Tag: life

One Foot in the Present and One in the Past

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Do you ever get that feeling that you are living in the wrong period of time.  Don’t get me wrong I love all the new modern technology.  A lot of technology has helped me in this world. Digital hearing aid, streamers, and personal loops have made a huge difference for me.  I also love the internet.  What I am getting at is crafting, cooking, gardening.  I know people do these things now in time but I don’t believe it is as prevalent than generations before us.

I enjoy having my garden.  Snapping peas or beans, making a BLT with a homegrown tomato is wonderful.  It sure beats a store bought any day of the week.  Seeing the plants grow, getting to maturity get me excited for canning.  Another skill that is declining.  I love to water bath can and to pressure can.  Knowing we have food and meals on a shelf is a satisfying feeling.  You never know when money may be tight, storms and you can’t get to a store, or a zombie apocalypse.  All very plausible and canned goods would be imperative.  Can you tell I am thinking spring!

Cooking from scratch is another lost art.  There is plenty of people that cook but there are so many box meals, take out, fast food.  Don’t get me wrong we do that also but I am trying so hard not to.  I want to use basic whole food ingredients for my family.  I want and enjoy making a meal from start to end.  Can be a little stressed on nights where there are evening activities but I get it accomplished most nights.  Knowing what is in our food I believe is the first step in trying to get healthy.  Slow and steady wins the race I have been told.  Call me old fashioned but I feel if I am home before my husband it is my job to make a meal for us all.  Minus the tablecloth, good china, a dress and a string of pearls.

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Lastly is crafts.  I love crafting.  I love seeing something in a magazine or online and trying to make it.  If that would be painting, jewelry, or decorating.  My main craft I go back to for almost 30 years is knitting.  For a birthday when I was a teenager I received a wicker basket with knitting needles and blue and yellow yarn from my aunt.  She taught me to knit and I made my first scarf that was an homage to my Swedish heritage.  I have left knitting behind at times but it is like an old friend and always welcomes me back.  When I attended college in New Mexico blankets were knitted for people.  It was a good past time.  Scarfs and hats have been made for my children.  For a while I knitted and sold my items under, Ausome Knits.  My knitting needles have been out again this winter.  A new scarf for my son, a couple birthday gifts are being made.  Tonight at church we are having a crafting night.  Bring what ever projects you are working on and we can fellowship and work on them together.

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Now there are some skills I wish I could get a little stronger at.  Sewing, I have a couple sewing machines.  I would like to boost my skills in this area. Also small needle crafts like cross stitch.  I have never done this but I think it looks like another good past time.

Could I live in another time period.  I think I could.  It wouldn’t be as easy as now but heck I have never owned or had a dishwasher so that dreaded chore would be the same.  Going to have to live one foot in the present and one in the past.

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A Burden

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I have a woman’s name that is lying heavy on my heart.  I just learned about this woman yesterday.  It consumed my thoughts all day.  Let me back up and I will explain.

I arrived at work yesterday.  I am a personal care attendant in a private home.  Dr Phil was on the TV when I arrived.  I have never been a huge Dr Phil fan but I watch it and more often than not I can get pulled into the episode.  Dr Phil had a guest Bethany Storro, a woman who survived having acid thrown into her face.  What makes this shocking is Bethany did this to herself.  A failed suicide that had to be accompanied by horrible pain.  When she realized she wasn’t going to die, and made a huge personal mistake, she said she was attacked.  She said someone did this to her, a big mistake.  She didn’t point out a certain person but she gave a description.  She later retracted her statement and took the blame for the act.  She was charged and went to court were fines and time were given to her.  This is where the story ends in the newspapers.  I researched more on Bethany yesterday and what I read was horrible.  She was told to die in these articles.  She was called dumb, idiotic, ugly and deserved to die.  When did common human decency go out the window.

That was the back story, now why this is lying on my heart.  Bethany had a speech impediment. I could hear it and thought maybe acid near her mouth might have caused this.  Dr Phil did more questions and was very kind with Bethany.  It then was brought out.  Bethany is hard of hearing.  She has a deaf accent.  She poured her soul out with Dr Phil that because of her lack of hearing she has always felt like a burden.  This brought instant tears to my eyes.  She felt like a burden for her lack of hearing.  This ripped at my heart.  How was she raised? Did she have parents that advocated for her? Did she have a mentor to show her that life can be good? All these questions swirled in my mind.

I work as a deaf/hard of hearing role model with Lifetrack in Minnesota.  It is a new groundbreaking program that pairs a family that just got a diagnosis of hearing loss for their precious child with an adult who has hearing loss.  They can learn and see that this isn’t a dark road they have to walk alone.  These kids can do anything.  These children can grab the brass ring like any other child their age.  Deaf and Hard of Hearing kids are not a burden because they can’t hear.  I have attended many Hands and Voices events and I see children that are full of life and energy and promise not a burden.  These children are tought to self advocate.  A very hard skill to learn for anyone but they are learning it young.  Skills that will take them far.  I have learned so much from these young children to young adults, they are remarkable.

Bethany of course has mental illness on top of her hearing loss but I just sense it all was a cumulative effect from her hearing and her speech.  Did she learn to self advocate, did she have adults that advocated for her as a child?  I look into my own life again with a son that has an IEP (Individual Education Plan).  He has had an IEP since age 3 and we know he will have one for sure for the next 3 years to 5th grade.  We have tried to do the best for him.  He doesn’t have huge issues but every smaller hurdle he has we have been there with him.  From a fluctuating hearing loss, to being on the Autism spectrum, to learning disabilities.  We are helping him and trying to teach him how to self advocate for himself.  Advocating as an adult is hard, you put yourself out there and exposed.  It is daunting at times but so valuable and needed.

People are not a burden.  People need a hand at times, people need help. We have a job as a fellow human being to help them.  Bethany ended the interview with saying she was sorry.  She was sorry for the pain and problems she caused.  Dr Phil had the perfect response, you don’t need to apologize there is no need.  You have a hearing impairment which lead to speech problems.  You never felt like you fit in.  You now have a burned face and still show your face and get out there.  You are brave and you have grown.  Now Bethany can read lips and says she still see’s people saying she is ugly, she is stupid, and she should have died.  Please have compassion people, this world would be so different if we can just remember no one is perfect and we are not a burden.  We all have a purpose and we are all wonderfully made.

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Working on ME

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At the end of last school year I received a card, I should say my husband received a card in the mail from his employer.  It was a program that assisted you in healthy living and changing habits and losing weight.  Chad wasn’t interested in the program but I was so I signed up and it has been great.  Everything was online, even a scale that they sent me sends everything through WIFI to track your progress.  I happened to start the program the week we moved to our new house.  So it was truly new beginnings.  I have a lot of weight to lose.  Not that extra 10-15 pounds you hear women complain about consistently.  I have told very few people I am doing this program just because of fear of failure and how much I need to lose.  I am not using shakes, surgery or supplements.  Not that these things are wrong but I wanted to try and make life long changes.

I have finally had a few people come up to me and ask if I have lost some weight.  I am a tad over 50 pounds lost.  I have a lot more to go but I am proud of the progress I have made.  I notice I have more energy and buying a couple new pieces of clothes have been fun.  I hope to keep a slow and steady pace for the future.

I have been walking more and more.  I want to add in some strength exercises so a kettle bell was just purchased.  I am excited to be able to do more and more and my kids are excited to go with me and walk with me.

A good friend of mine has reintroduced me to yoga.  I did yoga when I was in college and really enjoyed it.  A couple weeks ago we went to a yoga session in Morris.  I loved it!  I kept waiting for it to get really hard to the point I couldn’t do it but that wasn’t the case.  It was a meditation yoga and I was able to do the full class.  I would love to go back to that class once or twice a month.  Last night we went to a regular yoga class in town.  Oh my, I made it through but it was so tough.  I am not in shape.  I have about zero balance so doing these things in class I felt like I was going to die.  I finished the class, let me tell you there was more than once I wanted to get my mat and walk out the door.  One thing I really learned last night is I am not at that level.  I need beginners yoga and work up to that.  Yes I pushed myself and I got a good work out but I felt lost and extremely awkward the whole class.  In saying that I am proud I stuck with it to the end.

To add to the stress of trying something new is trying to understand what the instructor was saying.  Squaring your body with the mat and turning to watch her talk was tough.  A lot of times her back was to us while she talked or her face was down to the mat while talking.  Add in some music playing- if you are deaf/hard of hearing you get it.  You aren’t going to get anything out of what is going on.

I will try again.  I am not sure if it will be that class or a more beginner class.  I won’t give up.  I give huge virtual hugs to my friend, Beth.  She has been such an encourager.  I don’t think I would be where I am now if it wasn’t for her.  She is always giving me a compliment or a little push to do something more.  I am very thankful she is in my life.

So I will keep walking, and working.  I love cooking and canning and that works great for this because I can make my family food with no preservatives, no dyes, no added items.  I am changing my whole family without their direct knowledge.  My youngest who used to be so picky has learned to love grilled chicken that was marinated in a light italian dressing.  My oldest loves to cut all kinds of veggies for a stir fry.  My husband who was a 6 cans of soda full of sugar guy, is down to 2 cans a day and one is diet.  It is slow baby steps but they say slow and steady wins the race.

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What’s your mountain

My boys, husband and son, went out ice fishing this morning.  What a glorious day today.  Not a cloud in the sky and no wind and 42 degrees.  Now for Minnesota standards that is a regular heat wave where coats, hats and mittens will stay in the car.  Greta and I made our way to church this morning.  I heard a wonderful message that I think can be applicable to all of us in some part of our life.  

What Is Our Mountain or our Giant??  

We all have obstacles in this life.  If you don’t have something that is testing us I believe your head is in the sand and not looking at life head on.  We may have trouble in relationships, financial, health, children, jobs…the list is endless.  These are our Mountains or Giants in life.  David faced Goliath that was his literal giant.  He kept his eyes on God and he was able to defeat that giant right between his eyes.  We have a God that will help us through all these trials of life.  He holds our hand or he holds us if we need the support.  He will help us pass threw these mountain passes and by these Giant armies that look like they are out for us.  We need to keep our eyes on Christ and not the trials that life throw at us.  God will reach out grab our hand and lead us threw this thing called life.  

I have learned numerous times in life that sometimes it takes falling to your knees and remembering that we aren’t in this alone and we need reinforcement to help.  I need help with my marriage, children, job, health and all of life.  I don’t have the answers.  

I pray I can keep my eye on God and reach my hand out and ask for help.  That is the way I will defeat my giant and cross my mountain.  

I hope you all can start this week with peace and knowledge that we have an Awesome God and he Reigns from Heaven to Earth.