Monday, February 29, 2016

More Wisdom from Emmet Fox

      I am reading The Sermon On The Mount by Emmet Fox for the second time and finding even more treasure.  If the quotes I've posted on several different occasions in the past few days speak to you, I would highly recommend purchasing the book.  There is so much wisdom, insight and revelation contained in these pages!  I intend to read it several more times.

    " A tragic mistake that is often made by orthodox religious people is to assume that the Will of God for them is bound to be something very dull and uninviting, if not positively unpleasant.  Consciously or not they look upon God as a hard task-master, or a severe Puritanical parent.  Too often their prayers virtually amount to something like this:  "Please God, give me such and such a boon which I sorely need--but I don't suppose you will, because you won't think it is good for me."  Needless to say, a prayer of this sort is answered as all prayers are answered, according to the faith of the subject; that is to say, the boon is not granted.  The truth is that the Will of God for us always means greater freedom, greater self-expression, wider and newer and brighter experience; better health, greater prosperity, wider opportunity of service to others--life more abundant.
     If you are ill or in poverty, or obliged to do work that you dislike; if you are lonely, or if you have to mix with people who displease you; you may be certain that you are not expressing the Will of God, and a long as you are not expressing His Will, it is natural for you to experience inharmony; and it is equally true that when you do express His Will, harmony will come."  (p. 141-142)

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Dr. Ben Carson

       I have heard many people say they love & admire Ben Carson but don't think he has a chance of winning the Republican nomination. I beg to disagree. If those who love him would start speaking hope for his candidacy and telling their friends and family they are voting for him because of his integrity and character instead of listening to the polls I believe he has a very good chance.
      That is what I plan to do. As long as his name is on the ballot I will continue to support him and will not give up unless he does. We need a person who loves America and is not doing this for personal gain.  We also need someone who is a role model for our children. For me, Donald Trump is not that man. There is nothing about him that I would like my children to model their lives after!
       I, with the rest of the frustrated citizens have been glad that he has been brash and outspoken about many things we are all angry about, but I am not supporting him as a candidate. He does not appear to me to be a man of substance or character. He says needlessly mean things to those who disagree with him. He has put forth no real plan for any 'fix' of America--just "it will be great" and "you will love it."  He has a past record of supporting very liberal candidates and seems to have huge ideas of grandeur.
      Ben Carson, on the other hand, has led an inspirational life. Have you seen the movie "Gifted Hands" which is the story of his life. I highly recommend it. It is a wonderful testimony of a man who overcame much adversity to become a world class neurosurgeon. I believe the same characteristics will cause him to be an excellent president, too.

Breitbart News

      If you don't already, you might want to check out Breitbart News.  Their reporting is more fair and balanced than any other source I've found.  They also have uncovered many stories the mainstream media has been forced to report.  If you have gotten most of your news from a newspaper or the mainstream media-even Fox News--I think you will find Breitbart a better source of news.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Atlas, The Next Generation

Many people call this amazing!  I suppose it is, but I think it is also very frightening.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

A Fun Vacation!

      We have just returned from a fun week with stays in Orange Beach, Alabama, Gulf Breeze, Florida, and Montgomery, Alabama.  Since we had never been farther south than Montgomery in that area of the country we decided to take a driving trip in that area.  My sister & her husband recently bought a vacation house in Gulf Breeze and were going to be down there last week so it seemed a great time to see their new house. We also had a friend who had a condominium years ago on Orange Beach.  He always talked about how much he loved the area so we were curious to see it.  And then we have dear friends in Montgomery who we met through Tommy Tyson's Aqueduct Board.  Two other dear friends--also members from the Board live in Birmingham so they drove down to Montgomery and we had a wonderful reunion at Hutch & Jane's farm.
      It was a fun vacation.  We liked Orange Beach--maybe not as much as Longboat Key, Florida, but it was beautiful in its' own way.  We stayed in a nice little Bed & Breakfast--the Original Romar House--which was on the beach.
The Original Romar House in Orange Beach
Our room at the Romar House

Orange Beach
 The first day it was cold and windy so instead of freezing on the beach, we rented bicycles and went for a long ride through a nature preserve.  We even saw an alligator along the path.

The next day the director of the Bed & Breakfast suggested we might enjoy a car ferry ride to Dauphin Island.  When she mentioned it was a short drive from there to Bellingrath House & Gardens I was eager to go.
Getting ready to drive onto the ferry
The gardens were beautiful--even in winter--I can only imagine how beautiful they must be in the spring and summer!  

We also enjoyed the guided house tour where we learned the inspiring history of the house and gardens.

Instead of taking the ferry back to Orange Beach we decided to return around Mobile Bay.  Unfortunately, we didn't get there early enough or we could have toured the USS Alabama.  Maybe next time. 

The next day we drove to my sister & brother-in-law's.  They were in the process of planning the landscaping for the area directly in front of their new house so we helped them pick out plants, put them in the ground and mulch.

We also toured Ft. Pickens.

At Pensacola Beach we watched fishermen land this shark.  After taking pictures they released it.
Pensacola Beach was even more beautiful as the sun was setting.

We ended our vacation sitting on this beautiful porch reminiscing with friends of the great times we had at Aqueduct.

We got home Tuesday night.  This is what it looked like yesterday at our house.  Quite a change!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Another great lesson from Emmet Fox's Sermon on the Mount

From Emmet Fox's The Sermon on the Mount.

     "Thinking about sickness or disease is only one of the two factors that produce bodily ailments, and it is usually the less important.  The other, and more important factor, is the entertainment of negative or destructive emotions, although this fact seems to be very little understood . . .So important is it, however, that it is simply imposssible to insist too strongly upon the fact that most bodily ailments are caused by the patient's allowing destructive emotions to hold a place in his mind.  It cannot be too often repeated that to entertain feelings of anger, resentment, jealousy, spite, and so forth, is certain to damage your health in some way or other, and quite likely to damage it very severely indeed.  Remember that the question of the justification for such feelings does not arise at all.  It has absolutelying nothing to do with the results, for the thing is a matter of natural law.
     A woman said: "I have a right to be angry," meaning that she had been a victim of very shabby treatment, and that she consequently possessed a kind of license or special permit to hold angry feelings without their natural consequences upon the body following.  This, of course, is absurd.  There is no one to give such a permit and if it could be done--if general laws could ever be set aside in special instances--we should have, not a universe, but a chaos.  If you press the button, from no matter what motive, good or bad--to save a man's life or to murdr him--the electric bell will ring; because that is the law of electricity.  If you drank a deadly poison inadvertently, you would die or at least seriously damage your body, because such is the law.  You may have mistakenly supposed it to be a harmless fluid, but that would make no defference because the law takes no account of intentions.  For the same reason, to entertain negative emotions is to order trouble--primarily physical trouble, and also trouble in general--quite independently of any seeming justifications which you may suppose yourself to have...
     To indulge in a sense of execration of anyone (quite irrespective of any question of deserts, or otherwise, in the object of your condemnation) is certain to bring trouble upon your own head proportionate to the intensity of the feeling you entertain, and the number of times or minutes that you devote to it."

    I believe this is absolutely true but not known or understood by the majority of people today.  Even when we know it, it is difficult to put into practice because we feel we have 'rights'.
    One way to help ourselves stop trying to exercise our 'rights' to be angry, or offended, or resentful is to change the way we see the person who has caused us harm.  For me, another quote from this book which I posted earlier, helps much.  "Let us be merciful in our mental judgments of our brother, for, in truth, we are all one, and the more deeply he seems to err, the more urgent is the need for us to help him with the right thought, and so make it easier for him to get free.  You--because you understand the power of the Spiritual Idea, the Christ Truth--have a responsibility that others have not; see that you do not evade it.  When his delinquency comes to your notice, remember that the Christ in him is calling out for help to you who are enlightened--so be merciful..."

Monday, February 15, 2016

14 old guys on a giant seesaw in Arosa, Switzerland

My brother posted this on his Facebook page.  I can't help laughing everytime I watch it!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

A Beautiful Snowy Day For A Walk In the Woods

        It was snowing this afternoon so Country Guy and I went for a walk on the paths in our woods.  It was beautiful!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Jonathan Kaye

     Have you seen the movie, "Second Hand Lions"?  It has been out for several years but is still one of my favorite movies.  There's a line at the end spoken about the two old codgers who had many adventures.  It is "They really lived, didn't they?"  That is how I feel about our friend, Jonathan Kaye.  
     I first met Jonathan a couple of years ago when I was looking for someone who could price trees for a grant application I was writing for the Linn Park.  In the end he gave us an exceptional price and threw in the planting, so instead of pricing trees, I bought trees.
     When I first met him I was struck by his genuineness and fascinated by our conversation.  A couple of months ago he called to say he was going to run for State Senator for our district because he felt he could make a difference drawing from the experiences he had in life.  He and Clair came to our house for dinner and told us some of the plans they had for running their campaign.  We were impressed and promised to help in any way we could.  He has since asked us to do a couple of things. But then the other day he asked if we would be willing to send letters to those we know introducing him.  So today he brought lists of all Republican voters in several towns.  We marked those we know so that letters can be mailed in our name.  If you know me personally and live in District 110 you will probably be getting a letter soon.
     I am so impressed by his campaign strategy.  He has very little money--believing that relationship is the way to win votes, not money.  He hopes to try to meet all the people who voted in the last primary.  I believe he said there were 10,000 which he thought he could do before mid March.  He said he loves meeting all these people and hearing their stories and how he can help.  What an amazing man!    
      If you would like to read more of his story in his own words, check out his Facebook page.  You will see what I mean.  This man truly lives!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Another Emmet Fox Quote

“It is the law that any difficulties that can come to you at any time, must be exactly what you need most at the moment to enable you to take the next step forward by overcoming them. The only real misfortune, the only real tragedy, comes when we suffer without learning the lesson.”   ― Emmet FoxAround the Year with Emmet Fox: A Book of Daily Readings

Friday, February 5, 2016

Revised Website

     I have been working on re-doing the Martinsville Heritage Days website.  The Festival will be held June 10-12 this year.  It has taken much time and several 'live chats' with technicians to finish the website, but I am pleased with the results.  Check it out:  As plans for the Festival are finalized I will be adding a detailed schedule on the Festival Schedule page.

     Here are a few photos I took of the Draft Horse Show last year.  For more photos of last year's event see this blogpost.

Blue Ribbon Farm has been the North American Classic Champions for the last two years.  Their black percherons were magnificent!

     I hope you are planning to come for this great festival.  Last year's Draft Horse Show was spectacular but it will be even more so with the addition of the North American Classic Draft Horse Cart competition.  Also, a Horse Farming Exhibition has been added on Saturday morning before the Show begins at 1:00 so it's going to be a super event  Lisa Banga will again be announcing the Show.  She is in great demand as an announcer traveling all over the U. S. and Canada.  She was the announcer this year at the Classic Draft Horse Six Hitch finals in Oklahoma, so we are very fortunate to have her back.  Her commentary makes the show so much more interesting and helps explain the work involved in showing these magnificent animals.
     And then of course all the food vendors, artists & artisans selling hand made creations and the other fun things included in the Festival will make Heritage Days a great family weekend.  To top it off--it is all FREE!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Rediscovered Recipe

My sister gave me this easy recipe several years ago, but I had forgotten.  When I thought of it yesterday and decided to make it for lunch I made some minor changes.   It was really delicious!

For my future reference I'm posting it here the way I made it.  If you want to see the original recipe check out the Recipes #1 page above.

Mexican Pizza
1 lb. hamburger, browned
1 small jar picante sauce
1 pkg of 8 flour tortillas
2 + C. shredded cheddar cheese

Brown the hamburger.  Add the picante sauce.  In 9x13 pan, layer 1/2 the tortillas, top with hamburger mixture and then 1/2 the cheese.  Repeat layers.  Bake 25 minutes at 350 degrees or until cheese is bubbly.  Serve with shredded lettuce, chopped avocado and sour cream.  Serves 4-6.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Emmet Fox Quote on Love

       "There is no difficulty that enough love will not conquer, no disease that enough love will not heal; no door that enough love will not open; no gulf that enough love will not bridge; no wall that enough love will not throw down; no sin that enough love will not makes no difference how deeply seated may be the trouble; how hopeless the outlook; how muddled the tangle; how great the mistake. A sufficient realization of love will dissolve it all. If only you could love enough you would be the happiest and most powerful being in the world."  Emmet Fox