1230. Those whom God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. ~Author Unknown

To have and to hold
from this day forward
for better or for worse,
for richer or for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish
until death do us part.
~Author Unknown

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He was a he, a man seven years older than she, and she was a she, an ingénue about to complete her final year in college. And 53 years ago today, the he and the she became a we. Having met in January and becoming engaged in May James and I were married on August 17th, l963 by his college roommate, best friend, and ordained minister, Ron Engle. Since that day James and I have traversed side by side the valleys of better or worse, richer or poorer, sickness or health and struggled through times good and bad. But thankfully, as of yet, nothing has put asunder what God joined together so very long ago.

“The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son.” ~Matthew 22:2  ✝

 

1193. Imprinted on our heart is the exact moment we fell in love with the beach. ~Judith Frenette

What we remember from
childhood we remember forever —
permanent images, stamped,
inked, imprinted, eternally seen.
~Edited excerpt
from Cynthia Ozick

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Oh, the golden age of the barefoot time,
While life was a fairy tale sung in rhyme,
When phantoms grim of a future day
Were hid in the mists of the far away…
Off for a swim on an afternoon,—
The moments—why would they fly so soon!
The rosy skies of our barefoot days.
~Excerpted lines from a poem
by Adelbert Farrington Caldwell

On the far left in the collage above are my great uncle and I on the beach in Southern California. He was one of my most favorite people on the planet, and before my Daddy came home from the War, he frequently took me the half a block down to the shores of the beautiful blue Pacific. Even after daddy got home and until we moved to Texas, the beach remained a cherished part of my daily reality. Sadly the photo of uncle and me is so faded now that you can’t even make out the water anymore. So I added the other pictures in the collage that I found on Pinterest to show what my earliest memories of the beach look like. Although my photo has faded, the imprint of those images in my mind’s eye is still brilliantly vivid so much so that 7 decades later I’ve never forgotten the people and places of my childhood. They are treasures that I horde and keep safe in my heart because I know that childlike faith, along with childlike love, are an open road to God’s heart.

And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” ~Matthew 18:3 ✝

1048. God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well. ~Voltaire

My work is loving the world.
Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird —
equal seekers of sweetness.
Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.
Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.

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Are my boots old? Is my coat torn?
Am I no longer young, and still not half-perfect? Let me
keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,

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which is mostly standing still and learning to be
astonished.
The phoebe, the delphinium.
The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture.
Which is mostly rejoicing, since all ingredients are here,

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which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart
and these body-clothes, a mouth
with which to give shouts of joy
to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam…
~Excerpted lines from the poem, The Messenger by Mary Oliver

I am 73 years old and nearly six feet tall, and yet there are things in life that still make me dance a jig and squeal with joy like a child. And I’m not one bit sheepish about doing it either. As many of you know I absolutely adore Mary Oliver’s poetry. It’s as if she somehow managed to crawl around in my soul and heart and then spilled out what she found therein into her poetry. So I bought 4 new books of her poetry at Amazon last week and when they came today, they were greeted with none other than the same unabashed, joyful squeals. Afterwards there was a round of eeny, meeny, miny, mo before picking one of the four to open first. Then I turned to the first poem in it, read the one above, and guess what? I joyfully squealed some more. Damn, but I love that woman’s thoughts and poetry!!!

When I was in college, there were occasions when my friends and I tried to come up with the names of five people throughout history that we’d most like to meet and spend time with. I’m not sure who I would have picked or did pick back then, but at 73 I know for sure who the top 3 on my list would be now–Jesus(God), Claude Monet, and Mary Oliver. The remaining two are still up for grabs, but that’s not to say that they aren’t lots of splendid candidates to choose from. I pray that each and everyone one of you who’ve read this also have something or someone that thrills you to the point of at least wanting to squeal with animated pleasure!

And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. ~Matthew 18:3   ✝

985. Well, one can’t get over the habit of being a little girl all at once… ~Lucy Maud Montgomery


The reluctance to put away childish
things may be a requirement of genius.
~Rebecca Pepper Sinkler

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I am often accused of being childish.  I prefer to interpret that as child-like. I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things. I tend to exaggerate and fantasize and embellish. I still listen to instinctual urges. I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind. I never water my garden without soaking myself. It has been after such times of joy that I have achieved my greatest creativity and produced my best work. ~Leo F. Buscaglia

I resemble all the remarks above, and I’m darned proud of it. Mike Dolan said that we should “anticipate the day as if it was our birthday and we are turning six again.” And that works quite well for me thank you very much. Perhaps that’s why I squealed with delight late last night when it began to snow on my blog. I had forgotten all about WP’s snow option and was delightfully beside myself when it started to fall across my computer screen. We don’t get a whole lot of snow, if any, where I live, but now I know that for an entire month, it will be snowing all day long and into the night on my blog. How much more merry and bright can it get?! Love, love, love it, and so I refuse to put away the fabulous “childish” things that are part of the miracles during the season of lights. And another thing, what’s the best part of the Christmas tree? Isn’t it the lights? Well I think so, and that’s why the last two years, I’ve put a lighted outside metal tree in my house instead of the traditional tree. There’s no icicles nor ornaments nor any other decorations on it. It’s just the glowing, twinkling, multi-colored luminescent glory of elfin lights!!! How’s that for being a kid??? And a genius, I might add! Oh December is going to be a fun month this time around because the little girl in me is alive and well again!

He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. ~Matthew 18:2-4   ✝