Category Archives: Hebrew

A Special Mystery and a Christmas Prayer

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When I received the book, “The Christmas Wish,” written by Richard

M. Siddoway, I did not know how much it would mean to me, in so

many different ways.  Richard is an educator in the public school system

of Utah, along with being a member of the House of Representatives.

He and his wife, Janice, have eight children and possibly grandchildren

since the book was published.

I think where they live in Utah, sounds very much like the book:

Bountiful.

First of all, it is a lovely book, with a special Christmas annual mystery.

A grandson who loved his grandparents and who had been raised by

them. He respected his grandfather very much and after he has passed

away, he finds out Grandpa had visited a woman named “Lillian” every

Christmas Eve. It has a happy ending, one his Grandma is pleased about

and readers are blessed by.

This book holds such great meaning, including being open to what may

possibly be another way to view a situation, along with the powerful

ingredient of forgiveness.

It was written in 1995, given to me in 2003.

Jean A. was my mentor, almost a decade younger than I was. I was in

the midst of pursuing my Master’s degree, when she found out she was

pregnant. A ‘surprise!’ baby.

A mother of three teenagers, Jean was a little distracted. But she was still

the very best preschool teacher of integrated developing levels of children.

A fine example for me to attempt to follow her beautiful and lasting

footsteps. Her husband and family were such a fine example of love and

Jean shone with a year-round Christmas spirit.

Little did I know, she would pass away when her little Spencer was only

three years old, doctor having found cancer growing rapidly due to the

increase of hormones from pregnancy. This book is a treasure and one

that is brought out every Christmas. I read it again, since it has a lot of

history in it, along with all the elements of a good story. I also hang up

a framed snow painting that has the words,

“Star light, star bright,

I wish I may,

I wish I might,

Have this Wish

I wish tonight.

Peace on Earth.”

 

Inside the book there is a precious poem:

“The house is warm, good cheer abounds.

The heart of Christmas is all around.

The children sing, their voices sweet,

The candles are lit, such rosy heat.

My heart is full, my eyes aglow,

For those here with me

and those I cannot know.”

~* Anonymous *~

(A preface also says,

“To Janice.”)

 

“I said a Christmas prayer for you

because the seasons near.

I didn’t ask for riches

but for gifts so much more dear.

I asked for joyful gatherings

with your family all around,

and for carols to inspire  you

with their old familiar sound,

I asked for quiet moments

in your heart on Christmas morn,

for a special time to celebrate

the Savior who was born.

I asked for friends to send their best

that you might know they care. . .

I asked for peace and love and hope;

and I know God heard my prayer.”

Written by

Nancy Parker Brummett

 

Happy “Festivus for the Rest of Us!”

Happy Hanukkah!

Blessed Christmas wishes,

Joy in Kwanzaa Celebrations,

or Hope you find Peace:

May it be True.

Sunshine on Your Shoulders

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Sunday messages for today come in little rays of light found in some uplifting

quotes. Starting out with this lighthearted quote from the Bible:

“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.”

(Proverbs 17:22)

 

“Is any man merry? Let him sing psalms.”

(James 5:13)

 

This is from the book of Hebrews, reworded as:

“Hope is a strong and trustworthy

anchor for our souls.”

 

Hope keeps many moving along their much beaten paths. It gives us promises

of better times, when it is a tough time in our lives. There’s so much goodness

to be said about the word and feelings of “Hope!” ~reocochran

 

“Prayer is not a spare wheel that you pull out when in trouble;

it is a steering wheel that directs us in the right path throughout life.”

(Anonymous)

 

Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow.”

(Helen Keller)

 

To ponder on. . .

“There are two freedoms- – the false, where a man is free to do what he likes;

– – the true, where he is free to do what he ought.”

(Charles Kingsley)

 

Musical suggestions:

“Morning is Broken” sung by someone who used to be called, Cat Stevens.

When he got inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, his name was

recognized as Yusuf Islam. He was very humble in his speech, a lovely man.

 

“Sunshine on My Shoulders” sung by John Denver. I love “Annie’s Song,”

that starts with, “You fill up my senses…” My grandkids love, “Grandma’s

Feather Bed” song! He was a poet and nature lover, so sad his ‘Long-EZ’

plane went down in the mountains he so loved. Can you believe it will be

17 years from that October 12, 1997 accident? Seems like just yesterday…

 

Have a serene, tranquil and pleasurable Sunday, everyone!

 

 

National Days of Remembrance

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For the week starting April 27, 2014 until May 4, 2014, the United

States has set aside time to remember the people who were killed,

survived and helped rescue the Jewish and other ethnic groups that

were affected during WWII time period.

We have designated this week as National Days of Remembrance of

those who were ‘martyrs’ and ‘heroes’ of the Holocaust.

On this evening of Sunday, April 27th, in respect to the 27th day

of Nisan on the Hebrew calendar, until the evening of Monday, Israelis

mark those moments in time, through prayers and thoughts of those in

the Holocaust. The term, “Yom HaShoah” is given for this period of

reflection. This was the time where protesting people were engaging in,

what is called, “The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.” If anyone is affiliated

with this, through family members and are more informed on this practice,

please feel free to add to the post, in the Comments’ Section. Thank you!

On January 27, 1945, troops entered a concentration camp in Germany,

where they found 11,700 prisoners. This camp with its gas chambers

and other horrors was called Auschwitz-Birkenau. Other camps, where

many people were tortured and killed, later surfaced and became known,

once the war in Europe ended.

In May, there will be a celebration of Victory in Europe, for WWII’s

ending. I have already made sure to include this day on my May Monthly

Calendar post. I cannot believe how time has flown and another month

has passed already!

My Grandmother Paula Haller Mattson came from Germany, immigrating

while a teenager. She denounced the behavior of Nazis and many times

denied her heritage, during the thirties and forties, since there was

more common knowledge here in the United States, even than in Germany,

at the time. She practiced English and did not sound “German” during

her adult life. She was a waitress at the Waldorf Astoria, where she

liked to say, “I waited on Kings and Queens, the Rothchild’s,

Vanderbilt’s and Presidents.” I believe she wanted to be part of our

country, assimilating more than her cousins, Elaine and Clara.

When I got married, my second and third cousins, came to my first

wedding. I noticed a distinctive difference in their accent, although

my Grandma had already passed away by then. Family was always important,

but becoming an American citizen, was equally special to my Grandma M.

The movie, “The Sound of Music,” told through the Von Trapp Family

Singers’ escape from Germany over the Alps’ story. This popular movie

depicted the foreboding atmosphere of the upcoming takeover and war.

More serious films, like “Schindler’s List,” which told about the

sympathy of other cultures towards the Jewish people are interesting

and deeply realistic.

Of course, reading history books, visiting the great Holocaust Museum in

Washington, D. C. and seeing documentaries will give you more accurate

pictures of the drastic takeover by Adolf Hitler of the German peoples

and troops.

When my brothers would watch Saturday morning movies, such as ones that

had John Wayne and others in them, my parents tried to discourage any

glorification of war, in their young minds. My Grandmother M. would get

angry when my brothers would play Americans against the Germans,

Cowboys versus the Indians and (from their cartoon views of “Rocky and

Bullwinkle”), somehow my brothers came up with the idea of American Spies

against the Russian Spies espionage ‘game.’ All of these were forbidden around

my grandparents’ house, along being within earshot of my parents’ house.

Being an English, World Literature and Spanish teacher, my Mom was pretty

strict in her use of language. One word we were not allowed to use often,

and it had to be very important to do so, was the word, “Hate.” She was

taught this by her mother, that most things in Life, can be expressed as

“not pleasant,” “dislike strongly,” or “prefer not to.” It is a great way

to raise children to be more open minded, whether it to be trying a new food,

learning about a different culture than one’s own or meeting unfamiliar

people. It is another way to show ‘remembrance’ and ‘respect’ to all

things, peoples and thoughts.

I like the way in “South Pacific,” the character played by John Kerr

sings, “You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught.” This song is in reference

to prejudice is a learned experience, taught by the ones closest to the

children or young adults. Only after researching this song, did I find it was

considered very “controversial” and “downright inappropriate” for musical

stage productions.

Interestingly enough, it was also labeled, promoting “Communistic agenda!”

I am proud that the authors of the lyrics, Rodgers and Hammerstein, the

producers, directors and actors all said that they were ‘in it’ due to

the way it expresses these emotional viewpoints. I listened to this, along

with a lot of major musicals, in person, at theatres and on the stereo, where

my parents placed a stack of records to listen to, during relaxing, ‘television

restricted’ periods of weekends or ends of workdays.

Of course, I am going to be honest about this, teens learn ‘prejudices’

from their peers, even when you (as parents) have done your ‘darndest’ to

prevent them from this.

There have been people who are ‘brainwashed’ even as adults. Don’t think

my kids are, or ever were, “perfect!” Or that I didn’t have to ‘straighten

them out’ a few times!

Even professionals, pastors and teachers hold views that are bigoted and

close-minded. I had a family member who felt the Bible “said” the “Tribe

of Abraham,” meaning people with African heritage, were meant to be slaves.

I was appalled, argued when I was once involved in a holiday discussion,

home from college on Winter Break. My parents and brothers stood on my

side, basically telling the person to table the debate.

When the Viet Nam War or skirmishes began, my brothers were close

to Draft Age. My parents seriously (sorry, if this is going to bother

you), thought about relocating to Canada! Enrolling my brothers in

college, during this time may or may not have prevented draft, but

draft ended before they needed to be concerned with it, personally.

A song which includes, “How can people be so heartless? How can people

be so cruel?” was one of my favorite songs, sung by Three Dog Night.

It is called, “Easy to be Hard,” (1969).

We still have ‘enemies.’

We still have ‘hate.’

I hope you will take some moments in this next week, to reflect and

remember the Holocaust and other people who are continuing to be

scapegoats and persecuted in the world, sometimes with the governmental

support of a country.

Adding to this post, on Monday April 28, 2014.

Will you please keep those who endured the twisters in the states of

Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas, those who lost family members, and those

who are hospitalized in your remembrances and thoughts this week?

So far there have been 17 deaths in these three states. There was a

little four year old girl, who was swooped up, carried a distance

and had her legs crushed… I hope you will be including her in your

thoughts and prayers, too.

Another twister came through on Monday night into April 29th, 2014.

The states of Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee had houses and

properties destroyed, along with unfortunately, 11 deaths.

All of these areas have had people volunteering to assist the people

who have had to leave their homes, along with sifting through the rubble,

looking for people.

Thanks for reading some more about this tragic weather situation!

March into Spring

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This is the fastest, it seems, that time has passed to

get to my next monthly post! I found out that this month

is considered National Kidneys Month. If you are over 50,

they suggest to get from now on, an annual urine screening.

A Poem for those worms that will soon be lying around on

sidewalks and parking lots, due to March’s heavy rain:

“Hurt No Living Thing”

by Christina G. Rosetti

“Hurt no living thing.

Ladybird nor butterfly,

Nor moth with dusty wing,

Nor cricket chirping cheerily,

Nor grasshopper so light of leap.

Nor dancing gnat, nor beetle fat,

Nor harmless worms that creep.”

In that second line, I have always wondered, did

Christina mean a ladybug or a bird that was female?

Certainly, she would be proud of St. Patrick, who

led the snakes out of Ireland, in legendary form,

by playing his pipe.

MARCH

1- New Moon.

Just a sliver…

I am afraid I may have misled you, no one pointed this

next error out in my February post…

2- Texas Independence Day

and… the 86th Academy Awards Show, with Ellen G. as host.

4- Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras time, celebrate since some

will be fasting soon for Lenten Season.

5- Ash Wednesday.

I have, from childhood on, liked the simple act of

receiving ashes on my forehead. Having been raised an

Episcopalian, we still followed the Roman Catholic Lent

period. We ‘gave up meat on Fridays’ and decide which

certain food, chocolate, pizza, fries, donuts or ice

cream… to give up. This was usually whichever was the

biggest ‘sacrifice’ for the days leading up to Easter.

9- Daylight Savings Time begins by setting our clocks

ahead, thus losing one hour of sleep, at midnight.

Also, on this date, fifty years ago, the first Mustang

car rolled off the assembly lines in Dearborn, Michigan.

The Ford Motor Company the debuted Mustang car at the

World’s Fair, 1964. It was forecasted to be only 100,000

needed but in a mere 18 months, they had sold and reached

the 1,000,000 mark! I have to admit, my Mom became a

rather ‘cool’ person in our eyes and her high school

students’ eyes, too. She purchased one of these Mustangs

in what we called “pea green color.” All 3 of us learned

how to drive that car in the mid-seventies, making us

rather ‘groovy!’

15- Andrew Jackson Day, Tennessee.

16- Watch out for Full Worm Moon!

Also, the Jewish faith celebrate Purim after

sundown.

17- St. Patrick’s Day.

Don’t forget to wear Green so you won’t get pinched!

Celebrate by eating corned beef and cabbage, have a hot

coffee laced with Irish Crème, or have a frosty mug of

green ‘brew!’ If you are on the ‘rich side of life,’

purchase some Jameson’s Irish Whiskey!

20- Although we have been hoping this could come

earlier, after our long, extended weather, this

is the First Day of Spring!

When I saw recently a photograph of a windmill and

tulips, it made me think how Holland is represented

in their Springtime with this image. I happen to

also enjoy the cherry blossoms that are photographed

in Washington D.C. Hope all the countries are able

to enjoy a wonderful season, whatever it is in your

area of the world!

I also think about poor elderly Don Quixote, confused

and tilting at windmills… All for the sake of his

deep, abiding love of Dulcinea! I have always liked

that music from “Man of La Mancha.” Miguel de Cervantes

is an author I should have included in my ABC list!

The lesson I learn from Don Q. is that no matter how

old we get, we need to remember, there is no age limits

set for discoveries, learning and facing challenges.

Two more quotations to add to our month of March.

Taken from the book, “Lightposts for Living, The Art of

Choosing a Joyful Life” (2001), by Thomas Kinkade:

“Blocking off space for the important concerns of your

life, will do wonders for your sense of peace and harmony.”

This could have easily joined the suggested renewal of

Spring (and Green post) quotes.

Dorothy L. Sayers,

“We have come to that still centre

Where the spinning world

Sleeps on its axis,

To the heart of rest.”

Final thoughts and interpretations of the messages

shared this month:

“Be calm.

Find your focus.

Follow your heart.

Make time to be refreshed.

In the ‘River of Life,’ which may become high and

full of water,

With our melted snow and continued Spring rain,

Get rested up for soon…

Life will be rushing along into

its most active time of year!”

reocochran 3/1/14