It was twenty years ago today that "The Puppy Episode" of Ellen aired on abc-tv. It's amazing how much better things have gotten, and it was nice on Friday seeing the kindness shown to Ellen DeGeneres, who not only came out on that program, but also in real life on Oprah Winfrey's talk show. It is sad though that DeGeneres and episode guest star Laura Dern both faced career backlash for this sitcom moment. It changed lives though and some say it saved lives. Still a ways to go.
Saturday, April 29, 2017
Friday, April 28, 2017
I remember when I was little seeing the niceness of the spring plants poking up through the snow. I remember the hyacinth plants that I loved for both their beauty and that wonderful smell. I remember how nice the changing of the seasons made folks feel. That was when I was little in Upstate New York. I don't seem to see the niceness as much anymore. Why is that?
Thursday, April 27, 2017
I suppose the bus driver didn't see me because she kept on going. I waved and yelled, but it didn't do any good - for her, but another driver, going the other direction. He pulled around, let me board and wouldn't let me pay. He then proceeded directly to my door (he knew where I lived because he sometimes drove that other route), before resuming his schedule. He might have gotten a tad behind, although I am sure he was able to make it up. He also did one of the kindest things I can imagine, and it made my day!
at 7:51 AM
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Some churches celebrate the Feast of Saint Mark the Evangelist. Whenever I think of Saint Mark, I think of a church in Berkeley, CA named for him. Some of the kindest people I have ever met are there and there is so much love and joy. I suppose that should be common in churches, but it doesn't seem to be. Perhaps they are paying good attention to their patron and the One he followed.
at 7:11 AM
Monday, April 24, 2017
Here are a few random kindness suggestions for this Monday: Volunteer to fix up an elderly person's home. As you go about your day, pick up trash. Buy books for a day care or school. Remember the bereaved with phone calls, cards, plants or flowers, and food. Send a gift anonymously to a friend. Pay for the person behind you in the movie line. Bring flowers to work and share them with coworkers. Share your smile generously. Donate time at a senior center. Say something nice to everyone you meet today. Clean graffiti from neighborhood walls and buildings. Call an estranged family member.
at 7:33 AM
Sunday, April 23, 2017
Remember back around Thanksgiving when folks were collecting canned goods or just after that when toy drives were in full swing and collections for warm clothing? Why don't we do that ALL the time? There are people in need at any time of the year, not just for a month or two at year's end. Think about putting aside a couple of food items every single week and donating them to a food bank, church, or other organization that is helping those in need. Some places will also accept toys and clothing as well.
at 11:53 AM
Saturday, April 22, 2017
The earth has been here a long time and it will be around for a long time to come, BUT will it be able to sustain life? Will plants and flowers grow and fish swim in the water and birds fly through the air? Will cows and chickens, dogs and cats, all manner of life, including humans, still roam the planet? Environmental protection is important for the future. They earth will be here, but will it be bare? Thanks up to us!
Friday, April 21, 2017
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Every April 20th I think of my grandmother - she was born on this date. I think of Nana more than once a year though. She was one of the kindest and fairest people I have ever known, and I learned a lot from her. I think our entire family learned the importance of kindness because of her.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
Two days after a murder that the killer recorded on video and posted to Facebook, the killer apparently took his own life. When Whoppi Goldberg made the announcement during her tv program yesterday, the audience applauded, until Whoppi held up her hands and asked for quiet. Last night convicted murderer Aaron Hernandez apparently committed suicide as well and the internet is lit up with comments of happiness at this and even jokes. I don't understand. I seriously don't. Suicide is not to be cheered. Has all kindness disappeared. ALL life is precious, even the lives of those who do wrong.
at 7:05 AM
Tuesday, April 18, 2017
There are so many ways to show kindness toward others. Here are a few. Offer to return a shopping cart to the store for someone loading a car. Call an estranged family member. Clean graffiti from neighborhood walls and buildings. Buy a stranger a free pizza. Mow a neighbor’s grass or sweep a neighbor’s walk. Smile and acknowledge everyone you encounter. Give a bag of groceries to a homeless person. Treat someone to fresh fruit. Sing at a nursing home. Open the door for another person.
Monday, April 17, 2017
We all know there are folks who try to rush Christmas every year, and the same thing is true about Easter. Just so you know, Easter lasts four times longer! Yup. Fifty days! Don't celebrate Easter? Nope a problem, but allow those who do, the joy of this annual remembrance of the resurrection of Jesus.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
Christian evangelist Joslin McDowell tells us "No matter how devastating our struggles, disappointments, and troubles are, they are only temporary. No matter what happens to you, no matter the depth of tragedy or pain you face, no matter how death stalks you and your loved ones, the Resurrection promises you a future of immeasurable good." A good reminder at Eastertime.
at 9:48 AM
Saturday, April 15, 2017
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you." -Gospel According to Saint Matthew
Friday, April 14, 2017
Thursday, April 13, 2017
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Last night while shopping, the store was playing Humble and Kind, a song written by Lori McKenna and sung by country music artist Tim McGraw. I've heard it before, but last night, I was really listening to the lyrics: "Don't take for granted the love this life gives you. When you get where you're goin' Don't forget turn back around And help the next one in line Always stay humble and kind." How wonderful if this could become the theme song for our lives!
Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Do you ever just need someone around to hear you? Sometimes, especially in times of crisis, the thing you need the most is someone to talk to. They don't have to talk back. How wonderful it is to have a person who can simply sit in silence and listen to those who need a listening ear. In times of worry or sorrow or loneliness, this is particularly true. Listening to another person is a great act of kindness.
Monday, April 10, 2017
Sunday, April 9, 2017
Did you ever have someone tell you how many things they had done for you and how you now owe them? In my way of thinking, they gave you nothing at all. Gifts don't come with strings attached. Of course if is always very nice to do kind things for those who have done kind things for you, but that should not be your reason. Actually no reason is necessary at all. Give out of the love in your heart, and expect nothing in return. That is the real joy.
at 7:39 AM
Saturday, April 8, 2017
Friday, April 7, 2017
Just about everything I ever heard from the incredible Maya Angelou, makes me feel good. It's so appropriate that she is the one who said "I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
Thursday, April 6, 2017
It was only in the last several years of his life that I knew him, but the kindness he showed toward me, my mother, and every single person he met was inspiring. Ewing was a genuinely nice man, and from the stories I heard from those who had known him longer, he had always been nice. He was an adventurer too, having hopped a freight train and traveled across the country in his younger days. He was also a man of great faith - always active in his church, and in his community. Memories of Ewing will always stay with me.
at 7:13 AM
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Thinking of the long show business career of Marlene Dietrich, you might not easily be able to quote her, but I find one tiny sentence of hers to me a great anthem for our lives. Dietrich said "Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless."
at 7:30 AM
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Thinking of Martin Luther King, Jr. on the anniversary of his murder, these words of his come to mind: "We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies."
at 7:49 AM
Monday, April 3, 2017
Sunday, April 2, 2017
How fortunate I am to have enjoyed so much of the work of Groucho Marx. From his films and tv appearances, must folks think of him as a very funny man, but he was also very wise. Said he: “I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”
Saturday, April 1, 2017
I remember when All Fool's Day was a time of clever jokes. We would try to be creative and to actually fool everyone. These days there are just too many mean-spirited pranks. In my opinion, that's not fun. That's a terrible thing to do. Scaring someone out of their wits isn't very kind or funny. I think the real fool now is the one who plays evil jokes.