Tell Me A Story

ww2Evidently the older I get the more I appreciate the stories my elders tell of life long ago.  I am blessed to have loved ones with great longevity; so there are tales from World War II and even before that are fascinating to hear.  When my mother re-married (long after I was an adult), her new husband’s mother was still alive and close to 90 years old.  Visiting her in the nursing home often meant stories of her taking the train to Chicago to see a picture show.  Her father was in the early film business.  She told the stories in such a way that I could, feel the steam from the train breaks and picture a young girl all dressed up and riding.

War isn’t a pretty thing, but there is something fascinating about the soldiers and the attitude of the 30’s and 40’s.  I don’t know if life was simpler, every generation has their challenges.  But living was different.  My father doesn’t tell many stories of his time in the service (WW2), but he did tell me that when they came home, people respected the soldiers and their service to the country.  Are we too busy to appreciate this anymore?

My father grew up in the 1920’s in a town next to the Ohio river.  He shares stories of messing around the river all afternoon with his brother; taking the trolley downtown to see a baseball game for a nickel!  How fun!

My favorite shows to watch are set in other times.  Ok, so I know these are cleaned up “Hollywood style”, but there is an element of truth to them.

Tell me your story of days gone by, did you grow up during the depression or  during economic boom in the 50’s or the free thinking days of the 60’s or the 80’s when all women wanted was a corner office?

All the best,

KK

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Are you living IN the moment or FOR the moment?

Before we get too far from a generation who had no television, cell phone or internet, I’d like to ask for their help.  Many can agree that the pace of life continues to push toward a faster and faster pace.  Why?  What are we rushing for?  Did your parents and grandparents live this way?   Half of those hurrying about their lives have no idea where they are going.  They have no goals or dreams, they are just getting up every morning, turning on whatever stimulus they are addicted(coffee, internet news, CNN…) to and go –before we all implode, lets take a minute and a deep breath (in through your nose, out through your mouth).  If you feel lightheaded it’s because you lungs are in shock from all of the air going in.  Try it one more time.  How does that feel?

Maybe I’m just growing up a little and realizing that there are so many things to notice and people who cross our path that we ignore because we live in a hurried stressful time.  It’s sad to see so many people living in fear that they will fail to get something done.  If our priorities are set, and our soul has peace everything else will fall into place.

Every day before my feet hit the floor I whisper a little prayer that invites God into my thoughts and activities for the day.  “Let all that I say and do be God-honoring.”  Most days that prayer sets the tone for the day and all the things on my list fall within that prayer; being a God-honoring wife, mother and employee.

 In our teenage years and even early 20’s, we believed that we were invincible.  So we made dumb decisions and did reckless things.  We were living for the moment and all the adventure of being a young adult out on our own for the first time.

Today, be encouraged to live IN the moment not FOR the moment.  As we consider the pace of life we choose for ourselves (not that is thrust on us by others or society), consider this moment or any given moment you find yourself in today and take in all that it has to offer.  Some moments will be VERY mundane – buying gas, or grocery shopping.  But other moments will be extraordinary.  Take in a quiet moment in yard, watching the leaves dance on the trees; or a moment watching your child practice batting over and over and over, until he hits the ball.  The look on his face is something to capture in your mind’s eye.  What about a quiet moment with a friend or your spouse?  Jay and I have what we call “stop time moments” where we might just be talking or staring into each other’s eyes – both hoping that time could stop for just a few minutes.

Taking in this moment, now, what are you thinking of?  Do you find yourself missing someone?  If you have read this far in this post, you probably are not thinking about a TV show you are missing.  In fact, if your TV is on, I hope it feels very loud and intrusive.

There is nothing wrong with TV or watching the news or keeping up with Facebook.  What are they keeping you from?  Are they part of the outside world that keeps pushing you to move faster?

Let me encourage you over these last 6 or 7 weeks of 2010 to slow down and enjoy the moments.  Take in the spirit of Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Laugh at the silly uptight family member that is the “Martha” in your world.  You know the type, perfect everything and rushing around to have dinner ready by 5:00 that she barely greets you when you walk in.

Let me know how it goes.

All the best,

KK

…“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed.”…  Luke 10:38 – 42

Are you wearing that?

Apparently, people have forgotten how to dress appropriately.  We were raised that you dress for the occasion.  For example, going out to dinner a play, the orchestra or fine dining restaurant meant a dress or skirt, blouse or sweater and dress shoes.  Going to church meant dressing up, because in the words of my mother, “if you can’t dress up for God, who can you?”  Holidays at a relative’s house meant wearing our dress cloths as well.  After college when I began interviewing for jobs there were very specific rules for what to wear to a first interview, second interview.  As well, there were rules about what NOT to wear.

Dressing appropriately does not mean you have to be uncomfortable, it simply means you need to dress for the occasion in an appropriate way according to what you will be doing and the people with whom you will be.  Failure to teach our children this is as atrocious as not teaching them table manners or to respect authority.

What happened to taking pride in how we look?  What happened to taking time to plan our outfit for a special occasion or outing?

Recently, on a Saturday evening we went to the ballet at the Kentucky Center for the Arts.  My husband wore slacks, collared shirt and jacket.  I wore black dress slacks and a dressy sweater.   There was a group of girls sitting two rows in front of us all dressed in skirts and sweaters.  It was obvious that their ballet instructor had brought them and had “coached” them on behavior and what they should expect.  In contrast, I saw a woman with her two daughters wearing dingy sneakers, Capri pants and t-shirts.

Before you call me a snob for pointing out that the mother and daughters were not dressed appropriately, read on.  Do you think they were comfortable among others who were dressed up?  It does not take a lot of money to dress up a little more than Capri pants and sneakers — even to put them in Walmart brand dress cloths.

I’ve heard preachers explain from the pulpit while wearing cargo pants and sandals that “ties just weren’t them.”   That’s fine, but could you at least wear long pants and a collared shirt?  You want to present yourself as a credible source of information.  I’m not sure I can take someone in cut-offs seriously when he is trying to lead me to salvation.  Tell the congregation (especially those checking church out for the first time) that you are a believable.  Isn’t worship time our gift of ourselves to God?  Why wouldn’t we want to look our best?

Ok, while I’m on the subject let’s talk about the “baggy pant syndrome” that so many of our teens are lost in.  We were in the park watching some kids play ball while on the other basketball court older boys were playing a shirts and skins pick-up game.  The whole time he was playing this one guy was struggling to run, be ready for the ball, shoot and hold his pants up.  I was scared that I was going to learn more about this boy than I needed to know.  Besides how fun was that for him to not just be able to run and enjoy the game? 

Let me encourage you to take a look at yourself.  You are a precious child of God, a special person.  Take pride in looking your best and presenting yourself appropriately.  If you are a parent, teach your children what it means to dress and present themselves with pride and confidence.  How we wear our cloths says a lot about how we feel about ourselves.

What do you think?

All the best,

KK

P.S. — I also believe appropriate dress for a day off at home or running errands is sweats, no make-up and hair in a pony tail. 

Hello world!

Welcome LCW to the world of blogging.  While I am no expert in the world of the blog, I do know that I love to make my fingers dance across a keyboard creating words that paint pictures in the imagination of others.  Come and join the dance…