Monday, July 24, 2017

Education & Family

Saturday, December 8, 2012

A few years ago, I volunteered as a gallery guide at Brookgreen Gardens in Pawleys Island, SC. If you are not familiar with that glorious place, just go online to check it out.

Part of the beauty of Brookgreen is the sculpture that can be found throughout the garden. Each year, the National Sculpture Society holds a competition. The pieces are displayed in one of the galleries and visitors are allowed to vote for their favorite.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Each year on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, we haul our Christmas boxes out of the attic. We put up our small, artificial tree, hang our stockings on the electric fireplace, and set up the nativity set.

This year I cried when I unwrapped the baby Jesus figurine and set him in his manger. Tears started. My husband said, "Sentimental sucker." I smiled through my tears, because he has called me that many times in our 30 years of marriage. He says it with love and understanding of his emotional wife.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

My 10-year old grandson plays a video game that has some monsters in it. However, he never sees the monsters because he knows how to avoid them.

When I visited his family recently, I watched him play his game. I commented, "The game seems rather boring. All you are doing is walking around, gathering tools and weapons, and building tall towers of bricks."

He said, "Grandma, these towers help me escape the monsters." "But," I answered, "You never see a monster."

"Right," he said. "I don't like to deal with monsters. They could kill me."

Saturday, November 17, 2012

When our granddaughter Kiele was in pre-school, her teacher taught the class a wonderful grace to say before meals. It is:

Thank you, God, for happy hearts

And rain and sunny weather.

Thank you for the food we eat

And that we are together. Amen.

Our family has said this grace for many years now. Kiele is now a sophomore in high school. Her two younger brothers have learned the poem and we all hold hands while we recite it.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The television is full of images of disaster. The Jersey shore may never be quite the same. Staten Island looks like a war zone. People in Southern Manhattan can't get heat or water. Hurricane Sandy really did a number on the East Coast.

When people are in the middle of a crisis, most are feeling nothing but anxiety and tension. Feelings of helplessness and lack of control bring on great stress. Reactions at these times of trial vary from person to person because each of us handles disaster differently.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

When I was younger, I collected things. I had collections of music boxes, seal statues, Lladro porcelain, Hummel figurines, baskets, antique jewelry, books, blue glass and Williamsburg pottery. My mother used to call my "stuff" 'dust catchers.' She tolerated my collections, but she couldn't understand them. She didn't have a collection of her own.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

I received an email from one of my regular readers. She was complaining that her son in Junior High had too much homework each night. She asked me my opinion about homework. Here's my answer-

Homework is a problem because of its name. Who likes WORK? If we called it "home exploration" or "home problem-solving" or "home practice," perhaps families would accept it more readily.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

One of our elderly neighbors recently fell and broke her hip. She went to a nursing home for rehabilitation and did not do well. Her age was against her, and the inactivity took its toll. She died last week.

This event brought back memories of my Aunt Madaline. She, too, fell and broke her hip. She never truly recovered from that incident. Ultimately, she went to a nursing home and died there.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Have you ever read the book "Please Don't Eat the Daisies"? It was written by the mother of small children. The title comes from one of the instructions she gave her children when she left them in the care of a babysitter.

Among the other warnings that mother issued were: "Don't try to flush the cat down the toilet," "Don't use my lipstick to color the pattern in the wallpaper," and "Don't place a phone call to Calcutta, India."

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Soon it will be time for the annual teacher-parent conference. Many parents feel intimidated by their child's teacher. They sit at a conference, listening carefully to what the teacher says, but they are afraid to comment, contradict, or ask questions.

Usually, the parent will accept what the teacher has to say, nod a little, smile a lot, leave and go home. If the parent has heard something negative about the child, she goes home and rants and raves about this bad news. But, she doesn't have a clue about how to turn the situation around.