Friday, July 29, 2016

Ramblings as I wait...

The best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person.~ Andy Rooney

Summer is stalled for us as I wait for a word from my daughter that she is going into labor with our second grandchild.  I was remembering the time when I was her age and waiting for her to be born.  One thing you may not know about me is that I was a barber/cosmetologist for a large 150 resident senior facility for seven years. When I walked into the office the lady did not think I would last.  I was young I did not know what I was stepping into. Little did I know is that I would find little treasures in the mist of their suffering and a joy of purpose in being there as a part of their stories.  
Two stories come to mind.  One my favorite, and one most meaningful.
One of my regular clients was named Harold.  He was wheelchair bound and hardly had any hair so needless to say he was easy to work on.  He had a lovely wife that spent many hours there with him every day.  All of us that worked there got to know her and "quiet Harold" as the most sweetest couple.  Harold never complained, always quiet and agreeable until one day. I not sure if it was the full moon or he was planning this for months, but Harold made a break for it.  There he was joy riding in his wheel chair at full speed down a busy street. I don't know what got into him but he was smiling ear to ear and going fast!  When the aids finally caught him he gave me the funniest smirk I had ever seen.  He had my respect! Nobody knew he had it in him. :)
The most meaningful one came on a normal day. This room needs a haircut this morning quickly Stephanie. So I gathered up my equipment and walked to the room and there I saw a man laying on the bed in what I was told were his last moments of his life.  "Just trim up his hair, for there is no barber in the morgue",said a lady to me.  I was absolutely stunned at this request. Mind you I was young and put on a brave face as I looked at him and knew in my spirit he understood everything that was happening around him.  When the lady left I spoke with him and let him know that I knew he can hear me and tried my best to encourage him.  I prayed quietly to myself..."Lord give me boldness to say what I need to say to this man"!

Just then a child in the next room speaks loudly...
  Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, Ephesians 6:19
I looked over and there was a child and a mother that was visiting another senior in the next room.  The child then started singing... 
Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so. Little ones to him belong, they are weak but he is strong.
Her lovely singing echoed though that whole wing of that facility.  When I looked down at my client he had tears in his eyes. I asked him if he wanted me to pray with him and he nodded, so I prayed with him for peace and to receive Jesus.  After I prayed with him his daughter came into the room.  She thanked me for cutting his hair and also told me  there was no barber at the morgue.  I told her that he is still here and can hear everything you say.  Just talk to him. She quietly sat down with him to talk to him as I left.
Three weeks later the daughter came to me and thanked me because she had wonderful conversations with him.  He lived three weeks more, rather than the hours the doctors originally gave him, in the company of his loved ones.

 The old and young have something to offer.  We all just need to be open to their stories.

 Devotional Talks for People who Do God’s Business
 They will still bear fruit in old age,
    they will stay fresh and green,

Psalm 92:14 

Even to your old age and gray hairs
    I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
    I will sustain you and I will rescue you.

Isaiah 46:4

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Letter account: Pearl Harbor

This is my grandmother Ann,  she was right there during the Pearl Harbor attack.  I found the photos below  with some old Hawaii photos that she took.  I don't know who took the photos, but they were from the same camera as some of her old Hawaii pictures. … …

These are her original words accounted and I have not changed the grammar at all. "which is a probably a good thing" :) I just copied it how it was written by her. A letter to my brother.

Dear Jimmy,
   You asked me what I remember most about Pearl Harbor.  It was truly a day of horror for me, one that followed a beautiful day of nice and pretty things. The football team from Willamette University in the state of Washington had come over for the biggest game of the season, at haft-time hundreds of balloons were released to float up into the beautiful blue sky.  That evening, eight of us went to the Royal Hawaiian Hotel for dinner and dancing.  It was full to the limit, in fact, there were lots of people everywhere.  It was the biggest shore leave in history (for Hawaii) because of the more than average number of ships anchored in our harbor (Pearl) . I had moved into our quarters on Hickam Field, the big Air Force Base there, on December first to get it all fixed up before my fiance and I were married on January tenth.

After we finished our dinner and dancing, we right, all from Hickam Field, took two cars for a trip around the island (Oahu) to stop at various beautiful spots to admire the lovely sea and Hawaiian night.  At dawn, we arrived at the Haleiwa Hotel for breakfast and to watch the San Pans (little Japanese fishing boats) go out to sea and to watch the airplanes of the daily "dawn patrol" fly over.

The first strange thing that we noticed was that every single one of the San pans went out to sea instead of part of them which was the usual case.  Then, we finished breakfasting  on the hotel veranda (porch) and realized that no "dawn Patrol" had flown over.  ( The Army and Navy had always flown it on alternate days and spokesmen for each said later that each one thought the other was to do it that day.)

We continued on around the island and stopped at the Waikiki Tavern for coffee before going on to Hickam Field.  We had just been served our coffee when we heard anti-aircraft fire.  Practice, we thought, but on Sunday?  Most unusual.

Too, there were planes flying lower than usual.  The men in our group were all pilots, so one of them went outside to see what he could and quickly came back in saying, "the smoke is black instead of white," it is real ammunition going up! We all went out to look just in time to see a little fighter plane fly overhead. Each wing had the round red spot (Japan's emblem to symbolize their "Land of the Rising Sun") painted on it.

It was all real,we now knew.  Went back inside because the waiter had turned his radio on very loud, as the voice on it had instructed everyone to do. Other instructions were given: all military personnel return to their bases. all others stay indoors and away from glass,  turn your radio up to awaken your neighbors so they could be on the alert.

It had all started around 7:30 am when the pilots (every one of them committed to suicide after dropping their bombs) left their aircraft carrier headed for Oahu.  They dropped their first bomb at 7:55 a.m.  By the time we arrived at Hickam they had bombed a U-shaped mess hall killing 700 men at once, and the planes that were on the field and those hangers that had planes in them and many buildings around the base, including mine so I only had what I was wearing left.

The pilots were flying low,dropping little wing bombs and strafing everyone they could with their machine guns.  They killed my fiance.  All Pearl Harbor it was much the same, bombing ships and setting them on fire (or sinking them) and bombing buildings and shooting people.  They turned the ship Arizona over,trapping 200men inside, their remains are still there.  It was all over in less than an hour (the attack,that is) and the pilots having completed their mission put their planes into nose dives and killed themselves.

I later married your Grandfather and believe it or not, when your father was born, his handmade baby clothes and the quilt for crib were made of silk from a parachute that was retrieved from the sea on Pearl Harbor Day.

And guess what!  If it hadn't been for Pearl Harbor, you wouldn't be here, because I would have married someone else.

Love Grandmother


 … …


It pleases God when we use our gifts and talents to glorify God. Creative work exchanges a lack of words for a sweet fellowship of worship.

  This piece is a hand embroidery I did with a ship, palm trees, different types of flowers and leaves tied together with a knot.


  I have been in a tropical mood lately which shows in a lot of my work right now, and during the time I was sketching this piece there was many troubling events happening in America and the world.  It saddens me how divided we are as a country and as a nation, how we are unable to come together and embrace our differences with compassion, love and respect.  
"The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them."~Ralph Nichols
All the mixed patterns, textures and colors makes life rich, fun and interesting.  How boring would it be if they were all the same!


Toby with a tennis ball

Friday, July 15, 2016


My husband planted sunflowers! Here are a few pictures of them.

He did all the work and I just took the pictures!