Sunday, June 18, 2017

To My Dad

February 27, 2010

In light of Father's Day, I thought I would publish my paper 
which I had to write for my rhetoric writing class on 
someone I admired  from my teenage years who of course is my Dad       
      Since my teen years were so many years ago, the late seventies, where disco, bell bottoms and gasoline rations were part of the times, I had a to think simply, and try to remember who had made such an impact on my life.   I came to the conclusion that the only person that I could pick that had the most impact on my life, actually the greatest influence, would be a certain man in my life, my father.  
Growing up, my father taught me a lot, and I want to recognize and applaud him. Those who know me today would say I am just like him, to confirm their observation, I would have to agree, therefore him being an important part of who I am today, and I hope I can continue to walk in his reverence and reveal to others what he has shown me.
            My admiration for him begins with respect, something he taught me at a young age.    He was respectful to his own parents, my grandparents, and always stressed how important it was.    They lived far away and I can remember him calling them faithfully every Sunday.  Perhaps a small thought for some, but it meant a great deal to them.  It makes me proud still today, as I still make sure I call him, my dad, on a regular basis.
            Family has always been important to him.  He made sure he invited family over just about every weekend, so we could stay in touch and learn about our family’s heritage.  When I was a teenager holidays were a must at our house.  I could remember being just as excited for Christmas Day when I was a teenager, as I was when I was five, maybe because he made it so special by his ideas and preparations. Tradition was very important to him and not so easy to continue in a world that was changing quickly and losing its ground.
            He is the kind of father that when I was a teenager I thought he was the most strictest father in the world.  Curfews, lots of “No’s”, and responsibilities that were given to me had prompted me to think he was the meanest father in the world, until the one night that made it all understandable for his admirable ways of fathering.  The night that he said “no” to a party, was the night that other teenagers had gotten into trouble.  He had foreseen what could go wrong, where I couldn’t, and he stood by his decision of not letting me go to a place that would have caused me pain.  I admired him after that for making the choice that saved me from an awful situation, even though he knew it would put space between a father and a daughter.
            My father is probably the hardest worker I know.  Working for a large corporation until he retired, I don’t think he ever missed a day’s work.  Getting up and going to work or school for that matter, was probably the most important issue he felt strong about.  And lateness was just not acceptable.  These admirable values have been a part of my life since, instilled in me as a teenager.  Because of the importance of hard work in a timely manner, I still use these principles in my daily life and because of him, I have taught my own children the same value of hard work, prompt delivery, and the importance of being on time.   Another admirable quality is that if he starts building something, he finishes it, along with, if he said he will do something, he does it, and as an artist also, I can’t remember a painting that has gone unfinished.   
He traveled all over Europe with his job and always brought home some small memorabilia from where he went to share his trip with us.   He showed me not to be afraid to explore new places and ideas.  He feels you should always broaden your horizons and do what you love to do.  He is inspiring, that way. 
         He feels communication is very important and will talk to you about anything you want to and you enjoy listening to what he has to say because you know he is intelligent and he knows what he was talking about.  He is an amazing teacher.  He expresses through his wisdom and experiences and delivers them to the listener.  He shares his knowledge through experience and reading and has a love for the arts, literature, and painting.  I am an avid reader, probably because he always has a book next to his chair.  I can’t draw or paint at all, but the pride I feel when someone sees his paintings is overwhelming.  People remark on how talented he is and it fills me with great joy to be his daughter, not just because he can paint but what is admirable is that he uses his talent and doesn’t waste it.  He is a man that believes that we should utilize our talents and strengths.
            I admire him for his lessons in life which he still gives me today.  He always let you know what he thinks is important in life and takes a stand for what he believes in.  He knows how important certain things are in life and he wants me to know them too.  He takes the time to teach others and of course, myself, important lessons and these lessons stay with me even today.  He never complains about his responsibilities to his family, work, or obstacles that have come his way.  He always took control and dealt with the situation at hand, no matter how big or small it was.  He puts himself or what is important to him aside for others that need him.  I admired him when I was child and still do today.   Thanks Dad for your continuing support and love every single day.  I love you..


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Find the Path to What You Love to Do...

As I reflect on this past year, I think I forgot where I was going.  I have been so wrapped up in my daily routine, I forgot to follow the path to what I love to do.

We all have things that we love to do, like a hobby, sport or just spending time with family and friends.  The things that give us great joy.  And I am pretty sure that we all have a life full of encounters, surprises and times that can get in the way of doing these things. And we are all probably looking for a new resolution for the upcoming year. 

Well, I am thinking that this new year is a great time for myself or anyone to take the steps to find that path again. The path to do what you love to do.

Oh, I know that I will still have my daily routine, and I am sure many surprises, and encounters that will try to take me off this path again.  But this year, I wont forget where I am going.  This year, I will find and stay on the path to what I love to do...

Sunday, December 25, 2016

"The Spirit of Christmas"

I was wrapping some last minute gifts, when I realized I needed some Christmas bags to finish up.  I was already in my pajamas and settled in for the Eve, so I quickly threw on some sweats and a sweatshirt.  With no make up and a quick brush through the hair, I was off to the local dollar store to purchase what I needed.  If I was lucky I would be in and out of the store.

I had been feeling solemn and only slightly festive this holiday.  My year, has had its trials and tribulations, it's ups, downs. And I was feeling on the down side.  I had done my shopping, but I was feeling more like a Scrooge than a Santa. I was trying not to lose sight of Christmas and it's meaning, but having difficulty this year. So getting ready for the next day by wrapping presents was my first perk to find my Christmas spirit.  My next would be a small Christmas miracle.

Well, at the store, I was in luck.  They had an abundance of Christmas bags, so I hurried and picked what I needed, then rushed to the line to pay where there was only two people in front of me.

As I stared at the one dollar rings and candy bars on the shelf at the register, a young gentleman came up behind me, talking to himself, I think.  Well, I guess he was talking to me.  I looked up, first wondering of his intentions. After all the world has become a scary place, and I was feeling a little vain at the moment without my lipstick on.  

But my fear slowly turned to joy and I couldn't help but smile.  He said, "Candy canes, you think? Does this paper look like candy canes?"  I smiled wider and replied, "Yes it does."  "But it's plain isn't it," he continued.  I giggled and admitted, "Well, yes, I think it is plain, but the other paper you have is very nice." He said, "Yes, it's not good, I'm going to get something else."

Before I could speak again, he ran from the line and returned in a flash with another paper.  "What do you think?" he asked, "Better?"  It was white with gold and red ribbon like motifs. "Yes, much better, very festive," I smiled again and then thought to myself.  The paper he had picked was beautiful.  "A paper I would have picked."  I told him.  He then saw the bags in my hands and went on to say.  "Oh wow, bags, I need some of those nice bags."  I told him where to find them, he thanked me and was off again.  As he ran and disappeared from my sight, I whispered to him, smiling and giggling, "No, thank you."  

I didn't see him after that, I paid for my items and left the store.  The gentleman that was so excited about the paper he would wrap his presents in, didn't know that his carefree conversation with me had completely changed my mood.  I went home feeling festive.  I turned on the Christmas music and continued wrapping my presents, only now with a smile.  I felt the spirit of Christmas. 

So I just want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas...May your day be full of blessings and the spirit of Christmas...And may you carry that spirit with you every day of the year..

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Give the Gift of Reading...

Reading is part of our daily lives.  Whether we are reading an article in a newspaper, a magazine or a book, reading is important. It is a gift.

Reading is a gift because reading brings so much to the reader. Reading can be informative, adventurous, shocking, and emotional. It can take you on a trip or make you part of someones family. It's educational and recreational and we all need to learn how to read. And who doesn't love the smell of a new book?  I know, I am a book geek. 

On the other side of reading there are writers. I am a writer and it gives me great pleasure to write.  But what is even better is knowing that someone has read my writing and enjoys what I wrote. I have recently published a short story book and the outpouring support and positive feedback for the book has been to say the least, fantastic.  I am thrilled that readers really like my work and hearing that one of my stories made a person think, laugh or even cry because they felt the emotion in my words, is an even greater joy.  I feel that I have given them a gift and that makes me want to write even more.

But the reason for my writing today is not to promote my book (although I think you would like it), it is to remind everyone how wonderful reading is no matter what you like to read. This is about the gift of reading.  So this holiday season, whether for yourself or for anyone else on your list, let them enjoy a writers writing,  give the gift of reading...

Monday, July 4, 2016

What are You Waiting for?

Waiting to be seen at the doctor's office until they call your name or sitting in the motor vehicle department until they call your number can take up a lot of your valuable time.  Listening to the provided music on your phone from your insurance company or computer support while waiting for a live representative maybe rhythmic, but only if you are dancing to the music.  It’s just more wasted time. 

       Recently, I've been observing others while experiencing my own waiting time and I noticed that most people just sit and look around the room.  Yes, some are on their phones and some were reading magazines and one was actually putting on make up, but the majority of people were wasting time.  We all tend to waste time during these and other waiting periods.  

We sit and wait for someone else to decide when they will see us, talk to us, or help us. There is really so much we can do and not waste our precious, precious time.   I just recently calculated my own waiting time during some of these instances and found that over two hours of my precious time was spent waiting for a five or ten minute transaction.  So to continue my research, I am wondering, what do you do while you are waiting?
 Here are a few ways I have found to spend your waiting time.  Try catching up on some reading, a good book is always a good way to spend time.  Play a game on your phone, there are great games to expand your mind and make you think.  And of course if you have a mobile hobby like knitting, you can finish your project sooner than you think by not wasting time.  You can set up next months calendar or make a list of things to do.  You can pray, meditate or write down your thoughts and make a journal, just don’t waste precious time.  
So I am wondering...What are you waiting for?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

"Not So Happy Hour"

So I’m wondering if this is protocol for many restaurants or if this particular business owner had a choice for his actions. I will explain. 

My family and I had just arrived at our destination from a five and a half an hour drive to be at our nephew’s wedding the next day.   

We were looking forward to a nice meal on the eve of their marriage, so we walked over to the restaurant across the street.  We decided it was time to have a nice Friday pizza dinner and drinks.  It was an early dinner, actually it was during happy hour, from 5 to 7 pm so we would be able to enjoy happy hour prices.

Just to confirm, there was a large sign in front of the restaurant that said “Happy Hour 5-7 pm”.  It didn't say happy hour in part of the building or only at the bar.   It didn't even say happy hour on the other side of the partition from the bar or even at tables of four customers or less sitting on the dining side.   It said “Happy Hour 5 to 7 pm” outside the door to the restaurant. 

Well, the waitress seated the five of us at the table in the dining area which was just on the other side of the partition for the bar and we began to order our drinks. It was time for all of us to relax.  We would order our two dollar drinks reminding the waitress it was happy hour. The waitress hesitated,  and then informed us that we would have to pay full price for our beverages.

We all looked at each other and our watches and then back at her and asked her "Why?"   We knew it was within the allotted time for happy hour prices, and that is what the sign said outside the door, so why did we have to pay full price? After going back and forth about it, we decided to not go further with our discussion of this matter and ordered five waters.  

The waitress walked away, and then a few minutes later came back with the five waters and the manager.  He then continued to inform us we were not in the bar area, therefore we had to pay full price for our drinks.   But the sign says… we again pleaded our case, now to him.  By now it was the principle. The fact was that the sign was misleading. The manager then showed us a little paper sign on the table with the good old fine print you could barely see even with a magnifying glass "bar and bar booths only".  So we asked if we could go to the bar and bring the drinks back to the table? The manager said "No." We offered to move to the bar area but he informed us we had too many people to sit there. 

By this time we actually thought about leaving because of the false advertising outside the door, but after a long pause the manager decided he would do us a favor and let us have the two dollar drinks. Just one drink each. Wow. 

Well, overall we did have a nice dinner and the food was great. We finished around 6:30 and yes, you guessed it, after dinner we went and sat at the bar. After all we were here to celebrate and the drinks were only two dollars.   

Well there is a point to be taken here.  I would say the moral is "Remember things are not always as they seem and they also may not come in a large Font."

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Our History is our Children's Future..

I recently traveled to our nation’s capital.  The place where the roots of American history plant a seed in your heart, then grow in your soul.  It was inspiring to visit the District of Columbia and reflect on the past, and revisit the timeline of our great country.  It was eye opening to view how we have progressed in family life, production, art, literature and in government. The architecture alone was breathtaking and I am grateful for the people that help to keep the buildings and their surroundings preserved and safe.

When looking at the art, culture and the strength of our countries past, you can't help but acquire a sense of accomplishment and yearn to make your own mark on this dynamic country and its future. As I gazed at the works of others, I felt proud of the people who have come forward to be a part of our frontiers beautiful landscape. Without the strong will and contribution of our forefathers and every other individual that has been a part of creating this exceptional community, we would not be the renowned country we are today.  Yes, we may falter, and we may make mistakes, but we stay strong and united.  

This trip was truly an inspiration for me. I came home ready to continue my work, and pursue my goals and pass on my own history to my children and grandchildren. I remind them how important it is to appreciate the men and women that help us to build and protect our country and also teach them how important it is for them to be a contributor as well...   

Monday, October 12, 2015

Friend or Phone..?

Have you ever had to sit by yourself when eating a meal? Well, at work, most of the time, I do sit alone and sometimes it can really feel awkward.  

You feel like everyone is watching you eat, wondering why you’re sitting all by yourself. Well, one day I was at lunch and experiencing my sitting alone syndrome, you know, that I don’t want to look up in fear of people watching you, them wondering and sympathizing with you, as you sit all alone eating your meal all by yourself syndrome?

Well, this has happened a lot over the years, but that was up until this week when I realized I wasn't feeling as alone as I did in the past.  The reason being, I now have a smart phone.  Not just a phone, but a web, joining people, places and things.  A click to an adventure device, connected to the world!  I slowly opened up my purse and pulled out this amazing instrument of companionship. I was no longer alone.  I didn't need to fear looking up anymore, I had a new friend. 

Actually, I didn't have to look up at all, because everything I needed was on my phone. And when I finally did raise my eyes from this light of friendship, I noticed everyone was using their cell phone. Everywhere I looked someone was using a smart phone.  People were talking, texting, surfing or communicating with others using Siri or Skype.  Not one person was sitting alone at lunch, because they all had a new friend, their smart phone.  So I am thinking that we aren't ever really alone as long as we have a cell phone.  

Well this is all good, it is great to have an electronic buddy, but we always need to be conscientious.  Being in the actual presence of the people you love and care about, is the  most important thing in the world.  Remember, it is nice to have a connection all the time, and it's okay to have your phone as your "go to person" while eating a meal, but it cannot replace human companionship.  We really need to "reach out and touch someone".  So when you are spending time with others, try to put down the phone and ask yourself, is your phone your friend or is it just a phone?

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Pope Francis and I

Pope Francis visited the United States this past week, and no matter where he had placed his feet, our country has been truly blessed. I didn't travel to Washington, I didn't take a ride to New York City and I didn't get to go to Philadelphia, but I embrace a new peace due to his visit here.

I was able to view the Pope's travels on television and each time I was mesmerized by the leader of the Catholic Church, a leader of love, hope and peace and how our great nation came together to celebrate with him.

I was amazed by the people that surrounded Pope Francis, people of all faiths, families of all kinds and even the Secret Service who were taking children from the side of the road to bring to the Pope so they could be blessed.

I may not have been in Pope Francis' actual presence, but I do feel that I was truly blessed by him just by having him here, walking on the same soil as I walk upon. Pope Francis may not have motorcaded down the streets of my town, but he certainly did motorcade his love into my heart..

Friday, August 28, 2015

How Long is Too Long?

Going out to dinner for a special occasion or to spend time with family is always a nice idea. And whether you have reservations or not you expect to be seated, order your drinks and your food all within a reasonable amount of time.

So what I am wondering is how much time should a nice dinner take?  And when is the point of time when you are waiting too long for any or all of the courses in a meal?  Do you make an entire night of your meal or is dinner just a introduction to the rest of your evening?

Recently, my children took me to a very nice restaurant for my birthday.  A beautifully set table, great specials, interesting main courses and scrumptious desserts.  We were looking forward to a delicious meal.   We looked at menus, our server came to our table, and we requested waters.  She brought them in a timely manner and we placed our orders. It all seemed to be moving quite smoothly. Our appetizers came and within a few minutes after the salads arrived. Dinner was going nicely.

The waitress then cleaned up the plates and we would await the main course. We talked and enjoyed each others company. We talked and laughed. We looked at our watches and talked and laughed again. We tried to keep a now very bored two year old busy, talked, laughed, looked at our watches again and then began wondering where our main course was and what was taking so long.  

Well, the server had to be sought out after disappearing for almost an hour and then the manager was also summoned, both still arriving without the next course.

The manager pleaded his case, saying they were very busy and it was normal to take this long. It was a Tuesday night and we didn't think an hour was normal at all to wait for any course of our meal. Well our plates finally arrived, and by now we were annoyed to the point of not being hungry anymore.  

Do you think an hour is too long to wait for a meal? What do you think is  a normal time to wait for your dinner.  How long is too  long?