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HOME IS WHERE…

Home is one of the hardest words to define.  Is it the building? Is it the geographic location? Is it where I’m from but not where I am at the moment? Is it the collection of people who are relatives? Can it be a group of people who aren’t related? What if you can’t define home?

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Being a product of the “baby boom generation,” I finished high school in the mid 60s living in a peaceful, suburban area where all the kids looked alike—middle income and white.  There was another world out there that most of us never saw—the race riots, horrors of the War in Vietnam, new discoveries in space and astonishing acts of violence that took the lives of a president, a presidential candidate’s and a race relations leader.

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I was on the tail end of a generation where young women were making their choices of an advanced degree in college or homemaking and motherhood.  I never regretted the road I chose.  I just see it so differently now in a generation twice removed how the roles have changed & women are allowed/accepted women in many roles i.e., professional wife/mother; single mother; adoptive mother to children of the family or from other families and even foreign countries.  Lines are more blurry now of who is related to whom and who is a good role model.

I know the definition and the difference between home & family. I know the words don’t mean the same to everyone.  For me, the choice was part of who I was growing up to become.  I completely felt the need to follow my young husband first to college, then into the ministry, then the military, and back to college to complete a degree.

Before I was old enough to vote, I was a mother.  I became a mother the second time 2 years & 8 days from the birth of my first child.  I reveled in that role with full commitment and understanding.  How could I achieve that so young? Because I had seen family and home in my life as being the safe place where we live.  It is the place we hone our skills of personality & acceptance.

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There is forever that “leaving” that happens when children reach a certain age.  And who in the world can find what that perfect age is?  For me it was a way to be with the man I loved and start our family.  Those little tiny packages that came on hot summer days in the years of 1967 & 1969 were the most precious little human beings I had ever seen.  They were the perfect companion for a life I was to live.  They were sweet, loving and so cute; they had tempers, crying spells and their own little personalities.  And, in the end, I was left to build and modify the mold in which they would be shaped.

Experiencing some changes just as the beauty of glass comes after the heat of the elements,  I was alone to take them into their teen years & adulthood.  How could I do it?  Who would I lean on and turn to?

Family

…there’s no other word that conjures up for me the feelings of peace and strength.  In family I find encouragement and understanding.  I had such a huge lesson to teach my children and I didn’t know where to start.  How could I instill in them the importance of relying on each other?  How could I be sure they would always do the right thing when I wasn’t always there?  What would be their choices when I let them make those choices.

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Suffice it to say I was in fear of this huge responsibility.  But, time was marching on; and as each orbit marked a day upon a day, I knew one of those days was THE moment when I let them choose and make their path.

Oh, how could I be sure they’d ever come back home?  What would I do if they failed?  How could I be there for them when time & space wouldn’t allow it?

Love

…the never-ending self-sufficient heart-warming kind of feelings that would translate to trust and safety.  Did I need to worry about them in their lives?  Of course, I would but I didn’t NEED to because I had equipped them with the best tools I knew: love, trust, faith, friends, family and a HUGE amount of self-worth and purpose to which I added load of hugs.  I then added my words of trust and confirmed to them that I knew they had made good choices.  It was such a hard time, BUT I EVENTUALLY GREW UP!

Forty plus years later I can see I need not have worried about how and what they would choose.  They have gone through the same questions I did.  They have made good and bad choices.  They have learned from certain mistakes but they have kept their faith and love close to their heart and have given it to those with whom they surround themselves.

I didn’t need to worry at all.  I didn’t need to lose sleep waiting up for them.  I had no real reasons to check on them even when they said “it’s all good.”

I didn’t have to…but I wanted to!  I wanted them to remember that home & family are the place you find the strength to take your first baby steps and those young adult bigger steps and the huge giant steps when you create your own little human beings.

I humbly say, “I’ve done well.” But so can they…they can be proud of where they are in their life now and what it took to get there.

Want to come home? Need to come home? Sure that’s an option, but I’m much happier they’ve made their own homes with those they love.

Good job, kids!

This post is dedicated to my children who recently had August birthdays..and to my granddaughters who are on their own now making choices.  My advice is:  pray about your life; work at it; stay true to yourself; think of others…and most of all…learn how to love and be loved.  Life is a fabulous gift…use it well. 
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Johnny Mathis “I’m Coming Home” 
 
 
 

Picture Me There

Please scroll down my blog to view new photos/images on the right sidebar.

You may be, like me, on a journey – you’ll understand those old roads ready for your new journeys.  Start now!

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Has a window or door recently closed or opened in your life? Take it as a new opportunity.

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I consider myself “bilingual” because I speak MUSIC, too.  Almost any kind of music speaks to my heart, and I feel it in my soul.

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If you want a few minutes of solace, scroll down my blog and enjoy the images/photos.

Leave me a comment if you like them!

Ode to Nothingness!

I’m sure at one time or another you’ve been just absolutely BLANK–nothing is in your mind let alone anything that is interesting.

Sometimes your mind is just VACANT…but a Blogger or Writer is supposed to have loads of material…so they write about it.  Yes, IT! You must write about the NOTHINGNESS that sits before you.

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It’s even worse when you are a Traveler & Dreamer and that BARE and EMPTY feeling comes over you.  Where do you go? What do you look for? Oh, thank goodness, there’s a sign up ahead that will help me.

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Oh, No! It feels like a episode of Twilight Zone and I’m traveling in Area 51…

Now I wish I was an artist so I could draw you a picture of my mind!

But because there’s nothing there how can I give you details?

Because my mind is void of thought, I can only say:

Words have deserted me.

I am silenced!

It finally happened!

 

It’s About a Journey

A new day begins
And the work continues
Don’t be discouraged
that it’s a life-long job
YOU ARE WORTH IT!

strength

 

© Van Hess and New Journeys on Old Roads, 2013-14

 

Closed Doors

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When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.

Abraham Lincoln

 

 

Rain, rain, go away…

 

People pray for it
They write about it
Some curse it
Many welcome it
Some run through it
Some run into it
Some run from it

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What is the one thing that can elicit the most

emotions

actions

re-actions

It’s simply RAIN

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As a child did you ever sing

“rain, rain go away; come again some other day.”

Learn to live in it

with it

through it

Try to praise it

write odes to it

sing about it

It’s only RAIN!

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It will pass

it will end

it will move on

Don’t be caught

looking the other way

or you’ll miss the very best thing

of all about rain…

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The Rainbow

Alone in the Crowd

 

What does it take to stand out in the crowd?

  • conviction of purpose

  • commitment to values

  • courage to own every decision 

Sometimes it takes just one act of courage; sometimes it takes many occasions strung together through a lifetime.

Turn your uniqueness into the loudest voice among the crowd. Make the right choice for you.  Stand strong through it all. 

 

You’ll never regret an action based on your conviction. 

But you might regret remaining silent.

Ode to Spring!

Well, finally! Spring is here!

Some may not be sure of that fact if they’re looking out their window today.  But I’m sure it’s spring…the calendar says so.

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I wonder…as ancients were following moon cycles and earth’s rotations and printing calendars–if they thought there should be some dramatic drum roll to herald in each season of the year.  I think of all of the seasons, spring should come with a shout if only to replace that dormant winter that is slowly—some say too slowly this year—leaving the dead and dying leaves and debris in your back yard.  Have you heard those small cries from your shed?  It’s your rake, broom and hoe just yearning to come out and play.

snow lake  We think of winter as the time when the earth recedes under and into itself to commensurate and ponder the questions of its existence.  We tend to use that time in the same manner so it’s time for us to wake up our body and mind.  Winter may even say that it rests so well while blanketed and snuggled beneath winter’s cover that it can stay as long as it wants.  Who can make winter leave that hibernating slumber?

SPRING CAN! That’s who!

robin redbreast in my yard Spring can break forth, finding its way up through frozen tundra and dead grasses and piled leaves.  Spring has the added expressions of the flowers’ smiles, the birds’ songs and the caressing breezes necessary to push away a sleeping winter.  It seems as if it doesn’t take much trouble on our part to welcome spring and play our way through it .

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You remember how hard you prepared for winter?  You checked your house for possible pipe leaks/bursts and insulation/heating problems.  You “weatherized” your car.  You prepared early for the livestock, animals, and even your own little kitties and doggies.  You got the snow blower repaired, purchased a new shovel and started thinking what you would do on those extra days that may come your way as “snow days” if you couldn’t get out of the driveway.

Oh, yes, and you got those bags of kitty litter for getting out of that 45° degree angled driveway.TX ice storm Van edited

Such hard work…and yet like a whisper and a refreshing clear, deep breath, spring is here and you didn’t have to do anything.  Well, there was the clearing out of the wardrobe–the coats, hats, gloves & snowshoes.  And there was the 3 days you spent tilling up the yard so you could plant those lovely blooming plants.

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But for the most part, you get to just sit back and watch spring arrive and watch your soul and body regenerate and rekindle.

8fbd0cd5b0afe218347caaf03cd0b3f2[1]   Now a time of serenity has come to replace our weary thoughts and plans.  Come on over and let’s join in and welcome spring with as much excitement as it deserves and bid our final farewell to this long, hard record-breaking winter.

[Enjoy the video below as you think about spring. “Song of Spring” by Mendelssohn]

Oh, I surely hope you aren’t suffering from the allergens arriving daily.  I truly wish the spring storms bypass you this year.  But most of all I beg you to make the most of this arrival of renewal. 
 

Before long, we’ll be making ugly faces at that thermometer.

How long do you think it will take for you to utter the words?

Boy, I wish it would cool off soon.

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Where Imagination Takes Me

There are no rules for architecture for a castle in the clouds

G. K. Chesterton

Does Wind Whisper or Roar?

Later in this column, I’ll give you the scientific definition of WIND.  But for the moment, think about wind only as a source of energy—something we can’t see but can feel.  I consider it the most mysterious of weather conditions.  Where is it?  If it can be so powerful, why can’t we see it?flowers_blowing_in_the_wind_by_silverlioness77-d4zxkz1[1]

 

This winter of 2013/2014 has proved to be one of the most extreme weather patterns in recent years (in some cases decades).

Mostly we consider wind to be the “source” that:

  • messes up our hair
  • takes the dirt/dust in the air and collects it on our cars,
  • sends the pollens into our red, watery, itchy eyes.

It is also that thing which causes your little speeding golf ball to take an unruly path away from the hole on the green.

And you may remember the frustration of trying to fly a kite which is difficult with too little or too much wind.

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For all the things we can blame on wind, I want to consider it’s positive force—how it makes you feel.  Whether you think of wind as in the concept of power or gusts or you think of it as a whisper fluttering the leaves, it undeniably has power like no other part of nature.

To me  it is the way I feel in the wind.  I know, scientifically, there is energy and power in the wind.  But to feel the wind as it touches my face and body, to let it drift over my mind and thoughts, just to see it moving the other elements of nature is so representative of a force greater than you and I.

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It seems to have the ability to make my mind clear – like clearing out the cobwebs.  It actually affects my body & health.  It takes only a few minutes outside in quiet solitude before I feel as if I’d done spring cleaning in my  thoughts completely removing the problems and worries and enjoying the deep breaths I draw.

Regeneration is a word that reminds me of what “wind” does for me.

Let’s think about when wind mixes with a particular element–that brings on a whole new meaning.

  • If it is snow blowing and swirling, then we have a blizzard;
  • if it is sand or dirt blowing, then we have a dust storm;
  • if it is rain that is moving with the wind, it may result in tornadic or hurricane force winds.th[7]

Sometimes those things bring us upheaval and disaster.  So the ferocious manner of wind is not to be ignored.  But think with me about the breeze and gusts that most often make up our day.thBTE95TC0

  • The coolness of an autumn breeze;
  • the snow moved softly by the wind;
  • the pollen pushed forth by the blowing;
  • the rain shower that blows upon us for only minutes.

Like most of us in the US, I’m awaiting those days that will soon burst forth giving us more pollen, more rain, more movement than has laid below our frozen tundra and iced vegetation.  As the Spring of 2014 drifts upon us in a few more days (weeks), I hope I will be able to appreciate what the wind provides for us and greet it with welcoming smiles.

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Wind dusts off, cleans away, and refreshes the earth as well as our body.  The power of the wind reminds me the source of all wind (all energies) is controlled by my Creator and that God is the maker and purveyor of this earth.

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Scientific Information about wind:  For any of you who wish to read a “scientific Description” of wind, you may click this link.  It seemed to me to be very mysterious in its definition—a little like wind seems to me!  http://www.weatherquestions.com/What_causes_wind.htm

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For the wordsmiths among us, here are other words for wind:

breath  ♦  breeze  ♦  draft  ♦  ozone  ♦  puff  ♦  blast ♦ waft ♦

whirlwind cyclone  ♦  flutter ♦  cyclone ♦  flutter  ♦  tempest  ♦

typhoon  ♦ zephyr  ♦  ventilation  ♦  chinook  ♦

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Wind has so many attributes and has often been used in music & poetry.

One of the songs about “wind” is represented in the1969 Hollywood film “Paint 
Your Wagon” (They Call the Wind) Maria (pronounced /məˈr.ə/) performed by 
Harve Presnell.  Here is a video of that performance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02Mh3DNaXDw&feature=player_embedded#t=2

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The exact opposite of Maria is when “wind” brings us the soft, wistful thoughts.  “The Breeze & I are whispering goodbye…”  For those who want to dance in the breeze, I’ve included that haunting melody here

The Breeze and I - words by Al Stillman, music by Ernesto Lecuona
music written in 1929 as a piano piece called "Andaluza,"part of the Andalucia Suite
by the Cuban composer Ernesto Lecuona - words added later by Al Stillman - 
sung here by Caterina Valente, 1953

The breeze and I are saying with a sigh
That you no longer care
The breeze and I are whispering goodbye
To dreams we used to share

Ours was a love song that seemed constant as the moon
Ending in a strange, mournful tune
And all about me, they know you have departed without me
And we wonder why, the breeze and I
The breeze and I

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G35oUvfqnsk&feature=player_embedded#t=6

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Here is a little known fact related to weatherology:

As mentioned, the song  “They Call the Wind Maria” was featured in the 1969 Hollywood film “Pain Your Wagon, starring Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood and Jean Seberg.  It was George Rippey Stewart’s 1941 novel Storm, in which he presents the storm which is the protagonist of his story  and named it “Maria” (pronounced /məˈr.ə/).

In 1947, Stewart wrote a new introduction for a reprint of the book, and discussed the pronunciation of “Maria”:

“The soft Spanish pronunciation is fine for some heroines, but our Maria here is too big for any man to embrace and much too boisterous.” He went on to say, “So put the accent on the second syllable, and pronounce it ‘rye'”

The success of Stewart’s novel was one factor that motivated U.S. military meteorologists to start the informal practice of giving women’s names to storms in the Pacific during World War II. The practice became official in 1945. In 1953, a similar system of using women’s names was adopted for North Atlantic storms. This continued until 1979, when men’s names were incorporated into the system.

Think about how the wind moves through nature and through you.

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GOD'S POETIC CHILD!!!

Dear Reader, I am here to give you a little taste of poetry with some water on the side. When you come on my blog that's all that you will taste is Poetry. Not the type of poetry where it doesn't have a meaning. The type of poetry where you will be inspired, uplifted and you will have a different mindset once you leave this site. You might even come to get a taste of this poetry again. Don't be afraid to let your kids read this blog. My poetry is for and to help the youth. Bring them along with you. You both are scrolling down your phone or on the computer anyway. Let's have fun and get a taste of some poetry. I promise this type of poetry tastes delicious. Grab a plate and a fork and I'll feed you. ENJOY!!!!

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