Black Panther

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THIS MOVIE ROCKED!!!!

Incredible acting, incredible story, incredible action, another Marvel hit!

As a “comic book” girl since my youth, I am so happy to see another great, well scripted and put together hero come to the silver screen.  The Marvel franchise has put another notch in their belt with this hit.

I awaited this movie with great anticipation, as I have every Marvel movie since the first one, and was  not disappointed in the least.  I don’t care what any other reviewer says, this movie was awesome.

The beautiful landscape, the action and adventure, the plot, all kept you intrigued from beginning to end.  I laughed, I cried and I cheered.  This movie not only introduced us fully to another great hero; but was full of GIRL POWER to the max!!!  IMO, there is nothing better than a movie that not only empowers women; but gives little girls women to look up to.  These women allow little girls to have big dreams that they truly CAN do anything.

I’ve always been a comic book nerd.  My heroes in comics were Wonder Woman and Black Widow.  I watched Linda Evans on the screen every week playing Wonder Woman and loved her.  I also watched Isis, Shazam, Batman and Superman as well as the Super Friends.  I loved these shows and devoured comic books of my beloved Black Widow like a junky.  LOL!

I looked up to these heroes and let them inspire me to be more.  It’s one of the reasons I became a Marine.  I wanted to be a super hero.  I remember my first email address was “blackwidow@” and my father making fun of it.  He didn’t understand that she was my idol and inspiration.  It’s okay, though, he didn’t have to understand.  Before joining the Corps, I’d only known one woman Marine and she was such an incredible person and inspiration that it was like knowing my own super hero.  She died young, only 40 years old; but I knew she was a hero and that is what drove me forward.

I’m currently reading a book called, “Girls with Swords” by Lisa Bevere.  One of the things Lisa points out in this book is that women need to be empowered; because the enemy (satan) knows that woman will crush him beneath her feet as stated in Genesis.  We are mortal enemies.  It’s the reason women are being pushed down; but our time is coming.  We will defeat him.  We will rise up and we will beat him down.  It is only a matter of time.

Genesis 3:15 “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”

Women were made to be a partner with man.  We were not meant to be kept down.  We were made to fight at his side, to defeat the enemy.  Only together will we be able to bring him to his knees with our Father.

I truly believe we need to work together to give our children knowledge and power so we can stop drug trafficking, flesh peddlers, and rapists or anyone who puts us down as humans, stopping us from being courageous warriors.  We are in the fight of our lives.  Knowledge and power will prevail.  We need to stand together and say, “NO MORE!!”

I highly recommend this movie to all.  It is great and inspiring.

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Best Laid Plans

This has been a crazy week for us.  The boy had rehearsals all week long.  He had a performance on Friday evening, after which, we planned to see the movie, “Black Panther”.  I even pre-purchased the tickets at the theater, so we could go from the school upon our return right to the movie.  Well, as we were running late, and just came off stage at 8:30 pm and still had to watch one more school perform, I decided to call the theater and ask them to assist.

After explaining the situation, the theater has left 6 vouchers for us to use today in their office.  So, today, I am bringing the kids to the movie and we’ll get to see it.

Yesterday, they performed for the Edison Light Parade and we could not go to the movie.  They had great weather for the parade, met at the stadium at 4:15 pm and those bands participating in the parade spent that time dancing and blowing off steam until sunset when the parade kicked off.

They returned to the High School at 10:22 pm and were good and tired.

Between preparing for various MPA performances and Indoor Drumline, we’re busy until the first weekend in April.  After that, just prepping for Graduation.  I’m going to look at a new place for us to move to for less than I am paying now.

God only knows where this life is taking us.  I’m just along for the ride. 😀

Award Shows

Oh, it’s that time of year again.  Hollywood patting themselves on the back with various awards.  Roll out the red carpet; because here comes the “I am better than you” crowd.  It’s bad enough that these people make millions of dollars; but then they have to flaunt it on the red carpet, dressed to the nines, and sashay on into a theater to await their name being called while we peons sit at home and fawn all over them.  It’s enough to make me gag.

Way to go!  Great job of playing “Let’s Pretend” or singing that popular song!!!  Wooohooo!  PUH- LESE!!!  What about you?  What are you exceptional at doing?  Do you show up to your job on time and do it to the best of your ability everyday?  Where is your award?  And don’t tell me it’s the paycheck; because these carpet walkers are getting paid the big bucks to do their job.

Maybe you’re a full time mom and a full time worker who hasn’t had a day off or even a pee break alone in years.  Where is your award???  Maybe you’re a full time dad, worker, scout leader, coach and carpooler.  Did you get recognized with a statue for your accomplishments?  NO?  Why not?

I’ll tell you why not.  No one cares.  Yup, that’s right.  No one cares.  It isn’t as important to anyone; but your family.  So why do we care about all the pomp and circumstance given to these yahoos for singing a song well or acting in a show?

I sing well.  As a matter of fact, I sing very well.  I never recorded a record.  I’m not a chart breaker nor am I about to be.  I don’t need the validation of others to tell me that I am, either.  You’d think their 7 figure salaries would be enough; but nope, they need to be publically recognized by the world.

Personally, it is sickening to me.  All that glitz and glam for what?  Maybe they should be saving the money they spend there to feed the poor kids here in America.  Maybe they should be rescuing animals from abuse.  Maybe they should be volunteering at hospitals to cheer people up.

Invest your money in helping others.  Did you know that the poorest people give the most to charity?  People who barely get by give more of their time and money to others than those who make big bucks.

Yes, I love movies and television and music.  Yes, I appreciate the talent it takes for these accomplishments, however; I don’t see the point in giving them awards for “doing their job”.  These are as ridiculous as these same actors and singers coming out and bashing politicians.  Heck, some of them screaming the loudest are the ones who have no clue what is even going on in this country.

I guess after seeing the 3rd commercial for upcoming award events, I just got a little bit pissy over the whole thing.  I don’t watch.  I don’t care to watch.  I don’t care who wins what.  I only want to be the best ME I can be.  And I do it all without getting an award for doing it, too!

100% Service Connected Disabled Marine, mom to teen son, widowed, Domestic Violence survivor, blogger and American.  Can I get an award for that?  LOL!

Okay, okay, fine.  No award.  Let me get back to my life.

13 Reasons Why: Part 2

So, I have just spent the last 3 days watching the Netflix Series, “13 Reasons Why” based on the book by Jay Asher.  My original post can be found here.  Again, I warn you — “SPOILER ALERT!”

Based on the novel, it is a bit different in that it adds details that were not part of the book, such as the way those involved now interacted once each one received the tapes for listening.  It also involves a lawsuit involving Hannah Baker’s parents, in which they are suing the school because she was bullied.

It all starts with Clay Jenson, the 11th tape, who receives the 13 sides (7 tapes) in which Hannah Baker tells what has led her to take her own life.   In this version, Clay gets all kinds of grief from the others involved; because the young man has a conscience and a good moral code and standard.  After each tape, he confronts the antagonist with their part and causes them to all begin to question their roles in the end of this young woman’s life.

Let me tell you something.  It is not fun to be bullied.  It is not fun to be teased for being different and it’s not fun to be beaten up or raped.  Your actions have consequences.  What you do, you are accountable for and responsible for the fall out.  Life does not give you an easy way out when you have wronged another.  You may not see it right away; but eventually, it comes around.

Young men have to be crystal clear on getting a YES before having sex, because rape is a horrible thing.  Of course, a man can also be raped and the same rule applies.

The ripple effect.  When one action leads to another, bringing on another, etc. resulting in an end action that could have been prevented or maybe having a lasting effect on another.  You see, we’re all ripples and we effect the lives of all of those around us.  I have a bad day.  I run into someone and lose my temper with them, causing them to have their own ruined day and the effect moves ever onward.  OR  Someone having a bad day, runs into me and I decide to NOT allow it to ruin my day.  It can go either way.

Eg. Several years ago, my neighbor’s son parked his car on the street, and while I was backing out of the driveway, I hit the door and dented it.  I immediately contacted the neighbor of the incident.  He was upset; but understood, accidents happen. His son parked it illegally and there wasn’t enough room for me to back up; but I was still in the wrong and admitted it.  The police came and we were both faulted for the incident.  However, my neighbor’s wife was another story.  She came out, ranting and raving about it, calling me names, making me more upset about making an error in judgment.

Anyway, I digress.  The 13 episodes, based on the book, sent a powerful message and I would recommend it, if you read the books or not.  It’s a powerful story; but it makes a person think and consider their actions.  I hope that those who watch it, know that they have other options in this life.  Suicide is not an option.

Teens, especially, are vulnerable.  Hormones, emotions gone wild, not understanding or knowing how to talk about what is going on, fear, embarrassment, a multitude of reasons we adults can’t remember feeling “way back then” will assault a young mind into believing that they are unworthy, too far gone, afraid, whatever!!!  The worst thing, is being lost and alone.

BUT, You Are NOT ALONE!!!  Someone loves you. Mom, dad, best friend, cousin, aunt, uncle, etc.  Someone out there loves you.  Just reach out.  Someone will take your hand and if, for some reason, you feel you can’t, call a hotline.  There IS help out there.

http://13reasonswhy.info  has resources to assist you!

Don’t give up!  YOU MATTER!!!

Addendum:  I’ve just read several articles from parents who are totally opposed to this movie and it’s book.   Reason?  It deals with a dead girl, who killed herself and that is NOT the way to deal with this subject and teens.  Or they say that it glamourizes suicide.  WOW!!! Really?

Okay, so several year ago, a teen in our town killed herself for the same reasons given in the book.   I know kids who were friends with this girl.  Kids that were upset, knew she was bullied and did nothing to help her.  The fall out from that suicide was horrible.  What did they do?  Counselors were available for those in need; but for the most part, it was a non-issue for the school district.  Oh and an anti-bully rally was had, with miserable attendance so as to have no real effect.

With that being said, I have to wonder what is the right approach to this subject?  We discuss the issue in school.  Most kids think it’s a joke.  They make fun of those who are on their films, posters and the stories when they leave the auditorium  I’ve seen it.  I’ve heard it.  What will it take to get through to teens?  I don’t have the right answers; but I do know that sometimes it takes a book and series like this one to wake people up.

I don’t have the answers.  What I do have is a desire to save the next person who wants to do so. Sometimes it is no ones fault.  Sometimes the fault lies with persons who a no longer in the picture.

I also know that the guilt of the survivors is hard.  When my friend tried to kill himself several years ago, he was suffering from the horrors of childhood, which he’d never fully dealt with and a 20 year marriage that went down the tubes, the still births of two daughters  and his 2 lives sons telling him to screw off.  That’s a lot of baggage for someone.  He attempted, I called the police and ambulance and then I was left with the repercussions.  In his mind, he was the victim and I had no reason to feel anything.  I did, though.  I suffered.

No matter the reasons, the hurt is long lasting.  We need to face this issue head on.  It happens.  It hurts all involved.  We need to wake up and IMO, this series/book does not glamorize suicide, it shows the fall out and how it leaves the people behind feeling.  We have to stop sheltering our kids; because we’re raising generations of people who are weaker and less able to handle everyday stress, let alone major crisis.

Wake up!

 

Movies, Madness & Mayhem

So happy that it’s fast approaching the new year.  I can only hope that life will keep getting better and better.

Went to see “Greatest Showman” last night with my son and a few of his friends.  Loved it, even though it is not even close to being a biographical story on P.T. Barnum’s life, it was, however; a great movie.  The music, singing and dancing were excellent.  I’d go see it a 2nd time for sure.  From beautiful clothes and scenery to the great acting, it was a beautiful movie.  It definitely was inspirational in that it encourages us to chase our dreams, no matter what anyone else thinks or feels.

As for the Lord and me, we’ve been trying to communicate to no avail.  I’ve been praying, asking and seeking; but I’m getting confusing replies and I’m sure that it will become clearer to me as time goes on; but at present, I’m hitting a few walls.  I’ve had two dreams on point, though they confused me greatly, I’ve received several picture clues as well; but I think I’m blocking them.  I’ve received several “MY plan, MY will, MY way” scriptures and I’m just hoping that I’ll figure it all out in time.  I think my upset from last week has me shut down on some levels and I have to let that go and continue on.  My heart is hurting; but I will carry on with the faith walk.

As for they mayhem, well, the dog is driving me nuts.  His bladder control problems are wrecking havoc all over the house and I just want to scream.  I know it’s not his fault; but it is messy and driving me nuts just the same.  I mop the floors daily.  As soon as I finish, I’m positive he waits until just then and he does it again.  UGH!

I’ve just finished John Bevere’s book, “Holy Spirit”.  Awesome book.  Loved it.  Can’t wait to start my next one, “Girls with a Sword” by his wife, Lisa Bevere.  I’ve listened to both of them speak on YouTube and am very impressed with their teachings on God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  I’m trying to grow closer to God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit in my faith walk.  I can only hope to get to the level these two people have reached.

I am currently sharing the job of Audio-Visual duties with another at my church.  Since we no longer have any children for “Kids Church”  I’m not teaching.  We have only 3 youth, who go to AWANA at another church on Wednesday night, so I don’t have duties for them, so I’ve been at a loss.  My dear friend has been doing the AV for years and I had the opportunity to do it for her a few weeks ago since she was unavailable.  Well, I so enjoyed it, I told her I’d love to join her in this duty.  She was overjoyed and I now feel I have renewed purpose in my church life.  So, we’re switching out weeks as needed.  When I have Indoor Drumline duty the end of January and twice in March, she’ll take it and other than that, we’ll have every other week.

I love to serve.  I like to feel useful and I know that this will be the best thing for me after the boy goes off to college.  YEAH!

Can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for us all!

Grinchmas Party!!!!

Today was my son’s “Grinchmas” Party with his friends here at the house.  Since it was a half day, I picked them up after school and made lunch.

For lunch, I made a spiral ham, mac and cheese, green bean casserole along with spinach-artichoke dip, veggie dip, lentil hummus and various desserts. The kids loved it and they had a great time.  Gifts were exchanged, watched the Grinch movie and laughed their butts off.

One young man, who we’d be trying to figure out what to get him, was very hard to purchase for, so I made him a bunch of “gag” gifts, which we gave  to him first and then his actual gift.

The gag gifts:  A belly button lint cleaner (a pipe cleaner I’d bent to look like a toilet brush 1″ long.  A redneck raincoat (black trash bag), air guitar strings (empty plastic bag), a money clip (paper clip with a penny glued to it), two #2 pencils (with brown, spiraled pipe cleaners on top like the poo emoji), a pet cloud (5 cotton balls glued together with eyes), a natural blow dryer (balloon) and a little bag of pot (plastic pot from a kids kitchen set).  He LOVED it.  Such a great kid and a super fun time he had.  Plus, he loved the other gifts we got him as well.

I am so blessed to have such wonderful young men and women in my life.  They certainly made for a great afternoon.

Yesterday, I was freaking out.  My USMC ring broke.  It’s made with both yellow and white gold and the white gold “eagle, globe & anchor”, which was attached through the middle of the gold ring, broke off.  I had no idea where it was.  I searched for hours.  Drove me nuts!  Couldn’t find it at all.  Tore apart the garbage, looked in the disposal, under the bed, in the sink drain, etc.

I climbed into be last night and there it was, laying under the pillow.  So grateful for finding it!!  Took it to the jeweler today and it will be ready tomorrow.  YEAH!  I’ve had it since 2009 and I felt devastated when I thought it was lost.  Now, I’m celebrating that it can be fixed!!!!  They no longer make it, so I’d have been so distraught over it’s loss.  😦

There are not a lot of things that I have that would make me sad; but not having my ring would be one of them.   It’s a sentimental thing and not a material thing.  Back in 1994, I’d had everything from my child hood to that present day stolen from a storage unit in KY.  I was upset; but the things that were missing that hurt me most were the pictures in my photo albums.  To this day, I’d give anything for them to be returned.  I don’t put much value on material possessions.  Even though I had about $20,000 worth of stuff stolen, collector items that were valuable, it was the pictures and journals.  Oh well.  Can’t get them back.

Merry Christmas everyone!!!!!

 

Every Little Thing

Yesterday was my sons last Marching  Band Competition in Lake Worth, FL.  We took a charter bus there and for 3 1/2 hours, we were not allowed to eat, drink or use the bathroom.  WTH!!!!!  By hour 2, I had to pee so bad and I was over the limit by the time we arrived.  I tell you, THAT was my 1st priority when we got there.

Oh and one of the girls in the band, while we were still at the high school, walked past where I was sitting and accidently hit me in the head with her Mellophonium case. I’ve got a lump and it hurts; but like I said, it was an accident.  I teased her the rest of the day about it.  Now, I’ve teased every kid in that band at one time or another.  They all know me; but for some reason, she has no sense of humor and got upset.  I told her that I was teasing and I had to apologize to her for having fun with it.

I love these kids.  I’ve told them on plenty of occasions that I do.  I’ve hugged more than half of them on more than one occasion, too.  I’ve tied shoes, I’ve zipped and unzipped jackets (in the back), helped them put in plumes and take them out.  I’ve bought snacks when no one else thought of it.  I’ve taken more than a few out, had them in my home for parties and meals and enjoyed being their biggest fan and cheerleader.

The competition was a lot of fun for all of us and the kids came in 2nd place in their division.  So happy.  Mom & Dad came up from Florida City to watch and stayed until 6 pm.  It all ended around 10:30 pm.   Worst part of the trip?  Stinky footed ride home. UGH!

Auditions for Indoor Drumline are on Thursday.   There show this year is called, “Breathe” and the kids voted between this and another one last Wednesday.  They are looking forward to starting the next “season” with this show.  I’m not sure when rehearsals start; but I do know that they’ll have the same 2 day rehearsal schedule.  My son has already memorized the audition piece and was playing it yesterday while waiting for the others to finish setting up so they could start warm-ups.  His teacher was impressed since they’d just gotten it the night before, after their last game of the season.

I drop off two band kids before we headed home at a bit after 1 am (2 am) LOL!  On the radio, while stopped at a traffic light is the new country song, “Every Little Thing” by Carly Pearce.  I’ve loved the song since I first heard it.  However, this time, it hit me hard.  Memories I didn’t want to remember came flooding back and tears stung my eyes.

“Every little thing
I remember every little thing
The high, the hurt, the shine, the sting
Of every little thing”

Even though I have left it all behind me, the mind still does random memory checks that flash before you like an unwanted movie, forcing you to see what you’d rather not.  I often wish I could just remove them from my mind so that I never have to review them again; but alas, it doesn’t work that way.  <sigh>

It’s a wonder my blog title is “Mind of a Mad Woman” because these memories are definitely what has made me as mad as a hatter can be.  LOL!  There is one thing I can say and that is the ride these last 49 years has been anything; but boring.

A friend asked me if I’d participate in his November Patriot Recognition.  I told him sure and that I’d get back to him.  I have to gather my thoughts and see what to reveal and what not to reveal. Ha, ha!

My birthday week, last week, was awesome.  Birthday Tuesday with dinner and cake.  Wednesday morning breakfast with my girlfriends in God.  Thursday lunch with one who could not make it to breakfast and Friday, spur of the moment Mexican dinner with same friend and another friend.  Great, great week!  So far, 49 is a great age. 😀

OH, and my son, he is not liking that he is now 18 and an adult. LOL!  He still wants to be a kid.  Speaking of which, he uploaded his auditions for his college application and submitted it for early admissions.  I told him I’ve prayed on it and believe it for a fact that he will get in.  Now, we wait to hear.  Not sweating it or stressing it; because there is no reason to, God’s got this.

Spent the morning cleaning house.  When I get to wanting to clean, I whip through my house like a tornado and everyone just backs away as I do what I have to do.  I was so busy doing other things this week, that it got away from me; but now that we’re back on the clean side of life, I’m happier. 😀

Life is good.

 

Super Carlin Brothers

Many people, especially teens, are familiar with YouTube and their many videos.  From anima to music and more, if it’s a video, you are likely to find it there.  It doesn’t matter what your interest is, you can search for it and likely find various videos in response to your query.  I’ve watched many crafting videos there to learn how to do many things.  It’s a super cool place to visit and can be very addicting as well.

Last year, as Marching Season came to an end and my son, no longer needing me to drive him to and from school after hours, as a typical teenage boy, spoke to me for a total of 5-10 minutes daily.  This included rides to and from school and while we ate dinner together.  To say I was feeling alone is an understatement.  Especially since the previous year and a half I’d spent taking care of a sick friend 24/7 and his passing left me with a lot of free time.

In typical teenage fashion, probably to get me off his back, he told me about how he loves to watch various YouTube videos and that there were a lot of channels there and I may find something of interest on it, since I was not into watching television all that much.

YouTube suggested a number of videos to watch, one of which was Super Carlin Brothers.  Super Carlin Brothers is two young men, who started a year long conversation with each other via video uploads in May of 2012.  What got me hooked on their channel was their love of Harry Potter and Pixar.

So began the journey to binge watch every video they made from day one to the present. LOL!  Who are the Super Carlin Brothers?  Two brothers from the Roanoke, VA area who were inspired by John & Hank Green to start to start their own YouTube channel and see where it would go.

Jonathan Carlin or “J” , the older brother, was super excited to be a new video maker and was very enthusiastic from day one.  All of his videos were intense and fun; because of his obvious love of doing them.

Ben Carlin, on the other hand, looked terrified for his first year or so.  He was not as comfortable as his older brother with the idea of making videos, let alone being put on the internet for anyone in the world to watch.  It made him seem vulnerable and sweet.

They also have a younger brother, Tyler, who has guest appeared in several videos; but is not a regular on the channel.

As the years began to pass, they became more and more invested in their channel and much better at the whole video posting world.  J has never lost his enthusiasm and Ben has become relaxed and more excited about being an internet celebrity.  I just love watching them.

You get to really know these guys well over the years as they tell so much about their personal lives.  J shared videos about getting engaged, married and is currently expecting his first child.  The viewers have all shared in these wonderful life events with him.

Ben owns an aquarium business in the area and has shared some of his “fish tales” on the channel.  You can even hear about his frustrations about Nemo & Dory making the business a bit harder; because kids began wanting tanks with fish similar to the fish in the movies.  I won’t spoil it; go see for yourself.  😀

You can check them out in this link:  SuperCarlinBrothers

Ben & J influenced another young YouTuber into making his own video channel.  I also got hooked on watching Seamus Gorman.  Seamus is from England and is also a theorist of the Pixar and Potter universe.  He actually came to the US about a week ago to meet Ben & J for the first time and collaborate on a few videos and theories with them.  It was great!!  You can check out Seamus Gorman’s channel in this link:  Seamus Gorman.

As I have watched all of the videos on both of these channels, I now have to wait each week for new material to come out.  That’s what happens when you binge watch things. LOL!  Of course, I’ve also gone back and re-watched some of them when I can’t remember what they were about by just the title.

These two channels have really made me rethink and re-watch movies I’d previously seen with different eyes as well as reexamine the HP books like never before.  I like things that make me think.  So, if you, like me, are looking for new takes on movies or want to visit various theories, check out their links.

I’m also a stalker, I mean fan, of theirs on Instagram.  J & Ben post a lot of their social lives on there daily.  I also follow J’s wife, who is adorable, as she shows off her baby bump and gets ready for the Super Carlin Baby to arrive.

World Gone Mad

From the NFL taking a knee, the current hatred of the President and everyone offended by any and everybody that doesn’t agree with them, this world has fallen into sheer madness.  I never thought I’d see the day when it was okay to report news that is half truths, personal attacks and complete dishonesty.  SMH!

If you are not happy with someone or want to hurt someone, whip out your phone, record them and send it viral.  There is no such thing as privacy anymore and you never know when even the most innocent actions are recorded and sent viral.

She’s too fat.  He’s too skinny.  Look at all those tattoos!  What a monster!!  Body shaming, sexual disorientation and GMO’s turning food into crap, it’s a wonder we’re all still alive.  Add to that the fact that when someone cries out for help, they turn the victim into a predator who asked for it and we wonder why our children are confused, inconsiderate brats.

Good is bad, bad is good and even the most innocent of gestures are turned into civil rights violations, we’re heading straight to hell.

I posted on Facebook about my unhappiness with the NFL’s protest to take a knee in the workplace.  I am a retired US Marine and I am offended by the way “million dollar babies” are taking a knee on the field and not doing anything about the problem when they’re off the field.  A friend was quick to point out that a veteran was the one who gave the suggestion to Colin in the first place.  I DON’T CARE!  It was wrong no matter who suggested it and that it continues is just going to kill their franchise in the end.

Am I supposed to feel shamed that a vet was the one who made the suggestion?  Hell no!  Is my opinion less valuable than yours?  Hell no!  Wrong is wrong.  If I am making money off of you, for entertainment purposes, I will entertain.  My opinion has no baring.  Further, if I was working at McDonalds and you ordered a hamburger and I’m a vegan, do I have the right to tell you that I will not serve you?  Hell no!  My job is to provide a service, not lecture you on how offended I am that you eat meat.

In the same spirit, once I clock out, I can protest up the street in the meat packing district about how killing animals for food is bad.  I am no longer on the job, getting paid; but out in the world, sharing my dislike.

We’re the laughing stock of the world.  Our country has always been known as the land of opportunity; but what opportunity do you have when everything is considered offensive?  We were founded on freedom.  You want to worship God, go ahead.  You want to worship satan?  Go ahead.  You want to voice an opinion?  Go for it.  You want to own a gun?  You can.

The problem we face today, however; is that people want us to conform to where they come from, their traditions or religion.   Or people want us to surrender our weapons.  Your opinion is invalid if it doesn’t match that of the minor elite.

My cousin loves to voice her opinion on everything.  Lord help the person who makes a negative comment on her comment, she’ll go postal on them.  She’s a staunch believer that her voice counts.  She faces bullies on the internet with regularity.  (I think she may even thrive on it, LOL!)

I am sadden by this country and this world.  We’re quick to judge, unforgiving and want our cake and to eat it, too.  I fear we’re on a crash course to implosion and all I can do is pray that God blesses and saves us from ourselves.

I fear for the fate of this nation and world.  Kiddie porn, rape, abuse, sex slaves and more are on the rise and we’re powerless to do a thing about it.  Offensive behavior is the norm and destruction is everywhere.  We don’t build up, we tear down.  Makes me want to become a mountain hermit.

Only God can help us now.

Autumn Dreams

Ah, Autumn, how I miss the smell, the crisp air, the crunch of leaves under foot, a light sweater and the beautiful colors.  I sometimes wish I was still up north, enjoying the season in it’s full glory.

I used to love to hike in the mountains and enjoy the Autumn in all it’s splendor.  I love it so much and is truly the only thing I miss about this time of year.  I remember when I was pregnant with my son and we didn’t know if he was a boy or girl yet.  We picked two names.  If a girl, she was to be Autumn Hope.  But, alas, he was not a girl and his name is perfect for him.

It’s only 3 days until we celebrate his 18th birthday.  I can hardly believe that he will be 18.  The years seem to have flown by so quickly. I still reminisce about the joyous times we’ve spent together.  He’s been my miracle since birth and I have enjoyed every moment of it I’ve spent with him.  I am incredibly blessed by God to have been chosen to be his mother.  He turns 18 and 6 days later, I turn 49.  Best birthday present ever! ❤

Last night at church, our Pastor discussed Matthew 25:14-29 — The Parable of the Talents.  In this parable, three men are given talents from their overseer to take care of while he was away.  The 1st man was given 5 talents and multiplied it to 10.  The next was given two and multiplied it to 4.  The final man received only one and he buried and hoarded it, not doing a single thing.  Upon the overseers return, he congratulated the two investors and chastised the sloth, casting him out.

As we reviewed the scripture, we began to understand it.  God gives us each talents.  We are all unique, we are all in receipt of abilities that are ours alone and we are to use them to glorify God.  Because, sometimes, we are the only person who is seen by others as God in the flesh.

I took a “Spiritual Gifts” test to figure out what God had given me to use in this world for His glory.  I received giving, caring and mercy as my top 3 gifts.  (These were far above the other gifts you can receive) I have to say, they were pretty obvious to me, even before the test; but to have it confirmed, was a pleasant surprise.

As I reflect on my life, I see these gifts in so many parts of it.  I’ve always felt it is better to give than to receive.  I take great delight in giving things to people and watching their joy and happiness unfold.  I’m also a natural care giver.  I feel my best when I am able to take care of people and ensure their well being and happiness.  As for mercy, I have always forgiven others much more than they deserve.  It’s why my ex-husband told close friends of our years that he could sh*t all over me and I’d always take him back.  <sigh>

I do it all for Him, and still, I cannot do enough for Him.  It is just not possible.

It’s been a strange few weeks.  For some reason, the Lord is surrounding me with the name of my “love”.  I chaperoned my son’s competition a few weeks back and there were 3 boys with his name, sitting and speaking with me.  I turn on the t.v. and I hear both his given name and nickname, which is not a common one.  I hear it on the radio.  I’ve encountered several while out and about in stores, the mechanics, at the VA,  and on.  It is so weird; but also mysterious as to why I am being bombarded with his name.

November will be 2 years since we’ve reconnected.  In 2015, his name popped into my mind, unexpectedly, while driving home after dropping my son at school.  This has happened to me with various friends I’ve know and usually after I reminisce about them, I forget them again and move on.  Not this time.  Three days later, I am still thinking of him and I decide to look him up on Facebook.  He’s the first choice and I check him out and decide to friend him.  He immediately connects and I move on.  Nope, still there.  UGH!  So, I send him a message.  He had pneumonia, so I tell him I’m praying for him to get better quickly and I’m sure he doesn’t remember me at all.  Low & behold, he not only remembers me; but looked for me on more than one occasion; but to no avail.  LOL!  Spelling my name is a bitch. LOL!  No one gets it right.  So we chat several times over the next year.  He dates a woman, I pray for his relationship.  It ends, I pray for his heartbreak.  Until last November.

November 2016 is when I get the vision of him in church during prayer.  It shocks, it disturbs and scares me.  I come home from church, deeply upset and after an hour of contemplation, I message him angrily and tell him I don’t appreciate his invading my God time, etc.  He finds it funny, I don’t.  I pray about it and God let’s me know His plan and his involvement in it.  I’m in shock.

As this year has gone by, this man and I have had several conversations in which he teases me, leads me on and then disappears from communication for months.  Drives me insane.  Now, I’ve read several articles that state if a man shows no interest, move on.  I have tried.  I pray daily.  I ask God for clarification.  Each time, God answers: “Stay faithful to Me, the plan and the man.”  So I do.

So, here I am.  Still faithful to my Lord, His plan and the man. 😀  Only God knows how this will come to fruition; because He is the author of this love story.  ❤

My son has only 2 more weeks until the end of Marching Band season.  Not sure if the new Band Director is going to be doing Indoor Drumline this year or not.  We shall see.  Because of Hurricane Irma, the band is not motivated at all.  They seem to have lost their mojo for performing.  My son and his friends, who usually love it, seem down and ready for it to end.

I’m almost hoping we don’t have Indoor; but we shall see.  I found out he is graduating on May 19th at 10am and I’m happy for him.  Looking forward to him to do so and also missing the fact that he’s going to go to college at the same time.  So proud of him, though.

And time marches on………………..