SoCS 11-12-22- Pursuit of Excellence

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “starts with or contains ‘cel.’” Find a word that begins with or contains “cel” and use it in your post any way you’d like. Have fun!

“Excellent!”
Have you ever watched a child’s face light up when you say that? That reaction is also an excellent outcome. It’s heartwarming!

That word is not synonymous with perfect, though. Perfect doesn’t actually exist in our everyday lives. It’s a unicorn; great to imagine but impossible to own. But “excellent” does absolutely exist.

Excellent is a worthy goal and looks different in every situation. Doing your best is excellent. Making even a tiny improvement is excellent. It seems that excellent can be a direction to move toward as often as an outcome. But excellent things rarely “pop” out of nowhere. They’re pursued. And in order to appreciate any “excellent” event we need to also know being disheartened and disappointed. Everything is relative.

I personally dislike complaining. And it just occurred to me that people who complain a lot may have unrealistic expectations of achieving excellence. Do we feed that attitude in kids? Are we so eager to see their glowing faces that we dish out the “that’s excellent!” praise too often? I can’t help thinking that we’re giving a terrible burden to kids when we do that. People who complain about everything are visibly miserable and while they are complaining, “hope” is nowhere to be found. Besides Love, Hope is an essential part of life. It gives you courage to “try again” and to persevere. Without it, ‘giving up’ is almost a sure thing.

That brings me to something I have pondered for a while. My parents’ and grandparents’ generations experienced The Great Depression and two World Wars. I was fortunate to know my grandparents and listened to their tales about ‘difficult times’. Why weren’t drug abuse, suicide, frantic outrage, and ‘safe spaces’ big deals then? Do modern day kids think struggling is something new? I think so. In fact, I don’t think modern day kids even recognize what ‘struggling’-real human despair- is.

Here’s a recommended topic of discussion with your kids and grandkids. As all things are relative, ask them to put down their $200.00 devices and chew on this:

“While rates of extreme poverty have declined substantially, falling from 36 percent in 1990, the report’s expanded examination of the nature of poverty demonstrates the magnitude of the challenge in eradicating it. Over 1.9 billion people, or 26.2 percent of the world’s population, were living on less than $3.20 per day in 2015. Close to 46 percent of the world’s population was living on less than $5.50 a day. “


And once you get their attention, watching this video together might give them an idea how to help out their fellow man. Wouldn’t that be excellent?!



Happy Saturday! I hope we all can inspire our kids to seek excellence!


https://lindaghill.com/2022/11/11/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-nov-12-2022/

Sunday Poser #99- 9/25/22

I compare myself to no one. Each day I count my blessings and set my sights on being a better version of myself.
There’s always room for improvement, IMHO.
I struggle, though, with trying to remain tolerant of others while feeling the need to ‘speak up’ in the face of evil and wrongdoing. The phrase “In order for evil to flourish it requires good men to do nothing.” looms large in my heart.
On a personal level, I try to be kind, forgiving, and tolerant and I save my ‘speaking out’ for topics, ideologies, and policies. I can ‘love’ individual people but in no way feel that I have any requirement to approve of their actions or philosophies.
I can be influenced by well-reasoned arguments, but I can never be bought, shamed or intimidated into doing (or believing in) anything I feel is unethical or immoral. Ultimately this makes me sometimes sound opinionated and/or intolerant of those who believe ‘making waves’ is ‘hate’ and uniform compliance is ‘kindness’.
With all due respect, I don’t allow the opinions of others to define me or threaten me, because I never lose sight of my faithfulness to God and being able to live with myself.
As far as forgiving myself, here’s a song I taught my day care kids many years ago. I still live by it. Enjoy!




https://lifeafter50forwomen.com/2022/09/25/sunday-poser-99/

Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge- For Ollie

Todays prompt: Use “never again” in a poem

He kissed my nose.
The pup chose me.
I hugged him tightly
My heart pure glee.
We had a life.
A sacred long bond.
No before or after
Nothing beyond.
His face grew grey
His joy slipped low
I knew, one day,
To let him go.
Never again! I cried.
Can’t go through such pain!
But to honor his memory
I chose to love once again…



Missing my dear friend Ollie. 2004-2019.

Ollie



Norah… rescued 2019

Norah


d’Verse Prosery Monday- Bloody Hope

Here’s how to take part in the Prosery Prompt:

– Write a piece of flash fiction or other prose of up to or exactly 144 words, including the given line.
– Post your Prosery piece on your blog and make certain to link back to this post.
– Place the link to your actual post (not your blog or web site) in the Mister Linky site.
– Don’t forget to check the little box to accept use/privacy policy
– Please visit other blogs and comment on their posts!
Remember: You must use that entire given prompt line for your Prosery piece. You may change punctuation and capitalize words, but you are not allowed to insert words between parts of the sentence.
Prompt line:
“For how can I be sure
I shall see again
The world on the first of May”
–From “May Day” by Sara Teasdale
___________________________________________

Bloody Hope

The bloody battle suddenly paused because of an unusual mid-April blizzard.
A tempest of icy crystals obscured visibility to a few feet as the under clothed soldiers huddled in small groups.
Jimmy’s tour-of-duty was due to end in thirteen days but his gut was warning him otherwise.
He felt compelled to scratch a short letter to his mother with numb fingertips and place it in his pocket.

Dear Mother,
We’ve been in a most bitter fight today.
Victory will be ours as soon as a brutal snowstorm lifts and offers my company its due.
Our resolve is solid and my discharge is imminent yet I wanted to let you know my heart is already home.
I am not afraid and I love you.
For how can I be sure I shall see again the world on the first of May?
Your loving son,
James



144-words

https://dversepoets.com/2022/05/09/prosery-sara-teasdale-and-may/

SoCS 4-16-22- Dogs Know Us

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “nose/noes/knows.” Use one, use ’em all, bonus points if you use all three. Have fun!


Anyone who has a dog discovers that it knows a lot.
Dogs comprehend many of our words and learn more about each of us than we realize. It’s clear that they study us. They know our ‘tells’ and can anticipate our moves with uncanny accuracy. Much has been written about this, but attentive dog owners learn this quickly. Just grab your car keys or put on your shoes and “Fido” is waiting at the door. Those examples are just small potatoes on the wider scale of what your pooch knows about you.
The study of chimpanzees not understanding the meaning of humans pointing at an object is one that fascinates me. Our closest genetic link in nature is oblivious to that, while dogs who don’t even have hands, seem hardwired to understand those gestures!
Dogs worry, can be jealous, can mourn, suffer from depression and love us deeply. People who love and treat them as family members always pass my first character screening with flying colors.
I’ve known and loved many dogs. Some of them weren’t even my own. Just like people, no two are alike. My life was deeply enriched by them, and I couldn’t be more thankful.
Happy Saturday everyone. ❤
https://lindaghill.com/2022/04/15/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-april-16-2022/

Song Lyric Sunday- March 6, 2022 – Fruit

This week the theme is songs that mention any fruit. 

I’ve made myself an agreement.
Only post songs on Song Lyric Sunday that I’d choose for my own playlist.
Sometimes I can’t recall any that fit the weekly theme, so I just don’t participate. Other times, I have BIG choices to make because I have more than one to showcase.
My choice was tough this week. It’s Sweet Cherry Wine by Tommy James and the Shondells. That group ranks in my top ten- possibly, top five favorites. The video contains the lyrics, so I chose not to post the lyrics. The current tension and atrocities in our world make this one a good choice IMHO. (Crystal Blue Persuasion is my favorite of their many excellent songs.) Cheers everyone!

Tommy James and the Shondells is an American pop and Rock n Roll group that was most active in the 60s. They had two number one singles in the U.S. — “Hanky Panky” (1966) and “Crimson and Clover” (1968) — but also released five other top ten hits, including “I Think We’re Alone Now“, “Mony Mony,” and “Crystal Blue Persuasion“. Their iconic hits are often played by ‘oldies‘ and ‘classic rock‘ stations. The band (from Niles, Michigan, USA) initially formed in 1959 as “Tom and the Tornadoes”, with the then only 12-year-old singer-songwriter Tommy James as the front man.


https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2022/03/05/taste-the-fruit/

Weekend Writing Prompt- Recipe

Weekend Writing Prompt #249: This weekend you challenge is to write a poem or a piece of prose in exactly 36 words using the word “Recipe”.

My oldest granddaughter Katherine.


A text from my granddaughter at school: “What you got to eat?”

“I’ll make tacos. Come to my house on the bus.”

“I’ll be there!”

It was well worth driving to the store for THAT recipe!

36 words