Friday, February 27, 2015

Great songs are part of my life

Music is very much a part of my life. I use it to express my feelings, to lift my mood, to pump me up. While there are some great songs out there, I put In My Life  by the Beatles very high on my own personal list. Enjoy!

Snowshoeing and life

There are times when I feel guilty just for being healthy. This morning, I left my wife, Ann, to go snowshoeing. For the past few days she's been having a terrible time with her RA flareups and extremely dry eyes, both at the same time. “I can deal with one,” she said, “but not both at the same time.”

I offered to stay home with her. “No,” she said. “There's no reason you should stay home and be miserable, just because I am.”

The thing is, she's right—and she's wrong. While there's really nothing I can do to help her—for me, I hate feeling helpless to help--there's something to be said for staying home for the sake of sympathy.

I was gone for five hours. I traveled through some beautiful scenic countryside, up the road to Guardsman's Pass in Big Cottonwood Canyon. I got a lot of good exercise and breathed in a lot of clean air. My blood was pumping and my sweat glands were working proficiently. My legs began to burn as I pushed on toward the pass, but I finally made it. I stood there taking in the view for a few minutes, talked to a couple of snowmobilers who had made their way up to join me, then headed back down.

The rest of the afternoon I've been there for Ann. I'm still trying to figure out how to help the eye situation—I did call her eye doctor and arranged an appointment for next week—and I massaged the area in her neck that's been giving her fits through this flareup. She needed help with her shower and lotion put on afterward. I was happy to do it. Sometimes the strong can only do so much to help the weak and suffering, and the rest must be left up to God and time.

It can be a frustrating experience being unable to help someone you love through their trials. There's something I need to learn from this, and maybe it's just that I can't make everything all better. And maybe it's that even though I can't make things better, I can be a support and a help through the trials. When it comes right down to it, the help we give or don't give in the times of need is what makes us good people or indifferent people. I hope I'm never indifferent to the suffering of my loved ones. That would be a tragedy indeed.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

When idiocy reigns

We are ruled by a collection of idiots. The latest, Marie Harf's bizarre suggestion that all ISIS needs to calm down is employment. Those of you who believe such nonsense have such a warped sense of good and evil in the world that it's nearly laughable. Harf's amusing if not so dangerous statement is just the tip of the iceberg of the downright stupidity of the Obama administration. From Eric Holder's statements on the recent ruling on Obama's governmental fiat on amnesty for illegals, to the President himself refusing to call a terrorist a terrorist and using moral relativistic remarks during his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, we are heading down a dark path from which, if cooler heads do not prevail, we are going to rue the day we took such a path. For a more realistic view of what's transpiring in the world, here's an excellent essay by Graeme Wood: clickety-click

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Great day skiing at Alta

I went skiing with my brother, Mike at Alta today. It was awesome! We had a few inches of fresh snow, and the sun was shining, and I only dumped it once.  Here's the pic he took:

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

One thing I believe in is love...

I just saw this great video about the love Irish Poet, Thomas Moore had for his wife. I love and appreciate great stories of love and wonderful music. Here it is combined in one amazing video: Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms

Share this with those you love on Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Character lines

“Some people try to turn back their odometers. Not me, I want people to know “why” I look this way. I’ve traveled a long way and some of the roads weren’t paved.”- Will Rogers

Turning back the clock. It isn't easy, nor is it really necessary. I love the Will Rogers quote above. People should wear with honor the lines, scars, or whatever they've earned or even just acquired in their lives. These are the signs that someone has made it through, and often the signs of how tough it was to do so. Is there ever really a finish line? I don't think so. There are always new challenges, new adventures, new highways to travel, and while we're on them, the old ones we've already bested, or that for a short time, bested us, travel with us.

Another quote I've always like is this one by Hunter S. Thompson: “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!” 

Amen!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Dreams

I woke up about 3 am this morning and tried to go back to sleep because I had gone to be late. I was up for about an hour and finally fell asleep. While asleep I dreamed that I was out walking by a pond and saw some small frogs swimming in the water. I hadn't seen a live frog in years in nature, and I wanted to catch one. I reached in the water and caught one on my first attempt. I scooped it up and put it in a container, then decided to go for one more. I really wanted my grandkids to see the frogs. There were other strange portions of the dream. I really don't know if dreams have meanings, but it seems awfully interesting that I was trying to catch a frog and that I hadn't seen one in years in my wakeful state.
Maybe it's just telling me that there's a goal out there that needs to be achieved, or maybe someone that I haven't seen in a long time that I'd like to see. Or maybe I just wish I could be a kid again and catch frogs.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Thoughts on vacationing

Now, here's my first post vacation blog entry. I think that overall the vacation did both of us a lot of good and we did some fun things, ate too much rich food, and had a lot of time to talk to each other, which is always a plus. We were actually sad to come back to real life, and I'm having a hard time getting back into working...laziness breeds laziness.

On the other hand, I'd have much rather spent a lot more time hiking on my trip than driving. Driving is hard on Ann, but hiking is much harder. Because of the severity of her rheumatoid arthritis, she can't really hike at all, but she still enjoys seeing the beauty of nature. Long rides though are not good for her either. It's really best if we can get to a place where she can stay put, go out for short drives, have something to do when she sends me out to do my thing, and be comfortable. Cheap motels are generally not possible anymore, because the chairs just don't work. When we went to Kingman, Arizona last year, we ended up having to switch hotels after the first night because the one we had scheduled just didn't cut it for her comfort. Thank goodness that the original motel was willing to give us a refund. Ofcourse, I promised to give them a good review on Trip Advisor. On that trip we moved to a Best Western and it was plush, more expensive, but worth it to make sure she was okay.

We have another vacation scheduled down in southern Colorado in August and I'm hoping that their furniture is good enough that she can be comfortable. This usually requires an arm chair that has a high back, or a recliner that is higher off the ground than some of them are, so that she can get out of it if her knees are flaring up. I will check into this as far as possible before we go so that we can take measures to ensure she has something comfortable to sit in.

That's what we really have to look for in vacation planning now. If she's going to be miserable, it just isn't worth going, for her, or for me.