Monday, August 29, 2011

Kid Games

This post falls under the "Boomers" part of my blog. I can't believe I've done two years plus and haven't tackled the topic yet.

Well, I had a fantastic childhood. We went outside and played all the time. One game I loved was called 7 UP. You would take a large rubber ball and throw it up against the wall and catch it 7 times. Then you had 6s. Here, you let the ball bounce before you caught it. Each number had a different activity. The thing you only had to do once was: throw the ball to the wall, turn around and let it bounce, push it up against the wall and catch it. If you missed on any activity, you had to start over at 7s. I got so I could do it perfectly. I must say it took a lot of time. I also did the same thing with a small India rubber ball that I held in one hand - a game called 12 UP. Here the throws were much more difficult. I managed to do a few perfect ones. This game taught me something, I'm not sure what.

My favorite indoor game was Jacks. We had these nice heavy steel jacks. They don't make them anymore. You have a little ball and go from picking up one at a time to all 10 at once. I loved the way the jacks swept away into my hand on the linoleum floor. I could also do all ten here, but playing with a partner, I usually lost. Jacks was very competitive in my day.

We had a game called Spud. "It" threw the ball into the air and called "freeze." Then he took three steps toward the nearest person and threw a large rubber ball at them. If it hit them, they were "it" and got a letter "S." If they caught the ball, the thrower got the "S." The last person to get SPUD was the winner.

We also played jump rope across a street that had hardly any traffic. We held the ends while the big kids jot to jump. Our mom said not to play with the big kids if they acted that way, but we always did. We got very few turns, just enough to keep us going.

Hopscotch was another game where the big kids ruled. If we ever finished a set, we were doing great.

The last game I want to share about is Hide And Seek. We played this outside, just we little kids and got so dirty. I remember the feel of the long days turning to evenings and the smell of the "toils of the day." We slept well after our great warm baths.
How I long for those days, when just a few little materials could last us all summer. Did you play any cheap kid games? I bet it was memorable.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Me...ffom A to Z.

I got this cute idea from Diane Estrella over at She does great book reviews, especially for young people, has handy tips, and good giveaways. Diane encouraged us to have fun with this.

A. age: 64

B. baked goods: coconut cream pie

C. Chore you hate: I hate cleaning that plastic shower of mine. Scrub, scrub, scrub - yuck.

D. Dogs. I had a cute mixed breed named Buffy when I was a little girl. Then we got an ugly dog names Irving. Now we have no dogs.

E. Essential start to your day: I always make my bed. First chore, always.

F. Favorite color: blue, blue, and oh um blue.

G. Gold or Silver: I like gold in the winter and silver in the summer.

H. Height: 5'2". I'm too short to get the coffee cups in most cupboards.

I. Instruments you play. I used to play piano. My students loved my marches. They were just chords mixed up.

J. Job. I take care of my adorable grandson, Ty.

K. Kids. Joseph and wife Sandra, 35, Benjamin 31 and his wife Rebekah 30, Dawn 27 and her husband Dave 36, and grandson Ty 2.

L. Live. I like in Michigan. I was born in Ohio.

M. Mother. Lillian

N. Nickname. Never had a nickname until recently. I can be Nan or Nance.

O. Overnight hospital stays. I've had three - one for each of my childdren.

P. Pet peeve. The worst one - not putting paper etc in the garbace cans. I also hate spitting.

Q. Quote. "This is the hour of the Shire-folk, when they arise from their quiet fields to shake the towers and counsels of the Great. Who of all the Wise could have forseen it?" from The Lord Of The Rings, The Fellowship Of The Ring. by J.R.R.Tolkien. That book has so many great quotes. It was hard to choose just one.

R. Right or left? Right

S. Siblings. An older sister and a younger sister.

T. Time you wake up. I wake at 6:30 to work, 9:00 on off days, and 8:30 for church.

U. University you attended. Bowling Green State University - that's in Ohio.

V. Vegetable you dislike. I dislike very much asparagus, broccoli (cooked), brussel sprouts, and peppers, all kinds.

W. What makes you late? I am almost never late. I am almost at least 10 minutes early. If I am late it is because I had to do a new activity beforehand and didn't know how long it would take. I think it is rude to be late.

X. X-rays. Just had a chest X-ray. I don't like them very much. Do you?

Y. Yummy food. Well, I love pizza, fries, and mac and cheese. Also, love, love, love corn on the cob. (I never eat it anywhere except at home because it's too messy and gets in my teeth.)

Z. Zoo animal favorite. My favorite is the bird house. I can make bird noises and once startled the birds at the Toledo zoo with my fine initation.

Now you know me from A to Z. Have a great day.

Monday, August 22, 2011

I Have Calmed My Soul

King David said, "Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with his mother." Psalm 131:2 NKJ

I have read that scripture so many times, letting it sooth me and picturing a tiny baby, safe in his mother's arms. Then one day, I noticed the word "weaned." I think I had been picturing an infant. The image changed for me in an important way. Children in the Bible probably weren't weaned until they were about two or perhaps a bit younger. But this verse says "child." Why was he supposed to bring such comfort as apposed to the baby I had imagined?

The weaned child no longer goes to the mother for nourishment. He goes because he wants to be in his mother's arms for love and and strength and assurance. He has a bit of independence and yet knows right where to go to calm his soul.

We believers had been given nourishment quite easily as new Christians when He gave us such grace and favor like the new babes that we were. Now we are weaned. With the Bible and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we can get nourishment from these sources as we grow to be mature adults in Christ. How great that even as we grow, we can go back to the Lord for comfort as the weaned child did, as David did.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Little Help Getting Started

For some time, I have been have trouble getting started in my prayers. I don't mean the quick ones I pray when I think of someone. I mean the kind where you sit in a comfortable chair and pray for some time. My Bible has always been easy to pick up and read. I enjoy fresh insights every time. And I love to talk to God and let Him talk to me, but it has been so difficult jumping in.

Well, when I was cleaning, I ran across a list, The names of God. You can find these easily on the Internet as well. The ones I found were: Jehovah Nissi - The Lord My Banner, Jehovah Rapha - The Lord That Heals, Jehovah Shammah - The Lord Who Is There, Jehovah Tsidkenu - The Lord My Righteousness, Jehovah Jireh- The Lord Will Provide, Jehovah Shalom - The Lord My Peace, and Jehovah Raah - The Lord My Shepherd.

One day, I just read these names and thought about each one. Then I praised God for some other names I knew and soon, I was getting into his attributes. By this time, I had passed from that first initial wall into a wonderful time of praise.

Now, I start with greeting my Father and the Godhead. I may thank Him briefly for the good things of the day, and move into the names I listed and the others. Then, it is so easy to move into prayer for those on my list because we are already in the heavenlies having a wonderful conversation together.
Perhaps you don't have the problem I had. Even so, the Names are a great way to add joy, praise, and comfort to your prayers. Blessings on this beautiful day.

Friday, August 12, 2011

It's All Done!

Done! I got my house cleaned one week early. I had one more big room to do and just couldn't let a small room and a closet go till next week. So I rushed and finished all three in a little over three hours. I have been sorting like mad. So far, I think I have been able to get rid of 1/2 to 1/3 of the paperwork. What a relief. I still have at least eight more folders, files, and notebook type things to do. I can do these on the weekends, at odd moments and on days when I have a few hours off.

It seems like a lot of my readers are unplugged, at conferences, or busy. So I'll leave it at that for now. See you next week with a new idea for prayer. Have a great weekend.

Oh, we are going to Tennessee (eight hours each way) to see our daughter off. That should be tiring and fun.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

City Mouse, Country Mouse

I was recently looking over the cute story of The City Mouse and The Country Mouse. In that story, the little old-fashioned mouse gets bored and leaves her home to travel to the city to visit a relative who lives there. She is delighted and envious until a big cat spoils the party and she hurries home, glad for her quiet life.

I thought a lot about that story. People who know me would probably say that I prefer the country. I was raised on a farm in Ohio. Well, I wasn't really, I only visited my grandparents so often that if feels like I did grow up there. Oh, it has its charms, the rolling fields and the fall woods. I loved all of the animals. The sheep, pigs, chickens, kittens, and cows. One time in the winter, I petted a cow and her rough tongue pulled my mitten off. What a giggle that was.

Other people who know me would know that I love big cities, too. I have been to New York City at least four times and I love it. On various trips, I visited the lights of Times Square, saw a Broadway show, twice visited the Statue Of Liberty, rode up in the Umpire State Building, ministered to the homeless in Harlem, and was part of a peace rally. I know the "cat" is there. We saw him messing with the poor people in the soup kitchens and on the street. But I still love the energy and opportunities of the city.

Other cities I have visited and enjoyed very much were: Paris,Vancouver, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Boston, and Cleveland, Ohio. So how about you? Are you a City Mouse, or a Country Mouse? Or, are you like me, a person who enjoys the blessings of both?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Nerd Games

It used to be that when my family all get together, after dinner we would play games. The games popular then were interactive games like Taboo, Balderdash, Pictionary, Apples and Oranges, Catch Phrase, etc. I love these and all of the trivia games. I'm pretty good at them, too. Lately a trend has started. Nerd Games.

First my second son Ben got a few and then My son Joe. Soon, their spouses were putting up with them and we would all play after eating. Now, my daughter has caught the bug and her husband. She is asking where to buy them. They are very expensive.

If you are not familiar with this term, I'll try to describe it. You get a board and pieces, but not like the ones in Parcheesi. These moving pieces are "cute." If they aren't, you can buy extra ones that are. The goal of most of the games is either to get the most money or to get the most territory, in one form or another.

Now in my own defense, I tried to play these games. I even won once. Well, I thought I did. Everyone cheered for me, but then when the money was counted I had lost by a few dollars. You need strategy. You need to think for a very long time. That you have lots of since, with 4 or 5 players or more, you don't get your turn for say 15 to 20 minutes. You think up a great scheme and the guy ahead of you makes a move that throws you off and you have to do something quick. It looks like you were just sitting there twiddling your thumbs.

I can see why the kids like them. They have clear thinking and they can plot and plan. I don't do that very well anymore. I can think of a quick answer to some obscure fact in a hurry, but that doesn't count here. No, I just let them play and go get my grandson and a big pile of blocks and we make a city. Lots more fun.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Always Good

While I'm still having fun cleaning, I feel it only fair to tell you of the more difficult things as well. First, more good things. My daughter just got a teaching job in Tennessee. So she and her husband will be moving away from us. This is a great opportunity for both of them. That helps when I think of how I am going to "lose" my daughter, shopping buddy, and best friend. I also will be getting some money that I had not anticipated. I had two medical tests which showed normal health for me in those areas.

I gave a praise report at church because I believe it is important to give God credit and it also encourages others who are struggling to see how faithful He is.

Now I am in my third week of cleaning. I did my files and managed to discard at least 1/2 of the paperwork. The less than fun part happened today. The first time I did my curtains I managed to take the curtains off, wash them, and put them back on. I couldn't find a snap to release the curtains so I unscrewed the ends. What a pain. Well, when I did that today, the whole rod broke at one end. Then I realized there was a release mechanism, the other one just didn't work. So I struggled to tape the rod to the holders. I tried several times. Finally I had success. This is only a temporary measure, I will get a new rod. But I thought I was big stuff when I did the curtains the first time. I am humbled. I also may have to go to a doctor's again to check on something. Bummer. I thought I was done "doctoring" for the year. Yet, you know what? I have recently realized again how loving and good and generous and awesome God is. He has made me promises and I believe them. I just rest in His love.

Hope this is a good day for you. If not, I know tomorrow will be better.