Posts Tagged With: Memories

Connecting

Have you ever looked at the internet tab as you are waiting for a site to download? Did you notice it says connecting and swirls until it connects to where you want to go?

Day 5 - Lunch at Panera Bread

Photo credit: ohdearbarb)

Connecting…

Sometimes the internet connects quickly and we are so happy we did not have to wait and wait. Sometimes is seems to take forever to connect.

Are we like that too? Do we connect quickly with others or is it hard for us to connect to others? Can we slow down our lives to make time for others? This past few weeks I have spent so much time connecting and reconnecting with friends. The visits and talks we have had over tea, lunch or dinner have been amazing. And the meals delicious!

My best friend from grade school and I had lunch last week after years of a Christmas card friendship as our children were growing. Even though we only lived twenty minutes apart our life path took us in different directions. Thank goodness for the connection of Christmas cards each year. She picked me up and I don’t think we stop talking and catching up for the three hours we visiting and ate Panera’s soup and sandwich.

What about Facebook? Sometimes a “friend” uses FB as an outreach for help through a rough time, sometimes it to share good news or daily moods, and sometimes it reconnects relationships. Summer of 2010 was a high school reunion year for me. The committee posted the reunion event on Facebook for all the classmates to respond. It was so good to see so many classmates at the reunion and then to keep connected with them through their posts and pictures. I love celebrating the pictures of some that are already grandparents (unbelievable, since I don’t feel old enough to be a grandparent) and some that have children graduating. I enjoy FB for the way it connects me to near and far away friends.

Connect through calls, visits, and cards. Share a comment on how you connect with those in your life.

So now the next time you look at the internet tab that is swirling around waiting to connect, pause and realize how many connections you have in your life and how you can foster those connections each day.

Call a friend and have a Panera lunch…
Embrace life and laugh with someone…and CONNECT!

Connecting..

 

 

 

Categories: Balance, Gratefulness | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Happy Thanksgiving 2011!!

I am blessed with my children and my husband.
I am blessed with health in my family.
I am blessed with the love of dear friends.
I am blessed with a home for warmth and neighbors who care.
I am blessed with people who have touched my life this past year, in small ways that they will never completely understand, but have altered my outlook, my focus or my future.
I am blessed with amazing young children that I am able to work with as we share faith together.
I am blessed with the ability to laugh and to make others laugh.
I am blessed with sight, to see all the beauty that was created for us all to soak in and bask in its glory.
I am blessed with a faith that allows me to be in relationship with Our Lord Jesus, who above all is my guide, my friend, my teacher and my father.

I AM BLESSED – HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Categories: Balance, Family, Gratefulness, Holiday | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Family game nights

I’m sitting here working on my laptop and out of the corner of my eye I see three Wii guitars.
Guitar Hero took the country by storm a few years ago and has morphed into Band Hero and other active family style video games.
But what has family game nights become? When my children were younger, family nights were sitting together around the kitchen table playing card games and board games. We loved Trivial Pursuit, Apples to Apples and Brain Quest, but were most inclined to pull out our Dominoes or a Card game.

We loved family nights of UNO, Phase 10 or just a deck of cards for Gin or Seven’s. Dad would make our children a bowl of ice cream or popcorn and we would settle in for a couple of hours. Laughing and talking, having a great time.
I remember when we moved to the couches. It was Scene It.
A trivial game using video – so much fun and so much more comfortable on the couch, but we lost something – the circle of conversation. Don’t get me wrong, I love Scene It and would love to play anyone, anytime, but it changed the circle at the table into a line on couches facing the tv instead of each other. Video games tore at family nights.

Video games, PS, Wii, XBox, etc, pulled our children individually to the screen. Oh manufacturers have managed to have 2-player games and family games, like Band Hero, but again it’s a different feel on family game night. It just feels different.

I LOVE watching my son play the guitar on the Wii, dreaming of some day being that fluid, precise and animated. He makes it seem so effortless. Or watching my daughter play the drums along with him to Aerosmith or Taylor Swift. We still have the laughter and love, but it just feels different. Something has been lost…do family still own a deck of cards?

Friday I had a hair appointment and as I opened the door to enter the salon, to my left was a mother waiting with a 3-year-old daughter. This adorable little girl had a toy cell phone and was talking away to no one with her head cocked to her right shoulder to hold the phone and her blonde curls bouncing behind her. Three years old! I’m sure she’ll have a real cellphone before 7 years old! Technology has so many positive attributes, like Skyping with my sister in China for 20 minutes yesterday, but do we pay attention to the attributes of family life that are slipping away? Where’s the doll that was a three-year old’s best friend? Has it been replaced by toy cell phones?

My family gathered last month to say farewell to my sister that was moving to Shanghai – we were all together, my mother’s six children and all her grandchildren and one great-grandchild to boot! Twenty-seven in all. We decided to fit in a game night at the Caschetta’s! And what a night it was. Everyone was crammed into our sunroom while playing Loaded Questions. This hilarious game can be played on the board provided (as per the instructions) or by just sitting around asking the questions in a large group (as we improvised). It is a wonderful way to learn about each other, to laugh until you have tears in your eyes and to uncover secret dreams and ambitions. Family game night was recaptured!!

I also created a “family quiz” for my sister’s family that was leaving. All my siblings, nephews and nieces sent me facts about themselves and Toni, Matt, Margaret and Frank guessed who it pertained to. We kept track of which Barton knew the most about family members. Sitting around my brothers living room laughing and loving each other – everyone enjoyed pulling a question to ask and seeing who knew the answer. Often there were more than one person in the room that could say “me”. We discovered that “who owned a red convertible” applied to six family members!! It was so much fun. This is what family game night should be…
No one wanted the questions to end…what a great memory!

Reclaim family game night – and not in front of a television!
Pull out your dusting deck of cards, create your own trivial game or call over friends if your children are not home. Learn a new card game or enjoy the treasured ones of your childhood and circle around a table with LAUGHTER and LOVE and you will receive great blessings!!

When you go into the house, greet the family with a blessing. Matthew 10:12

Categories: Balance, Family | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Cleaning your windows

The story is told of an old woman who lived in a small house.
Every morning she would get up and make her cup of coffee and sit by her favorite chair right next to the window.
Everyday, this was her routine. On this particular day, she peeked through the window and she made an ugly face. A disgusted face.
She could see her new neighbor in her back yard hanging up her clothes to dry.
The old women ranted under her breath, “That lady does not know how to wash her clothes! Look at’um! They’re hideous! I ought to go and teach her how to wash her clothes right now!”
This happened for a couple of months, and every single time she would see her new neighbor drying her clothes, she would make her rantings.
One afternoon, the new neighbor’s kids where playing ball in the back yard after the mother hung up their clothes to dry. Suddenly, the kids some how broke the old woman’s window. The old woman walked frantically to the scene of the crime. She looked out her broken window, and was in shock. “The neighbors clothes?” She said, “They’re so, so, clean!”
The old woman hadn’t cleaned her window in over 30 years!
The dirty window impaired her vision.

Are we seeing the world through dirty windows?
Do we see what we want to see or are we open to the truth?
Is your vision impaired?
Sometimes we are too close-minded to see what is truly in front of us.

We sit and complain from our “kitchen chair” – we think we can do things better – we are the perpetual arm-chair quarterback and the back seat driver.
We judge others and situations we do not understand.
We do not realize our errors, until the “window is broken” – we need a shatter moment in our lives to bring us back to reality sometimes.

Then once the window is broken, the SUN shines through, we are almost blinded by the light and the truth – We can no longer close our eyes!
We have to admit our weaknesses and faults, embrace the truth and reach out to others to help clean their windows and
LET THE LIGHT SHINE IN!!!

Categories: Balance | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tourist in my home town

It was an amazing  day in Chicago today.

We love to spend Father’s Day in the city and today was no exception. Our family of four become tourists in a place we have been visiting for twenty years. Last year we hopped on the double decker bus for an hour tour around the city. Even though I can’t imagine how many time we have gone into Chicago for museums, shows, dinners and parks, we discovered places and history we did not know. So this year we did the same, we were tourist again today and had a lot of laughs.

Today was a Segway day. We have never been on these two wheeled personal transportation systems, but we figured that balancing and edging for years skiing may be to our advantage. And is was! After a short intro, we were off and moving. Traveling from Navy Pier to the Museum Campus, we saw the sites and snapped some pics. The Yacht Club, Buckingham Fountain, the Skyline, all the city has to offer. It was a beautiful day.

Then after dinner at Navy Pier, we were walking back to our car we saw Vietnam Veterans under a small tent answering questions and selling t-shirts. Then we realized that behind where they stood was the “Moving Wall”. The replica of the Vietnam Memorial in DC that travels the country bringing awareness and honor to those that have served, are serving and will serve. It was a great way to end a perfect day…Remembering all the fathers, brothers, and sons, honoring their memories.
Right in our backyard…and we would have never seen it if we were not tourists for the day.

Sometimes we become so busy in our lives we forget all the wonders we have around us.
What wonders are in your neighborhood?
When was the last time you spent a day discovering them?
Families spend time in front of screens all day.
Our televisions, our computers, our laptops in front of the televisions…our smartphones, our tablets, our ereaders…

Discover the wonders just outside your door.
Drive into the city, explore the normal, and find new discoveries in familiar places.

We love to stop into a restaurant off the beaten path. A mom and pop diner with delicious food.
A farmer’s market with delicious fresh fruit. An art show on the streets and alleys.
Maybe even music in the park.
What can you discover in the ordinary places you know.

So get up…get out of your comfort zone…and be a tourist in your home town!

Categories: America, Balance, Gratefulness | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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