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Dogs in Heaven?


Today a good friend of ours
Is having to say good-bye
To her furry companion
Such days make me cry

Photo by Julia Volk on Pexels.com

The doggy’s name is Hannah.
She’s been a faithful friend.
Companionship and a love –
Giving comfort to the end

Photo by Szabu00f3 Viktor on Pexels.com

I wrote this poem for my friend, Fran, as a comfort as she sees Hannah off on her final journey. Bon Voyage, dear pup. You’ve been a treasured friend for over 15 years. You’ve earned you eternal reward!

I Believe

I don’t have to understand
In order to believe.
I just have to trust –
And know it’s okay to grieve.

When tragedy strikes –
Like the death of a friend –
I don’t have to comprehend
Why my friend’s life must end.

I can just believe
There’s a heaven and a hell.
My friend will ascend
To eternity to dwell.

In heaven are the ones
Who lived by the Cross.
They accepted God’s grace,
So their death is not loss.

There are people and pets
In that paradise up high.
I don’t have to understand –
Just anticipate the sky!

Photo by Ruvim on Pexels.com

Rest in Peace, Sweet Hannah.
Your cross to bear has ended –
Your life you shared and blended.
Your soul to heaven ascended.

See ya round the bend!

Have a blessed Saturday.
Say a prayer for my friend, Fran.

These pictures below are from a book by Cynthia Rylant titled, “Dog Heaven.” It was a gift to us from the Colorado State Veterinary Hospital staff after our beloved Boston, Angela, died following a two year bout with cancer.

And thank God there are fields for romping in Heaven.

See ya round the bend.
(Do you have a pet waiting for you in Heaven?)

God bless ya!
JanBeek

The Reason


The Reason for the season
Is not always clear.
Today as I was decorating,
This message caught my ear.

Time to decorate
For the coming of Jesus.
It’s Holiday Time.

Time to decorate
The foyer and entryway;
Put up Christmas wreaths.

This fresh wreath is in the cool foyer
This one’s in the entry
(on the other side of the foyer).
See the stairs to my sanctuary there?

Time to decorate
Dining room and kitchen, too.
Poinsettia in place.


Time to decorate
Living room and outside, too.
Hang lighted snowflake.

Time to decorate
For the coming of Christmas
Where is the manger?

Is Jesus in your decor?

I can decorate.
The reason for the season
Must be apparent.

Bring out the hand-made stockings
and all the memories
those stockings bring to mind!
When I hang this little guy
on the tree, I remember
Bob’s years as a beekeeper.
Bob’s Aunt Nora made this one.
She lives on in our hearts.
Before we had TazE,
we had two other Boston Terriers:
Angelo and Angela.
Their memories remain alive with these ornaments.
Remembering our Bostons
is part of the Christmas joy.

Look carefully at that picture.
Santa is back there…
But in front of him is a clay manger scene.
It looks pretty primitive.
That’s because it is!
Out son made this as an art project
in Sunday School when he was about 6 years old.
He’s now 55.

Do you keep such works of art
and take them out each year
to treasure the memories?

Can you guess
what this is?

It is a case from a friend who visited from Africa –
and in the case are these darling manger scene figures
made from grasses:

They remind me of our dear
friend from Zimbabwe, Lamiel,
who lives in my heart.
Grandma Beekman’s Christmas egg

When the Christmas decoration boxes come up from the basement, with them come so many memories.
This is a real egg with a window cut out by my dear mother-in-law, Laura Belle Beekman.
She painted it red, decorated it, and added a musical angel to the center of it.
It was my Christmas gift from her in the early 60’s, shortly after Bob & I were married.
With her Faberge’ style eggs, she comes alive again – and lives in our Christmas decor.

See the date on this?
1971!!

When I hang this ornament on our tree each year,
my Hillsborough, California kindergarten class comes alive.
This one with our kitty,
was the sample I made as my students were creating theirs –
with a picture of themselves on their ornaments.
One of those students, Heidi, still has hers.
She posted it on FaceBook last week.
What a treasure!
Heidi is now 55!!

The boxes of ornaments are filled with memories.
Not all can go on the tree…
But it’s such fun to decorate.

How are you doing with your holiday decorations?
Have you put up a tree?
Or do you have a Menorah?
Or an Advent Wreath?
Tell me about your decorating fun this time of the year.

And meantime, click on the link below
and enjoy two of my favorite singers
singing one of my favorite Christmas songs.

Merry Christmas is coming…
Enjoy your decorating!
And don’t forget the
REASON for the SEASON!!
See ya tomorrow.
Love, JanBeek

Do You Journal?


Do you journal?
Do you write most days –
Only here on WordPress?
Do you write in other ways?

Journaling on WordPress
Is a great opportunity,
But I might not say
All that occurs to me.

My journal from Marcie & Monica

I have a wonderful journal –
A gift from two good friends.
They gave it to me last year
Knowing my journaling never ends.

Today I wrote an entry
About how November’s end –
And how Christmas is coming
Right around the next bend.

But, I don’t want to squander
All the lesson November brought,
So I recalled all the Take-Aways
Each November devotion brought:

Which of those take-aways
Speaks to your heart today?
Which will you carry with you
As you travel on your way?

Each day I read the message
And in a word or five,
I take the thought I need
This day to live and thrive.

I invite you to also journal
If it isn’t already a habit.
Find a booklet that fits your taste
Then think your thoughts and grab it!

Grab that booklet daily
To augment the things you say
On WordPress to your friends here.
Your grandkids will love it some day!

This is another of my journals

Do you journal?
Do you write most days –
Only here on WordPress?
Do you write in other ways?

Journaling can be very therapeutic.
It can get things off your chest.
Then you can refer back to it.
It can be comforting at best!

If you don’t journal in a booklet,
Try it, my friends, start today.
You may discover, as I did,
It’s a place to finish your “say!”

Reading your journal later
Is like looking in a rear view mirror.
It helps you see what was
And makes today seem clearer.

Try it! You’ll like it!!

Bye for now.
See ya tomorrow.
Hugs from JanBeek

This song by Roy Clark tells us, “I never stopped to think what life was all about…”
Well, I find that journaling helps me to that as I can recall “Yesterday When I Was Young” by looking back…

Good Friends Are Slippers


Good Friends are Slippers,
Comfortable and Warm,
Sturdy and Reliable,
Trudging through Life’s Storm.

Always There When Needed,
Showing No Pretenses,
Listening and Loving,
Scaling Broken Fences.

Photo by Arvid Knutsen on Pexels.com

Providing a Foundation
Of Sturdiness Untold.
Good Friends are Slippers –
More Comfortable when Old.

If You are Blessed with Friends
As Comfortable and Warm as Slippers,
Hang on Tight; Don’t Cut ’em Out.
Put Away the Clippers!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

You Can’t Measure Their Worth
With a Ruler or Some Tape.
Good Friends are Slippers.
Don’t Let Their Warmth Escape!

My blanket from my friend, Terry…
Cozy hugs and warmth –
here whenever I need them!
New since we moved to Montana.
She’s here whenever I need her!
What a blessing!
Thank you, Terry!

Keep the old and make some new;
One is silver, the other is gold.
True Friends are Slippers –
Treasures with comfort untold.

Dear Marcie,
An “Old” Friend…
Best Buddies since the ’50s.
Comfortable and Warm!

May your life be warmed
With the comfort of many-a true friend.
God bless and keep them safe.
May those friendships never end.

I Am
Grateful and Loving

Who’s that Friend
Who is a Slipper
For You?


Thanks for visiting
JanBeek
Come back tomorrow…
And have a warm and comfortable week.

Here’s one of my favorite songs and singers
from the 1950’s when I was in high school.
The words fit today’s message so well!
Enjoy!!

Dinah Shore

When I first told my family…


We were having one of my favorite meals, spaghetti with meat sauce, when I first told my family that I had broken up with my fiance’. My dad nearly choked on his mouthful. My mom shoved her plate of spaghetti half-way across the table!

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

To this day, I can’t eat spaghetti with meat sauce without remembering that day.

My fiance’ and I had been engaged for about a year. He was in the army, stationed in Germany. I was a senior in college, missing the social life, trying to remain true to my engagement. I wanted to attend the school’s dances and other social functions. It was hard!

Rather than being untrue to my boyfriend who was so far away (we had not seen each other in six months), I broke off with him. Obviously, my parents were devastated. Especially when they learned the guy I wanted to date was a divorce’.

“Why buy a used car when you can have a new one?” my dad finally spoke. Then he got up and walked out of the room. (Yes, Dad was a man of few words, but a list of prejudices a mile long!)

Mom followed him, without speaking a word. That was so unlike her.

Proverbs 6: 20-23

20 My son, obey your father’s commands,and don’t neglect your mother’s instruction. 21 Keep their words always in your heart. Tie them around your neck. 22 When you walk, their counsel will lead you. When you sleep, they will protect you. When you wake up, they will advise you. 23 For their command is a lamp and their instruction a light; their corrective discipline is the way to life.

The man I broke up with was from a family very much like my own. He grew up in the same area I did. We shared common roots. My parent and his got along wonderfully. The man I wanted to date was nine years older than I. I won’t get into why he was so attractive to me, but suffice to say, my parents’ dismay touched me deeply.

They let me have my “fling.” They did not bad-mouth my new friend. But when my ex-boyfriend came home on leave, they invited him over. When I returned home from college that weekend, he was there. I realized how much I loved him. That love has carried us through 58 years of marriage. Not always perfect, not always blissful, but always respectful, and always knitted together in prayer, faith in God, and common purpose. The love has grown as years passed – and I am grateful every day for my parents’ wisdom.

Put a plate of spaghetti and meatballs in front of me. I can taste the kindness of my parents in every meatball. I can hear my mom’s silence and feel her prayers in every slurp of pasta. I feel my dad’s concern about age differences and divorce. I keep their love in my heart with every Italian meal! God bless ’em!!

Today at d’Verse we are trying a new form of poetry. Synesthesia is a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sense leads to automatic, involuntary experiences of a second one.   There are over 80 types of synesthesia described by science.   Nearly every combination of sensory experiences or cognitive concepts is possible.

Seeing music as colors is one form of synesthesia. Perceiving letters as personalities is another one, or seeing numbers in color. Even hearing colors or touching smells.

How about tasting memories?
Do you have any of those?

Photo by Ali Nafezarefi on Pexels.com

This post is a combination prompt: 1) My Madison Valley Writers’ Group Prompt was the title of the blog, and 2) the d’Verse prompt informed the style and content. It’s not poetry… but it may qualify as Synesthesia. What do you think?

My Italian Daddy and me

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting
JanBeek

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

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