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Archive for the ‘pets’ Category

Embrace Birthdays (stay 39!)


Dear Friends,

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.

How about you?

http://www.janbeek.blog/embrace-aging

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?

My great-grandson, Xander, needs my love and joy,
and I need patience, kindness and gentleness in abundance!

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 …)

Bob, our new friend, Jan (me), Monika & Ty –
Pretty sky, huh?
That’s our son, Ty, with me
We enjoyed the fun of chatting with our son & Moni while we waited.
Back home we found a wonderful
bottle of wine waiting for us –
a gift from our dear neighbors.
Thank you, Charlie & Janet!
Birthday roses from my granddaughter –
Thank you, Hope and Drew!
Flowers from our friends, Kathy & Ron-
with a really cute card!
Such fun! So nice of them!
Happy Birthday wishes from our #2 daughter, Laina…
I loved hearing her sing to me – from Maryland to Montana ❤
And our #1 daughter, DeAna, sang Happy Birthday and
sent us a picture of her beautiful flowers at
their restaurant in Switzerland.
Lovely, huh?

Sunday afternoon Bob, Ty & Monika went kayaking/paddleboarding while TazE & I found a shady spot and relaxed.

TazE found some cool grass and took a nap until…
Eloise and her Grandma Susie came.
With such good company, I put my book aside
and TazE left the shade to get acquainted.
It was a smokey day in the Madison Valley…
Lots of forest fires in the area –
and the wind blows the smoke into our
little piece of Paradise on Earth.

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!

My friend, Caroline Feldman, took this photo
at Ennis Lake last year with the swans clustered.
Here’s my photo taken from that same area
at Ennis Lake last winter…
See, you’re supposed to see the mountains!
Meantime, the paddleboarders returned –
And we returned home
to enjoy our last evening together.
Ty & Monika left this morning…
Thank you, Dear Ones,
for coming to help make
my 82nd birthday so memorable and special.
Now TazE and I are stretched out,
relaxing, and looking forward to an evening
watching the Olympic swimmers.

What are you doing this Monday evening besides surfing the net?

It was a very Happy Birthday…
Forever 39 at heart…
Thanks to all the friends who sent greetings.
I love you!

See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace God’s Grip


Do you ever tell yourself, “Get a grip!”??

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!

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Romans 8:38-39

“ 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!

GG (Great Grandma Jan) with Xander

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!

Sienna & Hope
(my great-granddaughter and my granddaughter)

My great-granddaughter, Sienna,
gets a grip on her mommy, my granddaughter, Hope.
When children have a hold on loving, devoted parents, God smiles.

Sienna with Ty

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.

Sienna with Monika

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.

Hope, TazE, Sienna, and me

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!

Monika, Sienna, Hope and Bob

Not every family has the privilege of gathering 4 generations together!
Get a grip on longevity … and the joy of embracing great-grandpa!

Xander and TazE

Such fun to see TazE getting along so well with Xander!

Xander decided he needed to get a grip on those puzzle skills, too.

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!

Time for
me
to get some rest, too.



Never doubt that
you can rest in God’s Grip!!

Yes, He’s gotcha covered…

See ya tomorrow (God willing) –

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Montana Vistas


Here is the Madison Valley and Range
as seen from the Gravelly Range

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.

This field of flowers is irrigated –
so they’re not the “wildflowers”
we were looking for.
See that line up the mountain?
That’s where we are headed.
We drove the pick-up with trailer
to the base of our destination
and took the ATV up from there.
Julie & Zeke rode in the back.
TazE sat in my lap.
Bob’s the driver.
TazE enjoyed the views.
That mountain above TazE’s head
is called the Sphinx.

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.

Zeke was quite interested in the beauty
of the Madison Valley vistas.
This is Caroline’s tree!
We always think of her when we see it.
Caroline loves tree skeletons!
As we climbed, the clouds moved
out from the Madison Range
and began to cover the valley.

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.

I can’t remember the name of this hairy wildflower.
Isn’t it interesting?

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.

Julie took our photo,
and while we were distracted,
Zeke went out exploring.
Zeke found some wet, runny cow poop
and thought it was great fun to roll in it!

Like I said, there were more cows than wild flowers,
so of course, there were plenty of places
for an inquisitive pup to explore!!

Julie was intrigued by some of the leaves.
I walked beyond the closed gate and
took this photo of the US Forest Service sign
and the field of wildflowers beyond it.
They were more brilliant than this photo shows.

Heading back down the mountain, the cows bellowed at us!
They were not happy that we were disturbing their peace.

TazE continued to enjoy the views with us.
The sprinkler systems keep the fields green
in spite of our near drought conditions.

The storm clouds threatened … and we got a few raindrops on our way back to the pickup.

See the squall on the other side of the valley?
You can see that it is raining there.

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!

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Family Time


Embrace family time
Our relatives are God’s gifts
Cherish time with them!

Bob & me with our son, Ty,
his wife, Monika, & son, Sam,
and her parents, Ruthie & Darrell,
and our grand-nephew, Liam

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!

Cosette in the puppy pool

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!

  1. A view of Lake Tahoe
  2. Jan & Bob at the lake
  3. Monika & Ty (the gracious hosts)
  4. Liam & Jodie (my niece & grand-nephew)
  5. 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

Cosette on horsey

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.

Cousins – Liam & Sam

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.

Cheers!
Have a great rest of your week.

I’ll see you tomorrow (God willing).

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Need


When you think of the word, NEED, what comes to mind?
Do you think of what YOU need or what OTHERS might need?
Have you internalized the difference between NEED and WANT?

Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

Often “Wanted” signs express what someone thinks is a NEED.
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Daily there are folks who think they NEED
their Starbucks coffee first thing each morning
or they can’t get through the day.
Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels.com

T’was a time when folks thought they NEEDED
toilet paper stacked up in their garages.
Photo by Dziana Hasanbekava on Pexels.com

Now there’s a belief in some parts of the USA
that gas cans NEED to be filled and waiting for future use.
Because of a security breach, stations were shut down.
Folks NEEDED gas to get to their jobs or wherever…



What is on your NEEDS list?

I NEED hugs.
Physical touch is sooo important!
My husband thinks he NEEDS ice cream after dinner each night.

Learning the Difference
Between Necessity and Luxury

When our son, Ty, graduated from high school, he spent a year as an AFS (American Field Service) foreign exchange student in what was then Yugoslavia. He lived with a family who was communist. They wanted their son to learn English because the next year he intended to travel to the USA to attend college.

The family was “well off” by that country’s standards. The father was head of what we might call our EPA: “Environmental Protection Agency.” They lived in a small (less than 500 square feet) apartment in Beograd (Belgrade). The family of four had two bedrooms (one for the parents and one for their daughter), a very small kitchen, one bathroom, and a living room which converted into a bedroom at night for their son. Ty shared that space with the son.

Our son learned very quickly how very privileged he was growing up with us in California with plenty of space and a swimming pool in the back yard. He learned overnight the difference between necessity and luxury. He learned his NEEDS were much smaller than he once thought – and people could live happily with soooo much less.

We all NEED a friend-
and if you have a true friend,
you are rich, indeed!

Happiness does not NEED a big house, a fancy car, or a lotta money in the bank.
But, it does NEED at least one true friend… and a bunch of ’em is a bonus!!

Happiness does not need a room full of toys.
Children who can build their own tent,
play together in the woods,
and go home at the end of the day of play
to a loving family
and a nourishing meal
are blessed indeed!

I used to think that I NEEDED
a glass of wine and a sushi meal
every now and then…

… or a cucumber roll

But then I googled my needs and I discovered:

Hah! What do you NEED?

A pup to snuggle with?
All you NEED for Christmas
is your two front teeth?
Maybe all you need is
a blanket and a good book!
Sometimes all I NEED
is a nice warm bath!!
A baby only needs
milk, loving hugs, a clean body,
and a swaddling cloth!

And we all need a dream –
Someone who believes in us –
and encourages us –
and teaches us how
to live our dreams.

I NEED time in the wide open spaces,
time each morning in my sanctuary to pray
and to ask the Holy Spirit for guidance,
and I NEED music in my life…
because it lifts my spirits and strengthens me.

I don’t NEED a tattoo!
But, isn’t that a hoot?
I NEED laughter!

Hah!

See ya tomorrow.
Have a great rest of your day
wherever you are.

Embrace NEEDS.
See the needs of others –
and fulfill them if you can!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
I NEED your comments!

What are your NEEDS?

Embrace Hugs


Doesn’t it feel good to meet with your friends
Who have had both their COVID-19 vaccines
And feel comfortable hugging again?
Don’t lose sight of what hugging means:

When I hug you my squeezing says,
“I love you! I have missed our touch.”
When I hug you my body says,
I am so happy to be near you. I’ve missed you so much!

Song of Solomon 2:6

“Let his left hand be under my head
And his right hand embrace me.”

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Sometimes the hugs from our pets
Have to take the place of others we love –
But it’s that feeling of unconditional caring
That’s wrapped in a hug – whether human or dove.

Photo by Selegna Du00edaz on Pexels.com

Mark 10:16

And He took them in His arms and began blessing them, laying His hands on them.

Your hug is so important
Better than an alligator hug is:
… a kitty kiss!
Better than a piggy hug and kiss is:
… a real bear hug! (Or is it??)
There’s nothing quite like a threesome hug!

Genesis 33:4

Then Esau ran to meet him and embraced him,
and fell on his neck and kissed him…

Yes, when we see a cuddly little soft and sweet baby
We just want to hug and squeeze and kiss them all over!
Photo by Madeline Bassinder on Pexels.com
Photo by William Fortunato on Pexels.com
Photo by Rheza Aulia on Pexels.com


Embrace One Another
Embrace Hugs

It’s so good to be able to hug again!

Love to you,
my sweet blogging friend.

See ya tomorrow

Embrace Animal Photography


Magpie – A Haiku

by JanBeek

Cloudy break of day
A large, angry magpie dives
Down on peaceful dove

Photo by shravan khare on Pexels.com
Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Best Friends

A pup and kitty
Best friends – inseparable
Love that matching pair

Simple Love

Tucked under your chin
I feel completely secure
It’s true, simple love

Watching

Watching for a friend
Positioned so demurely
Aren’t I attractive?

Fawn is Flower

Tucked in beautifully
Fawn waits patiently for Mom
Remember Flower?

Beautiful Buck

Beside the lake’s edge
A beautiful buck listens
Are you thirsty, too?

Embrace Animal Photography

Embrace animals
And those who photograph them
They’re a happy lot

I hope my animal photographs
Most of which are taken by an anonymous photographer
Made you smile the way this darling baby and her pup are smiling
They certainly cheered me!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.

Have a Fabulous Friday.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)!

Embrace Haibun


There are days when it seems harder than others to put on a happy face, don’t you agree? I don’t have a lot of those, so when I do, they usually are memorable.

I remember one such day when my dad was out of sorts. He was a business owner. Not the typical image of a “business owner” that comes to mind when you hear that description. His business was a Tallow Works. Do you know what that is? It’s a place that picks up dead animals from farmers and ranchers and meat scraps from butcher shops. All parts of those animals and scraps are processed. It’s a smelly business.

It’s devastating
Beloved animals die
Someone hauls them off

This is called a Haibun. It is a brief couple of paragraphs of prose, followed by a Haiku that adds dimension to the prose!

Oh, Lordy, Lordy!! My blog is supposed to share love, joy, peace, faith, and unity. How I got off on a kick of wanting to share various forms of poetry is all Dwight Roth’s fault! Blame him! He tried my Shadorma poetry and invited me to try his Haibun.

https://rothpoetry.wordpress.com/2021/04/08/on-fire/

But he can’t be blamed for my morbid Haibun and photo today. My mind just went there after reading a post by someone who was recalling a sadness from their childhood. That day when Dad and I went to pick up a dead horse sticks in my memory because the horse was a child’s pet. It wasn’t like one of a herd of beef cattle or some old cow that got into the clover field, ate too much, bloated, and bit the dust!

My experiences with my dad, riding with him on weekends as we went to various farms to pick up the dead animals, usually were not sad times. I treasured one-on-one time with Daddy, and I was happy to get that time under whatever circumstances! The death of animals didn’t seem morbid to me. It was just part of the cycle of life! You know – like egg to tadpole, froglet to frog!

But on that particular Saturday, the animal’s young owner was there, crying as Dad hauled her beloved horse into the truck and we drove away. The horse did not represent the cycle of life. It was too young, and so was its owner! That was a day when it was harder to put on a happy face, you know?

This weekend Bob & I are headed to my brother-in-law’s funeral. He was 86. He led a good life. He was a believer who knew where he was headed when he left this earth. But, he had just had a knee replacement – just a week before – and he thought he had a lot of years left to enjoy the greater mobility that knee would give him. However, it is not our privilege to count our days!

Dying is, indeed, part of the cycle of life!

“Everyone who lives
and believes in me
will never die.
Do you believe this?”

— John 11:26

S’pose that horse and sweet little girl will be reunited in Heaven?

It’s the life cycle
Beloved animals die
Are they in Heaven?

Bye for now.
See ya tomorrow –
God willing!

JanBeek

Wrdless Wednesday


Embrace Questioning


Embrace Questioning!
Do we embrace all questions?
Like, “Are you stupid?”

No, it’s not questions,
But the act of questioning
That deserves embrace.

Not all questions are
Developed with pure motives.
Embrace those that are!

Embrace a pure heart
Full of inquisitiveness.
Ask because you care.

When you meet someone
Ask their name and remember –
Use it lovingly.

Ask about their life.
Listen with sincere interest.
Listening’s a gift.

Questioning’s one thing;
Listening is another.
They go hand in hand.

When I think of questioning with a pure motive and listening with an open heart, I think of Job. Even if you are not a Christian, seeped in the Bible stories, you have heard the expression, “The patience of Job.” (That’s pronounced Jobe… not job, like Steve Jobs, the American business magnate). What made the prophet, Job, come to mind?

Job is presented in the Bible as a good and prosperous family man who is beset by Satan with God‘s permission with horrendous disasters that take away all that he holds dear, including his children, his health, and his property. He struggles to understand his situation and begins a search for the answers to his difficulties. Searching for answers involves questioning. He does so without condemning God. He maintains his trust in God to ultimately work for his good – even when he is in the worst of his turmoil.

What a desolate looking man!
What must he be saying to God?
What questions would you be asking?

What does Job ask God?
“He demands answers from God Himself. Job wants to know why bad things happen to good people. He knows it’s not right, and will not accept the saccharine answers of his friends.”

God, “Why Have You Made Me Your Target”? (Job 7:20)

God explains to Job that to us mere mortals sometimes there are no words—no rationalizations—that can make sense of the unhappiness we endure.

Trauma happens and we have to accept it. Explanations may make us feel better, but they mislead. Ultimately, Job, like all of us, must endure suffering not knowing why … or if the question even counts.

Once Job accepts this, he somehow manages to live with his trauma without becoming its victim.

The Book of Job asks “why good people suffer,” but never actually answers the question. What it does do, is correct misconceptions about why we suffer. The truth of this wonderful tale is that man can’t know everything. 

Again, let me repeat, “Once Job accepts this, he somehow manages to live with his trauma without becoming its victim.”

How does this story relate to your life and mine?
Have you ever questioned why life was
throwing stones at you that you didn’t deserve?

Or have you questioned why you didn’t get a job that you knew you deserved?

This happened recently to my son. He applied for a job that he knew he was qualified for. Another person was chosen instead. He got a form letter of rejection. Instead of falling into a fit of depression or raging in disbelief, he called the person who did get the job and congratulated her. He asked if there was anything he could do to support her in her assignment – and he asked her to keep an eye out in case she saw a position in the future for which she thought he might be a good fit.

Within a day, he received a call back and an extension of his responsibilities was offered along with a significant pay raise.

Now, I’m not suggesting that every time you ask the right questions with the right motive, you’ll get a pay raise!

No, it’s not that simple. But, what embracing questioning does is it changes your focus. The right questions – in the right spirit – make the difference between misery and openness. The difference between depression and expression. The difference between pessimism and positivity.

Embrace a pure heart
Full of inquisitiveness.
Ask because you care.

Don’t question, “Why you?”
Instead ask, “What can I do?”
“Can I be of any help?”

Your attitude counts.
Humility is the key.
Embrace questioning!

My son posted this meme
the day before his interview.

God is good.
All the time!
Even to the Jobs of this world!
Be patient in love.
Your pay raise is coming!!

Hah!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
Got any questions??
See ya tomorrow.

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