Thursday, November 29, 2007

Responses Galore!

Looks like my last blog (about relationships that reek) hit a nerve almost everywhere. Readers are emailing me heart-rending regrets over not having shown more love in a troubled relationship before someone died. Others have said they patched their relationships and their world is brighter and much less stressful than in it was in days of yore. They're smiling and laughing again instead of living with knotted stomachs and rampant bile! Still others are struggling with the issue and realizing they need to do something to regain lost ground in the "human heart" department.

What a wonderful world it can be when we realize we are all in this together and that each of us can make a difference that soars rather than sinks and stinks! (The difference you make in any relationship makes it soar or sink. What do you do differently in healthy and troubled relationships? There's your key! Treat everyone like a treasure and they'll likely become one -- and if they don't, you've done your best -- which feels great all by itself, provided you don't let your pride and ego rule the day by feeling "superior" to the one who doesn't "get it"!)

Imagine the possibilities. What's holding you back? Ego? Pride? Stubbornness?

There's a spot in each of us that knows better. There's a spot that's pure love, aching to come out and "get real."

Find it and re-make your world!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Thanksgiving ... by Abraham Lincoln (Thanks to Debbie H for this!)

The year that is drawing towards its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever-watchful providence of Almighty God.

In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American People.

I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.

Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Merry KrisSmith Newsletter Is Ready!

I awoke with a start! Realized I hadn't written a holiday newsletter yet! So I did that this morning in the wee hours and have emailed it to everyone I have an email address for. This will cut down on obscene postage prices and hand-cramps from sending 100+ envelopes. I'll send cards and newsletters to the folks I know who don't have email. (Yeah, I know and I apologize already -- it's so much less personal to get an emailed newsletter and holiday greetings, but this girl's on a budget and this is the way it has to be until I get R & F (or just R).

Don't worry if you didn't get an emailed newsletter. If you're following this blog, you know all the news anyway! I just buttoned it up and tied a bow onto it (in under two pages) for those who don't have access to this blog. or to emails to me. If you didn't get one and want it, just let me know your email address and I will send one on to you!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

A'Biking We Will Go, A-Biking We Will Go...

I stopped at GI Joe's Sporting Goods today to ask when their bikes would be on sale... and guess what? They're having a 30% off on almost everything sale (perfect timing), as long as customers buy a total of three items...

So I bought a mens Diamondback Wildwood Bike (same as my sister's, whose bike I rode and loved a couple months ago), a bike carrier for my car, a bike lock, a gel bike seat cover, and some biking gloves. The total price came to less than the bike would have cost with tax, so I got away like a bandit. A store employee even put the bike rack on my car so I didn't have to figure out that part of the conundrum. Good thing I asked, too, because he had trouble, so I would STILL be in the parking lot if I'd had to put the thing on! He's not even sure he got it on right, but it's solid and the bike made it home without a hitch, so I call that a success.

I've already ridden about three miles, even though it's nearly arctic outside. I plan to ride it for thirty minutes every day it isn't raining all winter long unless the roads get icy. It's great cardio-vascular exercise and is fun besides!

Casey's last soccer game for the season this morning was terrific and the sun was out (forecast was for rain, so God blessed us). The girls (most of them 7 years old -- Casey turns 7 on November 22nd) have improved tremendously over the course of the season as they learned not only rules but strategy. At this age, no one keeps official score, but I think "our" team (The Wildcats) won most of their contests. Of course, their coaches are my niece and nephew, Wendy and Phil (Casey's parents), and Wendy was a soccer star in high school and college, so our team has the best coaching available to seven year olds, probably.

Wendy is just something else with kids. She's perfect -- encouraging and inspiring. She corrects with love and by example. Every kid should have a coach/parent/mentor like Wendy! Phil didn't play soccer in school -- he was a football jock -- but he's out there with the kids and Wendy every week doing his "positive male figure" thing for all concerned. I'm crazy about them both and about both of their kids.

[Addendum: I'm also crazy about Dawn Foxley and her kids (Lizzie and Isabella) but they don't figure into today's blog because they are out and about doing something else today. In fact, I haven't seen them in three weeks! What gives?! I need my Foxley Fix!]

Casey told me last weekend that she is beginning to write stories and LOVES it. Wendy says Casey's teacher always comments on how much more she writes, when given assignments, than the rest of the class. She said she's lucky to get two or three sentences out of most kids, while Casey regularly turns in a page -- with writing on both sides! Way to go, Caserooni!

Casey interviewed me a few weeks ago and then wrote up the interview and had me read it. Except for spelling errors (hey, she's only six -- and the way she did spell the words made sense phonetically), it was complete and amazing.

Since she is getting into it with such passion and success, for her birthday (shhhh!!!) I have bought her a blank book journal and eight pens -- four black, four colors -- and have written, "Given with love and pride to the newest writer in our family CASEY HOPE McNIVEN on your 7th birthday, November 22, 2007, by the other writer in the family, your Aunt Kris." Then on a facing page, I added, "You go, girl! Create a world, or write something about the world you're in... Whatever you do... Have fun, share wisdom, and ENJOY!"

I think she's going to be surprised and very happy.

She's the kind of kid who remembers what I got her last year for her birthday. She told me today, "You got me an otter puppet last year!" Why, sure enough, I did! It's in her bedroom and she says she loves it.

I told her I had decided on something this year that I think she'll love too -- "Something that you and I have in common other than a love for animals." She doesn't have a clue what that might be... and don't you tell her!

Guess that's it unless I get an inspiration later today...