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RED MARBLES

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily appraising a basket of freshly picked green peas..

I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.

‘Hello Barry, how are you today?’

‘H’lo , Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus’ admirin’ them peas. They sure look good.’

‘They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?’

‘Fine. Gittin’ stronger alla’ time.’

‘Good. Anything I can help you with?’

‘No, Sir. Jus’ admirin’ them peas.’

‘Would you like to take some home ?’ asked Mr.. Miller.

‘No, Sir. Got nuthin’ to pay for ’em with..’

‘Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?’

‘All I got’s my prize marble here.’

‘Is that right? Let me see it’ said Miller.

‘Here ’tis. She’s a dandy.’

‘I can see that.. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home ?’ the store owner asked.

‘Not zackley but almost….’

‘Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble’, Mr. Miller told the boy.

‘Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.’

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me. With a smile she said, ‘There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever. When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.’

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.

Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died.

They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts….all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband’s casket. Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her, and moved on to the casket.

Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one; each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband’s bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket.

‘Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about. They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim ‘traded’ them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size…..they came to pay their debt.’

‘We’ve never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,’ she confided, ‘but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho.’

With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.

The Moral: We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds.. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath…..

Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~ A fresh pot of coffee you didn’t make yourself…An unexpected phone call from an old friend…Green stoplights on your way to work….The fastest line at the grocery store…A good sing-along song on the radio….Your keys found right where you left them.

Send this to the people you’ll never forget.. I just Did….

If you don’t send it to anyone, it means you are in way too much of a hurry to even notice the ordinary miracles when they occur.

IT’S NOT WHAT YOU GATHER, BUT WHAT YOU SCATTER THAT TELLS WHAT KIND OF LIFE YOU HAVE LIVED.

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The Opinion that Matters

E.VirGinia Johnson “Genii”

When you feel self-conscious and worry about how others perceive your actions, choices, and opinions. Judgments or criticisms made by others and directed at you could affect you deeply, causing you to feel distressed and question the validity of your decisions. To quell your oversensitivity and regain faith in your abilities, try to make your inner voice louder than the critical voices around you. You may find that you can easily drown out negative or hurtful comments or no longer feel driven to react to them. You will likely feel a growing sense of self-assurance as you disregard other peoples€™s judgments. If you have difficulty ignoring upsetting comments today, try to remember that most peoples€™s observations have more to do with how they see themselves rather than with who you really are.

Learning to let criticisms or judgments directed at you roll off of your back can help you maintain a strong sense of confidence. People say what they do for many reasons and taking what they say personally is often an exercise in making assumptions. Because you will seldom know what motivates others, taking what they say with a grain of salt allows you to construct your own opinions regarding your worth and abilities. No one can have the power to quell your belief in yourself unless you give them that authority. Disregard criticism today, and you will feel happier and more confident.

God Bless, One Love, Jah Guide…….

www.ettaenterprizes.com

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The Alphabet – Your day’s a-comin

Does this apply to you?

Jessen Kyles

The Old Alphabet: A as in apple. B as in boat.

That used to be right, but now it won’t float!

Now, A’s for arthritis,

B’s for bad back,

C’s for chest pains, perhaps car-di-ac.

D is for dental decay and decline,

E is for eyesight, you can barely read the top line!

F is for fluid retention,

G is for gas, which I shouldn’t have mentioned.

H is for high blood pressure, I’d rather it be low.

I is for incisions, with scars you can show.

J is for joints, out of socket or won’t mend.

K is for knees that make noises when they bend.

L’s for libido, let’s not talk about this.

M is for memory, some I really miss.

N is for neuralgia, sore nerves you can feel

O is for osteo, bones that crack and don’t heal

P is for prescriptions, some have quite a few.

Just give me a pill and I’ll be good as new!

Q is for queasy, is it fatal or flu?

R is for reflux, one meal turns to two.

S is for sleepless nights, counting my fears,

T is for Tinnitus; the bells in your ears!

U is for urinary; troubles with flow;

V is for vertigo, that’s ‘dizzy,’ you know.

W is for worry, now what’s going ’round?

X is for X ray, and what might be found.

Y is for years, it’s been a long time.

Z is for zest….but it’s all in my mind!

I’ve survived all the symptoms, my body’s fully deployed.

I’m keeping fourteen doctors and 2 dentists fully employed!

IF YOU’RE NOT AS OLD AS ME….LAUGH IT OFF….BUT YOUR DAY’S A-COMIN’!

HAVE A GREAT DAY!

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I have heard TAPS it seems forever

I have heard TAPS it seems forever but I only knew the words to the first verse. As a solder we stopped whatever we were doing, faced the nearest flag and stood at attention and if you could see the flag we saluted and held the salute till Taps was over

I never knew … DID YOU?

If any of you have ever been to a military funeral in which taps was played; this brings out a new meaning of it.

We in the United States have all heard the haunting song, ‘Taps…’

But, do you know the story behind the song?

Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Elli was with his men near Harrison’s Landing in Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.

During the night, Captain Elli heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment.

When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.

The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out… Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.

The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted.

The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral.

The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate.

But, out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician.

The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth’s uniform.

This wish was granted.

The haunting melody, we now know as ‘Taps’ used at military funerals was born.

The words are:

Day is done.

Gone the sun.

From the lakes

From the hills.

From the sky.

All is well.

Safely rest.

God is nigh.

Fading light.

Dims the sight.

And a star.

Gems the sky.

Gleaming bright.

From afar.

Drawing nigh.

Falls the night.

Thanks and praise.

For our days.

Neath the sun

Neath the stars.

Neath the sky

As we go.

This we know.

God is nigh

I have never seen all the words to the song until now. I didn’t even know there was more than one verse. I also never knew the story behind the song and I didn’t know if you had either so I thought I’d pass it along.

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I bet You Cheat??

The Banana Test

There is a very, very tall coconut tree and there are 4 animals,

A Lion

A Chimp

A Giraffe

…..AND…

A Squirrel

They decide to compete to see who is the fastest to get a banana off the tree.

Who do you guess will win?

Your answer will reflect your personality.

So think carefully . . ..

Try and answer within 30 seconds. Got your answer?

Now scroll down to see the analysis.

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:

:

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:

:

:

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If your answer is:

Lion = you’re dull.

Chimpanzee = you’re dense.

Giraffe = you’re a complete moron.

Squirrel = you’re hopeless.

A COCONUT TREE DOESN’T HAVE BANANAS.

Obviously you’re stressed and overworked.

You should take some time off and relax

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45 lessons life taught me

Written by Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio – “To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me it is the most-requested column I’ve ever written.”

1. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.

3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

4. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.

5. Pay off your credit cards every month.

6. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

7. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone.

8. It’s OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.

10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

11. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present.

12. It’s OK to let your children see you cry.

13. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.

15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don’t worry; God never blinks.

16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

17. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful, or joyful.

18. Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger.

19. it’s never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.

20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer.

21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, and wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.

22. Over prepare, and then go with the flow.

23. Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.

24. The most important sex organ is the brain.

25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ‘In five years, will this matter?’

27. Always choose life.

28. Forgive everyone everything.

29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.

31. However good or bad a situation is it will change.

32. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

33. Believe in miracles.

34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn’t do.

35. Don’t audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.

36. Growing old beats the alternative dying young.

37. Your children get only one childhood.

38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.

41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

42. The best is yet to come.

43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

44. Yield.

45. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.

Its estimated 93% won’t forward this. If you are one of the 7% who will, forward this with the title “7%”…I’m in the 7%.

Friends are the family that we choose for ourselves

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ONLY A MAN WOULD ATTEMPT THIS

Just try reading this without laughing till you cry!!!

Pocket Tazer Stun Gun, a great gift for the wife. A guy who purchased his lovely wife a pocket Tazer for their anniversary submitted this:

Last weekend I saw something at Larry’s Pistol & Pawn Shop that sparked my interest. The occasion was our 15th anniversary and I was looking for a little something extra for my wife Julie. What I came across was a 100,000-volt, pocket/purse- sized tazer. The effects of the tazer were supposed to be short lived, with no long-term adverse affect on your assailant, allowing her adequate time to retreat to safety….

WAY TOO COOL! Long story short, I bought the device and brought it home. I loaded two AAA batteries in the darn thing and pushed the button. Nothing! I was disappointed. I learned, however, that if I pushed the button and pressed it against a metal surface at the same time; I’d get the blue arc of electricity darting back and forth between the prongs.

AWESOME!!!

Unfortunately, I have yet to explain to Julie what that burn spot is on the face of her microwave.

Okay, so I was home alone with this new toy, thinking to myself that it couldn’t be all that bad with only two triple-A batteries, right? There I sat in my recliner, my cat Gracie looking on intently (trusting little soul) while I was reading the directions and thinking that I really needed to try this thing out on a flesh & blood moving target. I must admit I thought about zapping Gracie (for a fraction of a second) and thought better of it. She is such a sweet cat. But, if I was going to give this thing to my wife to protect herself against a mugger, I did want some assurance that it would work as advertised.. Am I wrong?

So, there I sat in a pair of shorts and a tank top with my reading glasses perched delicately on the bridge of my nose, directions in one hand, and tazer in another. The directions said that a one-second burst would shock and disorient your assailant; a two-second burst was supposed to cause muscle spasms and a major loss of bodily control; a three-second burst would purportedly make your assailant flop on the ground like a fish out of water. Any burst longer than three seconds would be wasting the batteries.

All the while I’m looking at this little device measuring about 5″ long, less than 3/4 inch in circumference; pretty cute really and (loaded with two itsy, bitsy triple-A batteries) thinking to myself, ‘no possible way!’ What happened next is almost beyond description, but I’ll do my best..

I’m sitting there alone, Gracie looking on with her head cocked to one side as to say, ‘don’t do it dip-****,’ reasoning that a one second burst from such a tiny little ole thing couldn’t hurt all that bad. I decided to give myself a one second burst just for heck of it. I touched the prongs to my naked thigh, pushed the button, and . ….

HOLY MOTHER OF GOD . .. WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION . . . WHAT THE HELL!!!

I’m pretty sure Jessie Ventura ran in through the side door, picked me up in the recliner, then body slammed us both on the carpet, over and over and over again. I vaguely recall waking up on my side in the fetal position, with tears in my eyes, body soaking wet, both nipples on fire, testicles nowhere to be found, with my left arm tucked under my body in the oddest position, and tingling in my legs. The cat was making meowing sounds I had never heard before, clinging to a picture frame hanging above the fireplace, obviously in an attempt to avoid getting slammed by my body flopping all over the living room..

Note: If you ever feel compelled to ‘mug’ yourself with a tazer, one note of caution: there is no such thing as a one second burst when you zap yourself! You will not let go of that thing until it is dislodged from your hand by a violent thrashing about on the floor.. A three second burst would be considered conservative!

IT HURT LIKE HELL!!!

A minute or so later (I can’t be sure, as time was a relative thing at that point), I collected my wits (what little I had left), sat up and surveyed the landscape. My bent reading glasses were on the mantel of the fireplace. The recliner was upside down and about 8 feet or so from where it originally was. My triceps, right thigh and both nipples were still twitching. My face felt like it had been shot up with Novocain, and my bottom lip weighed 88 lbs.. I had no control over the drooling.

Apparently I pooped on myself, but was too numb to know for sure and my sense of smell was gone. I saw a faint smoke cloud above my head which I believe came from my hair. I’m still looking for my nuts and I’m offering a significant reward for their safe return!

PS.. My wife, can’t stop laughing about my experience, loved the gift, and now regularly threatens me with it!

If you think education is difficult, try being stupid !!!

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Clever History Lesson

The next time you are washing your hands and complain because the water temperature isn’t just how you like it, think about how things used to be.

Here are some facts about the 1500s:

Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to smell, so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odour.

Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies.

By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it.
Hence the saying; “Don’t throw the baby out with the Bath water”.

Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw-piled high, with no wood underneath.
It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof When it rained it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof.
Hence the saying; “It’s raining cats and dogs”.

There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That’s how “canopy beds” came into existence.

The floor was earth – usually hardened by traffic over years. Only the wealthy had something other than earth. Hence the saying, “Dirt poor”.

The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entranceway.
Hence the saying a “thresh hold”.

(Getting quite an education, aren’t you?)

In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to the pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would  eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold
overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes stew had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme; “Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old”.

Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special.
When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off. It was a sign of wealth that “a man could bring home the bacon”. They would cut off a little to share with guests and would all sit around and “chew the fat”.

Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or “the upper crust”.

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would
wake up. Hence the custom of holding a wake.

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house, and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on the
wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (“the graveyard shift”) to listen for the bell; thus, someone could be, saved by the bell or was considered a ….”dead ringer”.

And that’s the truth. Now, whomever said History was boring!!  Educate someone. Share these facts with a friend.

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F A M I L Y

I ran into a stranger as he passed by,
‘Oh excuse me please’ was my reply.

He said, ‘Please excuse me too;
I wasn’t watching for you.’

We were very polite, this stranger and I.
We went on our way and we said goodbye.

But at home a different story is told,
How we treat our loved ones, young and old.

Later that day, cooking the evening meal,
My son stood beside me very still.

When I turned, I nearly knocked him down.
‘Move out of the way,’ I said with a frown.

He walked away, his little heart broken.
I didn’t realize how harshly I’d spoken.

While I lay awake in bed, God’s still

small voice came to me and said,

‘While dealing with a stranger,
common courtesy you use,
but the family you love, you seem to abuse.

Go and look on the kitchen floor,
you’ll find some flowers there by the door.

Those are the flowers he brought for you.
He picked them himself: pink, yellow and blue.

He stood very quietly not to spoil the surprise;
you never saw the tears that filled his little eyes.’

By this time, I felt very small,
And now my tears began to fall.

I quietly went and knelt by his bed;
‘Wake up, little one, wake up,’ I said.

‘Are these the flowers you picked for me?’
He smiled, ‘I found ’em, out by the tree.

I picked ’em because they’re pretty like you.
I knew you’d like ’em, especially the blue.’

I said, ‘Son, I’m very sorry for the way I acted today;
I shouldn’t have yelled at you that way.’
He said, ‘Oh, Mom, that’s okay.
I love you anyway.’

I said, ‘Son, I love you too,
and I do like the flowers, especially the blue.’

FAMILY
Are you aware that if we died tomorrow, the company
that we are working for could easily replace us in
a matter of days.
But the family we left behind will feel the loss
for the rest of their lives.

And come to think of it, we pour ourselves more
into work than into our own family,
an unwise investment indeed,
don’t you think?
So what is behind the story?

Do you know what the word FAMILY means?
FAMILY = (F)ATHER (A)ND (M)OTHER (I) (L)OVE (Y)OU

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