06.23.18 Emptying, cleaning, stocking and renting Dora!

Saturday, June 23, 2018 Our big girl Dora is carrying another family around the country this week and she’s happy to do it!  Over two weeks ago we moved out of Dora into the house we built in Amite three years ago.  Before that we worked almost constantly getting Dora spotless and packing up the mountain of things we carried with us in Dora.

When we started getting rental bookings for Dora we were so happy.  Seven weeks of rentals were booked while we were preparing to move into the house.  Then a wonderful family contacted us about renting Dora beginning last Sunday.  That one happened fast so we sped up all the work involved in moving everything out, cleaning Dora and getting all of the things we offered as “extras” to those who rent Dora.

First here Dora is getting ready to say goodbye to her mom and dad who moved into their house next door to her.

Every storage bin outside and every drawer, cabinet, storage place inside had to be emptied and cleaned.  As we moved things from Dora to the house and started to fill up the house we realized how very much we really carried with us in Dora!

The photos below start with Dora pretty much all torn apart inside and outside getting her ready to be rented. Yes I am courageous in showing you all our mess while moving.  I’ve sure we’ve all experienced this at some point in the moving process.  Ours was just all confined to a 400 sq. foot home!

From all that mess to a nice straightened up and pretty empty Dora!

   

I knew Dora was out there sad and lonely.  We visited often and even brought others to meet and get to know her.  The families who are going to rent her came one at a time to familiarize themselves with all that is Dora and to drive her so they are comfortable, and so we are comfortable with them driving her.  We are finding that some really great people want to travel our country with our big girl Dora.  They love her and I can’t wait till they each return after their trips to share with us how she does!

Here’s some pictures with Roy teaching them all about Dora’s many systems and features.

This is Jeff posing for me so we could see what he will look like while they are touring this beautiful country!

This is Jeff faking like he’s stuck in traffic! 

We decided to stock the RV with lots of items including cleaning items, first aid kit, coffee pot and filters, toaster, stainless eating utensils, pot holders, chip bag clips, cooking utensils and pans, induction cooktop as an alternative to the propane stove, pots and pans, sheets, pillows, bedspreads, quality paper plates, saucer and bowls, cups, coffee cups, medium outside table, six foldable chairs in bags, large outside mat, and several other things.  We’re expanding that soon to include a small ironing board, iron, towels, wash clothes, clothes hangers, and shampoo. We want our motor home to be the one renters choose and are learning that these things will help. 

Here’s Roy giving Dora a final complete washing before she leaves.

The moment our dear Dora left with her first rental family heading to Tennessee and Arkansas.  Great family of four hoping to create lasting memories together.  I can’t wait till they get home to hear all about it!

   Here’s Roy working hard getting the beams level again and the gravel leveled off while Dora’s off having fun.

Dora’s patio is empty now, everything moved to the house.  This week’s renters left their vehicles with us while they are off enjoying their time with Dora!

Well, Dora comes home this evening late.  We have a quick turn around before she leaves for 17 days with a sweet couple from about a hour from here.  After that she is rented until middle of August.

We are making slow small steps to making our house into our home.  This is the console we purchased that our tv sits on.  The TV will eventually be mounted on the wall but for now it’s happy on the console.  The wood color matches the color of our kitchen cabinets in the adjoining kitchen.

The guest bathroom is all dressed up and ready to be used!  She needs some wall decorations still but that will come!

Our fig trees have lots more figs on them than last year!  They should start ripening soon.

My rock painting took a two week break but I’m back at painting!  One of our bedrooms has become Roy’s computer room and the other has become my rock painting room and Madisyn’s room for when she comes to visit overnight.  I’ve started creating medium size rocks for our renters to help them remember their adventures with Dora.  I’ll post pictures of them after the renters receive them.

This is the view from my rock painting room!  I love it!  It’s way prettier than the picture shows.  When the wind is blowing and the trees move and water rripples across the pond it is such an amazing sight!!

Our master bedroom has nothing but a new king size mattress, box springs and frame but I sleep like a baby in that big bed!  We do have sheets but just not in this picture!

We just had a three day Dora rental book for September and one is pending for October.  Dora is renting out really well and we couldn’t be happier.  If any of ya’ll are interested in renting her please let us know!

Roy and I put many hours into creating an instruction manual for the renters to learn about all of Dora’s systems and features. Our dear friends, Cindy, Jacqueline and Donna helped proof read the manual and made many, many helpful recommendations.  Thanks ladies, you are all wonderful friends and we appreciate you!

Once those recommended changes were made in the manual it is now ready to give to the next renters.  We email a .pdf copy of the manual to renters once they pay and book their trip so they can learn about her at home ahead of time.

Chip, Misty and Madisyn came over after church for Father’s Day and were the first company in our new home!  I cooked a big pot of spaghetti sauce in my big (compared to Dora’s) kitchen and we enjoyed spending time together.  Our older son’s children called Roy to wish him Happy Father’s Day.  I loved hearing their small voices tell him they love him.

I’ve made a decision about having the partial knee replacement.  I also haven’t shared about Roy’s visit with Dr. Pulin Shah at Ochsner in New Orleans or about why I’m not going to see the neurologist in New Orleans that I thought I was going to see back in May.  Maybe next time I can write about all that!

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06.20.18 HEARING GOD IN THE ABUNDANCE OF HIS METHODS by Sam Williamson

Like Sam Williamson says below most believers long for – desperately long for – clearly hearing God’s voice. 

Oh how many times have I longed for verbally hearable words to come from God’s mouth to my ears.  As I’ve been reading through the Old Testament this year when God speaks out loud to someone I wish so deeply that I’d have one of those moments or more than one would happen in my life.  When making a major decision or minor ones I always ask God for guidance.  Through many of the ways Sam talks about below God does speak to me, just not verbally or with the loud clear voice I think we all long for.

When an unexpected person in my life shared with me long ago that when you keep feeling little “nudges” towards a decision or towards reaching out to someone, that is God. And time after time that has proven true.  Getting into the scriptures daily or more often opens my eyes to so much of God’s wisdom and the messages in the Bible are God’s way of letting us know what we should do.  I think that is why every time I read the Bible I see new wisdom in the same verse I got a different message from before.

I hope, if nothing else, my blog encourages you to learn more about my amazing, BIG, ever present God.  Read his Word, pray with him

(directly with him, He listens to us when we reach out to him directly), open your life to scriptural preaching (not the Joel Osteens of this world) from genuinely God lead pastors, associate yourself with a Godly person who you can go to for mentoring, counseling or  just to ask a question, attend a Bible Study or Sunday School class (same thing).

I encourage you to reach out to someone whose life displays God to find that Bible Study, or find the church where scripture is genuinely preached.  Your life will never be the same when you connect to God.  Not only will your life be

changed, your children will see God in your life and their lives will be changed.  The most important thing a parent can do for a child is to introduce them to God and what Jesus did for us, through your life and your Christian guidance.

I don’t know where all of this came from, just now.  Well yeah I do, God put it in my heart to share.  That’s the kind of thing He does.  If God can use a woman with dementia to share her faith when sometimes I can’t make a complete sentence, He can work in your life too.   I think Sam Williamson shares his message below very clearly.  Here it is!

 

HEARING GOD IN THE ABUNDANCE OF HIS METHODS by Sam Williamson – Beliefs of the Heart

Most believers long for—desperately long for—God’s voice, but most of us experience silence. Scripture says, “God speaks in many and diverse ways, but nobody notices” (Job 33:14). We miss his voice because he’s not a paint-by-number God. He speaks in ways we don’t expect.

Well-meaning people often mislead us when they describe their conversations with God. Their exchanges with God sound like dialogues written by master playwrights:

I asked God: What should I do with my life?
God answered: Are you willing to take a risk?
I replied: Yes, but I don’t know what to do.
God said: Move to Timbuktu.

When people tell us these stories, we think, I never hear God so clearly. Let me tell you a secret: neither do they. At least not most of the time. Their stories are usually shorthand summaries of hours spent reading Scripture, reflecting on his words, praying, getting Godly nudges, and recognizing God’s voice in circumstances or through friends.

Because God speaks through his infinitely imaginative, artistic mix of methods.

Methods

Let’s not put God in a box. If we limit his voice to a few methods—the scripted dialogue or heavenly visions—we will miss his voice when he paints his words with different brushstrokes. Below are seven common methods in which God speaks.

Responsive Resonance: God’s Spirit often resonates in our spirits as a response to external events. Perhaps it’s a burning in our heart or a sense that God has something significant for us in this moment: a Scripture passage leaps out at us in prayer, or we overhear a “chance” comment in the coffee shop. God moves speaks to our hearts to pay attention.

For example, “While waiting in Athens, Paul’s spirit was provoked within him when he saw that the city was full of idols” (Act 17:16). Now, think with me: there were idols every city Paul visited, but God stirred something in him in that moment in Athens.

Spontaneous Nudging: Sometimes God nudges our heart out of the blue: to pray for a friend or to act on an issue. It comes more as a sense on the heart than as a direct word.

I once got a sense to pray for a friend, so I phoned him. He had been let go from his job just hours before. We prayed on the phone and he thanked me for my concern. Only I hadn’t been concerned—I hadn’t even known—it was a concerned God who spontaneously nudged me.

Direct words: Sometimes God speaks direct words—usually just a sentence or two, or perhaps just a phrase. The first time I heard God speak, I had just become a ten year-old atheist. He simply said, “Sam, I am realy and you don’t understand.” For me, most direct words—if any—usually only come after I pursue God in prayer and reflection following a resonance or nudging.

Unbidden Memories: Sometimes God brings to mind a past event. I once remembered my twelve-year old self saying something harsh to a neighborhood kid. Weeks after remembering, I bumped into that kid, now a grown man. I reminded him of the story and repented. He too remembered and wept when I repented. (My eyes teared up as well. Just don’t tell anyone.)

Planted Images: God isn’t limited to nudges and words. Sometimes he even paints pictures.

Around 1915, my grandfather received a mental picture in which the letters KWANGSI were spelled in red letters across the sky. In the local library he discovered that the letters spelled a province of China (now spelled GuangXi). He spent the next two decades living in that very province, founding four churches. Should we tell God we won’t accept a vision?

Recalled Passages: God often brings unbidden passages to mind at just the right moment.

Once while talking with a man—and when I had zero wise words to say—a verse popped to mind: We comfort others with the comfort we’ve been given (a paraphrase of 2 Cor. 1:4). I told him of a comforting word God had recently given me. Nothing wise, just comfort. It answered an unspoken question of his. Since my Bible memorization is abysmal, it simply had to be God.

God Shaped Thoughts: Perhaps these are the hardest to recognize because our thoughts feel like our own. Yet how many times have you felt utterly empty, no words to pray, and then a brilliant (and obvious) thought streaks through your mind? C. S. Lewis expressed it like this:

Then, seeing me empty, you forsake
The listener’s role and through
My dumb lips breathe and into utterance wake
The thoughts I never knew.

God speaks in many and various ways. Let’s not box him in.

Sam

P. S. This article is an excerpt from my book Hearing God in Conversation. Its topics include:

Learning to recognize the sound of God’s voice
Hearing God in his silence
Hearing God for another person (and how to respond when someone gives us “a word”)
Hearing God in the ordinary
Hearing God for guidance

To read more of Sam Williamson’s writings check it out at http://beliefsoftheheart.com

 

Dora is out in the big world with new explorers this week.  I hope to write next time about getting Dora ready to travel with others and how the rental process is coming along!

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06.19.18 Trinity’s Senior Adult Luncheon

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 – Last Thursday our church, Trinity Baptist, had a Senior Adult’s Luncheon for us Seniors.

Several, many years ago Julie Lester and I put together Senior Adults Luncheons for the then senior ladies.  Julie did a cooking demonstration and cooked for them one year and Bro. Randy cooked for them the next time. We did crafts with the ladies each year and I think Julie and I enjoyed it every bit as much as they did. I remember that Debbie Berteau did a flower arrangement demonstration for the ladies and one of them got to take it home. At that time I think we had only a hand full of senior ladies. This is a photo from the year we made flowery bonnets with them. Ms. Olga Hubsch and Ms. Louise Traylor in the photo below were with us at this year’s luncheon.

Here is Bro. Bob obviously getting some advice from Ms. Louise Traylor who was in attendance at the luncheon long ago and this year’s luncheon!

My mama’s dear friend, pretty, young Ms. Olga Hubsch in her mid 90s looks younger than most of us in our 60s! She’s the pretty lady with the dark hair peeking around Bro.Bob and David Taylor! Mama is probably up in heaven just a smiling about she, Roy and I being in the senior group together!  She was one of the two who were in attendance at the long ago luncheons and at this recent one!

Now Roy and I are old enough to be included in the “Senior” age group. Since several of our age group friends were also there I guess we really are the seniors. My friend Leanna Traylor wrote on Facebook, “I know Johnnie Whisenhunt and I were way too young to be there, but thanks for letting us come chaperone!!!” Ya gotta love our wacky friends! Look at that smile on Johnnie’s face (the blonde), she’s a hoot!  Leanna had to monitor her the whole time!This luncheon was such a blessing, I can’t say that enough. A wonderful time of fellowship, entertainment and a beautiful devotion. All that on top of delicious food provided by the church and some of our ladies. Derek, our associate pastor, was the griller of delicious juicy chicken breasts. We had potatoes, green beans, rolls and amazingly delicious desserts provided by Linda Graves and Nancy Williamson. Banana pudding, pecan pie and Carrot Cake Triffle.

Nancy Williamson and Linda Graves, the ladies that made our delicious desserts. Thank you so much!

We had around 40 in attendance! I didn’t realize we had 40 senior adults at Trinity. Then I got to thinking about all those who weren’t there and we probably have 60 plus.

The program included beautiful and talented young Lily Brocato (Teddy and Wanda Forrest’s granddaughter) who sang accompanied by her Ukulele. We we sang along with her for a couple of songs, one of which was You Are My Sunshine! We’ve all enjoyed getting to hear Lily sing as she’s been growing up and love to hear her beautiful voice! Lily’s mama Jessica grew up with our sons Chip and his brother. Lily looks just like a young Jessica! So beautiful!

Bro Bob Adams was our interim pastor before Bro Avery became our pastor. He and Ms. Janice were with us a couple of years and we all came to love his preaching, his positive spirit. As a couple, they brought so much love and a very kind spirit to our church. They both spoke to us about growing older and growing stronger in our love for Christ. We all enjoyed it. We had grown to love Ms. Janice’s witty speaking style while they were with us. Having them both speak to us was such a treat! They were celebrating their 52nd wedding anniversary the day of the luncheon. When they celebrated their 50th anniversary they were with us as our pastor and his wife. There are a few special people in all our lives who speak to us deeply, this couple did that for us!

A little summary of what they shared with us is, “From the moment of our conception we become Time Travelers journeying through our lives at a constant rate! As with any journey the travel through time changes us! We often want the journey to stop and enjoy the moment we are in, but we do not have that luxury! This will be true until the Lord comes or we go through the door of death to a timeless eternity! The comfort in all of this is that Jesus enters Time to travel with us and then welcomes us into the timelessness of eternity!!” Do these folks have a way with words, yes they do! We all love you Bro. Bob and Ms. Janice!

Thanks to everyone who made this day special for all of us seniors. Derek and Koree Wall, Linda Graves and Nancy Williamson, Lilly Brocato and Teddy Forest, Bro. Bob and Ms. Janice Adams.

These last photos are random ones taken throughout the luncheon of our senior friends having fun talking and laughing and sometimes looking really serious. I think that’s what it looks like when old folks who don’t hear well any more are trying to listen to what their friends are saying! That’s all I could come up with for why some of the photos look so serious like this one below! They were laughing a moment later!

God is so good all the time! And all the time God is good! I am going to share this on facebook with some of the children of the seniors who may love to see their folks having fun!

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06.12.18 A long wild 12 days! Moving, Yard Sale, Furniture, Dora is lonely….. but not for long!!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 – I started writing this on June 1st but have been so busy I didn’t publish it. It’s gotten fairly long since I keep adding updates.

We’re in final count down mode toward moving out of Dora and I have to admit I’m a bit sad. We love our Dora and all of the years of adventures, happy times, and memories made.  Getting to see every one of the 48 contiguous states and so many of the beautiful landscapes in our country has been something I never thought we’d get to do.  God has been so good to us and allowed so much joy living on the road in our motor home.

We knew from the first time we entered Dora that she was the one for us.  Madisyn confirmed it was the one by saying she loved the shower!!!  That was her job when we were shopping, letting us know if she liked the shower!!  She was four then and is nine now.  I asked her when I was writing this if she remembered that and she did.  She did good! Everything we liked about other motor homes we saw was included in Dora.  We have been so comfortable living in her and truly thought we probably would live in her until one of us died.  Now that we’ve decided to move we are so happy and at peace with the decision, yet will miss our Dora.

I really hope she gets rented often so we can keep her and still take a trip or two each year.  We’ve already had several inquiries, so we’ll see.

We don’t have a bed for the house yet so we may be sleeping in Dora until we get one.  We’re in the country with no other house around our house so taking the short walk to the house and back won’t be a problem.  We checked out purchasing a queen size air mattress if we don’t find a bed soon.  Tomorrow, Saturday is the city wide yard sale in Ponchatoula.  We’ll be starting out when they all open at 8 am, looking for anything and everything we’ll need for our house.  What an adventure this is turning out to be.

Wow, since I originally wrote this and forgot to publish it so much has happened.  About renting Dora: One couple booked her for 17 days, a second is getting ready to book her after visiting us and Dora tomorrow.  Just had an inquiry from a young man who wants to rent here right in between the first too.  We are so thankful to Curtis Coleman, founder of RVillage, for sharing what he knew about how we could rent out our motor home.

At the Ponchatoula city wide yard sale we purchased a large area rug for the living room, floor mats for the kitchen, a microwave/convection oven which we think is just like the one in our motor home so we can replace the older one with this newer prettier one! Here’s Roy on our lawnmower moving the oven from the truck to the storage building.  It weighs a ton so he put his brain to good use and figured this one out.

Somewhere in the middle of us moving out of the motor home and into the house, Chip’s family came and gave us a lot of help including giving us some of their furniture that they recently replaced with new furniture.  Chip also cooked an amazing pot of crawfish corn soup which we all enjoyed while they were here and after they left!  Misty and Madisyn helped me and Chip helped his dad with heavy things and making two trips here and back to his house to pick up more furniture.  Misty gave us some wall decorations that will eventually make their way to just the right spot!

I wrote this paragraph on Facebook Tuesday so I copied it and pasted this here. We are a little settled in the house, still a lot to put away. It is truly amazing how much stuff we had in the motor home hidden in the storage compartments below and inside in the cabinets, drawers and under the bed! We kept canned vegetables in three places and when all put together we had 13 cans of green beans and almost as many of several other vegetables! Didn’t realize we had so much because it was stored all over! We’ve now shifted our focus to getting the motor home ready for rental. Roy scrubbed the roof Tuesday morning and I cleaned and polished all the wood, etc. in the bedroom. All the bedding is clean and put back on the bed. I started cleaning the refrigerator and just pooped out so I’m taking a resting break in the house. It’s so nice and cool in here, we’re loving it! We both slept all night last night without waking up once. Old folks always wake up once or twice during the night but we didn’t last night! I’m sleeping on a full size air mattress and Roy slept on the sofa. Roy’s got his computer room all set up. We got a laundry hamper (haven’t needed one of those for five years), couple of trash cans (didn’t need those in the motor home), a storage unit for his computer room (built in drawers in the motor home took care of that before now!) and some other things we needed. I hope we can sit back soon and enjoy the new house. The view of the pond from the house is so beautiful, I’ll have to share some pics of that next time.

We have Madisyn with us right now, Thursday.  She went shopping with us yesterday and we bought the following:

A 65 inch 4K Samsung television

A 75 inch long wood cabinet for the television to sit on.  It’s got lots of storage space too!

A king size bed frame, box springs and mattress.  We also bought a mattress pad and really pretty teal bed linens.  I slept like baby last night! I’m using the comforter from our oldest son’s bed when he was a teenager.  Looking for a king size bedspread now.

Chip loaned us his truck, again, so we could bring the furniture home.

The new television is so awesome, we are really enjoying it and love the wood cabinet it is on. The wood cabinet matches the color of our kitchen cabinets.

We cleaned out the motor home most of Thursday and Madisyn helped with that too!  We still have more cleaning that we want to do but the Dish Network technicians are in Dora changing out some of our satellite equipment for newer equipment  Roy spent at last two hours on the phone with Dish trying to get them to do what we need and finally they got it.  That’s a subject for a blog post when Roy feels like writing it. They are here working right now so I’m forced to go back to the house and crash on the sofa.  We have so much we want to get accomplished, but our mind wants us to do way more than our bodies can handle!

A very nice couple from not too far away came to see Dora yesterday about renting her.  We’ve talked on the phone with them first and enjoyed our visit with them yesterday. They just made her booking official!  Sunday, the couple that booked her to rent first is coming to see her in person and meet us.  We are looking forward to meeting them!

This rental thing is going so well we may change our thoughts on selling her for now.

It’s now Saturday. While all of this is good, it’s so stressful and we’re both feeling very worn out and punk today. It’s difficult to rest when you know there is so much that needs to be done.  When we moved from Dora to the house, things just got put somewhere, not necessarily where they belong.  I’m trying to tackle one or more areas each day until we feel settled.  Our closet is now in much better shape than it was yesterday.  We have two bathrooms now so figuring out what needs to go in which medicine cabinet and under the sink took a while.  We have these beautiful medicine cabinets in both bathrooms and they are now both full! There are no shower curtains in either bath.  I haven’t found the right ones yet but that will come soon!

One of my favorite things about the house is this Fleur de Lis in the stained concrete inside the front door!

I’m going to take a nap now and try to recover from feeling lousy!

Today is Tuesday, June 12th.  On Sunday afternoon we met with the first couple that booked her and the husband got to drive her around this area.  The smile on his face told us he loved it!

Monday we got our third two week reservation, booked and paid for!  That couple is coming Saturday for their walk through and test drive. Other than a few days next week and a couple of days between the bookings Dora is now booked until after school starts again here in Louisiana.

We did some shopping for additional things to provide for the renters in the kitchen, and new pillows for the beds and a bath mat.  We also bought for our house’s guest bathroom a bathroom shower curtain, liner, decorative hooks, bath towels, hand towels, wash clothes, bath mats bath mat. We’re making small steps towards making our house look like a home.

I just finished cleaning out the storage bins underneath the motor home.  Roy purchased a new stereo receiver for the motor home and is busy doing whatever it is that he does to make it all work together just like he wants it to.

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06.09.18 Who Is Jesus To You?

Who is Jesus to you? People today may give a variety of answers.

Some say He was a great philosopher, some say a great teacher, some say a prophet.

Others may say He was a great healer or the world’s greatest moral leader.

Jesus himself asked His disciples, “Who do men say that I am?” They answered, “John the Baptist; but some say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets.”

Then Jesus asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter was right when he answered, “You are the Christ” (Mark 8:29).

Jesus Christ is the Son of God who came to earth to save us from our sins. He’s my Savior and the Lord of my life.

“Who is Jesus to you?” is the most important question you’ll ever answer—where you will spend eternity depends on it. Have you trusted Him as your Savior?

The Bible says that one day every knee will bow and confess that He is Lord—so get ready.

Can you answer “Who is Jesus to you?” in the comments below?

by Franklin Graham, May 22, 2016

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06.08.18 Charles Krauthammer

Friday, June 8, 2018 – This is such sad news. At a time when so much of the media (except for FOX NEWS) twists and contorts the truth into something unrecognizable, when Charles Krauthammer spoke I listened and always believed what he said was the truth and that his opinions were fair and balanced. He’s been off the air dealing with his health issues for a year and I was really looking forward to his return, which they thought would be soon.
When I say he spoke the truth and his opinions were fair and balanced, I do not mean that he was always 100 percent in agreement with President Trump.  Sometimes he did and sometimes he didn’t.   I learned a lot from him about being neither a Republican or a Democrat and just wanting what’s best for America.  
Reading this today and hearing it on FOX News that he only has weeks to live will be such a huge loss to the media and to those who cherish the truth. I don’t remember praying for someone in the media before but I will be praying for Charles and his family.
 #FoxNews

Charles Krauthammer was on his way to greatness in medicine when he became a Pulitzer Prize-winning political analyst

Fox News star Charles Krauthammer reveals he has weeks to live in heartbreaking letter

Charles Krauthammer, the beloved and brilliant Fox News Channel personality who gave up a pioneering career in psychiatry to become a Pulitzer Prize-winning political analyst, on Friday revealed the heartbreaking news that he is in the final stages of a losing battle with cancer.

The 68-year-old’s incisive takes on politics of the day have been missing from Fox News Channel’s “Special Report” for nearly a year as he battled an abdominal tumor and subsequent complications, but colleagues and viewers alike had held out hope that he would return to the evening show he helped establish as must-viewing. But in an eloquent, yet unblinking letter to co-workers, friends and Fox News Channel viewers, Krauthammer disclosed that he has just weeks to live.

“I have been uncharacteristically silent these past ten months,” the letter began. “I had thought that silence would soon be coming to an end, but I’m afraid I must tell you now that fate has decided on a different course for me.”

“This is the final verdict. My fight is over.”

– Charles Krauthammer

READ CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER’S LETTER

Krauthammer, who graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1975 despite a first-year diving accident that left him a quadriplegic, explained that he had a malignant tumor removed from his abdomen last August. Although a series of setbacks left him in  the hospital in the ensuing months, he believed until recently that he was on the road to recovery.

“However, recent tests have revealed that the cancer has returned,” Krauthammer wrote. “There was no sign of it as recently as a month ago, which means it is aggressive and spreading rapidly. My doctors tell me their best estimate is that I have only a few weeks left to live. This is the final verdict. My fight is over.”

Fox News viewers will undoubtedly miss Krauthammer’s formidable intellect and ability to analyze politics and politicians with a cerebral wit and keen charm. As the dean of “The Fox News All Stars,” the panel of pundits who break down headlines and events nightly on Fox News Channel’s top-rated “Special Report,” Krauthammer could be counted on to make viewers think, question and even chuckle.

Krauthammer was on his way to greatness in the medical field when he veered first into policy, and then into journalism. After medical school, he became chief psychiatry resident at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he studied depression and published ground-breaking findings in top medical journals. But in 1978, he took a job in the Carter administration directing planning in psychiatric research and later served as a speech writer for Vice President Walter Mondale.

It was in the nation’s capital that Krauthammer trained his mind and talents on political analysis and began penning columns for The New Republic, Time magazine and finally the Washington Post. In 1985, he won journalism’s top prize for his weekly political commentary. In his sobering farewell, Krauthammer said he is “grateful to have played a small role in the conversations that have helped guide this extraordinary nation’s destiny.”

“I leave this life with no regrets,” Krauthammer wrote. “It was a wonderful life – full and complete with the great loves and great endeavors that make it worth living. I am sad to leave, but I leave with the knowledge that I lived the life that I intended.”

This is the full letter he wrote:

A note to readers

Opinion writer June 8 at 12:01 PM

I have been uncharacteristically silent these past ten months. I had thought that silence would soon be coming to an end, but I’m afraid I must tell you now that fate has decided on a different course for me.In August of last year, I underwent surgery to remove a cancerous tumor in my abdomen. That operation was thought to have been a success, but it caused a cascade of secondary complications — which I have been fighting in hospital ever since. It was a long and hard fight with many setbacks, but I was steadily, if slowly, overcoming each obstacle along the way and gradually making my way back to health.However, recent tests have revealed that the cancer has returned. There was no sign of it as recently as a month ago, which means it is aggressive and spreading rapidly. My doctors tell me their best estimate is that I have only a few weeks left to live. This is the final verdict. My fight is over.

I wish to thank my doctors and caregivers, whose efforts have been magnificent. My dear friends, who have given me a lifetime of memories and whose support has sustained me through these difficult months. And all of my partners at The Washington Post, Fox News, and Crown Publishing.

Lastly, I thank my colleagues, my readers, and my viewers, who have made my career possible and given consequence to my life’s work. I believe that the pursuit of truth and right ideas through honest debate and rigorous argument is a noble undertaking. I am grateful to have played a small role in the conversations that have helped guide this extraordinary nation’s destiny.

I leave this life with no regrets. It was a wonderful life — full and complete with the great loves and great endeavors that make it worth living. I am sad to leave, but I leave with the knowledge that I lived the life that I intended.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

 

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05.31.18 Purpose Driven Life – What On Earth Am I Here For?

Thursday, May 31, 2018 – Rick Warren wrote the book, Purpose Driven Life, several years ago.  I’ve read it a few times starting when our church went through a program called 40 Days of Purpose.  I think that’s what it was called.  My brother in law use to read it through every year.  I have it on my Kindle and read a chapter every now and then when I need some spiritual grounding.

Anyway,  I just came across this list on my computer.  It’s the title of each of the chapters in the book.  They are very thought provoking chapter titles, as was the whole book.  If you’ve read the book, this list will mean something special to you.  If you haven’t read it, the list will give you an idea of what the book is about.  Either way, I hope you’ll spend sometime reading the list and thinking about it, perhaps praying about it!

It’s not about me.

I am not an accident.

Living on purposes is the path to peace.

There is more to life than just here and now.

Life is a test and a trust.

Life on earth is a temporary assignment.

This world is not my home.

It’s all for Him.

I was planned for God’s pleasure.

The smile of God is the goal of my life.

The heart of worship is surrender.

God wants to be my best friend.

I’m as close to God as I choose to be.

God wants all of me.

God is real, no matter how I feel.

I was formed for God’s family.

Life is all about love.

I am called to belong, not just believe.

Life is meant to be shared.

I need others in my life.

Community requires commitment.

Relationships are always worth restoring.

It is my responsibility to protect the unity of my church.

I was created to become like Christ.

It is never too late to start growing.

The truth transforms me.

God has a purpose behind every problem.

Every temptation is an opportunity to do good.

There is always a way out.

There are no shortcuts to maturity.

I was put on earth to make a contribution.

Service is not optional.

I was shaped for serving God.

Nobody else can be me.

I serve God by serving others.

To be a servant I must think like a servant.

God works best when I admit my weakness.

I was made for a mission.

God wants to say something to the world through me.

The Great Commission is my commission.

Blessed are the balanced, they shall outlast everyone.

Living with purpose is the only way to really live.

If this, in any way, makes you want to read the book, I highly recommend it (obviously!).  The kindle edition on Amazon is only 99 cents.  Here is a link to that and the hard back version. https://www.amazon.com/Purpose-Driven-Life-Rick-Warren/dp/0310205719/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1527808957&sr=8-1&keywords=the+purpose+driven+life+hardcover

There is a newer version, which I’ve also read. I remember not liking it as much as the original.  The link above is to the original with the brownish/burgundy cover.

 

Roy and I are slowly but surely making progress towards moving which is going to be Monday the 4th.  Several cabinets and drawers inside and outside have been cleared out and cleaned out.  We are living with small boxes all over Dora’s floors. Roy’s moved several containers from under Dora to the storage building we have out back.

I spent yesterday and today pulling weeds from the flower gardens and planting grass in spots that need it. I’ll be moving some of the plants in our current garden to around the house when the weather gets cooler again.  You may remember that most of what we have came with us from our home on Wardline Road in Hammond.  Everything is fairly big now and has gotten quite crowded so moving some will be a good thing.

We’ve had three inquiries yesterday and today from people who want to rent Dora.  They all came through RVShares.com.  A couple of our friends are interested as well.  We’ll be spending most of next week finishing getting Dora emptied out and spit shined!!! Bring it on renters!!

Saturday there is a city wide yard sale in Ponchatoula.  We’ll be there when it starts at 8:00 am.  Since we’re trying to furnish a house it should be an interesting day of shopping.  We are very thankful to our son Chip and his wonderful wife Misty for giving us their sofa, coffee table and television when they bought new ones.  They’ve even stored them (filling up) their garage until we can get them next Wednesday.

Chip called early this morning (well it was 9 am so I wasn’t up yet) and we had a delightful conversation.  He’s going to cook us some crawfish corn soup and has some other things to let us have for our new house!  That call made my day!  I love you Chip for how you show your love for us!

Ya’ll have a great day!

 

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05.25.18 – Please share!! Dora is for rent starting June 10th!

Friday, May 25, 2018 – Please feel free to share.  We ask (plead and beg!!) that you do share this blog post with your friends on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

As we move towards moving into our house in Amite on the 4th we are making plans to hopefully rent out our motor home.  We wrote a little bit about it before but this is hopefully all the information, all in one place.

I am working on a YouTube slideshow of photos and information about Dora, our pretty girl.  I’ll post it here when it’s ready. For now, here’s a link to a Facebook album with all of those photos in it.

Dora’s Photo Album

We have registered Dora with the twowebsite that I wrote about recently. Links to the two companies are below:

Outdoorsy.com listing

RVshare.com listing

If you don’t feel like clicking on any of the links above, here’s most of the information on the websites !

Dora is a 2005 Fleetwood Excursion 39S and is 39.5 feet long, with three slide outs – two in the living room, kitchen and dinette and the third in the bedroom.  Automatic Transmission, Cruise Control, Power Steering are features that make driving Dora a dream!

She’s available beginning June 10th to rent for vacation, weekend event, to see if you’d like to live in one, and any number of other reasons.

RATES:

  • 195.00 / nightly
  • 1300.00 / weekly
  • 5500.00 / monthly
  • Minimum Nights: 3 Nights
  • Refundable damage deposit: $1000.00
  • 250 miles per night included with rental
    • Excess mileage: $0.32 per mile
  • 4 hours per night generator usage included with rental for fr
    • Excess generator usage: $5.00/hour
  • Cleaning Fee if not returned in same clean condition that it was in when picked up: $150.00
  • Additional Driver: $25.00
  • Insurance: approximately $29.95 per day (sales tax not included) (each website has a different insurance rate)
  • Roadside Assistance available for purchase on each website.

DESCRIPTION:

7 days notice is required before start date of rental. Minimum rental is 3 days.

-Luxury abounds in this beautiful motor home. This coach is powered by a 350 H.P. Caterpillar Diesel Engine that delivers plenty of power; whether you want to drive your family to Disney or cruise up California’s beautiful coastline Hwy 1 to San Francisco. The Spartan Chassis with an air ride suspension will give you a very stable and smooth ride. The Caterpillar Engine brake allows you to stop with confidence.

-Driving is enjoyable with oversized heated powered ultra-leather seats. Tilt and telescoping steering wheel let you find ‘your own’ exact fit while the oversize windshield lets you enjoy a panoramic view of the scenery ahead while the backup camera allows you to see directly behind you. Your passenger will be relaxed in a luxurious reclining heated ultra-leather seat with power foot rest.

-Setting up camp is simple with automatic hydraulic jacks that level the motor home with the touch of a single button. You can open up the living area with the touch of another button. You’ll be amazed of its huge size as the walls extend out. In the master bedroom, touch another button and watch the queen size sleep number bed slide out giving you even more room there. Combined with the 84′ ceiling height you’ll feel like you’re in the Superdome!

-The ultra-leather couch folds out into a queen size bed while the adjacent sofa converts into a Double sofa J-Bed. Enjoy your favorite movie or program on the 40′ H.D. TV with your choice of Antenna, Dish Hopper DVR Satellite, Cable or Blu-Ray/DVD with surround sound that will make you feel like you’re part of the action. You may choose a movie from our library or bring your own.

-The kitchen area is a Chefs’ delight! It’s equipped with a Convection microwave, a 3 burner gas stove, an oven, deep double sinks, side by side refrigerator/freezer with ice maker, large Corian counter tops, and plenty of cabinets and drawers!

-Without starting the generator, the 2000-watt inverter allows your family to watch a movie from any one of the three TV’s onboard. You can also use the microwave, a few outlets, brew a cup of coffee.

-If full power is needed at a remote campsite the 7500-watt Onan quiet diesel generator will light up the whole coach including both thermostat controlled air conditioners.

-Do a load of laundry with the built in washer/dryer.

-There is a huge closet in the bedroom to hang up all your clothes combined with all the cabinet space and basement compartments there is ample room to bring lots of your favorite things.

-If the weather is right, head outside and set up your lounge chair, swivel the outside TV in your direction, and relax your cares away. If the sun gets too hot, or the rain starts to come down, push another button and watch as the awning automatically extends overhead.

She’s available beginning June 10th to rent for vacation, weekend event, to see if you’d like to live in one, and any number of other reasons.

Minimum driver’s age: 25 years

No Smoking inside

No Pets

INDOOR AMENITIES INCLUDE:

In dash Air Conditioner
2 Rooftop Air Conditioners
Garmin RV specific GPS
Heater
Dining Table with extension and two extra chairs
Convection/Microwave
Stove/Range
Refrigerator
Kitchen Sink
Inside Shower
Outside Shower
Toilet/Sink
Satellite
Awning
Generator
Tow Hitch
Color Backup Camera
Extra Storage
Leveling Jacks
Washer/Dryer
TV/DVD
DVD/Blue Ray Player
Radio
Inverter

WHAT’S GOODIES ARE INCLUDED WITH DORA AT NO EXTRA COST!!

OUTSIDE
• Medium size outside table
• 6 foldable outside chairs in bags
• 9’ X12’ Outdoor Mat with 4 hold-down stakes
KITCHEN
• Toaster
• Coffee pot and filters
• Hand held can opener
• Quality dinner size paper plates, smaller paper plates and bowls
• Stainless forks, knives and spoons
• Plastic Solo Cups
• Coffee cups
• Large and small pots and skillet
• Cooking utensils including two spatulas, large spoon, slotted spoon, 2 chopping/slicing knives, basting brush, ice scream scoop, spaghetti scooper, measuring cups, measuring spoons
• 2 cake pans
• 1 cookie sheet
• Several Dishtowels
• Pot Holders
• Dish drying rack
• Dish drying mat
• Roll of Paper towels and Paper towel holder
• Two plastic storage containers for left overs
• Sandwich size Glad ziplock bags
• Quart size Glad ziplock bags
• Aluminum foil
• Saran wrap
• Salt and Pepper Shakers, onion flakes, garlic seasoning
• First Aid Kit
• 2 new sponges
• Plastic gloves
• Interior cleaning products
• Two dishwashing liquid dispensers are full
BATHROOM AND SHOWER
• Several rolls of Toilet paper stored under bathroom sink
• Bath mat
• Six bath towels and wash clothes, two hand towels – effective August 2018
• Dispenser filled with shampoo
BEDROOM AND SOFA SLEEPERS
• Bed linens and bedspread for one queen size bed and one full size sofa bed provided.
• Blanket provided for the Double J-Bed
• Six pillows with pillow cases
• Splendide washing machine detergent
DINING AREA
• To expand the seating area to accommodate 6 people there are 2 wooden folding chairs, table extension located in closet
LIVING AREA
• Folding coffee table located in closet
MISCELLANEOUS
• Small ironing board and iron
• Coat Hangers
• Bike Rack for 2 bikes available upon request
• Vacuum hose and accessories located under bed for use with Built-in vacuum
OUTSIDE HARDWARE
• Optional outside entry step ladder
• 3 X10’ Rhino Extreme sewer hoses
• 1 X 5’ Rhino Extreme sewer hose
• 1 X10’ red sewer hose
• 1 Dominator, 20′ Extension sewer hose
• All sewer adaptors necessary to connect to campground
• Sewer Hose Supports – 2 solid and 1 expandable
• 2 X 25’ Fresh Water hoses and high flow water pressure regulator
• 30 amp male to 50 amp female power cord adaptor
• 4 jack leveling pads if needed
• Spare Tire

Optional outside entry step ladder
Spare Tire

The cancellation fees changes from website to website but is generally: 50% refund up to 14 days before pickup, then no refund after that

The listings are not 100 percent complete but they are pretty close. The per day, per week and per month rental rates have been lowered from their original prices.  We hope this will attract renters so we can see if this is worth doing.

If this doesn’t prove to be worth it, Dora will be for sale at $85,000 which is a steal, she even has all new Michelin tires!!

Roy and I will be moving into the house that we built three years ago in Amite, on June 4th.  We will then be working hard to have Dora spotless and ready to rent by June 10th. It may seem like it shouldn’t take much to move from Dora into the house.  However, we have several large storage areas underneath Dora in what we call the basement.  They are all pretty much full of things we don’t use everyday but have needed as we travel.  Every cabinet and drawer in the motor home has to be cleared out also.  The closet is full of clothes and under our bed is a huge storage place that is full.

I’ve started going through each cabinet and drawer to see what can be taken out now and packed so that the “big” move is a little easier. We’re only moving things across our front yard so that helps!

The biggest undertaking is writing a Renter’s Manual for those who “we hope” rent our motor home!   There’s a lot to share with a renter, especially to those who have never driven one of these big girls before.  We’ve made great progress on this and my goal is to be finished with it this weekend.  We’ll send it to Kteam Printing in Hammond and have it made into a spiral bound book.  We also plan to save it as a .pdf file and email it to the renters before they pick Dora up so they are familiar with things ahead of time.

You may have noticed that advertisements are back on our blog posts.  I actually earn money from these things anytime someone clicks on one and checks out the advertised product.  It’s not going to make us rich but it might take us out to dinner once a month so they are back.  I truly hope it is not too distracting and that ya’ll are okay with it.  If something does catch your eye, feel free to click.  It won’t take you somewhere terrible, it’s all reputable businesses.

Ya’ll come back now, ya; hear!Image result for motor home scripture quote

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05.23.18 The Gaze of His Eye, by Kelly Balarie

I will instruct you and show you the way to go; with my eye on you, I will give counsel. Psalm 32:8

The Gaze of His Eye

Image may contain: one or more people and indoor

I stood in the center of a kitchen that hadn’t seen the likes of a mop for weeks. Crumbs scattered on the floor, goo stuck to the table, and something mysterious clung to the countertops. I felt like I might explode. I can’t do it all! I thought.

The reality of my life — the countless needs and the never-ending feeling that life won’t stop — made me wonder: God, do You have more for me than nights of kitchen cleaning and mornings of kid-caretaking?

My head spun. I had to fix my emotions. I needed God to answer. I prayed my heart out, as if my all-good effort would bring good results. At home, it usually does. No clean underwear? I’ll do a load of laundry! Hungry? I’ll make dinner! Sick? Let’s get you to the doctor.

I waited. Nothing. I dropped my arms, wondering: Where are You, God? Letting my eyes relax, I found myself hazing out the window, into the density of the night. There, a blur in the distance took shape.

The moon, I could see it. Strangely, it wasn’t perfectly rounded, but imperfectly formed — shaped like an eye. All I could think was: God, You see me. You know where I am going. You have a plan for me in my darkness. You have a way for me, in my wilderness, even when I can’t see. And in all this, I can rest.

When the frantic pace of everyday life catches up with us, let’s remember to step outside at night and enjoy the beauty of the nighttime landscape that God spoke into existence. He sees us. He really does!

~ written by Kelly Balarie on Peaceful Moments for Women

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

 

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