Tag Archives: love

Good News Stories

Rob over at My God, My Music, My Life, has put forth the challenge to find some stories that are different from the usual doom and gloom we’re too used to seeing in the daily news.  And I’m always up for a happy story.  It is my hope that people one day realize that hate does not change things… if you want things to be different, start from within.


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Joe Bartley, an 89-year-old widower in Paignton, Devon, placed an ad in a local newspaper looking for work to “save him from dying of boredom.”  The ad went global and landed him a new job at a local cafe.

Joe retired from his last job as a college cleaner 6 years ago.  He had previously served as a wireless operator with the 6th Airborne Divisional Signals in Palenstine after the war.  Once word got out about the ad, he was inundated with job offers.  He had never had a job interview before and was “over the moon” about acing his first one.

Joe hopes to work around 20 hours a week waiting, cleaning, and preparing veggies at the cafe near his home.  He is even keen on a bit of overtime.  One female customer, who is 75, said: “I’m looking forward to seeing him – I’ve just given him a kiss.  He is a dear old boy.”

So sweet!  Perhaps he will find love again too…

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(source and photos:  mirror.co.uk)


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Ben Ellis, a high school teacher who was battling cancer, was so loved by his students they turned up in droves to sing to him outside his home.  He was left fighting back tears at the window of his bedroom as 400 children serenaded him with song of worship, Holy Spirit You are Welcome Here.

The entire student body from the Nashville area high school where he taught, including parents and faculty, loaded up buses and cars to worship with him at his home.  Ellis lost his battle with cancer just 10 days later.

(source and photos:  mirror.co.uk)


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Second grade students at a school in Topeka, KS, had just finished reading a book about some kids who find a stranded sheepdog with a broken leg, when the teacher happened upon a Facebook post from the Helping Hands Humane Society that she knew the kids would love.  The post was about an Australian shepherd that had been taken to the shelter after a local vet found him on the side of the road with a broken leg.

The HHHS were asking for donations for $400 to pay for the surgery needed for Ryker.  The 2nd-grade students were compelled to help Ryker in any way possible, so the teacher sent a note home to their parents.

They came back the next day and the kids had raised over $450.  The shelter was thrilled and knew it had to do something to thank these sweet children.  So the shelter and Ryker headed off to the school with the intention of surprising the 2nd-grade class, and they didn’t disappoint.

“The kids’ faces were priceless,” said the teacher.  “They all got to get a picture with him… and the shelter was nice enough to make little prints of Ryker’s paws.”

The shelter says it has received over 100 applications from families hoping to adopt him.

Good begets good…

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(source and photos:  today.com)


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A woman celebrating her 80th anniversary in the same job says that retirement isn’t in the cards – as she still loves her work.

Elisabeth Davis may be 99 years old, but she’s not letting a little thing like age get in the way of keeping active and entertained as she heads to the offices of Culver Academies every day in her role as secretary and says that she has always been happy at the job.

After she left Culver High School as a student in 1935, Elisabeth took her first job as assistant to the dean in Culver Academies and has been there ever since.  She still uses a typewriter to get the job done, with the school ordering ribbon and parts specially.

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Elisabeth, 1931

In 1936 when Elisabeth started at Culver Academies:

  • The Munich Olympics were held and Jessie Owens made history with four gold medals — much to the anger of Adolf Hitler.
  • In the UK, King Edward VIII abdicated to marry Wallis Simpson.
  • The Spanish Civil War started.
  • Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Time was a cinema hit, and people were listening to A Fine Romance by Fred Astaire and Up The Wooden Hill To Bedfordshire by Vera Lynn.
  • FDR was president of the U.S.

Elisabeth says:  “I just live day by day.  If there comes a time when I feel like it, I will, but I don’t feel like retiring.”

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1983

(source and photos:  mirror.co.uk)

 

My Brother

As I headed to Target today to brave the masses, I started thinking about my brother.  For those who aren’t aware, he passed away last November from bone and lung cancer.

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He used to say some of the most profound things to me.  Completely out of nowhere.  One night when he had come over to visit, he looked at me and said, “I still find it hard to accept that I can eat a gallon of ice cream for dinner if I want.”  Because he was an adult now, and adults get to do what they want.  Nevermind that he was almost 30.  😀

My brother, sister, and I all used to work at the same place (my sister and I were typesetters and my brother was the computer programmer/tech guy).  Sis and I were hanging out in the back room with him for a little break, and he looked at us and said, “Just think… if a bomb went off right now, Mom would be childless.”  Okay, a little dark, but still… things that make you go hmmm…

And the things he used to do to me when I was itty bitty little, like 5 years old.  One time when I wouldn’t leave him and his friend alone, he found something resembling a coat hook in the carport and hung me up by my underwear to get me out of his hair.  He got into a bit of trouble for that.

And once when my sister and I were sleeping in a camp bed on the floor, he put tuna fish in our ears and let loose 6 hungry kittens.  He kind of got in trouble for that too… after my mother stopped laughing.

Here he is teaching my cat Zeus to read the newspaper shortly before Christmas dinner in 2000:

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He also was the first to teach me, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”  It was a lesson I learned well, way before I had ever heard of the book.  And, true story, it’s all small stuff.

Yet, at the same time, it’s the little things that really matter in life, isn’t it.  Such as a hug.  Or a kind word.  Or a smile.  Or 5 minutes of your time.

In January, I ran my first race of the year in his memory:

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My sister-in-law told me to look for a blue butterfly while in Maui as that would be a sign from Kris.  I saw one blue butterfly the whole entire 7 days we were there… at mile 11… and anyone who runs half-marathons (as opposed to full-out marathons) knows the emotional breakdown happening at mile 11.  I also saw a rainbow… on his 16th wedding anniversary.

So tell me, who have you hugged today?

Happy Holidays!

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Our 16th Christmas!

Merry Christmas from Paula at Never A Dull Bling and James at 50 in 50 Marathon Quest!  We wish you much love during this blessed season!

–Paula and James

My Four-Legged Furry Children

Obviously I’m a huge animal lover as I work at the animal rehab and rescue facility, but I believe I’ve failed to mention my own animal family.  We have 3 loving cats that I’d like to introduce to you.

NERO

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He’s our oldest at almost 15 years.  He’s kind of a rescue, sort of.  A couple had him as a kitten, gave him baths and everything, then the woman found out she was pregnant and didn’t want to risk owning a cat while being pregnant.  James was the softy and brought him home.  He came to us when he was about 4 months old.  He used to lay on James’ chest when he was little, and I warned him, “One day Nero is going to be a great big kitty and will still want to lay on your chest when he weighs 15 to 20 pounds.”  Guess what?!  I was right (I love being right).  Unfortunately he’s starting his downhill slide with some endocrine issues, but he’s still a joy to have around.  His favorite toy:  Nerf gun darts.wpid-20150829_141353.jpg

MEEP

MeepBack in 2011, a friend of mine had a litter of kittens, and I picked him out when he was about 3 weeks old.  Tuxedo cats are my absolute favorites.  He’s part Siamese, so he’s a talker.  Never shuts up, but can be a great conversationalist.  And with him being a boy, he really, really likes to cause trouble.  He loves to chew on white phone chargers or ear buds.  He also loves to floss his teeth with me… I’ll use one end of the string, he’ll use the other.

He’s actually our son’s cat.  Back when Meep was a kitten, before he gained all his weight and muscle, AJ thought it’d be cool to teach him to… fly.  Meep could jump 4 feet straight into the air when they were playing.  It was amazing.  He couldn’t do that now to save his life.  He’s a fat and happy 4-year-old, who still thinks I’m his surrogate mom… he comes to me for the hugs and the love and the suckling.  I used to let him curl up onto my shoulder when he was a kitten… guess where his favorite place still is.  Yep… I didn’t take my own advice to which I gave out 10 years before.  Meep follows AJ everywhere at his heels, just like a little puppy.  It’s the cutest thing.

His favorite toy is a fish net.meep flying

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SHEBA

wpid-20150903_223503.jpgShe’s the only girl of the group.  Sheba came to us about 2 years ago, I thought she had been abandoned.  It was in the middle of winter and the temperature was due to get down to 19 degrees F, and she was hanging out on our porch.  I made her a box on the porch to keep her warm, but I thought surely she had a home.  Three nights later, she was still hanging around, and it was about to get colder.  We brought her inside and she’s been with us ever since.  I actually found out who owned her, and the “owner” and I exchanged some words (I’d like to say it was pleasant, but it wasn’t). However, since then, Sheba has never left. She’s an outside kitty, which I absolutely don’t believe in for many reasons, but I can’t change how she was raised.  She still comes inside every single night to sleep with James and I, either between our heads or she will completely take over my pillow.  She gets along with Nero, but her and Meep have to stay separated.  I don’t know why, but even after 2 years, Meep will not accept her as his sister.

Sheba and I have races to the neighborhood mailbox.  She’ll give me a nice head start, but then I say, “I’m gonna beat you.”  That’s all she needs to hear… she puts it in high speed and wins every time.  She’s actually about 13.  Her favorite toy:  Anything that’s outside, from grass, to bugs, to… well, sadly, everything.

The other members of our family include 3 angelfish and 1 otocinclus (a 5-year-old sucker fish who has survived Armageddon)… I’m not as good with fish as I am with 4-legged creatures… but that’s another story…

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” — Anatole France

 

My Treasure Chest of Life

creativity carnival

Artwork by Shafali at shafali.wordpress.com

For some reason, I woke up this morning with this question on my mind… “What is the meaning of life?”  That kind of thinking must have derived from the allergy medicine I had to take last night because, believe me, I don’t consider myself a deep, philosophical person.  Besides, I discovered the answer to this question a few years ago.

However, when I was in my 20s, that question was constantly nagging me.  “Why are we all here?”  “What is the point of the daily grind of getting up and working most of the time, only to die in the end?”  Pretty grim, right?  Yep, those were my 20s, pretty grim.

Still, in my early 30s, I struggled with “No, really, what is the point of it all?”  Then I met a wonderful man I fell in love with, someone I could actually picture myself growing old with and  having a child with.  I consider my husband to be one of the greatest treasures I have.

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Four-and-a-half years later came the next of my greatest treasures… my son.  That’s when I understood…. “Ohhhh, I get it!  The happiness, the love, the being needed and wanted… this is what it’s all about!  I actually feel like a complete person!”  Life itself is a treasure.  And every experience I share in life with my husband, with my son, us as a family, gets stored away as a little treasure in my treasure chest of life.

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While this may not be the meaning of life for some people, it is to me. My family, my husband, my son, the love we share, the good times; these are all treasures that make my life complete.  One day, when I’m old and gray and sitting in a nursing home, rocking in my chair, wondering where my X-Box controller is, I will sift through the contents of my overflowing treasure chest that contains so many beautiful memories in which I’ll be able to say, “Yeah, I get it, and it was great.”

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(In response to Shafali’s Caricatures, Portraits, and Cartoons Creativity Carnival.)