83 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 2-16-19

  1. Robins have a reputation of being birds of spring, but I grew up seeing robins only in fall and winter. They migrate down to Phoenix but do not stay and breed there.

    When I was a student in college, I really struggled financially. I worked a lot of hours but got further and further behind. One winter day, likely over Christmas break when most students went home but I didn’t, I was walking across the campus and talking to God and crying, feeling the stress of it all. There was snow on the ground, but I stopped short because there in the tree ahead of me were five or six robins. They were eating berries. One or two robins went down to the snow-covered ground to pick up fallen berries. And I smiled through my tears and said out loud, “God, if You can care for robins in the snow, I can trust You to care for me too.”

    What I have found out since then is that not all robins migrate. If they expect there to be enough food to get them through winter, they stick around. In winter they eat berries (in summer more insect food, but that’s in short supply in winter), and the more individuals and communities plant berry-producing plants and trees, the more it helps cedar waxwings and robins (and other species) have winter food. We have many berries around here, and I’ve seen robins all winter. Like many birds, they hang out in flocks in winter, but in summer they are in pairs and in fall perhaps in family groups (the last nesting of the year, in many species, stays with their parents longer–I’ve seen it in bluebirds, where in fall you see the young continue to stay together as they molt into their adult feathers, and the parents hang out with them too–which species do this, I don’t know, but robins likely do too).

    These robins were from a flock of maybe a dozen birds. They were grouped among two trees and the stream, with continuous flying up to the trees and down to the stream, a few birds each place. (Normally I wouldn’t call a group of birds in a tree part of the same “flock” as birds in a creek, but the same birds were clearly rotating among the spots.) I watched for any robin to bathe, since robins do like bathing, but apparently the water was too cold even for robins to bathe. I did see one in the water for a second, but he might have fallen in accidentally or he may have decided immediately it was too cold. Mostly they were wading and drinking, and I think they were also finding food. This creek flows even when the thermometer says 27 or 28 degrees, and I think it was right around freezing that day. The scene looks far warmer than it actually was.

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  2. Morning! That photo must be telling us Spring is in the air somewhere. Isn’t the sighting of a robin the first indicator?
    We have no robins here in the forest yet but we are set to have some snow today and Monday and Wednesday and Friday!! ⛄️
    But for now I am seeing pinkish clouds off to the west with pale blue sky peeking through the pines. The crazy winds have calmed down for now but we will have 40mph winds with the snow this afternoon. Hang on to your hats it’s going to be a bumpy ride!! πŸ™ƒ πŸ’¨

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  3. Good morning! I am thankful the rain has stopped and the sun is peeping through. I am enjoying a cup of coffee. I have been drinking more tea and less coffee to keep my blood pressure lower. I found the Twinings tea on sale at Sprouts yesterday, BOGO. I bought two of the Irish Breakfast tea. I wanted Oolong, but they were all sold out.

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  4. I saw on Facebook that hammered metallic sinks are a new trend in home interiors. I may soon need a new kitchen sink so it was interesting to see. I imagine it not being as practical in keeping it clean, but it did look pretty neat.

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  5. I haven’t seen any robins yet, but usually do by March 1.

    DJ- In answer to your question about Barry Macguire, this from Wikipedia:

    McGuire became a born-again Christian in 1971 after a brief encounter with evangelist Arthur Blessitt in October 1970.

    He was the one who discovered The 2nd Chapter of Acts (the singing group, not the Scripture) because of his friendship with Buck Herring, Annie Herring’s wife. She is the one who wrote most of the 2nd Chapter’s music.

    I remember when I worked at the Christian radio station on the mid 70s all the excitement when Barry released his early Christian album. It was an okay album, but not that great. His music went downhill from there, except for his children’s album, “Bullfrogs and Butterflies”.

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  6. Barry Mcguire after he became a believer. It was a small concert in a little room at the university. Probably about ’75, ’76. Evie was a couple years before that and Styx a couple years after. I did not think much of the Styx concert, way too loud. No more indoor concerts for me but we did attend lots of the military band concerts at the park at West Point. We took our picnic and blankets and sat with the crowds once a week in the summer. Very pleasant Sunday afternoons.

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  7. Kim asked a question about primary hyperparathyroidism. First, the parathyroid glands, although located close to the thyroid, are not the same as the thyroid. The thyroid regulates body metabolism. The parathyroid glands – there are usually four of them on the back of the thyroid – help to regulate calcium levels in the blood, which is an extremely important task, as the heart uses calcium ions to keep beating.

    The term Primary means that the problem is with one or more of the parathyroid glands themselves, rather than effects from a secondary or tertiary cause (another disease or condition). The prefix hyper indicates that the gland or glands are overactive, producing too much of the hormone they secrete and thus causing too much of the intended effect. The hormone produced by the parathyroid gland is called PTH (parathyroid hormone) and it increases calcium levels in the blood by stimulating re-uptake of calcium in the kidneys and release of calcium from the bones. If there is too much PTH it can cause hypercalcemia, which is too much calcium in the blood. Among the effects of hypercalcemia from primary hyperparathyroidism are kidney stones (as the kidneys try to reabsorb too much calcium), osteoporosis (as the bones release too much calcium), muscle weakness & atrophy, anxiety, depression, sleep disturbances, confusion, high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, and heart problems from calcification of the heart. Calcium is used for far more in the body than just building strong bones, so high blood levels of calcium affects far more than the bones.

    Unforunately, the only way to really stop an overactive endocrine gland (any hormone producing gland is an endocrine gland) that is no longer listening to the body’s signals to stop is reduce or remove it. The parathyroid glands are tiny, only 3 mm in diameter, and there can also be ectopic parathyroid glands, which are located elsewhere in the body other than the usual location under the thyroid. Minimally invasive surgery uses imaging (a scan or sonogram) to identify the problematic parathyroid gland. A very small incision is made to expose that gland. The patient’s PTH levels are measured before and after the gland is removed, to confirm that it was the problem gland (there will be a sharp drop in PTH levels within 5 to 10 minutes after removal if the gland was the one malfunctioning). If the gland removed was not the malfunctioning gland, they can actually reattach it and go on to find the real culprit. Since usually not all the parathyroid glands need to be removed, many patients have no need for medication afterwards, while those who do are given calcium supplements.

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  8. On the discussion of the first concert one attended yesterday (I was homeward bound yesterday for reading week), I see Peter ruled out classical music performances as being concerts, so I guess I have never been to a concert πŸ˜‰

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  9. I wrote this post last night but fell asleep and did not send it until 1:30 a.m. For those who missed it:
    “My first concert was Chicago. I’ve seen the Almon Brothers, Neil Young, a triple header of Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson and John Melencamp, Gordon Lightfoot, the Getty’s, and Lorenna McKinnet. I may not have spelled all those names correctly. I am probably forgetting some other bands since I never enjoyed the concerts as much as I enjoyed listening to albums at home. The concerts cost so much and you can’t hear it again unless they record live. I never liked being around all the smoke at concerts and how people passed the joints around.”

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  10. My first concert was for Hermans Hermits. I wore a dress I had sewn myself. We sat. Those were the days one could sit in comfort for a concert. I am not fond of the ‘everybody stand throughout the whole concert, if you want to actually see the stage’ we have at many concerts today.

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  11. Husband used to take the children to the symphony regularly. He says they all behaved well but one year the prices went up abruptly from free for children to fifteen each and the adult price went up as well. So I wondered if somebody might have done something. They really seemed to enjoy the experience

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  12. Phos @ 10:27 And God figured that out all by Himself.

    I used to think all concerts were classical music. I never considered the Opry stage to be a place for concerts. I have been to several concerts. The ones I liked best were the Chuck Wagon Gang.

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  13. I love sleeping in, but the cat makes sure I don’t sleep in for too long.

    Barry MacGuire probably is an acquired taste, I’d guess. Church friend who was in the recording studio/music business at one point said Joe Cocker also was a believer. I had a cassette tape by 2nd Chapter of Acts, as I recall. Remember cassette tapes?

    My mom loved Herman’s Hermits, they seemed like nice boys who sang nice songs (compared to some of the other things coming out in the 1960s). πŸ™‚

    I love the hammered copper look in pots and pans, they probably have that look in sinks, too. I know farm sinks were/are big also.

    Spotting the first robin was a big deal in Iowa when I was little. I still remember standing at the window with my mom in my grandfather’s old house as she pointed one out to me one year. She and my grandfather were very excited.

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  14. My first concert (the word concert was originally used for classical music performances) was at the age of five. The instructor of children’s music program, which my parents scraped together the money for us to attend, was able to get her classes in to see performances at the concert hall in the community college. I got to see a famous Canadian concert violinist in concert. From that moment on, I knew I wanted to play the violin. My parents said I could once I got my grade five certificate in piano – one can earn the music grade certificates through a private instructor, by registering for and taking exams from the Royal Conservatory of Music that are offered on a yearly basis in communities throughout Canada. It was seven years before I was able to get my grade five certificate, but the goal was ever present in my mind, and when the time came, my mother was able to find a violin teacher (something of a rare find in predominantly rural communities). I have sometimes wondered if I could have been a better violinist if I had started earlier, but I have played in three different orchestras and given solo performances at weddings (including one for which I was hired) so it hasn’t been a total loss, and I have never regretted continuing on with piano, which I took to grade nine (I have a grade ten certificate in violin).

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  15. On classical music ticket prices – classical music is not a lucrative field. Even superstar classical concert musicians like Isaak Perlman or Yo Yo Ma make only a fraction of the money a pop or rock superstar does. The average member of an orchestra is probably playing in at least two different orchestras or music ensembles and teaching on the side, all in order to make a living. If ticket prices rise steeply, it is likely something changed, such as a new director who wanted to make the orchestra profitable, or because the venue raised its rent.

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  16. see Peter ruled out classical music performances as being concerts,

    You’re right, Roscuro, as usual. But I never said that. Though they were called “Concert in the Park” it was more like a festival, with lawn chairs or blankets for seating in the grass. And since Arizona doesn’t have chiggers and ticks, we sat on the grass.

    When I read the original post asking the question, I presumed it was supposed to be concerts in an auditorium or arena. Of course, the 5th Dimension concert was at the U of A football stadium, but the audience was seated in stands with the stage on the field.

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  17. On classical concerts (in a concert hall or indoor venue) I have been to several, as some friends played in the youth orchestra in Tucson. Plus, my two oldest siblings were in their high school concert band, so we went to those. So I guess my first concert would have been then, when I was a mere lad of 8 years old.

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  18. The first concert in which I saw a full orchestra in performance was in my early teen years. The city where the church that my mother’s family attended was had a symphony orchestra that rented the church for performances, and they put on a themed concert called ‘Jewish Heritage’, performing music written by or made famous by Jewish musicians, and the music included themes from ‘Schindler’s List’ and Leonard Bernstein’s ‘Symphonic Dances’ from West Side Story [Whenever anyone tells me they hate classical music, I enquire if they liked the theme from a given film (usually one they said was their favorite). When they reply yes, I reply that they actually do like classical music, since the vast majority of film music (whether Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, etc.) is classical music, composed using classical music techniques and performed by classical musicians]. My most vivid memory of that concert was how exciting an orchestra was to watch in performance; there are so many musicians, each doing something different, that you never run out of things to see:

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  19. I have to correct myself. Not all classical music audiences stay in their seats. This is an orchestra in Venezuela performing the same piece as the link I shared above, Bernstein’s ‘Mambo’ for his Symphonic Dances from West Side Story. Judging from this, classical music is very much alive in Latin America:

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  20. I agree, Peter. I did sit still through the performance of the Symphonic Dances, but it was because I was mesmerized, enthralled with what I was seeing and hearing. It is fascinating to reflect that ‘Mambo’ was written by a Jewish American, played on instruments originating from the Middle East and further developed in Europe, using European musical techniques and based on Latin American folk dance rhythms. Music has always been both the defining mark of cultures and also the point at which all cultures meet.

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  21. Well, depending on what definitions of concert are allowed . . .

    I’ve never attended a concert of pop music, rock, a band, etc.

    I have attended “concerts” of Christian singers (e.g., Doug Oldham, Steve Green), but not since the early to mid nineties. I’ve attended a few Handel’s Messiah and the like.

    And I have been to a few classical concerts. My favorite was probably the string quartet. All four had Stradivarius instruments–I hadn’t realized they made anything other than violins. My mom always loved violin, and my sister wanted to play, and she finally took lessons for a few years (but dropped them when she thought she wasn’t making much progress and she was beginning her family–a choice she regrets now). Well, my local classical station (in Chicago) would do fund-raisers where periodically they would tell you what dollar amount got what gift for the next two hours or such. I would decide how much I wanted to spend, and listen for something I liked. It wasn’t uncommon to get the ticket / menu price be roughly equal to the amount of the contribution. They announced the string quartet and I called my sister: “If I get these tickets, will you come to Chicago to see me and we can go together?” She said she would try to (and she managed), so I made the contribution and got the tickets for two or three months down the road.

    The concert was really lovely BUT several people in the audience were periodically coughing, enough to be distracting. (Something I haven’t experienced at any other concert.) At the end we gave them a standing ovation . . . and they played two more numbers. The best part? The coughers slipped out at the official end of the program, and we had those final two numbers the way they were supposed to sound.

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  22. I have been to many performances of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra at the concert hall at the Arts center in downtown Atlanta. I also loved seeing the gigantic Joyful Noise Homeschool band that Wesley performed in for five years (they drew students from all over Atlanta), and since we are near Emory, we have been to a number of classical concerts there, too. Wesley’s Scout Master at one time was a volunteer with the Emory Arts so she got us in for awhile. We have seen some wonderful Celtic Christmas concerts there, too.

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  23. Concerts: DC Talk, Newsboys, Audio Adrenaline, Michael W. Smith, The Archers, Five Iron Frenzy, BarlowGirl, Jars of Clay, Delirious, Tree63, Rebecca St. James, Tim Neufeld and the Glory Boys, Third Day, Casting Crowns, Mercy Me, Megamouth (son’s high school band), Riley Armstrong, Big Daddy Weave, Kutless, TobyMac, Bowker Brothers, Skillet, Thousand Foot Crutch, Phil Keaggy, Sonic Flood, Robin Mark, Lincoln Brewster, Starfield, Ozark Mountain Dare Devils,Relient K, the Katinas, The Imperials, Petra, Paul Baloche, Sanctus Real, and so many more.

    I think my favourite was Michael W. Smith’s first Christmas tour. Just enthralling. Husband wished he had ears like Prince Charles so that he could take in even more. πŸ™‚ I’m glad he doesn’t have ears like that.

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  24. Talked to a cousin from my mom’s side who’s in MO. He’s 10 years older than I am but lost his wife a few years ago and seems pretty lonesome these days. (She was ‘older’ when they married and already had kids so they had no children of their own together — and hers apparently don’t keep in touch with him 😦 ).

    Anyway, he’s trying to find his nieces (his deceased sister’s children) whom I also have lost track of — they were in the Sacramento/Stockton area of California last either of us knew — so I said I’d try to track them down, provided I can at least find their last names (or at least the last names they had when I was in touch with them last, probably 15 years ago).

    We started talking about the little house in El Segundo he grew up in — it’s now worth $1.5 million (!). Sheesh. His mom should have hung on to that but when she lost her husband unexpectedly in 1968 she up and sold it, despite her kids, my mom and other family members trying to talk her out of it.

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  25. The house has been expanded and renovated since they had it, of course, but still. It used to be under 900 square feet, only 2 bedrooms, 1 bath (they were a family of 5 when they lived in it in the ’50s-’60s). When she sold it in ’68 after her husband died, she got $30,000+ something for it, my cousin said. But that was a nice chunk of money back in those days.

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  26. Still looks much the same on the outside, but the floor plan, while also somewhat the same, really was expanded (looks like the house was doubled in square footage in the late 1980s) and prettied/fancied up. I’ll have to ask him what the house was painted on the outside when he lived there, I’m think it was also white back then.

    The kitchen looks new, and with pink cabinets? Uh-uh.

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  27. Wow, Donna! What a lovely house! It’s not for the elderly folks, though.

    Kare gets the prize for Christian concerts attended. Another, Wow! I guess all the artists like to visit Canada. You may have even seen the pastor at my church when he tours with Casting Crowns as their manager.

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  28. Have any of you seen the documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor about Fred Rogers? It was in theaters for a while, and has been on PBS lately. I saw it a few days ago, and enjoyed it.

    By the time my mom heard about Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, I was too old for the show. But I watched it with my girls when they were little, and we all loved him.

    Some people have claimed that he is to blame for young people feeling “entitled”, because he told children that they were special, and that he liked them just the way they were. That is quite a stretch. His show was much more than that, and he had a deep understanding of children’s feelings and fears. One of his songs was about being able to control “the mad you feel”, teaching children that they can stop themselves from doing bad things when they are angry.

    I remember smiling when he went to a restaurant to show children what to expect, and he mentioned that if “you have to go” they have restrooms. That is something a little kid might worry about that an adult might not think to mention. πŸ™‚

    Turns out that Fred Rogers did not have a great childhood, and was a chubby kid for a while. Someone in the documentary said that maybe if there hadn’t been a “Fat Freddy” there may not have been a Mr. Rogers.

    You may know that he was an ordained Presbyterian minister.

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  29. The weather is perfect here today. We are scheduled to have horrible rains beginning on Tues., the day of my surgery. Up to 5 or 6 inches is predicted red. I will have to pray the house through that while I am recouperating..

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  30. Red? Not sure why the phone put that in. It’s one inch of rain Tues., 2 for Wed., 2 for Thurs. and then it will go back down. I will pray for the wind to take it elsewhere or for God to strengthen the house.

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  31. Kizzie, we went to see that here in Atlanta when Wesley was home. It was very good. We did not watch Mr. Rogers when Wesley was young. It seemed too slow paced to me, but now I get it. We did not watch much television, but occasionally watched Sesame Street and Thomas the Tank Engine.

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  32. Looking at a website for a local health spa, I snickered a bit at one statement. It says that they “. . .help you achieve your health, beauty and stress reduction goals.”

    Maybe it’s the lack of an Oxford comma, but to me, that word “reduction” is also attached to “health” and “beauty”. For example, an exterminator might say, “We specialize in flea, ant, and cockroach eradication.”

    When I find myself writing a sentence like that, I move the words around to avoid confusion. In this case, I would have written, “. . .help you achieve your stress reduction, health, and beauty goals.” Of course, I realize that people know instinctively what the sentence really means, but I still thought it was funny to read it the way I did.

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  33. I have done most all the laundry. As of Tues. I will be unable to lift the laundry baskets again. I am trying to take care of things up front this time around. I have my grabber ready, too, so that will make life easier. Thanks, Donna.

    Earlier I had a grapefruit I got from Sprouts. It had more seeds than I have ever seen. Each section seemed to have four to six seeds. Usually they have one or none. By the end I had enough seeds to plant a grove. I hope the other five I bought are not like that.

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  34. Okay, one more thing (at least for now). Have any of you seen the 1967 movie To Sir, With Love? I’d seen it a couple times in the past, but hadn’t seen it probably in about three decades. It was recently on the Hartford PBS station, which often plays older movies on Saturday nights. I recorded it last Saturday night, and watched it today.

    The teacher’s decision to ditch normal teaching methods, to treat the “kids” like adults and encourage them to treat themselves and each other the same way, reminded me of Mumsee’s philosophy about teenagers. I was telling Nightingale about the story, and we both said that many of today’s adults need someone to teach them to be and act like adults. (And no, that doesn’t just go for the much-maligned millennials).

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  35. Yeah, I certainly could use some beauty reduction. And I stress all the time over my exceptional beauty. Not!
    Good catch, Karen.

    Kare, I think I can speak for all the ladies. We are all glad our husbands do not have Prince Charles style ears!

    Y’all are being too funny today.

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  36. Roscuro, yes, I have been to classical concerts and I have been able to sit through all of them. The same for most of the country concerts I have attended.

    We brought our young children to a recital at a local college. It was our pastor’s son, I believe. I didn’t think much of it, but the pastor later told me when he saw me walk in with the two young children, that he was sure that was a mistake. He feared they would get bored and act up. That did not happen. I suppose you have to know your children and also teach them how to behave.

    I have been able to attend quite a few country concerts for free and some with back stage privileges. This was courtesy of my husband and daughter mostly who won the tickets by performing themselves. Those days are over, but we have a whole lot of music in our lives, so I cannot complain.

    Yesterday we were at one of the area nursing homes again. My husband played music with two others from his jam. They often have eight more, but for some reason several had gone down south on vacation. One or two were not feeling well. The three who went did just fine. One had just gotten over a cold and was challenged with some hoarseness, but could still sing. Who knows how long they will be able to do this? Each time is a blessing.

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  37. I saw the film on Mr. Rogers. It was interesting. We went to The Green Book the other evening. It had a lot of bad language, but was an interesting story. We enjoyed it.

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  38. Kizzie, I think I saw it a long time ago, but don’t remember much about it. I believe that Scouting instills those type of skills that lead to responsible adulting. It was very helpful for Wesley to earn those Merit Badges, learn responsibility as a leader in his troop, and to plan and finish his Eagle project. The guys in his troop even had to plan their formal Court of Honor (social event) when they made Eagle Scout.

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  39. I do wonder if there’s an easier way inside the house now, some kind of back entry? The garage is attached, perhaps that provides a more gradual lift into the house. The stairs were red when I was a kid. And of course my house now also sets up off the sidewalk and has steps, maybe not as many as my relatives’ home in that link, but enough that now I prefer going in the back gate where it’s all level, especially with groceries.

    “To Sir With Love” was very popular, I was in high school when that came out. 1968? We loved the film and the song, which was popular on the radio also; we all had the 45.

    It’s a gorgeous day here, sunny with big white puffy clouds, 59 degrees. We may get more rain tomorrow.

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  40. Just remembered something else I was gonna tell y’all. A couple mornings ago, Nightingale checked her mail (from the day before) after seeing The Boy off to school on the school bus. There was a handwritten note in her mailbox that said, “Good luck, you fat [really bad word].”

    Nightingale was more amused than anything, wondering who could have done that. She showed our neighbor Denise, who was also out at the bus stop, and jokingly asked her if she had put that in there. Denise said it was probably meant for her, since she had called the cops on our former across-the-lane neighbor, Melissa (not her real name). Denise had seen Melissa trying to break into her old house, which has been foreclosed on, and reported it to the police.

    I just hope nothing else, other than her actual mail, ends up in Nightingale’s mailbox.

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  41. This is a link to the band Wesley attended for five years. The woman who started it as her ministry and her family are PCA people. What a blessed ministry it is in Atlanta. This info says they serve 150 families but that includes many lsrge fsmilies of five or more children. Wesley was in the jazz band, woodwind ensemble, and regular orchestra by the end. It took about 45 minutes to an hour to get there on Fridays. One year we carpooled after I got a more reliable car. That was what took up most of every Friday back then. Now he never plays that expensive clarinet.

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  42. DJ for that price I would rather buy a large parcel of Midwest pasture land and build a bigger house on it.

    As for Christian concerts, yes, Kare listed quite a few. I can’t remember all the ones I went to in Tucson, but then, I rarely had to pay to get in, as I worked with a man who brought in several artists for concerts, including the Downings, Andre Crouch and the Archers. And the large church I attended sponsored concerts as well, and refused to charge admission. Instead, the groups agreed to take an offering, and probably got more that way. One was the 2nd Chapter of Acts. The pastor thought there would be a few hundred people come, but around 2,000 showed up in a building with seating for 1,400. Keith Green also performed there a couple of times.

    Once, in 1978, some friends and I drove to Phoenix for an Evie concert at a place that had a revolving stage. Does Cheryl remember that place?

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  43. But for that price you could probably by an entire Midwest state

    Not really. There are two or three $1M houses here in Hannibal along the river. One of those would be my second choice.

    But there is a small county in NW Missouri that might sell for that price. It was almost bankrupt back in the 80s, and there are only about 2,000 or so residents in it.

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  44. I know that big brother, but those are the places I know of with revolving what cha ma call its and Cheryl did not answer. Just giving my valuable opinion.

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  45. We have freezing rain here, so we won’t be able to get out to church until the evening service. 😦

    New photo: This one demands a caption. My husband and I both captioned it already (going very different directions), but I won’t bias you and give ours until you’ve had a chance.

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  46. Church cancelled due to ice on top of snow for the second week in a row. Can’t say I really mind, as I don’t have much energy. Yesterday we went to see “They Shall Not Grow Old” because I had read so many good reviews about it. I’m sure it is a really good movie, but I my stomach started feeling queasy and got worse as the movie continued until by the end I was leaning on the empty seat next to mine and occasionally looking up at the screen. I thought I was going to be OK once we left but I had to have my husband pull over to the side of the road a few minutes later so I could throw up. I thought that was it but at home I couldn’t even keep down water and Tylenol and half a saltine. So far so good this morning (except for headache, hoping the Tylenol stays down this time) but I’m glad not to have to help lead worship (I was scheduled to read the Scriptures).

    On a more positive note, I’m going to a work-related conference in April. My job is primarily supporting the student information system software at the college, which means training, troubleshooting, testing new releases and changed processes, basically knowing how the system works and being able to explain it and make it and our processes work together. I went to the vendor’s annual user conference the first year I was there, in 2013, but since then there hasn’t been money in the budget to go again. I wasn’t going to even put it in my budget request for next fiscal year (starts in July), then two weeks ago I found out my supervisor’s supervisor decided she wants me to go this fiscal year and will find a way to move money from other accounts so I can go, because we just bought additional software from them and need to get it implemented in the next few months. I put together my travel budget, and it was approved the next day. So I’m going to New Orleans in April. I can’t say I really look forward to spending three days in a conference with seven to eight thousand people, but there are several promising educational sessions regarding the software I need to get up to speed on. And while I won’t have much free time to see New Orleans, I do like seeing new places.

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  47. Morning! Snow on top of ice around here and 7 degrees. The plow has been through and the sun is shining…for now. We are predicted to get 5-7 inches of new snow from tonight into Tuesday morning…we may be in for a little while.
    Cheryl when I saw the photo my first thought β€œwhy is everyone ignoring me…all I wanted was a hug”!!! πŸ¦† πŸ€—

    Liked by 3 people

  48. Nancy Jill, my photo caption was “You might have wondered why I called this meeting . . . Hey, hey, listen up, guys. The meeting is in session!”

    My husband’s was the other ducks saying, “Yuck, that deodorant is NOT working–put your arms down!”

    Liked by 1 person

  49. Oh Cheryl I did think that same thought as your husband…one duck’s head is in the water and the others have their beaks buried in their feathers…something stinky happening around here..someone forgot their deodorant !! πŸ˜‚

    Liked by 1 person

  50. I watched the early church service and part of the second on on Facebook Live. During that time Karen called because she is sick. I prayed for her. She will not have her heart procedure tomorrow. She had to get off the phone, But she soon called back. I don’t know anything else to say or do for her.

    Liked by 2 people

  51. Janice, you’re such a good friend to her, I’m sure it’s a great support just to have you to talk to — even if all you do is listen.

    Good day at church except …

    A member (and someone whom I’d been kind of special friends with but hadn’t linked up with lately) was excommunicated. It left several of us in tears even though we knew it was probably coming. Several months ago she decided she was returning to her family’s Jewish faith, telling the elders she no longer believed Jesus was the Messiah or that the New Testament was the Word of God.

    That led to a conversation between me and the woman whose family has sat in front of me for so many years (they have 5 children, all now young adults) who told me that a couple of her sons may be next as they’ve renounced the faith. Her husband has been an elder there but currently is not one — she said they’ve expected something to be said to them at some point but so far they haven’t been approached. It also made me realize how hard this must be for our elders who have known and loved these families personally to have to deal with this.

    Anyway, all very sad but it’s not over yet and I’m hoping that in the case of the one woman that she’ll be back in the fold someday.

    Liked by 4 people

  52. Janice, I liked the points your pastor made about understanding the “neighborhood” when we are witnessing … and the importance of talking about God, not “us.” πŸ™‚

    ___________

    Kind of related, in a one-on-one relationship discussing issues, our pastor also stresses that people should (ideally) know we love them, that we’re on “their side, we’re their cheerleader” when it comes to expressing what is perhaps a very different of opinion on issues such as abortion (which came up in our SS hour today).

    Our point isn’t to win an argument, but to bring them to a place where they “discover” the truth on their own.

    Like

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