Loving One Another

Archive for the ‘Life and Death’ Category

Mom’s Sunrise


Today is my mom’s birthday. She’d be 104 today. I woke early and was greeted by this gorgeous sunrise peeking over the beautiful Madison Range.

As I zoomed in on it, it became more vibrant.

Orange was my mom’s favorite color. Good morning, Mom! I see you smiling down from heaven. I remember your best days, and set aside the years when Alzheimer’s robbed you of the sparkle, the tenacity, and the wisdom that marked your best days.

Mom & Dad’s wedding picture 1937
Mom & Dad’s 30th Anniversary
Mom wore her Rebekah Lodge badges with honor and dignity.

Always involved in activities, Mom loved the Rebekahs (female branch of the Odd Fellows), and her bridge club, which weekly met in our living room. Even into her 80’s she loved her 20-Ands Club. She represented a lot of “Ands.” She was an impeccable dresser, beautifully groomed. Managed always to stay fit. She was probably the person who invented the “Selfie”!!

I wrote this poem on December 18, 2004 with Mom in mind. I used phrases she spoke in her last weeks on earth. She was big on giving orders – right up to her last days – even telling God when to take her “home.” She died the day after I composed this, on December 19th.

Before I Die

Before I leave this earth
I have a few requests
Listen up, my dears,
Tomorrow there’ll be tests.

Take my diamond necklace
And convert it into cash.
Use it for my funeral,
Then live life within the dash.

It’s too late for me, friends,
To change the things I’ve done;
But you have time to listen
And teach others of God’s Son.

“The Dash” is all the years
Between death and when you die.
Those in-between years
Are where your stories lie.

Take my gold and silver,
Go out and help the poor.
Make amends for all the years
I lived from store to store.

Take my many angels,
Give them to folks who are
Ill, hurting, or lonely.
Tell them about the star:

The star of Bethlehem that
Was where the angels went
To see the newborn baby –
Our Lord from Heaven sent.

Take my many clothes and find
Folks who are in need.
Take the food that I have stashed.
Go to the hungry. Feed!

Take my shoes and slippers.
Take them all and give
Them to the cold and homeless.
Help them to warmer live.

Take my chairs and tables,
The lamps and bedding, too.
Give them to a Home or Mission.
They’ll help out quite a few.

Then look around your house, friends.
And see the excess treasure.
Take it to the needy.
You’ll be blessed beyond all measure.

Live your life within the dash
In loving generosity.
Before you leave this earth,
Reach out in pure humility.

Take your gold and silver.
Go out and help the poor.
God will bless you richly, and
You will never want for more.

Her diamond necklace DID pay for her funeral!

And we did give most of her angels away – my friend/former student, Lorei, hung them with a note on the doorknobs of the other residents at her care facility where mom lived. Mom had dozens of angels in her collection! And, we gave her clothes and other “stuff” to the people and places that could use them.

However, I have a few of her angels in my “Sanctuary” upstairs. My maiden name is “DeAngeles” (translates to “of angels” – in Italian). Mom lives in me… and today I celebrate her sunrise, her best qualities, and the gifts she instilled in me: self-confidence, unconditional love, tenacity, and a love of poetry.

Happy Birthday, Mom!
I am “Living in the Dash” just as you taught me.

What qualities did your mom instill in you??

Have a blessed Friday, my friends.
See ya later.

What is Heaven Like?


Photo by Min An on Pexels.com

If you’ve followed my blog for a week or more,
You know that I attend the Presbyterian Church
in Ennis, Montana each Sunday, and I take sermon notes.
I take them in poetry – that’s just the way my brain
filters the message as I hear it.
It helps me listen, and remember,
and share with Bob when we get home.

Today’s sermon by our pastor, Rev. Steve Hundley, was
titled, “What is Heaven Like?”
Here’s my take-away on it:

If Heaven is as it should be,
Then I’m gonna sit on the bank
Of a beautiful river with my rod
And thank God for every yank.

But I know Heaven is beyond
My wildest imagination.
I know it’ll be flowing with life,
With no death, tears or stagnation.

I’m gonna ask God for help to
Understand what Heaven is like;
And since I have a Harley here,
I’m gonna ask if I’ll have my bike.

I’m gonna ask God for help to
Understand how I’ll recognize
The loved ones who went before me.
Will I know ’em when I look in their eyes?

Our Bible assures us that we
Will experience joy beyond bounds,
So I’m sure I’ll know the angels
Who’ll welcome me with glorious sounds.

I know I’ll be healed and whole
In Eternity with those I love.
So, Heaven will be as it should be
When I join my Lord in Heaven above.

When I get to Heaven, I’m gonna
Run and leap like a frisky deer.
So, when I leave this earth, friends,
Don’t weep, don’t cry; Take joy and cheer!

Bikers will find their Harley, and …
I’ll meet my Bostons there!
And Jesus will meet me at the Pearly Gates!

It’ll be Thanksgiving
with all our loved ones gathered ’round,
and it’ll feel like a Homecoming!

What do you think?
Will you be flying solo?

Hah!
See ya tomorrow.

A Daughter’s Tribute


In the center of this photo is Marcelle Zufferey. To her left is her dear daughter, Sylvianne, who wrote the tribute below. On Marcelle’s right is her beautiful granddaughter, Lorianne.

Family Connections

Sylviane (we call her Syli) is our “Swiss Daughter.” She lived with us for a year in California when she was 17 or 18. The next year our daughter, DeDe, went to Switzerland for a year and lived in Syli’s family. Marcelle was such a loving, compassionate guide. Our daughter fell in love with Syli’s cousin, Andre’ (who became our son-in-law)… and to say De needed guidance is putting it mildly! God bless Marcelle and her husband, Antoine, for their loving understanding.

This last couple of years Marcelle has been in a care facility. That dreaded disease, Alzheimer’s, captured her memory and her health. Syli was there to spend quality time with her almost every day.

The Tribute

DeDe’s “Swisster” wrote this tribute to her mom in French (her native language). It was translated by Facebook and posted today. Some of the words may be translated strangely, but the beautiful sentiment is clear:

“Mom… you went to join dad this afternoon on his birthday.

I was able to accompany you to your last breath.

Thank you for giving us so much love.

For passing us through your eyes and your beautiful smile the meaning of family, respect and love.

You are part of the love of each of us.

From up there with dad you can be proud …

We had the extraordinary chance to have you as parents.

For having you as a mom, grand mom and great grand mom.

You are in my heart my little mom, I love you

And even if i will miss your beautiful eyes and your smile deeply, I know that now you don’t suffer anymore and that with dad you are forever present in our hearts.”

An Acrostic

I wrote this acrostic today as my tribute to this special lady… remembering her as she will always live in my heart:

M arvelous
A wesome
R adiant
C ompassionate
E mbraceable
L ovable
L oyal
E ndearing

Marcelle and me – circa 1985

Rest in peace, Marcelle. I love you.

Will you write an acrostic using your name and describing yourself? I’d love to see it. Mine would be:
J oyful
A nimated
N atural (or maybe “Nutcase”??)

See ya tomorrow. Have a good night.

Dancing in Heaven


I danced in the morning

While the moon lay low

I danced at the sunrise

While the winds began to blow

I danced in the noontide

When it started slow to snow

And I danced in the evening

In the sunset’s glow

sunset from Welnas

Dance, dance,

Wherever you may go;

Dance and spread love

To everyone you know.

Dance, dance with a joyful heart –

Go, dance now… it’s a good time to start.

 

Marcelle Zufferey is dancing in Heaven with her husband, Antoine, today!

Today is Antoine’s birthday!! He went to his eternal home a couple of decades ago. Marcelle suffered this last couple of years from that awful disease, Alzheimer’s, that robs us of our minds – our memories. But, right to the end, she was that beautiful, blue-eyed mother who gave her children everything they needed for a full life.  She is the mother of our 1980-81 AFS student, Christian Zufferey, and his sister, Sylviane, who lived with us for a year in 1983-84. Our daughter DeDe, married their first cousin, Andre’. That’s why DeAna is a Swiss citizen and our 3 grandsons were born and raised in that beautiful country. We owe Marcelle a deep debt of gratitude! Our hearts go out to the Zufferey and Solioz families today, as we mourn their loss. But we know they are faith believers … and they recognize God’s perfect timing in this earthly departure.

I can play a Swiss polka today … and celebrate the reunion of Marcelle and Antoine.

Dance, my friends. Heaven awaits, and God’s timing always is perfect!

See ya tomorrow.

Difficult Day – 9-11


pexels-photo-1655998.jpeg

Photo by anna on Pexels.com

“Today was a Difficult Day,” said Pooh.  

There was a pause.  

“Do you want to talk about it?” asked Piglet.  

“No,” said Pooh after a bit. “No, I don’t think I do.”  

“That’s okay,” said Piglet, and he came and sat beside his friend.  

“What are you doing?” asked Pooh.

 

“Nothing, really,” said Piglet. “Only, I know what Difficult Days are like. I quite often don’t feel like talking about it on my Difficult Days either.  

“But goodness,” continued Piglet, “Difficult Days are so much easier when you know you’ve got someone there for you. And I’ll always be here for you, Pooh.”  

And as Pooh sat there, working through in his head his Difficult Day, while the solid, reliable Piglet sat next to him quietly, swinging his little legs…he thought that his best friend had never been more right.  

Mental Health Matters

This is National Suicide Prevention Week. Do you have a friend who needs you to just sit there and be a quiet supporter? Reach Out!

Let’s just love one another.

See ya later!

Gotta Love Bees!


Gotta Love Honeybees

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!

Have you hugged a honeybee today?

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.

Producing honey is not all 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.

Just look at those pollen packs!!

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 create honey for their food

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!

What flower would you want to bee?

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!

The End!

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!

See ya later, Honey!

Blessings Amidst Tragedy


Blessings > Problems

My heart is aching
In the midst of mass shootings
National Problem

Crazed shooter

My life is blessed and I am grateful,
But how can I rejoice as others cry?
How do I count my blessings
While watching innocent people die?

My heart aches for the dear ones
Who have needlessly lost loved lives.
This week was a sad time in our country –
Gone are daughters, sons, husbands, wives.

The national problem of violence,
Assault weapons in the hands of the sick,
Makes me want to write or call our leaders
And demand solutions to the issues – quick!

No way should one man in the Senate
Have the right to singularly block
A measure the House of Representatives passed
And sent to be voted on… at least to have a talk!

Gun violence is exacerbated
By the proliferation of guns of war
In the hands of unstable citizens.
It’s got to stop. Tolerate it no more!!!

Universal background checks
Have got to be a must!
Sales of weapons must be given
Only to the folks we can trust!

I’m not against a hunting rifle
And I think handguns have their place,
But magnums with rapid-fire magazines
Are not for ordinary citizens. It’s a disgrace!

My life in rural Montana
Is a sheltered one, I know.
My blessings outnumber my problems
And I live in a loving glow.

But I’m affected by the violence,
By the deaths and hate and crime.
I don’t live in a bubble.
The fears of this nation are also mine.

See ya tomorrow
(God willing)

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