Sunday, February 24, 2008

Story of Me ... Part III

Once my mother and I were back in Rhode Island it was important for my mother to establish a seemingly normal life for us. We moved into my grandmother's tenement house. Our little apartment was on the third floor. While I do not remember the incident, it has been said that either my "Nana" or my mother would bundle me up and place me in the carriage in the back yard. They would then hook a clothes line with a bell that went all the way up to the second and the third floors. That way they could leave me unattended and if I woke up or squawked the bell would ring and someone would climb down the stairs to make sure I was okay. Can't imagine anyone doing that today!

Thelma went to work at the Bulova watch company as the company nurse. I was farmed out to a wonderful older couple, Harold and Margaret Dickenson. Aunt Margaret and Uncle Harold, as I was to call them, were wonderful to me in the early years of my life. Between my Nana, my mother,Aunt Margaret and Uncle Harold, I was very much loved. Uncle Harold loved 'lawn bowling' and I vaguely remember him taking me on occasion to the old men's lawn bowling club.

My grandmother had two sisters... My aunt Dot and my aunt Edna. For reasons almost beyond my understanding, my aunt Edna and my grandmother did not speak to each other, this being due to a mantle clock which belonged to my great-grandmother. I do not remember which sister actually ended up with the clock at my great-grandmother's death, but I do know that the two never really were close after that. What a shame. My aunt Dot on the other hand was a very funny woman with many children and grand children who all lived close to one another in Central Falls, RI. This was the extended family I grew to love as a toddler.

From My List of Things to do before I turn 95...

On the list was the following item... Learn to use my DVR! I am proud to post that with help from my son Dan and my son-in-law David, I have learned to push the (duh) record button and wa la... I am at the moment recording an episode of the Tudors!
Now that was not very hard, was it? So we will take this item from the list and find another for its place!
Thank you for understanding the plight of the technology challenged!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Tricia has been listed and activated for her transplant!

As we continue to watch the Lawrenson's miracle unfold I have been thinking of this song.

"This is the air I breathe
This is the air I breathe
Your holy presence living in me

This is my daily bread
This is my daily bread
Your very word spoken to me

And I I'm desperate for you
And I I'm I'm lost without you"

As I have followed their story I am aware that their desire is about so much more than medical miracles. My faith has been challenged in new ways as I have read this young couple's walk through the 'valley of the shadow'... trust!

Join the multitudes who are praying for Tricia's transplant and the baby's complete recovery. Pray also for the future donor and family.
Visit Nate Lawrenson's blog ....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Short Term Prophet... Haggai ... the rest of the story.

When we left our prophet hero, he had just shown up to give the first of his messages. Remember we know his name means festival, or festive. Haggai would today be known as a one hit wonder. His entire ministry (as far as we are told) consisted of four messages given over the course of four months. 4 WORDS over 4 MONTHS! We know this because Haggai himself kept detailed dated entries on his blog! :)

When Haggai shows up he finds an alter built - but abandoned. He finds the beginning outline of a foundation for the rebuilding of the temple. The people tell him that is does not seem like a good time to build. Haggai tells them to get back to work! He chastises the children of Israel asking them why are they building their own houses before they build God's house.

Hmm seems like a good reminder for us! Don't give up keep working for God. Also seems like we should remember that we should proclaim when and while we can, as we never know how long we have to share.

Monday, February 18, 2008

President's Day Thoughts...

This morning I am enjoying a day off of school because we are "celebrating" George Washington's and Abraham Lincoln's birthdays. I am not sure how we celebrate our early presidents anymore - other than the big sale at Target, Wal-Mart, all the car dealerships, and well you get the picture. Can a discounted item count as a celebration of someones life? Just wondering.

So here I sit in my robe and slippers celebrating. And my thoughts are somewhat fuzzy on this! In the olden days there were parades, speeches and such. In elementary school there were big assemblies with patriotic songs and recitations. We made silouettes of their heads... using black paper and scissors. I do not recall having the day off way back then, but we did celebrate! We talked about their lives and what they had accomplished for our country. Maybe somewhere they are still doing that. I am not sure.

Now in fairness, I have been to their homes... Pres. Washington's house in VA- Mt. Vernon... and Pres. Lincoln's house in Il. I have been to both of their memorials and will go again with the junior class in a few weeks.

I stand amazed that this great union is still electing presidents in much the same way as these two men were elected.

And so today I celebrate Pres. Washington, Pres. Lincoln ,all in between and since. Today I pray for our president and for our country.

My last act of celebration today just may have to be a quick run by Target... It would perhaps be unAmerican not to do so!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

It is not to late to witness a miracle...

In case you are not yet among the million plus people who have already visited the CF Husband blog I urge you to visit and get caught up in the lives of Nate, Tricia and baby Gwyneth. If you are not instantly more of a prayer warrior, and praise giver, then at least spend some time reading about all that God has been doing in the lives of this amazing young family!

The Story of Me...Part II

Once home from her almost visit to the back street abortionist, Thelma found herself still at odds with her own mother. (Flashback: Lottie and Harry Kay had adopted Thelma as an infant after their own tragic eight failed pregnancies. The couple doted on the independent baby. To say Thelma was spoiled was an understatement. As the only child of a somewhat older couple, Thelma soon learned how to take full advantage of her position in life.)

Flash forward... So now that Thelma found herself " in the family way" Lottie was angry, humiliated and just utterly devastated. How could this brilliant child who had a full ride to Brown Univerisity offered to her, how could she do this to her mother? Letters were written between the two and torn up, they were barely speaking to each other. (The details here are a bit sketchy as this writer was not made privy to even the basics of the story until sometime around 1993.) Somewhere along the way either through the family of the baby's father, or through friends of Thelma's, plans were made for Thelma to travel to New Hampshire to spend the rest of her "confinement". When she went and where she stayed and with whom are pieced together through faded memories of hushed conversations heard long ago.

Thelma had moved in with a woman who would become the baby's god mother. ( Her name escapes me at the moment which is partly why I feel the need to have the story written down somewhere before I forget all of it!)

How long Thelma was in New Hampshire before the birth, is not exactly known, but on November 14th, 1950 little Susan Marion made her entrance into the world. How she got her name is not exactly known but Thelma's last name was Kay, the baby's father was Haggerty, but somehow, for reasons known only to Thelma, Susan's birth certifcate states her name as Susan Marion Brasse.
(Only this past Christmas did I come across a picture designed for a bathroom with the images of a mirror, comb and brush and there in French, for all to see, was the word... Brasse... so yes, my last name was hairbrush- Susan Marion Hairbrush! She later told me she made it up! I guess she did!! Ha, no wonder I have always been so partial to the Veggie Tale song " Where is My Hairbrush?"
It seems obvious that Thelma did not stay in New Hampshire long, because I spent my 1st Christmas back in Rhode Island in the attic apartment directly above my Nana's. Once Lottie got her first look at me.. all was forgiven.. I now became the golden child to both my mother and my grandmother! (to be continued)

Cowboy and Indian Days....

Just finished watching an old John Wayne western on TV and it got me to thinking... What ever happened to the carefree days of childhood? Now, I know that I am incredibly old ( at least to my high school students ). But when I was a child, it was always fun to play for hours away from the house. We would make up amazing tales of the Wild West. There were cowboys and indians and the Cavalry on horseback, of course. We would make forts in the woods and play for seemingly endless hours without anyone missing us. We made bows and arrows from twigs and sticks. We made pretend rifles from old pieces of lumber.We didn't have watches on of course, but we knew when to go home for dinner.

Grown ups did not worry about us and there was little or no fear of anyone harming us. People harming children was something that was not even in our national consciousness. When did we as a nation, or as a world, lose our innocence? When did it become almost impossible for children to play and pretend without a grown-up there to direct the play? How I long for my grand children to be able to experience the old Cowboy and Indian days of so long ago.

PS We should point out that the horse is a REAL horse only stuffed! The picture was taken at Storybook Land somewhere near Miami Florida, circa 1955! No really it is a REAL horse- posed and stuffed! ahhhhhhhh!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Unique Beginning.... The Story of Me ...Part I

In the winter of 1950 a young nursing student from Pawtucket, Rhode Island,found herself heart sick in love with a dashing young Merchant Marine from Cranston. He came from money... his parents were less than thrilled that their son was dating a mill-workers daughter. Bernard and Edith Haggerty had two sons, David Frederick and Bruce. David wined and dined the tall lovely red head. They danced at Rhodes on the Putuxet. The weeks flew by and young Thelma found herself suddenly pregnant. When she shared the news with young David, he told her that she had made her bed and now she must lie in it.
Alone and frightened she turned to her own mother. Lottie Marion Kay had been recently widowed and without Harry at her side she took the approach of most mothers in those days... she told her daughter that she would have to be sent away and give the child up for adoption. Being a nursing student the young woman was quick to find out where she could receive a back room abortion. There was no Roe V Wade back then but Illegal abortions were not that unusal . So armed with an address and a bus ticket, Thelma made the trip into Providence and on a cold early spring night she got off the bus, walked up a back alley to the address she had beeen given and climbed the stairs of the old three story tenament building. As she approached the top flight she heard a very distinct voice say, "Thelma, if you do this, then who will you have to love you?" This so shocked her that she looked around to see who had spoken. Realizing that the voice was perhaps the voice of God, she began crying and turned and walked down the stairs, back down the alley and waited quietly for the bus. (to be continued...)

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Circuit!

So I have now been to Curves twice! I have worked the circuit on my own two times and worked the circuit two times with the trainers. So my impressions... one should NOT attempt this without a sports bra! :) Especially if that one is over 50! HA!
Impression # 2 There are MANY teachers there all seemingly working off day to day frustrations from their jobs! I am not there for that purpose, but fall into that time slot I guess. I love my job but need to move more and lose weight! Impression # 3 I will also need to adjust eating habits! A box of Hot Tamales, a package of Vanilla Cream Wafers and Taco Bell will not offset a 30 minute workout!

Additionally, I have now purchased from Sam's Club a set of yoga pants, sports bras, and tank tops all made for Bally's gym- how ironic is that! So I have the gear- so here I go! I will keep you appraised of my future successes!

This should be a hoot!


Post Valentine Post

Yesterday was Valentine's Day! A day of romance and love. But this morning as I reflect on yesterday, I am keenly aware that my husband makes almost everyday like Valentine's Day. Yesterday morning he surprised me at the crack of dawn with a hysterical singing card which I loved and a box of chocolates which, I wll enjoy, but certainly do not NEED! I found him a sweet card and an itunes card for his shuffle.

But seriously, I am so spoiled. Everyday... this is a man who wakes me up (repeatedly) rubs my back, makes and serves my coffee, starts my car, carries my belongings to the car! Wow! Am I dreaming? Since we married he has spoiled me non-stop. So when Valentine's Day comes there is no need for a big hoop te do-- I beg NOT TO BE TAKEN TO DINNER! Who needs the crowds, the bad service and the inflated prices? So last night we enjoyed Taco Bell, the evening news with Charlie Gibson, Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune, just like most every other night! Now THAT is Valentine's Day for me! I love you Garey!

PS.. This morning he is having a biopsy taken of his tongue. So if you would like to pray that would be most appreciated!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Short Term Prophet...

In the morning I have been asked to give the devotions to the staff at the Christian school where I teach. My assigned topic is on the prophet Haggai. I have learned so much from my study of this minor prophet. Haggai is one of the Bible characters about whom we are not given much background. His name means festive or festival! He was part of the prophet team of Malachi, Zachariah and Haggai. His entire ministry took place with four months, and four messages. WE know he was a detail man as he dated everyone of his prophesies.

Haggai comes into the middle of a mess. The Jews were coming back from exile. Cyrus had allowed some to leave captivity- he sent them with wood to rebuild the temple. SO the children of Israel go back to Jerusalem they are all happy- we're free we have the lumber from Home Depot or Lowes . They build an altar, the lay out a foundation and then they start to have trouble with the neighbors. ( The Samaritans ) They were having trouble with some of the decrees of government.. so like many of us they laid back... they stopped showing up at the job sight. Then they started to borrow the special temple lumber and they start building their own houses and they have forgotten the temple of God. So in comes Haggai... Da da da DA!!

The first thing the people say to Him is "Ah, we don't think it is the time to build right now!"


So basically that is the start of my message, and as I am just a woman... I will be speaking ... not preaching! :)

Monday, February 11, 2008

A New Beginning Again

Today I joined Curves! I joined, paid my money and must now wait until Wednesday to get my first official tour of the little circle of machines! Now it has been 15 or more years since I have joined a gym. And why have I taken this jump? Because my youngest daughter is getting married in July. July! I just found out two weeks ago and now believe I need to slim down and tone up and well anything I can do to not look like the grandmother of bride!

So I have screwed up my courage, signed on the dotted line and joined a pinky lavendar gym! I cannot believe I did this,,, here goes!

I will let you know on Wednesday how it went!

Is it really possible to lose 20 lbs in 5 months?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A matter of perspective

On any given day it is our perspective which colors our world. Through which lens will we see our world today? Today is Super Tuesday... voters are casting their votes in 22 state primaries today. But here in NC we do not have a primary until May 6th and so today my voter perspective is a different shade than that of those who will be voting today.

Monday, February 4, 2008

One leader, many followers

At the risk of sounding like Andy Rooney of 60 minutes fame... Have you ever wondered why some people will follow a religious leader almost anywhere? Have you noticed that people are willing to place themselves in harms way to follow without question? Now there is certainly safety in numbers and if I were being led into the desert I would certainly not want to be alone, but why do we give up our minds and our sense of disernment to at times follow a man instead of following the Good Shepherd? Just wondering...

One woman,one book, one Sunday afternoon...

As I place my first blog into cyber space I want to recommend a book: The Shack by William P. Young. This was a book I was drawn to with no knowledge of the content. I did not know if I was going to read fiction or self-help. Book store workers were sure I was looking for a book on a basketball player named The Shaq. I did not know anyone who had read the book, but I knew I must! Saturday night my daughter and son-in-law found the book in a city an hour or so away.

I could not wait to get home on Sunday morning and start reading! I began shortly after noon and by three o'clock I had read all 240+ pages. I have been changed deep in my core being. Without wishing to spoil the plot for you just let me say that the book will answer many questions you may have had about WHY? WHY God did you allow-----? You may not agree theologically with every point, but the story will give you a new insight as to how God sees you and how you see God! Get this book!