Today was a beautiful blue-sky day
to go 4-Wheeling on LUCILLE
(our red-headed ATV who is a BALL)
We drove in our pick-up pulling Lucille on a trailer
to the Macatee Bridge area about 25 miles south of Ennis.
There we met friends, unloaded the ATVs
and headed up into the Gravelly Range
past the Talc Mine.
The day could not have been more beautiful!
We had our bear spray with us.
We were headed to the Cottonwood area
where a couple of hunters
were mauled by Grizzleys last week.
There were 6 guys (That’s Bob on the right)
and 3 of us gals
Yes, when we got up to 8,000 ft. level at the look out,
it was time to bundle up!
I covered my ears,
Barb covered her neck,
and Caroline covered her head and neck!
Barb’s dog, Charley, was not afraid of the cliffs.
Our TazE stuck mostly to the rocky lower levels.
Both dogs enjoyed the freedom to explore.
Our goal was to see the Aspen gold-
Autumn in the Rocky Mountains is a spectacular time of year.
The landscape became more beautiful the farther up we traveled.
This is what we traveled up the Gravelly Range to the Ruby Valley to see!!
When we got up to Monument Ridge at 9,587 feet,
it was gorgeous, but really cold as the wind
came right off the left-over snow
on the higher mountains.
Black Butte had snow tucked in all its crevices.
Caroline bundled up to stay warm.
Coming back down, we made a potty stop and let the pups do a little more roaming.
Barb, Don & Charley were ready to be on our way.
We passed at least two dozen of these harvested tree stacks
on our way to and fro.
The forest service has been very busy
cutting down dead trees and clearing out areas
near the road that might cause a fire hazard.
Besides the gorgeous golden aspen groves,
my other favorite scene is this red barn on the Ruby River.
Isn’t it gorgeous?
We passed some grazing cattle
before following the signs and our friend, Chuck,
who led us back to our vehicles
where we loaded the ATVs and headed home.
See the cool beaver dam we passed on the way down?
Back down in the Madison Valley,
the Madison River,
and the Macatee take-out,
we were ready to return home
and share our great trip with you.
My husband, Bob, is a retired beekeeper. During the 25+ years that he worked with honeybees, he had as many as 2000 hives. I have a passion about saving these insects. It’s about saving our world!
Gotta love those little insects –
The fuzzy little gals who sting.
They are essential to us, you know.
Important all year, not just in spring.
No, I don’t recommend you hug ’em. They wouldn’t like it any more than you. But, I do recommend you protect them. Just think of all that they do.
While the honeybee is out working To gather nectar and return to her hive, She is pollinating the flowers To produce the food that keeps us alive.
One out of every three bites of our food Is related to the work of the bees. As they move from flower to flower, They pollinate ground crops and trees.
Entomophily is the scientific name Of the pollination activity. It is crucial to the production Of many crops and their proclivity.
Celery, strawberries, beets and mustard, Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and such All rely on the honeybee for pollination. Without their work, we wouldn’t have much.
Turnips and peppers, papaya and watermelon, Oranges, coriander, cantaloupe, apples for you. Squash and pumpkins, zucchini and quince, Lemons, limes, and most fruit you love, too.
Alfalfa needs bees, and avocados do, too. Lima beans, string beans and green beans, Almonds and most of the nuts we eat… I could go on, but you get what it means To have honeybees in our world. You can see why protection’s a must. So, get the word out to love those bees! They are essential to life; of that you can trust!
Get the word out!
Honeybees don’t want to sting you. They have barbs on their stingers, you know; So when they sting to protect themselves or their hive, Their stinger stays in you – and they die. Oh no!
Don’t pinch the stinger out of your skin; Just scrape it with your fingernail. Get it out quickly so less poison goes in you, And put ice on the spot. Don’t whimper and wail!
Bees are social insects who gather together To divide up the work in hive and in field. They create the honey for their own food, And use the pollen like bread. Quite a yield!
A beehive is sterile – more clean than a hospital. The bees line their entrance with propolis. It sterilizes their feet when they cross the threshold. They have a lot of tricks that would be good for us!
You gotta love those honeybees! They are essential to our life on earth. If we don’t protect them and do the research, Our lives here won’t have much worth!
Thank you, Roth Poetry, for writing about our bees on your post! It would be great if all my readers would share this post with your friends. Get the word out! Gotta Love Those Honeybees!
I don’t know who took this photo
(I’ll let you know if I find out),
but isn’t it gorgeous?
That’s the Madison Range seen from our Madison Valley.
The prominent mountain is called “The Sphinx.”
From angles farther north, the two parts of it seem joined
and the front looks like the face of the Sphinx
(hence its name).
This view is about 20 miles south of our house.
We see it from this angle
when we go out four-wheeling on our ATV.
Anyway, I just wanted you to see it.
Too pretty not to share!
I am always exploring ways to add more meaning to my daily life. Are you?
I want a greater understanding of:
who I am,
how to decode the world around me
what my purpose is here on earth,
and how I can live more intentionally to fulfill that purpose.
Do we need to have reached some “state of enlightenment”
in order to decode the world around us?
In their book, Spiritual Literacy,
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
wrote the following,
“Some traditions do see such understanding as
a gift or ‘awakening,’ but we believe it is a skill
that can be developed.”
Seeing the Spirit Within
“Such understanding” is defined by the Brussats as the ability to decode the world around us by seeing the sacred in everyday life. They suggest that we look to see the working of the Holy Spirit in our common activities: cooking, eating, working, walking, listening, visiting, praying … Recognize the Spirit moving in our lives through encounters with places, things, people, nature, and animals. Know that the message of the Holy Spirit personifies the greatest commandment: Love One Another. Cultivate the ability, the skill, to tune into the Spirit within you.
Loving One Another unconditionally is made possible by our ability to see the divine in one another. When we value each other’s gifts, when we see every other human being as a Child of One Creator, then we are better able to respond to the Spirit within us.
In his foreword to Spiritual Literacy, Thomas Moore wrote, “It’s odd that after thousands of years of great spiritual example… we have to remind ourselves that spirituality is to be found in everyday life.”
Alphabet of Spiritual Literacy
The Brussats created an Alphabet of Spiritual Literacy with pointers on how certain practices can spell greater meaning in our daily lives.
I have an affection for using the alphabet as a stimulus for positive thoughts. I wrote an A-Z series last year on the subject, “What Makes Me Happy?” It was the start of my 180 consecutive days of blogging here at JanBeek.
So, I am naturally attracted to the Brussat’s Alphabet of Spiritual Literacy. I intend to use it as a new A-Z series here on JanBeek. In so doing, I hope to encourage you, my readers, to cultivate a spiritual vision while keeping an eye on the secular world. I hope to learn with you how we can unite our world views with our spiritual views. Wake up our Spiritual Literacy!
Restore Lost Bonds
I don’t want to live in La-La Land. I don’t want to experience a broad, impenetrable chasm between my social and my spiritual life. Thomas Moore explained that the Brussat’s purpose in writing Spiritual Literacy was to “restore lost bonds between spirit and matter, body and mind, church and home, work and prayer.”
I want my secular and spiritual lives to be in alignment. Do you?
Let’s explore together ways to add more meaning to our daily lives, ways to decode the world around us, ways to live more intentionally to fulfill our purpose. Okay? Are you with me?
It’s God’s number for “completeness.” On the 7th day he rested.
Seven is our house number.
Seven is the number of grandchildren I have.
Seven is my birthday month.
Our phone number ends in a 77.
So does our PO Box number.
Our current house is the 7th dwelling
my husband and I have shared in our 57 years of marriage!
But, my friends, 7 is not my number for completeness. It’s the number that causes me to look in amazement at all this synchronicity – and realize, “This is good!”
But, I am nowhere near complete – and neither is this JanBeek blog! This is good – and it’s fun, but it’s not great yet!
I’m a work in progress, ending my 7th decade on earth … and ready to enter new challenges, new learning, new sharing. Growing in knowledge and grace. Striving to blog with intention and purpose – to make a positive difference for my faithfilled blogging friends.
I look forward to making new friends and keeping in touch with those who’ve hung in there with me. Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. Please try to check in with me daily and see what’s new – and leave me some encouragement, too!
I will continue to share what I am passionate about as I enter this 8th year of blogging.
As I approach my 8th decade on this earth, I share the love, joy and peace that are mine through faith. I express my gratitude. I seek help with expressions of patience, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. I share ways life is a blessing and ways I have learned to manage the challenges life tosses at us. I write about things I care about (like today’s fire at Notre Dame). Sometimes I write just to entertain. Every now and then I just wanna make you laugh (like Jesus is Walkin’ on Water Again).
I hope my sharing helps and inspires and encourages my followers.
I’m hangin’ in there, and I hope you do, too!
Send seven of your friends this way., will you?
Let’s grow together!
I was headed yesterday to visit a friend who lives about an hour away. Stuck in traffic, waiting for a very long, very slow train to pass, I was getting more and more grumbly. I was late for lunch! I decided drumming my fingers on the steering wheel and complaining was doing no good. I should change my mindset – think about what makes me happy instead.
So, I started this mental activity of alphabetically coming up with a list of things that make me happy. I texted a few to my friend (along with an apology and explanation for why I was late) and finished the list just about the time the looooong train finally finished crossing the intersection:
What Makes Me Happy?
Antelope and Accolades
Birthdays and Beaches
Christmas and Comfort
Dogwoods and Dawn
Easter and Enthusiasm
Friends and Family
Grandkids and Gratitude
Hospitality and Hugs
Integrity and Inspirations
JellyBellies and Justice
Kids and Kisses
Learning and Laughter
Music and Mountains
Neighbors and Nourishment
Opportunities and Oysters (on the half shell)
Puppies and Possibilities
Quiet and Quirkiness
Relaxation and Roses
Scripture and Springtime
Thankfulness and Trust
Understanding and Unconditional Love
Visitors and Vacations
Writing and WordPress
Xander and Xylophones
Yodeling and Yellow
Zoos and Zebras
So, try it! Next time you’re stuck in traffic, instead of grumbling and strumming, think about what makes you happy. You’ll pass the time with a smile instead of a frown, and the train will fly by!
Today is the day Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed for a life-time appointment to the Supreme Court of the USA. It is a day of deep national divide. Many are feeling relief that our right to be “innocent until proven guilty” has been affirmed. Others are feeling emotional despair. On this day of huge chasms, how can we create, maintain and foster a spirit of hope?
Here are three ideas for creating hope in this, our own personal, world of conflict:
1. Let Go
In a heartfelt article in this month’s Daily Word, a devotional published by Unity, I was encouraged today to “let go of trying to change things…, take some deep breaths, and rest in tranquility for a while.”
The devotional referred me to Matthew 11:29, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” I really need that gentle rest for my soul today!
I decided to look and see how that passage was translated in The Message by Eugene H. Peterson. His Study Bible often gives me an insight that the King James or the NIV (New International Version) don’t. Sure enough, in our more modern vocabulary, The Message in Matt. 11:29-30 begins, “Are you tired? Worn out?”
Wow! Yes, after a few days of being drawn into conflicting testimonies, angry shouting, accusations and denials, and crowds protesting, I am tired. I am worn out. I am deeply troubled. I am looking for harmony!
The Message version goes on to say, “Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythm of grace… Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
That’s what we all need! We need to live freely and lightly. We need to enter each day in an unforced rhythm of grace. We need live each day with a renewed sense of hope. Let go!
2. Be Nuts!
This month’s National Geographic magazine had a timely, pertinent article by Anne Lamott titled, “Despite Perils, Decide to Hope.” Her beginning sentence reads, “You would almost have to be nuts to be filled with hope in a world so rife with hunger, hatred, climate change, pollution, and pestilence, let alone the self-destruction or severely annoying behavior of certain people.” But she goes on to tell us that she lives in a state of “boundless hope” most of the time. She must be nuts then, right? How does she do it? She says she lives in hope by being optimistic, trusting, and confident that those she loves will be okay, no matter what.
That’s what we all need! We need to be more optimistic. We need to be more trusting. We need to be more confident that everything is ultimately going to be okay. Let go of what we cannot control. Focus on what we have the ability to change. Start with our own attitudes.
3. Take Action
In this week’s Guideposts magazine there is an article titled, “Heartfelt.” It tells about a Salvation Army crafts project – sewing red hearts. Called “Others,” it began in Bangladesh in 1997 with the goal of helping single women become financially able to support themselves and their children without prostituting themselves. Since its onset, “Others” has helped 1600 women in Bangladesh come out of human trafficking and step into a brighter future. The article was so compelling that I went to the website: guideposts.org/hearts-for-others and donated to the cause. For $10. or more, OTHERS will send you two handmade hearts. My donation will help other women find hope where there is despair.
With the internet and its world-wide reach, there are literally millions of places we can reach out to take action for causes in which we believe – issues for which we feel a deep compassion. Additionally, within our own communities there are dozens of places we can volunteer to offer our services.
Volunteering was one of Ann Lamott’s thrusts in her National Geographic article. She said, “Create goodness in the world and that gives us hope… ” Her examples include helping with school labs, with building water wells, cleaning up estuaries and water sheds. She said by volunteering, we wake “to the momentousness of life – the power of loving hearts.”
In my little town of Ennis with less than a thousand people, I volunteer at our local Food Bank (distributing food to the less fortunate), our Senior Center (working as a sous chef to prepare meals for folks 55 and over who come for nourishment and camaraderie), and at the Madison Valley Medical Center (greeting, answering phones, guiding patients to needed services, fund raising for needed hospital equipment, etc.). Volunteering does indeed give me the opportunity to make a difference where I can … and focus on the areas where I have the power to create goodness.
Creating Hope in a World of Despair
So, how can we adopt an attitude of hope, of optimism, trust, and confidence in a world of conflict? We don’t do it by pointing fingers. We don’t do it by accusations and finding someone else to blame. We don’t do it by closing ourselves in a closet and avoiding exposure. We don’t do it by looking out for #1 and to Hell with the rest of the world! We do it, I believe, by following the greatest commandment. It is the sub-title of my JanBeek blog: Love One Another.
Look for the good. Acknowledge it. Embrace it. Emulate it. Praise it. Tell people how much they matter. Treat others with respect. Listen. Value one another. Give others hope and encouragement. Serve with kindness. Focus on being compassionate. Find your niche. Let your cup overflow. Love One Another. Spill out HOPE!
Tell me one thing you can do this day or this week… just one thing… to create HOPE in our desperate world. Let Go. Be Nuts. Take Action. How will you reach out?
About a year ago I stopped writing in WordPress. My email account associated with it was full and overflowing. The task of keeping up overwhelmed me. Something had to give. So, I just stopped blogging. It’s been a good reprieve.
Then, about a month ago I flew home to Montana from a family reunion in California and brought a cold virus with me. It turned into pneumonia and threw me for a nose dive! I was so zonked by it that whole days went by in my pajamas, too drained to get out of bed or off the couch! I had way too much time to think. My husband got the bug from me. The only difference between my pneumonia and his “walking pneumonia ” was that he was too stubborn to lie down! As soon as he felt better, he went skiing. Relapse! He spent a couple days in his pj’s, too. Then when he felt better, he went skiing again. After the second relapse, he gave himself a week before he was on a ladder, painting the eaves. I gave myself the full month … in fact it’s been five weeks. Finally, I am better. I feel like I am going to survive! God bless the friends who brought food, called, prayed, visited, shopped for me, found good books to keep me entertained and still, and sent cards of encouragement! I am so grateful.
During this time of forced rest, I had time to think. Time to evaluate my life. Time to reprioritize. Time to read one of my favorite WordPress bloggers, Janet Riehl, order and savor her newest book, Sightlines, and time to be inspired by her insights and talents enough to sign up for an eight-week Writers’ Workshop. I’m back! I’m committed to starting a writing project and finishing it. I’m ready to rejoin the world of the living and make my voice heard.
Those footprints are not just ON my heart,
they are IN my heart.
I feel her love deeply.
It keeps me buoyed on days
when I might otherwise be feeling down.
I subscribe to “Someone Cares” cards from Guideposts. I love these cards because they always include a pertinent scripture reference, an uplifting message, and a pertinent story on the back of each.
This last mailing of Guideposts’ cards had the message
I used in my last post, “Whenever we’re together, and even when we’re not, warm and caring thoughts of you make me smile a lot.”
Guideposts “Someone Cares” cards are available at shopguideposts.org/someone-cares-greetings.
I highly recommend them.
They are unique and special.
When I open the package of 12 every 6 weeks or so,
the cards call out the names of friends
for whom I feel that card would be most appropriate.
The back of this particular card
had a wonderful story on it
– written by Lisa Bogart:
“When my best friend came to New York to visit me, I wanted to pack all the sights, food, and fun I could into our four days together.
On the first morning, we took a 10:00 train into Manhattan. We walked crosstown, hopped on the subway, and headed uptown to the Cloisters… then to the Metropolitan Museum of Art… farther downtown to my favorite barbecue place… window-shopped and gawked at the towering buildings. Finally, we took a train home at 10:30 that night.
My friend was pooped and asked if we could stay closer to home the next day. When she came down for breakfast, she had her knitting with her. She suggested we sit on the patio and knit for awhile. I put on a pot of tea, and we spent the morning catching up and renewing our friendship.
We went on a few more adventures before she left, but it was that quiet time together that I remember best. It makes me smile and feel close to her even when we’re miles apart.”
Do you have a special friend who has left footprints in your heart? Why not send a card to them today letting them know you are thinking of them in a special way? Sending snail-mail cards does not have to be a “lost art.” Keep it alive with your footprints today!
I love you, dear WordPress friends.
You leave your footprints in my heart
each time you visit and leave a note.
God bless you!
In today’s Daily Guideposts, contributor Shawnelle Eliasen shared a special moment she had with her “near adult son.” Even though they had experienced some growing gaps and family hurts recently, he invited her to come into the living room and listen to his latest musical creation.
Shawnelle wrote, “This invitation was everything… Finally my son invited me into a tender part of his life. The place where music lives and creativity runs free. A gentle place. A place of peace.”
She thought back to the days when he was young. When his fingers first curled around a pencil and later around a steering wheel. She thanked God for those fingers that now played the beginnings of an original song – and invited her to come along.
Where is your gentle, peaceful, tender place? What or who shares the place where your creativity runs free? Who might you invite to enter – to join you there? Someone who’d love to share your company in that place.