Friday, March 17, 2017

What's in store?

Retail is changing in this country. We do not shop and buy the way we did 10 years ago, 20 years ago or 60 years ago.
In the past we had to buy locally. If you couldn't find it "downtown", or in the Sears and Roebuck Catalog, you didn't need it, and you just did without.
Just a few years ago, we all went to the local mall to shop for necessities and to browse. I remember walking around and going into dozens of shops, just looking. Now, most of those malls, that were so popular, are boarded up or have already been torn down.
Well, times have certainly changed. If I want to purchase an item, I don't immediately hop in my car and drive to a store. The first place I check is "on line." It's so easy and I can do it from my home. I just log on and type "jacket" or "blue sweater" or "bedspread" or anything. Dozens of places pop up, and I can shop until I find what I want.
Then, a few more clicks and I have purchased the item and I will shortly know when it will be shipped to me. Often the shipping cost is zero, and returning unwanted items is equally as easy.
Retail stores are closing every day, while the shipping business is booming. Both young people and old folks are shopping on line. During the holidays, the US Postal Service even subcontracted for UPS and FedEx.
You can't buck the trend. Just click away and shop till you drop.

Dear Lord. Change is inevitable. We cannot make things stay the same, and to try to do so, is foolish.
Help us to embrace change and to enjoy it. God, help us to choose our battles and to focus on the important stuff.
Bless our families and keep those that we love, safe and healthy.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Mid-Century Modern

Imagine my surprise, when I recently came across a magazine article about a young couple, living in Austin, Texas, who had turned their "21st Century" two-story home, into a Mid-Century Modern Classic. And, and this was what was so hard for me to wrap my mind around...........they did it willingly.
What? How wonderfully odd. I can marvel at such an story, because I have spent the last 40 years living in a 1950's rambling ranch style home, a true Mid Century Marvel. The outside is adorned in glass blocks and skinny brick....everything is on one level.  I live in a cliche'.
When we moved here, there were plastic tiles in the bathrooms, shag carpeting and yellow appliances in the galley kitchen. The windows had big old ugly Venetian Blinds and the Formica kitchen counter top was avocado green. Red flocked (bet you haven't heard that word in 25 years) wallpaper covered the dining room walls. I couldn't wait to update the place.
Several years ago, I visited a museum, near here, that featured an "all electric home" from the 1950's. It was all done up for the holidays, complete with an aluminum Christmas Tree. And, except for the tree, I felt as if I had walked into my own home!
So, back to these young folks. They had furnished their home with turquoise plastic chairs, avocado accents and chrome. The stately columns that had graced the front of their newly built home had been replaced with straight iron rods. Their open concept home was then divided into smaller, individual rooms and carpet was laid on the wood floors.
I finished the article in dumbfounded amazement. Who knew? Perhaps, I can repaint my stainless appliances a nice yellow shade for a more "up to date" look.

Great God. You must think we are all pretty silly. We are never satisfied. Remind us of the important things in life. Show us how to be gentle and kind with one another.
We are truly blessed.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Good Advice

A couple of my favorite movies are "You've Got Mail" and "Sleepless in Seattle". I try to watch them, every time they are on TV. The late Nora Ephron was involved in the production of both. So, I just ran across a great quote from Ms Ephron. It's terrific. I think there is great wisdom here.

"I was just with someone complaining about his mother. He’s 70 and his mother is dead. I sat there thinking, This is unbelievable. He was complaining about things she did to him when he was a kid. There are also a lot of divorced people who, five years later, are still walking around angry when they should be grateful. They love being victims. You get to a certain point in life where if you were younger, you’d say, ‘Think about getting a shrink.’ Then you get older and want to say, ‘Pull up your socks. Get over it.’ ” —Nora Ephron (1941-2012)

So, let's start today. Just STOP IT. Quit complaining, whining and belly aching. Nothing is going to get better because you are talking about it. Life and the world changes one person at a time. Change your attitude. Live your life to the fullest. Move on.

Dear God. Slap some sense into us. We are blessed. We should be more grateful. Show us how to use our blessings, to be the best that we can be.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Nansense and her sister.

My much older sister and I share an rare talent.The two of us can sing a short song about most any subject you can mention. And, if we can't think of a song, about a particular subject, we can probably recite a "piece" of poetry, instead.
This skill amazes people, daily. As the years pass, I realize this crazy skill set is very unusual. I wish that I were standing in front of you, right now, so that you could test my ability.
However, talented as we are, I have always assumed that this talent of ours was completely useless. I mean, I have never made a cent from this skill, and I don't believe that my sister has either. It's just something we do. If knowing nonsense songs and poems had been a money-maker, we would both be multi-jillionairs!  There is simply no market for what we do.
Well today, I had an A-Ha Moment. Right after giving a spontaneous rendition of "Alice, Where are you going?", at a complete stranger's request, I realized my "talent" had countless worth. People are entertained and amused by such wacky talent. The woman who had requested the song, was thrilled. I could read her mind...."What kind of a kook would actually know the words to such a bizarre song?"
Every January, I always sing my "Kansas songs" medley for anyone who will listen. My sister probably does the same thing. Although, when she sings them in Southern California, it must seem odder than when I do it, in Missouri.
Just a couple of days ago, I recited A.A. Milne's "London Street", to a bedazzled and puzzled Londoner. I believe she said the experience was "rather quaint".
Yes, we sisters are a talented duo. We are priceless. You should hear us perform.

Gracious God. We are blessed. Give us the courage and fortitude to do your work. Help us to love all of your children, and to spread joy and happiness where we can.