Wrapping All The Way Was A HUGE Success!

 

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I am extremely pleased to report that the play was performed for a packed church for both performances. Saturday night was the premiere and Sunday morning was an encore.

We shot video both times and I am waiting for the final go-ahead for approval to upload the Saturday evening event to YouTube so it can be watched along with the others you can find up there.

Some parents have yet to agree to that happening. None of the kid’s names are listed in the credits of the video. Either way, as I understand it, each cast member will be given a copy of the play on a USB thumb drive as a memory of their part in it.

The kids just saw the videos tonight during their regular Kids Club Tuesday night meeting. I am told by the director that they are very pleased with their efforts and had a lot of fun.

Saturday night we got underway at 5 P.M. sharp and it took about half an hour start to finish.

After the play ended and the kids had taken their bows there was thunderous applause and a standing ovation from everyone in the audience. A few minutes later they sang their final song as an encore.

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At the end, the Pastor presented the director (his wife) with roses for all her hard work and dedication.

She, in turn, thanked all who helped bring this play to reality and of course God for providing the children. At the beginning of October, there were only 3 children interested in being part of the cast.

All across the stage were 16 kids each with an integral part of the story. That is a miracle in itself, 13 more kids agreed to be in the play and they practiced every Tuesday night plus a couple of extra run-throughs right up to opening night.

In very short order they mastered complex dialogues, songs, actions to those songs, who they interact with and where to be on stage.

I am incredibly proud of these guys for getting up there and giving it all they had.

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I would be struck dumb with stage fright, I am sure. The girl who played Sparky had her cat die the night before the play and woke up the next morning to be told about her cat.

She still showed up and soldiered on even though she was grief stricken. Just amazing…I am in awe of all of them.

The children were sent downstairs to change out of their costumes in order to preserve them for the next morning’s encore performance. Shortly after that, their families were sent down to be with them.

There were tables reserved for the cast and their family members so that they could sit together during dinner. Aside from that, there were dishes, silverware and cups etc. for 175 people in all.

The Amish community was hired by the church to cater a full turkey dinner buffet style. All one had to do was file past the serving tables and be asked what you wanted to be added to your plate.

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There was a choice of white meat and dark, stuffing, peas, carrots, coleslaw, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, rolls (both white and whole wheat) and butter.

There were people circulating among the crowd serving coffee, tea, and an orange drink. As soon as your meal was done there was someone who showed up to inquire if you would like dessert.

Dessert was a scoop of ice cream and a chocolate cupcake drizzled with marshmallow and caramel was beside it on the plate. Mmm, it was delicious.

Sunday’s encore performance of the play took place instead of the usual sermon. There were gremlins in the midst during that time.

The CD used to play the music that the children sing to, at one point, did not sync up correctly and they had to eventually go on without one horn blast to announce the Queen of Tuneville.

The audience laughed off the glitch and the children took it in stride and continued on. In the end, they received another standing ovation!

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Hubby and I were surprised at the church when we were there practicing for this Saturday’s worship (Kevin will be playing guitar up front and I am going to be on Soundboard again) as part of our Christmas Eve service.

Mary came up to us and handed us a present for Christmas and the card attached thanked us for all our work on Wrapping All The Way.

We were given two mugs with scripture on them and a large tin of Quality Street Chocolates. Mmmm…who doesn’t like getting spoiled? LOL 😉

There will be a Christmas Day service at the usual time too but I will be staying home to welcome my son, his wife and my 2 1/2-year-old grandson. They will be traveling  approx. 3 hours up to see us for the day from their house down south of us.

When my husband is done playing for the Sunday service he will be home to join us. Their plan is to get an early start on the trip up here so they can spend the better part of the day with us before having to return home.

I am looking forward to taking lots of pictures and video of the little guy since they stay small for such a short time.

Seeing pictures of him I am amazed at how much he looks like his Dad at that same age.

We are having ham this year. Frankly, we are done with poultry for a while and I am thankful that I did not have to cook or clean up a turkey dinner.

I am looking forward to seeing my son, daughter in law and grandson. It has been a long time since seeing them last.

Their gifts are waiting for them under the tree and I can’t wait to see them open them on Sunday. That to me is my greatest joy…seeing others opening gifts more so than opening gifts given to me.

I will end this post here as there is a lot of house cleaning and baking I want to get done before they get here.

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But first I want to wish everyone reading this a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. If you celebrate something else I wish you a happy one of those as well. 🙂

Thank you for your support during this first year of my blog. I appreciate each and every one of you whether you are following my blog or just happened to stumble upon this post on your first visit here.

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Tomorrow Night It’s Curtain Time!

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The Kids’ Club Christmas play has it’s opening night tomorrow night at our church. The play is titled Wrapping All The Way and it tells the story of Jesus’ birth in a manger, the true meaning of Christmas.

There are several videos on YouTube if you would like to look it up and see basically what it is about and what it looks like. Just type ‘Wrapping All The Way’ in the search.

We have been practicing several times a week and our last run-through will be tonight at 6:30 p.m. before tomorrow night’s official production.

The play will begin tomorrow night at 5 p.m. and right after the play we all go downstairs for a full turkey dinner being put on by the church.

Everyone is welcome – the entire cast, the production team (which includes me on the soundboard and my husband who will be running the video camera) and all members of the audience whether they attend our church or not.

I took some pictures of the stage to give you an idea of what it will look like. Once all the permission forms are handed in pictures and video can be taken of the children performing the play.

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All safety steps are being taken to protect the children’s identity when it comes to sharing any photos or video of the night.

Things were a little rough in the beginning but now the children have their parts down and are beginning to shine in the spotlight. They are getting better at using the microphones, making my job easier.

The youngest cast member is just 6 years old and she is a dynamo! Wow, she has a great singing voice and not only knows her lines but pretty much everyone else’s.

She is a natural born actress. Her role is a dual one; playing Tanzie the star of the gift wrapping station in the town square and Mary, the mother of Jesus.

The story is basically one of a fictional town called Tuneville where the citizens like Christmas so much they declare every day to be Christmas Day.

They get so caught up in the excitement, gifts, and commercialism of the holiday that they forget what the true meaning is. So Tanzie tells them the story of Mary, Joseph and the angels heralding the birth of Jesus.

 

I am excited to be on the team helping to bring this play to life and I must admit a little nervous too. I just don’t want anything to happen that will detract from all the hard work these children have put in.

We have a whiteboard right next to the soundboard that has this written on it in red marker. “God gave you His best what are you giving Him?”

That always gives me pause to think every time I sit down at the controls. It is time to head off to the church for our final practice so I will finish and post this now.

Thanks to everyone that stopped by my blog to read what I had to say today.

Thank You, Everyone!

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Today’s post is dedicated to every single one of you out there in cyberspace that stops by and reads my blog from time to time. I want to say  Thank You as I approach this milestone.

Coming up very quickly now, on Wednesday, December 21st, I will be celebrating ONE FULL YEAR since my very first post on this blog.

The 21st is also my husband’s birthday. He turns 48 this year and I can’t tell you how different things are since he turned 47. Wait, maybe I can…let’s see. 😉

We live in a different apartment and a different locale. We moved from the city with a population of somewhere around 54,500 people to a town with a population of 3,500.

That alone was a huge difference and then adding to that our apartment itself has gone from something stuck in the 50’s/60’s to an apartment that is brand new & modern, where we are the very first tenants.

We went from not going to church at all in the city to being fully involved in our local church here.

Kevin plays guitar sometimes with the worship team. I operate the soundboard and record the sermon to be put on the church’s website.

Both of us help clean the church every other week as well. Life here has turned a full 180 degrees from the life we lived back in the city.

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This will be my 92nd post and I now have 88 followers on WordPress plus 3 followers via email. I am ecstatically happy with my blog’s growth.

It means the world to me that all those people, and more, want to read what I write. Thank you, doesn’t begin to express my gratitude but it is the best I can do right now.

In that same year, my YouTube channel has finally begun to take off as well. Back in the city, I was lucky to have just over 200 subscribers and just yesterday I attained 600 subs!

On the 21st I will be enjoying a steak dinner with all the fixings with my husband to celebrate not only his birthday but a tremendous first anniversary of my blog.

The fact that I have stuck to writing this blog that long is amazing to me. I have attempted to blog before but soon lost interest and let the blogs fade into obscurity.

I actually feel like I am in a really good place in my life now. Gone are the depressing surroundings, gone too are the wishy-washy commitments to blogging and to my YouTube channel.

Now that I am seeing significant changes and improvements in all areas in my life and what I am doing I feel like I have the momentum to keep rolling full steam ahead in this direction.

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Well, my friends, I will cut this post short and get it uploaded. There is still much to do and so very little day left in which to do it.

Please know that I appreciate each and every one of you reading this. You are all contributing to my happiness in this present moment and I am so very grateful.

Have yourselves a wonderful day/night and I will see you again for post #93.  🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update On: How To Schedule Your Time Making Your Days Count

On November 8th this year I wrote a post titled (clicking on this link will open that post in a new window)

How To Schedule Your Time Making Your Days Count

I mentioned at the end of that post that I would write an update in one month’s time to let you know how the schedule I made was working out.

Long story short, it didn’t work out. 😦

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Here is what I think happened, my carefully worked out list and plans did not mesh with my real life issues.

My plan/schedule was too regimented with no built-in flexibility for the curves life sometimes throws at you.

I had everything scheduled and set up on my iPhone with alerts when it was time to change to the next activity. I was trying to keep a schedule that would allow me to do a little bit of everything.

It seemed a little better to get some of everything done than to complete one task and miss other equally important tasks altogether.

Ahh, what to do…what to do?

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So I am back at square one; not completely, though…maybe square two? I mean I still have the list of things that I need to get accomplished. Now I just need to figure out how to do it all.

I need something that will work with my life; that will be flexible so that I can adjust on the fly, when I need to, without throwing the whole thing in the garbage and starting again.

One thing is certain, what I was trying did not work for me. It was a success nonetheless because I did find out a way that didn’t work and can now eliminate that  from my list of things to try.

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One more idea bulb burned out….next! Onward we go…charge!!! LOL 😉

My iPhone has now been scrubbed of all my best-laid plans and alerts. To be honest, the alerts were driving me a bit batty.

The phone was chiming in with another alert all the time and at one point my only thought was “ugh, what?…what now?”.

Therefore, I have decided that I will not be using the phone for this anymore. I will still set up alerts and reminders for scheduled items like doctor appointments or when my library books are due, but not my day to day schedule.

 

What is the next idea to try? Does anyone have any thoughts to share on what I should try next? What works for you?

I would really appreciate hearing from you in the comments and I thank you for stopping by to see what I had to say today. 🙂 Have a wonderful day/night.

Allow Me To Tell You A Tale Or Three

 

 

Today’s post is inspired by yet another prompt from 365 Days Of Writing Prompts.

Weaving The Threads

Draft a post with three parts, each unrelated to the other, but create a common thread between them by including the same item — an object, a symbol, a place — in each part.

PART ONE

Meghan left the comfort of her recliner chair by the window and crossed the room to deposit the book she had been reading onto the deep mahogany bookshelf.

It slid right back into the spot she had taken it from; books on either side of it standing watch over the space until it was once more where it should be.

Meg, as her friends referred to her, was desperate  to discover what the meaning was behind the symbol on the large picture she had bought for her living room wall.

She loved the colors and the feeling of peace that the picture conveyed to her. As soon as she saw it at the art dealers she knew she had to have it.

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The message across the bottom was like an affirmation for her and the orange, yellow and brown hues seemed to brighten the room and give it some life.

The couch and two tub chairs were covered in a barely there beige colored fabric. The contrast to the mahogany bookcase was pleasant enough.

The floor covered as it was, in a slightly darker shade of beige low pile, industrial carpet did not add much in the way of personality to the room.

The painting she had acquired, however, had just the right amount of punch to draw your attention to it and hold you mesmerized for the longest time.

Meg was pleased with having finally found a focal point for the rather dreary nondescript room.

The artwork puzzled her and something nagged at the back of her mind that she should know what that symbol was.

When the reference books she had looked through failed to put her mind at ease as to what that symbol was and what it meant her attention was drawn to the internet.

Books are old school technology, really, who bothers reading books anymore? she thought as she switched on her All In One desktop computer.

Shaking her head; she reminded herself that she had just been reading a book, hadn’t she?

Finally, her login screen appeared and after typing in her password she settled into the chair to do some intense searching.

The very first website in her crosshairs was, of course, Google. Into the search box, the keys tapped out the words Egyptian symbols.

The Egyptian pyramids in the background gave her more hints to include for her search. In a flash, Google filled the page with results.

She moved the cursor up to the right and clicked on the Images tab. The page was then flooded with images of the very symbol she was looking for.

With a quick click on an image almost identical to the symbol in her artwork she followed the link through to the website where the image lived and where Google had found it.

There she found out that the symbol is called an ANKH and ancient Egyptians did indeed equate it with eternal life.

A huge smile broke over her face as she continued reading the entire page.

Knowledge is power, after all. With a contented sigh, Meg pushed the chair back from the computer desk and stared across the room at the pyramids and ankh – mystery solved.

PART TWO

 

The huge museum that was located in the center of the city was hosting an Egyptian exhibit for the month of November.

Come visit our King Tut Exhibit November 1st posters declared all over the city.

Artifacts and treasured pieces that were loaned out by other museums had arrived by the end of October and staff had carefully moved them into position for opening time on November 1st.

The displays were filled with King Tut’s sarcophagus, of course, amid other chunks of stone bearing hieroglyphs placed on platforms behind velvet ropes to keep the public’s hands off.

There were Coptic jars and  all manner of items with ankh symbols engraved in or on them. A figurine of an ankh stood proudly beside a carving of the Eye Of Horus.

By far the biggest draw would be the sealed clear glass container tethered by a strong chain to the display table. Inside it lay the mummified lower arm and hand of a servant to King Tut.

As you passed by the display table while staying behind the red velvet rope a museum employee would allow you to briefly hold the container to feel the tremendous weight of the servant’s arm and hand.

This memory would travel through life with all who took up the offer to hold it for the time allotted.

It was a rare once in a lifetime opportunity that would inspire some to consider becoming an archaeologist in the future.

The gift and souvenir shop located just before the exit doors featured a choice of items decorated with ankh symbols designed to commemorate this very special exhibit.

 

PART THREE

Guards stood at attention at the main doors. They weren’t dressed as guards since this was a clandestine meeting place for the very exclusive, very private club known only as ANKH.

You had to be special indeed to be a member and gain entry to the well-appointed interior rooms behind the massive dark oak doors.

Despite their size, the doors could be moved with little effort and the guards were constantly ready to swing into action to defend the club at a moment’s notice.

Training provided all the skills necessary to be efficient when executing your duties as a guard. There were no witnesses; if you dared to challenge a guard you had better have your affairs in order.

Membership required a tattoo; a specific tattoo, an ankh, because it was the insignia of the club. Once you were inducted into the club you were taken to the back room and permanently marked with the ankh.

A tattoo was chosen because a pin or ring could be lost; could be misappropriated by someone without membership status.

The tattoo was done in secret using inks that were not available anywhere else. The mark was to be placed at the back of the neck. It was easier to hide under long hair or high collars.

 

The style of the ankh was slightly different depending on who wielded the tattoo gun but the placement was exactly the same.

Once you were in the club there was no getting out. Meetings were held regularly in secret. Please don’t ask what the meetings were pertaining to as I am not allowed to tell you.

What? No, you may not see the back of my neck. Why would you ask me that?

I know my favorite symbol is the ankh; the same is true for a lot of people so that doesn’t mean anything.

Okay, I need to leave now because this conversation is taking a turn into a questionable territory and you need to ask yourself one question.

Which is more important to me; the answers to all my questions or my life?


 

The above three parts are all unrelated to one another and yet the common thread through all of them is the symbol of the ankh.

Here is the information on the ankh symbol that can be found on Wikipedia:

The ankh (/ˈæŋk/ or /ˈɑːŋk/; Egyptian ꜥnḫ), also known as crux ansata (the Latin for “cross with a handle”) is an ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic ideograph with the meaning “life”.

The Egyptian gods are often portrayed carrying it by its loop, or bearing one in each hand, arms crossed over their chest. The ankh appears in hand or in proximity of almost every deity in the Egyptian pantheon (including Pharaohs).

The ankh symbol was so prevalent that it has been found in digs as far as Mesopotamia and Persia, and even on the seal of the biblical king Hezekiah.[1]

The symbol became popular in New Age mysticism in the 1960s.

Thanks for stopping by my blog to read my post today. 🙂 Wishing you a wonderful day/night.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can I Just Curl Up Somewhere And Die Now Please?

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Hi, everyone! Today’s post is all about sleep or rather the lack of it. So, this happened last night and into the wee hours of this morning. I thought I would share it with you in a post.

After dinner last night I had the worst stomach ache. It was a doozy; I have not felt pain like that in a long, long time. There was no reason for it either; I did not overeat and what I ate my husband ate and he did not feel ill.

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For some reason, my stomach was bloated and rock hard. If you have ever experienced that you know how much that hurts and there is nothing to be done, that I have found in any case, but wait it out.

I did not even have one of these.

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I used to have a really good quality one but somehow it got left behind during a move I made years ago. Sadly, I have never thought to replace it; until now.

I attempted to lay down for the night at around 10:30 p.m. After tossing and turning for a little over an hour; I could not find a comfortable position to sleep in plus the pain would not let me sleep anyway.

Around 11:45 p.m. I got out of bed and crept to the living room so I would not wake my husband. I turn the tri-light lamp on in the corner propped myself up with pillows and covered my lower half with an olive green microfiber blanket to stay warm.

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There I sat with my 747-page book reading trying to take my mind off the pain. I found that if I did not move much the pain would subside a little.

I sat like this for hours. I made it through close to 100 pages. Thankfully it is a riveting page-turner of a book.

Around 3:30 a.m. I decided to take a hot shower to see if the heat would help my stomach muscles relax a little. It is at times like this I miss my bathtub.

Did you know you could mimic the effects of a hot water bottle by laying down surrounded by hot water? That was my go-to remedy when I needed a hot water bottle and didn’t have one.

Ever since moving out here to the country all we have access to is a shower. The hot water did help a little but I was getting really tired and did not want to stand in the shower for too long.

There is a seat molded into our shower unit but no matter how I adjusted the shower head I could not get it to reach the right place.

After toweling off and getting dressed in my PJs again I returned to my previous position in the living room.

Just as I got back into a semi-comfortable spot I remembered that peppermint tea is good for digestive issues.

So, off to the kitchen I went in search of my variety tea stash. I have a tub of a variety of single wrapped and boxes of herbal teas.

I remembered the bright green foil packets that contained my peppermint tea bags.

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It was such a eureka moment when I was able to pull that plastic tub out of one of my upper cupboards and spotted the green foil.

Yes! I was in luck I still had almost a dozen peppermint tea bags left. With a quick boil of my cordless kettle, I soon had a peppermint tea bag steeping in a cup; which I carried back into the living room.

Setting the tea mug down on the side table by the couch I once more nestled myself into the pillows and blanket setup I had figured out previously.

I picked up my book again and when the tea had steeped until it turned the water a beautiful deep green I began sipping intermittently.

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My poor stomach; I did not want to add more to it but regarded the tea as a medicine that must be drunk if I were to even hope to feel better.

Eventually, the mug was emptied and I had read another 5o or so pages when I noticed that my stomach was not hurting as badly.

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Did I dare to attempt laying down and chance the pain returning? With my eyes beginning to burn and a headache threatening to start I decided to chance it.

I returned my mug to the kitchen not even bothering to remove the spent tea bag before placing it on the counter.

I glanced at the time displayed on my microwave oven before leaving the kitchen and did a double take. Could it seriously be 5:30 a.m. already?

Indeed it was, no wonder my eyes were burning. Shutting the light off in the living room on my way through to the bedroom I found my way to my side of the bed in the pitch black.

This was a familiar route since I made on average one to two trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night every night to pee.

My husband never woke up as I slid under the covers and settled into a comfortable pose on my left side. I had been told by a nurse once that laying on your left side is better for you.

I have no idea why that is so but with this memory I just landed in bed on my left side. Closing my eyes and focusing on my breathing ended up sweeping me off to dreamland. Finally!

My husband woke me with a fresh pot of tea, as is his custom, at 8:30 a.m. so we could get on with our day and head over to clean the church.

Ugh, three hours of sleep and now I had to scrub the toilet, clean the vanity, Windex the mirror and empty the trash.

I have not had a nap yet and am still plowing through the day. The time now is 3:31 p.m. and here I sit at my computer writing a blog post. :0

Well, I shall end this post here and go start making dinner. I believe an early dinner and an early bedtime are in order today. Thank you very much for popping by to read my post today.

If you have stuck with me this far into the post; you have my undying gratitude because that means I have not written all this in vain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reasons To Say No Thank You To Negativity

Today’s post is inspired by another prompt from 365 Days Of Writing Prompts

Third from the top – Head to your favorite blog. Scroll down to the third post in the list.Take the third sentence in the post, and work it into a new post of your own.

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I have chosen one of my favorite bloggers BeautyBeyondBones for this assignment. The third post in her list, at the time of this writing, is titled

 7 Things I Learned This Election Season   <—and you can find it here. Please go check her blog out I enjoy her posts which are written with heart and spirit.

When I work the third sentence into this post I will put it in bold type so you’ll know.

Have you noticed a lot more people are negative now more than in the past? Sure, there are people that are upbeat and cheery but I find I am running into more grumpy naysayers in my day to day life.

It starts way back in childhood when our parents veto what we want to do. It is their job to impose limits and boundaries for us. Children need to know where these limits are in order to feel secure.

I mention it only because this is the first place we meet up with a firm “No” and are crestfallen to discover that we are not free to do whatever we want.

After this first harsh lesson at home with our parents, we are subjected to negativity from classmates in the schoolyard.

No, you can’t play hopscotch with us, no we don’t want you on the team; heartbreaking messages when you are young.

Rejection is hard to take at any age but seems to cut deeper when we are young and haven’t been toughened up by life yet.

There are a lot of negative emotions as you can see in the graphic below.

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I personally do not see the need for nor the validity of such emotions…I mean really; what purpose does negativity serve?

We feel bad and if we are already spiraling downward into depression this certainly doesn’t help.

In fact, negativity at that stage could push us into doing something rather permanent due to a temporary feeling.

After dealing with negative people and negative feelings for a lot of years (almost 55 years as a matter of fact) I am more than ready to declare something.

I can’t take the negativity any longer!

When people get in a bad mood because of life stresses or something is not going the way they had hoped it can be quite easy to lash out at those around them.

Often the targets of these temper tantrums are the very people who care for and are trying to help them.

In their negative mindset quick tempers and biting words are the chosen response to helpful suggestions.

I am not saying that I never get in a bad mood or a negative frame of mind but I am cognizant of those around me and would rather keep to myself than lash out.

To put it bluntly, I can not stand the negativity in myself any longer either.

Stressors abound in our world today; unemployment, rising prices on everything, relationships get stressed and the news on T.V. is rarely the good kind anymore.

Traffic is jammed on the commute to and from your job if you are lucky enough to have one, or to and from stores or appointments.

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All of this adds up to the world full of people who find themselves in a negative spin. Everyone seems to be angry, frustrated and snappy these days.

Our court system bears witness to our society that would rather sue than talk rationally when there is a problem.

Everywhere we look there are negative attitudes, negative consequences and the government enacting laws that tell us we can’t do this or that.

Sometimes all this negativity makes me want to hole up in my house and live in isolation as much as possible unless I need to go out for food.

Since moving out to the country I can tell you our trips into the city where we used to live stresses me out. The distance doesn’t bother me so much as the crowds in the stores.

People can be rude, inconsiderate and downright angry over the smallest things and I find I am more aware of it now that I live out in the country than when I lived right there in the city.

I believe it is because I am no longer immersed in and desensitized to it, after living in peace and quiet, that it is more apparent to me now.

Do you find there is more negativity around you lately? How do you deal with it? Please let me know in the comment section.

Thanks for visiting my blog once again to read my thoughts today. I do appreciate you stopping by. Have a wonderful day/night and I will be talking to you again. =)

 

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