Saturday, August 27, 2011

”La Troisieme Age”

Beautiful summer day in the Arkansas mountains

A little Arkansas humor. 
 While waiting for my physician’s appointment, I impatiently thumbed through stacks of magazines. I was delighted to find a new publication, “Life Goes On”. It is the brainchild of two sisters who have long thought that women want to read informative stories about older women who are doing interesting things.*

One of the articles was on positive aging. The writer makes reference to a French term describing the years after 50. They call it “La Troisieme Age,” meaning “the Third Age.” The writer further describes our life’s journey in three ages. The first age is childhood, the second age is the responsibility of adulthood’ working, raising families and such. La Troisieme Age is the time to concentrate on YOU! I love, love, love it!

Even though I love the sweet life I have, the transition from caretaker to taking care is not always easy. There are those moments when the house is too still. I miss the days my house was filled with noise and chaos of active children. I look out my window and see an empty playhouse and remember…...

But, my job is done. My children have left the nest to feather their own. Their houses are filled with the sounds of beautiful grandchildren. They are strong and self sufficient.

In this third age, we are blessed to be grandparents. Our greatest joy is the rush of grandchildren to greet us. We would love to see the kids and grandkids every day. Instead we will have to be content to make the best of our times together. There is a benefit to being the “fun grandparents” who visit and just play.

Antique in an antique?

There is also much freedom in this third age. On the spur of the moment, we took off to the mountains last weekend. That would not have been possible in the other ages. Other person’s schedules and wishes would need considering.

We thought this was funny...police officer; not so much!

As I have said before, the great thing about Arkansas is its natural beauty. We attended an antique car show on the way. It is one of Dan’s loves. Perhaps that should be filed under birds of a feather: antiques love antiques.

We can be silly. We can be serious. We can be spontaneous. We can pursue all the dreams we dreamt in the first ages. Maybe even more importantly, we can make this world a better place by helping others.

Whatever age we are in, we hope to make it the best one yet!

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: Ecclesiastes 3:1

                                                                                        *Editor Marcy Gouge
                                                                                         “Life Goes On”

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mustard Seed

The earlier part of this week was filled with those little foxes that can spoil the vine. We weren’t feeling really well which always makes things more annoying. A home project scheduled was to take four hours to complete. Here it is a week later and still….. (Sigh). One of Dan’s customers refused an order, including a case of dish soap, which he compensated for.

As mid-week arrived, our focus began to change. We are privileged to participate in a local mission Wednesday night worship service. A few of the residents approached us after the service. One wanted Jesus in his life. He and his new bride are now saved and walking in the Grace of God.

We took the dish soap to the mission. I noticed one young man gingerly picking up each bottle, smelling each like he had never seen dish soap before. The mystery was soon solved. He shared with us he had been washing dishes at the mission with hand soap because that was all they had. He said, “I prayed for dish soap just this morning and you brought it tonight.”

A young man we know was in dire need of a liver transplant. He was not expected to live more than a few weeks without it. We drove to Memphis to visit with him, his wife and baby daughter. They ended up blessing us with their positive attitude and faith. Both shared they knew God would come through for them. However He chose to answer their prayers, they were in total peace. The liver transplant has been done and he is doing well.

I received news my sister was very ill in a Mississippi hospital. As soon as I could gather my things I headed out for the three hour trip. As my night vision is lacking, I do not usually drive at night – especially long distances. With much prayer along the way, I made it safely without incident. My sister is still very ill. There are some minute signs of improvement. I know God will come through for her as well.

Life’s little annoyances can distract us from the big picture. God cares about all that concerns us no matter how big or small. I was reminded of the words I often speak to others; “Remember, you can’t go anywhere that God has not gone before you to make a way.”

Did I mention we are having a great week?

The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches. (Matthew 13:31-32)

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Summer Shenanigans

It is Saturday night and Dan and I have been out bar-hopping again. Well, at least our version. We went to a local restaurant which has a separate bar—desert bar that is. We decided for our Saturday night dinner date to have hot fudge cake for our meal.

When we are kids we want to be adults. As adults, sometimes we want to be and do act like kids. As an adult we are allowed to make these choices on occasion. We recently made another perhaps not so mature decision.


Our church had a series called Summer Play. One of the events was a very successful ‘Summer Shindig.’ There was cat fish, standard for any Southern event, home made ice cream, skillet cooked Southern succotash (chicken, sausage, taters, corn and more). For those who survived the events of the day, the evening offered line dancing.

Of course there were the old fashioned sack races, three legged races and so on. It was all great fun watching everyone enjoying themselves. Then I found myself in line for riding the mechanical bull. I quickly became the spectacle not the spectator.

I blame it on the triple digit temperature. I don’t know what Dan’s excuse was. With some difficulty (Linda Grace’s foot slipped through the platform) and assistance I mounted the bull. There wasn’t much riding to it. We were on and we were off. Just for your information, these saddles are polished down with several coats of ArmorAll.

There was ample padding for the fall. Many of the younger kids got just as big a kick out of bouncing on it as sliding off the bull. Well okay – some folks actually did ride well enough to make any cowpoke proud. I on the other hand, my bruises and pride are healing nicely thank you.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

Psalm 4:8