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Archive for the ‘Memories’ Category

Embrace Your Daughter


Are you blessed with a daughter
who is your DollyWolly?
We are!
Today is her 54th birthday.
Happy Birthday, DeAna Laura Beekman Solioz!

Born August 29, 1967, DeAna was given her name
because it was as close as we could come to
having the DeAngeles (my maiden name) carried on.
Just drop the tail on the g and that’s how the spelling
of DeAna came to be.

Here she is with her brother Tyroneeee…
at about one month of age…
always sticking er tongue out!
DeAna and me when she was about 8 or 9 months
What a cute little button nose, huh?
Her second Christmas…
with Santa and brother Ty
I love this picture of her as a 1st or 2nd grader.
Sparkly eyes… healthy new front teeth…
and perky pony tails.
So cute!!
This is such a precious photo of
DeDe with her Grandma Beekman ❤
One of my favorites –
– to show DeDe’s perky smile –
about 8th grade, I think.
Time flies!
And before you know it,
she was getting married –
and would soon move to Switzerland
to live her life there as DeAna Solioz.
But we were very blessed to be able to
put a bottle of our favorite
Runquist wine in our suitcase,
hop a plane, and
spend time in Switzerland with her
every other year
(until COVID)!
Within 6 or 7 years, De and Andre’ had three sons –
and watching Mike, Nick & Chris grow up
has been a wondrous opportunity…
(as they came here every other year
during the first decade of their lives).
DeAna has retained her best buddy
from her days at Downey High in Modesto, CA
(and we have claimed her as or Daughter #2)…
We treasure the times De returns to the states
and we are able to celebrate happy times
together with De and Laina.
(That picture was 2019 before COVID)
.

Recently DeAna had surgery…
and it was hard being a mom
with a daughter so far away
at a time like that.
But I sent her encouragement
and love – like this meme:

And she sent me pictures to reassure me
that she was doing OK.
Thank God for the internet, huh?
Now De and Andre’ have a new restaurant
and (God willing and the Delta variant doesn’t go crazy)
we are going to be able to go there
in October to see them and their place in person.
Happy Birthday, DollyWolly!
We are so grateful to God for
giving us such a wonderful daughter!

If you have the blessing of a daughter
who is a DollyWolly in your life,
embrace her once for me, wouldja?

And have a good night.
See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace Stories


More on the saga of my bruised face!

A friend texted me and suggested,

“The fun part of getting
not one,
but
two black eyes,
is making up some wild,
harebrained event that caused them.

Sky diving accident?

Or when they turn yellow…
trying out for a clown part
in an adaptation of a Stephen King novel.”

I think I could pull off a clown part
in a Stephen King adaptation, don’t you?

I don’t need to wait til they turn yellow…
just match the magenta with my lipstick,
clothing, and earrings,
and (as Derrick suggested)
EMBRACE THE BRUISES!!

It’s getting better – don’t you think?

If you’re just tuning in to this messed up face saga,
I need you to know that I got into a wrestling match
with a tiger – and I won. The tiger
ran off into the woods, never to attack a human again!

And if you believe that, you need to buy my latest novel…
published by Porterhouse … available on your next steak.

If you can’t embrace sunglasses
and hide the damage,
then ya gotta smile and bare it,
right?

And while we’re at it, I have another story to tell you:

You know I’d not be likely to buy a case of beer –
but good wine, now that’s another story!

Now if you think I have any flawless dance moves left in me,
I have a glass of Kool-Aid to sell you.
I have waaaay too many birthday stories to tell –
and a whole lot of receipts for the Kool-Aid I’ve sold.

… especially the body parts around my knees and ankles!
I’ve had my right knee replaced.
How about you,
you got any artificial parts
so they make you go through
the metal scanner at the airport?
Bob & I both get the fun of being frisked
every time we take a trip!

But, we’ve decided flying is a better way to go
instead of driving these days.
Driving requires sitting next to one another
and trying to talk to each other.
After nearly 60 years of marriage,
what’s left to talk about?
On a plane, if you’re lucky,
you get the center aisle –
and somebody new to talk to.

Seeing better was a perk of younger years.
Hearing better is a perk of aging…
but it takes a set of $4000 aids to do it.

As the birthdays pile up,
we have to be sure we have our bifocals
and our hearing aids
before we leave home.

Next it’ll be our walking stick
or a walker!!

Try not to lose your glasses
or your car keys –
That’s one of the problems
we multi-birthday folks have.
But that’s not as bad a losing
your memory.

Did I tell you the story about
how I got these black eyes?
Oh, I did?

It was back on the blog called
EMBRACE HARD HEADS –


Remember?

You don’t?


Oh well…
That’s a story for another day.

Do you have a story to tell?
Come on, be a sport…
Entertain me!

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Old Churches


Photo by gifted photograher, Gerry Mooney

This old church in McAllister, Montana is a treasure! The bell in the dome still rings, though the organ in the church no longer plays and the roof and foundation of it are compromised. It needs a lot of TLC.

Its history goes back to 1885 – when the land was gifted to the Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1887 the structure was completed. It was transferred to the Presbyterian Church (where Bob & I are members) in 1952.

We (as a congregation) love this old church, and many of our members, their friends, and their grandparents or parents or children or grandchildren have been married or baptized there.

Preserving precious old churches such as this one is an ongoing responsibility. It is costly and time-consuming. Respect for what it was and how it served its community in decades past keep us loving those old buildings.

Here are a few others that are treasures in their communities. If only they could talk!

Dilapidated
Sadly abandoned old church
Is God still in there?

Matthew 16:6.
In many ways Matthew chapter 16
is a chapter about the church.
Jesus was the first to mention the church.
He only mentions the church twice,
and both times are here in the book of Matthew.


In Matthew 16:18 Jesus said,
“And I say unto you,
That you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church;
and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”


This is the first time that Jesus used the word church.
He used the word church only twice,
so it is good to know exactly what Jesus taught about the church.
It may be that the things that Jesus taught about church
are the things that are the most important to know about it.

Church is a place to trust in God’s promised presence
( Matthew 18:20)
as we worship Him together,
out of a sense of love and obedience
( Colossians 3:16 ).

When the church is functioning biblically,
it’s more active and alive when the seats are empty,
and the community is filled with those
seeking to activate the gospel in love for each other.

Many of these old churches were also home
to the cemeteries that bear the tombstones
of its deceased members.

What a shame to allow them to
deteriorate and collapse.
But, who has the money
for restoration and maintenance?

Weekly church attendance is down in our society today.
It sometimes downplayed into a legalistic ritual.
According to Pewforum.org, 61% of churchgoers
attend to feel closer to God,
while a sizable majority of non-churchgoers
state they practice their faith in other ways.

Which is the right way?
Modern society may beg us
to believe the choice is ours,
but biblical truth is clear
about going to church.

Jesus Christ seeks in earnest
to meet us on a day set aside
to commemorate His defeat of death,
to equip us to sustain our faith until He returns.

I am so grateful for my friends
who sit in the pews with me every Sunday.
Indeed, they help me sustain my faith.

Old churches remind us of the
value placed on weekly worship
in communities gone by.

Let’s all work to keep our churches
vibrant, healthy, and inviting.
Don’t let it become a place of ruin!

Oh the church in the valley
Is a place I know so well…
Listen to Jim & Jesse
sing to you about it:

Do you have a little old white church in your history?

Embrace the Night


I sit on the porch
In the quiet of the night
Embracing darkness

I sit in my chair
In the quiet of the night
Absent mosquitoes

I sit quietly
Embracing night’s coolness
Praying smoke leaves us

I stare at the sky
Wanting to see the moon shine
Longing for mountains

I know they are there
Behind the smoke and ashes
Muted by the gray

I sit on the porch
Praying for firefighters
In the smoke-filled night

I sit on the porch
In the quiet of the night
Embracing darkness

Come and sit with me!

Good night, dear WordPress friends.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Smell the hov’ring smoke
Hear sleepy birds chirp good night
Feel the peacefulness


I send my true love…
and hold you so tight
In the still of night
Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Swiss Beekeeping


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.

Photo by FRANK MERIu00d1O on Pexels.com

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.

Bob & I wish you a Happy Monday
and a fun-filled, productive week.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Embrace 5 Ways to Keep Long-time Friends


Bob & Victor

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

Look up for your purpose!
Look up to the cross
Recall its loving meaning
Embrace those friendships

5 Ways to Keep Long-time Friends

  1. Pray lovingly for them daily.
  2. Be sure to keep them in your address book and write to them often (don’t just rely on social media)
  3. Pick up the phone and talk to them, emptying yourself into them… it’s an investment. Be loyal and be confidential.
  4. 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.
  5. 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?

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Your Last Best Place


Embrace your last best place
It’s where you call your “Forever Home.”
It’s the place you’re destined to stay
When you decide to land – not roam.

“Our Last Best Place” is written on
Our Montana license plates.
It’s a motto for Bozeman,
But Ennis is our place that rates.

It rates a forever stay.
It’s where we want to be
Until it’s time to eventually
Leave for Eternity.

Our neighbors have a sign –
It says home is a collection.
It says home is a story –
One with happy recollection.

I say home is a heartfelt
Place where love is true –
A place where when you have you go there,
They always have room for you.

It’s a place where happy memories
Have seeped into the wall
And everywhere you look,
Is a story to recall.

Grandpa DeAngeles’ cheese press
(or is it an apple press – I wonder)
Reminds me of my dad who had
These treasures out in rain & thunder!

We had the piece restored
And found a grape press to match.
They sit in dining room corners –
This one came without a scratch!

If rocking chairs could talk
This would have stories galore.
Bob’s great-grandma used it
And our grandkids rocked some more.

This clock has a great history –
It hung in Bob’s mother’s school.
That was back in 1908-16
His mom was certainly no fool.

When the school house caught fire
And the kids were evacuated,
A lot of stuff ended in a pile.
His mom saved this… she was elated.

The clock is not the only thing
We inherited from our folks.
Our house is full of those memories –
Full of love and life and hopes.

The horseshoe has a history –
The mortar Dad found in Merced River does, too.
The pestle that goes with it
Has seen more than a grind or two!

The books that line the living room
Have stories – some written by friends,
And the picture from Grimentz
Has Swiss memories without ends.

I love the little angels
On tables, counters and floor.
Each one has a story
And there’s always room for more.

That first one is from Terry,
A friend who has my heart.
The next one’s from our Laina –
It’s meant for garden art.

Up in my sanctuary,
There’s an angel in a dish.
She’s playing the accordion –
And she came with a great wish:

I wish you happy memories
In this “Last Best Place” of yours.
I know you’ll live here happily,
Welcoming strangers through your doors.

It’s true, we love our Last Best Place –
And we’ve welcomed many a guest.
And we’re not through inviting them –
Come – sit with us – we’re truly blessed!

Embrace Your Last Best Place

Are you in it now?
Or do you anticipate where it will be…
the one on earth, that is…

Tell me about it!

See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Roy Rogers was my favorite as a kid…
And never did I imagine I’d
find a Home on the Range
where the deer and the antelope play
as my Last Best Place
someday.
Yup, antelope…. right here in my Last Best Place

Embrace Fellowship


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!!

Dining at Sidewinders in Bozeman

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!

Family time in Placerville

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!!

EMBRACE FELLOWSHIP

IT’S GIFT FROM GOD!

Happy Bob with his big catch!
Catch and Release!!
Fellowship with Fish!!

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.)

See you 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 Loving Memories


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.

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