Monday, January 30, 2017

Cabin Fever?

January has come and now the month is almost gone.  It came with a blast of winter weather having both the beauty and inconvenience of layered snow and cold temperatures in Eastern Oregon.  Folks were digging out and also digging in to combat heavy snow on the outside and keeping the house warm on the inside.  It was a time when you left water taps open to avoid pipes freezing and turned up the house thermostat.  Stacked firewood was put to the test to feed wood stoves in many homes  for a cozy warmth.  It was a time when a person thought twice about going anywhere because of the snow and ice hazards on the road.  It was a time for cabin fever! 

What exactly is cabin fever??  It is a term used to describe feelings of restlessness, boredom, impatience brought on by being stuck indoors for an extended period.  Most of us have experienced cabin fever at one time or another.  However, I was able to grab my camera, put on a heavy jacket and boots and take a short walk.  My goal was to look for a photo opportunity as a cabin fever therapy!!  I'd like to share a few pictures with you....

The below photo was taken of a herd of elk that had gathered on a distant hillside.  The snow and cold had driven them to a lower elevation in search of feed.  Yes, tough weather on animals as well.  I had to use the camera zoom for a closer view since they were some distance away, causing a little loss in picture clarity, but I was happy for the camera shot anyway.

This is one of my favorite photos of Jim as he is fights the elements in daily feeding chores, which is a normal winter occurrence.  Anyone with livestock knows that it is part of the job to keep animals fed and well throughout the winter season.....

As we move into February with warmer temperatures and a promise of Spring to come, 2017 rolls along unfolding days with its surprises as well as the familiar in our life's journey.

Until we meet again at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, February 13, I leave you with an interesting quote by Steve Southerland... "I believe in process.  I believe in four seasons.  I believe that winter's tough, but spring's coming.  I believe that there's a growing season.  And I think that you realize that in life, you grow.  You get better."


Monday, January 16, 2017

Legacy of Carrie Young

I wanted to use this post to write about two sisters who have made a difference in the community in which I live.  It is a true story based on one who died and one who is living and a resulting legacy....

Carrie Young was only 32 years of age when her life was cut short in an auto accident in 1993.  Out of this tragedy, her sister Lucie Immoos, began a movement to honor the memory of her beloved sister.  A legacy began as the Carrie Young Memorial took shape, expanding through the years into a blessing of success - for the elderly and for the community.

Carrie Young  (July 13, 1961 - September 15, 1993)
Carrie's career was in health services, working for the local hospital and nursing home in Grant County particularly dealing in Alzheimer care.  In Lucie's words... "Carrie specialized in Alzheimer's and dearly loved the patients that she tended to each and every day.  After Carrie's death my family learned that she had been buying Christmas gifts for the patients that had no family or little money.  I wanted to do something to keep my sister's memory alive."

Lucie turned the loss of her sister into a legacy in the gift of giving to the senior community.  The small acts of kindness that Carrie demonstrated by her own giving to those patients who had very little has continued on.  With help from family and friends, Lucie began a project to raise money for the needy in the elderly community that range from residents in nursing facilities to helping seniors in their own homes.  A memorial benefit auction began at a grass root level with the very first year raising $175Now in its 23rd year, county participation has grown and last month, the Carrie Young Memorial raised $28,000.

Funds are obtained through a silent auction with baskets made up of donations from local businesses, family and friends.  The baskets are beautifully arranged with a variety of items, distinct in personality, appealing in a variety of choices to bid on.  The tables are set in a holiday mood with Christmas lights adding atmosphere to the large display of multiple baskets for auction.  The crowd of folks attending enjoy looking, socializing and having fun bidding on their favorite basket(s).  A spaghetti feed is held in conjunction with the auction, largely attended with rave reviews. 

The money collected is used to aid seniors throughout Grant County, including four care centers.  A wide range of needs are taken care of through the monies raised.  Gift certificates are arranged to handle heating oil or electric bills, groceries and delivery of firewood, just to name a few of the memorial's outreach.  There is even a wish list that Santa delivers in an array of brightly wrapped Christmas presents to facility residents.  They receive their own special bag containing items from their individual wish list.

Held the first Friday of December, the Carrie Young Memorial has blossomed and blessed both seniors and community alike.  It's essence hinged on the simple action of one young woman, Carrie Young, who gave out of her own heart and money to those she cared for and has now passed on through the heart of her sister, Lucie.  The old saying "it takes a village to raise a child" can apply to this benefit memorial.  Many helping hands have been involved to make this project happen and with a grateful heart, Lucie is thankful to all those who have made it possible....   businesses for their donations, shopping crew, high school students who wrapped gifts, the creativity of local talent in making such beautiful baskets and bows, the kitchen crew who fed and cleaned up after everyone, the local Elks Lodge, making their building available.  And Lucie would like to THANK YOU GRANT COUNTY for your generosity in coming out to this event and being a part of a community effort in the gift of giving for our seniors. 

If you have not attended the Carrie Young Memorial, make a date on your calendar for the next benefit in December.  That's just eleven months away!  Not far off, the way time quickly passes by and you will not be disappointed by attending.  I have enjoyed myself immensely - it's a lot of fun and I'm always impressed by the giving of this wonderful community towards any worthy cause.

See you next time at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, January 30th.  Until then, I leave you with a worthy quote by Lao Tzu... "Kindness in words creates confidence.  Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.  Kindness in giving creates love."

Monday, January 2, 2017

A New Day in a New Year

As the tradition goes in New Year Resolutions, many are made and many are broken in the concept of "new and resolution".  What is that exactly?  Several definitions of  new is original and fresh.  Resolution simply stated is an expression of intention.  Another way of saying could be "a fresh purpose or goal".  I personally don't do new year resolutions as it can be a setup for failure.  Expectations can run high often short circuited with varying outcomes that run from procrastination to sincere commitment to indifference. 

One thing to remember is that every day can be a fresh day, when we are given the luxury to begin anew.  Problems may still exist in its many forms but we are promised with new beginnings to offset the challenges and changes we face in our life's journey. 

These are just a few of many scriptures relating to new beginnings:  Lamentations 3:22-23...  "The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."

Isaiah 43:18-19..."Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old.  Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?  I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert."

As I post today's blog entry, my first in 2017, I am reminded that we do not have a guarantee of tomorrow. However, our today has constant aspiration and inspiration to access and utilize in the unfolding of new moments. I close with this great quote by Hal Borland as a reminder that the....

Blessings in 2017 ....  Come! Visit me at The Turn-Up Patch next time on Monday, January 19.