Loving One Another

Archive for the ‘Memories’ Category

My Sis, Sally, Died Today


Me with Mom and Sally

Today my sis, Sally, died.
She was only a year and a half older than I.
As children, Mom often dressed us alike.
People thought we were twins.

As adults we looked so much alike, too, that our long-time friends sometimes called me Sally.

When you lose your only sibling,
A part of you dies with her.
Sally came every Thanksgiving from CA
To spend the holiday with us in Montana.

Sally with oregano

Sally always came with an extra suitcase.
She filled it with oregano that grew in her back yard.
She spent most of the week here at the kitchen table or counter
Picking the leaves off the oregano stems.

I have a couple of quart jars left of her herbs.
When they are gone, another part of her
Will disappear – You can’t find oregano that fresh –
Not in a store, that’s for sure! Can you smell it?

Sally with our son, Ty’s kids

Sally was a nut about holidays!
She had a closet full of clothes
Sorted by the holiday they represented
And she loved every one of them.

She joined her nieces and nephews
For Halloween and Christmas,
For Easter and birthdays, and
For special lunches and dinners.

Sam, Faith, Hope and Jordan with Aunt Sally at Burger King
Sally loved giving gifts and playing games
Sally & Jordan shared a Dec. 20th birthday
They continued to share even as Jordan entered his teens and young adult years.
Bonnie was Sally’s best friend. They enjoyed many River Cats games together.
Sally & Ty

Naturally Sally was there to celebrate her daughter, Jodie’s wedding.
Here she is at the wedding reception, dancing with her nephew,
our son, Ty, the daddy of those nieces and nephews.
And she was there of course, for her grandson, Liam’s baptism.

Bill & Jodie Welge (Sally’s dughter) and their infant son, Liam

Sally loved spending time with her grandson, Liam.
During the last few years of her life, she moved
from California to PA to be near her daughter, son-in-law,
and her dear grandson, Liam.

Besides her family and holidays, Sally had a love of dogs.
She inherited her poodle, Gigi, from our mom after Mom died.
Gigi was stolen from Sally when Gigi was about 4 years old.
Gigi was gone nine years, but Sally never gave up the idea of
finding her!

Sally & Gigi

Sure enough, nine years after the theft, Sally received a call from a veterinarian.
Gigi had a chip, and when she was found wandering, dirty, toothless, and infected,
the person who found her brought her to a vet. The chip had Sally’s number.
Can you imagine her joy at that reunion after nine long years? Gigi lived to be 15.
Dear friends of ours here adopted her and gave her a loving last 9 months of life
when Sally moved to PA and could not take Gigi with her to the Masonic Home.

Sally & Jodie at Christmas in Pennsylvania
Sally with me at Christmas in California
Can’t deny we’re sisters, can we?
Last Thanksgiving in Sewickley, PA

Although Alzheimer’s robbed my sis of her memory and ultimately of her ability to converse, she was tuned in and enjoyed the concert Liam and I presented in her nursing home last Thanksgiving. I am so glad Bob & I were able to go – and we had that time with her. My life is filled with wonderful memories of times we shared together.

I’m pregnant with Ty – Bob’s next to Sally & Dave with Denise
and that’s our Mom & Dad in front
Bob & me with Sally & Dave – one Easter waaaay back when!

Sally had a life filled with service to others through her church, the Hospital Auxiliary, the Girl Scouts (she led a troop for at least 50 years) and her favorite organizations, Rebekahs and Eastern Star.

Her life also was one of tragedy (her oldest daughter died at age 19 and her husband, Dave, was only 60 when he died suddenly and unexpectedly of a heart attack). But Sally was a trooper. She continued to volunteer and give of her time and talents to others.

I was blessed to grow up with a sister who had such a big, giving heart,
She will be missed by all of us who loved her. But her spirit will live on.

Sally and Jan
at my daughter, DeAna’s wedding in 1987

I know her spirit will recognize mine when I join her in Heaven someday.
Meantime, rest in peace, dear Sis. I will carry your love with me always.

Thanks for visiting today my friends.
Treasure every sunrise.
Enjoy every sunset.
Tell your siblings how much you love them.

See ya tomorrow, God willing!
JanBeek

Change Poetry to Prose


We were invited by dVerse Poetry to write a Prosery.

I forgot that prose is not written in poetry format. I wrote my 144 words as a poem. Let me change it to prose for the sake of following the instructions!!

Written for Monday’s Prosery prompt at dVerse.
Kim hosts today, asking us to include the line “From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time” in a piece of flash fiction, exactly 144 words in length. The line is from D. H. Lawrence’s poem Humming Bird.

Ole Tom

We see Ole Tom with his bent shoulders and thinning torso. We see his wind-weathered face and his thinning gray hair. He sits in my living room strumming his guitar, singing the fourteenth verse of an old folk song. He has a thousand such songs tucked into his head, along with the entire books of Matthew and Acts.

We see him as an ancient sage. We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time. His mind is sharper than mine ever was, and he shows no signs of stopping.

Each Christmas Ole Tom recites the Christmas story from the book of Acts, never reading, just expounding, amazing the congregation with his masterful memory. His is the epitome of a wise man: Ninety-three going on thirty. Never see him as old and never underestimate Ole Tom. Turn that telescope around!

Bob, Jan & Tom
New Years Eve, 2011

Now you have been told which “line” was dictated to be used… did you guess it in the previous form where it was two lines in the poem?

Whenever I see or hear a guitar,
I always think of Tom.
And I never looked at him through the wrong end of a telescope!

Thanks for checking back in
to see poetry changed to prose.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Try Tanaga


‘Tanaga’ is a traditional Filipino poetic form comprising four lines of 7 syllables with an AAAA rhyming sequence. I learned about it today at:

https://jemverse.wordpress.com/2020/09/18/six-poetics-5-tanaga/

I decided to give Tanaga a try. You might enjoy having a go at it, too. Since my JanBeek topic is about Loving One Another, I decided to use love as my Tanaga rhyme.

For my country I have love
It’s not peaceful like a dove
Democracy needs a shove
We need help from God above

I need a yard sign that reads
Love is all the help one needs.
“Unity is Power” Plant seeds.
Turn off all divisive feeds.

Love, unity, and respect
Go farther than you suspect.
Wear them so others detect
The LOVE than others neglect.

Have a Fabulous Friday.
TGIF is my day
To stand for the straight and gay
In UNITY every day!

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Just Love One Another – Say:
“Do it the Tanaga Way!”
Poetry tells you what may
Spill from your dear heart today.

Photo by ATC Comm Photo on Pexels.com

How will you show your love today?
Try it with Tanaga!

Oh, by the way,
I told you Bob’s former student, Peter, was visiting, right?
He left today. Coach Beekman and I
really enjoyed the visit.

Nothing makes a former teacher feel more loved than to be remembered and respected, loved, and visited by a former student. Do you have a favorite teacher you could honor somehow today? Maybe that could be your Tanaga topic!

See ya later.
Love ya, JanBeek

P.S.
Bob lost a cap on one tooth.

It looks strange; that is the truth!
Don’t tell him he looks uncouth.
Ready for Halloween booth!

Smile


Smile when your heart is aching
Smile even though it’s breaking
Though there are clouds in the sky
You’ll get by – if you’ll just smile!

Do you know that song?
I’ll share it with you …
Along with some things
that made me smile today:

Everyone needs a blue-footed booby for a smile!
And I dare you to look at this cross-eyed owl trying to see that ladybug – and not smile!!
This snowy egret got its feathers ruffled over SOMEthing!
I used to have a pet goat when I was a kid. This one made me smile big time!
But before I tuck in, I told you I’d share that song with you.
It’s not the current version of “Smile” by Katy Perry.
It’s the version from the 1950s when I was a kid!
Here it is. Smile!
Nat King Cole had a voice described as “Liquid Velvet.”
This is one of his songs that I loved the most.
Its message is so important for us in this world today.

You’ll find that life is still worthwhile, if you’ll just smile!

Hug each other tight.
Like these rainbow lorikeets

Good night, my friends.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

Memories


Susan Hardwick & Phyllis Wasick

In March Susan got to visit
With Phyllis, our dear sister,
Before our dear friend’s life
Ended on earth. Oh how we missed her!

Tomorrow we’ll remember
Stories of Phyllis’ life
And share them with each other.
She was a loving wife.

Her husband died too young,
Over thirty years past.
Phyllis made his ring a heart
And wore the love that last.

The heart hung ’round her neck
All these many years –
She willed it to her Yana
Through memories and tears.

How many of us have
A memory to share
Of a loved one gone too soon
To their heavenly home up there?

If life is lived so fully
That when time comes, we are ready,
It’s easier to say good-bye.
Live your life with grace. Be steady!

Be loving and kind-hearted.
Be compassionate to those you meet.
Then, like my good friend, Phyllis,
Your friends’ memories all will be sweet.

Her children know the treasure
Of a mom whose love was always true.
She shared her life with God and friends.
I hope there is a friend like her for YOU!

Keep your memories of friends
Alive and smiling in your heart.
Make memories others will treasure.
Today’s a perfect day to start.

Rest in peace, dear Phyllis.
I’ll love you forever!

Phyllis was a grown up who did not “act more like children than children”
BUT
She was one of those people who needed people… just as I am.
We are/were “the luckiest people in the world!”
We each have (had) the person who made us whole…
… thank God for that “very special person.”


Share your memories of a loved one with me.
I’d love to read some of your thoughts on this subject
in the comments below.
Hugs,
JanBeek

A Day to Remember


This is a day to remember –
Remember the lives lost on 9-11-2001.
Remember the heroes who risked –
Risked their own lives to save others.

Today is a day to acknowledge
We as a nation are not impenetrable.
I used to think we were;
I used to think wars were someplace else.

Now I know wars rage right here.
Wars rage in our hearts and homes.
Wars rage on our streets.
Wars don’t need tanks and guns.

Wars are acts of hatred and violence
Against those we wish to oppress.
Wars rage where love is absent.
Love is the only way to douse wars.

So today, remember the feeling
Of fright and disbelief – – – the horror.
Remember how we came together
Joined hands as a nation to help.

And let’s do it again!
Let’s join hands to save our souls.
Let’s reach out to heal our wounds.
Let’s just love one another.

Never forget 9-11
Never let it happen again!

Love is Louder


God bless the Jefferson County Mental Health Local Advisory Council here in Montana!

Let’s all shout it out, “LOVE IS LOUDER!”

Let’s make it true!!

Th distance between me and my friend, Carol Orr, is from here to Eternity … but our love is louder than the distance! I was her Senior Companion – and she was my friend and mentor… always right for a laugh and a hug … always ready to share her 95 years of wisdom from her beautiful, sparkling soul.

LOVE is LOUDER than death! LOVE is LOUDER than disguises! LOVE sees through the darkness to the sparkle beneath and behind. LOVE brings out the best in us and in others. Let your LOVE SHINE!!

The motivational video below tells us, “One of life’s gifts is that its greatest moments are often disguised.” Our inability to see through the dark glasses finds us sometimes lost in a state of hopelessness. We live disguised as people behind a gloom of despair, seeing life as lost and hard.

My friend, Carol, was an upbeat person who enjoyed life to its fullest I posted a blog about her back on August 15, 2018 when she was in the hospital, looking toward the end of her time on earth. If you have time, check it out at

https://janbeek.blog/2019/07/28/95-years-of-life-lessons/

Carol spent her last months in our local nursing home, The Manor, hooked up to oxygen, and knowing her time was short, but LOVE was LOUDER than impending death. She never lost her smile nor her sense of humor. Ah, we should all be so blessed!

When all hope of living an eternity on earth, or of solving all the earth’s problems is lost, we need to take off the disguises, toss the dark glasses, and take each moment to see life’s infinite possibilities. What you seek is waiting. You are never too old to seek LOVE and you are never through positively influencing others – even (and maybe most especially) after leaving this earth.

Love is LOUDER

LOUDER than ANYTHING!


Every day you are :

  • smarter and
  • stronger and
  • better equipped
  • wiser and
  • sharper and
  • braver

What you seek is waiting for you.
Go for it!

Love is Louder

Shout it Out!!
I LOVE YOU!!!
See ya tomorrow.
Hugs,
JanBeek

For the Joy


For the joy of life

I give You thanks, O my God

Thanks for Montana

For the Joy of Life

In the beautiful outdoors

Thank You, O My Lord

We thank Thee for all
The blessings You give us, Lord.
Thank Thee for Jim Reeves!

What a voice!

What a beautiful land we live in…
Let’s take care of it, okay?
Protect the animals,
the trees and flowers, and rivers,
And let’s protect one another, too.

Bob & I are so happy that we were able to sing “Happy Birthday” to our daughter, DeAna this morning. Thank God for the internet! Today is the 53rd anniversary of her birth. She is celebrating it with her son, Chris, and her choir at a retreat in the Alps. Wish we could be there to celebrate with her!

Newborn DeDe with her brother, Ty..
Her tongue was always out… I thought maybe we needed to have the doctor shorten it!!!
But eventually she grew some teeth and the tongue stayed in!!
Yup, she grew lots of teeth! And the cutest smile, too!!
This was when she was in second grade.
About that time (2nd or 3rd grade)< her Grandma Beekman
made her a slip to match her own and curled her hair.
That’s becoming a big girl!!
I love this photo of DeDe as a high schooler.
Such a sweet and talented kid!
Yes, we are blessed!
And here she is today…
Celebrating her birthday in Switzerland
at a choir retreat with her son, Chris.

Oh, For Blessed JOY!!!
The joy of a child’s birthday…
Always our baby!

We remember so well the day of her wedding!
That’s my wedding dress from 25 years earlier…
Ah, sweet memories!

What are some of the JOYS that fill your heart today, my friends?
Is it the great outdoors, the animals, the beauty of God’s creation?
Is it family and the love of staying connected in spite of this pandemic?
Tell me!

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting!!
Hugs,
JanBeek

Revisit HodgePodge on Tuesday


Ya gotta read this post!
It’s full of gorgeous flowers from
derrickjknight

and you don’t want to miss seeing more!
It’s full of a variety of humor and thoughtfulness!

Do you know the word “HodgePodge”??
Is it real or is it one that my mom made up?
When I put it in Pexels to look for a picture,
nothing came up.
But my iPhone dictionary had it!
Here are some synonyms:

  • jumble
  • mishmash
  • collection
  • combination
  • medley
  • miscellany
  • potpourri
  • melange

Don’t you love the concept? It doesn’t say “junk” (which is often what I thought of when I used the word hodgepodge). No, not junk… just a mishmash of unrelated ideas or an assortment of things that can actually be related – like this meat on a grill.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com
A hodgepodge of meats

Need to Share

Today’s blog is a mishmash – a hodgepodge of various things, ideas, photos that caught my eye this week. I saved them because I either loved them or hated them, laughed or groaned at them, and I wanted to share them for your viewing, too.

Love One Another

My blog’s subtitle is “Loving One Another” – so I try to share ideas that represent ways we can reach out in love more fully and unconditionally to one another.

A friend (who was born in Canada but is now a USA citizen) sent me these pictures/memes/jokes/thoughts today. I decided if the election goes the wrong way next November here in the USA, Canada may be my next residency! It appears they have a handle on how to “Love One Another.” Even their graffiti is kinder than ours!!

And if they wear a hat with something written on it, I guess it is positive, too…

Going on with my hodgepodge, I received this meme from a friend today. It made me laugh. I think laughter is what keeps me going these days!

You can’t fix stupid. Don’t even try…
unless it’s YOU!!
Then get some help…
But God says we gotta LOVE everybody!
So, cover those unused socket holes!!
One of my blogging friends wrote a comment this week.
She said to me, “You’re a mess!”
Should I laugh or be insulted?
You have four choices for how to survive this virus:
champ, chump, clump, or chimp.
What will it be?

Oh, Other Options?

You say you have other survivor options? One way my blogging friend, Derrick Knight and his wife, Jackie, are surviving this pandemic is by being voracious gardeners. And Derrick is a phenomenal photographer. Let me add to my hodgepodge today by sharing a couple of my favorite photos he posted recently from his rainy vistas in Great Britain:

Derrick’s peach rose
Magnificent!!
Derrick’s Mamma Mia
Amazing!!
Derrick’s gladiolas
I love ’em!
Derrick’s California Poppy –
My favorite.

Pictures Bring Back Memories

In my past life, some of you know I was a teacher for 24 years and a principal for 9 years and worked in the district office as curriculum coordinator (wearing a hundred hats with all kinds of responsibility and no authority to back ’em up!)… and then I decided to do what I loved most – and go back into the classroom before I retired. I taught a first grade and took them on to second. Oh, what a joy that was! Many of those students are my FaceBook friends today… 21 years later!!

That poppy brought back those memories because the school where I was principal for 9 years was Caswell Elementary in the Ceres Unified School District in California. Our school song was:

“Poppies, Golden Poppies,
Gleaming in the sun.
Closing up at evening
when the day is done.
Pride of California,
Flower of our state,
Growing from the mountains
To the Golden Gate.

We’re the Caswell Cougars,
We are Number One.
Green and yellow banners
Waving in the sun.
Caswell is a place for
Learning and for fun.
We’re the Caswell Cougars,
We are Number One!!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com
The Cougar… our mascot

And the HodgePodge Continues…

Cord and Ruby

Yesterday, if you read my blog, you know we went for a farewell ice cream social to say “See ya later” to our two favorite little Sunday School friends, Cord and Ruby. We are praying for their happy resettling on their dad’s home ranch in Jordan, MT. It’s a six-hour drive from here. They’ll have horses and cattle and dogs and cats and lots of room to roam. Our love and prayers go with them. We gave them great big farewell hugs and told ’em how much we love and will miss them.

Vissoie, Switzerland

Great HodgePodge Finish

A great end to my hodgepodge for today is this wonderful photo that I JUST received via the magic of WhatsApp from my daughter, DeAna. She wrote,

“I took this photo
from the parking lot
near our restaurant
this morning
while thinking of you.”

Ah, our children certainly know how to melt a mothers heart, don’t they? Nothing could make me happier than to know that when my daughter sees a symbol of our faith, she thinks of me! What a gift, huh?

Maybe I am not so disturbed after all!!

A Puuurfect Ending

What HodgePodge of thoughts captured your imagination today?
I hope they were
a medley of
love and laughter,
memories and musings
that lightened your soul.

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Future Cuddles


(The poem below was written on my flight back to CA after some 4: AM cuddles with my newborn grandson in Switzerland two and a half decades ago)

Two fellow bloggers wrote yesterday about their grandchildren – and how this pandemic has taken away their ability to visit and hug them. It reminded me of this poem I wrote 26 years ago… and how much I miss my hugs and cuddles with my grandkids (and the three great-grandchildren). I decided to repost my poem and give you an updated picture of my three Swiss grandsons.

Here’s Nicky, the 26 year old for whom “The 4 o’clock Cuddle” was written. I seemed to know even when he was a newborn that someday he would have a “bearded cheek!” Hah!

The Four O’Clock Cuddle

Recalling our precious time together,
I wonder about
Future four o’clock cuddles.
Who will be there
In a decade or three?
Where will your bearded cheek
Nuzzle in four decades?

Will your big, round eyes
Remain innocent,
And your heart remain pure,
And with perfect trust,
Will you find the world
Always loves you
As I do?

Wrap your fingers
Around carefully chosen thumbs,
My dear grandson.
The world is yours,
But here
There will always be
A four o’clock cuddle.

Nicky is in the middle of this adorable picture of my three Swiss grandsons today.
Ah yes, a photo only a Grammy could call ADORABLE” … It’s a kiddie pool in the back of Nick’s new house that he’s sharing with two or three buddies in Switzerland. Here he is flanked by his brothers: Mike (28) and Chris (24)… Oh Lordy! I miss them!!

What kind of cuddles are you missing these days?
Tell me about ’em!!

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

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