Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Supreme Humor

Some moment from the Hearing. Our nominee has a great sense of humor. Where did they get the guys asking the questions?

Manure Spreader Landscape! Photo by Bob Kelly

It is not every day that a manure spreader is a central part of the subject area of my photos, but it was on this day! This particular manure spreader has been retired from its pungent duties, and is now a flower bed! The spreader has a long tongue extending from its front so that horses could be hitched up to pull it. The farmer cutout with a bandanna tired around his neck is a nice touch as well. Actually the thunderheads were calling to me, but I wanted to put something in front of them for the best effect and I saw this and we are! This scene is not out in the country, but for those of you familiar with Ames, it is just north of the Target store in a open area. I sat on the ground for a lower angle that also allowed me to hide some distracting buildings on the horizon. Those are soybeans growing a field adjacent to the Target store. They grow them on a flood plain area which is great for farming, until it floods, which it may very well do sometime in July. The flowers on the manure spreader look lovely, and come to think of it...maybe they grow very well there for a reason!! Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tuesday Diary

I went to Des Moines to have dinner with Kurt and the Kids at Ruby Tuesday. Lyssa was working. I had the ribs and to my way of thinking they are the best. It was nice to be with them.

It was rather bright where I took the picture..

Then I went down to the Varsity Theater near Drake University to see the film Harry Brown starring Michael Caine. Michael Caine is a world treasure. He is a consummate actor. ( I have no idea what that means I have just heard it used and want to impress you with my vocabulary). Plot summary below

An elderly ex-serviceman and widower looks to avenge his best friend's murder by doling out his own form of justice.

He really does play the part to perfection - and by the way that is what consummate means. I googled the definition:

Carried to the utmost extent or degree; of the highest quality; complete; perfect.

To bring to completion; to raise to the highest point or degree; to complete; to finish; to perfect; to achieve

The movie was violent and dark but worth it. I enjoyed Caine's performance.

On the way to the movie I went to the gas station and a young lady came up to me and asked me for a ride. I told her that I was just going to the Drake neighborhood and she could ride that far. Then she told me she was looking for a "date" She went back to her pimp. I had just been propositioned. I was amazed - Sometime I should tell you the story about when my friend and I were travelling in Mexico and wound up in a house of ill repute. Two boys from Iowa in Mexico City surrounded by 20 very pretty "ladies of the evening." We were smart enough to get out of there with everything intact. I am pretty naïve most of the time.

Miles got to go for a walk today and he is pretty tuckered out. So am I. They got me up at 5:00 AM and I did not get a nap. Thanks for stopping by. Nite Nite - Hugs. j

Quote for today

Remember, the universe is the echo of our actions and our thoughts."
Dalai Lama

From 09 May 2010 - Religions, Spirituality & the Dalai Lama's Wisdom

Monday, June 28, 2010

From Freemasonry For Dummies Blog

To be one ask one.
If this interests you find a Mason and ask about it.

Miles on Monday

Remember that I mentioned that Miles liked to hang out in the Prairie that Jon planted.
Can you see him?

There he is. Arising from the depths!

Awesome. I think he is looking at the cardinal that I can hear but not see.

I love these pictures.

Peek a boo
I see you - there with the camera!

At least he is not digging.

He is so very special.

Bailey likes the shorter grass.

Such a cutie.

Robert C. Byrd - 1917- 2010

Senator Byrd was one of my heroes. Read obituaries here and here.
Addendum from Freemasons for Dummies

Byrd was a member of Mountain Lodge No. 156 in Coal City, West Virginia, as well as the West Virginia Valley of the Scottish Rite (SJ), and the Beni Kedem Shrine in Charleston.

On March 19, 2003, Mr. Byrd delivered the first of what became regular attacks on the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq. "Today I weep for my country," he said in a speech on the Senate floor. "I have watched the events of recent months with a heavy, heavy heart. No more is the image of America one of strong yet benevolent peacekeeper. The image of America has changed.

"Some senators, in the course of their careers, make their reputations as authorities on the armed service, on taxation, on foreign relations, on housing, on science and technology, on medical care," journalist and author Milton Viorst wrote in 1967 in Washingtonian magazine. "Sen. Robert C. Byrd has made his reputation as an authority on the mating habits of Washington's underprivileged."

Mr. Byrd drastically cut the welfare rolls, even as he supported a higher federal contribution to the city and championed public schools, playgrounds, swimming pools and libraries.

R.I.P. Senator, you will be missed.

You are great!

Thank you John Shuck. You are awesome. I watched the whole thing.....

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Jon in Spain - ROME

Rome was awesome. Either you or Rick would have been good company. Although to be honest the hills and all the walking would have killed you. It damn near did me in. My feet hurt worse than after hiking in the mountains.

I'm looking forward to telling you about Roma. I took just over a 1000 photos. Not only did I see the Vatican, the Colosseum, Fountain di Trevi, the Pantheon, a number of churches, a number of plazas and fountains.

I discovered overlooking the Spanish Stairs the house where John Keats died. John KEATS! Its now a Museum dedicated to him and Percy Shelly (both of whom are buried in Rome along with Severn and other artists of the day). Next to the museum is a shop called Byrons. Hilarious. References to 3 of the 6 great romantic era poets all in one block and overlooking this fantastic thing called the Plaza di Espangn. I had forgotten that it was in Rome where Keats spent his dying days. It was for me what going to the Vatican was for the Catholic girls I went to Rome with.

I've started thinking of gifts to bring back with me. I've decided for you I'm either going to give you one of the small bottles of Limonechello I got in Rome or I'll share with you a bottle of Agua de Valencia (Orange Juice, Vodka, Gin and Champaign as far as i've been able to gather). Maybe sangria if i find a bottle. Alcohol either way.

Being in Rome made me think of
your bedroom and your trip to Egypt. I even have a similar story now to one of the ones you told me.

Happy Sunday

Kathy sent me this. Boogie through life.... -Go visit.

My favorite

Happiness comes through doors you didn't even know you'd left open.

Have a wonderful day!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Blackbird Guards Old Corner Post - Photo by Bob Kelly

A Red Winged Blackbird stands guard atop a strong, old corner fence post, still in place from its earlier years as a major support for an important fence. The variety of barbed and number nine wires and the rusty brace all are a testament to its earlier days. The wooden board has staples that have remained long after the "No Hunting" signs were removed or fell off. This fence post, rich with character, is also a sentinel of time, amidst the fertile lands.

click to embiggen

Knight and Day - Sky Shots

Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz make the movie Knight and Day a fun romp through the world of a spy gone rogue....maybe.

You never really know in this black ops romantic comedy which redeems Cruise in my eyes. I thought he had gone off the wall. It is hard to believe that he is 48 years old. He looks good and I think he had a lot of fun with this film. I enjoyed it as did the lady who was sitting about half a row to the left of me. She had a loud infectious laugh and was exhibiting it all the way through the film. There was not a large audience for this first show of the afternoon and it had been playing since Wednesday.

One thing I enjoyed was the tie in at the end with the gags in the first part of the show. It tied everything together. I won't spoil the show for you. The trailer has quite a bit of the fun things but even it doesn't tell the whole story. Grab your best friend and take them to the action comedy of the year so far. You won't be sorry.

And now some sky shots that I took with my phone camera on the way home. Last night we had thunder and lightning all night long and it looks as if we might be in for more storms tonight as the thunder heads are building up. When I was a kid my mother/grandparent (I can't remember which) told me that the thunder was a potato wagon rolling across the wooden bridge. I still think of that when I hear a good thunder today. Thanks for stopping by, Hugs, j

Friday, June 25, 2010

Specialis Procer Lodge - Festival of St. John

Tonight was the first time our Lodge has held a Festival of St. John the Baptist. This is a customary Feast for Masonic Lodges which, unfortunately, has grown out of favor. We decided that we would revive the event and as is our custom we would have a talk.

We asked Brother Tim Whipple to be our speaker and he gave a very interesting talk on the Emancipation Proclamation as seen through the Masonic Value of Fortitude. He was inspired to write the speech by a penny he received in change which got him to thinking. Tonight he had us all thinking.

There was a wonderful group of Masons and their ladies who gathered for a social hour at 6:00 PM and then had a lovely catered meal and under the masterful direction of MW Don Mosier our Master of Ceremonies had three toasts (a custom at Festive Boards) and then the speech. We had Masons from many lodges who were in attendance.

The Lodge has published a book of the papers presented at the meetings - Scire facias. There are two ways to get the book. One a paperback edition (black and white) and another in color and hardback. The limited edition hardback edition sells for $25 and the proceeds go to the Des Moines Scottish Rite Library. The paperback may be obtained from lulu. If you want a hard back send me your information at and I will give you the information on where to send your check.

Good to Remember

Every once in awhile I need to review this. I think now is one of those times. Happy week-end everyone.


by Mary Baker Eddy

There is immense wisdom in the old proverb, "He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty." Hannah More said, "If I wished to punish my enemy, I should make him hate somebody."

To punish ourselves for others' faults, is superlative folly. The mental arrow shot from another's bow is practically harmless, unless our own thought barbs it.

It is our pride that makes another's criticism rankle, our self-will that makes another's deed offensive, our egotism that feels hurt by another's self-assertion. Well may we feel wounded by our own faults; but we can hardly afford to be miserable for the faults of others.

A courtier told Constantine that a mob had broken the head of his statue with stones. The emperor lifted his hands to his head, saying: "It is very surprising, but I don't feel hurt in the least."

We should remember that the world is wide; that there are a thousand million different human wills, opinions, ambitions, tastes, and loves; that each person has a different history, constitution, culture, character, from all the rest; that human life is the work, the play, the ceaseless action and reaction upon each other of these different atoms. Then, we should go forth into life with the smallest expectations, but with the largest patience; with a keen relish for and appreciation of everything beautiful, great, and good, but with a temper so genial that the friction of the world shall not wear upon our sensibilities; with an equanimity so settled that no passing breath nor accidental disturbance shall agitate or ruffle it; with a charity broad enough to cover the whole world's evil, and sweet enough to neutralize what is bitter in it, - determined not to be offended when no wrong is meant, nor even when it is, unless the offense be against God.

Nothing short of our own errors should offend us. He who can wilfully attempt to injure another, is an object of pity rather than of resentment; while it is a question in my mind, whether there is enough of a flatterer, a fool, or a liar, to offend a whole-souled woman.

Not the easiest thing in the world for me to do but I will increase my endeavours for the future. j

Found For Friday

A priest said, "Anyone with 'special needs' who wants to be prayed over, please come forward to the altar rail."

With that, Albert got in line, and when it was his turn, the priest asked, "Albert, what do you want me to pray about for you?"

Albert replied, "Father, I need you to pray for help with my hearing."

The priest put one finger of one hand in Albert's ear, placed his other hand on top of Albert's head, and then prayed and prayed and prayed. He prayed a "blue streak" for Albert, and the whole congregation joined in with great enthusiasm.

After a few minutes, the priest removed his hands, stood back and asked, "Albert, how is your hearing now?"

Albert answered, "I don't know. It ain't 'til next week.".
Why is it called 'tourist season' if we can't shoot at them?

Why is there an expiration date on 'sour cream'?

Can an atheist get insurance against acts of God?

If you try to fail...
...and succeed...
...which have you done?

Whose cruel idea was it for the word 'lisp' to have 'S' in it?

Why are hemorrhoids called 'hemorrhoids' instead of 'assteroids'?

Murphy's Lesser Known Laws - Part Two...

What do you do when you see an endangered animal eating an endangered plant?

If a parsley farmer is sued...
...can they 'garnish' his wages?

Would a fly without wings be called a 'walk'?

Why do they lock gas station bathrooms?
Are they afraid someone will clean them?

If a turtle doesn't have a shell... he homeless or naked?

Can vegetarians eat animal crackers?

If the police arrest a mime... they tell him he has the right to remain silent?

Why do they put Braille on the drive-through bank machines?

How do they get deer to cross the road only at those yellow road signs?

What was the best thing before sliced bread?

One nice thing about egotists...
...they don't talk about other people.

Does the Little Mermaid wear an 'algebra'?

Do infants enjoy infancy... much as adults enjoy adultery?

How is it possible to have a civil war?

If one synchronized swimmer drowns... the rest drown, too?

If you ate both pasta and antipasto...
...would you still be hungry?
A Cubicle Conundrum: The Downside of Working in a Cube

* Being told to "Think Outside the Box" when I'm in the darn box all day!

* Not being able to check E-mail attachments without first seeing who is behind me.

* Fabric cubicle walls do not offer much protection from any kind of gun fire.

* That nagging feeling that if I just press the right button, I will get a piece of cheese.
* Lack of roof rafters for the noose.

* My walls are too close together for my hammock to work right.

* 23 power cords, 1 outlet.

* Prison cells are not only bigger, they have beds.

* When tours come through, I get lots of peanuts thrown at me.
* Can't slam the door when you quit and walk out.

* If you talk to yourself it causes all the surrounding cubicle inhabitants to pop their heads over the wall and say "What? I didn't hear you."

* If your boss calls you and asks you to come into his office for a minute the walk there is like a funeral march... people hand you tissues as you pass and refuse to make eye contact.

* You always have the feeling that someone is watching you, but by the time you turn to look they're gone.

Subject: Flower Show

Two little old ladies were sitting on a park bench outside the local town hall where a flower show was in progress.

The thin one leaned over and said, 'Life is so boring. We never have any fun any more. For $10 I'd take my clothes off and streak through that stupid flower show!'

'You're on!' said the other old lady, holding up a $10 bill.

The first little old lady slowly fumbled her way out of her clothes and, completely naked, streaked (as fast as an old lady can) through the front door
of the flower show.

Waiting outside, her friend soon heard a huge commotion inside the hall, followed by loud applause and shrill whistling.

Finally, the smiling and naked old lady came through the exit door surrounded by a cheering crowd.

'What happened?' asked her waiting friend.

'I won 1st prize as 'Best Dried Arrangement' .

1. I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

2. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.

3. I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.

4. There is great need for a sarcasm font.

5. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

6. Was learning cursive really necessary?

7. Map Quest really needs to start their directions on #5. I'm pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

8. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.

9. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.

10. Bad decisions make good stories.

11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.

12. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don't want to have to restart my collection...again.

13. I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

14. "Do not machine wash or tumble dry" means I will never wash this - ever.

15. I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Damn it!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voice mail. What did you do after I didn't answer? Drop the phone and run away?

16. I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

17. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

18. I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

19. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lite than Kay.

21. Sometimes, I'll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the heck was going on when I first saw it.

22. I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

23. The only time I look forward to a red light is when I'm trying to finish a text.

24. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

Have a Great Week-end! Hugs

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sky shot/ New at Lodge/Rant

This was the Iowa Sky over Boone yesterday. I forgot to pull it off the camera. I took it after the Home Board Meeting.

We have something new at the Lodge. Here is the dedicatory plaque. Those of us who have our names on it were not expecting it and are very honored that they did this. You can click on it to enbiggen it to read it better. (If you are interested.
It will be under the glass top (still to be delivered) for this beautiful Amana hand-made table which the York Rite purchased for the Lodge. It has 10 chairs and was delivered today.
The book ends on the middle of the table are made to look like the top of the Leaning Tower.
It is a beautiful addition to our Temple and the York Rite is owed a great big thanks for donating it. Once again this shows how much the appendant bodies that meet in our Temple contribute to our building.
And we have a new Master Mason. This Brother received an excellent degree tonight. Peace and harmony prevailed throughout the meeting and everyone did a wonderful job. I enjoyed being a sideliner.
Steven had BBQ sandwiches for the lunch after. I did not eat as I was still full from the sandwich I had and I don't need the extra weight but I enjoyed the conversation.

Yesterday on the way to Boone I caught a whiff of Pepe le Pugh. Skunk smell along the side of the road brought back memories. I don't mind it when it is a light smell - heavy is different. I kind of liked it.

Some other skunk smells are not so great. That is the skunk smell of individuals who go behind your back and stab you in it. I can understand people who get their feelings hurt and who leave a place or a group of people who they don't get along with for one reason or another.

I used to belong to another Lodge and was made to feel very uncomfortable there. An individual who was one of the ones who drove me away e-mailed me the other day and wanted to know where I was and why I had not been down. Now I haven't been there for a year and a half. A friend of mine is the Master and I like him but the other individual is not my friend. He disrespected me and then apologized to me and I did accept the apology. It does not mean that I like the person nor will I forget. So when I got his e-mail asking me to come back down. I responded that I did not feel comfortable there. And I don't. I was hurt there and I won't go back. It is too bad but I can see most of the people I knew there elsewhere. There is one Brother in particular that I don't see elsewhere and I do miss him but he sends me great e-mail and I guess that is my loss.

But I won't put myself in the position to be hurt again. I just won't. Masonry is a large enough organization that you do not have to be in a Lodge where you do not feel comfortable.

If you want to do something different you can start another Lodge. We started another Lodge in Des Moines and I enjoy it very much (most of the time). A group of Arcadia Brothers are thinking of starting a new Lodge here in Ames. I am not sure exactly why but I have a feeling that the motives are not the same as ours were. I wish them well. I think they may be doing it for the wrong reasons and that bothers me but I am not going to loose sleep over it. The Brothers who stay in Arcadia will continue and they will enjoy the good fellowship that is to be had there. Those who leave will enjoy their association together and I hope they enjoy each others company. However if their purpose is to hurt Arcadia, rest assured that won't happen. Arcadia is a strong Lodge and will continue to be strong.

Our Worshipful Master is one of the best Masons I know and I have watched him do really nice things over the years I have known him. I remember he used to bring a Brother from Story City down to meetings. The Brother was in a nursing home and Dave would pick him up and bring him to Lodge and then take him home. I have a great respect for him not only as a Mason but also as a good person. I am happy with him and I enjoy being a member of Arcadia. I was Master 30 years ago. I liked it then and I like it now.

Other things are bothering me but what else is new. Enough.

Enough babbling. The jokes will be up tomorrow morning.

How Republicans Would Govern

A Reminder

Addendum - This just in
From AmericaBlog

by Joe Sudbay (DC)

Hundreds of thousands of unemployed Americans will lose their benefits because of the GOP Senate. The Senate Republicans held together to block cloture on the jobs bill.

The vote was 57 - 41. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins sided with Mitch McConnell's over their constituents in Maine. Of course they did. All the other GOPers voted no, too. As did Ben Nelson.

The Republicans created the economic crisis. Families across the country are suffering. Really suffering. But, the GOPers have decided those families don't matter.

That really is how the GOP governs. Sell out to Big Oil and Wall Street. Screw over the unemployed.

And if you don't believe that watch Rachel.

I cannot believe the insensitivity of these people. They claim to be Christian. Jesus would not know them....He wouldn't

Truth in Politics

All Political Ads should be this honest

h/t The Daily Dish

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Happy Wednesday

Sam sent me the above. I loves it.
I kind of feel like the picture above.. Like I have been running around in circles. I had a Home Board Meeting today at the Eastern Star Masonic Home in Boone. It was a good meeting and we got a lot accomplished.

I got home and the boys were glad to see me.

I had a nice long Facebook conversation with a Brother during the afternoon and it was good to talk to him.

I got a phone call from Craig and we decided to have supper at Cafe Northwest before York Rite (It is three hours after the meal and I am still enjoying the fried onion rings and Greek Burger) Got a phone call from one of Jon's friends who is walking Miles while Jon is in Spain and they wanted to take Miles for a walk. I told them OK but warned them that I had just had him groomed and I did not want him back muddy and wet. Next time..

I then ran to the cleaners to pick up my suit so I can wear it on Friday at the Festival of St. John.

Then I went out to the York Rite Meeting and was surprised to see the Lodge furniture rearranged. A new table is being brought in tomorrow for the Lodge Room and it will be a large one. I am excited to see it. After the meeting a young policeman was talking to Craig in the parking lot. I visited with him and invited him into see the Lodge room. He said his grandfather was a Mason. I gave him my card and a pocket petition so that if he decides he wants to he can petition the lodge.

Sat around for about 40 minutes after the meeting having a nice visit with some Companions. (In the York Rite we call each other Companion or Sir Knight.) Now I am watching a program (thanks to the wonder of my DVR) on the Boston Pops. I have been a fan of the Pops for decades and was able to actually see them when I was in Boston for a Church meeting. They used to be on TV regularly but no more. I miss them and am glad that PBS has this retrospective. I don't think I will erase it right away. The talent on this show was/is marvelous. Here is a sample:
Tonight I am so very grateful for the talent that has been shared with me and the friends I have because of my associations. As Jon said.. Life is good. (Of course knowing me i will soon find something to bitch about. In the meantime Happy Wednesday Addendum. Prophetic. It did not take long. oh well Life is still good for the most part) BIG HUGS to everyone. Always Remember That You ARE Loved. j

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Pickle Jar

Every so often Doug P sends me something that is worth sharing. This brought tears to my eyes. Wish I had had a dad like this one.
The Pickle Jar

The pickle jar as far back as I can remember sat on
the floor beside the dresser in my parents' bedroom.

When he got ready for bed, Dad would empty

his pockets and toss his coins into the jar.
As a small boy, I was always fascinated at the sounds the coins made as they were dropped into the jar.

They landed with a merry jingle when the jar was almost empty. Then the tones gradually muted to a dull thud as the jar was filled.

I used to squat on the floor in front of the jar to admire
the copper and silver circles that glinted like a pirate's
treasure when the sun poured through the bedroom window. When the jar was filled, Dad would sit at the kitchen table a nd roll the coins before taking them to the bank.

Taking the coins to the bank was always a big production.
Stacked neatly in a small cardboard box, the coins were
placed between Dad and me on the seat of his old truck.

Each and every time, as wedrove to the bank, Dad would
look at me hopefully. 'Those coins are going to keep you
out of the textile mill, son. You're going to do better than
me. This old mill town's not going to hold you back.'

Also, each and every time, as he slid the box of rolled
coins across the counter at the bank toward the cashier,
he would grin proudly. 'These are for my son's college
fund. He'll never work at the mill all his life like me.'

We would always celebrate each deposit by stopping
for an ice cream cone. I always got chocolate. Dad
always got vanilla. When the clerk at the ice cream
parlor handed Dad his change, he would show me the
few coins nestled in his palm. 'When we get home,
we'll start filling the jar again.' He always let me drop
the first coins into the empty jar. As they rattled around
with a brief, happy jingle, we grinned at each other.
'You'll get to college on pennies, nickels, dimes and
quarters,' he said. 'But you'll get there; I'll see to that.'

No matter how rough things got at home, Dad continued
to doggedly drop his coins into the jar. Even the summer
when Dad got laid off from the mill,and Mama had to
serve dried beans several times a week, not a single
dime was taken from the jar.

To the contrary, as Dad looked across the table at me,
pouring catsup over my beans to make them more
palatable, he became more determined than ever to
make a way out for me 'When you finish college, Son,'
he told me, his eyes glistening, 'You'll never have to
eat beans again - unless you want to.'

The years passed, and I finished college and took a
job in another town. Once, while visiting my parents,
I used the phone in their bedroom, and noticed that
the pickle jar was gone. It had served its purpose
and had been removed.

A lump rose in my throat as I stared at the spot beside
the dresser where the jar had always stood. My dad
was a man of few words: he never lectured me on the
values of determination, perseverance, and faith. The
pickle jar had taught me all these virtues far more
eloquently than the most flowery of words could have
done. When I married, I told my wife Susan about the
significant part the lowly pickle jar had played in my
life as a boy. In my mind, it defined, more than
anything else, how much my dad had loved me.

The first Christmas after our daughter Jessica was born,
we spent the holiday with my parents. After dinner, Mom
and Dad sat next to each other on the sofa, taking turns
cuddling their first grandchild. Jessica began to whimper
softly, and Susan took her from Dad's arms. 'She probably
needs to be changed,' she said, carrying the baby into my
parents' bedroom to diaper her. When Susan came back
into the living room, there was a strange mist in her eyes.

She handed Jessica back to Dad before taking my hand
and leading me into the room. 'Look,' she said softly, her
eyes directing me to a spot on the floor beside the dresser.
To my amazement, there, as if it had never been removed,
stood the old pickle jar, the bottom already covered with
coins. I walked over to the pickle jar, dug down into my
pocket, and pulled out a fistful of coins. With a gamut of
emotions choking me, I dropped the coins into the jar. I
looked up and saw that Dad, carrying Jessica, had slipped
quietly into the room. Our eyes locked, and I knew he was
feeling the same emotions I felt. Neither one of us could

This truly touched my heart. Sometimes we are so busy
adding up our troubles that we forget to count our
blessings.Never underestimate the power of your actions.
With one small gesture you can change a person's life, for
better or for worse.

God puts us all in each other's lives to impact one another
in some way. Look for GOOD in others.

The best and most beautiful things cannot be seen or
touched - they must be felt with the heart ~ Helen Keller

- Happy moments, praise God.
- Difficult moments, seek God.
- Quiet moments, worship God.
- Painful moments, trust God.
- Every moment, thank God.

Jon in Spain

Jon wrotes:
I see this almost everyday. It may be sad but I don´t miss Iowa at all. Not even a little.This from his Facebook account:

Yesterday Oceangraphic Institute. Today Prince Felipe Museum of Science. Tommorow Field trip a 100 km down the coast to look at organisms in the tidal zone and to measure the properties of sea water there. Tomorrow night Festival of San Juan down on the beach. Thursday Rome. Life is good.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Miles (and Bailey) on Monday - Part Two

The "boys" went to the groomer this morning. They were ready for me when I got there the first thing I saw was Miles peering over the half door saying "Take me home please." He had not wanted to come and the next time Jon is going to have to deliver him as he is too heavy for me. He does not like to get in the car (He has to ride in the back of my Jeep) and goes dead weight when I take him back to put him in. More than I can handle at 7:15 AM.
Next his friend joined it seeing what all the fuss was about. There were a lot of dogs there including one black poodle mix (something or other) who kept kissing him. Strange.
This is the owner. When she came out to help me get him out of the car he just stood there. She said that was typical of Collies. They do not like to jump up into cars or jump out of them. However when I got him home and back in the garage he jumped right out.
He does look beautiful - but then he did before. This morning at 5:00 AM when they got me up to go outside (every morning routine) he came in with black up to his elbows again. It was raining and he loves to dig. I just ignored it because I did not notice it until I got them back to the bedroom and two hours later when the alarm went off his feet were mostly clean. I had another dog like that. Dirt would not stick to Mandy either.
Bailey also went and you can click on his pictures to embiggen them. He, also, looks gorgeous after a visit to Under One Woof. Unfortunately he is getting senile. The groomer said she noticed it also. He doesn't like to be there and was most anxious to be home. Well he is 14+ years old (Birthday is August 25). I guess it is to be expected but I don't like it. For years he was my only company and friend and I loves him. Don't like to think of him getting older. I don't like living alone and the dogs make it bearable.