I really appreciate all the Happy Birthday wishes extended my way this past weekend. Thank you so much!
Even though I am happy to tell you I am starting my 83rd year on earth, I am also happy to tell you that I am a fan of Jack Benny. Now, if you are too young to remember who Jack Benny was (or you are in another country where Jack Benny was not a nationally known figure), let me tell you: Jack Benny was a comedian who embraced 39 – and decided to stay that age forever more!
Actually, I embrace aging (I wrote a blog using that title once) – I I have no desire to be stuck at 39 or any other age.
Each year brings new insights. Each year brings new joys. Each year brings new challenges. I don’t want to miss any of them.
How about you?
“Wisdom belongs to the aged, and understanding to the old. Grandchildren are the crown of the aged, and the glory of children is their fathers. Moses was 120 years old when he died, yet his eyesight was clear, and he was as strong as ever. Those who are older should speak, for wisdom comes with age.”
Each day I pray for wisdom. Each day I ask God to increase my understanding and I thank the Holy Spirit for the fruits of the spirit that are mine: LOVE, JOY AND PEACE. And I ask God to help me with the other fruits of the spirit: patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control… those that I work to increase as I mature in my faith.
How about you?
As I gather up those birthdays and mature in my faith, I remember to keep a child-like spirit. Enjoy that song. Sing it often. Teach it to your grandchildren. Sing it with your great-grandchildren. Put it in your heart.
You can’t be a lemon or a grape if you wanna be a fruit of the spirit!! Who wants to grow up to be a lemon anyway?
Work on that patience, Jan … your great-grandchildren need to see you model it! And your grand-dog needs you to exercise that gentleness and kindness, too. Ain’t always easy.
How about you?
On my birthday, Ty (our son) and Bob went out fishing (not catching… just fishing) … and that required a lot of patience! I went along for the joy of the ride. It was cool on the water in the morning, but the afternoon warmed up.
That evening Ty and our daughter-in-law, Monika, Bob & I went in to Bozeman for dinner and dessert. We had a delightful time at a table out front of “Hooked Sushi” enjoying the music being played down the sidewalk a half a block, and the people and dogs walking by. Such fun!
Only in a college town would you find this kind of vibrancy. I love it!
We went after dinner to a very popular ice cream store … and had great fun with some college students who were in line ahead of us. Look at this cute kid! (Ya, I had fun teasing him …)
Sunday afternoon Bob, Ty & Monika went kayaking/paddleboarding while TazE & I found a shady spot and relaxed.
You can barely see the mountains outlined back there… not a typically beautiful day on Ennis Lake. Pray for the forest fires to be contained and the firefighters to be safe!
What are you doing this Monday evening besides surfing the net?
When life seems challenging and circumstances tax your patience, do you ever wonder if God’s really gotcha covered?
Well, trust me –
Trust the Savior –
He’s gotta grip on you!
God’s gotta grip on me.
Our Lord’s not lettin’ us go!
“ For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
My Prayer for Today
“Gracious God, how grateful I am to rest secure in Your grip forever.”
God’s Not Gonna Lose Me
In today’s devotional time, Daily Guideposts 2021 reminded me that while I may misplace my sunglasses or my phone occasionally, God never misplaces me!
In his comments, Bill Giovannetti recalled a time when his daughter asked him, “What if I lost God? Or what if God lost me?”
Her younger brother responded, “Right, Josie, you’re the only person in the whole wide world that God forgot about!”
Reading Romans 8:38-39 together, Bill and his son reassured Josie and asked her, “If God keeps His Word, what is that verse telling you?”
“It’s telling me God never loses His sunglasses,” she said, “Or me!”
Today Bob & I celebrated my birthday (I’ll match Bob’s age – and be 82 tomorrow). Our hands certainly show the wear and tear of work and years!
But, like that hold God has on us, we’ve got a grip on one another – and we’re not letting go!
Taking a clue from us and God, Xander’s got a grip on his GreatGrandma Jan (GG – that’s me!) and he’s not letting go!
My great-granddaughter, Sienna, gets a grip on her mommy, my granddaughter, Hope. When children have a hold on loving, devoted parents, God smiles.
It’s a double blessings when Grandpa gets down on the floor with his granddaughter. Our son Ty helped Sienna learn how to get a grip on puzzle skills.
Children are blessed indeed when they have a grandma who reads to them. Sienna gets a grip on what books are all about with Grandma Monika’s help.
How special to get a grip on my great-granddaughter, Sienna, and her mommy, Hope … while they get a grip on TazE, our Boston Terrier!
Not every family has the privilege of gathering 4 generations together! Get a grip on longevity … and the joy of embracing great-grandpa!
Such fun to see TazE getting along so well with Xander!
Monika and Hope with Sienna & Xander… They sang Happy Birthday to help me get a grip on turning a year older. Not older… just more mature, right? So nice!
Ty & Monika brought their big dog, Nakota…
… and TazE had trouble getting a grip on having such a big buddy!
She was exhausted! Time to get under the table and get a grip on some rest!
Embrace Butterflies Yes, it’s so easy to do! Figuratively.
Build a chrysalis – Then sequester for a while. Pop! You’re beautiful!
We all sequestered – We had to during COVID- Now we’re emerging.
Some folks are fearful – Thinking COVID’s not over. Maybe it isn’t.
With the variant Running rampant in places, Some crawled back inside.
Some still wear their masks; Some won’t go to restaurants – Prefer home dining.
Remaining inside Is important for some folks – Others spread their wings.
Like these butterflies, Each situation’s different. So, to each his own!
One of the lessons I learned during this past year and a half or so is that no two people react exactly the same to the same stimulus. We hear through our own filters. We see through our own past experiences. We can’t lay our trip on someone else! We all built our own chrysalis and stayed inside as long as we felt we needed to. Some are inside still. We all will emerge more beautiful in our own sweet time, if we allow our “feelers” to engage with our own needs while respecting the needs of others.
Embrace the butterfly. Fly when you’re ready. See ya in Big Sky!
Embrace Your Pastor. He or she needs your support – And needs your feedback!
Your pastor plants seeds With each sermon presented. You fertilize them.
You add nutrients To the soil where they’re resting By watering them.
Water the ideas By ruminating on them. What was the message?
Each week I take notes. I capture the main ideas As they resonate.
Today’s seeds that Pastor Mary Grace Reynolds sowed were inspired by Ephesians 2:11-22 and enhanced by the experience she had Friday night and Saturday morning with a group of young bicyclists who were traveling 4000 miles for cancer research. Here are my notes that I took while listening this morning.
Serving 400 hours as a hospital chaplain Was required in my seminary studies. Why God – why? What’s the answer? With integrity and stamina, just serve!
Ephesians 2 is not about empty connections. It’s talking about the death of our worst instincts. It’s talking about getting on board with Christ. Paul believed Christ would come back yesterday!
We’re still here thousands of years later… Wondering when that victory over death And division will come to this earth. The Kingdom of God didn’t come in Paul’s time.
It hasn’t come in our time, either. Addictions, abuse, fires, death, wars continue. Where is the world where all divisions are erased? We’re here to put our feet on the ground and be hopeful.
Moments of hope will come to you. The U of Austin bike riders were my moment. Stories of lodging needs and cancer research, Tenacity, friendship, and HOPE scenarios entered.
Hope is a screamer and fighter. Sometimes it works out for the good. HOPE is the reality that God is love. Evil will not win. God’s hope will!
Say YES to what pulls on your heartstrings. Say YES to the reality of God’s hope. Say YES to Truth and love and reaching out. Say YES to cancer research and to helping.
Every inch gained in the fight against cancer Is an inch toward life and hope. We are building the Kingdom of God here Where violence and oppression will be foreign to us.
With tenacity, hang in there. With tenacity listen to God’s response to Your questioning… Why God? Why? With tenacity and stamina and love, just serve!
Embrace Your Pastor. He or she needs your support – And needs your feedback!
Happy Sunday. Thanks for visiting JanBeek See ya tomorrow (God willing).
Do you embrace trust? In whom do you place your trust? The Lord says, “Trust Me!”
Then He said to His disciples, “Why can’t you trust Me?”
Are you facing strife? Is life full of challenges? Where do you place trust?
Do you have answers – Solutions all by yourself? Independence sucks!
Interdependence Is what the Lord asks of us. Put your hand in His!
When you reach to Him, Count on His hand there for you. Invest time with God.
Commit to trust Him. Recount His great faithfulness. Put away your doubts.
Give God something small. Then allow yourself to trust Him with bigger things.
Psalm 91 is a profound reminder that nothing can separate us from the love of God. It’s a strong reminder of God’s loving care and protection. It is a call to trust in God, even in the midst of danger. The Psalmist reminds us of the safest place:
“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the Shadow of the Almighty.”
Bob and I are facing some challenging situations these days related to his health, our own home improvements, and church property decisions. We are not alone in facing these dilemmas, but opinions of others can often be conflicting. The Bible tells us that we must put our trust in the one who stills the waters. Lay our souls bare before the Lord and listen for His mighty word… Watch for His guidance … Seek His counsel.
Often the road to answers has a fork in it. Knowing which path to take requires discernment, openness, and trust.
As I strive to spread love, joy, peace, faith and unity, I often embrace haiku as a means of expression. Today I learned about a poetry form that is new to me: ukiah. It is reverse haiku. Instead of pattern of 5-7-5, it uses a 7-5-7 pattern. It is a joy to me to learn new things … and to put new ideas into practice. Do you find joy in newness?
Try applying new concepts Making room for joy Embrace ukiah today
Then I learned, Oh no! There’s another requirement for ukiah. It has to rhyme! All three lines? Or just two of the three?
I researched it and found the definition written by the person who invented it, Robert Ropars :
“My idea is the opposite of the haiku. I was thinking it should be a “Roparsku” but my lack of ego (and my very wise girlfriend) kept me grounded. So since I’m talking about the opposite, then reversed it would a “Ukiah.” Now searching around online I see some people have played with variations (calling this a “reverse haiku”), but only changed the syllabic construction. I think a true “reversal” would also take into account the rhyme aspect. In addition, this adds an extra level of challenge to the endeavor.
It would be composed of: •3 lines in length •rhyming •lines 1 and 3 contain 7 syllables •line 2 contains 5 syllables
Haiku example: Winds blowing lightly Leaves whispering in the dark Stars twinkling above
Ukiah example: Leaves are drifting in the night The stars are so bright Shivering I hold you tight
Wow… all three lines rhyme. That changes everything!
I took its ideas and tried to create a Ukiah using it:
You can’t see me; I hear you – And you can’t touch – true, But I feel you near clear through.
You do not taste my sad tears, But I cry your fears. Your sadness pierces like spears.
In this very empty room, Silence is perfume: A claustrophobic deep gloom.
I smell and feel it around. Miss your loving sound. Hate social distance ground!
When ukiah is so sad, Where’s joy to be had? Just creating makes me glad.
Practice keeps newness churning. Embrace the yearning. Apply newness while learning.
7-5-7 and add rhyme… Try it! Embrace Ukiah!!
Be a sport! Share your try at ukiah in the comments below.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today. See ya tomorrow (God willing!)
In 2018 we were in Switzerland and our daughter, DeAna, arranged for our grandson, Michael Solioz, to visit a Swiss beekeeper with his Grampy Bob. Bob wrote up some questions ahead of time, and Mike translated them for the man who is the president of the Sion Beekeepers’ Club.
This video is so professionally done by Mike. I guarantee you will enjoy it. The beekeeper is such a delightful man – a retired physician!
So, what did you think of that?
If you have followed my blog for awhile, you know that Bob is a retired beekeeper… He did that for over 20 years after he retired from teaching/coaching.
No, that’s not Bob up there. He rarely dressed up like that! No suit, no gloves, just the hat and veil sometimes. He is the “bee whisperer” according to beekeeper hobbyists here who enlist his help with their hives occasionally.
Notice Bob’s short pants, bare hands, and hat without veil. Experienced beekeepers seem to know how to approach the bees with peaceful intentions that the bees can sense… unless they’re Africanized bees (that’s a whole other blog topic someday).
Anyway, it was fun to uncover that 2018 Swiss beekeeper interview. I hope you enjoyed it.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek. See ya tomorrow(God willing)
Victor Salazar and Bob have stayed in touch for 50 years. How has that happened?
Victor was Bob’s wrestling student when Bob coached at Hillsdale High in San Mateo, CA. back in the 1970’s. Every year at Christmas, we exchanged Christmas cards. Victor let us know where he was each year – and his career took him to over 30 different countries! What a joy to have Vic come from Alabama to reconnect with us here in Montana this week!
I have had the fun of that kind of connection with former students, too. This is Ty Stiles and his wife with Bob & me. He was my kindergarten student in 1962! I named our first child, Ty. We never let Ty Stiles out of our sphere of contact. He was in my prayers daily. He came with his wife, Roxanne, from California to visit us a few years ago. About a year after his visit, sadly, Ty left this earth for is eternal home. My memories of him and his visit warm my heart every single day as I look at the cross he welded and sent to us shortly after his visit.
There’s no greater joy Than to reconnect with friends From long, long ago
5 Ways to Keep Long-time Friends
Pray lovingly for them daily.
Be sure to keep them in your address book and write to them often (don’t just rely on social media)
Pick up the phone and talk to them, emptying yourself into them… it’s an investment. Be loyal and be confidential.
Let them know how much they mean to you, but don’t force the relationship. It has to be natural. Don’t insist that the relationship is forever reciprocal. Some friendships are meant to be seasonal… and the season may last years – but maybe not. You can’t control that.
Be honest and transparent with them … let them see your warts. It shows you trust them not to hurt you… and you are trustworthy in return.
Embrace Long-time Friendships Never let those precious folks go Keep them forever in your heart How long we’ll be here, we can’t know
Embrace Long-time Friends My heart’s covered with footprints. How about your heart?
Don’t overlook your life’s importance or minimize its worth. It doesn’t matter if you’re on an allowance or Social Security. No matter where you are in life, you have so much to give.
The vital part of your life never disappears or fades away. Each of us is vital to God. He gives us the courage to go out and live, to heed His call, and step out in faith on a new journey today.
In faithful obedience, lean forward to hear Him. He doesn’t shout. His call is quiet and personal. Get serious. Listen carefully. Are you up for a new journey? Have faith and step out!
I wrote the poem, “Have Faith and Step Out” in 2002 while we were still living in California. I had officially retired from teaching in 1999, but daily I was looking for new direction, new purpose, new adventures. The International Library of Poetry published the poem in its 2002 Anthology of Poetry and sent me a dozen greeting cards with the poem printed on the front of them. Today I am using one of those cards for a friend who is stepping onto a new path.
The poem has become more meaningful in the nearly 20 years since its creation. The older I am, the more I realize, “No matter where you are in life, you have so much to give.” Your age doesn’t matter. Your place doesn’t matter. What matters is your mindset, your faith, your motivation.
Today Bob is out on Lucille (our red-headed ATV on which we have a “Ball”) with his former student, Victor, who is visiting from Alabama. Victor was Bob’s wrestling student back in the 1970’s. He reminded us that Bob also was his Drivers Education teacher. They are on an adventure – going to a lake above Sheridan. Our Boston, TazE, is with them. Ah, yes, step out in faith. Have fun!
Where He leads me, I will follow!
Remember, no matter where you are in life, you have so much to give.
Where are you being called to go today? What are you being called to do? Whatever it is, step out in faith. He will give you grace and glory… He’ll be with you all the way!
When you hear the word “steadfastness,” what comes to mind?
Steadfastness comes from the root word, STEADY. I watched our family in Tahoe last month play that game that tests how steady your hands are and how skilled you are at choosing what can be removed from the wooden pyramid without toppling the whole thing over.
The collegiate definition of steadfast is:
“firmly fixed in place” or “not subject to change” or “firm in belief, determination, or adherence”
Synonyms for steadfastness include:
constant, dedicated, devoted, devout, faithful, fast, steady, and true.
So, when I think of the word steadfastness, I think of faithfulness and dedication. I think of forever friends who stick by us – always there for us in good times and bad. I think of marriage – -the ones that last – and I am grateful for Bob’s steadfastness.
As a Man of God, Bob has exhibited for nearly 60 years the steadfastness of the Lord in our marriage. I am so grateful that God steered me in Bob’s direction when it was time to choose a partner for life. I can substitute Bob’s name for God’s name in this hymn – because Bob’s steadfastness has been so Christ-like. I truly am blessed!
I am grateful that our families (both Bob’s and mine) set an example of faithfulness for us. There have been no divorces among our parents or grandparents for as far back as we can trace our roots. Likewise, our current families have set an example of faithfulness for our children and grandchildren.
Our son, Ty, and his wife, Monika will celebrate 32 years of marriage this September.
Our daughter, DeAna, and her husband, Andre’ have just celebrated their 34th anniversary. Here are Bob & me 34 years ago at her wedding.
The dress she wore was my dress 25 years earlier – and she was married in the same University of Pacific chapel where Bob & I were wed. The steadfastness of family and traditions makes God smile, I’m sure.
Are you smiling, too?
The pillar is our faith – and the ropes are us – connected through faith for a lifetime and eternity – together – firm in belief, determination, and adherence!
When you EMBRACE STEADFASTNESS and consider the application of that word in your life and acquaintances, what image comes to your mind?
Thanks for visitingJanBeek today. See ya tomorrow(God willing)
It’s a beautiful evening for a maiden fly fishing adventure. Bob & Steve took Mary Grace out on the Madison.
Stay tuned, friends. I’ll give you a report tomorrow to let you know how they did. I hope they are able to catch a few big ones. They will call when they are ready for me to get them at the “take out” in Ennis. Bob says, “The tug is the drug.”
Happy 26th birthday to our new pastor and dear friend, Mary Grace Reynolds!
If you’ve followed my blog for a week or more, you have seen posts about Mary Grace Reynolds.
For the past year and a half, my life has been consumed by the Pastor Nominating Committee. The search was arduous, extensive, long and detailed… and successful!
We reviewed over 100 Pastor Information Forms, Followed up with phone calls, texts, ZOOMs and reference checking on at least 40 of those. The bottom line: We believe Mary Grace was God’s choice for us!
Do you remember your 26th birthday? Where were you? What did you do? What was your station in life?
1939 +26 = 1965; I was a new mom. On this day, my baby, Ty, was 3 months old. We were living in San Francisco – Park Merced, near San Francisco State Univ.
I was teaching in Daly City, California. Bob was working for Shell Oil in S.F. Mama Fran was our babysitter – But, I had the summer off.
Ah, to be 26 again! What would I do differently? I am not sure. What would you do differently?
Yes, I was 26 once upon a time. Seems like an eternity ago. Would I change anything if I could go back and do it again?
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could really embrace and LIVE that sense of equality our constitution espouses?
Where do you find places where world-wide peace is the major goal? How is it expressed?
In addition to poets like Dwight Roth, I love folks like Bob Goff, author of “Love Does.” He wrote:
“Every day God invites us on the same kind of adventure. It’s not a trip where He sends us a rigid itinerary, He simply invites us. God asks what it is He’s made us to love, what it is that captures our attention, what feeds that deep indescribable need of our souls to experience the richness of the world He made. And then, leaning over us, He whispers, “Let’s go do that together.” ― Bob Goff
Bob Goff’s books, “Love Does,” and “Everybody, Always” spell out in clear terms how the “love with actions and in truth” can make such a impact on your own peace – and can matter to the world at large. Check them out, if you have not read them already.
“Jesus talked to His friends a lot about how we should identify ourselves. He said it wouldn’t be what we said we believed or all the good we hoped to do someday. Nope, He said we would identify ourselves simply by how we loved people. It’s tempting to think there is more to it, but there’s not. Love isn’t something we fall into; love is someone we become.” ― Bob Goff, Everybody, Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People
That’s the only way we can work toward world peace… One person, one act, one decision at a time.
It’s not really pride that is my motivator… It is gratitude and love and a faith that runs deep in my soul. Thank You, God, for Your many blessings. Thank you for Your love. I pray that everyone in the world can feel it.
Thank you for the joy and peace that are mine. May they radiate through me. May I generously shine them on all I meet.
When are you the most creative? Where do your creative juices flow most freely? What’s your God-given creative talent?
I am not a painter. I may have some latent talent there, but I have never developed it.
Do you have hidden talents that you have not fully explored?
When children are given the tools and the examples early in life, often that becomes the springboard for a life of artistic talent shared.
No one told me that my scribbles might lead to a creative talent that would be appreciated by others!
But, I was encouraged to sing as a child. That was a talent that did not go unnoticed. How could you ignore it when I was a 3-year-old singing “Appo-Tee, Appo-Tee, AppoTee” all the way through the hymns at church. Singing loudly and joyfully!
Hah! It was during the time of WWII and a popular song was “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree (with Anyone Else But Me).”
You’re probably not old enough to remember it!! Go ahead, click on it here. You’ll love it!!
So how did my “Appo Tee” singing graduate into a full-blown creative talent? Like any talent, it takes involvement, participation, practice.
I have been a member of a choir for as long as I can remember… … always in school, then in church, and eventually our community choir. I am not a soloist, but I love singing in a duet or trio or with a large group. Recently our church choir was able to start up again… it is such a joy!
Once I even got to sing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir during one of their dress rehearsals for their Christmas concert!
The rendition below of “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” was sung by the University of the Pacific Choir at Bob’s and my wedding 2/11/62. Here is the Mormon Tabernacle singing it. I love it so much!
If your talent is not singing or painting, maybe you developed a talent in another area – like cooking or woodworking or metal sculpture.
Of course, one major talent I forgot mention Is instrumental music … the piano or a woodwind or string or brass instrument… Such talent brings so much joy to the player as well to a world of listeners.
I played the accordion and the clarinet as a child and continued to do so until just recently. My accordion is not functioning, there’s a hole in the bellows.
Perhaps I will find another small accordion that I can handle… and will resume that creative endeavor. The children at the day care center and the residents at our local Nursing Home enjoyed it!
Here’s just a small clip – (it’s only 10 seconds!!) of me playing for the residents at my sister’s place in PA a couple of years ago. (I won’t burden you with too much of this!) Hah!
My cousin always used to send me comic strips about the accordion. One was a guy entering heaven and the angel said, “Welcome to Heaven, here’s your harp.” The other was a gal entering Hades. The angel greeted her and said, “Welcome to Hell, here’s your accordion.”
Hah! I miss Cliff and those jokes!!
The question remains: What are your God-given talents? Have you developed an area of creativity?
I forgot to mention writing!! Us bloggers imagine ourselves to have that talent or else we wouldn’t be posting here on WordPress, right?
But, even this writing talent doesn’t improve without practice, right? Never stop learning and trying to improve – regardless of the area of creativity… gardening & photography (Derrick) – poetry (Dwight, Richard, Pat, Rahul, etc.) cooking (Andre’ & Caralyn) You know who you are… and what you need to do!
Our library was having a book sale last week. For a dollar, I was able to buy this wonderful book. Copyrighted 20 years ago, it’s never outdated, and I can never stop learning how to be a better writer. Like any talent, it takes practice, study, and more practice. And feedback always helps!
Roses are red. Violets are pink. I’m an emerging poet. Man, don’t I stink?
No, don’t badmouth yourself!! Keep workin’ at it…
Embrace Creativity! Tell me about yours…
Thanks for sharing! See ya tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
My friend, Lee, sent me a You.Tube video today. He said it was “worth your time and thoughts.” I agree!. It was narrated by a guy with a wonderful British accent. I bet it was created several years ago. The words in blue below are his. The red is my editorial comment about that item!
Whether you wear a $300. or a $3. watch, they both tell the same thing.
But the whole deal is, this watch does so much more than tell time! And it costs way more than $300. . Price tag = $539.98
Whether you carry a $300. or a $30. handbag, the amount of money inside is still the same.
This one actually is a $2,350. Guggi If you buy it, you’ll certainly have less money to put inside! Don’t you have better things to do with your money??
Whether we drive a $150,000. car or a $30,000. car, the road and distance are the same… and we get to the same destination.
But, the Ferrari is so much more fun! And you can certainly go faster! (If you survive at those speeds, that is)
Whether you drink a bottle of $300. or a $10. bottle of wine, the hangover is the same.
But Wine Spectator Magazine says, “It’s not as if wines that cost $10. or less are going to make you feel bad, or that wines that cost over $50 are never going to give you a hangover… How much wine you consume is the biggest variable…” So, in both cases, it’s the whole bottle? Not a good idea regardless of the price!
Whether the house you live in is 300 sq. ft. or a huge mansion with 30,000 sq. ft., loneliness is the same.
Yes, you can be lonely in a shack or you can be lonely in a castle. The size of the house has little to do with it. But, remember loneliness and alone are two different animals. Just because you’re alone doesn’t mean you have to be lonely. And just because you have a kajillion people around you doesn’t mean you feel loved. It has nothing to do with the size of your house… it’s the size of your heart!
Whether you fly first or economy class, if the plane goes down – you go with it.
True! But aren’t some seats safer than others? An article in the Huffington Post – when asked about the safest place to sit to a plane – wrote this, “Each incident or crash is unique. Impact could come from a nosedive, a water landing, or a runway collision. As a result there is no safest seat.”The good news in that article, though, is “Air travel is the safest form of transportation in the country.” Bon Voyage!! . .
In that same video sent to me this morning by my friend, Lee, this interesting addition was included:
Five Undeniable Facts of Life
Don’t educate your children to be rich; Educate them to be happy, so when they grow up, they will look for the VALUE of things, not the price.
2. Eat your food (a balanced diet) as your medicine otherwise you will have to eat medicine as your food.
3. The ones who love you will never leave you for another because even if there are 100 reasons to give up, s/he will find one reason to hold on.
4. There is a big difference between a human being and being human… Only a few really understand it.
5. You are loved when you are born. You will be loved when you die. In between, you have to manage.
May as well manage joyfully! Embrace Values and live the good life…
When your sunset comes, You will have no regrets!
Good night, my friends. See ya tomorrow (God willing)
In my reading this morning, These Days – Daily Devotionals for Living by Faith, I was inspired by the commentary of Robin Gallaher Branch of Memphis, Tennessee. The scripture that motivated her thoughts was from Ezekiel 1-2:1
The word of the Lord came to the priest Ezekiel, son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar, and the hand of the Lord was on him there.
What Does That Scripture Mean?
Study that painting. Obviously artists have been inspired by this scripture. But somehow, as I read it again, the depth of its meaning escaped me. I was not quite sure what to make of it. Robin Branch, on the other hand, saw “A Vision is a Divine Interruption.”
She wrote, “I tell my students this: Expect Divine Interruptions.”
Why? Because they occur regularly in the Bible.
And that is what she understood was happening to Ezekiel in this passage. She wrote, “He was minding his own business when the heavens suddenly opened.”
Another artist depicted the scene this way:
Wow! Robin Branch describes it in words, “He saw four living creatures in human-like forms. Each had four faces: those of human being, lion, ox, and eagle… When the creatures moved, their wings sounded like mighty waters.”
What did he do? Ezekiel’s response was, “I fell on my face.” (verse 28)
God Interrupts Our Lives
Ezekiel shows us what to do when God interrupts our lives with a vision, a dream, or an angelic encounter. Worship and wait to be addressed!
But, how many of us have had God present Himself to us in a vision or a dream or an angelic encounter?
Maybe more of us than we realize! Do we open our eyes and hearts to recognize those defining moments? Do we see the angels in our midst? Do we know God makes divine appointments with us? Do we feel His presence?
Live in Expectancy
Do you live in a state of expectation, looking to see God in others? Do you know God is making broken things brand new? I see God in you! I see God in the defining moments of my life.
Daily Word, a Unity Publication, provides a daily word (or words) to ponder. It has a short devotional to enhance the word. Today’s word was “Expectation.” In the commentary, the title was, “Expectation keeps my mind positive and my heart full.
“Living in a state of expectancy kindles a quiet excitement in my heart, keeping me passionate about life.”
If I live in expectancy, I encounter defining moments …
Moments that define us are often not recognized until years later.
What are Defining Moments?
Of course, if you are married happily, you know a defining moment in your life is your wedding. That one is easy to recognize.
Defining moments are those that impact you, change your direction, or reinforce it. They change your thinking. They wake you up to an Ah-hah moment, or they sit quietly in your subconscious – ready for the day you are prepared to recognize their impact and put their lesson to work in your life.
I asked Bob, as we were together in our sanctuary this morning, doing our Bible Study and devotionals, “What are the defining moments of your life?”
Right away, he said, “Our wedding day.”
See, I told you.. that one’s a given. Especially for folks like us who have stuck it out through thick and thin for 59 years!
Not All Are Positive
Not all of your defining moments are going to be the mountaintop experiences. Some are experienced in the valleys of our lives.
One of mine was when I had a burst appendix. I thought I was constipated and that’s why I ached so much. I tried laxatives. I tried a therapeutic massage. It just got worse. Finally the pain was so intense, I couldn’t sleep and I was crying out. Bob took me at midnight to the emergency room in the hospital just 5 minutes from home. They ran a bunch of tests, took x-rays, thought it was diverticulitis. Sent the x-rays to the larger hospital in Bozeman (an hour’s drive away). The doctors there looked at them and called to say, “Get that lady in here right now! She has a burst appendix.”
Why was this a “defining moment”? A dear lady (one of our medical center volunteers named Donna) road with me in the ambulance to Bozeman held my hand and prayed with me the whole way. She was an angel on earth! She helped me survive the painful ride to the hospital. Once there, the doctors told me I could have died. At my age (I was 79 or 80), many don’t survive such an ordeal.
it’s probably not a good idea to ignore excruciating pain or self-medicate
it’s not wise to diagnose your own ailment
a prayer angel can make all the difference between life/death and comfort/agony
Some Defining Moments are Very Positive
A mountaintop defining moment for me occurred when I was only 16 years old. It was the summer between my junior and senior years in high school. I was attending a summer “Music Therapy Clinic” at the College of the Pacific. One of our participants was a little boy named Jeremy. He about 4 years old and had never spoken. He had a voice. He could scream when he was upset. He could moan. He could whimper. But he had not spoken any words.
My music therapy counselor/teacher, Mrs. Harbert, was playing the piano. We all were sitting on the floor in a circle. Each of us had a child in our lap. Mine was Jeremy. Mrs. Harbert was playing a non-sensical, very rhythmic song. Its only word was “Hospodipomilwi.”
I bounced Jeremy on my lap and sang quietly in his ear.
All of a sudden, Jeremy began to sing!! “Hospodipomilwi”
A year or so later, I saw Jeremy and his mom when I was shopping near the college. She said, “I can’t believe I used to pray for him to speak. Now I can’t get him to stop talking!”
There is no greater thrill than to help a needy child
Music is magical
I wanted a career where I could work with children and music
God’s Divine Interruptions Change Us
We were living in California. Bob was still working as a beekeeper. I was retired. He wasn’t sure he was ready to retire yet, but we talked about it. We didn’t know where we wanted to live after his retirement, but we were pretty sure we didn’t want to stay in California. The state was growing in population faster than the the infra-structure could handle the numbers.
Then he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Life changed. We changed.
I won’t take you through the whole three year process, just suffice to say, it was a defining moment! His cancer caused us to reevaluate where we were, who we were, and where we wanted to be.
It is the reason we now live in this place we call God’s Country, Ennis Montana.
The Road of Life is Filled with Defining Moments
The road of life is filled with highs, lows, mountaintops and valleys, potholes and gravel.
When life knocks you down, when you are going along minding your own business and the heavens open up, or the bridge collapses and you fall into a crevice, remember Ezekiel.
He fell on his face. He called out to God. He waited for God to direct him.
Let God’s still small voice direct you. Like my Donna, watch for the angels all around you.
Let His strength illuminate your path. Like Josh Williams, see God in others and let their strength encourage you.
Let the defining moments speak to you. Like Jeremy, find your voice and sing! Hos-po-di-po-mil-wi
In a world of self-reliance, Where “I can do it” is king, Being reliant on others Is construed as a “weakness thing.”
But, as Christians we are taught To rely not on our own strength. “Lean not on your own understanding.” God is within a prayer’s length.
In today’s prayerful message, Our wonderful pastor, Mary Grace, Talked about God’s will and love, And seeking our Lord, face-to-face.
“God of forgiveness, hear our confession to you. You have called us to excellence in compassion and we fall short of your confidence in us. You grant us grace and we abuse your gift. You expect us to align our hearts with your will and that our love will be genuine. But we trust our own desires rather than rely on your goodness. We look after our own comfort instead of our neighbor’s needs. In Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us our sins. Amen”
As you know (if you’ve followed my blog for a couple of weeks or more), I take copious notes as I listen to the sermon through my fingertips each Sunday. Sometimes I translate what I am hearing into poetry. Today’s doesn’t rhyme. It’s free verse. But it poured out as I tried to capture the main ideas. First, look at the scripture on which the sermon was based.
Jesus Raises a Dead Girl and Heals a Sick Woman
21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. 22 Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23 He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24 So Jesus went with him.
A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”
32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
35 While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher anymore?”
36 Overhearing[a] what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
37 He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James. 38 When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. 39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” 40 But they laughed at him.
After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. 43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.
The sermon title was “Fools for Hoping”
“Secondhand Lions” was a movie with Caine and Duvall. The fictional characters were replicas of my grandfather and uncle! The film is wonderful and whimsical (don’t believe the critics). Believe what you want to believe… and here are some essentials: “What every boy needs to know” – a speech worth hearing…
People are basically good
Money and power mean nothing
True love never dies
Integrity means everything
Love, truth, and integrity are essential
True or not, those are worth believing!
We don’t see much love in the news these days. The news is full of the ways we are really awful to one another. Recent news revealed 751 unmarked graves of indigenous children found this week in Canada. Children taken from their families and forced to attend the former Marieval Indian Residential School.
Survivors, community honour 751 unmarked graves at Sask. residential school site with vigil
Seven-hundred and fifty-one lights spanned the entirety of the unmarked graves discovered on Cowessess First Nation in southeast Saskatchewan where a large group of people, many wearing orange clothes, gathered on Saturday night in honour of the remains.
An elder in the community who spoke at the vigil likened the finding of 751 unmarked graves to a scab that had been “slowly healing” being ripped off.
Not one of us is wholly good, so the natural inclination When confronted with our sinful nature is despair. Confession and repentance are the next steps, but Where do we go after confession?
We need to define our beliefs and act on hope… Even when it seems foolish to do so. Be ready to be made fools for your integrity. Stand up for what is right… stand up for Truth!
The woman in Mark 5 took the show! Jesus asked, “Who touched me?” The disciples laughed, “Everyone’s touching you!” Jairus was impatient, “My daughter needs you!”
He wondered why Jesus was taking precious time To deal with a woman with a 12 year infirmity. Let’s assume the woman just happened to be Outside the crowd that day and heard of Jesus.
She heard Jairus – with hopefulness in his voice – Asking Jesus to help his dying daughter. His hope inspired her hope as well. Two lives were saved that day.
Our speech, our attitudes, and our actions Can have a positive affect on others. We need to consciously lean on God With hope and trust and mindfulness.
Jairus could have listened to his tears, But he stepped up and listened to hope. His act of believing in the power of Christ to heal Allowed other to respond in hope, too.
“Your faith has made you whole,” Jesus told The woman whose hemorrhaging stopped. The only way out is reaching out in the hope That God’s love will make life better.
I’ll stay a fool for hope!
Rely on God
I’ll stay a fool for God.
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Thanks for sharing a part of your Sunday with me. I hope you have a wonderful week.
When I searched to see if I have used this theme of tenacity already this year, I found a link to “Tenacity Defined” written a couple of years ago … before I started the current “Embrace” series. So, I decided it was OK to use the theme again because I have whole different take on it now.
So much has happened in these last three years since that 2018 post. Among the defining “happenings” is COVID-19. Impacting my view of life has been the way in which the pandemic exposed some of our worst tendencies. The issue of racism raised its ugly head. (I guess it never really was hidden)… but … In spite of the tenacity of people who to this day follow the non-violent teachings of Martin Luther King, Jr., there has been an increase in violent crime – and especially racially motivated hatred.
I saw images of people of Asian descent being knocked to the ground, innocent little Chinese ladies being beaten, and people standing by observing these horrendous acts – and doing nothing to stop them.
Where does tenacity fit in to this line of thinking?
Jeremy Liew from Riverside, Connecticut wrote in Time Magazine this week, “The last year made me comfortable with being uncomfortable.” In his article titled, Newfound Empathy, he explains his discomfort, ending with, “I am still uncomfortable, but now I am confident. I appreciate who I am. I am grateful for what I have – my education and health, and my three annoying sisters.”
Jeremy’s tenacious attitude, at the tender young age of 13, does not come magically. He must have some role models out there who are helping him appreciate his uniqueness, and value his attributes.
The song’s theme of “Never Give Up” reminds me that change comes slowly, but it comes. Like MLK,Jr. in his “I Have a Dream” speech, we need to adopt that attitude of hope. Tenaciously hang on to HOPE. And then we need to live it! We need to be able to say, along with Jeremy Liew, “I am confident.”
In 1936, when she was a bride, transplanted from Washington to central California, my mom had a habit of cutting favorite poems out of the newspaper and taping them to a piece of cardboard. She hung that cardboard inside her kitchen cabinet.
It is now hanging inside my kitchen cabinet here in Montana. I treasure it… and I hold tenaciously to the lessons those various poems teach me. What a legacy, huh? The poem above was brought to mind today by Ann Koplow’s wonderful blog. She titled her post:
“Wouldn’t life be lots more happy, If we praised the good we see? For there’s such a lot of goodness In the worst of you and me.”
It takes TENACITY to look for and find the good in others. But it is so worth it!! I have a plaque in my dining room that reminds me of this fact. Here it is:
In that Time Magazine article, Jeremy Liew went on to explain, “I was uncomfortable being singled out for how I look (I am an Asian American Pacific Islander). A year ago, people looked at me as f I had COVID-19 or brought it to my community…”
Since when do we traumatize people because of the way they look? Since when do we marginalize them and make them feel inferior?
You say, “Since time immortal”??
Well, I say, “Well, It is time to make a change!”
As the song at the top of this blog says, “I will take a chance to be who I’m meant to be. I won’t let fear keep me from trying. It’s time for me to make a change. Start living the life I want. I’m gonna reach for the sky way up high. I’m never giving up. It’s up to me to see who I can be. Make change reality. I’m never giving up.”
Not only do I need to live the life I want and be who God made me to be, but I need to spread that message to others. Find the gold in them. Encourage them to be all that God made them to be, too.
One of my favorite bloggers is Cristian Mihai “The Art of Blogging” … If you go to his About page and read his explanation of who he is, you will see that it ends with these 4 lines:
“Sometimes I think I am who I am because someone has to be.
I believe it’s always strangers who ask the most difficult question.
‘Who are you?‘
I just wrote 1,500 words and I’m still not sure you know who I am.“
That last link is one of Cristian’s blogs that I think is so powerful that I told him he needs to bookmark it and read it when he is 80, because he writes about the trials of being a 20-something-year-old. He writes it now as a 31-year-old who has wisened beyond his years. He looks at life through very unique lenses. He is tenacious about passing along to others “The Art of Blogging” with the hope of improving us all.
The road to our best self is a long and arduous one. No one ever said it was gonna be easy. After all, we’re only human! But in our humanity is a divine core. We were made in God’s image. We are His Beloved. So, when I talk about finding the gold, that’s the core I am talking about.
I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.
Do you have something you are needing to do? Something you might feel ill equipped to accomplish? Or maybe, just not as strong as you thought you might be… and needing to take it one baby step at a time? Well, that’s where tenacity comes in. Start slowly… work yourself up to the full extent of your power … the power of the Holy Spirit in you.
Mom used to tell me, “Everything worth having is worth working for!”
I believe it. And that includes things like love, equality, unity, strength, freedom, peace, clarity, and direction.
One thought at a time. One step at a time. One act at a time.
We went on an adventure today into the Gravelly Range with our friend, Julie, and her dog, Zeke. Come enjoy the Montana Vistas with us!
The Gravelly Range is just south-west of Ennis. We were looking for wildflowers. This is the time of year when they usually are prolific. However, it has been a relatively dry spring and summer so far, so the flowers were not as colorful or plentiful as usual.
The clouds made the sky so beautiful and interesting today, but they also threatened rain. Fortunately we had about an inch or two of rain last night, so it settled the dust. And it held off until we were headed back home this afternoon.
This is a purple sticky wild geranium. Julie has an app on her iPhone that allows her to take a picture of a flower and then have the phone tell her the name of that flower. What a cool app! “Picture This” is the name I think. I need to check it out.
We reached a place where the road was closed and we could go no further. So, we stopped and rested a while and let TazE and Zeke run around.
Like I said, there were more cows than wild flowers, so of course, there were plenty of places for an inquisitive pup to explore!!
Heading back down the mountain, the cows bellowed at us! They were not happy that we were disturbing their peace.
The storm clouds threatened … and we got a few raindrops on our way back to the pickup.
Ah, home – with great memories of beautiful Montana Vistas!
And a beautiful sunset ended our day…
I hope you had a beautiful day, too. Embrace Montana Vistas. Come visit us!
Daily Guideposts 2021 devotional today inspired this blog topic. After I chose “Multiplying” as my EMBRACE theme today, every place I looked, I saw evidence of answers to my question, “But what needs to be multiplied?”
When you hear/read the word “multiplying” what comes to mind? I asked Bob that question this morning after my devotional time while we were chatting at the breakfast table.
“Increasing comes to mind. Numbers come to mind,” he answered.
What comes to your mind?
In her blog this morning, Marva Seaton wrote about multiplying. She didn’t use the word, but the concept definitely was there.
I used to play the clarinet. I was once upon a time pretty good at it. I was first chair in the University of Pacific Band and Orchestra. But now my arthritic fingers won’t cover the holes. I can’t get a B natural out of it for love nor money!
Unlike the saxophone, the clarinet keys require finger covers. When I had to put my instrument in the closet and say Good-bye to my clarinet playing days. I was sad. But I have an enormous appreciation for good clarinetists. They don’t come much better than Artie Shaw! Do go up there and click to listen to his rendition of “My Heart Stood Still” And sing along!
MY HEART STOOD STILL
Songwriters: Richard Rodgers / Lorenz Hart
I took one look at you That’s all I meant to do And then my heart stood still My feet could step and walk My lips could move and talk And yet my heart stood still Though not a single word was spoken I could tell you knew That unfelt clasp of hands Told me so well you knew I never lived at all Until the thrill of that moment When my heart stood still I took one look at you That’s all I meant to do And then my heart stopped right there My feet could step and walk My lips could move and talk And yet my heart stood still Though not a single word was spoken I could tell you knew That unfelt claps of hands Told me so well you knew I never lived at all Until the thrill of that moment When my heart stood still
Sally and I were in the Turlock Junior Band as well as the Turlock High School Band. Many years of fond musical memories!
Did you play an instrument when you were in school? Do you play it still?
Embrace the Clarinet! It’s a great instrument!!
What did you do today? I hope you had a great Monday.
See ya tomorrow(God willing)
P.S. Here is a solo I was once able to play when I was at UOP and practicing my clarinet several hours every day.
I admire musicians who are able to keep their skills alive their whole lives long. Any skill requires practice to maintain mastery.
What skills do you practice to keep them alive? MIne are cooking and writing. I can do those even though my fingers are gnarled!
Today was a very important, memorable day at our church. It was Father’s Day, yes… and we honored our fathers and our Father in Heaven. But the real LIGHT of the day was the opportunity to be in church on this special Sunday when Mary Grace Reynolds, was presenting her first sermon as our official new pastor. MGR is fresh out of seminary, but she conducted the service as if she had ten years of experience! We are so blessed to have her at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church here in Ennis, MT. If you ever are in our area on a Sunday, you MUST come and experience the Holy Spirit alive and well in this little community!!
Her sermon title was, “There’s a Light On.”
If you have followed my blog for a week or more, you know that most Sundays as I listen to the sermon, I take notes – and most of the time I take them in some form of poetry. Today was no exception. Here is what I heard through my JanBeek filter:
I feel the Holy Spirit Perched on my shoulder. How we understand where we’ve been Matters a lot as we grow older.
Even though this is a new beginning, We sit on the blessings and woes of the past. We incorporate these into who we are As we step into the future – at last.
Genesis One spoke to me this week. Looking at effortless, timeless majesty, We are reminded of God’s control As the mountains loom with no hesitancy.
God holds all the cards; we don’t! The utility of history – truth and facts – Reminds us to adapt historical records As we articulate how God in creation acts.
God’s power was articulated in Genesis By stories and memories told with persistence. The Israelites were reminded of their God Who breathed the world into existence.
The creation story reminded them of hope – The hope and identity they have in God. Our stories tell who and where we’ve been. They reveal our cracks, our cobwebs, our sin.
We can look back at the God Who turned the light on within us, And we notice God’s sovereignty – Grateful for how His Son freed sin from us.
The Israelites remember the pain They had in exile for so many years. We too remember the pain and grief Of life – and thank God for drying our tears.
As we move as a church body Into newness, remember the past. Recall how He kept the light on – And move joyfully into the future – at last.
God is in this place with us Sure as the sun continues to rise. We’re challenged to move forward now Knowing we’re guided by the Light of God’s eyes.
There’s a Light On! Embrace the Light! Amen.
Toward the end of the service, Mary Grace presented a beautiful Pastoral Prayer. I took notes as I prayed this prayer with her:
Holy God, be with us. Most High God, comfort and heal the afflicted. Lord, grant Your presence. Bring them out of their suffering. Lord, we know You can – and You do. Almighty God, whom we sometimes call Father, pour out Your spirit on all fathers who are working today to provide food for their families, and to keep them sheltered. Eternal God, whom we still call Father, You are so much more than earthly fathers. Make whole what has been broken. Most Loving God, we give thanks for all those we call father. Thanks for all those who sacrifice for their children. God, whom we call Father, we stand in praise and awe of Your Power. Remind us You are in the boat and You have the Light on! Amen
Hear our prayer, O Lord. Hear our prayer, O Lord. Incline Thine ear to us, And grant us Thy peace.
Have a beautiful, blessed Sunday, my friends, And a very Happy Father’s Day. See ya tomorrow (God willing) – Love, JanBeek
Embrace Fellowship Cherish being together Time is so fleeting
Enjoy sharing time So much, you forget photos! Just be in the now.
Today our Presbyterian Women met at a gorgeous home right on the Madison River.
Those pictures above were taken several years back at our two annual fundraisers.
Today I intended to take some pictures to post here for you to see how much we enjoy our fellowship. But, I was having so much fun, I forgot to capture the event with my iPhone!
Instead, it is stored up in my memory bank. There were eleven of us. We had Bible Study, then dessert, and then our business meeting.
We planned future events – among them our volunteer schedule at the local Blood Draw next week – and our participation at the Ennis Art Festival (it was cancelled last year due to COVID).
Not being able to hold those functions helped us realize just how much fellowship means to our mental health. We really missed the connections!
I’ll bet you had the same reaction. Being isolated, socially distancing, wearing masks, cancelling events… all took their toll on us! How good to be back together again!!
Now we are able to go out to restaurants again. We socially distance, but we don’t have to wear masks. It is so good to feel safe in the company of others!
I ordered my favorite item on the Sidewinders menu: Reuben sandwich with sweet potato fries. MmmMmmmMmmmm!!
This afternoon, after our PW meeting, our new pastor, Mary Grace Reynolds, came for dinner and a fly casting lesson. Bob took her to the back yard and she practiced. Mary Grace is going to love going out on the Madison River. The guys are all lined up ready to take turns…
I took this slo-motion video so she can critique her technique. She’s a fast learner!
It was such a beautiful evening here. We thoroughly enjoyed our fellowship with Mary Grace. The Pastor Nominating Committee process was a long, arduous task that lasted about a year and a half… but MGR was worth waiting for!
Today our daughter, De, sent us links to this event coming up in Switzerland. (You remember our DeDe lives in Vissoie, Valais Switzerland, right?) We’ve been to this fun event in the past. “The Cow Fights” are an annual event. They are well attended. People go not just to see the excitement of the cows selecting their “Queen Cow” by the survival of the fittest, but for the fun of fellowship with as many friends as they can muster. They bet on the cow of their choice, drink their fill of Swiss wine and beer, and enjoy a picnic lunch high up in the beautiful Alps.
We won’t be there this weekend for the event, but we look forward to fellowship with our daughter and her family this October (God willing). We learned yesterday that she has a polyp on an ovary. It was detected during a routine annual physical. We are waiting for the biopsy report. Please pray with us that it is benign – and she can have it removed with no long-term adverse affects.
Looking out today at our neighbor’s house here in Montana, I can’t help but thank God for this beautiful place we live. I thank God for our “Hood” … gracious, loving, helpful neighbors. The Hockings, across the field from us, installed a gorgeous flag pole while we were on our trip to CA. What a great addition! We look forward to future fellowship with them – soon!
Meantime, here we are in this video – back in CA, sitting around the table at our son’s house, enjoying family fellowship, singing to our grandson-in-law, Drew, who celebrated his birthday back in Montana.
Ah, Family Fellowship… there’s nothing like it! I thank God each day for it. With Father’s Day coming up Sunday after this one, I look at these fathers in my life, and I thank God for their loving hearts.
I hope you have the gift of loving fathers in your circle of fellowship, too. Never take them for granted! Not every child is so blessed!!
IT’S GIFT FROM GOD!
I pray all you dads out there can slow down this week, enjoy life (it’s fleeting – passing waaay too fast), and Embrace the Fellowship of family, friends and fish.
(And I pray Bob can take some time to go out fishing… He’s been working waaay too hard this last few months.)
Embrace family time Our relatives are God’s gifts Cherish time with them!
Lake Tahoe fun A beautiful blue sky day Comfortable breezes
Visiting Faithy And her brand new big puppy Was a real treat
Two legs on the stairs The other two on the floor Poppy knows comfort!
Our great-granddaughter Figured out how to cool off Showed pup what to do
Faith had great hors d’oruvres Then they barbequed chicken No one went hungry
The bear climbed a tree To get away from people Too full to climb far!
A view of Lake Tahoe
Jan & Bob at the lake
Monika & Ty (the gracious hosts)
Liam & Jodie (my niece & grand-nephew)
Faith (my granddaughter)
When our son’s in-laws Have time together with us, Never lost for words!
Celebrate birthdays Treasure the time together Thank God for family
Children grow up fast Get together as often As possibly can
Store up memories Write – so you do not forget – Take lots of pictures!
They came from southern California – They came from Pennsylvania – They came from Sacramento – We came from Montana – There were 16 of us for dinner! When it’s shared family time, the more the merrier. Thank God for gracious family who share their homes, their beds, their food, their car… … and best of all, their love.
Next time we’re together, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Liam is taller than Sam. Like this sugar pine tree, kids grow taller these days… Must be all that family love!
I pray you have a loving family, too… And you have many opportunities To share family time together.
In Loving memory Of my dear, only sister All of us gathered
Many remembered The loving kindness of her I wrote and read this poem:
Sisters are a real treasure – A gift from Heaven with love. Sally shared with me a relationship Designed by God above.
When Sally and I were little, Mom dressed me as her twin. People thought we really were – But she would say, “I’m the oldest – so I win!”
I used to blame my sis for things When I was the culprit – clearly! “I no pick the flaws – maybe Sally d!” Fist full of flowers, I’d point sincerely.
She never held it against me; Her heart was too big for grudges! Always first to shrug nd forgive, She didn’t need a lot of nudges.
We both joined Turlock High Band; Played clarinet – marched in every parade. But she preferred being treasurer – Being sure ny dues were paid.
When God gave out number sense, I must have hid behind the door – Or else I missed it because my sis Had enough for the two of us -and more!
We never really competed with each other. She did her own thing – for sure. A more unique soul never existed – Cut from a loving mold – honest and pure.
She’d give you the shirt off her back If she thought you needed one – And she never missed a potluck – Or any other activity with games and fun.
Her closet was quite organized From Valentine’s to New Year’s Day. You never had to guess the holiday – Her clothing was the display.
After God created Sally, though, He threw away the mold. No one earth could match Her heart, her style – so quirky and bold!
Sally loved her family – of that we had no doubt. She loved her church and her yippy pups. She adored her Lodge sisters and her scouts. She generously gave us oregano, bee stuff, and cups.
I smile when I look at her pictures. They tell a story of a life filled with joy. They help me recall my sister’s love – And be grateful – She was the Real McCoy!
Here is Sally with my grandson, Jordan. The two of them shared a December 20th birthday.
I ended my remarks at Sally’s Memorial with this scripture:
1 Kings 3:12b “…no one like you has been before you and no one like you shall arrive after you.”
Rest in peace, Sis. I’ll see ya later!
And my dear blogging friends, I’ll see YOU later, too. Bob & I will head back to Montana via Delta Airlines tonight. Your prayers for our safe travel and smooth connections will be greatly appreciated.
Go back to your past Embrace cherished memories Cherish family
Yesterday we celebrated family as we gathered at our son, Ty’s place in Placerville, CA. It was Ty’s mother-in-law, Ruthie’s birthday (behind me on the left with hubby, Darrell). We are so blessed to have such a close, loving family! That’s my niece, Jodie, on the right with her hubby, Bill, and son, Liam. Monika’s in back right. Ty & our grandson, Sam are front left.
We were gathered not only to celebrate Ruthie’s birthday, but the day before we all gathered at the cemetery to honor the life of my sister, Sally.
Here is Sally on the right with her best friend, Bonnie Dauley, at a River Cats game. Bonnie & many of Sally’s friends from the Sacramento area joined our family & friends in Turlock for the lovely memorial. It had to be postponed last December due to COVID.
It was a lovely, blue sky day. Here I am reading my poem about my sis to the gathering. Sally’s ashes joined those of her husband and eldest daughter in this beautiful spot where my parents’ ashes also are.
Bob & I have a “drawer” right next to this one where my parents’ ashes are. You may think this is morbid, but I find comfort knowing this detail is taken care of. Do you relate?
Ty introduced the various speakers who remembered the best qualities of my sis. The remarks helped solidify for us all what a unique person Sally was. She was very devoted to her Rebekah and Odd Fellows Lodges, so those organizations were well represented in the service.
Sally’s daughter (my niece, Jodie) has a best friend, Melissa, who came from Utah to celebrate and honor the memory of Sally DeAngeles Butters. Melissa has been Jodie’s best friend since early high school days. What a blessing best buddies are!
My best CA buddy, Marcie, invited us to stay at her place – and had a mini-class of ’57 gathering the night before the service. What a joy to see my old high school buddies! I was so busy enjoying them, I didn’t take any pictures that night. Amazing!
Here’s Marcie out on her patio. And below there is Bob… enjoying the beautiful California sunshine.
After the service, Jodie & Bill invited everyone to lunch at El Jardin in Turlock. It was great food, and a wonderful opportunity for family and friends to connect.
Marcie & Ty with Monika’s parents and Bob’s brothers & sisters-in-law. Below are three of my cousins, Jan DeAngelis Jones, Maria DeAngelis, and Leni Assali. I had not seen them in waaaay too long! (behind Jan is Tim Allen, who enhanced the ambiance with his music)
Jodie, me & Melissa… so good to have time together!
For dessert, we remembered my sister’s love of holidays with cupcakes decorated with all her favorite days.
Wasn’t that a clever idea?
Before returning here to Ty’s in Placerville, we stopped by my cousin, Adrian’s in Modesto, for more visiting time.
Leni Assali & Laura DeAngelis
God bless Jodie & Bill! They worked so hard to make this a memorable occasion – One that honored my sister’s memory and will live in our memories for as long as we live.
We wish our daughter, DeAna, and her hubby Andre’ could have been here – but they are in Switzerland. Too far to come … and they are busy with their restaurant right now. But the picture above is De & Andre’ with Ty & Monika two years ago. You can see they enjoy one another’s company! My hope is that someday Ty & Monika can go to Vissoie to visit De & Andre’ and their gorgeous Swiss Auberge.
Sante’, my friends. Thank you for visiting JanBeek today and sharing this important family time with me vicariously. Today is more chance to spend time here in CA with loved ones. We will have two of my other grandchildren plus my sweet great-granddaughter, Cosette, joining us today.
I hope you have a blessed weekend. What are you planning to do?
This property on Geer Road in Hughson, CA (just north of Turlock) is where Bob grew up. His mom & dad started the Beekman Honey business when Bob was a kid. His mom moved to this place from Pasadena when she was a small child.
Now Bob’s brother, Bruce, and his wife, Ann, have the place. They have made so many improvements, including the change of the old “Rumpus Room” into a Honey and Wine Tasting Room.
The old windmill still stands, and the hollyhocks that Bob’s mom planted are thriving. The bees love them! Ah yes, this smells and feels like home!!
The Ranch is home to about 9 cats with nine lives each! They all came to greet us when we arrived!
Out in the field Bruce & Ann have planted lavender. It is a popular commodity in the Honey Tasting Room along with other items such as honey-scented soaps, various honey samples, and bee related items.
That house below – beyond the lavender field – is where our daughter, De, and her husband, Andre’, lived when they were first married. Ah, memories!
Back at Bruce & Ann’s home, which is just a quarter of a mile through the almond trees from the bee ranch, their oak tree has grown so large, it hides the house as you approach it from the driveway. And the almond trees in the driveway are laden with nuts!!