Ten Years Ago

I take opportunities to teach the Gospel whenever I can. Every year stick on decorations are made for sliding glass doors, etc. I had one I used for several years for our Grandkids to play with. They could arrange and re-arrange the pieces if they wanted to. 

One year I picked up our youngest Grandgirl from nursery school and brought her home for lunch at our house. They had been learning about farms and farm animals. Old MacDonald was a new favorite song for singing in the car.

As she was eating her lunch she looked at the sliding glass door. 

“Look Grammy, there’s Jesus,  right in that barn!”

What a joy to have young’uns among us!

Lord, help me always to see with the eyes of a child. Help me celebrate You right in that barn and in my dining room! 

Another Christmas Memory

The particular winter I am thinking about was approximately twelve years ago. It had been a windy autumn, more wind than usual. One neighbor had begun to decorate for Christmas. In their tradition, the Jesus baby was not put out until Christmas Day. 

As we drove down the street, our oldest Grandgirl, then about five years old, noticed the figures. She said a classic line!

“I see Mary, and I see Joseph. I guess Jesus blowed away!”

We have mentioned her comment every year since. Such innocence and astute observation! If you can’t find Him, perhaps you can explain His absence?

May you know an increased awareness of Christ this season and throughout the coming year! Blessings to you.

“I see Mary, and I see Joseph. I guess Jesus blowed away!”

Wind Chill 17

This morning the wind chill was 17 degrees. That is just plain COLD.

As the first salt truck of the year goes down our street, I thought it might be fun to show you the photos I took on our favorite walk last September. Enjoy! and remember seasons change. This weather, too , will pass.

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View from above Harsha Lake, better known around here as East Fork.

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Kentucky or Ireland?

While traveling in Ireland we saw these rock walls over and over in almost every county we visited. The labor alone to build one of these boggled my mind. Evidently the practice was to take the stones from the fields and build border fences. I cannot imagine being that strong!

If you have ever driven through Kentucky you might have encountered a creation such as this!

Ky not Ireland 1In Ireland we thought of Kentucky! Guess my Grandmother Macdonald’s family brought their practices with them!

Halloween

Now I know, some of you are opposed to any Halloween celebration of any kind. But let me just tell you about my Halloween trick or treating growing up! We never had any evil attached to October 31. It was just a day to collect free candy. Our focus was upon Hershey’s and Mars and any other sugary item available to us.

I have a fond memory of my Dad buying me this product

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for you see, Halloween is the day BEFORE MY BIRTHDAY!! So one year this was my treat to share with the class. Had to be elementary school because he died before I went to middle school.

It wasn’t until I grew older that I realized I could tell the people who were passing out the candy “Tomorrow is my birthday!” And

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They would usually give me extra candy. What is not to like about that? And the best part is it was a true statement 🙂

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Of course, we did not have plastic pumpkins in the 1960s. Just grabbed one of mom’s pillowcases ( with permission) and hit as many doors as possible.

Be sure to brush your teeth after you sort the kids’ candy and choose your favorites! Just sayin’!!

Love, The Birthday Girl

 

 

Missing my Dog!

Strolling © 2011 Molly Lin Dutina

Strolling down the street today with the dog
a north wind came to refresh our part of the earth
and summer
gave way
to autumn

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Instead of humid stillness packed
with dense air you could almost “see”
we were graced
with cool breezes
puffs of refreshment

And I found myself in the path of
one hundred
thousand
golden
falling
leaves

Thank you north wind for sharing the locust shower
Praise You , Lord, for the joy of changing seasons

Dojo’s Kisses

Our hallway is adorned with family photos showing four generations. Both sets of our parents, Bob and I, our children with their children and our son-in-law. One afternoon in 2014 when the light was just right I noticed the glass over the photo of my daughter’s family was smudged. On closer inspection I found kiss marks over each face.

I remembered on a recent visit our youngest Grandgirl had been going into the bathroom often to apply her new lip balm that had slight color in it. I am certain she adorned the photo of her family! I did not “clean” the glass. It’s a blessed testament of love.

When we recently updated the family photos I asked my husband to be certain NOT to wash the glass. He did better than that! He bought a new frame for the new photo and let me keep old photo with kisses. I love that man!

Ellie kisses special

Ask Y or Yield?

Many years ago when faced with the fibromyalgia health situation I realized I had the opportunity to ask “WHY?” or to become a Y – yielded to God in the circumstance. Thus began my observation of Yield signs. This one in Ireland brought me up short as I do not read or speak Gaelic, yet I knew exactly what it meant!

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Yes those signs are all around us! Yield can be defined as to concede, surrender or relinquish; to surrender voluntarily one’s right, privilege, etc. In that time of deciding whether to just ask Why or become a Y,  I often read where others had asked God, “Why me?” and often the response was “Why not you? Who better?”

To become a Y I needed to release my judgement of the situation and raise my hands in surrender to God. I had to yield to my Savior and my God.

In 1993 I came across a cartoon called 9 Chickweed Lane. I will just describe it to you because if would cost me $35 to place it in this blog! Frame 1: This guy is walking along. Frame 2: He comes upon a sign. Frame 3: He stops to read it; it is a yield sign. Frame 4: He drops to one knee and bows. That is how I try to respond now when I see a Yield sign. God knows I need object lessons to keep me on track! So each time I see

yield

 

I try to remember to bend the knee of my heart and bow to the Trinity.

 

God has always been with me regarding the fibro. I had the opportunity to create and run a support group for a number of years at a local hospital. The diagnosis has opened many opportunities to encourage other people with the same diagnosis to press on and find their best self as they travel through and with the experience. We have each had to learn how to yield when there is a symptom flare up. I even wrote a talk on how to have a flare with flair!

The next time you are faced with a situation where you begin to ask why, consider becoming a Y and see where that leads. As my mother used to sing, “You’ll never walk alone!”

 

Wowsers!

img373Forty eight years ago today I married the absolute love of my life! We had no idea what the future held, but we have been determined to do the future together!

img389We went from a wedding in Live Oak Park, (where we had to break up the Saturday morning football game for the ceremony to take place) to a reception with cake, champagne and beer at a hotel, to an overnight honeymoon out of town so the family from Ohio would go home. Then we were back to classes for Bob and back to work for me.

Now two children, three grandchildren and forty eight years later, we are still celebrating our love! No longer spring chickens in the park, but happier than ever!Cowles-2266I love you dearly, my sweet husband. May we be graced with many more years of happiness in plain sight, with you cracking jokes continuously and you rarely laughing at my jokes!

 

This Phase is Over

I wrote this for a friend when children were off to primary school. Her youngest was graduating from high school. Delivered it with a bag of chocolate kisses!
To Betty L. © 84-5-21 Molly Lin Dutina

Suddenly, this phase is  over
And the time we said we were
Looking forward to has come to call.

Oh, of course, “I expected it’s coming
And I vaguely made plans for the day
I could idle in my fancy.
But all that was with a change of pace in mind
And now it is here.
To stay.”

We’re much the same, you know,
At this form-in-the-road time of life
Here we waited, planned and sort of hoped
Now it’s here …
Oh, but where did the other go?

I had ideas what it would be like,
But this is unexpected:

You greeting men you knew as children,
I seeing children I knew as babies.
Who are they now?
What next?
Suddenly all is changed.

I was more flexible then.
Not with a vain fancy over
My body.
I was just thinner then.

We looked to this time
…during car pools and
Disciplinary arguments
… over dirty diapers and
sloppy food messes.
Now it’s here.

I guess as always, we shall lean on the Word
“Stand at the crossroads and ask for the
Ancient paths, where the good way is,
and walk in it and find rest for our
souls.” Jeremiah 6:16
For our flesh has always failed us
And He alone knows our needs and
Supplies our peace and rest.

Like chocolate,
which cannot be held
and digested but seems to be
tasted before it touches the lips; so,
the past and the future have a way of
mingling and yet remaining distinct.

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It seems impossible
That we may know so many varying experiences
To such intensity in a relatively short span
Of time with the same people.

Lord, we thank You for the richness
Of our lives. Please forgive us our
Bitter-sweet lamenting.
You have promised a future ever-brighter,
So, we yield ourselves again to the light of Your Son.