Sunday, April 11, 2010

Now Do You Understand?

The ad says " Test show that those that start drinking soda during that early formative period have a much higher chance of gaining acceptance and 'fitting in" during those awkward pre-teen and teen years."
So start your infant drinking soda? Did people REALLY believe this? Yes, they did, and parents would even put a little soda in the babies bottles! Now I know why it was harder for me to "fit in" as a teen!! My mom made us drink water. We were not allowed to have soda, only on special occasions.
It's no wonder that obesity is rampant in our society today, with increase of diabetes, heart disease, and a number of other health issues. They actually had an organization named "the Soda Pop Board of America"! the ad also says, Promotes active lifestyle, boosts personality and provides essential sugars!
Now I am beginning to understand. People do believe almost everything they read. Good thing we don't believe everything we read or hear today!! (yeah right)

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Easter 2010

Today I celebrated the resurrection of Christ with my mother, father, brother and his family in their church. Over 1,100 people in attendance and it was an awesome experience, from the music to the sermon and even the after service events. As I looked over the crowd as I was leaving the sanctuary, I suddenly was taken back 41 years earlier. Easter, 1969. I would have been 8 years old and my brother Carl about 4. My youngest brother Gary was yet to have been born, but my mother would give birth to him that September. These two Easters really had nothing in common, other than it was Easter, and again I shared it with my brother and my parents. My father had worked for weeks on my brother and my easter suits, and after this picture was taken we would have gone to chruch somewhere, I am not sure where at that time, it may have been at the church I went as a teen, but not sure. I do not remember, but I do remember one thing.

It was the first Easter I realized that the man Jesus, that one we celebrated his birth at Christmas had died and on Easter rose from the dead. I must have heard it from the sermon that morning, but I remember at first thinking..."Wow, can that really happen?" then thinking that if he could do it, then maybe all of us could do it. We all would rise from the dead, and never die. I liked that idea.

It is funny how certain things bring back memories we have stored away deep into our minds and suddenly there they are again. It was like I was back in 1969, holding my little brother's hand and getting onto the church bus and being excited because when we got home there would be an Easter basket filled with eggs and candy. So innocent.

Here I was 41 years later, sitting in a church service, listening to a sermon very similar I am sure to that one I was listening to 41 years earlier. My brother sitting in the pew down from me. I almost wanted to reach over and take his hand hoping in a way we both could go back to that day.

Easter is a special day. A day for life. A day for living. Made possible by one that loved us so much that he died, so we could live to see today and to have lived all these years and have those precious memories.

Happy Easter.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Reading, Writing and Arithmetic

Of the three r's, (reading writing and arithmetic), reading was always my favorite. One of my first memories is sitting in the children's section of Hamilton, Ohio's Lane Public Library and looking at books wishing I could read the words on them.

My mother was and continues to be an avid reader and her love of reading was instilled into me at a very early age. When I finally began to learn how to read, I never wanted to stop. During the summer, the Lane Public Library had a summer reading fair and the "bookmobile" would come to various neighborhoods and the kids go borrow the books they wanted to read for the week and the next week return them and exchange for new ones. The child that read the most books over the summer holiday would be honored by having their name put on the summer reading banner.

I am sure that I have read thousands of books. From Dr. Seuss's "Green Eggs and Ham" to Leo Tolstoy's "War and Peace" and every genre in between. I have many favorite books I have read and some I care not to read again. Like movies, some you can read over and over and others, once is enough. Some of my favorites are... "In Cold Blood" by Truman Capote; "Gone With the Wind" by Margaret Mitchell; and "The Witching Hour" by Anne Rice. But my very first book was read in the floor of the children's section of Hamilton, Ohio's Lane Public Library, "The Tale of Peter Rabbit" by Beatrix Potter. The memory is so fresh and vivid in my mind, just like it was yesterday. Some of my best memories as a child came from reading and that library.

Things have changed quite a bit since then. The Lane Public Library is still there and the main building is on the Ohio Historic Registry of Historic Buildings, but it has seen some changes since then. It also has several branches throughout Butler County. Now most kids have never opened a book other than their school text books and if they read it is off the Internet or from magazines. The neighborhood library is almost a thing of the past. And I have not seen a "bookmobile" in decades. It is unfortunate that reading has taken a back seat to video games and the computer. So next time you need some quiet time, or just need to "get away" from the every day world, grab a book.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Remember Being 16?

My youngest son, Adam is 16 and on Wednesday, Feb. 10 he will be 17. Due to his battle last year with Hodgkins, he was unable to get his driver's license. So this year he is taking driving school and will soon be an official licensed driver. I don't understand why this is making me feel so old, as all my other kids went through this right of passage and I didn't really get this emotional. Maybe it is due to the last year seeing Adam fight cancer and now this is just another mark to say he did it. Or maybe it is just the fact that it is just another sign that yes, I really am getting old.

Pondering these things takes me back to when I was 16. Do you remember when you were 16? Everyone was getting the driver's permit and taking out mom or dad's car to learn how to drive and to move into one of the first steps of adulthood. My friends were driving Chevy Malibu's or Pontiac Grand Prix, or even a couple of trucks.
As for me...I was learing to drive in this.
A fishbowl with wheels. An AMC Pacer. It was a beauty, 75% glass and 25% metal and rubber.
So Adam, when you think you've got it bad and you have to drive your mom's old Taurus take a look at what I had to drive...

Friday, January 08, 2010

Back in the Day

Sometime back in 2003 I had a blog, entitled, surprisingly enough, Reality Check. But the service that I was using completely shut down and I lost a year of my blog. So I began my blogging life on Blogger in October of 2004. Wow, almost six years ago.

Much has transpired since then. Some of my kids got married, some of my kids had kids, making me a grandfather, lost old friends, met new ones, found a new job, dropped that one and found another, sickness, fun times, graduations, anniversaries and birthdays and so much more.

Now I am heading into my 7th year of blogging, and as you can see from the lack of postings it is not what it used to be. But then again, neither am I. I am heading into my 50th year, and finding out the joys of aging, whether it is graceful or not, I am not sure but regardless it is happening. To all of us actually, not just me.

I say all of this to let you know that yes, I am going to continue to blog, as I enjoy it, and I enjoy looking back and seeing what I was doing a few years back. It is a journal of sorts to share with you, but also to share with myself. But I need to add some new life to my blog, as Facebook and Twitter have taken over. So as I enter my 50th year I also want to take a look back over the last 50 years and share some of the things I've seen, as I continue to tell about the things that are my current reality. So come and share 2010 with me as well as the years before as I saw them...