. The main thing I am trying to say, in one way or another is, we are all seeking something in the beyond, except atheist which are seeking nothing beyond the grave. As far as atheist go, the one part I don’t understand is during a life and death situation, why cry out to God, if there is no God? This tells me of all the religious beliefs, the atheist are one of whom are believing amiss. To all of us others in this great marble floating in space, ask yourself, “What are my beliefs and are they to the betterment or destruction of mankind?”

     I know that I have given you a lot to chew on in this post and I will probably get a lot of flack from it. That’s okay, I’m a big boy and I can handle it! I challenge you to write what you believe and why in the comments below. I along with others would like to hear your views.

     I wish each and everyone of you a blessed presence within the life you have chosen, no matter whom you follow or don’t. Take care and Remember, we are all in this together.

Ego; tiny word, LARGE implications

Why must we worry how others see us? Why can’t we just be who we are and be happy with it? I am and have been for awhile happy with who I am. I have issues just like everyone else but I put myself out there as who I am and don’t put on a show to please anybody. Just like “Popeye” I am who I am. If you like me, great! If you don’t like me, well that’s fine too. I’m not going to change to please you or anyone else. This may seem harsh to you but it’s true and I have become a much happier person for it. I try to keep that little word “Ego’ as small as I can and I believe that I am better for it.

People who have strong ego’s tend to be so into themselves that others mean nothing to them. For me, I will talk to everyone the same and not change depending on whom I’m talking with. I will treat you with the same respect as I will with anyone else. I have talked with many people who have been high up on the ladder of success as well as those whom are homeless and in despair. If you were to hear me talk with these different people, you will notice that my tone and words will flow the same for each.

The old saying goes, “We all put our pants on one leg at a time”. The gest of this is, no matter how important you think you are, you are no more important as the other person. You may find yourself in an important position in life that comes with more responsibility and the cudo’s that come with it. I am happy for you but I will still treat you with the same respect as anyone else. I’m not telling you this just to make a point, I truly am this way.

We Americans have a important saying that once was and is very important to most and hopefully to all of us again in the days to come. This saying is, “All men are created equal.” I take this very seriously and am not about to change for anybody. All of us were created in God’s image. Some don’t do this justice and it is a shame they don’t take this more seriously.

If you are someone whom has achieved great success, that is a great thing but don’t let your head get so big that it is hard to hold up. Whenever your ego becomes too big, there will be someone who will take away all that you have accomplished. Keep your ego in check and you can be a leader umungst leaders. However, allow that little word “ego” grow into a monster and you will lose in the long run.

I wish you all the success in the world and hope that you become a great leader in whatever you desire. Take care and Remember, we are all in this together.

Age brings strength and toughness through Wisdom

     As I get older, I’m amazed how much tougher I have gotten. I don’t look to show off how tough I can be but when the time comes, I can handle things I would’ve thought twice about in my youth. When I was younger, I had more muscle and less brains. Now I have less muscle but my wisdom has shown me how to use the gift of strength without being muscle bound. I was never a muscle bound boy, let’s get that straight right now but I did have muscle showing and I was fairly strong.

Middle-aged man sitting down reading newspaper

      The difference I guess between then and now is knowing how to use my body and put aside the pain I once wouldn’t have been able to do. If I come across a situation that should be a two man job but I am alone, I can muster up the strength to get the job done. I never could understand how older men with frail looking body’s  could show so much strength when needed. I now understand how this can be, as I am now an older man.

     Explaining this phenomenon would be near to impossible for me to do but I’m going to try to do just that as simply as possible. When we are young, we go at a situation like a bull in a china shop. As we mature, we gain what only can be possible through years of training and experience. This is of course wisdom. Wisdom cannot be taught, it has to be earned through many victories as well as failures. Most of all it’s the failures that teach us the most.

Young man holding baseball bat on his shoulder

      Young, dumb and full of muscles will ultimately get you injured and here lies the lesson, “don’t do it that way again!” Alas, wisdom is starting to take hold in that thick skull. Time and time again, hurting one’s self by picking something up the wrong way or rushing into something before thinking about the situation you are putting yourself into is gaining muscle strains and bruising. Once again I must say this is good training for later in life when the muscles are no longer one of your greatest assets. You now must use the wisdom that has come from the mistakes of the past.

     I guess what I’m trying real hard to get across to you is wisdom is strength in more ways than you can imagine and you will need this great asset when your body starts to show the wear and tear that you have put it through all those years gone by. When your children have grown up and left the household, you will still need to do some of the back breaking work that was there when you had your children to help. Unless you have a lot of money to hire somebody whenever you need to replace that refrigerator, stove, couch or whatever it is that takes strength to move, you must take care of it yourself along with the wisdom you have gained through the years.

Man lifting weights with a Superman shirt on

     When the time comes and you have to push the love seat up the stairs to the second floor where your wife would like to have it in the spare room, you just do it! When your children come to visit and see what you have done, well, you my friend will look like Superman to them. And all it took was a small dose of wisdom and knowing how to use leverage to get the task done. When your children ask how you did it, you can simply smile and say it was your inner brute strength! Let them figure it out when they get to be your age, don’t spoil the wisdom trail they must follow to get where you are. Besides, they haven’t gained the wisdom you have yet to understand it anyway. If you try to explain it to them, they either won’t listen or would think your off your rocker.

Enjoy your age and the wisdom you have gained along the way. You deserve being thought of as Superman by your children. Take care, God bless and Remember, we are all in this together.

Some people Have to say something / Others have Something to Say!!!

Does the title of this post mean anything to you? Are you talking just to hear yourself or are you using knowledge and wisdom to teach others lessons you have learned? What are their reactions to what you are telling them? Are they showing interest, anger, boredom or amusement to the words flowing so frequently from that hole in your face? I hope if it’s amusement, you are telling a good joke. These are some hard questions to ask one’s self. These are also questions that must be asked and answered if you want to improve who you are as well as what others think of you. What you share using your words can make or break the conversation you are engaging in. These words can and usually will help the other person or persons decide what your credibility is with the subject matter at hand. The person patiently listening to the conversation between the others and not interrupting usually looks like the most intelligent person in the room. Remember the saying, “two ears and one mouth”. In other words, we need to listen twice as much as we talk to ever become a wise person.

I am just now learning to take this advice to heart and the more I do, the more I believe this is truth. I myself, like many others, love to talk and find it difficult to listen to others without putting in my two cents. These are  terrible habits and ones that I am working through day by day, hour by hour and minute by minute. I challenge you to take part in this quest with me and see where it might take us together.

Umpire watches game

Here is a good test that shows how well we are listening. If you are arguing with the people on your television set, you want or need to hear your thoughts and are now missing the rest of the story through your own voice. Ladies, don’t tell me I’m crazy when you are involved in a conversation with the people you are watching like them rich housewives in whatever city they are in this season and Men, you are yelling at the refs during a sporting event all on the big box sitting on a stand in your living room! I am guilty of the second one. Guess what? It’s on television and they can’t hear you through the glass!

Let’s put this on the other person and away from us for a minute. If you are at the movies and someone is always talking during the movie, it’s hard to pay attention isn’t it? How about somebody asking what just happened and by the time you get through explaining what happened, you just missed the next scene and now you too are lost. I think this is why a very smart person invented the pause button for us to use at home but when watching on the big screen at the theater, you’re not able to pause. If you miss something, you either have to pay and watch it again or wait until it comes out on DVD so you can buy it and pause it at home. This of course is a win win for the movie industry but we just spent more than we originally anticipated. Our conversation can and will affect those around you as well as showing what kind of person you are.

Man reading a book

It’s easy to see a person’s point of view by reading their thoughts they have written down but to learn someone’s view on things in conversation can and is quite difficult for most. Everyone has their own thoughts and points of view on everything we deal with in our lives day to day. Parents all have their own thoughts on how parenting should be done. Once you have passed your driver’s exam, you will put your own methods into play while driving. These are just two examples of the millions that could be put forth for this discussion. What I’m trying to say is we all have our own unique way of doing things that suits us and makes us comfortable in what we are doing. We also have a hard time understanding how others get by without using these same techniques we have proven to work for us.

Here’s the thing, being comfortable is not always the best way of achieving any task, but getting outside our comfort zone puts us into what we feel may be a danger zone and we show this in our everyday conversations. Someone may bring up a topic of how driving should be done and if they wear a badge, we will listen. Talking with the policeman that has just pulled you over commands a certain amount of attention paid without the argument you would rather use. Start to tell the officer how wrong they are and you will most assuredly end up with a big fat ticket to pay. However, talking about driving with your buddies and everyone in your group is an expert and none of you drive the same way.

Alas, telling another parent what they are doing wrong, may get you a fat lip unless you are a specialist in the field of parenting and the parents have made an appointment to see you in your office. I do believe that specialist in the parenting field should be parents themselves. Becoming a parent is one thing that can’t be taught unless you have been a parent yourself ( I will always stand by this ).

Ask yourself if you are talking just to be part of the conversation or do I have a true insight that I have learned and feel it is important enough to speak up and show my knowledge and wisdom of the subject being discussed. Listening without interrupting is a talent that few of us have accomplished in our lives. I am not part of those special few but I’m working on it. Another part that is hard to learn is dealing with someone whom believes they know everything. (We all know one of these people, heck, you may be one of them ). Even if you are the expert in the subject, sometimes it’s better to be quiet and let the other person ramble on. Dealing with people like these can just turn into a huge argument if you show where they are wrong. ( You can always go home and laugh about what they said later! ) If you happen to be one of those that knows everything about everything just remember this quote; “It is better to be thought of a fool then to open your mouth and remove all doubt“. These people that you just showed all your knowledge to, are going home for a good laugh if you are full of dung.

Four men having a conversation

So when should we speak up and when should we keep our mouth shut, listen and maybe learn something? This is the quest I have been learning and inviting you to join in. Talking with your friends and just having a good time is great but if you are a baker at trade and know nothing about cars, telling an auto mechanic what to do if the transmission goes out…well, that’s just dumb! Same as the mechanic telling you ( the baker ) how to make a seven layer wedding cake. Where does your expertise lie? All of us have our special talents but none of us know everything! The ones that truly know the most, are those that can listen and not interrupt when spoken to. These special people have a grasp on many talents and not just one or maybe a couple as most of us do.

I am putting all of this in print, not to tell you your business but so maybe I can learn from some of you who have learned about these issues or are like me and are just now trying to learn this wisdom. As you read these words, ask yourself where you stand with this. If you can, help me and others learn the best way to know when to speak up and when to shut up, please share. This maybe a simple task for you but for most of us, it is a great mystery and learning curve that needs to be solved. I am all ears at this time and am really looking forward to your comments and advice. Thank you in advance and as always Remember, we are all in this together.

Dreams can tell us more than we think

     It is very true that dreams pick up on our thoughts throughout the day but what about solving problems that we don’t have the answers to? I am here to say exactly that. Our dreams can give us the answers we are looking for if we just learn to pay attention to them. Our brain is a wonderful tool especially while we are sleeping. With the body at rest, the brain has extra time to work on other things like the solutions we seek during the day.

    Our brain during sleep is much more useful than we give it credit. While the body rest, our brain can actually accomplish work that we don’t allow it during the day. We go to sleep thinking that’s it, sleep, but what if we were to give our brain a job to accomplish while we sleep? We can take a problem that we need the answer to and tell our brain to figure it out while we rest. The trick is to give it to our brain and then forget about it. Don’t make it a struggle or you will not be able to get the rest you need for the other parts of your body. This takes practice and time to set up but once mastered, you will find the answers easily and without the hard thought you have been using up until now.

Lady sleeping

     Have you ever woke up in the middle of the night and something you have been working on all of the sudden looked so simple? Then later when you get up for the day, you can’t remember what it was? You are not crazy, your brain just gave you the answer but you didn’t do a simple thing when you received the message. Keep a notebook and pencil beside your bed. When you are awaken, write down what you see while it is fresh and when it’s time to get up, read what you wrote and it will amaze you!

     Now the way to set up your brain to figure out problems at night is to write down the problem in question form and read it to yourself before bed. You are now giving your brain an assignment for the night. Once you have done this, forget about it and let it happen naturally. Some people listen to music as a way to fall asleep. This is great if you do it the correct way not taking focus away from the assignment you have given your brain.  What I mean is the type of music can help or hurt what you are trying to accomplish. Don’t go to bed listening to Rock & Roll or Country music.  I too love these kinds of music but it will take away focus from your brain and it won’t be able to complete its assignment for the night. Instead listening to classical music without words is a much better alternative.

Hands playing piano

     Classical music is a great relaxation type of music to listen to help us sleep. Make sure it is something soothing like piano and with no singing involved. I recommend Chopin if you want to listen to piano. I myself would never listen to this kind of music on a regular basis but for what we are trying to do, it works very well. Listening to rock will keep your heart rate up and keep you from the peaceful sleep we are seeking. Country music tells a story and will keep the brain working with the story it is being told.

Some people use relaxation apps that have things like running water, the ocean with seagulls or forest sounds. These are great for resting but I have found they also lead my brain into coming up with stories to fit the sounds being pumped in. For me if I listen to water trickling, it makes me dream of needing to fix the leak and also that I need to get up and use the restroom. If I listen to the ocean, I have wonderful dreams of being at the ocean but I need to dream of the answer to my problem not walking on the beach. If these work for you, great but I found classical music ( without words ) fits what I’m trying to accomplish during sleep.

     You may find it hard at first to get the answers you seek but this process will help you get on the right path of finding your answers. Once you have mastered this process, you will wonder why you haven’t tried this before and gotten better sleep without the worry. You will also be amazed how well it works.

     I hope some or all of you will try this and let me know how it’s going for you. You can contact me in various ways on my page as well as leaving comments to this post. Take care, get some good sleep, let your worries go and Remember, we are all in this together.

How do you use Free will?

If you have read my columns before, you have probably noticed how I bring up free will from time to time. I would like to dive into this concept a little deeper with hopes that others will grasp what I am talking about. There are many that cannot understand something that is really a simple concept. The biggest problem we have with “free will” is using it and understanding the ramifications and limits of what was meant when we were gifted it.

Everything we have or use has its limitations, this includes free will. I can choose of my own free will to hurt someone but I am now liable to the consequences of such an act. So there are limits to my free will. The old expression says “Nothing in life is free”. Pay very close attention because this is a very true quote and it includes free will as well.

Cell block B painted on block wall

The only thing you were truly given at birth is free will. (Some suggest life, spirit and soul. These three things were gifted at conception, not at birth). You have the right to be a good person or bad. You have the right to follow good or evil. You have the free will to pray to whom you wish. You may be persecuted for it or even killed but you still have the free will to do it. The United States is one country that allows you to follow what ever religion you wish by law however, if that means hurting someone else in the process, you will be jailed. You still have the free will to do it.

I am a Christian and I understand free will because it is explained to us in our teachings. There are many religions that don’t explain or except the concept of free will. That’s up to you and your church. The problem with alot of religions is they use free will to harm others that don’t follow their ways. As Christians, we don’t want to harm others. We do overstep our free will sometimes and have to except the consequences as well as anyone else. We believe that free will was a gift from God to humanity. This gift has been abused and caused all humanity to get ourselves into trouble more times then not.

God gave us free will because we are made in God’s image. He did not bind us. If we choose to follow him, then we have a set of rules to follow, one of these is the Ten Commandments. God also gave humanity the free will to follow whomever you wish to follow. The consequences of whichever way you choose will still be there but you have the free will to decide which consequences you will adhere to. I’m blessed to have a Father in Heaven [ my God ] whom is forgiving.

Man standing in rays of sunlight

So here it is in a nutshell. You have free will of spirit even though your body may be bound by things of this earth. These things may or may not be of your choosing. Free will may be free but consequences may cost you if it is not used with wisdom. Is free will free then? Is free will the only thing that is truly free? Do you follow spirit ( with free will ) or body with the world and it’s rules? Choose wisely and Remember, we are all in this together.

Memories are past / look to your future

    We all look back at what we have done but that is what it is, [ DONE ]!! What we have planned for the future is what matters most. Good or bad in the past is said and done. We must learn to put the past behind us. If we continue to live in the past, we can never see what future holds.

    I am reminded of this idea as we put this year behind us and look forward to the next. We should live life the same way so we can continue to grow. We have learned what we have learned already. Now we must look forward and continue learning. Remembering is one thing but don’t dwell on it. You must believe that your best days are yet to come so you can fulfill your life’s goals. If you have already met the goals that you have set for yourself, it’s time to set new ones.

    Life continues and we must continue with it. If we continue to live in the past, we will never accomplish what the future has in store  for us. Pictures show what has been but not what is about to come. So enjoy your pictures but don’t stand still with them. Continue to move forward in life and enjoy the journey. We only have one life to live on this earth. It would be a shame to miss out on all life has in store for us. Yesterday is over, today is now and tomorrow has yet to be. What are your plans for the future? Do you have a plan or are you just winging it and taking it as it comes? If you don’t have a plan, today is a good day to start one. Write down your plan so it won’t escape you. This is very important to help you stay on track and keep focus.

    We never know how long we have to create a legacy to leave behind for others to see and learn from. Don’t let time slip through your hourglass and disappear before you have accomplished everything you want. All too often people wait and their life is snuffed out before they can complete their life’s work. Don’t let this happen to you. Have a plan and push to the finish line. Don’t wait my friends. Life is short and the older we get, the faster time slips away. As we count down the end of 2021, you are granted another more prosperous year. Grab 2022 by the horns and hold on for the success you are about to receive.

    Make your New Years resolution to begin the rest of your life with a future full of success. May God bless you in your journey. Remember, we are all in this together.

Pay attention! Your inside voice is trying to help

Do you pay attention to that little voice inside you when it comes to making decisions? I have learned to do just that and it has saved me more times then I can count. Everyone has that little voice but most decide not to pay attention to it. “Am I just over thinking this situation or is my inner voice speaking up?” That is the question that usually comes to mind.

Some believe this to be unrealistic (even crazy) or that it is just an old wives tale. I can put to rest the second part with a simple question. When was that inner voice ever wrong? Once you decide to follow that voice, that’s when you have learned that voice speaks truth always and the wives tale no longer holds true. The first part is going to get a little tricky. Everyone has heard or seen a cartoon showing the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other. Living through life is a constant battle between good and evil but it is up to us to choose which shoulder to lean on. If it brings joy, it is good and if it brings destruction, then it’s bad. Simple enough to understand right? Well if it is so simple, then why are there so many bad people out there? We are born as clean spirits with pure souls who have yet to learn what evil is.

Don’t judge just yet, stay with me, I’m still talking about that inner voice. I’m just going about it in a round about way for your entertainment and to get you to really think about this. Your true inner voice will never tell you to do anything bad. You heard me right, it’s always a helpful tool not a destructive one. If you feel your inner voice is telling you to do something that is not of good value, then that is your brain leaning to the dark side and not your true inner self.

Girl dressed as angel and boy dressed as devil
Choose your side. No gray areas….

There are no shades of gray. You are either working on the good side or the bad. If you feel like you are working in the gray, then you are on the bad side of things and convincing yourself that it’s okay. Your inner voice doesn’t work on the bad side. It will never lead you astray. Once you come to this realization, then it is easier to hear that inner voice. The problem most people have is figuring out if that is their inner voice or if it is their imagination at work. A simple way to test this is with small attempts of following the voice you hear. If it is your inner voice, all things will go right while following it’s advice. If this is not your inner voice, there will be problems while following it.

This is a hard lesson to learn for most because the world has taught us to listen only with our physical ears and not pay attention to our spiritual ones. However, if you will listen within, you will learn more than you ever will with those funny looking things on the side of your head. Just a reminder to those that haven’t heard me say this before; you are a spirit, you have a soul and you are incased within a physical body. Your inner voice is your spirit guiding you in a physical world. This is what your maker gifted you upon being conceived. It is truly a gift and will work wonders for you, if you will only pay attention.

You must take baby steps until you know that voice is your true inner voice (spirit) speaking. Once you are able to distinguish what your inner voice sounds like, it will be unmistakable and you can follow it with the certainty that it will not lead you astray. There is much more to this that I’m not getting to right now but if you would like to hear more about this, I would be happy to talk to you about it. You can email me at tailfeathers32@protonmail.com (if you wish to be anonymous) or leave a reply to this post for others to read. I wish each and every one of you the best in finding this inner self. God Bless and Remember, we are all in this together.

A compassionate soul no more

    As society has grown more and more with the greatness of discoveries in technology, we as humans are also losing something that truly makes us human in the first place. Showing compassion for one another has taken a back seat and being self absorbed has taken the forefront. We are in self destruction mode and becoming more robot like and losing the humanity which makes us different from all other creatures.

    I believe showing compassion for one another puts us in God’s good graces. However, nowadays we are so into things like computers and cell phones that are able to think for us, we are rapidly becoming distant from one another. Of course, we can call our friends and talk to them but the words are just words with no feeling behind them. Someone may say they are having a hard time financially or that they have just had a loved one pass away and we say how sorry we are while looking at a post of a cat doing funny things online. There is a disconnect from our true compassion because of our inability to focus on what is being said since we can talk on the phone and surf the net at the same time.

Lady with her head in her hands sitting at desk with computer and cell phone

    People have started posting their life stories on social media of both good and bad instead of consulting their families or churches directly. Once posted, these things are glanced over and never taken seriously because of the amount of things like these put on so frequently. There are no surprises left in society. It’s all out there and payed very little attention to by others. Everyone has that sad story they want people to know about and the most compassion they receive is a click that shows a sad face. Another problem lies because of the competition of so many posts. You may want someone to truly feel your pain and give you the hug that you need but with posting on social media, it must be much worse than the other friend that is posting their problems to be noticed. We unintentionally make our problems look much worse then they are. Unfortunately, we start believing what we have written and it really does make our problems worse then they started out being.

    Communication is just a click away and means absolutely nothing anymore. How can we show our compassionate soul to someone through words on a website? We are becoming robots with feelings that are no longer active. Once a trip to visit grandma was a big deal for a child, now it has becomes nothing more than a video chat. No more running into open arms, just a smiling face on a computer screen is what the child has to look forward to. Social events are now done through conference calls. We are no longer showing our humanity. We are too busy and no longer need to schedule that event. Just pick up your smart phone and socialize while riding the exercise bike at home.

    Are we going to get back to talking with the loved ones in person? It’s looking like that is just a thing of the past. Even if we socialize in person, we must stay six feet away and wear mask today because of the pandemic that is going around. This virus is helping us become less socialized in person and helping our robot side take more of our humanity away. We must change our way of thinking. We need each other to survive and we need each other to keep our humanity. If within the first few sentences your grandchild asks, when seeing you in person, is “Can I use your computer?” then there is a problem showing itself directly to you.

    Compassion has also taken a back seat when we do see others in person that need our help. The family with the cardboard sign on the side of the road no longer pulls at our heart strings. We over look them because we are in a hurry and besides, why can’t they take care of themselves? It never crossed our minds that they just lost their home in a fire and because of the way society is today, there is no family to help them. The computer burned up in the fire and so they are cut off from family and friends.

Lady shows compassion for another female

    Compassion is a form of love that seems to be put on the wayside in today’s world. It is so sad but true and with this loss, we have come one step closer to losing one of the greatest things that make us who we are. Don’t let your compassion for others be taken away or you too will become the robot that society is trying to change us into. Show compassion for your family, friends and others that need your shoulder to lean on when times are tough. Don’t become the mind numb robots that only shows feeling by clicking the thumbs up symbol.

    Don’t let this new society take away your compassion. Don’t allow your children to grow up without this great human quality. Stand up against those who are leading us down a path of becoming mind numb robots. If you are one whom is trying to keep humanity on the right track, I want to personally thank you. If it seems the walls are closing in and you feel that you are fighting an unwinnable battle, think again and Remember, we are all in this together. 

Who is your secret self?

Everyone has a belief of who they want and try to be, others see who they believe we are but we also have our secret self. This secret self is very important because it focuses on who we truly are. This self will show the good, bad, wants, needs, thoughts, happiness and the hurt we have had through life experiences along with what we will do for the remainder of our lives. This secret self shows your true heart. When I say heart, that doesn’t mean the blood pump in your chest, it means the center of you.

Love, hate, belief, faith and worry all fall within your secret self. These can show up in our outwardly self (what others witness) but only shows what we want others to see. Within is where your true feelings lie. We never truly show exactly what we feel inside because it is impossible to explain in words for others to understand. This is why it is called our “secret self “.

Lady with blank look shows reflection in mirror

No other human on the face of this earth knows who you truly are except you. This is why someone who commits a terrible crime always has people that knew him/her and are completely surprised by the act. Now I use the terrible crime as an example. This also shows up for people that do great things. The difference between the two is, the one that does great things usually shows sparks of brilliance before the act. The person who does terrible crimes doesn’t show the world who they really are until they get caught. Yet, even after being caught, their secret self is still hiding things that others will never know.

So, who are you really? Are you someone who wishes to hurt or help others? Are you following your spirit and doing good or are you following the world and causing harm to yourself and others? This only you and your creator know for sure.

If your secret self is having a battle within you over good and evil, you must decide which to follow. There are no gray areas in this. Your secret self is either good or evil. The good news is, you can change who your secret self is if you are not happy with what you are. Once you decide to make this change, glimpses of it will leak out to your outer side but still will not fully show who you are. If you are running on the evil side and decide to switch to the good side, a glow or shine will show up on your outside. If in turn you go from good to evil, your shine will disappear and you will start showing a dull appearance.

Switching from one side to the other will show others more about your secret self just by appearance alone. Yet your secret self is still only known by your creator and you. It’s time to ask yourself, “Who am I and who do I want to be?” This my friends can only be decided by you. You can find help on both the good and evil sides but the ultimate choice is yours.

I know this article is hard to understand by most but if you will focus on what I am saying, you will learn alot about who you are and if you are happy with what you find. Think about it and don’t be afraid to ask questions or state what your views are. For the best results, read this article over until it takes hold of your mind and you understand who you are. We all have internal things working inside of ourselves that we have trouble understanding. Not to worry… Remember, we are all in this together.

Difference between beauty and ugly

It has happened to all of us at one time or another. For some this is a all too common occurrence. Someone or many have commented on a way that you look and said that it was wrong, ugly or that you must change to fit in.
   

We all are different in our makeup. Even if you have an identical twin, there are differences between you. There is no right or wrong way of looking. This is totally up to each individual to express who they are. No two people on this planet look or act exactly the same. What a boring world we would live in if we were all the same. There are certain criteria that we must follow within society to keep us from offending others but this too has gone too far. I understand that we must be clothed to walk down the street but we should be allowed to wear glasses without someone making fun of how we look.
   

The people that make fun of someone and hurt the others feelings because they can’t afford to wear the fancy clothes that you wear, should not be allowed to wear them either. Not only the affordability but showing self expression should be considered unique not ugly or weird. What have you accomplished by making someone feel bad about how they look other than make yourself look bad? Besides, I have seen some pretty crazy clothes on people that paid alot of money for stuff that I wouldn’t be caught dead in. If you think it looks good on you then by all means have at it but  a simple pair of jeans and a tee-shirt works fine for me, no matter how much money I may or may not have. Some people enjoy wearing alot of color, others enjoy wearing things that are not colorful at all. That’s what makes us human and we should be allowed to wear such things without being ridiculed for doing just that.
   

If someone is making fun of you because the way you dress, maybe it’s because they are jealous. Of course it maybe they are just mean and haven’t been taught to respect others. Either way, don’t let these people ruin your day, feel sorry that they can’t show some individuality of their own. Be proud of who you are and don’t be afraid to show it. God does not make junk! We are made to be different and the ones of us that can express this are far above those that can’t. Be who you are and be proud of it!
   

The people that make fun of someone because they consider them ugly are just stupid.  Who decides what is ugly and what is beauty? This too is all wrapped up by society and is another one of those stupid concepts. Depending which part of the world you are at the time will depend on what is and what is not considered beauty. This means that all of this beautiful and ugly talk is also completely decided by society and not what is true. This begs the question; are you going to be a follower and dress according to what society feels looks best or are you going to be a leader and show what you think looks best for you? Maybe what you are wearing today is the trend for tomorrow. Don’t change who you are unless you want to make that change. Don’t try to be someone else, this is a grave mistake and will get you nowhere fast. You set your trend and let others catch up if they can. You may even find someone trying to look like you. All in all it is your choice and if you are proud of who you are, then nothing else really matters anyway.
   

What about people that have handicaps? Some of these people may be born with them and others may have them thrust upon them through life. Are you one of those that make fun of these people because they look different than you? If you are then you are beyond stupid! These people are who they are and are loved just as much, if not more by God. Have you ever thought of how special these people are? Maybe they are who we were designed to be and what we call “normal” is actually the ones that have the afflictions? Anyway you want to look at it, if you are making fun of them and making them feel bad, You are the problem not the solution. Show love for these people so they can show love for you.
   

In conclusion, I just want you to understand that we all share this planet together. We are all different in our own unique ways and it is a wonderful thing to have. Be thankful that we are different and have the ability to shine the way we want to shine and not according to what others may think. Next time you feel that you must say something to someone about the way they dress or carry themselves, may I suggest that you compliment them instead of making fun of them. Love begets love and you never know what kind of blessings you may receive for this simple gesture.
   

Take care, love one another and Remember, we are all in this together.

Words are powerful

Think of your words as a drop of water and the world around you as a lake. One single drop will cause ripples for a long way. Many drops can cause a disturbance throughout the lake. The power of our words is absolutely amazing. Our actions also speak loudly but are secondary to our words. There is only positive or negative thought. There are no gray areas to cling to. Which side of the line do you want to work with, positive or negative? One will bring you and others joy. The other will keep others away from you and joy will be but a dream.

Drop of water hitting a puddle of water

You may have heard a child say “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me.” This is a nice thought but so untrue. You can do more damage with your words then you could ever do with sticks and stones! Our words can hurt ourselves as well as others because our words show who we are and what we want. We may also help others as well as ourselves with the proper words. Words are as magnets, held one way and the magnets attract, the other way and they repel. We need to take charge of our words. The first part of this process is to change our mindset. A negative person will always show their anger, grief, and disappointment with their words. On the other hand, a positive person will show joy, accomplishment and leadership with their words.

Why is it that a negative person can never accomplish anything worthwhile and are jealous of the positive person? A positive person has the world by the throat and can accomplish anything they set their minds to. This all starts with a mindset and is shown with the words that are used daily. If you want to be happy and a successful person, you need to learn what it takes. The first step is learning how to express yourself in a positive way and your words are key for this to work.

Stacks of scrabble pieces that spell out "words"

Here is an example of what I am talking about. If you use alot of curse words, (these words are a very negative type of speech) you will feel dragged down, angry and unsure of yourself. If you use positive words, (these are upbeat words) even when things are troublesome, you will feel a power of accomplishment and the secrets of how to fix said troubles with ease.

The second part to this is your actions.  Do you carry yourself in a positive way or are you slumping around looking like the definition of despair? Your body actions tell alot about you. Words and actions work together. It is extremely hard to speak positive and slump around at the same time. It is also very difficult to speak negative and walk with a positive stance. Pay attention to how your body automatically shows whether you are using positive or negative words. It will enlighten you, I promise.

Open Bible

So how do we change the way we speak and make sure we are on the positive side? Firstly, you must think before you speak. There’s a saying that goes, “It is better to be thought of as a fool then to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt”. One translation of this is, if you can’t say something positive, keep quiet. Another translation is, don’t speak of things and other people you know nothing about. Either way, this shows positive and negative thought. This has been a problem that I have fought for many years but if you can put your mind to it, it is very possible and probable you will succeed. We also need something to believe in that helps us stay positive. Most of the time this falls under religious beliefs.  If you are following a religion that preaches a positive message about the one you follow, then this is a very good thing to grasp upon. It will help when you have that time where nothing seems to be going right. I believe I have this with being a Christian. You must answer your own questions about your faith.

I wish the best for you and hope you find this useful. Stay positive, hold on to your beliefs and dreams. Remember, we are all in this together.

One nightmare at a time please

Growing up and learning from our elders is a hard thing to do. I was not unlike other teenagers. I had a hard time listening to others teaching me how to do things the smart way and not the hard way. My mother was and is still a great inspiration and influence in my life but when I was a teen, she couldn’t teach me anything because I wouldn’t listen. Later in life, the lessons she tried to teach me finally took hold and I was able to use the wisdom she tried to pound into my head earlier in life.

Teenage boy
Teenagers are hard to teach

One of the great teachings that this wise woman was always trying to get into my head was how to use common sense when doing anything. “Don’t look at the whole project at once, take it one step at a time”, she would say. The best example I can come up with for this was cleaning my room and mowing the lawn. My room was like any other teenager’s room. It was usually a big mess. When she would tell me to clean it up, my first thought was “There goes my weekend!” My mom would remind me of how she always taught me to clean my room, even when I was much younger. I would hear her voice in the back of my head, “Don’t look at the whole thing, just start with one corner and clean that first.”

This process always worked even though I would never give her credit for it. I wouldn’t look at the whole room, instead I would put my focus solely on one corner. After that corner was clean, I would simply start on the next corner. It was amazing how well this worked out for me and within an hour, my room would be spotless. If I were to focus on the whole room, it would take much longer because of being overwhelmed by all the things that needed to be put back in place.  I would be running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off.

This simple rule continued to help me in many things throughout my life. One saying says get the whole picture but using pieces instead, works better for me. Looking at the whole picture not only overwhelms me but creates a confusion that is hard to explain.

One of the places in Missouri that I grew up in was what I considered my childhood home. We lived in many different houses but this was the one that held and still holds my heart. It was in the countryside with a dirt road leading to it. The house my dad and mom had built was in a field that was once an alfalfa pasture sitting between to hillsides. They had decided to have the house built far off the dirt road, which gave us a huge front yard. We had ten acres and the front yard consisted of two of those acres. Guess who had to mow those two acres and the half acre in the back of the house which met up with the rest of the land used as a pasture for our animals? If you guessed me, you hit the nail on the head.

We did have a old riding lawn mower to mow this but it was still a hard job to accomplish. Starting early in the morning, it would take until nightfall to mow this hunk of land if I didn’t take too many breaks that is. This land was so fertil that this project would have to be done every other week except for winter when the snow would give me a break. Of course shoveling the driveway wasn’t fun either. The only way I could accomplish this great mowing job was to use my mom’s idea and take it one section at a time. If I were to look at the whole job all at once, I would’ve probably lost my mind. However, looking at one section at a time made the job alot easier. During the mowing, I could also look at what I had already done and see that I was making progress. The few times I tried to mow the whole thing in one shot seemed like I wasn’t getting anywhere fast. Even though the same amount of grass was being chopped, the difference in how I seen it was amazing.

I continued through life using this simple method and it has helped me get though many things in my life. No matter how big of a project I came upon, I could break it down and make it a simple thing to do. Even when crazy things happened, like a main water line breaking, I didn’t go crazy over the nightmare I was facing. I just broke it down to steps that needed to be taken and then took it one step at a time.

There is a saying that many of you may have heard before. It’s called  the ‘K.I.S.S’ method. This is short for “Keep it simple stupid”. Using the break down method my mom taught me or as I like to call it “One nightmare at a time”,  seems to work well with the Kiss method. Any way you look at it, these two work hand in hand. They are both very good lessons to learn and will help you get through tough times as they have with me.

I remember going to boot camp with the Navy and keeping these terms in my mind. They helped me tremendously when it came to doing all that was required from me to make it without going crazy when so much was expected and it had to be exactly right to keep the Company Commander off my back. Even though I had a very smart mouth that caused me to do more push-ups then anybody else, when it came to my bunk and locker, mine was always perfect during inspections.

USS Charleston LKA 113
The ship I was stationed on

Once I graduated from boot camp and was stationed on my ship “USS Charleston LKA 113” I continued to use the lesson I had learned about looking at one piece of a job or problem at a time. Being that I was a Damage Control man on the ship and being trained in many different types of rescue, fire fighting, flood control and other such things, this simple lesson served me well. Even the times that we had actual damage happening, not just training for it, this lesson loomed large in the back of my mind just waiting for its grand appearance once again. It is true that training for such things to happen does help a great deal when the time comes. I just never knew how the training for such disasters actually was started back in my youth long before the dream of being a sailor had even crossed my mind. For those I served with, thank you for your service and thank you for all your help during  the “Fork truck rodeo”. To others that were not there during this event, you missed one heck of a ride! I have said before that I would write about that event but the words are not there as of yet. Just to give you a taste of what that event was, it consisted of fire, flooding and loose fork trucks on board our ship during a hurricane all at the same time.

Once leaving the service, I became a over the road truck driver and seen things that screen writers for the movies would have a hard time coming up with. If they did write some of these things down, big movie stars would swear the public would never believe it unless it was written into a science fiction movie that is. To watch fifteen to twenty cars spinning out of control outside of Dallas Texas because someone lost a ladder out of the back of their pickup was absolutely crazy and terrifying, yet I drove through the middle of all them and watched the ladder stand on end next to me until I got passed it, then it went to bouncing around again. The only damage my rig received was a fine line towards the top part of my trailer from where the ladder barely touched it. The damage was almost like someone had taken a #2 pencil and drawn a perfect  line down the side. It was so light that it would wipe off with a damp rag. Later that evening I seen a newscast of the big pileup of cars and big trucks alike this single ladder had caused. Once again, my training came back and I dodged one car at a time. Of course God was helping me steer at the time.

240 ton haul truck
240 ton haul truck

A few jobs in between and then my mining job began. Numerous times I thought for sure I would have a major accident driving a large haul truck out of control down a mud slide of a ramp. Time and time again my Mom’s voice would remind me in the back of my mind, “Remember son, one step at a time.” Time moves on but wisdom always wins out. No matter the situation you find yourself in, deal with the now and worry about later when it gets here. Don’t try to start a jigsaw puzzle with the last piece, work your way through the process and the final piece will fit in. Seeing the whole picture doesn’t count if you can’t see it one piece at a time. Thank you mom for sharing your wisdom with me and even when you thought I wasn’t listening, your words were building a picture in my mind. You have saved me from many failures by sharing your wisdom with me.

Pieces of jigsaw puzzle
Remember: one piece at a time

I hope reading this has meant as much to you as writing it has meant to me. God bless and as always; Remember, we are all in this together.

I want to dedicate this post to my Mom. I can’t thank you enough Mom for teaching me and sharing your wisdom with me. I know God will have a mansion waiting for you when you go to your Heavenly home.

Picture of my Mom
My Mom

Pain is inevitable, misery is an option

I believe the title to this post says it all in a short and sweet manner. I will explain further what this means.

Lady rubbing her shoulder because of pain

When we are put on this earth, we live by alot of the earth’s rules. One of these rules is we will experience pain in life while we are here. This pain will come in different forms and affect us in different ways. There will be the physical pain which can be as simple as a thorn in a finger or can be as major as losing a leg. Either way, the pain will exist.

We can experience pain mentally from being bullied or a broken heart from losing that person that you love so much. These are examples of the first part of the title. The second part is the most important.

When we experience these so called pains in our lives, how do we react afterwards? Sure stepping on that Lego hurts but did you allow it to destroy the rest of your day? Maybe within a few minutes that pain goes away and you forget it ever happened.

Lady crying on her bed because of breakup

The mental pain is usually the worst kind of pain. Did the love of your life find someone new? Did that bully do something so bad that you are walking in fear? How did you react after these pains? Are you going to allow them to control the rest of your life?

Are you going to allow any kind of pain to turn into misery for you? This is when pain is at its worst but you can decide how far you will allow pain to go. Don’t allow these pains to turn into making you miserable. When it seems like all is falling out of control and you are allowing these pains to turn into misery, just think, there is someone that is going though the same thing as you. There are also others going through worse situations then you are at this point. The difference is how we pick ourselves up, put the pieces together and continue on. This is where the second part of the title falls.

The winners in this are the ones that make up their minds not to allow these pains to manifest themselves into misery. The ones that allow misery to take over are the losers. Do you want to be on the winning or losing side? This is completely up to you.

We all go through pain, both physically and mentally. You are not alone! Sometime, somewhere, there is or has been someone who has had the pain you are experiencing. Some will or have allowed misery to take over, others have refused to let misery in and have made it through with their head held high and much wiser for the experience. Don’t allow misery into your life, it’s a cancer you don’t need and it is up to you to stop it before it takes hold.

Lady's silhouette showing joy

As we learn from our mistakes, we can also learn from our pain. Keep misery out of your life and stay on the positive side of things. Take care and Remember, we are all in this together.

Lessons parents learn

Everyone has that moment when they realize that their value system is different from their parents. This is the point when we have entered that grown up phase of our lives. For some it happens in their twenties, for others, it can happen later in life. There are others that may never see the grown up phase enter their lives.

Toddler looking up

Our parents teach us the best that they know how at the time. All parents make mistakes and they along with the child will learn from those experiences. As we enter the grown up phase and have children of our own, we take what we have learned from our parents and use what we consider to be the best with the knowledge we have at the time. We in turn, will make mistakes that we and our children will learn from. And so the process continues down to our grandchildren and so on.

Nobody has the perfect solution to raising a child. You may believe you do but there will be things that happen that will surpass your knowledge and change the way you see parenting. This will be the time when you discover that you don’t know everything about being a parent and you will gain a knowledge of why all parents make mistakes.

Every young couple that has their first child will think they have everything under control. They will believe that they will be able to raise their child in a better way then their parents raised them. This will last for awhile until the surprise something comes along. Just like when you were a teenager and truly believed that you knew everything, one day you will find out that you actually know very little. This is when you can consider yourself as a grownup.

Young girl hugs her grandfather

I am now a grandfather to five grandchildren and I am watching as my children learn that being a parent is the hardest job in the world. One day you believe that you are the perfect parent, just to find out how little you really know.

Don’t worry and knock yourself over the head when this happens. Once you become a grandparent, you will be able to sit back and watch your children learn the same lesson. All parents go through this and it’s not easy to do but it is very rewarding. Once you watch your children with their children using alot of your techniques that you used, then changing somethings they feel you did wrong, just to find out they just created a different set of problems.

Mother and father holding their child between them

To all parents that will pay attention, you will make mistakes but do what you think is right at the time and you will be fine. Parenting is a mathematical equation without a solution. Being a parent is the hardest job you will ever do but it also has the greatest rewards.

Take care all my parenting readers and Remember, we are all in this together.

Age shows your past

Age can be a state of mind but it also shows on the body. There are people that age quicker than others. Some of this is due to genetics but most of it can and will show up because of the way we treat the body we are incased in. People that abuse drugs and alcohol are classic cases of showing age at a higher rate than normal. We are blessed with this container and yet we continue to destroy it. We are only going to have these bodies for a few short years so why do we continue to destroy them?

Elderly man sitting on couch with bottles of alcohol in front of him

Think of your body as a rental. When your time comes, what kind of shape will your body be in when it is returned to your maker? I myself have abused my body in ways that would make me lose my deposit if I had to return it today. The one thing that is good about our bodies is, for the most part, it can heal itself given enough time. Time though is relative and sometimes we don’t have enough for it to repair the damage that we have done.

So what are we to do? Your body is expected to take some wear and tear along the way. We are responsible to keep the wear and tear to a minimum. Our deposits will be given back as long as we keep up our end and not let our bodies fall completely apart.

Elderly man thinking

Now you know as well as I that we neither rented or put down a deposit for the bodies we are living in. But if we think along these lines of renting, maybe we won’t do quite the damage to them. Feeling good is a great feeling but it takes practice and determination to achieve. Maybe thinking before eating one more donut or drinking one more beer today will make you stop and think before consuming them in the future. Maybe mixing a bunch of chemicals together to put into our bodies for that quick high will no longer feel necessary. Think before you consume.

I am very guilty of many things in my life that has hurt this body of mine but I’m trying to do better. I’m not trying to tell you that what you are doing is wrong. I’m sharing with you in hopes that my downfalls will not fall upon you and others. If it doesn’t feel right before you do it, it’s probably not right.

Keep in mind that if you are one of the few that live to be a hundred, wouldn’t it be nice to have a body that works as though it is in its fifties? It all starts today. We can’t fix yesterday but we can change for tomorrow.

Elderly lady that has her hands up

Age in alot of ways is a state of mind. Let’s keep our bodies running along the same lines and live with that good feeling and not that broken down old creaking body that so many of us live with. We can’t help our genetics but we can adjust our abuse.

May the Lord bless you and keep you well. Remember, we are all in this together.

Where did respect go?

I get a little confused when people don’t except when someone shows them respect. I was raised to show my elders respect, to open doors for women and to answer with sir or ma’am at the end of a sentence.

There have been many times that I have used sir while talking to a man, just to be told “Don’t call me sir. I work for a living.” Now most of the time I am addressing a veteran when this happens. I do understand why they say this and other veterans will as well but they are taking my calling them sir in the wrong way. When I call you sir, it is because I am showing you respect and not trying to put you down.

Man holding door open

There have also been times when I have held the door for a lady and have been told that I was in the wrong by the same lady. Once this lady has told me this, she has turned from a lady to just a female with a bad attitude. I understand women’s lib and I respect it as well but let me tell you what I believe. I think a woman deserves the same pay and rights as any man. She also deserves to be respected as a woman by any man. When a woman takes away this respect, she becomes like any other man and loses the extra respect she should expect and except. Ladies, next time a man opens a door for you, you have just been put on a higher level than a man and this has nothing to do with equal rights. Women deserve to be put on a pedestal. Once you have put yourself on the same level as a man, you have just kicked your pedestal out from under you. You are now on the same level…on the ground trying to hold these pedestals up. Is that what you really want?

Respect is something that most have gotten away from in this day and age. It is really sad to see this happening. Children are no longer taught respect in most families and they in turn will not teach this to their children. I am proud to say that most of us “country folks” are still teaching our children respect and will continue to do so. I believe that respect is one of the most valuable lessons we can learn and teach our children.

Man shaking lady's hand

If I use the term of sir or ma’am, open a door for you ladies or shake a woman’s hand different then a man’s and you don’t like it, then you don’t want, desire or deserve respect. I’m not sure what you want but, I will continue what I have learned. If you don’t want respect and I know it by meeting you before, I will adhere to your wishes and let the door smack you in the face. I don’t understand it but if that’s what you want, you got it.

This all comes down to what kind of society we want to live in. Would you rather someone call you sir / ma’am or call you something that suggests how you look or are acting at the time? Maybe use a few choice curse words on you is what you desire? I, my friends, don’t want to live in a society that has a teenager call me a curse word and push me out of the way. I would rather have this same teenager call me sir and ask if I need help putting my groceries in my car.

Well, it’s all up to you. We all have to decide what kind of society / world we want to live in. Think about it and Remember, we are all in this together.

Scars bring back memories

I can recall many things from my past adventures from the scars and creaks of my body. Some were great times, that over time have left a lasting impression. Some are marks of how dumb and maybe even crazy I was in my youth. We all have our scars both mentally and physically that we live with and remind us of our past.

I look at the scar on my right forearm and it tells the story of one such time. This was caused by not only my teenage super genius but also a double barrel wood stove. Alas, the wood stove proved to be as intelligent, if not more so, then I was with all my brain power at work.

Wooden fence In the snow

It was a very cold winter’s day with snow and some ice packed ground as far as the eye could see. This was a typical winter’s day for Missouri. I wanted to get as much heat out of that stove that was possible. As a teenager and indestructible as I thought I was, the thought never crossed my mind of the dangers I was putting myself, my dad’s garage/mechanic’s business in. With the proper dried wood inserted, that stove would put out enough heat for three times the size of the shop. I wanted to get the stove going quickly because it was as cold inside as it was out. This would become a difficult task since I had been lazy the last few days, and not brought in the wood from the outside to dry out. I now found myself with wet wood to burn.

My teenage genius kicked in and I knew what to do. Being that this was an auto shop, motor oil was readily available! Instead of putting in some smaller kindling and then working my way up to larger sticks of wood, I  thought better of taking a little extra time and muscle to split the bigger logs. I stuffed that bottom barrel as full as I could with the whole logs. I also took smaller sticks and filled in alot of the cracks between the logs. Not quite sure why I did this last part with the small sticks but it felt right at the time. I left just as much room as I needed at the top to get my hand and a quart of motor oil above the wood and poured it evenly all over the wood. I took some news paper and stuffed it in, then lit the newspaper with a lighter.

Won’t be long now I thought. The newspaper quickly burned up but, the wood did not. Well crap, what do I do now? Putting my super teenage brain back to work, it came to me. We had a parts washing station that used diesel fuel and solvent to clean engine parts with. Ahh, a cup of this should do the trick! A can that used to contain green beans in it was just what the doctor ordered. I filled up the can and once again reached in the barrel above the wood and poured the contents evenly ( it never crossed my mind that a small ember could ignite, from where I had lit the newspaper earlier and my whole arm would be there for the burning inside the stove! ). This, thank the Lord above did not happen. Once again, I stuffed some newspaper in and lit my masterpiece. The newspaper burned quickly and went out. Now my friends, I’m thinking, maybe I’m not quite as bright as I thought I was. No, that can’t be true, I am a teenager, the smartest person on the face of the planet! I just need a new plan, is all.

Double barrel wood stove

I sat down across from the opening of this stupid stove and once again put my genius to work. I have to come up with a solution and have the wood stove lit and shop getting warm before my dad got up and reminded me how lazy I had been for not bringing in wood the last few days to dry out. Geez, parents can be such a pain! They think they are so smart just cause they are old. That’s exactly what I was thinking at the time. Not too long after that, my thoughts would change dramatically.

I got up and walked around the shop, letting my great teenage brain do its work. My dad had told me diesel fuel was safer than gasoline because it didn’t have the explosive properties like gasoline. Actually he said the fumes of gasoline are what are so explosive but, I only remembered what I wanted to, don’t want to give the old man too much credit. So what I need is something that has that quick heat rate to get my conglomeration started!

Looking around, I couldn’t seem to find that gas can but, here’s a can of WD-40 and some paint remover. Still looking for the gasoline, I walk by the stove and sprayed some of that stuff in. Couldn’t hurt I thought. Meanwhile, all of the stuff I have put on my wood is soaking in and creating a great time bomb but I didn’t know that then, even though I was the smartest person on the planet at the time.

Low and behold, there’s that can of gas! Since I was so smart, I knew not to use to much. I don’t want to lose my eyebrows today. Keeping in this frame of mind, I got that green beans can again. How much should I use? I would use half a can but, the wood is wet, better use a whole can to be safe.

Once again I reached my hand into to stove and poured the contents in, not knowing that this is even more dangerous than before, if the smallest ember were to be present. With the gasoline added, I know that this will burn and I won’t need paper to start it. Once again my brain went to work and I decided not to put the lighter to it with the door of the stove open. I knew there would be a quick flash and as I said, I don’t want to lose any eyebrows! I closed the door and opened up the small vent in the door  to be able to lite it from. I have now created even a bigger bomb because of the closure of the door!

Lit match

I made sure the flu was all the way opened on the chimney pipe between the top barrel and the ceiling. I got a long stick, lit it and slowly led it to the small opening in the door. Baaboom!!! Not only did it ignite but it shook the whole building and moved the stove six inches to the right. I wish I could have seen the explosion from the chimney stack out of the top of the roof. I bet flames shot ten feet in the air! The heat was almost unbearable but the worst was yet to materialize.

As the heat began to build, there was a red glow coming from the top barrel and creeping on up the chimney pipe. I watched in awe and fear as my superior genius showed its effects. Oh Lord, let this thing calm down before my dad gets here. I will never hear the end of this if it doesn’t! As the super heat grew farther up the pipe, the tar that was put around the pipe on the steal roof was starting to liquefy. How do I know this? Simple deduction since the tar that was meant to keep rain out of the building, was now raining down the pipe!

Brain flying into trash can

I have to slow this down somehow. My thoughts were racing and so was I. Running around like a crazed maniac, yelling and screaming like a little girl. How do I cool this thing off? I grabbed some welders gloves and reached down and opened the door on the bottom barrel. What did this do to help? Well nothing except letting some pressure escape and filling the shop with black smoke. Running around some more and wondering where was my super genius brain now. My brain had gone on vacation and left me on my own. This was a good and bad thing. Even though my teenage brain had shut down and allowed full spread panic to set in, at least it wouldn’t come up with anymore stupid ideas. I can come up with just as much damaging ideas without the use of my brain anyway.

Showing how the teenager thinks, I wasn’t panicking because of the possible life and death situation I had put myself in. I was panicking because of what my dad would say, think, do or whatever that crazy old man might have in store for me. I knew I had to do something and quickly but what? Looking back, I could’ve just let it calm itself down. It was contained, no fire had come out of the stove and it would’ve slowed down given enough time. But, Dad could be here anytime now. Come on Billy, think!

Cartoon showing a human head open with brain peaking out

I guess my brain had decided to return which was not a good thing for me. I slowed down a little caught my breath, between coughs of smoke that was filling my lungs, and seen a steal bucket of water, which we used in case of burns or whatnot, sitting in the corner of the building. I ran over and grabbed it. I decided I didn’t want to throw it in the opening of the stove because, this might cause the smoke and burning wood to come out towards me. I decided to throw the water on the side of the barrel. This was one of the greatest mistakes I have ever made in my life!

As the water from my bucket hit this glowing red hot stove, it turned immediately to super heated steam that blasted me in the face which made me fall down. I was fortunate not to get major burns from this blast. I truly believe, by this time, God was feeling sorry for me and my stupidity. He would however allow me to take something away from this disaster to remind me for the rest of my life.

Something else happened when that water hit. It created my final bomb like effect. From cool meeting hot, an explosion erupted threw the stove and up the pipe with a huge bang, sounding like a cannon being shot, right there in the shop! With the tar melting and rolling down the chimney pipe, the thunderous shake from this final explosion was enough to once again move the stove farther out of place and send showers of tar flying this way and that. A chunk of this tar, approximately six inches in length an about one inch wide, landed on my right forearm continuing to burn and now adding my flesh to the substance that it could devour in its path.

Picture of scar on my forearm

Lying on the concrete floor now with my ears ringing from the blast, choking from the smoke in my lungs and cringing in pain from the hot tar on my arm, I came to the conclusion that I was no longer the smartest person on the planet. Actually I could think of plant life that had more intelligence then me.

My dad showed up shortly after this  picked me up, carrying me outside, where he dumped me on the ground. He quickly checked me over and then went and opened up the big doors on the shop to let the smoke clear out. He checked to make sure the stove was cooling down and that there was nothing flammable close to it. Returning to me, he asked what happened. I explained what I could and showed him my arm. He said, “Bet that hurts, huh?” “Yes sir.” I said choking down the pain. “I guess from now on you will bring the wood in to dry like I told you too.” I groaned, waiting for the lecture, “Yes sir,” That was it, no lecture. He told me to go put some ice on my burn and get my a$$ back here and clean up my mess.

Nowadays, I would have probably been going to the emergency room but, back then, it just wasn’t necessary unless there was a broken bone, a lot of blood or alot more flesh burning, especially with a father that had been a Marine in the Vietnam War. It may not have been considered the smartest thing, according to today’s standards but, it did make me alot tougher then today’s teens.

The burning lasted for days and it was months before all of the tar disappeared from my arm. This left me with a scar and a memory of times gone by.

I have many stories of my youth and I’m sure you do as well. Slowly but surely, I will post these stories and the lessons learned from them. We make many mistakes growing up and depending how we react to each of these situations, will depend how much of a well rounded person we grow up to be. I hope you have enjoyed a small look into my past and will share this post with your teenagers. Maybe, just maybe, they will learn something from it.

I always welcome your thoughts and you are more then welcome to share my post. Take care, God bless and Remember, we are all in this together.

Sounds of nature remind me, I’m still alive

I realize that is a strange title to start off with, but, there is a lot of truth to it. I wake up every day not knowing if this is my last day, minute or even second to be amongst the living of our fair earth. This doesn’t bother me, it just makes me wonder if I have done all that I’m supposed to do before the time comes for me to move on. I listen to nature because it relaxes me and lets me know, for that amount of time, that I am alive and still have some time left to accomplish what I need to.

Lady walking on a log in the forest

The trees are a great source of sounds. There is the rustle of the leaves, the creak of a branch about to give way, and the peace that comes from listening to small animals feet along the branches. Other sounds are just as important in nature but, the trees seems to be the foundation of what I feel and understand. This may be strange to some people, I guess because, a tree just stands there in its majestic awesomeness. To me, they are so much more than just sticks coming from the ground. They have great meaning to me and most other country folks as well. Other sources of nature seem to always lead me back to the trees.

Creatures of all the wooded land have their own sounds that most people miss when they are in the countryside. Of course, the birds are always noticed but, the different songs of the birds are seldom distinguish one from the other. Of all the different birds that I have heard sing, the “whip-poor-will” has the most beautiful sound to my ears. If you have never heard of this bird, don’t feel bad, most people haven’t. Take a few minutes and look this bird up. Maybe you can find some audio to hear his song. You won’t be disappointed.

Squirrel on a oak tree

When I notice other creatures of the forest, the playful squirrels sound amazing in the loose leaves of the forest floor. Running this way and that, storing the nuts and seeds for the long winter ahead. If you take time, sit down and lean against a mighty oak tree, these little furry creatures can bring you hours of enjoyment.

The soft crunch of the frozen leaves in the winter time of the deer slowly making their way to the water hole is a sound like none other. If you are lucky enough to get a glimpse of them in the wild, your heart will speed up tenfold! They are a wondrous sight to see.

Deer walking in the snow

No forest would be true without the running of a spring, creek or river cutting through the soil and rocks. The trickling of the water as it makes its way downhill is awesome. And where the water starts rushing to its destination will have you in awe. A waterfall is an added bonus, not only of the site but, the sound will capture your spirit and allow you to wonder off into a daydream like none other. Amazing how water like that will capture your full attention, but, water from the faucet in your home is just an everyday sound.

River running through the woods

I have mentioned a few of the many sounds I enjoy, and yes they do remind me I am alive and still here. So many people miss what nature has to offer, and that is a true shame. I live in the country, and it would be very hard for me to live in the city, however if I were in the city, I would still find the sounds of nature. It may be more difficult there but, I know there would be a park somewhere close that I could get back to the nature I so love.

I hope you have enjoyed reading my little journey through nature. I welcome your feedback and feel free to share this with your friends and neighbors. Take care, God bless and as always remember, we are all in this together.

Speck on a marble in a universe

Do you feel like you are more important than others around you? Are you bigger then life itself? Time to come off your high horse and stare at the stars.

I’m not trying to make you feel insignificant or trying to tell you not to do your best in everything. I just want you to take a few moments and realize what is really out there and what your place truly is. I find that people can become so into themselves that they can’t see how small of a footprint they are making in life. If you believe that a king, president or ruler of any kind is better than the man or woman that spends their time picking up roadkill for a living, you are sadly mistaken.

Baby sleeping in basket

Everyone of us arrived in this world in basically the same way. Some people grew up to strive for greatness, some born into money and others that are filling in the gaps. What I’m trying to get at is, we are all as important as the other person. People in higher ranks of life have more responsibility but, that does not in anyway make them better then anyone else. I myself will talk to you the same and show you the same respect, regardless of wether you are President of the United States or the janitor at the local high school. We are all just as important as the next guy.

The reason I brought up how insignificant we really are is not to suggest anything bad. This is to put into perspective how small we truly are. Have you ever taken the time to stare at the stars? When we look into the vastness of space, we realize how much bigger things are then our little home that we call Earth. Heck, we could put one million of our earth’s into the space our sun occupies. Just imagine how much time has gone by from any single star to the point when we see it. There is alot more out there than our tiny planet.

Stars in the sky from country setting

Here we are in all our glory and yet, we are nothing when it comes to everything that is in the universe. We think of ourselves as bigger than life but in actuality, we are but specks in a universe. Why are we so great? What makes us so special? Read on and maybe you will understand what I have finally learned after years of thought in my own little world.

We are special because we are chosen to be what no other creature can claim. We are a reflection of the one whom created all the stars, planets and vastness of space that we are such a small part of. We are but a speck riding on a marble tumbling around in one of many universes and yet, we are truly spectacular. We hold the glory of the one whom created it all.

This my friends brings up a thought of how crazy it is for us to fight each other over things that really don’t matter. Things like rich versus poor or black versus white. How stupid can we be? Let’s see if we can get some sort of example of the way things should be. How about ants? These small creatures work together to create massive empires in their small world. Why can’t we come together and build our empire in our small world? We fight each other and destroy instead of building what could be the greatest empire we could ever conceive.

Looking at the earth from the moon

I believe we were put on this earth to perform a service for the one whom created us. I believe this is not to destroy but, rather save and build to the greatness that we have the ability to achieve. This means we must work together and love one another, not to hate and destroy each other. We have the ability to do anything we desire as long as we work together like the ants do.

Next time you feel that you are better then your fellow human, look up in the sky and remember that we are but a very small part of the vastness that is. We must work together because we do hold a great responsibility and the only way to keep it is to bind together. We all have our part to play and it won’t work without working together.

Man starring at the stars from a lookout

Will you join with me, not as my superior or as my subordinate but, as my equal to achieve greatness? Are you ready to show our creator what we can do? We all have our special gifts to apply to the empire. If we can learn to share our gifts instead of keeping them to ourselves, we can create what will make our creator proud.

Mankind, such a small creature with such big ego’s. If we are to be as great as we think we are, we better start thinking more like the ants. So so small but, with the greatness of giants within us. It is true that we are a very small part of the massive amount of what is. Yet, we hold the true heart of our creator. We are a great part of the universes, small as we are, we should learn to live together with humbleness and set aside our egos. Will we show the creator what a great creature he has created on this our tiny planet or will he wander where he could’ve done a better job?

I come to you with love and a humble heart to ask that we come together the way we were meant to be. Our world is huge to us as a small patch of land is to the ants. Just remember, we are smaller than the ants when we see what is truly out there. Spend some time looking at the stars and be proud that we are the chosen planet. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

What impression will you leave behind?

If you were to die today, would you leave behind the impression you want to? Of course everybody would talk about how nice you were because that’s what people do. Do you believe in your heart all the nice things are true that are being said about you? Are you who you want people to remember or will they have to tell lies or think really hard to come up with something nice to say at your funeral?

There are alot of people that think they are good people because they say thank you or say pardon me some times. Or maybe they put some change in the bucket during Christmas when the bells are ringing. Does this make you a good person or are you just trying to make other people think you are. Who are you really?

These questions should be asked by everyone of themselves if they truly care. Possibly you don’t care and that’s fine by me. I have always tried to find the good in people, no matter what kind of person I’m dealing with. You maybe a 100% jerk but, I’m looking at more then you think you are showing to me.

It doesn’t matter if your rich, poor or what ethnic background you have. I’m looking for the true you and I want others to do the same with me. I have known people that have shown an outward appearance of being a good person, when they are really masking who they are. I believe that most people want to be good but, some don’t know how.

Woman looking over the top of a book

When I tell you that I am looking at more than your outwardly appearance, I really do mean it. You have probably heard the expression “the eyes are the windows to the soul”. There is some truth to this even though it is a little off the mark in my opinion. I believe the eyes can show the spirit of a person in who they truly are. We are a trinity. We are a spirt with a soul incased in a body.

If you don’t believe the eyes tell who a person is, focus on someone’s eyes without thinking of any other part of their body and see what you will. Let’s look at a example. If there is a person who has bandages covering their face with only their eyes visible, tell me you can’t see what they are thinking or feeling.

People can look at others body motions, like the hands or the way they stand and usually tell alot about what that person is thinking. If a person has their arms folded while talking to you, they are either insecure or very upset. Taking the rest of the body language with this motion will tell you which one it is. Police officers are trained alot in body language to help them with their jobs along with keeping themselves safe.

Body language can be deceiving with someone that has trained themselves to not use the same body language that is normal though. This is what makes the eyes so important. The only thing a person can train to change what the eyes show is a dead stare or crying of course. But the eyes are truly the one thing that will tell you more about a person then anything. The eyes are so special and not to be ignored. If I talk to you face to face, you will notice that I watch your eyes. I want to know what kind of person I am dealing with. Even the police officers will ask you to remove your sunglasses when they are telling you what you did wrong. Why would they do this unless your eyes tell them something about what you are thinking? Do you have a kind spirit that wants to be good or not. Your eyes tell the truth.

Are you being what you want people to remember you by? Money means nothing to you when your gone. Can’t take it with you. You will leave all that you have for others to use, whether for good or bad. Your memory however, will last and will be the only thing others  truly have of you. All the possessions are just things you once owned.

Men carrying casket

If you die today, what kind of memories are you leaving for others? Do you care? If not then you are probably not a good person and the nice things said at your funeral will be false.

Let’s all try to live like we want to be remembered. Love, forgiveness and hope for ourselves as well as others. Be a good spirit with a clean and clear soul. We never know when our last breath may come. God Bless you and your families. Remember, we are all in this together.

What is your beauty?

Beauty is different for everyone. I will be discussing different kinds in this post. Come along for the ride and see if you fit into any of these things that I discuss. Maybe you can add to my list. Feel free to comment below.

First off, I will not be using humans in this context. This is because, if you ask a male what is beauty, guarantee that ninety-five percent of them will name a female and if you ask a female, ninety-five percent of them will mention a newborn baby. The beauty I am discussing must be something other than people.

Man welding

I remember a time when I was attending a Vo-tech class to learn welding. The beauty of the perfect bead was what made my heart skip a beat. Welders all over the world can understand my excitement of this. So melting two pieces of metal together can show beauty to the builder. What other kinds of beauty are there?

An archeologist can see beauty in a dusty, broken old pot pulled from the ground that has been buried for hundreds of years. A painter may find beauty in the shadow of a scenery. A musician will find beauty in a single note played on a piano.

Beauty is all around us at all times. We must slow down long enough to embrace and enjoy it. Watching ants prepare for a storm that is coming is a beautiful site. The trees swaying slightly with the wind in the woods is beauty. New born animals are true beauty, even when you know what they will look like when they get older.

Poetry book

Poetry is well known as beauty. This is not because of the rhyming. Some Poetry has no rhymes. The reason Poetry is so beautiful is because of the thought process it took the writer to write it and where it takes the reader while reading it. Poetry actually will take you into the dreams of the writer so, this will show how your dreams can have beauty as well.

So where is beauty? It is all around us, if we are just willing to look and listen for it. I love walking in the woods and looking at all the beautiful things. I grew up mostly living in the woods so I have learned a true joy of it. The cities can be beautiful but, for me it’s the countryside.

Do you live so fast and frantic that you don’t have time for the beautiful things around you? If you do, you are truly missing out on alot of life fulfilling things. I know that life can be hectic and sometimes it’s hard to slow down but, give it a try. It doesn’t take long to enjoy what is around you and it will help you mentally, physically and spiritually. Taking this small amount of time during each day will show you more to life then just rushing though it.

Clouds of a storm

I myself have found beauty in some of the strangest places. It can be something as small as a leaf falling to the ground or maybe as large as cloud formations in the sky. It is truly all around us in good and bad times alike. We just have to be willing to look and listen for it.

I challenge you today to take five minutes out of your busy day to find the beauty around you. If you will except this challenge, I will lay odds that tomorrow, you will be looking and listening again. Allow your heart to leap at something beautiful today. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

Fantasy vs Reality

The fastest way to get over a fantasy is with a dose of reality. This can be good or bad depending on the circumstances. An example of the bad is with a marriage starting with a fantasy and then real life hits you in the face. You realize that marriage is hard and love must be present for it to work. Just because your partner likes what you like or is good looking does not equal love. Alot of divorces come about because fantasies were started but love was left out. Of course there is the ultimate betrayal of one partner leaving a love for a fantasy.

Man and woman kissing in a dream

We all have our fantasies but, are they beyond what we should imagine? A child’s fantasies are a part of growing up and it can determine how far we go in life. If you see a child playing with a toy fire engine, he is probably saving lives and becoming a hero in his mind. The same child picks up his daddy’s cigarettes and the fantasy can become harmful in later years.

An adult who has fantasies about a co-worker can have a hard time focusing on his or her job. These same fantasies can also create a unemployment status for this person, if not a lawsuit for stalking.

Man and woman looking at each other in a fantasy setting

So when are fantasies a good thing and when do they cause harm? Most fantasies come upon us without much thought put into them. The important thing is to monitor these fantasies and ask ourselves the important question, “Is this fantasy going to cause harm to me or others?”

Fantasies are different then dreams, we have little control what we dream about in our sleep but, we do have complete control to stop a fantasy in its tracks. Fantasies are normal and you are not weird for having such thoughts in your life. How far you take them is up to you and carrying a fantasy too far can cause a tremendous amount of problems for you and others.

Don’t be afraid when a fantasy comes upon you. Just remember, you are in control of it. Have you heard the saying, “that person is living in a fantasy world?” You must be very careful in using such a sentence because their is a distinct difference between someone who fantasizes to someone who is a dreamer. A dreamer is thinking on something to better their lives while fantasy is usually a fairy tale.

Fire engine

Do you remember the boy playing with the fire engine? This may start as a fantasy and end up being his dream. I myself started at a young age with a fantasy of driving the big haul trucks in a mine. This fantasy turned into a dream of mine and later in life became a reality for me. These are good fantasies. I have also had fantasies of women I have known and I have had to shut them thoughts down because they were going to cause bad things to happen in my future. These are bad fantasies and need to be put to rest as soon as possible before a problem arises.

I hope you are catching what I am pitching. You are in control of you. Even though thoughts may come to you, you have the ability to continue to focus on them or completely destroy them in your mind. Please be careful of how you allow your mind to wander. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

Bring back God, save our Nation

The world has gone crazy and I’m losing my patience. Why is it with every one step forward, we seem to take two steps back? As a society, we are failing miserably. For every one thing that is changed to fix something that someone has a problem with, we create more problems that must be solved.

I thought that maybe I was just looking too hard into things that I don’t understand. These feelings are becoming stronger as I get older and look at the world with more mature eyes. No single group of people seems to be happy anymore. People all want something for nothing and are offended by everything and everyone. What happened to the world I grew up in? Are all the good times really over? Is their any hope left for mankind?

These are tough questions to ask one’s self and the reality of the conclusions are very bleak to say the least. Why has society changed to the point of total obliteration? Where exactly did we go wrong? Are we going to keep going downhill or are we going to wake up and fix this mess? I’m not sure how many of you see things the way I do and are also worried about the path we are heading down. I hope that I can find a majority somewhere that will stand with me and voice the problems we are causing ourselves.

United States flag

As I write this, I’m asking myself what all this is about, so let me throw out some examples. I live in the United States which is known worldwide as a free country. Lately we have become everything but free. We put ourselves up to show the rest of the world what freedom is all about. I believe we are now failing in our attempts to do just that. We will come to the aid of others in different parts of the world to help those in need. However, we no longer finish what we start. We do have the ability to solve many problems the world has as long as we have our friends in other nations to help us. The problem with doing this is we are too busy fighting amongst ourselves to be able to help others.

We as a nation see others as being wrong thinking but, we are now following what we fought against for years. Our nation was built to allow all peoples into our country no matter what race, religion or creed, as long as it is done legally. I see now that this is falling apart and needs to be fixed immediately if we are to survive and continue to aid others. We have no right to tell others how to live unless we can achieve this ourselves. When I was growing up, we were living the way we were teaching others. What changed in my beloved country?

Clouds in the sky (represent Heaven)

There is only one thing that is bringing this country down and when I tell you, you will either agree or quit reading immediately. Our country, even though we allow all types of people, was built with God in mind. If you look at our currency, it says “In God we trust”. This seems to have lost it’s meaning through the years and the people now have hardened their hearts. When we started turning our backs against the one who helped us become a nation, we began to  lose what we stand for.

The name God is different depending on what religion you follow. I myself am a Christian. I am not here to tell you whether you are right or wrong in your beliefs. We as Americans respect all people and religions. We do not stand in your way to believe what God you follow or don’t follow. However, for this to work, we must get back to the point where all Americans stand together once again. I want to help others help themselves in bringing back the foundation this great country was built upon.

Cross on a hill at sundown

I know I may lose followers due to this post but that’s alright. If this single post reaches just one person and helps them, it was all worth its weight in Gold! We say “God Bless America”, let’s stand up and invite the Almighty back to this country so we can go back to helping others worldwide.

This is all for now. I hope you will join me for future post. If I have offended you, this is not my intention. I will be here for you as long as you will allow me. God bless you and your families. Remember, we are all in this together.

Hopeful vs lucky

Hope is its own entity that must be fed constantly. Hope is what drives the human spirit to great achievements as well as keeping us in tune with the goals we set for our lives. Without hope, we are just like dust in the wind, ( no meaning and without direction ).

Some people tend to lean upon luck as their driving force. This is a great mistake and tends to lead to great failures as well. Luck is the opposite of hope and leads us to think in negative ways. When you stay living with luck, you are allowing others as well as your surroundings to control what happens in your life. This my friends is no way to live if you wish to have happiness in your life.

Lady closing her eyes and crossing her fingers

Let me see if I can get my point across in a way that may make more sense. Do you have dreams of what you want out of this life? Do you see something that you want and it makes your spirit leap because you can see the possibility of possessing such an object or situation? These are hopeful thoughts and they bring joy to us. Females are very good at this. Sometimes as early as twelve years old, a girl is already in a dream state of her wedding later in life. She is hoping for a good man that will bring her joy and a wedding that will be the envy of her friends. This woman didn’t get lucky to find a good man, she has been planning for years.

Have you ever seen someone who tends to have everything go their way? Of course, most will commit how lucky this person is. But maybe, just maybe this person knows something that you don’t and is using it to help things go their way. These people understand the difference between hope and luck.

If you win the lottery, are you hopeful or lucky? Wow, trick question right? This is not a trick question. Believe it or not, you are starting with hope but relying on luck. I bet you didn’t expect that answer, did you? If it started with luck, then you wouldn’t have bought that lottery ticket. It would just magically be that you won the lottery. You see even though you may feel lucky, you actually were using hope to start with because you did put in the effort and money to purchase that ticket. Now this is what I call “working against yourself.” While you did have hope to start with, you changed it to luck/chance in the aftermath. You essentially took a positive and turned it into a negative. Negative, meaning that you are now allowing someone or something to take control away from you. This is one reason why any kind of gambling can be addictive and cost you everything. You think you are working in the positive when in actuality, you have been leaning alot farther into the negative without even knowing it.

Have I lost you yet? Let’s try this a slightly different way. Hope consists of putting some form of effort into the situation. This can be thought, money, time or even the old adage; blood, sweat and tears. Whatever it is, there must be something from you to create it. Luck on the other hand, just automatically appears. You are at the mercy of whatever force is controlling the situation.

The highest form of hope is faith. Now some might say that is just for people who are religious. This is untrue. Although faith is used by some religions, it is also used outside of the church. If you look at the definition of faith, the first part will show like this: 1. A trust or confidence in the intentions or abilities of a person, object or ideal from prior empirical evidence. Here is a simple thought on faith. Your child has faith that you will take care of them. This is much stronger than hope.

A baby hold a mother's finger

Why did I bring up the word faith while talking about hope you might be asking. This is because when you use the word hope, it doesn’t quite have a full meaning to what I’m trying to get across. Using the word faith tends to have a greater meaning for people. To show you what I mean, here is a definition of hope: 1. the feeling of trust, confidence, belief or expectation that something wished for can or will happen.

Now that I have shown what hope is and the higher side of hope which is faith, let’s take a look at the definition of luck. Luck 1. something that happens by chance, a chance occurrence, especially a favorable one.

Do you understand now why I believe we must live by hope/faith instead of luck. With hope/faith you are taking control while luck is just something that happens and may or may not show up for you. Take control today. Here is my final word on this subject. This may or not make sense to you. “Faith is a substance of things hoped for and evidence of things not seen.” If you would like to know where you can find this, I will be happy to share. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

Power within you

You never know what you can do until the situation is presented to you.

We all have that extra amount of willingness, strength and determination when the time comes to call upon these. These extra bits of power usually show up during disasters of some sort within our lives but, can we pull these extras out without a disaster bringing them forth? The answer to this question is a definitive Yes, as long as we are within the right mental attitude and willing to practice until we have these mastered.

If these powers are within us, then they are also at our beckoned call. All we have to do is learn how to bring these powers into being when we want them.

Everyone has heard a story such as a woman being able to lift a car to save her child in a crash. Scientifically, this is determined by adrenaline. So why must there be a accident for this woman to call upon her body to produce enough adrenaline to lift this car? Why can’t she produce this adrenaline whenever it might help her in a normal situation? I believe this all comes down to training the body and mind to do what we ask, when we ask it to.

Professional baseball pitcher

I know this sounds far fetched and you probably think I’m losing my mind just by bringing it up. But the question is still there. Can we train our bodies and minds to do these super human feats upon command? I believe the answer to this is another definitive Yes. Let me explain why I think this is possible. If you look at things like martial arts, the human body can produce much more strength then we ever thought it could. Martial arts also requires a great amount of mental training. In baseball, the pitcher bends his arm in very unnatural ways to make the baseball react the way he wants. (If you want to see what I’m talking about with pitchers, record a baseball game and watch the pitcher in slow motion). How is this possible? You are correct, it all comes down to training of the body as well as the mind.

So after looking at martial arts and baseball, do you now believe we can train our body and mind to control these extra powers within us? I hope you now can see that I’m not out of my mind. I really do see these things as not only possible but, already proven.

Person do karate kick

Are you willing to put in the training to achieve these super powers? Most of us would have to say no. This is why there are only a select few that become professional sports players. There are many who practice but, only a small percentage that master martial arts. These special people are willing to put their body’s and minds through the training that is needed to use these super powers at their beckoned call.

You have these powers inside you and you can master them if you really want them. Of course you will have these super powers if you are ever in a disaster and need them immediately too. The human body and mind are much stronger then we give them credit.

I have no idea why I wrote this. I hope there is someone out there that needed to read this. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.

Good person (after dead)

I’m going to write about something that I have always had a problem with. Why is it, no matter what kind of person he or she was, people always say the one that died was a good person? Maybe it is proper during the funeral for the families sake but, if this is so and you don’t think this was a good person in life, then why are you at the funeral to begin with?

Tombstones at cemetery

How about the people that worked with said individual and knew they were a horrible person? When they hear of this person passing away, they always say they will be missed and what a great person he or she was. “Oh, it’s so sad that James passed away. I remember the time he waved at me and smiled.” Well, you knew him for forty years, I hope you can remember the one time he smiled and waved to you. Let’s face it, he was a horrible person in life and death only helps because you don’t have to deal with him anymore.

Maybe people say how great a person you were after you die just for their own peace of mind. Maybe there is more to it. Just possibly it’s because we see ourselves in that coffin and don’t want anyone to talk bad about us when it’s our turn. There are alot of theories out there but, I haven’t heard anyone trying to figure it out. I can say, if you plan on attending my funeral, you best speak truth. If you feel I was a terrible person, don’t hold back. Tell it like it is! I will have more respect for you if you tell the truth rather than lie to everyone.

One thing I will say is, once I’m gone, it doesn’t matter anymore. If I was a horrible person in life, then that is what I should be remembered for. If you feel like you need to say something but can’t think of anything nice without lying, then just say that I was what I was and leave it at that. Either show up at my funeral and speak the truth, be quiet or don’t show up at all.

Lady consoles another at funeral.

One thing I will say on this subject that does throw a wrench into matters is if you are related to the dead person. Sometimes we are required to show up at funerals and show our respect just because we are family. If we tell what a horrible person he or she was or if we don’t show up, we may be black balled by the rest of the family. This is the only excuse there is that is reasonable for a lie.

I will put this in print so if you need to, you can show the family members that I have given you permission not to show up or to tell exactly how you feel about me. Make sure you print this post so you have a record of it if you feel it may come in handy.

I wrote this post just to cause a question to be asked and answered. Why are people always good after they die? Can you answer this question? I look forward to your thoughts. Take care out there and Remember, we are all in this together.

Teaching without knowledge?

There is a saying, “Those that can’t do it, teach it”. The shorter version that I have always heard is “Those that can’t, teach”. Either way it is said is just plain dumb in my view. How can you truly teach someone something without being able to do it yourself?

Now I’m going to pick on teachers in the public school system a little bit here. I have had four children that I have watched go through the public school, two of which are still attending. I have found multiple times where teachers are teaching subjects that they themselves don’t understand. I will not tell which years or the names of said teachers. I am not here to condemn anyone. I am simply going to address things that I have witnessed through the years. If you are reading this and are one of these teachers guilty of this practice, I hope you will adjust you teaching methods accordingly.

Teacher pointing with stick at blackboard, holding book and looking at students
Teacher’s book is for your reference. The book is not the teacher

First subject I would like to address is math. When a teacher is teaching math and they have to look in the back of the teacher’s manual to be able to give the students the correct answer, you as a teacher need to study before teaching students. I am completely flabbergasted that there are teachers teaching math when they themselves don’t understand how to get the answer. I understand there maybe times that you need to refresh your own memory but, you need to do this before getting in front of your class. You know what you are going to be teaching your students the day before. Spend a little time the night before refreshing your skills. If you do this, your students will gain a greater respect for you and you will be a genius in their eyes.

Next subject I will discuss here will be gardening, agriculture, farming or whatever the school decides to call it. If you are the teacher of this sort of class, you must know how to use the farming type tools before you teach your students. A simple tool like a shovel use