A little of this A little of that A mountain of snow A dog and a cat
A look through a window At September snow A beautiful fence line Where horizons glow
A plate of raclette To make my mouth water A beautiful friend sharing dinner With my lovely Swiss daughter
A look into hearts From an angel’s swing Helps us see one another With the love we bring
If we can see others Through an angel child’s eyes, How much kinder this world Would be… and how wise!
What binds us together Like birds of a feather Is not what you see On a plate or the weather
What binds us together Is the love that we share So, let’s share it generously… Spread your love everywhere!
What is it that binds you to your loved ones? Of course, it’s the love… but it’s also shared interests. How do you cultivate and grow those interests? Think about it… and buy an extra bag of that fertilizer!
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:
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.
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!
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:
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!!
And the HodgePodge Continues…
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.
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!!
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.
(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!!
This is the “chalet” where our daughter, DeAna, is spending this weekend with her friend, Kade. While they are enjoying the hot tub, lovely meals, and the fantastic scenery, Andre’ and his brother, Roger, are out on a motorcycle adventure.
Don’t forget to Dream Big! My friend, Terry, and I have been studying Bob Goff’s on-line Bible Study titled, “Dream Big” – and this is one of my dreams: To return to Switzerland To visit DeAna and her family and to rent a “chalet” like this one and have all kinds of friends come and stay with us.
Are you on? Dream Big!
Keep Unfulfilled Dreams Alive
Don’t forget to keep Unfulfilled Dreams alive and well in your heart. It makes tomorrow ENCHANTING!
This 12 minute video shows mainly city areas, but it gives you a great idea of the diversity of Switzerland’s landscape and architecture. (I hope you are not interrupted by Montana political ads like I was)
My Favorite Swiss Places
My favorite places to visit in Switzerland are not the cities… although Geneva and Lucerne, are indeed lovely spots. My daughter lives in Sierre, a much smaller city, and I love to go there in the Rhone River Valley, to that “sun city” because people are more important than places to me.
The “Swiss Weekend” pictures are from a little village outside Geneva. I want to go there! Also. De & Andre’ have purchased a restaurant in a village called Vissoie. It is up the mountain from Sierre. I want to go there!
What Are Your Favorite Spots?
After visiting the 10 top spots via that You.Tube video (if you had 12 minutes to view it), do you have a favorite spot you might want to visit in Switzerland?
Have you ever been to Switzerland before? If so, I know why you want to go back. If not, I know why you want to put it on your “Bucket List.”
Dr. Jimmy Walters has been posting a 30 day series on healing. Today his topic was “Listening.” Check it out by clicking n “Day 26” below:
Dr. Jimmy said in his article, “… listening can inform us, guide us, as we grow and as we learn.”
My daughter DeAna, and her husband, Andre’ (pictured above and below here) are celebrating their 33rd anniversary today. It has been an interesting journey for them. They married when she was not quite 20 and he was 24. Young and naive, coming from a world apart – she a California girl and he a fun-loving guy who’d been working as a chef in Switzerland.
DeAna wore my dress and Andre’ wore Bob’s red bow tie and cummerbund as they were married in the same University of the Pacific chapel where Bob & I were wed 25 years earlier.
They remained in California four more years while De finished college, but eventually, they moved back to Andre’s hometown in Sierre, Switzerland. He missed his mountains, his family, his culture. I don’t blame him!!! De was pregnant with our first grandchild when they left. Talk about a difficult good-bye! But hey… Switzerland…. what a beautiful place to HAVE TO visit, huh?
Life was beautiful – but, oh so different – there.
Listening to Andre’s mom, Denise, was an important part of their marital success. As the years went by, DeAna and Andre’ grew in their ability to share their minds, let their dreams be known, and listen to one another.
Bob & I have been married 58 years, and we, too, are busy still learning to be better listeners. It’s a life-long process. But the effort is worth it. We, too, are happier now than ever.
Psalm 37:10-11 (MSG)
“The deeper your love, the higher it goes; every cloud is a flag to your faithfulness. Soar high in the skies, O God! Cover the whole earth with Your glory!”
Today the skies revealed a slight rainbow arching the skies … look carefully:
As I stood on the porch after the rain, listening to the thunder in the hills, the robins chirped from their nest nearby and the doves flew back onto the roof to coo at one another. Listen! The earth is alive with God’s symphonies.
The rain returned – just light sprinkles, but the birds continued their songs.
Bob came out on the porch and said, “What’s for lunch?” I responded with a shrug, “I don’t have anything planned.” “How about a hamburger and huckleberry milkshake?” he asked. Believe me, I listened, I heard, and … We were in the car in a jiffy.
The sign over Bob’s shoulder says, “Without ICE CREAM, Life is Darkness and Chaos.”
Without good listening, Without open sharing of dreams, You’ll miss out on lots of hamburgers and milkshakes!
Now, doesn’t that look like “God’s Vision for Your Life”??
Listen for your Health! Listen for your Happiness. Don’t miss out!
Back in the mid-1800’s, the land for this church was deeded to the Methodist- Episcopal Church of Madison County. Sometime in the 1860s, around the time of the Montana Gold Rush, this wonderful church was built on the property.
History of the Church
“Brother Van” served as a traveling preacher/minister and had people from miles around come to worship here in the 1850s through to early 1900s.
Sometime in the mid-1900s, the Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church traded properties from the Ruby Valley to the Madison Valley. As the story goes, there were not enough folks in each valley to support both a Presbyterian and a Methodist church in such close proximity to one another. (These denominations are so close in theology and worship practices!) So, this church building joined the Presbyterian family while the Ruby Valley Presbyterian Church became a Methodist worship center.
Use of the Church Today
The church has no running water, but it does have electricity. Once a year, in early September, the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis holds services out there in the McAllister Church. Porta-potties are brought in. And it is a challenge to provide coffee and goodies for fellowship in this waterless place! But, the service always is a memorable experience.
Future of the Church
Last week we had wind gusts up to 62 mph here in the Madison Valley. A few of the roof pieces blew off in the storm. So, we were out here yesterday with a roofer, getting a bid on what it would cost to repair or replace it.
Seeing the trucks on the property, several neighbors, new to the area, came to check it out. It’s a curiosity for those who have never been inside, and they were glad to be invited in.
This dear gentleman, new to Montana, even offered to help with the roofing project. We hope he retires soon from his home in California and moves with his family to our “Paradise on Earth” full time so we can become better acquainted – and take him up on the offer to help.
Meeting New people
Do you enjoy meeting new people as much as I do? Donnie is a firefighter in California. He and his wife have built a home in those mountains you see behind him there. Welcome to Montana, Donnie! Nice meeting you!
Birthday and Anniversary
And by the way, Happy Birthday today to my dear son-in-law in Switzerland, Andre’ Solioz… and De & Andre’s anniversary is tomorrow. Wish we could be there to help them celebrate!
Have a wonderful Saturday.
Hope you enjoyed those photos of our wonderful old church. Do you have old buildings in your area that are worthy of preservation? I bet some of you have places that make an 1800s church look like it’s NEW!!
A couple of months ago we took a little stroll through my home state, Montana, via the lenses of several very talented photographers.
Then the next day I invited you to Switzerland where our daughter, DeAna, lives with her husband and family. It’s our go-to place when we have saved up enough to travel… and are free to do so. Three of our grandchildren are there. Of course, it’s a wonderful place to “have to” go!!
Today in my “Antelope and Attitude” post I told you I dream of traveling in 2021 back to Switzerland. For my new followers, I dug out this old post and decided to update it and let you see why I love Switzerland so much.
Thanks for visiting with me for a while. Hopefully someday we will go back… and I hope you can visit Switzerland for real yourself someday, too.
Our daughter, DeAna, sent us this video this morning of her duet with Sylviane, her “Swisster.” It warms my heart to see and hear them singing together. De is the one in red.
“Syli” (as we nicknamed her) lived in our home/became our daughter and De’s “Swisster” in Modesto, CA when De was a senior in high school. DeAna then lived with Syli’s family in Sierre, Switzerland the next year. When she came home, she brought Syli’s first cousin, Andre’, home with her! They were married a year later.
Seeing and hearing these two sing together is such a joy! (Sit back a couple minutes and enjoy)
Our grandson, Chris, was named after Syli’s brother, Christian. Christian was our AFS exchange student in 1980-81. That’s how this whole Swiss connection got started.
If you have followed my blog for awhile, you met our grandson, Chrissy, when he came to Montana last year and attended the Job Corps program.
And you saw Chris with his girlfriend, Natalia from Colombia, in this related post: