Dare to Dance the Tide

St Francois River bear Farmington,

“So don’t you sit upon the shoreline and say you’re satisfied, choose to chance the rapids and dare to dance the tide.” The River, Garth Brooks

This is one of my all time favorites of Brooks. Not just because of my love of the river but because of the way he compares our dreams with the river.

Every flood that happens on the river changes the appearance of the river sometimes even changing its course. How many times has this happened to you? Some major life event happens and forces a change in your dreams.

How many times have you settled for second best instead of best because you keep letting it slip through your fingers and in your mind you won’t achieve “”best” so you give up on your dream and settle for second best?

St Francois River bear Farmington, MO.

As the water of the river enters a shallow area and the gradient of the river becomes steeper rapids are formed. These rapids are representative of the hard times in your life. What you do here is very important as to whether your dream becomes a reality or not.

People who float the rivers have different skills. There are six classes of rapids with I) being the safest and VI being the hardest and most dangerous. When a kayaker or canoeist comes to this spot they have to decide how good they are and they will either pull around the rapids or go for it. No one can make the decision for them. You have to make this decision yourself.

So here you are looking at that very spot on your “river of life”, you are at a point where it is very important to stay focused on your dreams. Don’t lose site of them. Could you fail? Failure is always a possibility. There are no guarantees in life except for the fact that in order to succeed one must try.

So here you are. You have to decide what you are going to do. Are you going to sit upon that shoreline and be completely satisfied or are you going to choose to chance the rapids and dare to dance the tide?

St Francois River bear Farmington, MO.

Spread the love and be kind to each other.

All photos were taken by Double D Acres LLC

Unfathomable Determination

The rain has pretty much settled in for the night. I sit here with my eyes closed listening to the raindrops dancing on the tin roof creating a soothing symphony.

My mind focuses on those brave men and women, the pioneers, who settled the west. They had no idea of the challenges they would face. The only idea they had of where they were going was the tales they had in there minds put there by the adventurers who went before them.

There were stories of feast and famine. Massacres. Whole wagon trains who died and didn’t fulfill their dreams. Disease and prairie fires. Yet these people had a dream that so obsessed them they were willing to sacrifice anything and everything to follow their dream. That profound dedication my friends died with them and no longer exists in this country anymore.

I don’t know if you have ever been camping in the rain but I can tell you from experience it can be very miserable.

I sit here in the coziness of my cabin listening to the rain and I have a vision of men, women, and children huddled together under the rain fly of a wagon trying to get their nourishment so they will have the stamina to do another 10 to 20 miles beginning at dawn. One can only imagine the sore muscles they must have been nursing. Wondering how much further they have to travel. How many more river crossings and broken wagon wheels they will have to endure. Will it be their wagon that breaks this time? How many more of their possessions will they have to leave behind so they can lighten the load on the wagons so they can get them over the mountain?

With these things dancing through their minds it had to be difficult to sleep. Knowing all to well they needed to sleep so they could get the much needed rest to complete another leg of their journey.

The fingers of dawn ascend on their camp. The rain has stopped and the day promises sunshine to dry things out. They begin packing the wagons, hitching the teams and checking the wagons so they can start out once again. They have to battle the annoying suction created by the mud delivering another hardship for them to deal with.

Guts and grit kept them pushing toward their destination and failure was not an option. True representation of determination and faith. They not only needed faith in God. They had to have faith in those leading them and most of all faith in themselves. There were those who celebrated and those who endured heartbreak. So many died along those trails who never lost sight of their dream and died trying to bring their dream to reality.

People could learn a lot from these pioneers and use it in their lives to achieve their dreams. Don’t ever stop believing. They didn’t.

Spread the love and be kind to one another. It doesn’t cost you anything.

Walk Your Own Way

“I don’t know where all the rivers run. I don’t know how far. I don’t know how come. But I am gonna die believin’ each step that I take ain’t worth the ground that I walk on if we don’t walk it our own way.” From the song Bang A Drum

I once was a follower. I was afraid to do things my own way. I was afraid of being wrong or offending someone. Then one day I heard Chris LeDoux sing these words and it caused an awakening in me that changed my life.

I did a lot of soul searching and looked back at my life in a new way. A way that I had never really imagined.

I will admit that I am hardheaded and by far I am not the sharpest tool in the shed but I realized I had the right to do things and believe the way I wanted too. Right, wrong or indifferent I should believe in me.

There are those who will try to make me believe I wasn’t able to make the right decisions on my own. That I would fail if I didn’t listen to the majority that instituted what they believed to be right for me. News flash, the majority isn’t always right.

I thought to myself how could these people tell me what was right for me when they had never experienced my heartaches, my celebrations and other life experiences. We can’t let people live our lives for us. We need to walk this world in our own way.

It was one of the most important changes I made in my life. It raised my self esteem to new heights. I finally felt like somebody. Don’t get me wrong. Yes I made bad decisions and choices and still do but I made them. No one else did and most importantly I learned from those mistakes and couldn’t blame anyone but myself.

No matter what you do in life or what decision you make there is always going to be someone who disagrees with you. It is inevitable. What is important is how you handle the situation. Do you cower and relinquish your opinion to please those people or do you stand up for what YOU believe in and stand your ground?

As for me I am going to fight for what I believe in even if I stand alone. Maybe it is because I have grown older but I really don’t care what people think of me any longer. I have walked the earth long enough to know that I am never going to please everyone and not everyone is going to agree with me. Not everyone will like my writing or political views. Not everyone will like my photography or my horseshoe art. What is important is how I handle it and that I always “walk it my own way”. If we don’t learn to believe in ourselves we do our spirit, soul and our being a great injustice.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. It is so deeply appreciated. You may agree or not agree with my opinion but if you don’t I respect that because we all are entitled to our opinion. We don’t however have the right to demean, harass, or stoop to name calling if we disagree which seems to be the norm for so many people.

Remember to spread the love and be kind to one another. Kindness doesn’t cost anyone anything.

“Small House Living

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The last day of 2018 is finally upon us and 2019 is waiting in the wings.  It is definitely going to be different for me.  With all the rage about “little house” living I decided to move into a 10 x 14 cabin along with my Great Pyrenes and Australian Shepherd.  It is going to be a challenge I know.

I do have electric but no running water.  I do have access to a shower and bathroom.  I have been living in it for about 2 weeks now and so far so good.  The dogs have a fenced in yard and handle the close quarters real well.  They have adjusted well and I hope to enlarge their fenced in yard real soon.

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I finished the inside of a prebuilt cabin. I chose to do it as economically as possible and have managed to keep it under a thousand dollars. Instead of buying cabinets I made shelves and I have a compost toilet.

It isn’t anything fancy but it is livable and cozy. I heat it with an oil filled electric heater that will run you out of the cabin even with temps in the teens.

I have some property that I want to build on and this adventure will help me see what is important and not when I build my place.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. It is deeply appreciated. Wishing everyone a happy and prosperous New Year. God bless you all.

Oh, The Memories

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My grandparents home in Lafe, Arkansas

“Take care of all your memories.  For you cannot relive them.” – Bob Dylan

During Memorial Day weekend I headed to Lafe, Arkansas for the yearly family reunion. Driving south on  67 was a real treat.  It has been quite a while since I had made that trip. As I traveled down the highway my memory drifted back to when I was a child and we use to make that trip as a family.  I could hear my sister saying, “mom Wayne touched me” or “mom Wayne is sitting too close to me”.

After some time I came upon a place in the road that really stirred memories inside of me.  My grandpa had got me a pup and helped me get it in the car.  I named the pup Penny. We made it about an hour up the road before Penny began to whine.  It didn’t sit well with my dad, no siree.

My grandparents lived in this house for as long as I can remember.  When I was a yung -un I thought that house was so big.  After I became an adult I realized it wasn’t as big as I thought it was.  One of the things I remember is that when we had family get togethers my grandma would put the desserts on her bed just outside the kitchen door.  We called it the “dessert bed”.  We had a well on the porch that we pulled water up in a well bucket. All the kids got together and drilled them a well in 1970.  They now had running water.  Then in 1973 my uncle and I put an inside bathroom in for them,  That summer my grandma refused to use it because in her words it was too pretty to mess up.  That winter when the temps dropped and the snow flew grandma decided it wasn’t as pretty as she thought because she began using it.

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Grandparents house in Lafe, Arkansas

My grandpa had 3 ponds on the place.  I remember one day while fishing with two of my cousins and my cousin Billy Jean hooked my cousin Clois’s eye lid.  Man my cousin could scream.  My grandma had an old root cellar off the back porch where she kept the food she canned.

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Front door to grandparent’s house

As I stood there looking at the front door my mind was drawn back into time remembering all the warm times we enjoyed in their home.  The front porch used to be screened in and there was a porch swing on each end.  They had a wood stove for heat so we slept in feather beds with so many covers on you, it was almost impossible to turn over.  As I stood there I could smell the coffee and bacon like it was real.  When I was young these smells woke me up and I would run to the wood stove to try and get warm.  Oh the memories.  I could go on for ever.

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Headstone of Great Grandparents

In closing I would like to mention that my ancestors fought on the side of the South.  My great grandfather’s name was Robert E Lee White.  That should suffice as to which side my family supported.  Since the new mayor of St. Louis is removing a confederate statue I will never spend any money in the city.  The mayor can believe that the Civil War was about slavery.  I remind her that over 200,000 African Americans fought on the side of the Confederates.  I would also like to remind her how racist the American flag is to the Native Americans.  It is a symbol of lies, murder and of the people who took their land away from them.

Thanks for reading my blog.  I hope you enjoyed reading it.  Be kind to one another, share the love and don’t squat with your spurs on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Where Are We Headed?

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Balloon Glow at Engler Park in Farmington, MO

“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” – Albert Schweitzer

The other night while I was responding to a post on the attack in the UK, I used the word “they” and I had some fanatic climb all over me and accuse me of being a bigot.  I asked for an explanation and his response was come on, you were referring to Muslims.  I told him I was referring to ISIS but didn’t name them because no one had taken credit  yet.  He says yeah right, cut the BS and just admit that you were referring to Muslims.  This man did not even know me and was putting words in my mouth.  He had to have issues to be that adamant that I meant Muslims when I told him I didn’t.  It shall remain a mystery to me.

A friend and I had been talking about the shortage of compassion in our world today.   We had a discussion about how did we get here and where are we headed.  After the conversation with the rude gentleman, I got to thinking about the conversation between my friend and I and it occurred to me that people like this are helping make compassion a thing of the past.  This man was so rude, a person would find it very hard to show him any compassion.

In 2013 there were 664,435 legal induced abortions in the US.  We are talking human lives.  That is over 1800 fetuses ripped daily from the wombs of their mothers.  I am in no way judging the people having the abortion because I feel it is their right, however 1800 a day?  Where is the compassion?  People in this country get more fired up over horse slaughter than they do abortions.  Our society has more compassion for animal lives than human.  How has this happened?

Compassion – sympathetic consciousness  of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it. –  Merriam Webster

Our own congress has no compassion for our war veterans.  They gut their benefits then give money to refugees entering this country who have it better than our own veterans. That is just wrong on so many levels.  Even John McCain, former POW, doesn’t seem to have any compassion for our veterans.  Ten years ago Americans were very compassionate about our flag and our National Anthem.  I went to a rodeo tonight and I was saddened by the number of people who didn’t remove their hats and those that didn’t stand when a rider brought “Old Glory” into the arena.  I know they have that right but ten years ago it would have been 100% participation.  Why so much change all of a sudden?  Where are we headed?

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Balloon glow at Engler Park in Farmington, MO

Is the US destined to become a passionless country?  Our government wants to bring refugees into the country as our homeless veterans live in the streets along with other homeless people.  We have citizens at this moment that are so passionate about who they thought should be president that it is coming between friends and family.  Sad thing is that neither side has enough compassion to initiate a bill forcing them to put money back in social security that they stole and keep the government from using it for anything else. Murder statistics show us that every year our citizenry loses a little more compassion for human life every year.  When it comes to our elderly it seems compassion has left the building.  Financial crimes against the elderly seems to escalate every year.

I could go on but I think you know what I am saying.  Every year compassion becomes more and more an emotion of the past.  A relic.  Lost and forgotten.  I don’t know what your thoughts are I am afraid of what lies ahead for this great nation.  It seems that we have all kinds of compassion for the people of other countries but none for the people of the United States like the veterans and elderly.  Things have to change in this country and soon but it is going to take ‘us the people” to do it.

Thank you for reading.  Remember, don’t squat with your spurs on, share the love and be kind to one another,  God Bless you one and all.

Prep Or Not To Prep

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Sunrise in Bonne Terre, MO

“To be prepared is half the victory.” – Miguel de Cervantes

Prepper : noun/North American     A person who believes a catastrophic disaster or emergency is likely to occur in the future and makes active preparations for it typically by stockpiling food, ammunition, and other supplies.

I know that there are those of you who think we are crazy.  Personally I think it is the difference between eating and starving.  It is no different than having a savings account set aside for an emergency that might arise.  The mainstream media has given the term “prepping” a bad name.  They tend to make us out to be lunatics wearing tin foil hats, Doomsday idiots and other things.  There are different types of prepping dependent on what one is trying to accomplish and an estimated three million participants in the US.

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I was pretty much raised a country boy.  Learned to hunt, plant garden, fish and how to cook and can.  In the spring we would head into the woods looking for polk.   We would pick blackberries, dewberries, mulberries, muscadines and gooseberries and my mom would make jelly from them.  My grandparents and parents were preppers.  They didn’t know that they were and neither did I.  Every year they put out a big garden and canned what could be canned.  I remember us getting together and canning sausage one year. That was quite a learning experience.  My Grandma White canned a lot of meat including fish.  She had a root cellar where she kept what she canned, onions to dry, potatoes and herbs.

My mom canned a lot also.  Some years she would can up to 100 pints of green beans. She canned beets, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, salsa, etc..  My mom had shelves in the basement where she stored the stuff she canned.  I can’t remember a year she didn’t do any canning.

I don’t know how you feel about preppers.  There are those that like them and others that think their elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top.  We aren’t hurting anyone.  I have seen some people who seem to be afraid of us.  Why?, I don’t know.

I prep because I live close to the New Madrid fault in Missouri.  In 63 years I have also been in 3 tornadoes.  In one of them I was without power for 10 days and during the day the high temps were in the upper 90s.  I have seen many different scenarios of what life would be like here in this area if an earthquake occurred along the New Madrid fault and none of them were very promising.  It would be devastating and would tax the local food suppliers.  Think about it.  They call for a snowstorm and bread and milk are cleaned out of the local stores in a matter of minutes.

I realize prepping isn’t for everyone but I will be a prepper until the day I die.  Thanks for reading my blog.  Means a lot.  Be kind to one another.  Share the love and remember, don’t squat with your spurs on.  God Bless you one and all.

 

 

 

 

Anger: the Negative Emotion

“Every day we have plenty of opportunities to get angry, stressed or offended.  But what you’re doing when you indulge these negative emotions is giving something outside yourself power over your happiness.  You can choose to not let little things upset you.” – Joel Osteen

How many times a day do you get angry, stressed or offended?  Three times?  Five times? More than that?  You are running late and aggravated.   You walk into the kitchen for a quick breakfast and find the toast burned, the eggs are cold and the hash browns need the oil changed in them.  You are running late and you have an important meeting first thing.  You finally get in the car and fire it up only to find it a hair above empty.  Your husband took it to the baseball meeting and forgot to put gas in it.  How would you handle it or react to it?  How you handle these moments will pretty much dictate what kind of day you have.

I don’t know if Americans aren’t getting enough R&R or if they are just mad at the world. From public schools to the streets of the big cities it seems that more and more people are turning to fighting at an alarming rate.  Social media is filled with videos of fights between a couple of people to a whole neighborhood.   Is there an imbalance between love and hate or has love left the building completely?  It is something that we really need to look at because it is accelerating at an alarming rate.

A good start is to evaluate ourselves.  Do you get angry over burnt toast or does it take a lot to make you angry?   If it is the first one then perhaps you should seek out a counselor to help you deal with this.  If your anger is that easy to bring about then I just can’t imagine you ever having a good day.  Take that first step and seek out someone to help you tame this anger.  You will be glad you did.

All negative emotions are detrimental to one’s happiness  therefore we have to learn to control them and not let them control us.  Be positive and take control of your life and cleanse yourself of the negative baggage that you carry around with you.  Let us all try to bring some joy and kindness to the world.

I want to thank you for taking the time to read my blog and if you have a short temper I hope you seek help and address the problem.  Be kind to one another, share the love and God Bless you one and all.  Don’t squat with your spurs on.