Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Well I had hoped to post before this, however, life took an unwelcome turn! I was looking forward to a very nice weekend of at least one day of scrapping but I had my plans changed in a big hurry!
It started off as a usual Saturday morning. Got up and poked around. Checked out the Memory Makers Magazine forum and looked at a few digi sights and dreamed of future purchases. Talked with darling daughter and darling son #2. My daughter said she would check back with me later after she went to the grocery and come on my computer and help me set up Photoshop editor. I wanted it as my default editor and it seems to like ACDSee better! Something wasn't set just right, I guess!!
So after feeding the dog and cat and having coffee, Jim and I venture out to enjoy breakfast. Our life has become so nice. We set it up so we never have to hurry. I feel it is our payback after raising the family, working and going to college with three kids in junior high school all at the same time!! Got back home, was looking at Memory Makers Magazine and Nancy called to start work on the computer.
We tried to get her in on my computer and it wasn't working. Checked a couple things...all looked OK. Then we checked the thing we needed most...no Internet! Can't come on my computer if I am not on the net!! So to make a long story shorter...you know me...I can't make it short...I might leave out an important detail...as we got to looking at things...everything just kept getting worse and worse!! Nothing but nothing was working...or at least working right. Then all of a sudden...this. Do you know what this is??? It is a DEAD computer!!! It went completely wacko! And I think I went with it.
You see...I had never had a laptop until my boss gave me his old one when he got his gorgeous, humongous Mac. I was so so thankful for it. Absolutely fell in love with it. Now you have to know that I feel there is no room in our budget, at least now, for me to get a laptop. And I was just getting into my now beloved digi scrapping and that is what my laptop was for. When it went I saw a whole lot of happiness flying out the window with it!!! *Panic!!!*
We worked on it a while trying to get it up and humming...but nothing would work. While we took a break waiting for it to try to boot or something...I forget now...Jim had decided that we were going to get an external hard drive so I could forget about having to deal with a flash drive since the lap had such little room on it. (Only two gig I had been telling my daughter.) While I was ecstatic, I had big doubts about wanting to pay out money right now. Oh well, worry about that later I guess.
Nancy called back and I am telling her about getting the hard drive and she says "No". I said "What" she said, "No. Don't do that. I am going to give you my laptop and I will take yours. Mine has 40 gig on it and that will solve your storage problem." "No way" I said. And do you know what she said to her darling mother???? "No. You have no say in the matter!!" Well, now. That is what I used to tell her...I was certainly not used to hearing it from her.
I will spare you the drivel of all the trying to restore some sense back into that dead computer. I spent hours trying to get it back to factory settings and reinstalling Windows XP which froze and would not go in.
So Sunday, after our trip to the Bradenton Flea Market and Ellenton Outlet Mall, we go to pick up my new little...er...big baby! I was totally speechless! All I could say was OH...Oh...Oh...They all were laughing at me. Jim said I was like a kid on Christmas morning.
I can not believe my daughter did this for me. It brings tears to my eyes. My daughter is one of the sweetest people you will ever meet. She is so caring about everyone. She helps me so much with my computer. She really is a guru! And she is so patient! I keep telling her I know you are rolling your eyes...which she vehemently denies!!
So this post is for my daughter. It is my thank you to her. Not for my computer...don't get me wrong...I love it...not for all her help she gives me on my computer...I would be lost without her...not for all the nice things she does for her dad and me...we love her for that, too...but for being the kind of person she is...gentle, kind and giving to everyone. She brings joy and happiness to everyone around her. We are so proud of her. I don't think I ever told her this, but others will attest to it...I have always said Nancy has taught me so much more than I have ever taught her! Thank you, Nancy, you are very special to so many people!
I do need to add to this, though. When we got up to Nancy's to get MY computer, she of course tries to boot up the "dead" computer. I told her I at least got it to Windows 98 so that she could probably reformat. Well low and behold. She boots up and Windows XP...which I had tried to load two times and it froze in the middle...not even getting through the installation and to finalizing install...is totally installed on the computer. Then, when she looks to see how big it is she says "Mom, this has 13 gig on it, not 2!" Oops...I was thinking RAM all this time!
She wasn't rolling her eyes!!!
My thought for the day.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
I have noticed a very strange thing. I need some people to try it and see if what I have found is true.
I deal with many many people a day...most of them being on the phone. And I must say many of them seem not to be in very good moods...or at least what I consider to be good moods. Now I realize that I am a basically "up" person...not giddy high...but a positive up person and some people are basically not an up person. However, when we deal with each other I think we need to remember to try to be nice to each other. As I have said before...what else to we have than each other?
I must admit that when you deal with these sort of down and nasty, humbug people all day, it can drag you down so you really don't care too much what they have to say. I can't do that. Number one my God and my parents don't want me to be that way and number two it is my job not to be that way. But I am here to tell you...some days it gets pretty hard!!! LOL
So I decided to try something I had heard many many years ago. I tried answering the phone with a smile. Do you know...it makes a difference? A BIG difference! When you smile...it is terribly hard, if not almost impossible to be grumpy or irritable or downright nasty!
I was astounded at what happened. So what do I do? I am sitting in my office all alone...trying...outloud to say things that are nasty. Acting even like I was really mad at someone! I couldn't do it! I really couldn't do it! Can you believe that??? I tried again. Couldn't do it. Tried again. Failed.
So my conclusion at this point after "rigorous testing procedures"...LOL...that you can't do it. I guess maybe it is in the same category as trying to sneeze with your eyes open! Can not be done!!
Thinking even more on this, now I am wondering if that is the way God meant it to be. Maybe...just maybe...God wants us to think about how we treat each other. And to smile...so that what I am saying matches what I am showing...I had to make a conscious effort to do it. I "wanted" to be nice. Maybe nice isn't really as built-in as I had thought.
It is so easy to get caught up in the day...in all the world around us. But we shouldn't do that. You know...each of our days are numbered...from the day we are born we start to die. I hate to think that we waste our precious time given to us by being angry, or moody or generally down all the time. Everyone has their days. We have emotions and God gave us those emotions. It is natural to be down sometimes. But we cannot afford to waste the majority of our time complaining and moaning and snarling and grouching and all those others things that bring not only us but most everyone around us down.
I need you to coddle me some. I need you to try this and see if what I found to be true. I am really curious about this. It was the strangest thing! I tried to think of something that really had upset me and went back to that and tried to growl and yell about it...and I could not do it! Weird is what it was.
Give it a try...would you? Let me know what you find out! I think you will find the same result. We can not smile and be a grump.
I am now trying to always answer the phone with a smile. I don't always succeed yet...but I am working on it. And when I do succeed...I find that my day goes much better and I go home in a much better mood. (As an aside...I think the same thing works when something goes wrong in the office. If I smile...I can let it go by...if I don't...it sends me down a spiralling hill!) Perhaps this affects more of life than I think!
Give it a try. I am anxious to hear from you!
My thought for today...
Thursday, August 14, 2008
It really does. I don't know if I am a germ-a-phobe or not...I guess somewhat! Since there are just the two of us, my husband and I eat out almost everyday, so we see the workings of a lot of restaurants! I probably think this is not a very good thing!
First of all, I am sure some people think we have just had an argument because many nights we can go through an entire meal without saying much, if anything, to each other! But, that is because we have been married forty-three years and just being together is speaking in it's own way to us. We had worked side by side together for about twenty-five years which meant we were together 24-7/365 days a year. We loved it...while I don't recommend it for most...and still miss it since we moved to Florida and had to take separate jobs! But having been together...our desks were so close we could touch each other by reaching out...we really don't need to speak to hear, if you get what I mean. Anyway, by not chattering much at times, we have ample time waiting for our meal to look around and notice what is happening around us. And by doing that, conversation usually ensues!!
Have you ever noticed that they wipe off the tables with the same rag that they wipe the chairs off with? That grosses me out! I mean, people have sat I don't know where through the day...have sat their rears down on the chair, leaving whatever kind of germs you can think of on that chair, and now they are wiping all those seats off and then using the same rag to wipe my table off. Give me a break. I try hard to ignore that!! (And have you ever looked and smelled that rag? I think they have used the same one for days on end!!!)
But before they wipe the table off with that what I call contaminated rag...they first have to rid...or as Ohioans say..."red"...the used...or dirty...dishes from the table. So they pick up everyone's silverware and plates with their bare hands with no caution whether or not they touch the part that has been in people's mouths. Okay. So much for that. But then they pick up the glasses. Have you EVER watched??? They stick their bare fingers in the glasses and pick up not only the glasses but all the germs which whoever drank out of that glass were carrying around with them!! YUK!!! Then might I add...they don't wash their hands, but go to the kitchen and carry out MY food with those germs being laid down on the edge of my plate!!! Oh Lordy!!! Try not to think about that #2!!! LOL Not to mention they have stacked the dishes up on their arms with the bottoms of the plates...which have sat and/or slid across only God knows where...touching the food on the plate under it! LOL
Ummm. This gets better! What about all those condiment bottles??? You know it is bad enough when I see them "marrying" them. Do you know what that is? It is when they empty one bottle into another to make it full and throw the empty away. Now think about this. (In some states it is illegal.) You keep emptying one bottle into another and the contents in those bottles can become older and older...rancid is the word. Lots of botulism build-up because you keep adding new on the top of old and so on and so on...until someone gets sick that night and doesn't know from what!!! And get this...one day I was watching while I was eating, and I look over to see a man use the ketchup and then, get this...are you ready?....he licked the rim all the way around with his tongue and then put the lid on and sat it back on the table!!! I can barely bring myself to use ketchup off a table anymore!!!
Oh! One other little thing while I am venting!!! Have you ever watched the waitresses or waiters set the tables? They always...always...pick the silverware up by the part you are going to put in your mouth or on your food!!! Doesn't seem like much until you realize they just took money at the cash register just before that!!! And we all know about the dirty money!!! *sigh*
Now while I am no germ-a-phobe like Howey Mandel...this kind of stuff can really make my skin crawl!! Maybe the management needs to do a little training! Yet, maybe the management doesn't know about germs in the first place. But this happens in almost every restaurant.
How about you? Have you seen any things like this happen where you eat?
I have pretty well learned to not look around so much or at least not think so much! It helps!!
My thought for the day
Monday, August 11, 2008
---Mr. Rogers, of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood---
Several years ago, my boss at the time, was standing beside my desk. He was saying some things (I could hear him!) and I continued press forward on the work at hand which he needed. All of a sudden I hear...did you get that...I 'hear' him say loudly and very empahatically..."Barbara. Do you hear me?"
I stopped what I was doing and looked up at him...not even a foot away from me and said "Yes. You said..."and I repeated everything he said to me...I think word for word! He said, "Well, you weren't looking at me!" Oh my goodness. I didn't think I had to do that with adults. That is what children need. They need for you to look at them to be assured that you are really hear them.
I guess some adults have not had a good experience with people who really listen! They really do not trust that they have your attention if you are not actively looking them in the eye! Really not their fault. I was raised in a family that listened to each other. And by doing that...we learned to listen to others. They were probably raised in a family where that was not something that happened often.
Listen. What does that mean? MSN Encarta Dictionary says: "Listen. Make conscious effort to hear. Pay attention." OK I get that. But what does conscious mean? They say, "Awake; keenly aware. Fully appreciating the importance of something." Humm. That was interesting to me. I get the fact that it takes work to listen. When we listen, we need to make an effort. A conscious effort...We need to hear...fully appreciating the importance of what people are saying. Well now. I have always thought myself a pretty good listener...but now as I think about it...perhaps my skills need honed just a bit. I guess I really wasn't listening to my boss. I was hearing but not really listening!
I try very hard to listen to what people are saying. I even try to understand why they are saying what they are. But I have let that effort part slide a bit...not fully appreciating what they say. You know...what I say to people I feel is important. I hope they listen. And I need to offer them the same by listening to them and appreciating what they have to say.
I don't want to say to people, "Do you hear me? Do you hear what I am saying? And I need to tell people more often...I hear what you are saying.
Stop and think about the people you really really like. Why do you like them?.........I bet if we really think about it, it is because they listen to you. They care what we are saying. By listening...we know they care, and we all want to be cared about.
We all want to be cared about. It is important to each of us. And Mr. Rogers, as he said in the quote above, was right. Listening is one of the most important things we can do for one another. Because listening is where caring begins.
It is somewhat like love. You can give without loving. But you can't love without giving.
You can hear without caring............
But can you care without listening?
Listening and hearing. There is a difference. A BIG difference.
Are you listening????
My thought for the day.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
I had seen a post yesterday that brought up some thoughts I had not had in a while. This lady was talking about name brand clothes for her infant. Ugh. Give me a break!! I know this is a sore topic for a lot of people but each of us is entitled to their own opinion and I sure have one!!
Ask our children. I bet to this day they know our feelings about name brand clothes!!! There were none in our house. Well, except for one pair of sneakers which our lovely daughter snuck in. We were on a day trip to Kings Island amusement park in Ohio. On the way home we stopped somewhere, but I have long forgotten where. But you know the kind of places...lots to sell and "good prices" yeah, right, for the tourists!!!
We were letting the kids each pick out a thing they wanted and our daughter, then in early junior high school, found these shoes...two pairs...that she liked. They both looked pretty nice so her father said pick one. It doesn't matter to me. How she kept a straight face I still do not know...but one was a generic type good looking tennis shoe and one was about the same look really. She said...OK. She made a choice. Well it wasn't till a day or so later till one of her brothers mentioned well you let Nancy get name brand why can't we??? Name brand. What name brand??? Those Rebok tennis shoes she bought. Reboks? What are Reboks??? We were informed that those were the hottest "in thing" around right then!!! *sigh* It was then we had to start paying attention to the fashion style of the young and not so famous!!! LOL We had been had...but it didn't happen again. And no...the boys were not given the opportunity to have a pair of Reboks. She played the odds...and won. I guess to the victor goes the spoils!!!
We tried to explain to the kids. First of all...most, although not all the time...the moderately priced no name products are as good, if not at times better made, than the so called name brand clothes.
Second of all, there is no way we were paying those kinds of prices to advertise some one's product for nothing. Do you realize how much free advertising these people get? And people are PAYING to get the honor of advertising for them? This is ridiculous to us!!!
Well, I know it made no sense to the kids at that time and it probably would not have to me either. I would rather have been like everyone else...even if it was at my parents' expense!!!
But my whole point is...we are being taken as fools. These companies are getting free advertising dollars...and I am talking lots of free dollars...by making the public feel that they just have to have their label displayed on their chest, on their feet or across their rears...or they just are of inferior quality (or are of superior quality) to the rest of the world!!! Hogwash!! I refuse to buy into such a deal! Not to mention the fact that with some of us, they are really getting their money's worth just because they get a bigger "spread" than with most people!!!
How sad it is to think that children, especially, are being made to feel inferior to their school mates because mom and dad can not (or perhaps choose not) buy these expensive digs for them. (Or even that they are superior to those who do not have them because their parents buy them for them). I find that heart wrenching...on both sides!!! School uniforms are a good thing...but that still doesn't change the street clothes at the movies and malls...there still is a stigma.
Oh I guess there are bigger things to be concerned about...but I can't help but wonder what effect this really does have on the inner workings of some children........
I hope not much.
My thought for today.
Monday, August 4, 2008
I think these days we all spend a lot of time at the malls. While I must admit, with the economy the way it is, most of us just look and dream rather than shop. Finding a parking space at the mall can at times prove to be as interesting and time consuming as a football game!
Have you notice how people drive around and around and around looking for that precious close-in parking place? They try to cut each other off in order to squeeze into a recently opened-up space!! Yes...got it!!! Alright!!! LOL But...not so funny when you hear that there have been bad accidents when two of these "it's my parking place people" have collided, and their tempers raging, have even caused bodily harm when they get out of their vehicles upset over what the other person has done to their car
How about those that stop in the middle of the aisle...hold up traffic...I am talking a lot of traffic...because they "think" someone is about to get into their car and leave? If only they would leave enough room for the rest of us to get around them and move on to whatever we had in mind!! I have seen people drive behind people coming out of the mall as they walk to their car, so that they can wait for their parking place.
I laughed my head off one day when I saw someone do this and the person they were following was on to them. The person walking just kept walking and walking and walking...and the car kept following and following and following!!! Finally the car driver caught on and tore out around the person walking, as you can imagine, very hot!! What a hoot!!!
You know...I find it terribly funny...or odd...that we are so worried about finding a "close-in" parking place when all we are going to do is "walk" in the mall. What are a few more steps?? Besides...doesn't one know...walking is good exercise...especially for we Americans that live such a sedentary existence? (By the way...I guess the malls have not heard that pregnant women are to walk for exercise, because now they have reserved parking places for them!! LOL) I often wonder if the person driving around is in a hurry because they are late going to the gym...which usually costs a fortune...so they can get "in shape" Makes me wonder about our thought process to say the least.
Let me let you in on one of my ways that I tend to "get back" at some of these parking place Geiger counters! I know I am perhaps a little uncaring in this matter but...none the less...I guess it is my own little oddity. You see, when I get a parking place, I figure it is MY parking place until I say I am done with it!!! Just because I have left the mall, does not mean I must immediately get in my car and relinquish that parking place to the guy who is impatiently parked behind me waiting anxiously to grab that spot before anyone else knows it has even been empty. IT IS MY PARKING PLACE TILL I AM DONE!! If I want to look at a map, find a new CD, change a disc, kiss my husband, rearrange the glove compartment or just sit there and cool off...that is my parking place right!!! I am under no obligation to relinquish that spot just because you are tapping your steering wheel, revving your motor or honking your horn!! Please be advised...I am, however, under the obligation to back out and leave as soon as you go on your way...opening it up to the next person who you have held up now for about ten minutes while you blocked the entire aisle as you waited on me, without one concern from you about the people behind you.
Ho hum...so goes the great pay-backs of life.
My thought for today.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Ha Ha!! I bet I got a hold of you with that title!! But I am serious. Have you ever watched people eat? It is fascinating. So multi-faceted, too!
First of all, if you really watch people eat, you can get a pretty good feel for their personality. Some are very particular...watch people at a salad bar if you don't believe me; what a hoot that is! For some, every shred of cheddar must be laid precisely on the salad. Some don't want anything touching. Some pile it as high as a possible, looking like they are afraid someone will eat the rest while they are conquering their mountain. Some are like me and have to pick only dark green lettuce...NO YELLOW! Hate the light yellow lettuce. Eating for me is not a means of survival...it is an event. My DMIL used to love to watch me eat because she said I enjoyed it so much!! (Bless her. She was a special lady.) I want everything perfect. See, you could probably find that out by just watching me at the salad bar!!! It is hilarious. Always pick the seat in the restaurant facing the salad bar. Cheapest entertainment around!!
How about how people chew? Some dig in...chomp away and get so into it. You can tell they might just be having the best time of their life!! Or the ones who take itsy bitsy bites that could possibly get lost in my big mouth never to be found again. Or the ones that chew for an eternity. Hello...do you ever leave anything for your stomach to do? You need not puree everything!!! Oh...don't forget the tidy ones that their lips never touch the utensil. I don't know...maybe they think they won't have to wash it if nothing touches it but food. I tell you...it is so much fun. You must give it a try. I bet you will start laughing thinking about me and that I was right. It is so funny sometimes you almost have to tell someone...lest you allow only yourself to relish (get it...relish...couldn't resist) in the funniest thing you probably saw that day!
But there is a double point I want you to see here. First of all, you can learn a lot about someone by watching what they eat and how they do it. But that's not really the point. The point is that something happens when people eat...especially when they eat together. If you haven't noticed, you need to. Eating and food is a powerful thing. When people gather and begin to eat...barriers begin to fall. All of a sudden, people are leaning on tables and talking with each other. If you are in a group you don't know...the ice is broken by a comment on the food...or how a waitress or waiter is doing their job...and before long...the conversation goes on and a relationship is started. By the time you leave, you bid farewells as if you had been friends for years. Do you see?
We walk in with all these barriers and walls around us...and because of breaking bread in the same area...there is a commonality. Soon something overtakes us and there is a crack in one of the walls and before long the entire wall is gone.
Gotta tell you this one...we were in a classy restaurant years ago...one of those that is broken down into little rooms. We were all sitting there with all our walls around us. Very into our own selves. At this particular restaurant they brought you salad makings on a large lazy susan and put it in the middle of the table and you made your own salad. To do this they brought these tongs to pick up your ingredients. There were only about five small tables in the room. As I said, we were all very into ourselves. The couple at the table in the middle of the room had made their salads and put the tongs securely back into the lettuce in the middle of the lazy susan...so they thought. They had just picked up their forks to politely begin eating a beautifully prepared salad when boom...those wonderfully placed tongs let loose...sprang up out of the bowl, spewing lettuce EVERYWHERE!!!. You would not believe how we all laughed!!! It broke down the walls and we had the best time laughing and talking through the rest of our meals!! This is what food can do!!
But as important as I feel food is in our lives...bringing us more than just nourishment for our bodies...the laughter is so important, too. Just as Mark Twain had said in the thought for the day...the minute we laugh...all our hardnesses yield and a sunny spirit takes its place. It is true. So true that the medical world is finding laughter plays a very important role in keeping good health and healing. I read a book about a man who finding out he had cancer decided to laugh it away. Got every funny movie he could find, read joke books, did everything he could do to laugh. He was cured. The medical profession is beginning to take a serious look at what laughter can do. Florida even offers classes in laughing. Part of the class is laughing...belly laughing..at nothing. They just start to laugh and end up laughing so hard. They have found it reduces stress and helps eliminate bullying.
So I guess this really isn't about eating. It's not about food. It is about laughing. You know...life is hard enough. There are so many horrible things that we have to face. So let's not take the rest of the things so seriously. Laugh. Laugh everyday about something...and laugh hard. See what a change it will bring in how you feel. It makes a difference to me. Hope it does for you, too.
My thought for today.