Posted on 12 Comments

Only The Good Die Young?

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Image credits: unknown

It broke my heart to hear that this young man had passed on, so young at observably the zenith of his life.

I confess I questioned God in my heart … WHY?

The head understands that His ways are not our ways, but sometimes the heart is grieved.

The old saying “only the good die young” … when it seems the cruel ones live on …

It does however appears that this young man had his heart in the right place, made a wonderful impact on us all and used ALL his God-given talents up.

So I can only pray I stand before my Maker after having used up all my gifts as well.

Be safe, be blessed and let us keep using those talents He blessed us with for His Glory.

Posted on 15 Comments

Plucking My Grandma’s Grey Hairs.

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Image credit: Pexels

Growing up my grandmother was a relatively young one. She was in her early fifties by the time I was a young teenager. So as time passed my grandma began having some grey hairs show up, not a lot as memory serves. Even when she died a few months shy of her eighty sixth birthday her head was still black and white.

Displaying some womanly vanity, she would employ the then young eyes of my sister and I to pluck the grey hairs from her head. To reward us for a job well done, she would give us pocket change. With our earnings we would buy snacks including the fruit of the season.

The place where we grew up we were truly raised by a community, we really did not buy much, as just asking would get you the fruits for free anyway.

Photo by Monica Infiesto on Unsplash

There were of course the oddball “frugal” ones who would rather their fruit fall to the ground, but those are tales for another day.

So my grandma would sit on the patio and we would stand around her chair plucking at her grey hairs. She would then count the hairs and pay us based on the quantity plucked. Well my sister and I quickly figured out that we could earn way more money if we snapped the longer hairs in two and so that’s what we did.

I was telling my daughter yesterday how naughty we had been in tricking our poor grandmother by snapping one long strand of hair and being paid for two.

Dishonesty at its finest … 

and my grandma never knew what we did …

or did she…?

It was all in good childhood fun!

Posted on 74 Comments

One Year On WordPress — Whoohoo!!!

Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com! You registered on WordPress.com one year ago.

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Image credit: giphy.com

One year ago I took tentative baby steps towards a forever journey. I came to WP and found a wonderfully supportive family.

A year ago I made my first post and hit the publish button, not having a clue as to what I was doing, but you kind and generous people decided to read, befriend and journey along with my fledgling self …

So here’s to you!!!

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Image credit: giphy.com

On this platform I discovered literary giants, from whom I can learn and grow and I am so grateful.

So here’s to you my WP family, I am grateful, I appreciate you ALL. Let’s continue to grow together!

I love you ALL!!!

Be safe, be well, be blessed!

JustPene’

 

Posted on 35 Comments

Things We lost But Never Had

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Photo by Ian on Unsplash

 

Our dad has passed away!

I awoke to my phone’s blue flashing light in the dark of the early morning. My sister had sent a message. It contained no preamble and was straight to the point. The words seemed alive and had movement, and power. The power to send my emotions in a tailspin and permanently alter the course of my life. The power to forever change what I had hoped for.

W H A T happened! I read the message again. “Our father has passed away”!

I walked into the bathroom and stood there trying to digest the information.

My father is dead, I corrected myself, my sire is dead. I searched the vestiges of my mind trying to grasp the fleeting emotions taking flight. Regret, anger, disappointment, sadness, grief and even … love?

It seems that we are somehow genetically programmed to love the people that created and birthed us. As co-author of my dawn he is at least ‘owed’ love? No matter the why’s or the how’s of our life experiences at his hands, love is a top contender in the vying emotions of my grief.

I peered at my face in the early morning light and there I found vestiges of the man he once was. My face, my height, my hair, my mind, my personality and my strength of spirit were all genetically gifted to me from this man … now he was gone. All my life I had always been told I looked and behaved just like him. I recognize in some ways I am indeed a female version of him.

I stood staring in the mirror while my mind desperately sought glimpses/memories of him … and I saw him in myself. For the past two nights I could not sleep, I tossed and turned and this past night especially I had awakened sometime around 3 am.

Suddenly startled in wakefulness I am persuaded that it was around that time that he crossed over. I have always been sensitive like that, a little “knowing”. 

I find that I am sad and have resigning myself to the fact that our chapter is now complete, there will be no words added, no epilogue left in this book. Our relationship has reached its natural conclusion.

Our story has been written.

There will be nothing more for us, our fractured relationship will never mend. I had hoped against hope that he would have a long life ahead and that there would be time…  I am well aware that tomorrow is not promised, but I hoped he would mature and become a granddaddy where he never was a dad.

It will never be.


Photo by Taylor Smith on Unsplash

 

COVID continues to steal, kill and destroy!

Yesterday I had inquired of my sister as to his state of affairs, there was no real change, he remained in the ICU suffering from COVID-19 and having difficulty breathing. We decided we would pray for him and we did.

I confess I was ill prepared for the message of this morning … our dad has passed away.

I will not  be travelling to Guyana for his funeral due to travel restrictions. I had pondered several times throughout my life what I would feel when he died and I always told myself that I did not care. Now I am in the reality of that situation and I do care!

I have prayed that he had the wherewithal to acknowledge his transgressions and have asked forgiveness and I know that our God is a merciful God. So in this I have hope, to one day to meet the daddy in heaven he never was able to be on the earth.

Be safe everyone.

 

You can read a bit more about my non-relationship with my father here.

 

Posted on 22 Comments

Things Lost In A Fire

The tragedy — this person house went up in flames during this very hard season of our lives.

Yesterday as hurricane Laura was hitting us with some rainfall this tragedy unfolded. I looked out my front door and saw a plume of dark smoke. At first I thought it was a cloud but then I realized to my dismay that it must be a fire. About 1/2 a mile from my home, this person’s life was going up in smoke.

The neighborhood came out to witness the tragedy, I do not know the details of what happened. The firemen were there and doing all they can, but the blaze was not abating quickly.

We all just stood there praying the fire would just go out.

From my vantage point it seemed like what remained was just some of the framework. Someone’s life was up in smoke. I could not sleep last night as I thought of this person/family, they awoke in the morning with everything intact and this night it was all gone!

I feel for them in the current season of our lives and not knowing what happened or their circumstances. I had never witnessed a fire and it disturbed me so I could not sleep.

Here with my WP family, so many of us trust God for our daily bread. And we thank God that we have come into His Kingdom and His grace, love and care.

May our Savior, Jesus Christ continue to guide and protect us and may we remember to lift up this person/family in our prayers.

Sincerely, Pene’.

Posted on 17 Comments

A Trip to an Outdoor Reserve

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Last week the children and I decided to take a drive to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center  in Texas … it was a lot of fun. It was drive through and not too many persons about.

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A natural habitat.

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Look at those antlers.

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Looking for pellets.

 

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We were advised to feed the giraffes by hand which the children did and loved it … they do slobber a lot. I was chicken and did not feed them, lol.

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They are tall, graceful and beautiful creatures.

I am not the best videographer, I will have to do better in this regard.

The park was lovely in its natural state and we enjoyed the trip very much.

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The deers munching.

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The day was sunny and the views awesome.

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A nice look out area.

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God’s own country.

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I found this old tree very interesting.

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My little Snooky

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My Snooky and I. The gift shop area was open but not many customers around.

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The views were awesome.

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The Cheetahs were not paying any attention to us and just laying under the trees.

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Hippos

 

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The layers of the soil.

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The view.

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All in all we had a great day with lots of fun. My daughter and her friend were along for the ride, but did not want their faces on the blog, so no pics of them.

Have a blessed and safe day everyone.

Posted on 51 Comments

7 Reasons To Donate Blood

This blog post is about the importance of blood donation and its' role in saving lives.

According to the American Red Cross, 36,000 units of Red blood cells are needed every day in the US alone.

7,000 units of plasma and 21,000,000 components of blood are used each year in our country alone.

The blood type most often requested is Type O, but anyone who can should donate and various others blood components are processed and used, not just whole blood.

COVID-19 Critical blood Shortage

Critical Blood Shortage -: 

  • Children’s cancers of the blood.
  • Emergency childbirth.
  • Open heart surgeries
  • Car accidents, traumas.
  • Acts of violence etc.
  • Organ transplant surgeries.
  • Sickle Cell Disease.

How to Prepare To Donate Blood

Beginning the day before donation;

  • Drink plenty of water and wholesome liquids. No alcohol.
  • Limit your caffeine intake.
  • Eat a well-balanced meal 1 – 2 hours before donation.
  • Get plenty rest.

In the event that you donate plasma, please ensure that you are not taking aspirin or aspirin-containing products up to 48 hrs before you donate.

It is imperative that you consult with your medical provider before starting or stopping any medications.

Persons May Be Excluded If

  • They are pregnant
  • Have hepatitis
  • Cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Heart disease
  • Received blood in last 12 months
  • Active infections, etc.

The need for life giving blood and blood components does not discriminate…

You can find a center to Donate by:

The process can take as little as 10 minutes to collect 1 pint of whole blood.

Donate Blood. Save a Life!

This is a crucial event. We are in a state of crisis!

Bring a photo ID with you.

Donate today!

Thank you. Peace, health and blessings.

Posted on 36 Comments

Benefits of Walking Barefoot

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Photo by Ana Grave on Unsplash

Why your bare feet may keep you grounded

I grew up running and playing mostly barefooted. As children we ran and played with abandon and no shoes during the vacations from school and on weekends.

Whenever we could, like on our way home from school, we would remove our shoes for added freedom and fun! Who invented those restrictive items anyway?

During the rainy season, the children had a grand time just wading in the water playing and kicking it around. We would hold our dresses up or roll our pant legs out of harms way and just be young.

A favorite pastime was playing what we called ‘duck duck goose’, a game where you grabbed the flattest stone you could find and let it skim the top of the water before going under. The one whose stone stayed afloat the longest won.

Those were fun days and I would not change my childhood for anything.

As I grew older however I was drawn to science and that knowledge caused me to pull away from my norm in favor of always wearing shoes, at least outdoors.

I never wear any type of foot covering indoors (unless it’s really cold), as I love the feel of my feet on the natural floors. I use my bare feet to also let me know how many times I need to clean my floors. I hate the feel of debris and grime underfoot. Walking bare-footed has become a lost art, so I began to wonder why…

The art of walking barefoot on grass or earth is known as grounding or earthing and offers many health benefits.

 

Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

Our bodies and our relationship to the earth.

Emerging scientific research has been unearthing, so to speak, a symbiotic relationship between living things and their environment. Scientists are seeking answers as to some of the ways in which our environment may influence our health.

According to science, direct physical contact with the earth allows us access to the vast supply of electrons on the surface of the earth. Our modern lifestyle and use of foot coverings separates humans from such contact and that the disconnect may well be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and in physical and mental health.

Grounding or earthing

Direct connection with the earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and scientific reports of well-being. This grounding or earthing refers to direct contact with the earth’s surface. The skin-earth contact allows for the earth’s electrons to enter and flow through our bodies promoting good health.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Benefits of walking bare feet

  1. Better sleep by improving the circadian rhythm

  2. Reduced pain / increased healing time

  3. Reduced inflammation

  4. Reduce blood viscosity

  5. Increased wound healing

  6. Decreased stress

  7. Improves balance and is our natural walking pattern

  8. Build strength and increased mobility

  9. Better able to maintain homeostasis

 

Risks of walking bare feet

Photo by Stephan Seeber on Unsplash

Of course walking bare feet is not without risks;

  1. be mindful if you are diabetic and have peripheral neuropathy of any kind as you may not feel injury to your foot.

  2. If you have any type of decreased sensation you have to be very aware of where your feet are at all times.

  3. Note your surroundings for situations that may cause physical or parasitic infections.

  4. Consider the surface and the impact of your feet against said surface.

  5. Assess each day for injuries.

Final thoughts

Science is playing catch-up to the health benefits of bare-feet walking. Emerging links show we are our best selves when we make direct contact with the earth and benefit from its electrical pulses that influences our health and mental wellness in positive ways.

We are better able to care for our joints when we are not outfitted with shoes that may be ill-fitting causing more discomfort than they offer protection.

Walking without shoes strengthens leg and lower back muscles and allows for transfer the earth’s electrons from the ground into the body.


So take good care of your feet and avoid the pitfalls below … 😊

Photo by Tania Melnyczuk on Unsplash

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc
  2. https://www.livescience.com/
Posted on 16 Comments

Memories of New York

Things lost in relocation — A nostalgic look back!

Photo by Fabien Bazanegue on Unsplash

I arrived in N.Y. from South America several decades ago. It was a February day, cold and snowing. Matter of fact my trip began in the Caribbean island of Antigua and I recall the coldness that permeated the aircraft as we entered the northern hemisphere. We touched down at JFK airport and my soul came home — I fell in love! This is where I was born to be!

It was a glorious February day and a boon to a person who had spent their young days always sweating profusely. I did not know what the ailment was called at that time (hyperhidrosis). I just knew I was always hot and sweating when others were dry and seemed perfectly comfortable.

I began visiting Texas since I had family her, but the heat was always a big problem for me. After my first visit I learned that if I were to survive here I had better visit during the winters. And for many years that’s just what I did.

Then in 2010 some life changes were happening and I decided to change my status from visitor to resident. So I trekked on over with bits of my life leaving the bulk of it, both literally and figuratively behind.

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Photo credit: justpene2010

                                     Our first day as Texas residents …

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Photo credit: justpene2010 (my Snookums was not yet born)

Gee and I began working at a large hospital with a super busy ER. I needed to get outside to take a break or just to breathe sometimes. The sun hitting the back of my neck as I walked to my car convinced me I could not live here.

The heat!!! Dear God the heat! I was convinced hell was housed in the south.

But I rallied on and some 10 years later here I remain. My recent trip to NY…my   one- time stomping grounds did fill me with some nostalgia.

Photo by HyoSun Rosy Ko on Unsplash

Things I feel I lost:

1. Shopping …nothing beats N.Y. fashion (and I was a fashionable girl).

2. The cold … I love the cold! It is currently summer here in New York but I recall how much I loved winters here, my favorite time of year. The magic and mystery of it all.

3. The FOOD — the best cuisines from every single culture is offered in its authentic self in N.Y. The competition is steep and your presentation and taste has to be on point to even make the cut as there are so many others to choose from.

4. The sounds  — N.Y. is not a quiet city. It rumbles, shouts and rages in a continuous circle…the city never sleeps after all.

5. The people and the fashion — new Yorkers live a life on their own terms.

6. The air of excitement and the busy air of passers by. New Yorkers always seem so busy living life. 

Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash

New Yorkers dance to the beat of their own drums, I envy that, a little. They conform to and for no one. Their fashion tastes are their own and they make no apologies for their choices. I was once one of those New Yorkers with my own sense of fashion complete with the colored hair. 

I realize you lose things in relocation. Texas is now my home but I will always be a New York kinda girl!

This nostalgic trip down memory lane does not mean I am planning to relocate … I just mourn (more like just a little cry) for things I lost that I once had.

May God continue to watch over us all! Be safe!