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Is There a Bully in Your Life?

May 29th, 2013 by stephanie

As we watched the TV show together while munching on pita chips and hummus, my friend and I kept hearing this one character on the show complaining about the fact she was continually being “bullied”.
Ok, I thought to myself. How do you handle a bully?

To be honest, I was recalling a particular person I knew that in truth is a bully-type of person. During one particular evening, I was a bit forward and held my ground when this particular person came at me with intent to harm. In my opinion, I think they were surprised by my firm response. And I hope I sent a clear message. One that said: You don’t need to be rude and you need to check your facts before you bite! Those two things seem to be a common thread with a bully. 1) They love to intimidate and get in your face, and 2) They rarely search for, let alone get, the facts straight. They just like to punch!

There’s a great true story from New York City that might help you deal with the current bully in your life.

Back in the 1970s, crime had gotten so out of hand in The Big Apple, that people actually began posting “No Radio” signs on their dashboards to deter thieves from breaking car windows and stealing them. Mayor Rudy Giuliani and his Commissioner finally decided one day that they’d had enough. That’s when they discovered the “Broken Windows” theory.

The Broken Windows Theory simply states that if a building has a broken window, that doesn’t get fixed, the message is sent that no one cares. Vandals don’t see any consequences, so they continue to destroy.

However, once the broken window is fixed, it sends a clear message that someone does care and that people are watching. And that deters crime. Using the Broken Windows theory, Giuliani and Bratton transformed NYC by treating minor crimes (vandalism, prostitution, and loitering) like broken windows. Instead of tolerating these issues they instituted a “zero tolerance” policy towards them. As criminals caught on, crime lessened. Citizens and tourists felt safer walking the streets and taking the subway and in turn took more responsibility for their own neighborhoods by getting involved.

So, the moral of the story is, let the bully know that they do not have the authority or the permission to mess with your part of the world or change your way of life. That’s the power they want and they’re determined to get it. If you and I sit back, and let the weeds grow, the vandals of our lives will continue to come. But if we stand up, take action and keep order, then… our part of the world can become a much better and safer place.

Just my thoughts. And, a bit from Proverbs too.
S.

Traditional Memorial Day: Did You Know?

May 24th, 2013 by stephanie

Did you know that this coming Monday used to be called Decoration Day? Few of us are aware of that nowadays, but that’s only because few of us have ever been told.
🙂
It may come as a surprise to some, however, Memorial Day used to be a special time set aside for Americans to visit the cemeteries. While there, they would decorate the graves of those who had given their lives in service to this country. (Love it!)

My grandmother and my mother shared that information with me when I was a little girl, so I am fortunate to have known that historic tidbit. But there’s a reason for that too.

You see, Memorial Day used to be celebrated only on May 30, and as that is my date of birth, each year my grandmother or mother would remind me of the holiday and it’s meaning. Which of course I loved. They would always say, “You were born on Traditional Memorial Day.” Apparently, as the story goes, the powers that be decided Memorial Day should officially become the last Monday in May so that federal folks could have a 3-day holiday. The rest of us have come to enjoy it too! And now, all of us know the rest of the story (Paul Harvey).

For you trivia buffs, here more.

Just my thoughts, as I enjoy, like you hopefully, this long three day weekend.
Stephanie

Ecclesiastes 3:8 ESV
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.

Is Your Bark As Big As Your Bite?

May 13th, 2013 by stephanie

While scanning the morning headlines, one particular bit of news immediately had me doing a double take. Did I really see that right? Chihuahua takes on Cougar…and wins?

Sure enough, I clicked on the link, and the story began to unfold.

Apparently a pet owner that had two of what I refer to as “taco dogs” heard a horrendous cry coming from one of her pooches in the dead of night. As she raced to determine the situation, she peeked out her window only to see one of her Chihuahuas pinned to the ground by a cougar.

Her second pup, unseen by the pouncing predator suddenly emerged with a frightful attack – of barks! Not a bite. Not a scratch. But they worked all the same. The sound was big enough and scary enough that the cougar took flight off into the night.

It reminds me of the story of David and Goliath. A young teen-ager stepped out into the front of a timid and frightened Israeli army that had been taunted by a nine foot giant for 40 days. With nothing more than a sling shot and five stones, the boy David, the future king of Israel, took the giant on…and won! ( I Samuel 17)

If you are facing some sort of giant in your life today, please know, you too have the same access to the power needed to help you shoo it off regardless of the odds. You can win this. It’s just that it’s up to you. Step out. Growl. Swing your stones. Whatever you need to do. But take on the giant. And go for the win!

You never know where you just might end up.

Just my thoughts.

S.

Remembering Other Moms on Mother’s Day.

May 8th, 2013 by stephanie

When I finished the book Founding Mothers by Cokie Roberts, I remember saying, “Wow, everyone should know these stories!” What struck me the most was the amazing mothers, not only of our country but of ordinary citizens as well. Moms contribute more to our society than people will ever most likely truly understand or realize.
But on a lighter note, some of these gals were just plain clever, witty and even a bit daring.

Did you know…

Martha Washington had a Tom Cat she named “Hamilton”, yes, after Alexander Hamilton. And for good reason! That guy was married, but “got around” to be sure, so she said. 🙂

Nathaniel Green’s wife, after his death, lived openly and traveled with her children’s tutor. It was scandalous in the least! What most people don’t know is that she helped Eli Whitney invent the Cotton Gin. It was at her plantation when that invention was birthed.

Eliza Pinkney, at the age of 16, was left to run the three family plantations. And in so doing planted a forest that she hoped one day would be used for her new nation’s future naval ships! But there’s more, she was responsible for envisioning and bringing about the American Indigo industry.

The book contains many more stories, but I think you can see, moms come is all styles, shapes and sizes. Share some stories about your mom with your friends this weekend. You just might be surprised what you unearth.images
🙂
Just my thoughts,
S.

The Great Flood. A Great Reminder.

May 2nd, 2013 by stephanie

For those of you that watch the Weather Channel, you were quite aware, no matter what part of the country you lived in at the time, that on May 1, 2010, Nashville recieved 3 months of rain in a 48 hour period. DownTown Flood

I will never forget turning on the TV that Sunday afternoon, only to see the subdivision where one of my single gal friends lives. All one could see was the roof tops of her condominiums surrounded by water! Little red islands in a sea of brown. I was horrified. I kept flipping the channels while saying out loud, “This can’t be right.” I placed a few frantic calls to her — but no answer.

When I did finally hear from her the next day, the worst was confirmed. She had fled her condo. Her car was a complete loss, and so was the entire first floor of her home. I was in shock. “It happened so fast!” were the words one heard repeatedly all over Nashville.

Three years later, we are still here. And those of us that lived through it can say, we survived. Those of us in Nashville at the time are now on the other end of the experience. Yes. It was tough. But we made it. And we are OK.

There are times when you think it’s the end of the world. It’s over. Life as you knew it. Perhaps, let the reminder of our flood be an encouragement to you. You will get to the other side of whatever waters you are currently wading through. It just takes time.

Just my thoughts,
S.

Happy May Day! Did you know?

May 1st, 2013 by stephanie

I wonder how many of you were aware that the first day of May used to be called “May Day”. I asked my grandmother to recall what she could about this particular long lost special day.

“We use to make up little baskets of flowers and put them on people’s porches then run.” This is what she shared with me while recalling the memories of yesteryear. “It was fun when they would open the door and see their flowers but they never knew who brought them. I don’t think they do that anymore.”

She’s right, I don’t think I have ever found a bouquet of flowers on my doorstep at any point in my life. Well, on May 1st, at least. “If you knew another elderly person besides your grandmother, “she chided, “I bet they would remember.”

If you have someone over the age of 75 in your life, ask them what they know about May Day. I would love to hear what stories you learn.

Happy May Day to you!

Just my thoughts.

S.

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