One Question

Today’s news and headlines have many of us feeling uncomfortable and uneasy.  As a Christian, we often see mania happening around us and wonder why God allows the injustices of the world. There are things and questions on our minds that don’t have logical answers.

I’m opening this blog up for questions.  Now mind you, I can’t answer your questions – at least I don’t anticipate being able to do so, but that doesn’t have to keep you from asking. 

Respond to this statement.  If you could ask one question with the assurance that the question would be answered with a satisfactory response, what would that question be and why do you ask.

Here are the rules:

  • It must be clean and family friendly or the question will be deleted.
  • Ask any question, but strive to ask serious, real life questions – not just an attempt at humor.
  • Post your question in the comment section.  Remember, if you haven’t posted a comment here before, you will not see the question until I approve it.
  • If you prefer, you may email the question to me.

I’ll go first.  Here’s my question…

What is it about men and women that think it is alright to abuse children physically and/or sexually?  The reason I ask is that everyday in the news there is a child or children reportedly that have been abused or neglected. I worked as a volunteer foster care review board member and some of the files I read still haunt me today.  I don’t understand what it is inside of a person that would make them harm Innocent children.  I find this to be an ugly blimp – make that mountain in humans.

What is your question?

Thanks,

Darlene

I Won a Photography Contest!

1930's tractor
Winning Photo

 

Another View of the 1930"s tractor

Another View of the 1930's tractor

 

I entered the Garrard County Farm Bureau Photography Contest and won first place with the above photo.  I submitted it in black and white.  You would have thought I won $500.00 instead of $50.00 from the way I carried on when I received the letter telling me the photo won under the My Favorite Tractor  category.

My sister and I went to the Garrard County Farm Bureau annual meeting, enjoyed a great meal, met some really nice people and was entertained by a youth talent show.  On top of all that, I received a framed version of the photograph along with the $50.00 check. 

I just wanted to show you my winning photograph.  It is pretty cool, if i must say so myself!

It Smells Like Home To Me

What reminds you of home the most? Of the five senses, the sense of smell evokes memories for me – more so than any of the others.

For instance, the smell of fresh linens left hanging on a clothes line to dry reminds me of my childhood home.  My mother would pin sheets, towels, blankets and everything she washed on her ringer type washer to the wire line that dad stretched and attached to posts. With a husband and four children, my mother had to do laundry almost daily.  The wringer washer she used had a deep round tub that sat on attached legs.  The wringer was situation atop the tub and had a handle to turn as the clothes were fed through the wringer. She filled the washer with water by the buckets.  If she wanted to use hot water, the water had to be heated on top the cooking stove. After the clothes were washed they had to be put through the wringer.

Put through the wringer is a saying I heard my mother and grandmother say on many occasions when referring to someone looking bad.  They would say things like, she looks like she’s been put through the wringer. I always knew what they meant because of the washer mom used.

When the clothes came out of the wringer, they came out flat and wrinkled.  Mom would hang each piece onto the line and attached them with clothes pins.  Many times, when the clothes were dry, but had not yet been taken  inside, I ran through the sheets and blankets and loved the smell that the fresh sunshine and summer breeze fused into the threads and material. Nightfall came and it was time to jump into bed.  The smell of home wrapped itself around me as I nestled into my spot and just before falling asleep I’d bury my face into my pillow and breath in the outdoors.

Other smells that remind me of home are:

  • Food cooking on the stove and the many delicious odors that drifted from the open windows.   
  • The odor of sweaty horses and other farm animals, though not pleasant. reminds me of our farm life.
  • Tobacco in all stages of growth.

I can pass a barn filled with drying tobacco and my mind will recall the many days playing outside in the barn lot while the grown-ups worked inside the barn stripping tobacco.

Not all smells evoke pleasant memories.  When I smell the sickening smell of a dead skunk in the road, it reminds me of a time that a skunk burrowed intself beneath our (Mike and I) house and decided to give birth.  We could hear them under the house and could not figure out how to get them out. Evidently, something upset mama skunk and she sprayed under or near our house.  Our clothes reaked of skunk.  It was winter and there wasn’t fresh sunshine for us to hang them out to air. I washed and dried the clothes until finally the odor was gone. The skunks finally left on their own…thankfully.

Does any of these remind you of your home?

What are some odors that when you smell them, they take you back to your yesterdays?

One more question, What do you think our home in Heaven will smell like?

On The Road Again

A Tight Squeeze

A Tight Squeeze

We had it in our heads today that we were going to hit the road…and we did. This was another perfect day to ride and thankfully, Mike decided that we’d ride the Yamaha 1300.  I definitely was more comfortable because of that decision.

We had no idea where we were going, but after a few minutes conversation, decided we’d head towards Mount Sterling…that’s where our five month old grandson lives.  We knew our children wouldn’t be home until later, but we wanted to be in that vicinity so we could stop by on our way home.

After making a stop at DQ in Mount Sterling, we headed towards Bath County on US 60. Again, we didn’t really have a plan, other than to ride.  Little tiny droplets of wet stuff fell on us for about thirty seconds, then it was gone.  A dark cloud above our heads left us a little apprehensive, but it didn’t stay with us long either. 

Seeing signs that read Cave Run Lake, we decided that was going to be our destination.  I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a lake any prettier that Cave Run.  We pulled into one of the parking areas, sat and looked in awe at the lake and of course, took a blue million pictures.  Here’s one that shows the beautiful lake.

Beauty Abounds at cave Run Lake

Beauty Abounds at cave Run Lake

Driving down towards the lake, we saw turkeys.  In fact, we pulled to the side of the road and I was able to get a pretty good shot of them as they crossed the road.  It looked like we might be having turkey dinner, they ran out in front of oncoming traffic, but they did make it across safely.

Turkey Crossing

Turkey Crossing

Once we entered Menifee County, the mountains came in view and what a view it was. The beauty was breath taking, the scenery, some of the prettiest we’ve seen in a while.  I think I’d like to take another trip through that area again in a few weeks when the leaves on the trees begin to turn.

Mountain View

Mountain View

 

Menefee County Beauty

Menefee County Beauty

We did make it back to Mt Sterling and stopped in to see our children and grandson.  Braxton was asleep when we first arrived, but he woke up shortly after our arrival.  When he was waking, I picked him up and held him close.  Just as soon as he saw who was holding him, a huge smile broke across his precious face. I would have given him the world if he had asked for it!    We stayed and visited for a couple of hours before heading home. 

The dark clouds above threatened to open and pour water on us, but they held off for a while and we didn’t get wet until we arrived back in Richmond. It looked like it had been raining for a while, but it had all but stopped by the time we got there.  The sprinkles of rain was cold, but my frog tog jacket kept me dry. Mike never did stop to put on a jacket.  He’s tough. The drive home was uneventful – thankfully.

Take a Photo Trip With Me Around Central Kentucky

Today was a beautiful day in Kentucky – hot, but beautiful. Mike and I took a trip on our 750 Honda.  I would rather have taken the touring motorcycle, because it’s more comfortable than the 750.  The good thing about riding the smaller motorcycle though, is it’s easier to maneuver on the smaller roads that we so much like to travel.

Come with me through this photo journal of our day.  I think you might get a small glimpse into our world and understand why we enjoy traveling around the Kentucky backroads. Click on any photo to see a larger version.

The first place we traveled to was the Valley View Ferry that connects Madison County to Jessimine County. 

Valley View Ferry

Valley View Ferry

Have you ever heard the saying, get your ducks in a row? This usually is said to someone when you are telling them to get thier story straight or in the right order.  Anyway, while crossing the ferry, I spotted some ducks in a row.  Look at this, I think this is an awesome picture…
Ducks in a row

Ducks in a row

After crossing the ferry, traveling the Jessimine County backroads, I saw trees with leaves already changing to the fall colors.  They still have a ways to go before turning into the deep reds, golds and orange colors that are so significant in the autumn, but the tree lined road was gorgeous.
Leaving the ferry

Leaving the ferry

I enjoy taking pictures through page wire fences and other type fencing.  I think it adds dimension and interest to the pictures.  After traveling a few miles into Jessamine County, we drove past a bull lying in the field.  When I first saw him, I thought he looked sort of like a big old polar bear.  Mike stopped the motorcycle and pulled into the driveway so that I could shoot the bull.  He (the bull) didn’t move a muscle when I got off the bike and walked over to him.  As you can see in the picture, that little wire fence between us, wouldn’t have meant anything to the bull.  Had I irritated him, he’d would’ve taken me out any time he wanted.  Here’s a couple of shots of my polar bear bull.
My polar bear bull

My polar bear bull

Shooting the bull

Shooting the bull

Traveling on, we crossed a bridge leading from Jessamine County into Mercer County.  This was also a beautiful view.  Don’t you agree that the Kentucky River in this area is one of the most beautiful sites? 
Kentucky River at Mercer County

Kentucky River at Mercer County

Kentucky River with a rocky backdrop

Kentucky River with a rocky backdrop

Beautiful Kentucky River

Beautiful Kentucky River

Ok, these are not of the Kentucky scenery, but we had fun so I thought I’d share a couple of silly pics with you.

Can I do it?

Can I do it?

Stumped

Stumped

Tah-Dah!! I made it.

Tah-Dah!! I made it.

Our final pictures were taken as we crossed Kennedy Bridge from Mercer into Garrard County.  These photos are of the Herrington Lake and Marina.  I always hated crossing this bridge…I don’t like a lot of bridges to begin with, but this one in particular is scary.  I think one reason is that the guard rails seem to be too low, but I’m not sure that is the real problem.  It’s more likely the reason is the bridge isn’t very wide, but it is very long.

Kennedy Bridge

Kennedy Bridge

Herrington Lake Marina

Herrington Lake Marina

Herrington Lake

Herrington Lake

See what I mean?  Isn’t Kentucky a beautiful state and Central Kentucky a gorgeous area?  I love it here and I’m so proud of our state. Kentucky is a great place to live.
Share your Kentucky memories in the comment section or email them to me.
Darlene

 

Does Anyone Roller Skate Anymore?

We rode past the old roller rink in Berea on Sunday.  I don’t even know if those places continue to be referred to as a roller rink or not, do you? I do know that this one is still open and some people continue to skate there.

I recall going there when I was a child.  Our church had monthly skating parties (oops, Baptists’ don’t have parties) where we went by car loads over the country roads to the small town about twelve miles away.  Once there, we waited in line, paid our dollars (can’t recall what it cost, but it wasn’t much) to get in, stood in line to rent skates and raced to pull them on, lace them up and raced to see who could make it to the huge skating area first.  The floors were made of wood and there were iron railings around the rink.  In the front right corner was a booth or room where the music was played.  To the left was a concession stand and in the middle were benches for skaters to sit and rest or for onlookers to sit and watch.  The area in the front was covered in carpet.  This allowed skaters to “walk” on their tippy toes while still wearing their skates.

I couldn’t skate – at least not very well.  That didn’t stop me from trying though.  John Jackson and Glenmore Snyder, two members of our church did their best to teach me and others the rules. How to stand still on skates, how to stop, how to take off and eventually, how to let go of the rails. I learned quickly just how hard those wood floors really were when I landed on them. 

The music was loud.  The louder and the faster the song, the faster the experienced skaters skated.  Sometimes the manager would have to call down the older boys because they were being too careless.

The one thing I liked was watching girls as they held hands and skated with their boyfriends during the slow songs.  I day dreamed about the time I could do that.  Eventually, there did come a time when I skated with one of the boys during a slow song, but I wasn’t one of the popular skaters.  If a boy skated with me, it was because he was just being nice.  Mike, my husband, was one of those boys who was just being nice.

Our church continued this tradition of going to the skating rink for our monthly outings.  Soon, it became just a youth group thing and all too soon, roller skating became a thing of the past.

I’ve been to an ice skating rink a few times as a married adult.  I really enjoyed going and for some reason, ice skating seemed easier for me.  Mike, didn’t enjoy it nearly as much as I did, but I think that had something to do with that I was a better ice skater than he was. 

I do hear of roller skating birthday parties for children from time to time, but I wondered if anyone of my readers ever roller skate anymore – do you?  Let me hear about your skating stories.

Of Mice and Sin

Someone please tell me, what purpose does a mouse serve?  I’ve thought about it and can’t come up with anything.  Do you think maybe God has a since of humor and just decided to see how much he could annoy us by creating those little creatures? 

I realize that God made everything for a purpose, but the only purpose for a mouse that I can think of is food for my cats. I haven’t seen a mouse around here in a while.  Maybe those outside cats are doing their jobs and eradicating our area of mice. 

Why am I writing about mice? 

I was reading through my grandmother’s memory book today, and on one of the pages it suggested that I write a memory related to a mouse.  There is no way that I can write everything I have to say about mice on that little index card sized page.

My first experience with a mouse that I can recall was just shortly after Mike and I married. It angered me when I discovered I had little visitors in my cabinet around my pots and pans, silverware and other areas of my kitchen. Little black dots of mouse poop was everywhere. 

Everything in the kitchen had to be washed and sanitized.  It was a tremendous job. I didn’t want to catch those little boogers, I wanted to kill them, so I put out poison all through the house.

A few days later, while Mike was away at work, the little dickens came out and ran slowly around my living room.  Scared me to death!  I called my brother Danny to come over to catch the little thing.  I wasn’t about to touch it or try catch it.  If Danny hadn’t been available, I would have left home.  Once the mouse was gone, I was left shaken, but otherwise OK.

One day on my way to work, I was driving and singing with the music on the radio when I saw something black dart from beneath the passenger seat. When I saw the creature, I slammed on my brakes.  I didn’t look to see if anyone was behind me and it wouldn’t have made a difference if there had been.  I managed to park the car in a driveway and did have enough since to put the car in park before jumping out. I discovered later in the day that I destroyed the master cylinder (whatever that is) in my car.

I could feel a pool of bad words forming deep within my guts.  I swallowed hard trying to keep the words in-prisoned.  I don’t recall now if they escaped or not. I don’t think they did, I was more scared than mad.  I hope I haven’t disappointed you with my confession, but sometimes there’s nothing left to do, but swear!

The thing about living in my community is that everyone knows everyone.  I don’t recall how many people stopped to check on me, but I’m sure I looked a mess with tears rolling down my face and screaming hysterically.  My boss and her husband stopped, but they were no help.  Bill couldn’t do anything for laughing.  He did offer to help, but I told him that my sister was behind me and that I’d wait for her.  This was the days before cell phones, but I knew she would be coming soon because we’d both stopped and visited mom before heading to work.  I learned later that Bill wanted to stop and purchase a mousetrap to put on my desk so that I’d see it when I arrived at work.  Linda wouldn’t let him do it though.

When Paulene pulled in behind me and asked me what was wrong, I calmly (not) told her about the mouse.  She wanted me to drive my car back to moms and then I could ride in to town with her.  I told her in not so nice words that there was no way that I was driving that car anywhere.  She drove it to moms and I followed her in her car.  Later when Mike came home, he took the car apart looking for the mouse.  He did find a little nest in the spare tire compartment in the trunk.  No mice were anywhere.  I supposed I scared them away.

When my daughter-in-law April joined our family, she tried to show me the err of my ways.  She used humane mouse traps to catch her mice. HUMPH!  Not me.  Kill those little pests, I say.

Eric and April lived next door to us for a while.  One day when Eric nor Mike was at home, April called me and told me she caught her mouse.  I was proud for her, but wanted no part of that situation.  A few minutes later I heard a knock on the door.  It was April and her mouse.  She was so proud of that little thing with the little beady eyes in that little box.  I told her in very plain language that she was not bringing that thing into my house.  She kept insisting that it would be OK, and I insisted that she was not coming in.  She was on the front porch laughing and trying to get me to let her in.  I was in the house laughing and holding the door, refusing to allow her in the door.  That’s how Mike found us when he came home.

April finally turned the mouse over to Mike.  He killed it.  Now, that’s what I’m talking about!

I hope I haven’t offended anyone with my cruelty to mice stories.  I’m sorry if I have, but I hate those things.  Come on, someone confess your mouse stories.  I know I’m not the only one fearful of those speedy little creatures.  Leave a comment or email your mice stories to me at darlenesnyder@bellsouth.net

 

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