Category Archives: Relationships

My Soulmate

Someone older and wiser than I once told me that in order to really get to know someone you should date them in all four seasons before getting married. While one year of dating doesn’t sample all possible joys and challenges life will offer, it does give you an glimpse.

My husband and I dated 50 weeks before we were married. Not quite a year. But we had been friends before that and had even traveled in groups together. Looking back, I remember things about him that attracted me to him even before I realized how much I cared for him.

He is a strong faith-driven man. He loves me and would lay down his life for us. It’s scary how much we think alike when it comes to family life, problem solving and some of the curve balls life throws.

When we married, he immediately became a step parent. For nine years he has handled this role with wisdom and love. Never rushing the relationship, he has become a mentor and dad to my son. He has sacrificed date nights, trips and things he wanted to do when parent-duty called. All because he agreed with me in the beginning that raising a confident child who would always know parents who love and support him is a priority.

Today is our ninth anniversary. I love our life together. Doing life on the busy days and the super-slow-stay in beds days, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. We haven’t quite gotten to the point of finishing each other’s sentences, but it will come. Becoming soulmates has taken time, love and trust.

The next decade will bring a new level to our relationship. At some point we will be empty nesting and planning for another season. I have no doubt that we will do so holding hands, praying for each other and laughing about our secret jokes.

This week’s post honors my husband, Jay. Happy anniversary, honey. I love you.

K.

The Tuesday Before

I went to the grocery Tuesday (yes, two days before Thanksgiving). My primary purpose was to pick up the fresh turkey gobblewe had ordered. Admittedly, there were a few other items, but nothing major. As I walked in there were people exiting with heaping cart loads of groceries. The store was abuzz with shoppers. There was a hustling energy much like gift shopping on Christmas Eve. It made me wonder if Thanksgiving was a surprise to these shoppers much like Christmas is to those who shop the day before. Or instead of shopping early, they chose to just wait and risk the possibility that the cranberry sauce in a can might be sold out or the pumpkin spice might be gone. Just wondering.

Truly friends we have much to be thankful for in this life. We are rich in friends, family and opportunity. There probably will not be any shortage in the grocery you find yourself in tonight at 10 p.m. (there is always that one key ingredient that was forgotten).

God bless,

KK

 

 

 

 

Climate Controlled

So the other evening my husband walked in from work red-faced and sweating. It took me a minute to realize what was going on.  While his work is sometimes physical and outside, and had been away from any of that activity for about 20 minutes, his car has no air conditioning and it was close to 90 degrees outside. Then like a splash of cold water it hit me, my world is very climate controlled.Climate-controlled

If I get too cold, I make an adjustment to the thermostat.  If I get too warm, another adjustment is made; never too cold, never too hot. When I leave to go somewhere, I get in the hot car and turn on the air conditioner.  It’s like living in a season-neutral world – not too hot, not too cold, don’t get rained on etc.

I wouldn’t call us soft, but what would your first thought be if there is a power outage on a very hot evening? One guess would be, call a hotel! Can we not stand to be a little uncomfortable? Do we take the opportunity to have a little adventure and experience what the uncontrolled environment feels like?

Those of us who work in offices need to be intentional about getting outside, letting our bodies be a part of creation; feel the sunshine, let a rain drop or two land on your nose, get a little sweaty, freeze a little.

Your thoughts,

KK

P.S. – he’s getting his air conditioner fixed this month.

 

Not so Holy Feeling

The remnants of sand and dirt felt crusty on Mary’s face from the long day’s journey and the ebb and flow of pain and sweat. The hard pain – the overwhelming stench – the crowds.  An hour from town there are tribes setting up camp everywhere.  How many more are crammed into this small town, Bethlehem?  The noise pounding in her head – the pains coming closer and closer. Oh, to just lie down.

Mary waited outside the inn for what seemed an eternity for Joseph to return.  His demeanor screamed as loud as Mary’s pain that he had failed.  There were no rooms.  The best he could provide was the privacy of the innkeeper’s barn.  A gentle touch on the shoulder from Joseph reminded Mary that he had done his best and was sorry it wasn’t better.  He wasn’t in charge of how the events of this night were unfolding.  The final steps to their accommodations were the worst on Mary’s swollen feet.

Joseph slid the barn door open only to gag from the disgusting odor.  Seems the barn was as full as the streets with visitors.  Asking one final thing of Mary, to wait in the fresher air outside while he found some straw and made bedding for her.  She submitted to her betrothed.  He didn’t sign up for this, but he certainly stepped up.

Together they slowly and gingerly walked in out of the cool night.  As he helped Mary lie down, she let out a scream from the pain.  Finally, free to let out the truth and anguish she felt.  The animals rustled and made noises like an out of tune orchestra.  Upon noticing their unexpected human guest, as if they knew who they were hosting, they laid down and became still.  As she settled in and became accustomed to the smells, sights and sounds.  She prayed.  God, we wanted better for your son.

It was a long and unfamiliar night for both Mary and Joseph; Mary too young to know much about birthing a child and Joseph too innocent.  Men didn’t get involved when a baby was coming.  But tonight was not about tradition or decorum – it was about changing the world – it was about hope and eternity colliding with all that humans thought was “normal”.  A new covenant squeezed into this night.

His birth wasn’t pretty.  Jesus joined humanity as a wiggly, slippery baby.  Mary was scared but led by what came instinctive and natural.  Joseph was awkwardly doing his best to provide blankets and a towel to wash the boy who would return the favor someday.

This night didn’t feel very holy, but it was real.  No airs or regal greeting parties for the King of Kings.  His mother felt the pains, his earthly father the helplessness, him the trauma every human baby in history feels during birth.  It was the heavenly Father who felt joy knowing He sent an invitation through Jesus. He knew he would get his son back and when He did, Jesus would bring all of the rest of His children.

The night was finally silent.  Mary could breathe without pain.  Joseph settled in next to his family. Mary-Film-The-Holy-Family For the first time since Genesis the world would be still and rest in the hope of Him who came to love, serve and save.

May every night of your coming days bring stillness, hope and peace in Jesus Christ.

Happy Birthday, Jesus.

KK

Are you up for the test?

When I have meetings at the Kentucky Shakespeare office in downtown Louisville (Kentucky), I like to park in the open-air pay lot across the street. First of all, I don’t like parking garages and secondly, the man who runs it is friendly. It’s obvious he’s an ordinary guy, doing his best to make a living.

Recently, I pulled in and there was another gentleman in the booth. This time my meeting was the Fund for the Arts board meeting. After the meeting, I was pulling up to the booth to pay I pulled out my wallet to find that I had a large bill. Please note that I don’t make a habit of carrying large denominations. So I pulled forward and the gentleman checks my ticket and tells me it will be $4.50. And so begins my inquiry as to whether he could “break” a large bill.parking booth

He immediately said “no”. All I had on me in change was two dollars. So I implored him to let me just run to the bank and I would come back with money to pay him. He hesitated. I promised. I gave him the two dollars I had and emphatically promised to be back in 10 minutes. He relented. I went to the bank and was back in the time frame.

When I pulled in the same gentleman opened the metal booth door and smiled. “You are an honest person,” he said. I handed him a $10 dollar bill. “I didn’t believe you would come back.” With that he handed me change as if I’d given him $20. After quickly checking my bank envelope, I handed the money back explaining his error. He chuckled, “I was just testin’ ya.”

Enough tests for one day. I drove away thinking that in reality, he was probably a little challenged by the money math. I was also glad to be the honest example for the day.

Have you found yourself in situations like this? Has your character been tested?

All the best,
KK

15 more — I’m doing my part

So our goal was 100 posts and 100 followers by December 31st.  Many of you have done your part, there are 64 followers. I’m doing my part, this is post number 85.  There are 15 more coming.  I promise.  A few have been drafted others are still rolling around in this red-headed head.  You know, natural-born red-heads are dwindling in number…but I digress.  Here’s how you can help:

First, be sure you are following.  Just click the “Follow” button to the right right arrowof this post.  Second, you could share this or any of my posts on your Facebook page inviting your friends to follow as well.  Thirdly, you could copy and paste www.kkscandor.com in an email message telling friends and family that you are offering them a subscription to my blog for the holidays.  Yes, I know it’s free, but the value and thought are what gift giving is all about, isn’t it?

Finally, enjoy the impact you could have on helping me accomplish my goal and in return you are giving friends and family a gateway to encouragement.

Thank you.

All the best,

KK

6 Things I’m grateful for – One at a Time – Number 1

sqeasy vegetable soupThanksgiving Soup

I’ve been thinking a lot about what todays grateful item would be.  Reading over the previous five I am hopeful that much more of what I’m thankful for has been woven throughout.  I didn’t want today’s post to be the typical things like faith, family and friends.  You did read those things into the other posts, right?  If not, here they are; I am very thankful for my faith the holds me steady, my family that always stands firm with me, and my friends who encourage me and add so much to my life.

Today’s post is what I like to call Thanksgiving soup – a bunch of little things that are full of goodness and laughter that come together to give great flavor to my world.  It’s the simplest of things and people I encounter each day.  Times and encounters that can’t be plan, Fate brings them together.  We need to be paying attention to catch them.

This morning I got up to watch the Macy’s Day Parade – a Thanksgiving tradition of mine for many years.  Jay got up with me and we enjoyed a cup of hot tea, the Rockettes, and marching bands from all over the country.  About half way through, Cole got up and joined us.  There the three of us snuggled on the couch, laughing and playfully enjoying some fun.   It is these moments I have grown old enough and wise enough to cherish in my heart.  You can’t trade them.

I won’t bore you with the hundreds of other examples of the simple pleasures in life for which I am thankful.  But I will encourage you to slow down enough to enjoy a few for yourself.

Happy Thanksgiving.

All the best,

KK

Say Please and Thank You, and Rule the World

One of the first things we learn is to say, “please” when requesting something and “thank you” when receiving. 20130408-225059.jpgThese two phrases work wonders in making progress on a task, duty or need. While these manners are taught young in life somewhere along the way they seem to wane and by adulthood for some they are entirely absent. Saying please and thank you shows respect for the other person and puts a value on what they are offering or can do.

Common courtesies and respectfulness to other humans seems to be losing out to everyone’s efforts to just ‘get a task done’ and selfish thinking. Instead of going through the day working our jobs and along the way building relationships, people are isolating themselves with a laptop and a cell phone and are all about just getting the job done. Its a very self-centered existence. This may please employers in a cut-throat environment, but it’s no way to build a life. Maybe the workplace has become so competitive there is little mutual respect because tomorrow the next guy may have your job. Seriously though, is that anyway to live AND build a career?

Back to the original thought, have you ever walked up to a counter to place an order only to be greeted by a server who is obviously harried and busy with customers. As the customer, you are thinking, that server’s job is to serve. But what about your responsibility in the exchange. Your role is to place your order. Given your observation of the server, what can you do to help the order-taking and the order-receiving process be 20130408-224945.jpgpositive for both? Just be kind and considerate — please and thank you. Try it sometime and see what happens.

As long as we are talking about basic manners, let’s venture into the world of technology. It is a wonderful thing and does provide opportunities to communicate and connect with others, but it is absolutely no substitute for person to person interaction — a phone call, visit or even hand-written note. Texting and email have their place, except when sensitive information is being shared. That is just rude. And if there is a problem being worked out, pick up the phone and call the person, don’t just pass emails back and forth. There is a great deal to be lost in the tone (real or perceived) in an email. If settling the problem and making things right with another person means that much, then it’s worth the time and effort to pick up the phone.

Thank you for reading my thoughts on the matter. Please take a minute to comment or even click follow on the right side.

All the best,

KK

It’s Just a Drop in the Bucket

How many times is the question asked, “What does it matter”? It’s just a drop in the bucket; meaningless.  Every day we make drop in bucketthousands of declarations, I do, I don’t, I will, I can’t, yes, no, maybe.  Each of these little words leads to an action or no action, but all of them move us forward.  Put these declarations in a string and the results are decisions that pave the journey of life.  Meaningless – no decision is completely meaningless and all lead to experiences that make and mold who we are.   What impact will my decisions really have, I am one individual?

Recently, I was watching the Discovery Channel with my son.  The show talked about water molecules.  Water drops tend to reach and adhere to each other.  So two drops of water close enough on a plate or counter will join and become a bigger drop.  If you fill a cup to the rim the water molecules are clinging to each other and will sit on the very edge of the cup until some other action forces them over the edge.

This bucket was set under a dripping facet – one drip at a time and a few hours later the bucket was full.  One drip barely made tdrip in buckethe bucket wet, but in a short time there is enough to wash.

Choices and decisions may seem like nothing, but they all lead to something.  Where are you going?

All the best,

KK

Let’s Talk About Pet Peeves

After I outlined this post I put it aside, you know to let it ruminate.  When I came back to the subject I noticed that half of the pet peeves listed were character traits in other people.  One definition of “pet peeve” is a complaining, teasing, or annoying behavior; which begs the question as to whether it’s worth carrying these things as pet peeves if I can’t change these behaviors in other people.checklist

That’s right, there comes a point in our lives when we are old enough and wise enough to realize, we can’t change other people only they can make a personal decision to change.  And what bugs us about other people may not bother them at all.  So really these pet peeves may or may not be seen as right in the eyes of another individual and in such a case, I look judgmental and not like a person who just wants to make a difference in this world.

That leaves me with two pet peeves I will share with you and then open the floor for you to share.  First of all, receipts.  I can go in a store and purchase a pack of gum with cash and end up with a receipt the length of my arm.  Wasn’t all of this electronic scanning and debit cards created to reduce the amount of paper it takes to make a transaction?  Do retailers really care about my opinions on the survey that the bottom of the mile-long receipt invites me to participate?  Because I am one of those who balance my checkbook, I do keep receipts for a period of time, but the bulging envelop turns out to be half the transactions and half a bunch of information I never read, or coupons I never use.  And as long as we are talking about making retail transactions, is it necessary (Sears) to have my phone number to make a purchase?  Would they know if I gave them a fake or old disconnected number?  I may try that next time.

The other peeve I will share is wasting time.  In the course of my day, I’m pretty much in perpetual motion or work type activity from the time I get up until late evening when my son is in bed and I feel like I can take a little time for me.  So, to have some non-important something slow me down or stop me is annoying.  Do I ever stop to watch television or check out Facebook?  Yes, but I don’t spend hours doing either one and most of the time if I’m watching television it is part of my personal downtime or time with my family.  As a parent of a middle school student, there is a lot of time spent taking him to practices or having him at school activities.  This is not a waste of time, but I find myself with odd periods of time waiting for him that I try to make productive by taking work along or a book to read.  Rarely do I ever “kill” time.  What I do watch out for is that I’m teaching my son the balance between living a productive non-wasteful life and living in such a manner so as to not rush or over-plan every moment of the day.  There are extraordinary things that happen to us and around us in the spontaneity of life that need to be experienced; slowing down to listen to a spouse share their day or a child ask a question or tell of an adventure, watch the sunset or notice a child playing; taking a call from a friend in need or who has good news to share.   You know the important things in life that will outlast any daily schedule, remind us of our priorities and are like pushing the reset button on our patterns of thinking.

“People over progress” is a mantra that I took on several years ago when I did find myself so over planned and dedicated to my daily lists to be available for those who mean the most to me.  Most of the time, people are not a waste of time.

Well this post didn’t go exactly the way I expected, but that’s ok, it accomplished the goal.  Are you re-thinking your pet peeves?  What are they?

All the best,

KK