Sunday, January 30, 2022

Ten Things of Thankful

Come on in, pull up a chair, and read a while. This is another post to the blog hop, Ten Things of Thankful, hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not. It is good to see others joining in by sharing those things for which they are grateful. Although this post is wordier than many of my past posts, I guess I was just in a reflective mode, and your own posts are not limited to a certain length or a format as Dyanne points out. 

1. A time and a place

Early morning when I am alone, before intrusive thoughts begin to stir, I wait. Sometimes I wrap a blanket around me as I settle into a a comfy spot on the sofa, and other times I go sit in a rocking chair where I can catch a glimpse through the window of the frost on the grass glistening while it waits for the steam to rise from radiating Mother earth as she is awakened by the sun’s rays.

A doe's favorite place to hang out

2. Quiet space

There were many years when it seemed a quiet space was a rare commodity and when it happened I was exhausted from the activities of the day and evening, so what could have been the outcome or benefit of that revery departed to find a more alert and attentive subject. For me, reading scriptures is a type of communication with my Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ with the Holy Ghost bringing confirmation of the words through deep felt impressions that I am able to sense best when I am in a quiet space. These quiet spaces often include pondering, or deep thinking, when trying to resolve a problem, or how to be of help to someone and do not necessarily require being inactive as long as the task doesn’t require your full attention and you are able to be safe in you quiet space.

3. Movement

Life is full of opposites as well as opposition. If I remain in one position too long, my body lets me know that I am not being very nice to it and it uses the only way it knows to jar me to my senses by giving me a little pain. . .okay, a lot of pain sometimes. By going back to some of those lessons I have learned and then strayed from when things got better, maybe this is the time to not give up, but to keep devoting some time(s) each day just to do the kind of stretches and other exercises I need to enable me to more fully enjoy life.

4. Reconnecting with distant relatives who are also family history researchers

This one would take a whole other blog post, so I will keep it short, by just saying how happy I am to have reconnected by phone with someone who is the granddaughter of my great grandfather and someone else who is the great granddaughter of my great grand uncle (or brother of my great grandfather). It is just easier to say they are both considered part of the family and it was really fun to catch up on what we know about our ancestors’ lives.

5. Those who have been able to heal

Thankfully our son was vaccinated and boosted, so when he came down with COVID, although the symptoms were not pleasant, he was able to isolate at home and will be able to return to work this coming week. His teenage daughter got it first, a couple of days before she was scheduled to get her booster shot. She too was able to fully recover at home and will get her booster after she has waited the designated number of days.

6. An opportunity to help two people whose families had been estranged make plans to see one another after having lost all contact

Being able to put two cousins in touch with one another after a rift among one’s father and the other’s great grandfather made me feel extremely thankful for the ways I was able to know of each other’s existence and how to contact them and put them in touch with one another. They are hoping to be able to see one another in person later this year.

7. Words

Words and their various meanings and the connotations that are sometimes lost when they were translated into other languages has brought misunderstanding and confusion for centuries, but I am thankful for words. They can inspire or discourage, invite acceptance or denote disapproval, love or hate, etc. We get to choose what we say and how we say it, and there are good or bad consequences depending on what we do as well as what we say.

8. Podcasts

A couple of years ago my husband and I each wrote a book just for our family filled with stories of our lives. I enjoy hearing stories about other people’s lives, so when I learned that the company that published our books was starting a podcast and

sharing some stories from individuals who had consented to the request, I began following the podcast. 

Are there stories that are waiting to be shared with others in your family? Even two siblings telling about the same event have different perspectives of what actually took place.

9. Being able to laugh at oneself when what was said wasn’t what you thought you heard

Humor comes in different forms and through different experiences.  At this stage of our lives, mishearing what has been said often brings miscommunication at the very least and sometimes laughter to the point of tears. This week, I thought he said “feet” in his comment to me and he really said “tea.” I won’t share the whole scenario, but it was hilarious at the time. Oh, how glad I am that there are things that cause us to laugh, not in a derisive way, but just in a way that lightens the moment and the mood.

10.Express cooker

It took so little time to cook a beef stew in our express cooker this week, and once again, I found myself wondering why I don’t use it more often. It was such a time saver.

11. Not to be forgotten

Vic and our family and all those who have been a part of my life and who have enriched my life from the experiences we have shared or the lessons I have learned through knowing them

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Friday, January 14, 2022

Ten Things of Thankful - No More Loud Chirping

Well we still do have birds on the property, but at least the loud chirping produced by an old smoke alarm has been silenced. Whew! For more about that story if you missed it, this link will take you to my last week's Ten Things of Thankful post. Thank you to our host, Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not, and other co-hosts and participants for continuing to return week after week to post their Ten Things of Thankful and/or to read and comment on the posts. BYW, for all you fans of gravy, I think you will love the handle Dyanne put this week's link up.

1. Being able to get all our smoke alarms replaced as quickly as we did following the alarming situation I mentioned in last week’s post

We didn’t realize that after so many years they can become unreliable and may go off when there is no smoke or fire or may not go off when there is. One of the new alarms is a combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarm.

2. Bright light in my laundry room again after getting the ballast replaced and new LED bulbs inserted

The laundry room doesn’t have a window, so when the old bulbs just flickered or didn’t work at all, the hall light had been my backup to be able to kind of see what I was doing. The bulbs started going out sometime after the onset of the COVID pandemic, so we thought we would just wait it out before having someone inside our home to do the job, but with the need to get the smoke alarm situation addressed ASAP, the same serviceman took care of the bulbs. Standing on tall ladders is best left to others at this point in our lives.

3. There was a slight chance we were going to get more snow this past week and we didn’t! We were very glad to finish out the week with the temperatures rising above 49°F.

4. Our kids telling me about WORDLE

I love how it is only possible for a person to  play it once a day. No need to exert self-control. 🤣 

5. Finished reading some Audible books

I sometimes start listening to another book and leave some undone, but this week I completed a newer book and went back and completed a couple of others with just a few remaining chapters.

6. The beautiful song, Reconcile, that some school choirs have sung in recent months has touched my heart. 

Kyle Pederson is the composer. I am thankful for his talent and of others like him who strive to bring about a more peaceful world through words and music.

7. The many records throughout the world which are being digitized and which have already been digitized and those which have been indexed or are in the process of being indexed so people all over the world can discover their family history

At some point in the lives of many people there seems to be a time when they begin to wonder about those who came before them, those who were their ancestors. When I was in my early 30’s and learned that there were ways that I could possible learn the name of one of my great grandmothers, a name that was unknown to my grandmother, I started to search in earnest. Since the onset of the computer age, what used to take months and years to discover is often at our fingertips in minutes now. For some of those harder to find individuals, DNA testing has unlocked some of the doors. 

The upcoming virtual Roots Tech 2022 to be held on March 3-5 is a free resource for beginners as well as to those looking for a more in-depth understanding of how to get past those seemingly dead end walls. Roots Tech also has a Facebook page.

8. Those who save and reuse

I remember my grandmother having a ball of string or twine in a kitchen drawer that held a lot of this and thats, because there always seemed to be some need for string. She just saved whatever string or twine that was tied to something that had been delivered to her. We rarely have a need for string now. Newer products, though most less eco-friendly, have been invented to achieve the same purpose, but once upon a time, string was a thing.

9. An extreme sense of gratitude for the peaceful moments in my life

10. The ways to stay connected to family and friends and even have fun in the process, even when often there are many miles between us

*Vic and all his support and sense of humor

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Friday, January 7, 2022

Ten Things of Thankful - Quieting the Chirp

The day began on a very quiet note, too quiet, and too dark, but the noise level very quickly picked up, a lot! Most of my Ten Things of Thankful blog hop post today revolves around this single day. Thank you Dyanne for hosting week after week. (Be sure to check out her blog at Backsies Is What There Is Not.) 

1. At least the temperatures were not as low this morning when we awoke to a power outage as they were when we had the week-long snowstorm recently.

2. Cotton balls in my ears while wearing a headset came in really handy while trying to soften the blaring of the smoke alarm high up in a vaulted ceiling.

Neither of us can safely climb a tall ladder now to change the battery in this particular smoke  alarm. For some reason, the blaring of the smoke alarm began soon after the power outage happened. BTW, I am so thankful this didn’t happen when we were without power for a stretch of  14 days last year.

Cotton balls in the ears
covered by a headset
helped quiet the noise

3. Hearing loss has a lot of disadvantages, sometimes even when wearing hearing aids, but without wearing them the person is at a real advantage in situations such as in #2. What was very painful for me to endure without resorting to the methods described wasn’t in the least to my husband.

4. Having our camp stove and the fuel needed to operate it, plus having weather that didn’t include rain while we were using it was much appreciated.

5. Power packs, charged and ready to use during the power outage was helpful since I hadn’t charged my phone before I went to bed last night.

6. When we reported the outage first thing this morning, we were told it was going to be five hours before power was restored. Later the power company extended the repair time to an additional four hours, so when the power came back on sooner than the first time given, we were very happy. 😊

7. The blaring of the smoke alarm stopped with the return of the power, but has continued with a loud chirp every 18 seconds, and while it is a chirp that doesn’t hurt one’s ears, it just might drive me crazy if this continues for many days.

8. After contacting an electrical business this afternoon, I discovered that they don’t usually have anyone working on Saturdays, but this Saturday they do. The serviceman will take care of our smoke alarm, plus another little job we have put off doing during these past two years. The woman who took my call said that it must be our lucky day. . .that it was a miracle! As for me, I truly was expecting that we would have to wait until later next week for the service to be done. 

9. Walking trails made by others, which in this case is  a path made by deer

10. Family and others who have been able to stay safe in all sorts of circumstances this week

Vic, our family, and all our friends and acquaintances

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Saturday, January 1, 2022

Ten Things of Thankful - A New Year

Although I have felt grateful in many ways these past few weeks leading up to Christmas, I wasn't up to blogging during that time, so I took a break knowing that sometimes it is necessary for me to do just that. (No, I did not have Covid, so that in itself is a huge thankful.) I am linking up as always to the blog hop Ten Things of Thankful hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not

1. That the storm that was forecast for Christmas Day waited until early the next morning to begin in full force

2. In looking back at this past year we now felt so thankful for the ice storm that enabled us to take care of those widow makers and weakened branches that were left from that storm because the snow storm this week dumped a lot of snow on the branches to the point that we thought we might have to have more branches removed by the professionals. As it turned out, we had one day when the temperatures got up to above freezing and the sun came out and the snow slid off many of those branches.

Sunshine melted a lot of the snow on the trees 

3. We didn’t lose power during this week-long storm, but we were prepared in case that were to happen, i.e. flashlights by our bed, battery operated lamps out on the counter, thermos filled with hot water, containers of water ready should we not have running water, warming light turned on by the switch box in the well house, batteries in the radio, a supply of food that can be fixed easily when one doesn’t have power, etc. We knew it was going to be colder than usual even after the snow would begin melting a little.

Shards of ice formed after the water had
completely melted a little earlier

4. A neighbor who has a Bobcat scraped the lane of the snow and ice, so that those who wanted to venture out onto the road and had the kind of vehicles necessary to navigate the deep snow could get to their destinations 

In our area, the hilly country roads are not the first to get the benefits of the snow plows, and since our vehicles are lower to the ground, we just cancelled a couple of appointments and decided to wait until I felt safer about driving. We still have some snow on the ground, but the lower elevations just down the road a ways are almost completely free of the snow on their properties.

5. A neighbor who has a chainsaw sawed a small limb that did fall on the lane.

6. Family members who had reasons to travel this week when many flights were being cancelled, were able to reach their destinations safely.

7. Besting my total score in a word app game I played on New Years Day and besting my former single word score in the same game

8. Being able to watch a couple of movies at home that made me think 

One made me think about what I eat and another caused me to reflect on how stressful situations may impact our lives. 

9. The different kinds of snow that we were able to witness this week

There were large wet flakes falling slowly and vertically toward the ground, very fine flakes being blown quickly horizontally by very strong gusts, and at other times seemingly being blasted straight toward the ground, mixtures of snow and sleet, and the one type that appeared one evening that looked like snow with sparkling sequins, or ice crystals, and made the world look magical the next morning after having formed snow puffballs on the trees.

Zoom in on the photos to get a closer look at the puffballs and the crystals.

Snow puffballs on the trees

Snow crystals on the ramp

10. Recognizing the ways tools can be repurposed

This week I realized that our extension pole window cleaner with the wide microfiber sleeve would be the perfect way to push the accumulated snow off the vehicles allowing the job to be done relatively quickly.

The car appears to be winking 

***The closeness and love I feel for and from my Savior and for the love I feel for and from my husband and our family

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