Thursday, December 22, 2016

Christmas Time brings Random Thoughts, Memories and a Christmas Show n' Tell of Sorts

A most sweet Sunday.  Janie, myself and Jem at one of our favorite Mediterranean restaurant delis in midtown...Live Christmas jazz was playing.  Don't hold it against us but Jem and I have our mouths full. We do say Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

One of my favorite old churches ever for various reasons.  Sometimes we treat ourselves to a visit there.

Jem, Janie and I sat up in the balcony...Lea took our pic.  Do you see the door behind us?  Where I sat I could see the stained glass window of Jesus holding his little lambs through it.  You see.  ...Many of us have things going on, we are in odd seasons of life for different reasons and the stained glass is just a beautiful, sweet and most poignant reminder of Jesus holding us.  I am reminded that I am His lamb.  Jem tried hard to get a shot of the beautiful window with Jesus holding and taking care of His lambs but it just didn't turn out this time. 

Following:   The view from here.  The original church was started around 1830.  There were Germans, American Indians, African Americans and you name it who attended here.  Did you know I am half German and half Italian?  Don't hold that against me either. ; )  There are days in which I'm not sure which side in the families I'm more disenchanted or enchanted with.  It's a bit like... Are you a good witch or a bad witch...said like Dorothy.  But it's more like...  Are you a good Italian or a bad Italian?  Or you a good German or a bad German?  I have to expound though, my Italian grandparents, the Oddos were the salt of the earth.  We were from the waterfront, not the city. My parents would go to the city to shop for clothing or go to the bookstore, or sometimes bring me to the museum or zoo to visit for a treat.  Down-to-earth were the waterfront Oddos and I am so very thankful for that. There was never talk of a brand name car or what type of a diamond one would wear. Life was about good eats and laughter in my humble Italian grandparents home. The nasa aeronautical crowd I went to school with thought more of education etc. The scientists drove small economy cars, the fishermen drove trucks and now I really do appreciate that part of life there. My family drove cars til they fell apart and paid cash for another brand new car or truck. A vehicle was a practical thing, not show for us.  I guess I've always been out of the box growing up in an older neighborhood instead of suburbs and it took me a while to realize the value of that. ...And I think being out of the box is pretty good. The German side?  My German grandfather was the black sheep and was never in contact with his family.  So, to make a long story short, there are and were some German docs around who were my great uncles (and down the line) and I never knew them.  I was recently blessed to run across a pharmacy owner who is a cousin and that meeting was a bit of an epiphany for me. Jem and I stopped by the pharmacy after noticing my unusual maiden name on the sign.  His very tall stature came walking out to meet me, and I saw my Uncle Wesley's stature.  The pharmacist's father was one of those doctors. Life is strange like that.  It's a mystery many a day.  Always an adventure, sometimes a quiet one and that particular way is fine with me.  Contentment is a missing ingredient in many I think.  I see the great value of contentment and try very hard to keep a healthy grasp on it.

I've been listening to a Bing Crosby Christmas cd, his voice is so soothing to me.  And to me, many times, it's more wholesome and wafts a sweeter spirit than the contemporary Christian music many times that is played.

The boys choir has that special sound in the following clip.  There is just something about it...


A really nice, heartwarming movie?  One of my favorites. It also has Bing Crosby in it as Father O'Malley in 'Going My Way'... Bing Crosby in the part of Father O'Malley reminds me of a special priest who was very kind to me when I was a little girl, Father Connally.  He left our church back then and it left an empty place in this shy little girl with the long brunette hair. I found him and wrote him a letter in the 90s and he sweetly replied and yes, he remembered me. 

Going My Way (1944

(Edit 12.23.16)  You may also be interested in 'The Bells of St. Mary", the sister movie that goes with 'Going My Way'.  Both are wonderful movies.

I heard this one today on Joycie's jazz station.  I've always loved this music, Holiday for Strings (1955) David Rose and His Orchestra.  My mother used to have an exercise record, ...
  1. ... (Warner Bros. Records,1959) ~ Physical Fitness / Exercise album
...that she would exercise to that featured Holiday for Strings.  I loved it so much that when the girls were little we made a recording for our answering machine that featured this music.

I love the end. 

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas, may God be with you,      Amelia

Monday, December 12, 2016

More of The Greatest Generation, I'll Be Seeing You, and...Don't be a Heelot

I thought I'd put up a few more photos of Janie with our great vets from Pearl Harbor!  This is Janie with her genuine Italian Goombadi!  Buddies for sure.  So sweet.

And is this not precious too?  This is Bob.  I think Bob was trying to teach Janie how to ballroom dance, saying "1-2-3" showing Janie the steps....  Janie started laughing at her own confusion and gave up...She just started doing a 60s go-go dance!  Later on the bus, whenever Bob, Janie's dancing buddy would catch Lea's eye, he would put his pointer finger up with a huge toothy smile as if to say...Remember, you are my dancing buddy!  Such a sweetie. 

Janie is home now! Thank God for a safe trip! The privilege of being with our vets was a lifetime chance as I'm sure you would agree.  So grateful and happy Janie was able to do that!  She was so very blessed by these brave gentlemen and the memory of those who went before us on those ships.  It blesses my heart that she was able to go do that. 

The homefront here, I took this a few mornings ago as dark clouds were coming in, I thought this was appropriate for the Pearl Harbor anniversary with the contrast of the American flag.

Here is a video with WWII footage with Bing Crosby I found this and thought was neat...

'I'll Be Seeing You'

I've been listening to a World War II Armed Forces cd set with the old Bing Crosby genuine radio programs.  Wow.  The country really pulled together and God was honored.

It's becoming late now....

What's for supper?  Zucchini with pasta gravy over brown rice pasta with ciabatta rolls for those who can have wheat. 

We are going to have a family movie night and watch Dolly Parton's Christmas Christmas of Many Colors:  Circle of Love.  Great-great movie! 

loading ...   I'll be seeing you!  Signing off from the Forest Cathedral, Amelia

You may enjoy one of my blogs from several years ago, 'Don't Be a Heelot'

I hope you are having a sweet Christmas season meditating on the real Christmas.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The Greatest Generation. WWII Vets. Pearl Harbor. Do You Know How Beautiful You Are?

Our oldest daughter, is in Hawaii at the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor.  Tears stream down my face as I see these photos...

We love all of our vets and our hearts are so blessed and so touched by what you all do and have done.  Our hearts overflow with gratefulness for your great valor and sacrifice. 

So happy that Janie is there to volunteer and share that love and appreciation. 

This photo is of Pearl Harbor vet and homicide detective, Jim Leavelle who escorted Lee Harvey Oswald on that day in 1963 when Oswald was shot.  Janie relays he is such a sweet gentleman and insisted that she wear his famous hat. 

Lee Harvey Oswald being shot by Jack Ruby as Oswald is being moved by police, 1963.jpg

 Awesome in the true sense.
 These men are true Greatness...How can we thank and honor them enough. 
 Remember.  Remember.  Remember.
 Pictures say it all.

All of our vets are beautiful.  They are everywhere and we appreciate them so much.

Here is a blog post I wrote several years ago of Joycie and me at the grocery store as a most precious WWII vet shared his memories and heart with us, one of our favorite things to do is having the privilege of talking to our vets as we can find these treasures in our everyday lives.

As a middle-aged parent, a homeschool mom, I feel like I put my very life into our girls...And now it is such a blessing to see fruits in their very lives.   God is so good, maybe we aren't able to do these things but our kids can. : )

That is a Blessing.

Do you know how beautiful you all are?

God bless America.

Today I am thankful for our veterans, the glory men.  Do they know how beautiful they are?


Hope to be able to add some more greatness soon...Janie tells me she has seen CBS news there; they did a neat mannequin video and more I'm sure, as well as FOX news interviewing.

You can go to 'The Greatest Generation' on Facebook to see more greatness along with the popular mannequin video of our vets and sweet volunteers (looks like a dimensional Norman Rockwell painting).  Janie is in it posing with her camera from afar. So neat I think!

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  
 -Hebrews 12:1

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Little Gifts and Blessings this Holy Day Season

The little Blessing of Muffie.  This afternoon he came quietly crawling up next to me.

More than several-several years ago Joycie was going down the street in our old suburb and this little fella was sitting right in the middle of the street looking at her in her car.  She figured he belonged to someone and slowly went around him, he stayed in the middle and would not leave the spot.  She pulled her car in a U-turn and went back, opened the door and the little guy hopped in!  He rolled around on his back so happy!  He was either very lost for a very long time or very neglected.  A little ball of matt and his collar rusted shut.  He is terrified til this day of rain.  I remember our vet back in town, Dr. Manicotti, wide-eyed, telling us quietly when Muffie was having trouble walking one morning...We don't know anything about this dog...  I was tickled in a way, he said it very kindly as the same way I would talk to one of my little girls.  I'm sure he didn't want us to be disappointed or upset if there were to be anything wrong with the little guy.  Well, it's been a long time and the little guy has turned out be a sweet little boss man.  ; ) He is a darling.  Muffie.  A Gift.

This morning, Jem tells me Muffie is cold, so I retrieved his coat for him. ; )  He is such a snaggle-tooth cutie here.

 Very Muffie.  I think he was tiring of that coat, I took it off after he warmed up a bit!

The mornings are quiet here usually.  Sometimes quietly hopping with lots of girl activity with our daughters.  One studies, one talks a business deal over the phone, one is wondering about a new job...Always something.  Our married daughter is getting better, and we're thanking God, making an almost miraculous way for her to go to a popular natural doctor and writer.  This doctor is turning some serious stuff around God's way.  Gifts.  Miracles.  Every one. 

 Sunset the other night...Heavens declare a sweet glory...

 Here is a retro kitty ornament Janie bought at an old German ornament shop recently in honor of Elbie our newest kitty-baby.
 This is one of my precious Dollar General finds... I love retro snowmen...They are so sweet I think.
 Our tree dons icicles for the 40s look. : )  Gotta have icicles.  Yes indeedie!

 Elbie.  Such a little boy...I think he's been a-playin' under the cars again... He says "I didn't do anything." 

 I notice the bright  green greenery on the grey colored oak.  Perhaps we can be that evergreen to others in the Christmas Holy Season and always....

 May we be the Christ bearers and Life to others.

 Here's some Holy-Day Holiday Season fun for you!  It's that time of year, and we love Bing Crosby! This is a sweet, cheerful song.  Last year I had the pleasure of meeting Bing Crosby's veterinarian from those glory years.  We sat with him on a hayride during a local autumn festival amidst dripping oaks and southern homes lining a river...  The fella is a local, an older, charming gentleman. I recently saw him giving a historical talk on the corner in smalltown  to a group of people...So neat.  Such a cast of characters.  Gifts.

Have a sweet evening all.   Amelia